Thursday, December 27, 2018

Second week of Tishri + 15 Month = Christmas

Assorted retorts from yahoo boards and elsewhere : Soon Christmas · New blog on the kid : On the Date of Christmas · Φιλολoγικά / Philologica : Second week of Tishri + 15 Month = Christmas

Here is the argument of Dwight Longenecker:

Here’s how it goes: We know that John the Baptist’s father, Zechariah was a priest who served in the temple at Jerusalem. While he was serving an angel appeared announcing that his wife Elizabeth would become pregnant and the boy’s name would be John. The Jewish priests were on a schedule according to their family lineage because the priesthood was hereditary. Zechariah was a priest of the class of Abijah. This is recorded in Luke 1:5. The class of Abijah was the eighth class of priests. This is recorded in Nehemiah 12:17. Each class served one week in the temple twice a year. The Abijah class took their turn during the second week of the Jewish month of Tishri. On our calendar that would fall between 22 and 30 September. Count ahead nine months. We celebrate the birth of John the Baptist on 24 June.

How does this connect with Jesus? When the angel comes to Mary to announce the conception of Jesus Christ after her assent, she goes to visit her cousin Elizabeth (John the Baptist’s mother and wife of Zechariah) when Elizabeth was six months pregnant. This is recorded in Luke 1:36. If John the Baptist was conceived around 25 September, this means Jesus was conceived around March 25 –the date Christians celebrate the Annunciation–. Count forward nine more months and you get December 25 as the date for the birth of Jesus Christ.

Yes, Jesus Really Existed and He Was Born on December 25
December 20, 2018 by Fr. Dwight Longenecker

Now, "in our calendar" - depends on what year.

I was counting on 19 years, consistently adding 365.2425 days to the account at the start of a year, and consistently deducting 29.5 days per lunar month, ignoring when around half days the new days fall, but otherwise miming the functioning of Hebrew years. A bit too the Cycle of Meton, on which they are currently more or less based.

Now, after month IX, the days left of the year varied between 100 and 127 in those 19 "years". Now, "second week" of a month are its days 8 to 14. In Tishri, that includes ...

9 Tishrei – Erev Yom Kippur
10 Tishrei – Yom Kippur – (Fast Day)

This means, we can well imagine Zacharias was offering the sacrifice of Iom Kippur ...

It also means, we can check whether Iom Kippur is a September 25, typically ...

2017 date Sunset, 29 September – nightfall, 30 September[1]
2018 date Sunset, 18 September – nightfall, 19 September
2019 date Sunset, 8 October – nightfall, 9 October
2020 date Sunset, 27 September – nightfall, 28 September

Yes, a September 25th date is possible, though not the only possible one.

Im Jerusalemer Tempel wurden an diesem Tag besondere Opfer dargebracht, es war der einzige Tag, an dem der Hohepriester – allein und streng abgeschirmt – das Allerheiligste im Tempel betreten durfte, um stellvertretend für das Volk die Vergebung der Sünden zu empfangen. Dort besprengte er die Bundeslade mit dem Blut von zwei Opfertieren.

It was the only day on which the High Priest - alone and strictly screened off - could enter into the Holy of Holies in the Temple ... however, Zachary was seemingly not offering blood of sacrificial animals on the Ark of the Covenant, he was offering incense:

According to the custom of the priestly office, it was his lot to offer incense, going into the temple of the Lord. And all the multitude of the people was praying without, at the hour of incense. And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord, standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And Zachary seeing him, was troubled, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said to him: Fear not, Zachary, for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elizabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John: (Luke 1:9-13)

I wonder, does this mean, Zachary was doing incense while the High priest was entering the Holy of Holies? In fact, it seems Zachary never officiated as High Priest, according to the wikipedian list of High Priests:

Ananelus, 37-36 BC
Aristobulus III, paternal grandson of Aristobulus, 36 BC He was the last of the Hasmoneans; II and brother of Herod's second wife Mariamne I.
Ananelus (restored), 36-30 BC
Joshua ben Fabus, 30-23 BC
Simon ben Boethus, 23-5 BC (his daughter Mariamne II was third wife of Herod the Great)
Matthias ben Theophilus, 5-4 BC[13]
Joazar ben Boethus, 4 BC
Eleazar ben Boethus, 4-3 BC
Joshua ben Sie, 3 BC - ?
Joazar ben Boethus (restored), ? - 6 AD

On the other hand, since there are question marks at Joshua ben Sie and Joazar ben Boethus, this is not totally certain ... this means, Zachary would not have entered the Holy of Holies and therefore, he would not have been required not to offer incense on Iom Kippur - unless indeed the offering of incense was broken off due to fasting - and we cannot tie nor exclude Zachary's service to Iom Kippur. Only to the week.

