"I hope this finds you well. I do not like cats. —Hunca Munca"
Beatrix Potter. Four miniature autograph letters to Miss Marjorie Moller, dated March 12, 1912.
Miss M. Moller
Dear Miss Marjorie,
I hope you will like the next book there will be lots of rabbits! but poor Mopsy’s story is too melancholy to write, she was killed by a weasel, & buried in the little moss grave under the wall. But there are plenty of rabbits still.
Miss M. Moller
My dear Miss Moller,
I am pleased to hear that you like the F. Bunnies, because some people do think there has been too much bunnies, and there is going to be some more! My family will appear again in the next book [The Tale of Mr. Tod]; and Cottontail is put in because you asked after her which me & Cottontail thanks you for kind inquiries, & remain
Dear Miss Marjorie
I hope this finds you well. I do not like cats.
Miss M. Moller
My wife Mrs Flopsy Bunny has replied to your inquiries, because Miss Potter will attend to nothing but hatching spring chickens; there is another hatch chipping this evening. And she is supposed to be doing a Book, about us and the Fox; but she does not get on; neither has she answered all her Xmas letters yet.
Thomas Tallis’ Spem In Alium sung by the Tallis Scholars CD: The Tallis Scholars sing Thomas Tallis / Spem In Alium Disclaimer: I do not own this video.
Spem in alium (Latin for “Hope in any other”) is a 40-part Renaissance motet by Thomas Tallis, composed in c. 1570 for eight choirs of five voices each, widely considered to be the greatest piece of English early music. Sir Peter Maxwell Davies has described it as “A crowning glory of our civilization” GORGEOUS Piece and one of my all time favorites. Listen to the melodies as they blend into an angelic and heavenly song.
The original Latin text of the motet is from a response (at Matins, for the 3rd Lesson, during the V week of September), in the Sarum Rite, adapted from the Book of Judith. Today the response appears in the Divine Office of the Latin rite in the Office of Readings (formerly called Matins) following the first lesson on Tuesday of the 29th Week of the Year.
Spem in alium nunquam habui Praeter in te, Deus Israel Qui irasceris et propitius eris et omnia peccata hominum in tribulatione dimittis Domine Deus Creator caeli et terrae respice humilitatem nostram
I have never put my hope in any other but in You, O God of Israel who can show both anger and graciousness, and who absolves all the sins of suffering man Lord God, Creator of Heaven and Earth be mindful of our lowliness
This is cool. The top image shows a drawing on parchment from the 1260s. It is one of the earliest existing architectural drawings and depicts the façade, or front, of Strasbourg Cathedral in France. The “blueprint” almost stands a meter tall. What’s so special about this medieval artifact is that it still exists: single sheets rarely survive from the Middle Ages (with the exception of charters). Equally special is that we can compare the drawing to the real thing (lower pic): it is not hard to recognizes the big round window in both drawing and real building - note also the door underneath it and the pointy window to the right. How great that we are given a peek on the medieval architect’s drawing board. Ironically, he did not live to see his creation built, because the cathedral was finished in the 14th century.
Pic: Musée de l’Oeuvre Notre-Dame, Strasbourg, Inv. no. 2. More about the drawing here. The photograph is from this blog.
The real crisis came near the end of her life, resulting in a period of agoraphobia and psychosis; she wrote her way through it in “We Have Always Lived in the Castle.” In that novel, Jackson brilliantly isolates the two aspects in her psyche into two odd, damaged sisters: one hypersensitive and afraid, unable to leave the house, the other a sort of squalid demon prankster who may or may not have murdered the rest of her family for her fragile sister’s sake. For me, it is that unique and dreamlike book, rather than “The Lottery,” that stands as her masterpiece.
“It was almost midday of November 7, 1492 when a “gruesome thunderbolt and long lasting roar” was heard coming from the sky and a rock impacted on a field, producing a crater “half a man length” deep. Soon curious onlookers gathered around the hole and with the help of some strong men the rock from the sky was lifted on a cart and transported to the nearby Austrian city of Ensisheim. The shooting star became soon known as the “thunderstone of Ensisheim”. The thunderstone of Ensisheim is today the oldest known recorded (and still preserved) meteorite in Europe.”