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Nos 41 to 50
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 67
Johann Baptist Cramer
Poets and Poetry
The Empire Within
Poet Percy Bysshe Shelley says that the pinnacle of political achievement is the government not of others, but of ourselves.
By Percy Bysshe Shelley
(1792-1822)

NOR happiness, nor majesty, nor fame,
Nor peace, nor strength, nor skill in arms or arts,
Shepherd those herds whom tyranny makes tame;
Verse echoes not one beating of their hearts,
History is but the shadow of their shame,
Art veils her glass, or from the pageant starts
As to oblivion their blind millions fleet,
Staining that Heaven with obscene imagery
Of their own likeness.

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No. 41
Muzio Clementi
Poets and Poetry
Autumn: A Dirge
Poet Percy Shelley calls on November’s sister months to watch by the graveside of the dead Year.
By Percy Bysshe Shelley
(1792-1822)

THE warm sun is failing, the bleak wind is wailing,
The bare boughs are sighing, the pale flowers are dying,
And the Year
On the earth her death-bed, in a shroud of leaves dead,
Is lying.
Come, Months, come away,
From November to May,
In your saddest array;
Follow the bier
Of the dead cold Year,
And like dim shadows watch by her sepulchre.

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No. 42
Muzio Clementi
Poets and Poetry
To Autumn
Poet John Keats speaks of the beauties of Autumn, her colours, her sounds and her rich harvest.
By John Keats
(1795-1821)

SEASON of mists and mellow fruitfulness!
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel.

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No. 43
William Byrd
Character and Conduct
Queen Elizabeth I (1558-1603)
‘Thy Necessity is Yet Greater than Mine’
Elizabethan courtier and soldier Sir Philip Sidney shows that a nobleman can also be a gentleman.
By Fulke Greville, Baron Brooke
(1554-1628)

THE weather being misty, their troops fell fatally within shot of their [the Spanish Army’s] muskets, which were laid in ambush within their own trenches. An unfortunate hand out of those trenches brake the bone of Sir Philip’s thigh with a musket-shot. The horse he rode upon, was rather furiously choleric, than bravely proud, and so forced him to forsake the field.

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No. 44
Sir Arthur Sullivan
Anglo-Saxon History
Anglo-Saxon Britain (410-1066)
The Bishop and the Chatterbox
One week into a Lenten retreat with the Bishop of Hexham, a boy’s miserable life is turned right around.
Based on an account by Saint Bede of Jarrow
(672-735)

DURING the Lenten fast, Bishop John and a few monks used to retire to a cottage in woodland across the Tyne, beside a graveyard dedicated to St Michael the Archangel. One year, John persuaded a young lad to stay with them whose head was all scabs and scales and sorry wisps of hair, and who had never been able to speak a word.

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No. 45
2 two-part story
George Frideric Handel
Christian Customs
Michaelmas
A celebration of St Michael, captain of heaven’s angel host, courteous warrior, and healer.

“THE Michaelmas daisies,” says the old rhyme, “among dead weeds, Bloom for St Michael's valorous deeds.”

Michael’s valorous deeds are described in the Bible. St John tells us that there was war in heaven, and Michael and his angels fought against the devil and his angels, and cast them down.

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No. 46
2 two-part story
Piotr Ilich Tchaikovsky
Stories in Short
The Wolf, the Bear and Cat Ivanovitch
A faithful but unprepossessing pet is turned out of hearth and home.

ONCE upon a time, a peasant decided that his ginger cat, a battle-scarred mouser with one ear, was not the sort of pet to be seen with. So he popped old Tom in a sack, and dumped him in the forest.

Tom clawed his way out of his sack, and set off to explore his new world.

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No. 47
2 two-part story
Gustav Holst
Discovery and Invention
Queen Victoria (1837-1901)
Japan’s First Railway
As Japan’s ruling shoguns resist the tide of progress, a Nagasaki-based Scottish entrepreneur steps in.

FOR over two centuries, Japan isolated herself from the rest of the world, a policy vigorously pursued by the Tokugawa shogunate that had sidelined the Emperors. But from 1853, zealous American, Russian and British merchants and their modern wares were grudgingly admitted into selected Japanese ports.

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No. 48
Ethel Smyth
Music and Musicians
The Free-Wheeler
Composer Ethel Smyth buys a new-fangled ladies’ bicycle, and scandalises the neighbours.
By Ethel Smyth
(1858-1944)

IN the Illustrated London News were to be seen pictures of wild women of the usual unprepossessing pioneer type riding about Epping Forest, and I at once decided to buy a bicycle.

Aunts, cousins, and friends were horrified ... never has the word indelicate been bandied about with more righteous conviction. But my mother said this was perfect nonsense.

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No. 49
2 two-part story
Sir Arthur Sullivan
Extracts from Literature
Alice gets an English Lesson
Alice meets Humpty Dumpty, and it turns out that she has been using words wrong all her life.
By Lewis Carroll
(1832-1898)
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No. 50
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 Jane Austen
(1775-1817)
Louisa Musgrove thought she had hit on a sure method of winning Captain Wentworth’s affections.
By Charles Dickens
(1812-1870)
English lawyer Sydney Carton goes to the guillotine in place of a French aristocrat.
By Samuel Smiles
(1812-1904)
Benjamin Disraeli did not make a promising start to his Parliamentary career - but he did start with a promise.
Both Rudyard Kipling and the Royal Navy saw Greek sovereignty as a universal symbol of freedom.
A young George Stephenson takes responsibility for the team spirit at Black Callerton mine.

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History (406)
Polywords (183)
Georgian Era (112)
Fiction (84)
Quickwords (46)
Doublets (34)
Triplets (23)
Railways (23)
Stuart Era (17)
Tudor Era (11)
Adam Smith (10)
Polyword ‘Rune’
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 ‘street lined with tall buildings or trees’ (6 letters), and ‘shed’ (3 letters)?
Changing one letter at a time, see if you can start with TOWN and finish with CITY.
Find the magic letter that can change three words into three different ones.