Now, again, the Jewish year falls with its months and dates on various parts of the Gregorian or back then Julian year.

the earliest date on which Yom Kippur can fall is September 14, as happened most recently in 1899 and 2013. The latest Yom Kippur can occur relative to the Gregorian dates is on October 14, as happened in 1967 and will happen again in 2043.

Remember, Iom Kippur is 10 Tishri, second week of Tishri begins 8 and ends 14 Tishri ...

8 Tishri can therefore fall between September 12 and October 12, 14 Tishri between September 19 and October 19. So, overall, between September 12 and October 19. This means, between September 12 and "September 49".

49  38  11
11  /2  19
38  19  30

And no, the mean of this is not September 25, but September 30.

This means, in order to calculate forward to December 25 fifteen months later, one would have needed ... either another mean corresponence between Julian and Hebrew years then than now, or exact knowledge on which day of Tishri in which year and which years had late and early months, like if previous year had two Adar months, the Tishri would be late, but if that had happened the year before, the Tishri would be early.

Or even a record keeping in the Temple on what Roman dates corresponded to a Jewish year, if this knowledge came to the Church from the Temple.

It is nearly necessary to suppose such a thing in order to calculate anything, since the Challoner comment says:

[5] "Of the course of Abia": that is, of the rank of Abia, which word in the Greek is commonly put for the employment of one day: but here for the functions of a whole week. For, by the appointment of David, 1 Par. 24., the descendants from Aaron were divided into twenty-four families, of which the eighth was Abia, from whom descended this Zachary, who at this time was in the week of his priestly functions.

September 25 - 24 weeks = September 25 - 168 days

September 25
April 178 - 168 = April 10 - that would have been within his previous turn.

September 25 + 168 days = "September 193"

S 193  J 70
O -31  F 28
O 162  F 42
N -30  M 31
N 132  M 11
D -31
D 101
J -31
J =70

His next turn would have included March 11. In other words, an exact knowledge of when is necessary. At a minimum, if a priest became Christian after year 70, he must have been able to work it out backwards from Destruction of Temple, following the courses.

While Christianity is not Rabbinic Judaism, it starts out involved in Judaica, and when Jews convert, Christianity can get added info, not on doctrine, but on history. Church Fathers start mentioning Christmas after year 70 (and well before when Aurelian invented Sol Invictus - and Christmas is not even coinciding with Saturnalia). I think it is probable, the Church has at least known of December 25 since back then.

Hans Georg Lundahl
St. John's Day

PS, I also enjoy this article, about the place:

How Can We Be Sure That Jesus Was Born in Bethlehem?

Dwight Longenecker at his best:

The evidence that Christians were worshipping at this site therefore dates from the beginning of the second century–at most one hundred and twenty years after the birth of Christ. Would the local people have retained a memory of the exact site? I think so. We only have to look around at the world today to see how the homes of famous people are remembered, identified, marked, and become places of pilgrimage. What famous person was born a hundred and twenty years ago? C.S.Lewis for one. His Oxford home has been turned into a study center and pilgrimage site for visitors, and this article tells how his boyhood home in Belfast is visited by C.S.Lewis fans.

PPS, one more thought on this : even the text of Luke presupposes that he had access to someone (probably St John the Gospeller, with whom the Blessed Virgin lived) who knew that Zachary had served in the course of Abiah. So, probably, that is how the Church knew when Christmas was./HGL

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Ockham - Protestant, Sede or Trad?

Russell Grigg, on CMI, seems to imagine him as a Protestant.

