On July 31, 1485, William Caxton first printed Sir Thomas Mallory's Morte d'Arthur. Five hundred thirty seven years ago today. Only seven years before Christopher Columbus voyaged to the New World.. I believe in the importance of history. And so, therefore, it's surely OK to recapitulate a post from a few years ago (even if… Continue reading On This Day in 1485
The church of my childhood was St. Mary’s, Handsworth, just outside Birmingham, in England. Although I probably attended services there only a few dozen times, while we stayed with Granny and Grandpa during my father’s infrequent “leave” periods from the Colonial Service in Nigeria, it was a bulwark of stability in my life. Like the… Continue reading The Power, and the Glory, of the Word
The medieval ideal brought together two things which have no natural tendency to gravitate towards one another. It brought them together for that very reason. It taught humility and forbearance to the great warrior because everyone knew by experience how much he usually needed that lesson. It demanded valour of the urbane and modest man… Continue reading Chivalry as “Art” Rather Than “Nature”
There have been so many posts on the Internet lately, and many more over time, about relations and dynamics between the sexes, the state of Western Civilization, the role of men and women in it, and how soon the handcart we’re all bouncing around in will reach the gates of Hell (not long, FYI), that… Continue reading On Household Relations and the Natural Order of Things
Thomas Mallare, of Newbold Revel in the County of Warwickshire, died 550 years ago on March 14, 1471. He was born fifty-six years before that, with a bit of a silver spoon in his mouth, to a Midlands Justice of the Peace and his heiress wife. Mallare had an uneventful childhood, was knighted in 1441… Continue reading An Unlikely Troubadour; An Unexpected Gift
. . . from Geoffrey Chaucer, who, as with so many other things, is often credited with starting it all. His dream vision poem, The Parliament of Fowls, was written about 1380 and begins with the narrator (who seems not to know how to love, has perhaps never been in love, and will very likely never… Continue reading Happy Seynt Valentyn’s Day!
I’ve long thought that some of my better and more interesting posts are ones that I don’t think about much in advance, but which come to me spontaneously, or as a result of something I fall over on the way to looking up other things. (I do realize that your mileage may vary on this… Continue reading Patient Griselda: Perfect Wife, or Credulous Fool?
The other day, I ordered a book from Amazon. It was available in a Kindle format, so I pressed a couple of buttons, and, Wallah!, as they say around here, it was on my device within seconds. Now I don’t mind reading books on a Kindle, and I’m well aware of the amount of shelf space I’ve… Continue reading The Write Stuff
I know many of you know them by heart. I’ve seen some of you say so, on Ricochet, over the past nine years. At some point in your lives, you probably had them thrust at you; you might have struggled through them; maybe you cheated with the Cliffs Notes; perhaps you said you couldn’t possibly… Continue reading Occasional Quote of the Day: The First Eighteen Lines
Imagine yourself, if you will, as an inhabitant of late 14th-century England. You sit somewhere at the lower end of the hierarchy with the king at the top and the villeins and serfs at the bottom. If you’re a man, you’re very likely a farmer, and you and your family live in a two-room (if… Continue reading Reality TV, 1387 Edition