Posts Tagged ‘Queen Elizabeth I’
From the not-altogether-vested-interest-free folks at Replogle, “How Old Is Your Globe?” : scan down the chronological list of country name changes (full list at link)… “when you find a FORMER place name on your globe instead of the NEW name, you have determined the age of your globe…”
[TotH to Kottke.org]
As we reorient ourselves, we might recall that it was on this date in 1550 that William Cecil, later one of Queen Elizabeth’s closest advisors (a role for which he was rewarded with elevation to 1st Baron Burghley), was sworn in as King Edward VI’s Secretary of State– and then appointed himself Minister of Foreign Affairs.
After an author has been dead for some time, it becomes increasingly difficult for his publishers to get a new book out of him each year.
- Robert Benchley
From the always-amusing Mental Floss, a current read on The All-Time Best-Selling Books. The top spots are held by volumes either instructional or devotional:
1. The Bible (6.7 billion copies)
2. Quotations from Chairman Mao, Mao Tse-Tung (900 million)
3. The Qur’an (800 million)
4. Xinhua Zidian (400 million — a Chinese dictionary, first published in 1953)
5. The Book of Common Prayer, Thomas Cranmer
6. Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan
7. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, John Foxe
8. The Book of Mormon, Joseph J. Smith, Jr.
But two works of fiction round out the Top Ten:
9. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, J.K. Rowling (107 million — UK title was …and the Philosopher’s Stone)
10. And Then There Were None, Agatha Christie (100 million)
Read the full list (and find links to top lists of videos, games, and albums) at The All-Time Best-Selling Books… dive more deeply into the rankings at Wikipedia– which observes: “This is an incomplete list, which may never be able to satisfy particular standards for completeness.” To put it politely: note, e.g., that Tale of Two Cities and Tolkein’s work probably belong in MF’s Top Ten… Still, it’s fun…
“Classic.” A book which people praise and don’t read.
– Mark Twain
As we turn the page, we might recall that it was on this date in 1593 that poet and playwright (Shakespeare’s nearest rival) Christopher Marlowe was killed in a tavern brawl. Marlowe reputedly supplemented his income as a spy; in any case, he ran afoul of Queen Elizabeth’s government when, earlier in the month, his roommate, playwright Thomas Kyd was grilled by authorities. Kyd insisted that the “heretical” papers found in his room belonged to Marlowe, who was subsequently arrested, but was able to use his connections to arrange bail. While out Marlowe became involved in a fight– ostensibly over a tavern bill, but believed by many to have been a set-up– and was stabbed to death.
The 1585 portrait discovered at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, in 1953, believed to be of the 21-year-old Christopher Marlowe. The inscribed motto is “QVOD ME NVTRIT ME DESTRVIT,” “that which nourishes me destroys me.” Indeed. (source)
We might note too that (as the Library of Congress recalls) it was on this date in 1868 that Commander in Chief John A. Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic issued General Order Number 11 designating May 30 as a day “for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet churchyard in the land.”
The first national celebration of the holiday took place on that day at Arlington National Cemetery, where both Confederate and Union soldiers were buried. Originally known as Decoration Day, at the turn of the century it was designated “Memorial Day.”
The San Mateo County Event Center (aka “behind where the old Bay Meadows was”) comes alive this weekend–whirls, clangs, roars, flame spouts… It’s this year’s Maker Faire– an event that your correspondent heartily recommends. Readers will see such delights as…
Playable Table-top Pong
“What would the classic game PONG be like, if it were liberated from the cathode ray tube? To find out, we constructed this ‘real world’ version that you can try.”
From Evil Mad Scientist Labs (whom readers will recall)
The Apocalypse Puppet Theater
“We shall perform “So I Married a Seamonster- The Sordid Tale of Capt. Smitty” upon our bicycle-drawn traveling puppet theater, The Apocalypse Stagecoach. This show features bunraku puppets, original songs, and our Sababtini column wave machine.”
As we prepare to be amazed, we might recall that it was on this date in 1536 that Ann Boleyn was beheaded, ostensibly for adultery, treason, and incest. Historians doubt the charges: while Ann had borne Henry VIII the daughter who would become England’s Queen Elizabeth I, three subsequent attempts at producing a male heir had resulted in miscarriage; at the time of Ann’s arrest and execution, Henry had already moved on to Jane Seymour.
Ironically (or, given the Tudor family karma, not), it was on this date 32 years later that Queen Elizabeth ordered the arrest of (her first cousin once removed) Mary, Queen of Scots.
Please, Dad! Please read the one where the plague victim gets caught in the hurricane and is crushed by a tree…
From the ever-illuminating Ten Zen Monkeys, “The Most Depressing Children’s Books Ever Written“… Consider, for example, #5:
Andrea Patel, a Massachusetts schoolteacher– and pastry chef, and musician– represents the earth as a big blue circle of tissue paper, then writes “One day a terrible thing happened,” as a big red splotch appears on that circle.
“The world, which had been blue and green and bright and very big and really round and pretty peaceful, got badly hurt.
“Many people were injured. Many other people died. And everyone was sad.”
Then she tries explaining terrorism to children — using more tissue paper collages. There’s a tornado, an earthquake, and a fire — all bad things that happen naturally. “But sometimes bad things happen because people act in mean ways and hurt each other on purpose,” she writes. “That’s what happened on that day, a day when it felt like the world broke.” Then there’s a picture of the pieces of the world blowing away and drifting across the blank whiteness of the next page…
The book was finished within weeks of the September 11 attacks, and Patel donated all the book’s proceeds to a 9/11 charity, but the whole exercise is still a little disturbing. People fumbled for the right response to the terrorist attacks, and in the end, this is probably Patel’s most inadvertently honest sentence.
“This is scary, and hard to understand, even for grown-ups.”
One should steel oneself, then find them all here.
As wonder whatever became of Tom Terrific, we might recall that it was on this date in 1584 that Sir Walter Raleigh was granted a Royal Patent by his Patron Elizabeth I to colonize Virginia.