Medieval peasants vs people today – on the lighter side!

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As an academically-trained – and lifelong avocational – medievalist, I can say there is a lot of truth to this! True, there were plenty of issues in that era that could be lethal, from plague to war. But now it’s cancer, degenerative heart disease, and (in many parts of the world) still war… 🙄

In fact, most of the things that killed people – and that account for the “lower life expectancy” (which is an average) of medieval people during that age – were most threatening to children. If you once attained adulthood, you had a pretty fair chance of living just about as long as we do now!


(To be fair, one exception to this was childbirth, which remained very dangerous to women right up until fairly recent times. Young women are more likely to be resilient and avoid or survive potential issues with childbirth, which is one reason why women married and bore children much earlier, on average, than they do today.)

The largest ever Bronze Age hoard in London has been discovered | HeritageDaily – Archaeology News

The largest ever Bronze Age hoard to be discovered in London, the third largest of its kind in the UK, has been unearthed in Havering.

Source: The largest ever Bronze Age hoard in London has been discovered – HeritageDaily – Archaeology News

“A total of 453 bronze objects dating between c.900 and c.800 BC have been uncovered during a planned archaeological investigation, with weapons and tools including axe heads, spearheads, fragments of swords, daggers and knives found alongside some other unusual objects, which are rarely found in the UK.”

Fascinating! Unfortunately, not much (if anything) is said about the “unusual objects, which are rarely found in the UK.” Hope more information is revealed, as the project continues!

Piers Morgan: Populism Is Rising Because Liberals Have Become Unbearable | Video | RealClearPolitics

 

“Populism is rising because liberals have become unbearable. In my core, I’m probably more liberal than not although fundamentally I see myself as a journalist and I like to see both sides and I can argue both sides of all these things, but liberals have become utterly, pathetically illiberal and it is a massive problem.”

Source: Piers Morgan: Populism Is Rising Because Liberals Have Become Unbearable | Video | RealClearPolitics

Couple of thoughts on this: first, I’m not a big fan of Piers Morgan, but he’s an intelligent man, and he’s gotten less objectionable since getting back to the UK. Maybe he’s seeing some things that he couldn’t see as clearly, here in the US? Or maybe it’s just like my father used to say: “Even a stopped clock is right twice a day”…? I dunno. But he’s right about this!

Not all populists are alt-right or far-right or whatever you want to call it, by any means. Most are just ordinary folks who are tired of seeing their own people being crapped on by privileged, entitled elites who claim that the ordinary people are the “privileged” ones. But I’ve said since the 2016 Presidential campaign that maybe the alt-right are antibodies for Antifa, cultural Marxists, and their ilk.

As a historian, I would say that you don’t get something like what happened in Germany in the 1930s because of people like Trump. You get it because of people like Antifa, and their apologists in the media, academia, and so on, until finally ordinary folks get sick and tired of it, and either hit back, or throw their support behind people who are willing to hit back. Continue reading “Piers Morgan: Populism Is Rising Because Liberals Have Become Unbearable | Video | RealClearPolitics”

Three books added to my reading list

 

 

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It is only occasionally that The Anglophilic Anglican writes book reviews, and to post on books I have not yet read is unprecedented. But these are three that not only pique my interest, but which I feel may turn out to be important reads. If I am right, I shall review them after I’ve read them! But for now, I’m simply sharing my interest, with the thought that they may prove of interest to my readers, too. As usual, the italicized, indented sections of text are quotes, in this case from the relevant Amazon listings:

Andrew Willard Jones: Before Church and State: A Study of Social Order in the Sacramental Kingdom of St. Louis IX (2017).

Before Church and State: A Study of Social Order in the Sacramental Kingdom of St. Louis IX by Andrew Willard Jones explores in great detail the “problem of Church and State” in thirteenth-century France. It argues that while the spiritual and temporal powers existed, they were not parallel structures attempting to govern the same social space in a contest over sovereignty. Rather, the spiritual and the temporal powers were wrapped up together in a differentiated and sacramental world, and both included the other as aspects of their very identity. The realm was governed not by proto-absolutist institutions, but rather by networks of friends that cut across lay/clerical lines. Ultimately, the king’s “fullness of power” and the papacy’s “fullness of power” came together to govern a single social order.

