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Stick and Carrot
Music: John Marsh
The Virgin Mary and her son team up to get the best out of some careless monks.

THE Abbot of the Vatopedi monastery was in the chapel alone one morning, when suddenly he heard a voice.

After looking this way and that, he realised it had come from an icon of Mary, with her child Jesus on her lap.

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Word Play

Adapted from textbooks used in Grammar Schools and Secondary Moderns from the 1920s to the 1960s.

Distinguish using sentences: Unless. Except.

Use as a noun and also as a verb: Face. Look. Lap.

Use together in one sentence: Finger. Suddenly. Draw.

More games: Précis. Sevens. Jigsaw. Confusables. Spinner. Opposites. Verb or Noun? Active or Passive? Subject and Object. Adjectives. Word Classes.

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Bede and the Paschal Controversy
Music: George Frideric Handel
The earliest Christians longed to celebrate the resurrection together at Passover, but that was not as easy as it sounds.

CHRIST died and rose again at Passover, the week-long Jewish festival at the first full moon of Spring. Christians had always wanted to celebrate Easter at that time each year, but no astronomer could determine the vernal equinox or full moon with precision.

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Word Play

Adapted from textbooks used in Grammar Schools and Secondary Moderns from the 1920s to the 1960s.

Distinguish using sentences: Historic. Historical. Hysterical.

Use as a noun and also as a verb: Want. Wait. Rise.

Use together in one sentence: Long. Want. Whatever.

More games: Confusables. Spinner. Opposites. Verb or Noun? Active or Passive? Subject and Object. Adjectives. Word Classes.

Our Lady’s Mantle
Music: Francesco Geminiani
Shortly after Askold and Dir founded Kiev in 862, they launched a brazen but ill-fated assault on the capital of the Roman Empire.

IN 988, Vladimir the Great, Prince of Kiev, converted to Christianity after receiving exuberant reports of the beauty of worship in Constantinople. A century earlier, however, Kiev’s pagan founders, Askold and Dir, had thought quite differently, crossing the Black Sea to lay siege to the Imperial capital while its Emperor, Michael III, was away dealing with an Arab assault on the eastern border.

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Word Play

Adapted from textbooks used in Grammar Schools and Secondary Moderns from the 1920s to the 1960s.

Distinguish using sentences: Insult. Assault.

Use as a noun and also as a verb: Keep. Wind. Belt.

Use together in one sentence: Soon. Splinter. Capital.

More games: Précis. Sevens. Jigsaw. Confusables. Spinner. Opposites. Verb or Noun? Active or Passive? Subject and Object. Adjectives. Word Classes.

St Helen Finds the True Cross
Music: Charles Villiers Stanford
The mother of the Roman Emperor goes to Jerusalem on a quest close to her heart.

EMPEROR Constantine the Great secured his crown by displaying the sign of the Cross in battle, and soon afterwards, in 326, he encouraged his Christian mother, Helen, to go to Jerusalem to find Christ’s original, true Cross.

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Word Play

Adapted from textbooks used in Grammar Schools and Secondary Moderns from the 1920s to the 1960s.

Distinguish using sentences: Manslaughter. Murder.

Use as a noun and also as a verb: Sign. Cross. Hold.

Use together in one sentence: Secret. Genuinely. Murder.

More games: Précis. Sevens. Jigsaw. Confusables. Spinner. Opposites. Verb or Noun? Active or Passive? Subject and Object. Adjectives. Word Classes.

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The Spear of St Mercurius
Music: George Frideric Handel
Roman Emperor Julian was ready to destroy an entire Christian community over his wounded pride.

ON his way to Persia to do battle, the Emperor Julian ran into Basil, Bishop of Caesarea. They had been at the same Christian school, and Basil, after offering him some bread, joked that he had benefited rather more from their education than Julian, who was now a pagan.

To Basil’s amazement, Julian was furious.

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Word Play

Adapted from textbooks used in Grammar Schools and Secondary Moderns from the 1920s to the 1960s.

Distinguish using sentences: Pretty. Quite. Rather.

Use as a noun and also as a verb: Benefit. Grass. Offer.

Use together in one sentence: Church. Nearby. Puzzled.

More games: Précis. Sevens. Jigsaw. Confusables. Spinner. Opposites. Verb or Noun? Active or Passive? Subject and Object. Adjectives. Word Classes.

The Fall of Constantinople
Music: William Herschel
Hospitality and sympathy, but no help - the Byzantine Emperor learns a bitter lesson about western diplomacy.

FROM 1399 to 1403, the Byzantine Emperor Manuel II toured Europe, drumming up support for the defence of Constantinople from the growing threat of the Turks. He even visited London, where Henry IV treated him to a Christmas joust.

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Word Play

Adapted from textbooks used in Grammar Schools and Secondary Moderns from the 1920s to the 1960s.

Distinguish using sentences: Who. Which. That.

Use as a noun and also as a verb: Visit. Kiss. Refuse.

Use together in one sentence: Cry. When. Visit.

More games: Précis. Sevens. Jigsaw. Confusables. Spinner. Opposites. Verb or Noun? Active or Passive? Subject and Object. Adjectives. Word Classes.