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Posts tagged History (406)
Nos 321 to 330
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Franz Liszt
Modern History
Queen Charlotte’s Christmas Tree
Cromwell’s killjoys almost silenced the English Christmas, but thanks to a royal family tradition the message is still being proclaimed.

IN 1800, King George III’s German-born wife, Charlotte, set up a decorated Christmas tree at a children’s party.

Her grand-daughter Queen Victoria recalled that a candle-lit tree, hung with sugar ornaments, subsequently became a feature of the royal family’s Christmas.

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No. 321
Richard Jones
Lives of the Saints
Anglo-Saxon Britain (410-1066)
The Law of the Innocents
St Adamnán worked tirelessly to secure protection, rights and dignity for the women of Ireland.

IN 7th century Ireland, the lot of women was unenviable. Serving women were a form of coinage: fines were calculated in cumals, or maidservants, each equivalent to three milk-cows.

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No. 322
George Frideric Handel
Lives of the Saints
The Dove and the Flame
Elfric, Abbot of Eynsham in the reign of Æthelred the Unready, reflects on two appearances of the Holy Spirit in the New Testament.
By
Elfric of Eynsham

WHY did the Holy Ghost come in the form of fire over the Apostles, but over Christ in the likeness of a dove?

Because Christ in his humanity was meek and harmless.

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No. 323
John Playford
Christian Customs
King George I (1714-1727)
The Return of Plum Pudding
The Puritans said it was unfit for God-fearing men, but George I thought it fit for a King.

RICH and luxurious plum pudding was banned as “unfit for God-fearing people” by the republican Puritans in 1647, prompting riots in Kent.

Christmas celebrations returned with Charles II in 1660, and in 1714 King George I requested plum pudding for his first Christmas in England, making it fashionable once again.

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No. 324
Byzantine Chant
Lives of the Saints
Roman Empire (Byzantine Era) (330 - 1453)
St John of Damascus
John’s enduring influence is evident today in the rich sights and sounds of Christian liturgy.

MANSUR Bin Sargun was a Christian in the Syrian court of the Byzantine Emperor Heraclius the Great. After the Muslims took Syria from the Byzantines, Mansur’s son Sarjun served the new Caliph in the same capacity.

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No. 325
Vassilis Tsabropoulos
Lives of the Saints
Roman Empire (Byzantine Era) (330 - 1453)
The Miracle of St John of the Caves
The story of an unexpected escape through the heart of a hill.

BACK in the days of the Byzantine Empire, the people of Paros heard that pirates were yet again patrolling the coast of their island.

As it was the Feast of St John the Evangelist, they ran to a remote monastery dedicated to the saint, shut themselves in, and offered fervent prayers.

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No. 326
George Frideric Handel
Classical History
The Season of ‘Goodwill’
‘Goodwill’ was on everyone’s lips, but the Roman Emperor and the God of Israel had very different ideas about it.

SHORTLY before the death of Herod the Great, the Roman Emperor Augustus invited all the loyal inhabitants of the Empire to sign an ‘assurance of goodwill’ toward him and his government. This poll later inspired his fulsome Senate to declare him the ‘Father of Rome’.

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No. 327
Mediaeval History
The Disaster of the White Ship
The loss of the heir to the throne threw England into crisis.

IN 1120, when William Adelin was sixteen, his father King Henry I took him across the Channel to be married to Matilda of Anjou, daughter of a powerful rival in northern France.

After the wedding, Henry went on ahead, leaving his son to sail home in the White Ship, the newest and fastest vessel in the royal fleet.

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No. 328
Sir William Sterndale Bennett
Discovery and Invention
Queen Victoria (1837-1901)
Bird’s Custard
Alfred Bird’s wife could eat neither eggs nor yeast. So being a Victorian, Alfred put his thinking-cap on.

MRS Alfred Bird’s favourite dessert was baked custard, made by beating together sugar, milk, and eggs. Unfortunately, Mrs Bird could not tolerate eggs.

So in 1837, using cornflour, vanilla and natural colouring from his Chemist’s shop in Bull Street, Birmingham, Alfred concocted an egg-free custard for his wife.

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No. 329
York Bowen
Discovery and Invention
King Edward VII (1901-1910)
The Fleming Valve
A Victorian children’s book inspired the birth of modern electronics.

FANNY Umphelby’s ‘Child’s Guide To Knowledge’ can have had few readers more devoted, or more distinguished in later life, than Ambrose Fleming.

Her collection of scientific facts sparked his long career at University College, London, and at the Marconi Company, assisting in the first transatlantic radio transmissions.

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No. 330
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 Mark Twain
(1835-1910)
Mark Twain’s attention was drawn off people-watching for a moment by an extraordinarily lifelike machine.
Napoleon’s six-year-long campaign to bring Spain and Portugal into his united Europe was frustrated by Arthur Wellesley.
Florence used her logical mind and society connections to save thousands of lives in the Crimean War.
Based on a short story by Amy Walton
(1845-1925)
Part One. Ruth Lorimer’s strangely comfortless life changes when she finds a scruffy little cat on the stairs, but not everyone is pleased.
Based on an account by Saint Bede of Jarrow
(672-735)
Driven out of Northumbria, Bishop Wilfrid goes to the south coast and saves a kingdom from starvation.

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Adam Smith (10)
Polyword ‘Inlet’
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 ‘a river, part of the Bristol-London waterway’ (6 letters), and ‘e.g. D minor’ (3 letters)?
Changing one letter at a time, see if you can start with NEAT and finish with TIDY.
Find the magic letter that can change three words into three different ones.