Saturday, February 12, 2011
Henry V (Welsh: Harri V) (16 September 1387 – 31 August 1422) was King of England from 1413 until his death. From an unassuming start, his military successes in the Hundred Years' War, culminating with his famous victory at the Battle of Agincourt, saw him come close to conquering France.
Accession of Henry V.1: 1413.—Henry V. ascended the throne without challenge, and was crowned at Westminster three weeks after his father's death (April 9). The responsibilities of his position sobered him at once. The riotous Prince Hal was suddenly transformed into the brave and spirited King Henry V.—Shakespeare's ideal King. His earliest acts were to discard his old companions; to call around him the wisest of the land ; to set free the Earl of March; and to restore the Percy estates to the exiled son of Hotspur. He caused the body of Richard II. to be buried in Westminster Abbey. Determined to have a minister who should carry out his policy both in England and in France, he removed Archbishop Arundel from the chancellorship, and appointed in his place Henry Beaufort, Bishop of Winchester, a son of John of Gaunt.
Mediaeval England, from the English settlement to the reformation
Friday, February 11, 2011
Voyager probesLaunched in 1977, the Voyager probes carried two golden records that were inscribed with diagrams depicting the human form, our solar system and its location. Also included were recordings of pictures and sounds from Earth.
Pioneers 10 and 11, which preceded Voyager, both carried small metal plaques identifying their time and place of origin for the benefit of any other spacefarers that might find them in the distant future. With this example before them, NASA placed a more ambitious message aboard Voyager 1 and 2-a kind of time capsule, intended to communicate a story of our world to extraterrestrials. The Voyager message is carried by a phonograph record-a 12-inch gold-plated copper disk containing sounds and images selected to portray the diversity of life and culture on Earth. The contents of the record were selected for NASA by a committee chaired by Carl Sagan of Cornell University, et. al. Dr. Sagan and his associates assembled 115 images and a variety of natural sounds, such as those made by surf, wind and thunder, birds, whales, and other animals. To this they added musical selections from different cultures and eras, and spoken greetings from Earth-people in fifty-five languages, and printed messages from President Carter and U.N. Secretary General Waldheim. Each record is encased in a protective aluminum jacket, together with a cartridge and a needle. Instructions, in symbolic language, explain the origin of the spacecraft and indicate how the record is to be played. The 115 images are encoded in analog form. The remainder of the record is in audio, designed to be played at 16-2/3 revolutions per minute. It contains the spoken greetings, beginning with Akkadian, which was spoken in Sumer about six thousand years ago, and ending with Wu, a modern Chinese dialect. Following the section on the sounds of Earth, there is an eclectic 90-minute selection of music, including both Eastern and Western classics and a variety of ethnic music. Once the Voyager spacecraft leave the solar system (by 1990, both will be beyond the orbit of Pluto), they will find themselves in empty space. It will be forty thousand years before they make a close approach to any other planetary system. As Carl Sagan has noted, “The spacecraft will be encountered and the record played only if there are advanced spacefaring civilizations in interstellar space. But the launching of this bottle into the cosmic ocean says something very hopeful about life on this planet.”
Take of the humidity, or moisture, an ounce and a half, and or the Southern redness, which is the soul of gold, a fourth part, that is to say, half-an-ounce of the citrine Seyre, in like manner, half-an-ounce of the Auripigment, half-an-ounce, which are eight; that is three ounces. And know ye that the vine of the wise is drawn forth in three, but the wine thereof is not perfected, until at length thirty be accomplished
Understand the operation, therefore. Decoction lessens the matter, but the tincture augments it; because Luna in fifteen days is diminished; and in the third she is augmented. This is the beginning and the end. Behold, I have declared that which was hidden, since the work is both with thee and about thee - that which was within is taken out and fixed, and thou canst have it either in earth or sea.
Keep, therefore, thy Argent vive, which is prepared in the innermost chamber in which it is coagulated; for that is the Mercury which is separated from the residual earth.
He, therefore, who now hears my words, let him search into them; which are to justify no evil-doer, but to benefit the good; therefore, I have discovered all things that were before hidden concerning this knowledge, and disclosed the greatest of all secrets, even the Intellectual Science.
Know ye, therefore, Children of Wisdom, who enquire concerning the report thereof, that the vulture standing upon the mountain crieth out with a loud voice, I am the White of the Black, and the Red of the White, and the Citrine of the Red, and behold I speak the very truth.
And know that the chief principle of the art is the Crow, which is the blackness of the night and clearness of the day, and flies without wings. From the bitterness existing in the throat the tincture is taken, the red goes forth from his body, and from his back is taken a thin water.