Before Church and State reconstructs this social order through a detailed examination of the documentary evidence, arguing that the order was fundamentally sacramental and that it was ultimately congruent with contemporary incarnational and trinitarian theologies and the notions of proper order that they supported. Because of this, modern categories of secular politics cannot be made to capture its essence but rather paint always a distorted portrait in modernity’s image.

In both my B.A. studies – in which I pursued a self-designed major in medieval studies, including history, literature, and philosophy – and my Masters work in early and medieval Christianity, one thing that was a given was the perennial tension, sometimes struggle, and sometimes conflict, between Church and State. It wasn’t something that was defended; it didn’t need to be. It was simply a foundational, underlying assumption.

But even then, I caught glimpses hinting that there might be more to the story; Continue reading “Three books added to my reading list”

The German National Anthem (Deutschlandlied) | Germany Tourism and Travel / Everything about Germany

Source: The Germany National Anthem (Deutschlandlied) – Germany Tourism and Travel by Everything about Germany

The site notes that although “nationalism is unfairly, and incorrectly, linked to Nazism (the U.S., for instance, has been heavily nationalistic since its birth, and has been the most ardent defender of true liberty and justice for all), Germany itself has a long, rich history outside of the Hitler era.” Indeed!

In fact, the Deutschlandlied itself was written at a time of considerable liberal, even revolutionary, ferment, as German liberal nationalists pushed for unification of the many German kingdoms, principalities, and duchies (at a time when the nation-state was seen to be more liberal and progressive than ancient kingdoms). In fact, the line that seems the most grossly militaristic –

“Germany, Germany, over all: over everything in the world!”

– actually represents a plea for Germans of all states, from Prussia to Bavaria, to place their common unity above merely local concerns. But this is hardly the first song to be misunderstood, when heard out of context! Of course, some of the places listed as being part of “Greater Germany” are part of other countries, now. But territorial borders were a good deal more flexible, in the mid-19th century…

In any case, it’s difficult not to like a song that contains affirmations of

“German women, German loyalty,
German beer, and German song!”

English translation (variations exist):

Germany, Germany over all
Over everything in the world!
When it comes to protecting and defending,
Our unity unites us.
From the Maas to the Memel,
From the Etsch to the Belt:
Germany, Germany over all
Over everything in the world!
Germany, Germany over all
Over everything in the world!

German wives and fidelity,
German wine and melody,
Shall all persevere in the world.
Their fair and ancient tone,
Resounds in us our noble goal
Throughout our entire lives.
German women, German loyalty,
German beer, and German song!
German women, German loyalty,
German beer, and German song!

Unity, justice, and liberty
For the Fatherland!
Let us all strive for that,
In brotherhood with heart and hand!
Unity, justice, and liberty
Are the foundation for happiness:
Bloom in the radiance of this happiness,
Flourish, O Fatherland!
Bloom in the radiance of this happiness,
Flourish, O Fatherland!

Britain’s equivalent to Tutankhamun found in Southend-on-Sea | UK news | The Guardian

https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/bd89f32ccef23e671dd0e21c1ddba973950264e5/104_130_5232_3870/master/5232.jpg?width=1140&quality=85&auto=format&fit=max&s=b3a1833d5f8abc1bbbf4c688c277863c

Burial chamber of a wealthy nobleman in Prittlewell shows Anglo-Saxon Essex in new light

Source: Britain’s equivalent to Tutankhamun found in Southend-on-Sea | UK news | The Guardian

The title is a little click-bait-ish; the article itself points out only that “it could be seen as a British equivalent to Tutankhamun’s tomb, although different in a number of ways.” Nonetheless, a fascinating find!

As the article also comments, the site was discovered in 2003, as the result of a proposal to widen a road, but “it is only now, after years of painstaking investigation by more than 40 specialists, that a fuller picture of the extraordinary nature of the find is emerging.”

