Tomb Of The King – YouTube

One of the things which struck me with great force as I toured England and Scotland in 1985, and Ireland, England, and Wales in 1990, was the tremendous antiquity in which the very land was steeped. It was awe-inspiring enough to touch Roman brick (!), for person born and raised in a country that things 300 years is “old,” but the heritage of the British Isles goes so much further back than that… I was particularly taken by the barrow-mounds, to which I had been first introduced in fictional form through the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. To actually be face-to-face with true barrows, in all their reality (though without, so far as I know, barrow-wights), was a remarkable experience.

But familiarity breeds contempt, they say; and it was with great sadness that I learned, later in life, that not all in Britain share this American-of-British-ancestry’s passion, respect, and even reverence for a past which reaches back thousands of years, yet retains a strange and mystic continuity with the present. Just as Americans seem to think nothing turning areas of great natural beauty into strip malls or housing developments, it seems that there are interests in Britain that think nothing of driving roads through, or building car-parks on top of, ancient structures that have stood for millennia… including the tombs of prehistoric kings and chieftains.

In this haunting song, Damh the Bard sings of one such barrow. I do not know whether it is intended to be entirely representative, or whether he had a specific site in mind when he wrote it, but either way, he evokes the feelings of sadness and frustration I myself feel when I hear of antiquities — whether ancient Oaks or ancient Barrows — bulldozed for the sake of what we so glibly call “progress.” In hopes that we may someday, as humans, outgrow our childish lack of respect for those who came before, I give you Damh the Bard’s “The Tomb of the King.”

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10 of the Best Medieval Abbeys in Britain

Source: 10 of the Best Medieval Abbeys in Britain

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While I may owe a certain debt, as an Anglican, to King Henry VIII, I can never completely forgive or forget his Dissolution of the Monasteries. That said, they remain if anything even more spiritually evocative in their ruined grandeur than they might if they were still active foundations!

Prince Charles’ letters reveal a quirky, old-fashioned brand of conservatism

The ‘black spider’ letters show that Charles is a good sort of prince

Chaz

Source: Prince Charles’ letters reveal a quirky, old-fashioned brand of conservatism

Okay, I am starting to feel better about the prospect of Charles becoming King when — may the day be long delayed! — Her Majesty enters into her eternal reward.

“Prince Charles is his own kind of conservative: an ecological preservationist, an arch-traditionalist, and a tiller and keeper of the soil, rather than a devotee of capitalistic creative destruction… Prince Charles’ conservatism is characterized by “trusteeship,” rather than the more modern concept of ownership. The latter assumes that the possessor of a property is entitled to extract all its market value, even if it destroys the use of that property and its goods for all posterity. Charles, ever a royal, allies himself to posterity’s interests…”

“‘On a moral and spiritual level, Charles believes that civilization isn’t sustainable unless humanity finds a way to live in balance with nature. For him, climate change is the ultimate judgment on a civilization that has rejected limits and fetishized economic growth and material prosperity over spiritual values.’ [The American Conservative]”

Proof positive, as if any were needed, that traditional / conservative values and sensibilities are by no means incompatible with — still less opposed to — a robust concern for this good earth on which we live, and on which we are utterly dependent for our continued survival and well-being.

A few more quotes from the article cited:

“The monarchy’s sympathizers might say that it is precisely because Charles’ position is partly insulated from corporate interests and moral fads that he is able to take a longer view of issues related to England’s countryside, its architectural patrimony, its historical sites, and the environment.

“Far from revealing an overweening royal authority or a disconnected left-wing scion, Charles’ letters show a gentle, far-seeing, if unfashionable monarch. In a sense, Charles quietly exercises the highest role a monarch can play in the modern administrative state. He is an insistent voice for tradition’s value to posterity, and an advocate for the men (and fish) that the market, or the bureaucratic state, would overlook and destroy.”

God save Prince Charles!