Understand, therefore, and accept this gift of God which is hidden from the thoughtless world. In the caverns of the metals there is hidden the stone that is venerable, splendid in colour, a mind sublime, and an open sea. Behold, I have declared it unto thee; give thanks to God, who teacheth thee this knowledge, for He in return recompenses the grateful.
Put the matter into a moist fire, therefore, and cause it to boil in order that its heat may be augmented, which destroys the siccity of the incombustible nature, until the radix shall appear; then extract the redness and the light parts, till only about a third remains.
The manner of our work; the bulls, our furnace,
Still breathing fire; Qui argent-vive, the dragon.
A dictionary of archaic and provincial words, obsolete phrases ..., Volume 1
By James Orchard Halliwell-Phillipps
Ensign of the White Squadron - 1702-07The title of admiral is also given in modern times to naval officers of the highest rank : of which we have in England three classes, namely, Admirals of the Red, of the White, and of the Blue. Admirals of the Red bear their flag at the main-top-gallant-mast-head : those of the White, at the foretop-gallant-mast-head ; and those of the Blue, at the mizentop-gallant-mast-head. After the union with Scotland in 1707, the use of the red flag was discontinued, the union jack being substituted for it ; but it was resumed at the naval promotion which took place in 1805, after the battle of Trafalgar. There are also vice-admirals and rear-admirals of each flag, the former ranking with lieutenant-generals, and the latter with major-generals in the army. A full admiral ranks with a general. The title of flag-officer belongs to nil the three primes. That of admiral of the fleet is merely a honorary distinction, with sea-pay of (jl. a day. According to the Navy List for July 1854, there were on full-pay 21 admirals, 27 vice-admirals, and 51 rear-admirals; the numbers on reserved half-pay were respectively 6, 14, and 33, besides 10 flag-officers on reserved half-pay with servicepensions. There were also 132 retired rear-ndmirals, 33 on the usual half-pay, and 99 on that of captain. The fullpay of an admiral is 5Í. a day ; of a vice-ndmiral, 4/. ; and of a rear-admiral, 3/. An allowance of 3/. a day for table-money is made while commanding-in-chief, or while their flag- iri flying- within the limits of their station.
Wednesday, February 09, 2011
Succeeded Urban II, and reigned from 13 Aug., 1099, till he died at Rome, 21 Jan., 1118. Born in central Italy, he was received at an early age as a monk in Cluny. In his twentieth year he was sent on business of the monastery to Rome, and was retained at the papal court by Gregory VII, and made Cardinal-Priest of St. Clement's church. It was in this church that the conclave met after the death of Pope Urban, and Cardinal Rainerius was the unanimous choice of the sacred college. He protested vigorously against his election, maintaining, with some justice, that his monastic training had not fitted him to deal with the weighty problems which confronted the papacy in that troublous age. His protestations were disregarded by his colleagues, and he was consecrated the following day in St. Peter's. Once pope, he betrayed no further hesitation and wielded the sceptre with a firm and prudent grasp. The main lines of his policy had been laid by the master minds of Gregory and Urban, in whose footsteps he faithfully followed, while the unusual length of his pontificate, joined to a great amiability of character, made his reign an important factor in the development of the medievalpapal dominion. Urban II had lived to witness the complete success of his wonderful movement for the liberation of the Holy Land and the defence of Christendom. He had died a fortnight after Jerusalem fell into the hands of the crusaders.
If it were ever unpresumptuous to trace the retributive justice of God in the destiny of one man, it might be acknowledged in the humiliation of Pope Paschal II. by the Emperor Henry V. The Pope, by his continual sanction, if not by direct advice, had trained the young Emperor in his inordinate ambition and his unscrupulous avidity for power. He had not rebuked his shameless perfidy or his revolting cruelty ; he had absolved him from thrice-sworn oaths; he had released him from the great irrepealable obligations of nature and the divine law. A rebel against his sovereign and his father was not likely, against his own interests or passions, to be a dutiful son or subject of his mother the Church, or of his spiritual superiors. If Paschal suffered the result of his own lessons, if he was driven from his capital, exposed to personal sufferings so great and menacing as to compel him to submit to the hardest terms which the Emperor chose to dictate, he had not much right to compassion. Paschal is almost the only later Pope who was reduced to the degrading necessity of being disclaimed by the clergy, of being forced to retract his own impeccable decrees, of being taunted in his own day with heresy, and abandoned as a feeble traitor to the rights of the Church by the dexterous and unscrupulous apologists of almost every act of the Papal See.