Of greatest interest to me, as The Anglophilic Anglican:

“… scientific dating now suggests the burial was in the late-6th century, about 580… Gold foil crosses were found in the grave which indicate he was a Christian, a fact which has also surprised historians.

“Sue Hirst, Mola’s Anglo-Saxon burial expert, said that date was remarkably early for the adoption of Christianity in England, coming before Augustine’s mission to convert the country from paganism.

But it could be explained because Seaxa’s mother Ricula was sister to king Ethelbert of Kent who was married to a Frankish Christian princess called Bertha. ‘Ricula would have brought close knowledge of Christianity from her sister-in-law.'”

However it arrived (and the connection to Kent is significant, as it was King Ethelbert who gave refuge to Augustine, later “of Canterbury,” when he arrived), this is interesting – to my mind, fascinating! – evidence that Christianity had at least a toe-hold in Anglo-Saxon England earlier than most had previously thought.

Things like this are why my understanding of the “Anglican Tradition” encompasses much more than simply Cranmer, Hooker, and the Caroline Divines. Without question, they were crucial to the formation of Anglicanism as we understand it today. But the roots of the Ecclesia Anglicana are found here – and in similar sites, both previously and yet-to-be discovered – and even earlier, among the Celts (both Brythonic and Goidelic) that preceded the Anglo-Saxons.

There is so much more to the Anglican tradition than just the 16th and 17th centuries!

King Arthur? Avalon? Who? What…?

https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0895/0864/products/42-21436247_1024x1024.jpeg?v=1450887342
Illustration of King Arthur Receiving Excalibur from the Lady of the Lake. N.C. Wyeth, c. 1910.

I had an instructive incident this afternoon, as I was teaching one of my behind-the-wheel students: since the struggle to save the West does not come with a salary, I teach driver’s education to put meat and bread on the table, and otherwise attempt to keep the wolves from the door.

Seeing a Toyota Avalon ahead of us at a stop light, I quipped to my student, “Well, there’s Avalon! I wonder where King Arthur is?” There was a brief silence, followed by a (slightly sheepish, to her credit) “I didn’t get that one!” from my student.

She didn’t get it. An Anglophone high school student, and one with a European last name and apparent ancestral heritage, to boot, didn’t get a reference – and not an obscure one – to the Arthurian legends, one of the most formative legendary and literary cycles in the history of the English-speaking peoples (and significant to French and German-speaking ones, as well). If there is any doubt that our educational system is in serious disarray, this one incident is proof positive, I would confidently assert.

I passed off the episode lightly, for my student’s sake – I’m teaching her to drive a car, not appreciate her own cultural heritage, and there were tasks to accomplish, and traffic and road conditions in need of attention – but it bothered me, and it continues to rankle.

But thinking about it tonight, I realized that from the perspective of the propagandists and ideologues that make up much of our educational establishment, this is an example, not of disarray, but of how well their plan is working. King Arthur should most emphatically not be taught, according to this outlook!

He is not only a member of one of the most despised of all classes (and one of the very few it is permissible – indeed, encouraged – to despise), a “DWEM” (Dead White European Male), but he actually fought against the invasion and subjugation diversity and cultural enrichment of his Romano-British land and people by the Anglo-Saxons. Really fought! With swords and spears and things. And in the process became an icon and an inspiration for defense against immigrant invasion opposition to multiculturalism for centuries thereafter.

How vile! He must have been one of those white supremacists. Oh, wait – the Anglo-Saxons were white, too! And so were the Vikings… and the Normans… and even the French and Spanish, who tried and failed to invade England. Best we just leave British / English history out of the schools entirely, unless we can find ways to convincingly pretend that they weren’t nearly as European as they very clearly and historically were, at least until the last decade or so.

We certainly don’t want to infect any of today’s students of European ancestry with any pride in their heritage, do we? Much less suggest to them, however indirectly, that it might be – perhaps even, ought to be – defended from invaders? Perish the thought!

We are seriously screwed up, and are getting screwed-er up-er, all the time!