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Nos 311 to 320
Henry Purcell
Poets and Poetry
King Arthur’s Last Request
The legendary British warrior makes ready for his final journey, leaving Sir Bedivere with one last duty to perform.
By Alfred, Lord Tennyson
(1809-1892)

“I HAVE liv’d my life, and that which I have done
May He within himself make pure! but thou,
If thou shouldst never see my face again,
Pray for my soul.

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No. 311
2 two-part story
Henry Purcell
Stuart Era
King Charles II (1649-1685)
The Last Days of Charles II
James calls Fr Huddleston to his brother’s deathbed, ready for a most delicate task.

IT was, they said, not unusual for Chiffinch, Charles’s confidential servant, to bring certain charming visitors up the back stairs to his master’s bedroom. Now the King lay upon his deathbed, however, the visitor was of another kind.

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No. 312
John Hebden
Greek and Roman Myths
Bellerophon and the Chimera
The wronged hero vanquishes a dreadful monster with the help of a winged horse, but then it all goes to his head.

AFTER Bellerophon spurned the advances of Anteia, Queen of Tyrins, she had the handsome hero banished to Lycia.

With him went a coded letter to the King, Iobates, who just happened to be Anteia’s father, recommending that Bellerophon be put to death.

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No. 313
Charles Villiers Stanford
Extracts from Literature
‘God Tempers the Wind to the Shorn Lamb’
Mary Mason could not forgive herself for a past misdeed.
By Anthony Trollope
(1815-1882)

I MAY, perhaps be thought to owe an apology to my readers in that I have asked their sympathy for a woman who had so sinned as to have placed her beyond the general sympathy of the world at large.

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No. 314
2 two-part story
Muzio Clementi
Literary Figures
King George III (1760-1820)
Jane Austen
The blushing clergyman’s daughter is recognised today as one of the great figures of English literature.

GEORGE Austen, a rural clergyman in Steventon, Hampshire, was blessed with a family of six sons and two daughters.

His next-to-youngest child was Jane, whom he encouraged to write tales for the family’s entertainment. A busy round of relatives and parishioners provided plenty of material for her acute observation.

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No. 315
Frank Bridge
Classical History
Xerxes Scourges the Hellespont
The Persian King felt that a lord of his majesty should not have to take any nonsense from an overgrown river.
By Herodotus
(?484-?425 BC)

MEANWHILE, his men were bridging the Hellespont from Asia to Europe. But no sooner had the strait been bridged than a great storm swept down, breaking and scattering everything.

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No. 316
Frank Bridge
Anglo-Saxon History
King Canute (Cnut) (1016-1035)
Turning the Tide
King Canute enacted a memorable demonstration of the limits of government power.
By Henry of Huntingdon
(?1088-?1157)

AT the high-point of his reign, King Canute ordered his throne to be set upon the seashore as the tide was coming in, and then addressed the rising waters.

‘You and the land on which my throne is standing are subject to me. No one has ever defied my royal commands and gone unpunished.

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No. 317
Gerald Finzi
Anglo-Saxon History
King Harold Godwinson (1066)
The Last English King
The Normans conquered England in 1066, and the country would never be the same again.

IN 1065, the people of Northumbria rose up against their powerful Earl, Tostig Godwinson, the estranged brother of the King of England, Harold Godwinson.

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No. 318
13 thirteen-part story
Thomas Arne and Edvard Grieg and Jean-Baptiste Lully and ten more
Kings and Queens of England
King Alfred the Great (871-899) to King Ethelred the Unready (978-1016)
Kings and Queens: Alfred to Ethelred
England’s rulers from the only one named ‘the Great’, to the king who lost his crown to the Danes.

THE first steps towards a Kingdom of England were taken by Alfred the Great, King of Wessex on the south coast.

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No. 319
John Hebden
Discovery and Invention
The Hat that Changed the World
Young William’s hat caught the eye of Matthew Boulton, and the world was never the same again.

IN 1777, after walking there all the way from Scotland in search of work, twenty-three-year-old William Murdoch sat in the offices of the engineering firm of Boulton and Watt in Smethwick, fiddling nervously with his hat.

Matthew Boulton had to disappoint William, as the firm was not hiring, but to ease the awkwardness remarked on the hat.

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No. 320
Polywords (183)
Make as many words as you can from the letters of a nine-letter word.
Latest: Weir
Added on Sunday January 14th, 2018
Doublets (34)
Turn one word into another, changing just one letter each time.
Latest: Stardust
Quickwords (46)
A mini-crossword of everyday vocabulary and general knowledge.
Triplets (23)
Find one common letter that will turn three words into three new ones.
Latest: Triplet No. 23
Guess these words letter by letter – before the cats are gone!
See how ingenious you can be in combining three randomly chosen words in one sentence.
Compose sentences showing the difference in meaning, grammar or usage between these words.
Practise your basic arithmetic, from multiplation tables to percentages.
Latest: Target Number
Take command of English grammar and composition with these traditional exercises.
Latest: Letters Game
A word search game with a dash of strategy.
From our Archive
Based on ‘A Book of Golden Deeds’ by Charlotte Yonge
(1823-1901)
Two strong and determined men refused to back down.
Lost for seventeen centuries, caught up in a war, and used as a pedestal for a plant pot, this is the world’s oldest surviving song.
By Jane Austen
(1775-1817)
Making friends is, like playing music, not just a matter of natural talent.
In 6th century France, a faithful kitchen servant sold himself into slavery to rescue a kidnapped boy.
Based on the play by Aristophanes
(c. 445-386 BC)
Two men fed up with Athenian politics decide to build a city in the sky.

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Tudor Era (11)
Adam Smith (10)
Polyword ‘News’
Make as many words as you can with the letters below. All your words must be at least four letters long, and must also include the highlighted letter. What’s the nine-letter word?

SEE how many words you can make using the letters below. All your words must be at least 4 letters long, and must include the letter (change).

We found commonly used words, plus one 9-letter word. Can you do better?

Use each letter only once. But if there are e.g. two As, you can used them both.

Don’t count proper nouns such as April, Zeus, or Newcastle (pretty much anything that has to be spelled with a capital letter at the start), or acronyms like HMRC.

Don’t just add -S for plurals or third person singular verbs, e.g. CAT → CATS or SPEAK → SPEAKS.

More Word Games
A word search game with a dash of strategy.
Guess these words letter by letter – before the cats are gone!
Do you know ‘warm covering’ (7 letters), and ‘2,240 lb’ (3 letters)?
Change ROCK into SALT, one letter at a time.
Find the magic letter that can change three words into three different ones.