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It was Nineteen Hundred and Eighty Three Years Ago Today (Apparently)

This morning two women approached my house and rang the doorbell. When I’d opened it one of them said, “I won’t keep you long as it’s cold, but we’d just like to remind you of the anniversary of Jesus’s death,” while handing me a leaflet. Taking the leaflet I mumbled something non-committal and thought, “That’s an odd way to talk about it.” Not only was it problematic that someone whom many people believe came back to life can actually be said to have suffered death at all (which I’ll let pass) but most people would have said “the meaning of Good Friday” or some such. Anyway, they were true to their word and quickly moved on next door.

I suppose I must have been intrigued since, before consigning it to the paper bin, I glanced at the leaflet. Therein it said that “This year, the anniversary of Jesus’ death falls on Wednesday March 23rd.” (I’ll not let that Jesus’ for Jesus’s pass, though.)

Now, I’m no theologian but; Wednesday March 23rd? Wednesday? I’m fairly sure the traditional anniversary of Jesus’s death falls on a Friday. It certainly has every year of my life so far.

Granted, most anniversaries fall on the same date every year, which necessitates a trundle through the weekdays in a cycle which due to the number of days in a year and the inclusion of leap years in the calendar only returns to the same day of the week every fifth, sixth and eleventh year (excluding century years whose first two digits divide by four.) In the case of Christ’s death though (no arguments about the placing of the apostrophe there) the tradition has certainly been to ignore this and commemorate it on a Friday. If memory serves, Easter is celebrated on the Sunday following the first Full Moon after the Spring Equinox; Good Friday always falls two days before that.

So. Do the Jehovah’s Witnesses (for it was one of their leaflets) know something the rest of us don’t? Did Jesus die on March 23rd, AD 33? (Or thereabouts. I believe it is generally accepted Jesus was 33 when he was crucified, though the year of his birth may not really have been 1 BC or 1 AD. The traditional calendar has no Year 0.) [AD, above, twice, would be CE for the more inclusive.] I do know, though, it wasn’t a Wednesday. (There are sources.)

Or was it? Dividing the 1983 years since CE 33 by the 11 of the anniversary waltz of the days gives us 180.27(recurring) cycles of eleven years. That 0.27(recurring) corresponds to 1.9 days. Let’s call it two. Now, do I add or subtract the five days corresponding to the intervening non-leap year century years? Adding would take us back to a Friday. Subtracting leads to a Tuesday.

The Sunday following the first Full Moon after the Spring Equinox suddenly seems less complicated.

Cove, Berwickshire

As its name suggests the village of Cove in Berwickshire – just over the A1 from Cockburnspath where my friend Eric Brown lives – is near to a cove.

This cove:-


Harbour at Cove

Cove Harbour Walls

The path down to the actual cove goes past this memorial which commemorates the women and children left by the fishing disaster of 14th October 1881 when 189 fishermen were lost off this coast. Cove lost 11 out of 21 fishermen.

Cove Fishermen's Memorialmemorial

The path goes through a tunnel cut through this bluff; the cove itself is therefore very secluded:-

Cove, Berwickshire

On the harbour wall there are bollards for boats to tie up to. They show interesting accretions of rust:-

Rust, Cove

More Cove Rust

Bloody Robots!

The blog suffered a DDOS attack yesterday. (Distributed Denial Of Service – I knew the DOS part but not the distributed, which I looked up.)

Sorry for any inconvenience.

It seems robots were responsible and most them have now been blocked.

Fingers crossed for uninterrupted access.

Thanks again to Duncan for putting things to rights.

Blog Embuggerance

I have been having trouble accessing my blog this past week or so.

Sometimes I get a message saying Server Not Found (server at not found.) Then suddenly, for no apparent reason I can get back in again.

Goodness knows why. I can’t account for it. I hope no-one else is having the same problem. If so bear with me. My blog administrator is looking into it.

Interior of Monk’s Cell, Mount Grace Priory

The interior of the monk’s cell was far from as spartan as I had previously imagined it would be.

Sleeping accomodation:-
Mount Grace Priory Cell LIving Space

Devotional area:-
Mount Grace Priory Cell Interior

Living space:-
Mount Grace Priory Cell Living Space

Upper floor:-
Mount Grace Priory Cell Upper Floor

Small cloister:-
Mount Grace Priory Cell Cloister

Sanitary arrangements:-
Mount Grace Priory Cell Sanitary Provision

All my Mount Grace Priory photgoraphs are on flickr here.

The Origins of Atoms

Here’s a Periodic Table with a difference.

Yes, it lists the elements in the usual way but the information within the boxes is distinctive. It tells where the atoms of each element first came into being whether it was in the big bang – for hydrogen and hydrogen alone – or, for most elements, in stars of varying types, or else by human activity.

From Astronomy Picture of the Day for 25/1/16:-

APOD 25/1/16

Edit:- I’ve just noticed the table has helium also being produced by the big bang. I’m sure it’s made by fusion in stars, though.

William Henry Bragg Memorial Plaque

Bragg was, along with his son, Lawrence, a pioneer of X-ray crystallography, which helps determine the chemical structure of solid compounds.

I found this on a wall in Market Harborough, Leicestershire:-

William Henry Bragg MemorialPlaque in Market Harborough

The Ford at Geddington

We took a stroll around Geddington (see previous post) and found a lovely bridge. The bridge is only wide enough for one car/vehicle at a time. You can see here the ford beside it which allows simultaneous passage. (We did see a driver chicken out of tackling the ford though):-

Bridge + Ford

View of the ford and river from the bridge:-

The Ford at Geddington

Eleanor Cross, Geddington, Northamptonshire

The other Eleanor Cross we visited was at Geddington:-

Eleanor Cross

Eleanor Cross, Geddington

An information board here shows the route of Eleanor of Castile’s body from Lincoln to London, and the twelve stopping places:-

Information Board, Eleanor Cross, Geddington

Eleanor Cross, Hardingstone, Northampton

Edward I of England, known as Edward Longshanks, and also Malleus Scotorum or Hammer of the Scots may have been a Middle Ages hard man but it seems he loved his wife, Eleanor of Castile. When she died at Lincoln he had her bodytransported to London for burial and at each stop along the way ordered that a cross be erected in her memory. These are known as Eleanor Crosses.

On our trip down south last summer we were so close to two of these we had to photograph them.

The first was at Hardingstone just south of Northampton:-

Eleanor Cross

Eleanor Cross, Northampton

There is an inscription (pretty much unreadable) in the stone on the wall behind the Cross:-

Inscription near Eleanor Cross, Northampton

The inscribed words are reproduced on the plaque:-

Eleanor Cross Inscription

Another descriptive plaque is on a pedestal nearby:-

Eleanor Cross, Northampton, Descriptive Plaque

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