Coventry Carol: A Bit of History

One of the things ultimately killed off in the English Reformation were the regional “mystery plays”: local pageant cycles in which the common folk performed dramatized Biblical stories. (The York cycle is the most famous.) Many of the surviving texts derive from the flowering of Middle English in the wake of Chaucer and Langland, and are of [Read More...]

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“It is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God”

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I’ve been reading Ron Chernow’s remarkable George Washington: A Life, which makes a case that was once obvious: even with his flaws, George Washington was the greatest and most important man in our history. He was more than a great man, however: he was a good man, and a man of deep Christian faith who was [Read More...]

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Did King Harold Survive the Battle of Hastings?

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The team of surveyors who found the body of Richard III is hoping they’re on a roll. Their next mission is to prove that King Harold II survived the Battle of Hastings in 1066 and lived to a ripe old age in a monastery. The Bayeux Tapestry shows Harold–last king of the Anglo-Saxons–shot in the eye [Read More...]

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Baal Cultic Complex Discovered in Israel

This is a pretty big find, and the connection to Baal seems likely: A massive cult complex, dating back about 3,300 years, has been discovered at the site of Tel Burna in Israel. While archaeologists have not fully excavated the cult complex, they can tell it was quite large, as the courtyard alone was 52 [Read More...]

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Remarkable Digital Reconstruction of the Palace of Ashurnasirpal II

The Metropolitan Museum of Art created this video flythrough of the spectacular Northwest Palace of Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal II (reigned: 883 to 859 BC) in the city alternately known as Numrud, Kalhu, and, in the Bible, Calah. The ruins are about 20 miles south of Mosul, Iraq. The palace walls were covered n reliefs (many of them [Read More...]

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Richard III Was A Heavy Drinker

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Not only do we now know that Richard III did, indeed, have a twisted spine, but a study of his remains indicates that the last years of his life showed a marked increase in consumption of wine and exotics foods such as “swan, crane, heron and egret.” The study appears in The Journal of Archaeological [Read More...]

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Vox: Pope Francis Calls For New Crusade

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Max Fisher wrote the dumbest thing I’ve read in ages. Even for something appearing on Vox, it’s Epic Stupid Level 5000 Plus Bonus Troll Points. Here it is: So, Max is going with the whole “Pope Calls For New Crusade” angle. (My response to that is “If only…”) Sure, the writing is laughably bad, the [Read More...]

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Statue of Jesus Has Human Teeth

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The statue of Jesus as the “Lord of Patience,” kept at the church of San Bartolo in Cuautlalpan Mexico, was gruesome enough before an art restorer subjected it to x-rays. That’s when the blood-drenched figure of a suffering Jesus was discovered to have an unexpected feature: its teeth are human. See for yourself: The teeth are unlikely [Read More...]

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