When Henry V advanced with an army into Italy in order to be crowned, the Pope agreed to a compact (February 1111), by the terms of which the Church should surrender all the possessions and royalties it had received of the empire and kingdom of Italy since the days of Charlemagne (768–814), while Henry V on his side should renounce lay investiture. Preparations were made for the coronation on 12 February 1111, but the Romans rose in revolt against him, and the German king retired taking the Pope and curia with him.
Tuesday, February 08, 2011
Pioneer plaqueThe Pioneer plaques are a pair of gold-anodized aluminium plaques which were placed on board the 1972 Pioneer 10 and 1973 Pioneer 11 spacecraft, featuring a pictorial message, in case either Pioneer 10 or 11 are intercepted by extraterrestrial life. The plaques show the nude figures of a human male and female along with several symbols that are designed to provide information about the origin of the spacecraft.
The Pioneer spacecraft were the first human-built objects to leave the solar system. The plaques were attached to the spacecraft's antenna support struts in a position that would shield them from erosion by stellar dust.
- Material: 6061 T6 gold-anodized aluminum
- Width: 229 mm (9 inches)
- Height: 152 mm (6 inches)
- Thickness: 1.27 mm (0.05 inches)
- Mean depth of engraving: 0.381 mm (0.015 inches)
- Mass: approx. 0.120 kilograms
At the far right, the bracketing bars (1) show the height of the woman compared to the spacecraft. The figure indicated by (2)
represents a reverse in the direction of spin of the electron in a hydrogen atom. This transition puts out a characteristic radio
wave 21 cm long, so we are indicating that 21 cm is our base length. The horizontal and vertical ticks (3) are a representation
of the number 8 in binary form. Therefore, the woman is 8 x 21 cm = 168 cm, or about 5'5" tall. The human figures
represent the type of creature that created Pioneer. The man's hand is raised in a gesture of good will.
The radial pattern (4) will help other scientists locate our solar system in the galaxy. The solid bars indicate distance, with the
horizontal bar (5), denoting the distance from the Sun to the galactic center. The shorter solid bars represent directions and
distances to various pulsars from our Sun, and the ticks following them are the periods of the pulsars in binary form. Pulsars
are known to be slowing down and if the rate of slowing is constant, an other-world scientist should be able to roughly
deduce the time Pioneer was launched. Thus, we have placed ourselves approximately in both space and time. The
drawing at the bottom (6) indicates our solar system. The ticks accompanying each planet are the relative distance in binary
form of that planet to the Sun. Pioneer's trajectory is shown as starting from the third planet, Earth.
Sunday, February 06, 2011
Pope Calixtus II (or Calistus II) (died December 13, 1124), born Guy de Vienne, the
fourth son of William I, Count of Burgundy (1057–87), was elected Pope on February 1,
1119, after the death of Pope Gelasius II (1118–19). His pontificate was shaped by the
Investiture Controversy, which he was able to settle through the Concordat of Worms
(in 1122). Although his birth date is not known, his eldest brother was
born in 1061, therefore we can assume that Guy himself was born between
1065 and 1068.
Guy first appeared in contemporary records when, in 1088, he became the Archbishop of Vienne.
He held strong pro-Papal views about the Investiture Controversy. As archbishop,
he was appointed papal legate to France by Pope Paschal II (1099–1118); this was during
the time that Paschal II, yielding to pressure from Emperor Henry V (1105–25), was induced
to issue the Privilegium of 1111, by which he yielded much of the papal prerogatives that
had been so forcefully claimed by Pope Gregory VII (1073–85) in the Gregorian Reforms.
This, however, docs not exhaust the hew information put at our disposal by Mynas' discovery. In the course of an
account of the heresy of Noetus, who refused to admit any difference between the First and Second Persons of
the Trinity, our author suddenly develops a violent attack on one Callislus, a high officer of the Church, whom he
describes as a runaway slave who had made away with his master's money, had stolen that deposited with him by
widows and others belonging to the Church, and had been condemned to the mines by the Prefect of the City, to be
released only by the grace of Commodus' concubine, March.' He further accuses Callislus of leaning towards
the heresy of Noetus, and of encouraging laxity of manners in the Church by permitting the -marriage and re-marriage
of bishops and priests and concubinage among the un-married women. The heaviness of this charge lies in the
fact that this Callislus can hardly be any other than the Saint and Martyr of that name, who succeeded Zephyrinus
in the Chair of St Peter about the year 11S, and whose name is familiar to all visitors to modern Rome from the
cemetery which still bears it, and over which the work before us says he had been set by his predecessor. 1 The
explanation of these charges will be discussed when we consider the authorship of the book, but for the present it
may be noticed that they throw an entirely unexpected light upon the inner history of the Primitive Church.