Michael asked Ockham to study three papal bulls4 showing what Pope John XXII had previously written on the use of property. From these, Ockham concluded that Pope John was not just mistakenly wrong, but was stubbornly and heretically wrong, and so had forfeited his mandate. In short, Ockham protested that John was a pseudo-pope. Indeed, Ockham has the distinction of being designated ‘the first Protestant’—by no less an authority on this subject than the Catholic Encyclopedia.5

Actually, when I look up the article, I find:

He has, indeed, been called "the first Protestant". Nevertheless, he recognized in his polemical writings the authority of the Church in spiritual matters, and did not diminish that authority in any respect. Similarly, although he rejected the rational demonstration of several truths which are fundamental in the Christian system of theology, he held firmly to the same truths as matters of faith.

So, no, not a Protestant. Perhaps Russell Grigg had consulted the other one, which I have not been able to access ...

How about the quoted paragraph? The one quoted by Russell Grigg?

From these, Ockham concluded that Pope John was not just mistakenly wrong, but was stubbornly and heretically wrong, and so had forfeited his mandate. In short, Ockham protested that John was a pseudo-pope.

Sounds like a Sedevacantist. You know the guys who go:

Other Catholic
(since 2014)
You really should accept Evolution, Pope Saint John Paul II said "evolution is more than just a hypothesis".

Yeah, I know it was not "more than just one hypothesis" as some had hoped, I can only conclude Wojtyla was a pseudo-Pope. As Bergoglio for pseudo-canonizing him.

Other Catholic
(prior to 2007)
You can't go to the Masses of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X, Pope Paul VI has changed the liturgy.

Yeah, I avoid their Masses too, now, since they pray "una cum papa nostro benedicto" (prior to 2007, remember) and Montini with successors Wojtyla and Ratzinger are pseudo-Popes.

So, was Ockham a Sede about John XXII? In fact, others seem to have had misgivings too. He momentarily entertained soul sleep, and said even the saints don't see God in Heaven prior to the Last Judgement. One or two saints promptly opposed this and their wording - "withdraw obedience" - can at least be reasonably interpreted as an euphemism for "go Sede". He did repent on this one.

Relationships between the parties deteriorated and in May 1328 Michael, Ockham, and some Franciscan sympathizers fled Avignon to the protection of the Holy Roman Emperor, Louis IV (Ludwig) of Bavaria, who became Ockham’s patron. Pope John promptly excommunicated Ockham and his companions, not for heresy but for defiance of his authority (i.e. leaving Avignon without his permission).

Sounds a bit like the reaction of "John Paul II" in 1988.

"Yeah, I know, you are concerned we are not sufficiently traditional in Rome, you think you have to defend tradition on your own, but hey guys, as long as you accept I am Pope, what you did is disobedience to the Pope on a very grave matter (consecration of bishops without authorisation by the Pope), so, just want you to know, the Church Law automatically excommunicated you ..."

VERY loose rendering of the notification act of Antipope Wojtyla on hearing bishops Lefebvre and Castro-Mayer had pulled through with consecrating four bishops at Écône. One of which, Mgr Williamson, is, by the way fairly strictly Creationist, excplicitly references Adam and Eve and the Flood. And the upcoming Antichrist.

So, as far as the mode of non-obedience is concerned, one can debate on whether William was Protestant (very improbable) or Sedevacantist or Trad (Lefebvrist). The latter two are more probable. Except, he was Caesareo-Papist:

In his controversial writings William of Ockham appears as the advocate of secular absolutism. He denies the right of the popes to exercise temporal power, or to interfere in any way whatever in the affairs of the Empire. He even went so far as to advocate the validity of the adulterous marriage of Louis's son, on the grounds of political expediency, and the absolute power of the State in such matters.

What a horror ...

Hans Georg Lundahl
St. Stephen

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Gothic Sculptors

Before going on to personal details, the wiki category named with a few more, one person didn't even give his name:

Lamentation of Christ from Žebrák is a lime wood relief of the common subject of the Lamentation of Christ, from about 1510. It ranks among the finest works of Late Gothic sculpture in Bohemia. The anonymous artist, who is called the "Master of the Žebrák Lamentation of Christ" after this work, probably had his workshop in České Budějovice and could have been the same person as the woodcarver Alexandr (Alexandr Schniczer) who was in charge of that town’s guild between 1503 and 1516.[1] The relief is now part of the permanent collection of medieval art at the National Gallery in Prague.

