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Nos 31 to 40
1 2 3 4 5 6 67
2 two-part story
George Frideric Handel
Tales from the Bible
Gideon’s Snare
While spying out the enemy’s camp, Gideon hears something which fills him with renewed confidence.

DRIVING the Midianites from Manasseh and other tribes of Israel was weary, hungry work for just three hundred men, and not everyone was appreciative. The Ephraimites complained that although Gideon relied on them to capture some of the Midianite leaders, he had not invited them to join the fight from the start.

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No. 31
John Field
Classical History
Mark Antony Catches a Kipper
The surprisingly sensitive Roman commander was hoping to impress a girl with his angling skills.
By Plutarch
(?46-120)

HE was fishing once, and had bad luck, and was vexed at it because Cleopatra was there to see. He therefore ordered his fishermen to dive down and secretly fasten to his hook some fish that had been previously caught, and pulled up two or three of them.

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No. 32
Ralph Vaughan Williams
The Great War
King George V (1910-1936)
Edith Cavell
The experienced nurse could not stop saving lives, even at the cost of her own.

IN 1907 Edith Cavell, a forty-two-year-old nurse and former governess, went to Belgium to help Dr Antoine Depage establish a training school for nurses. Within four years, she had three hospitals and over thirty schools under her care, and had founded a new medical journal.

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No. 33
John Tavener
The Second World War
King George VI (1936-1952)
The Day of ‘No’
On October 28th, 1940, the Kingdom of Greece surprised everyone by refusing to become part of the German war machine.

IN the small hours of October 28th, 1940, the Italian Ambassador to Greece, Emanuele Grazzi, was at the German Embassy in Athens, following a party. As the clock struck four, he presented the Greek Prime Minister Ioannis Metaxas with an ultimatum from the Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini.

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No. 34
2 two-part story
Edward Elgar
Greek and Roman Myths
Heracles and the Garden of the Hesperides
Two of Heracles’s labours are declared void, so to make up the number he is sent to find the Garden of the Hesperides.

WITH the cattle of Geryon, Heracles thought he had completed the ten labours appointed by the oracle. But Eurystheus judged that Heracles had had help with the Hydra and the Augean stables, and they did not count.

Instead, Heracles was commissioned to bring home three apples from a sacred tree growing the Garden of the Hesperides, daughters of the Night.

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No. 35
2 two-part story
George Frideric Handel
Lives of the Saints
Roman Empire (Byzantine Era) (330 - 1453)
The Emperor and the Nun
The young Roman Emperor Theophilus backed away from marriage to the formidable Cassiani, but he could not forget her.

WHEN sixteen-year-old Theophilus succeeded his father Michael II as Roman Emperor in 829, the boy’s stepmother Euphrosyne organised a ‘bride show’: Theophilus must choose a wife from among the Empire’s most eligible young ladies, by handing a golden apple to one lucky winner.

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No. 36
2 two-part story
Johann Baptist Cramer and Francesco Geminiani
Mediaeval History
Edward the Exile
Two young English princes were banished to the court of Yaroslav the Wise, and one returned to claim the crown.

IN 1016, the Danish King Cnut the Great took the English crown from Edmund Ironside, son of Ethelred the Unready, at the Battle of Assandun. Edmund’s two infant sons, Edmund and Edward, were banished to Sweden; Cnut’s plan was to have them assassinated, but the boys were smuggled to safety at the court of Stephen I of Hungary.

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No. 37
2 two-part story
Modest Mussorgsky
Mediaeval History
The Conversion of Vladimir the Great
A succession of religious leaders came to Kiev, hoping to win the wild barbarian Prince to their cause.

PRINCE Vladimir of Kiev was a superb general, but not without his faults. He was given to drink, kept several wives and hundreds of sex slaves, and encouraged the people to sacrifice their sons and daughters to his idol gods. And all this despite having a Christian grandmother, Olga.

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No. 38
Johann Christian Bach
Mediaeval History
King William I (1066-1087) to King Stephen (1135-1154)
The Matildas of England
For a hundred years after William the Conqueror came to England, four strong women named Matilda shaped the nation’s history.

MATILDA of Flanders was the wife of William, Duke of Normandy, who snatched the English throne from Harold Godwinson at the Battle of Hastings in 1066.

William’s third son, Henry I, married another Matilda, the daughter of King Malcolm III of Scotland, who herself was a great-granddaughter of King Edmund ‘Ironside’, who lost the English throne to Cnut in 1016.

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No. 39
Johann Baptist Cramer
Music and Musicians
King George III (1760-1820) to Queen Victoria (1837-1901)
Glorious John
JB Cramer was one of the finest pianists of his day, though his reverence for Mozart made his own music more popular in the drawing room than the concert hall.

BY 1784, thirteen-year-old Johann Baptist Cramer was such a naturally gifted pianist that Muzio Clementi, his distinguished teacher, performed a duet with him in public. Four years later, Johann toured Europe, and again in 1799, attracting the notice of both Haydn and Beethoven, who declared him the finest pianist of the day.

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No. 40
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
By John Locke
(1632-1704)
Some people are not more equal than others, nor are they entitled to more liberty.
Alfred Bird’s wife could eat neither eggs nor yeast. So being a Victorian, Alfred put his thinking-cap on.
The mayor and bishop of Zakynthos went to extraordinary lengths to protect the most vulnerable people of their island.
In 1910, Constantine Zervakos, a young monk from the Greek island of Paros, found himself charged with espionage.
Based on a story by Edith Nesbit
(1858-1924)
A tortoiseshell laments his hard life among heartless humans.

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Tudor Era (11)
Adam Smith (10)
Polyword ‘Fresh’
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 ‘cleansing bar’ (4 letters), and ‘Doncaster horse-race’ (2,5 letters)?
Changing one letter at a time, see if you can start with NOTE and finish with BOOK.
Find the magic letter that can change three words into three different ones.