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All Posts (664)
Nos 641 to 650
Jan Ladislav Dussek
Lives of the Saints
Roman Empire (Byzantine Era) (330 - 1453)
Cyril and Hypatia
A ‘Christian’ mob kidnapped and murdered a much-loved professor of mathematics - for her politics.

IN 415, the governor of Alexandria, Orestes, imposed new regulations on Jewish dancing festivals. Tensions in the city became strained, as Christians, inconvenienced by the same legislation, were angry with both the governor and the Jews.

Then one Christian, named Ammonius, threw a rock at the Governor and wounded him, and was put to death with torture.

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No. 641
John Garth
Discovery and Invention
Mrs Clements
Mrs Clements of Durham is not a household name, but the product she invented is.

IN 1390, Richard II’s chef included a recipe for mustard in his book The Forme of Cury. Monks on Lindisfarne in Northumberland were grinding their own mustard a century later, and Tewkesbury in Gloucestershire was an early centre of the trade.

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No. 642
2 two-part story
Felix Mendelssohn and Charles Villiers Stanford
Discovery and Invention
Sir Titus Salt
His alpaca-wool mills near Bradford proved the social benefits of private enterprise in the right hands.

ON a trip to Liverpool, shortly after taking over his father’s wool business in 1833, Titus Salt stumbled across some bales of alpaca-wool, then little-known in England. His father forbade him to buy them, but he did, and by 1850 his business had outgrown its Bradford premises.

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No. 643
Thomas Erskine, 6th Earl of Kellie
Discovery and Invention
The Ladder with Twenty-Four Rungs
The Duke of Argyll was pleasantly surprised to find one of his gardeners reading a learned book of mathematics - in Latin.

THE Duke of Argyll was puzzled one day to find a copy of Newton’s recently-published ‘Principia’ lying on the grass. He summoned a passing gardener, an eighteen-year-old named Edward Stone, and instructed him to return the wandering book to his library.

Edward, however, replied that it was his own personal copy.

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No. 644
George Butterworth
Discovery and Invention
The Science of Salix
Edward Stone wondered if the willow tree might have more in common with the Peruvian cinchona tree than just its damp habitat.

THE bark of the willow tree was used to treat fever as far back as the days of Hippocrates in the 4th century BC, but Western medicine had forgotten it until Edward Stone, walking one day past a willow tree, casually nibbled on a chip of wood.

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No. 645
Ignaz Moscheles
Music and Musicians
Ignaz Moscheles
Moscheles taught his adopted country how to write enchanting music for decades to come.
Music by Ignaz Moscheles
(1794-1870)

IGNAZ Moscheles was born in Prague, and studied at the Conservatory there. He was soon in demand, and his first concert in England came in 1822.

The British countryside charmed him, and he admitted that “I feel more and more at home in England”. After his marriage in 1825, Moscheles settled in London, where his reputation grew.

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No. 646
Francesco Geminiani
Liberty and Prosperity
‘No dog exchanges bones with another’
How do we get the help of millions of people we don’t know? Only by trade.
By Adam Smith
(1723-1790)

NOBODY ever saw a dog make a fair and deliberate exchange of one bone for another with another dog.

A spaniel endeavours by a thousand attractions to engage the attention of its master who is at dinner, when it wants to be fed by him. Man has not time, however, to do this upon every occasion.

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No. 647
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor
Music and Musicians
Queen Victoria (1837-1901) to King George V (1910-1936)
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor
A gifted composer of classical music in the romantic tradition, admired by Stanford, Elgar, and Sullivan.
Music by Samuel Coleridge Taylor
(1875-1912)

AT the age of five, Samuel Taylor began violin lessons with a local music-teacher in Croydon. Fifteen years later, he won a scholarship to the Royal College of Music, where he changed course to study composition, under Charles Villiers Stanford.

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No. 648
George Frideric Handel
Tales from the Bible
Cain and Abel
Smarting for his outraged ‘rights’, Cain lost his reason — but not God’s pity and love.

CAIN and his brother Abel, the sons of Adam and Eve, were both farmers. Cain grew crops, whereas Abel was a herdsman.

Abel made an offering to God from among his best animals, but Cain’s offering was rejected because he used crops that were no good for anything else.

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No. 649
John Stanley
Tales from the Bible
Daniel in the Lions’ Den
The King who condemned him to the den of lions felt far worse about it than Daniel did.

KING Nebuchadnezzar’s toadying counsellors came to him, and said that they wanted him to issue a decree. For thirty days no one (it should say) may appeal to any god except the King himself.

But Daniel carried on his daily prayers to the God of Israel.

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No. 650
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
A Japanese swordsman confronts a Russian monk for... actually, he’s not really quite sure.
By Saint Bede of Jarrow
(672-735)
St Bede explains how the Exodus and the Ten Commandments are related to Easter and Whitsuntide.
Heracles shows his capacity for thinking outside the box, but spoils it by trying to be just a little bit too clever.
King James II was forced off the throne in favour of his daughter Mary, and a new English constitution was born.
Based on a
Byzantine Tradition
The Virgin Mary and her son team up to get the best out of some careless monks.

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History (406)
Polywords (183)
Georgian Era (111)
Fiction (84)
Quickwords (46)
Doublets (34)
Railways (23)
Triplets (23)
Stuart Era (17)
Tudor Era (11)
Adam Smith (10)
Polyword ‘Truly, Madly’
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 ‘conclusive evidence’ (5 letters), and ‘perceptive realisation’ (6 letters)?
Changing one letter at a time, see if you can start with SPIT and finish with FIRE.
Find the magic letter that can change three words into three different ones.