That's how modest certain artists were in the Middle Ages. But, unlike an idealistic prejudice, not all. This very idealistic prejudice may have come from less familiarity with Gothic artists and therefore less ability naming them, so you say "they didn't sign their works" - some didn't, but many did or the artists was otherwise known, from contract and payment. A few others had birth or death year so uncertain I could not use them for a statistic like this ... here are those I could use for statistics*:

  • André Beauneveu (born c. 1335 in Valenciennes, died c.1400 in Bourges) was an Early Netherlandish sculptor and painter, born in the County of Hainaut (Valenciennes is today in France), who is best known for his work in the service of the French King Charles V, and of the Valois Duke, Jean de Berry. His work in all media shows a generally naturalistic and 'sculptural' style, characteristic of the 'Pucellian revival' of the latter 14th century.

  • Arnolfo di Cambio[1] (c. 1240 – 1300/1310) was an Italian architect and sculptor.

  • Matteo di Cione (1330–1380) was an Italian sculptor, notable for being the brother of three of the great painters of Gothic Florence, Nardo di Cione, Jacopo di Cione and Andrea di Cione. The di Cione (pronounced dee choh’ nay) brothers often worked collaboratively, and Matteo is known to have supplied marble for Orcagna's altarpiece in the Orsanmichele (c.1381).

  • Andrea di Cione di Arcangelo (c. 1308 – August 25, 1368), better known as Orcagna, was an Italian painter, sculptor, and architect active in Florence. He worked as a consultant at the Florence Cathedral and supervised the construction of the facade at the Orvieto Cathedral

  • Simón de Colonia (Burgos, hacia 1450 - Burgos, 1511) fue un arquitecto y escultor español, hijo del arquitecto gótico Juan de Colonia y padre del también arquitecto y escultor Francisco de Colonia.

  • Juan o Hans de Colonia (Colonia, ca. 14101​ - Burgos, 1481) fue un arquitecto alemán, que introdujo en Castilla el estilo gótico flamígero. Se le considera, junto a Enrique Egas, el representante más destacado del mismo en España. Fue padre y abuelo, respectivamente, de los también arquitectos Simón y Francisco de Colonia.

  • Francisco de Colonia (Burgos, c. 1470 - ibídem, 1542) fue un arquitecto y escultor español.

  • Gregor Erhart (ca. 1470?–1540) was a German sculptor who was born at Ulm, the son of sculptor Michel Erhart. Gregor spent his working career at Augsburg, where he was made master in 1496, and where he died. Attributions of sculpture to his workshop, mixing Late Gothic and Renaissance formulas, are based on a single documented work originally from the Cistercian Kaisheim Abbey, which was lost in World War II.

  • Michel Erhart (c. 1440 to 1445 – after 1522, Ulm) was a German late Gothic sculptor who lived and worked in Ulm.

  • Madern Gerthener (1360/1370 – 1430) was a German stonemason and late Gothic architect. (Self portrait on Eschenheimer Tor in Frankfurt, which I never noticed when living or visiting there).

  • Henning van der Heide (sometimes von der Heide/Heyde, ca. 1460 - 1521) was a German late Gothic sculptor. Little is known about van der Heide's personal life. He was trained in the workshop of Bernt Notke (and worked with him on his famous Saint George and the Dragon statue in Stockholm) and seems to have lived and worked in Lübeck, present-day Germany. In 1485 he married, and in 1487 he purchased a house in Königstraße street of Lübeck. In 1513 he was made alderman at the guild of painters. He seems to have retired in 1519, when his workshop passed to his oldest son. For a craftsman of his age he appears to have been unusually wealthy as he managed to purchase three houses, one for each of his sons. (Or perhaps houses were cheaper then? Or craftsmen better paid?) Works attributable to van der Heide include ... a sculpture of St. Jerome in Vadstena Abbey, Sweden.

  • Adam Kraft (or Krafft) (c. 1460? – January 1509) was a German stone sculptor and master builder of the late Gothic period, based in Nuremberg and with a documented career there from 1490.

  • Lorenzo Maitani (c. 1275–1330) was the Italian architect and sculptor primarily responsible for the construction and decoration of the façade of Orvieto Cathedral.

  • Hans Multscher (ca. 1400–1467) was a German sculptor and painter. He made himself acquainted with new artistic styles from northern France and the Netherlands, and became a free citizen of the city of Ulm in 1427. There, he married Adelheid Kitzin the same year. He ran his own business as a painter and sculptor, together with his brother Heinrich Multscher. Multscher died in Ulm.

  • Bernt Notke (c. 1440 – before May 1509) was a late Gothic artist, working in the Baltic region. He has been described as one of the foremost artists of his time in northern Europe.

    He's the reason I started this statistic, and here is how I came across him:

    The statue was commissioned by Sten Sture the Elder following his victory over the Danish army in the Battle of Brunkeberg in 1471. During the battle, Sten Sture put his army under the protection of Saint George. Although not signed by him, the sculpture is widely attributed to the workshop of Bernt Notke.[1][2][3][4][5] Notke, who had his workshop in Lübeck, lived in Sweden between 1491 and 1497 and was a frequent visitor to the country before that. The sculpture was inaugurated on New Year's Eve 1489 by a papal nuncio.

    Saint George and the Dragon (Notke)

    Obviously, at the battle of Brunkeberg and following years up to 1489, Sweden was still a Catholic country.

  • Pere Oller (fl. 1394 - 1442) was a Catalan Gothic sculptor.

  • Peter Parler (German: Peter von Gemünd, Czech: Petr Parléř, Latin: Petrus de Gemunden in Suevia; 1333 – 13 July 1399) was a German-Bohemian architect and sculptor from the Parler family of master builders. Along with his father, Heinrich Parler, he is one of the most prominent and influential craftsmen of the Middle Ages. Born and apprenticed in the town of Schwäbisch Gmünd, Peter worked at several important late Medieval building sites, including Strasbourg, Cologne, and Nuremberg. After 1356 he lived in Prague, capital of the Kingdom of Bohemia and seat of the Holy Roman Empire, where he created his most famous works: St. Vitus Cathedral and the Charles Bridge.

  • Heinrich Parler the Elder (also Heinrich of Gmünd, German: Heinrich von Gemünd der Ältere; c. 1310 – c. 1370), was a German architect and sculptor. His masterpiece is Holy Cross Minster, an influential milestone of late Gothic architecture in the town of Schwäbisch Gmünd, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. Parler also founded the Parler family of master builders and his descendants worked in various parts of central Europe, especially Bohemia. His son, Peter Parler, became one of the major architects of the Middle Ages. The family name is derived from the word Parlier, meaning "foreman".

  • Johann Parler the Younger (Czech: Jan Parléř, German: Johann Parler der Jüngere; c. 1359 – 1405/06), was a Bohemian architect of German origin from the prominent Parler family of architects, master builders, and sculptors. He was the son of famous Gothic architect Peter Parler, the builder of Saint Vitus Cathedral and Charles Bridge in Prague. His uncle (i.e. Peter’s brother) was Johannes von Gmünd also known as Johann Parler the Elder, a German Gothic master builder who was architect of Freiburg Minster and also rebuilt the damaged Basel Minster.

  • Wenzel Parler (Czech: Václav Parléř, c. 1360 – 1404) was an architect and sculptor from the Parler family of German-Bohemian master builders and son of Peter Parler. He worked on Gothic churches in the Holy Roman cities of Prague, Nördlingen, and Vienna during the Late Middle Ages.

  • Master Paul of Levoča (Hungarian: Lőcsei Pál mester, Slovak: Majster Pavol z Levoče) was a medieval carver and sculptor of the 15th and 16th century, active mostly in the town of Levoča (Hungarian: Lőcse) in the Kingdom of Hungary (today in Slovakia). Most documents about him vanished at the Levoča fire in 1550. So, neither his surname, nor dates or places of birth and death are known. It is assumed that he was born between 1470 and 1480. He must have died between 1537 (when he is still mentioned on record) and 1542 (when his widow is mentioned).

  • Anton Pilgram (also Anton Pilchramb) (around 1460, Brno (?) – 1516, Vienna) was a late medieval Austrian (German) architect and sculptor active in the area of today's Czech Republic (Moravia), Austria and western Germany. Pilgram is known as the sculptor of the portal of Old City Hall in Brno and craftsman of the pulpit in St. Stephen's Cathedral, Vienna. He spent a major part of his life in Brno, Moravia.

  • Andrea Pisano (Pontedera 1290 – 1348 Orvieto)[1][2] also known as Andrea da Pontedera, was an Italian sculptor and architect.

  • Bonanno Pisano (Pisa) (c.1150 - c.1200), active in the 1170s and 1180s, was an Italian sculptor, mixing Byzantine and classical elements. Giorgio Vasari wrongly attributed the realization of the Leaning Tower of Pisa to him in his Vite. Pisano was born in Pisa and worked there most of his life. In the 1180s, he departed for Monreale, in Sicily, where he completed the doors to the cathedral before returning to Pisa, where he died. Pisano was buried at the foot of the leaning tower, where his sarcophagus was discovered in 1820.

  • Giovanni Pisano (c. 1250 – c. 1315) was an Italian sculptor, painter and architect, who worked in the cities of Pisa, Siena and Pistoia. He is best known for his sculpture which shows the influence of both the French Gothic and the Ancient Roman art. Henry Moore, referring to his statues for the facade of Siena Cathedral, called him "the first modern sculptor".

  • Nicola Pisano (also called Niccolò Pisano, Nicola de Apulia or Nicola Pisanus; c. 1220/1225 – c. 1284[1]) was an Italian sculptor whose work is noted for its classical Roman sculptural style. Pisano is sometimes considered to be the founder of modern sculpture.

  • Gil de Siloé (los historiadores del arte también le nombran como Gil de Siloe o, simplemente, Gil Siloe), fue un escultor castellano en estilo gótico activo en los últimos años del siglo XV. Hijo suyo fue Diego de Siloé, escultor y arquitecto en estilo renacentista. Su nacimiento puede datarse alrededor de 1440-50 y probablemente no mucho antes. / Gil de Siloé (Antwerp? 1440s – Burgos, 1501)

  • Diego de Siloé —también citado por los historiadores como Diego de Siloe— (Burgos; c. 1495-Granada; 22 de octubre de 1563),1​ arquitecto y escultor castellano, uno de los primeros artistas del Renacimiento en este país.

  • Claus Sluter (1340s in Haarlem[1] – 1405 or 1406 in Dijon) was a sculptor of Dutch origin.[2] He was the most important northern European sculptor of his age and is considered a pioneer of the "northern realism" of the Early Netherlandish painting that came into full flower with the work of Jan van Eyck and others in the next generation.

  • Veit Stoss (also: Veit Stoß and Stuoss; Polish: Wit Stwosz; before 1450 – about 20 September 1533) was a leading German sculptor, mostly in wood, whose career covered the transition between the late Gothic and the Northern Renaissance. His style emphasized pathos and emotion, helped by his virtuoso carving of billowing drapery; it has been called "late Gothic Baroque".[1] He had a large workshop and in addition to his own works there are a number by pupils. He is best known for the altarpiece in St. Mary's Basilica in Kraków, Poland. (Ołtarz Wita Stwosza)

With a lot** of divergent figures, we get a divergent overall statistic, and I'll be giving the two extremes:

44 46 46 48 50 50 55 | 56 | 57 58 59 60 60 60 60 |
01 02 03 04 05 06 07 | 08 | 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 |
44 46 47 48 50 50 55 | 56 | 58 60 60 61 61 61 64 |

| 61 61 61 65 65 65 66 | 67 | 68 68 70 71 72 77 83
| 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 | 23 | 24 25 26 27 28 29 30
| 65 65 66 66 67 68 68 | 70 | 70 70 71 72 72 82 83

So, minimum and maximum on both views, both long and short view, 44 and 83.

Lower quartile also identic, at 56.

Median is 60 to 61 on short view and 64 to 65 on long view.

And upper quartile is either 67 or 70.

So, on the short view, half died between 56 and 67 around 60 to 61, and on the long view, half died between 56 and 70 around 64 to 65.

Were those lives really so short, as people like to pretend?

If you look at their work, the lives were not ugly. As far as the work is a measure of the personal life, which is questionable. But on average, if many artists live ugly lives, art tends to be ugly, and if many artists live beautiful lives, art tends to be beautiful. Medieval art was.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Paris IV
CHristmas Vigil

* Down to end of stats material, text is from wiki, my own few words are in italics. So are things taken from Spanish wiki. But they are in Spanish. ** From here back to normal.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

[In answer to Q on "origin of language families"]

Creation vs. Evolution : Reviewing a paragraph from If You Believed Moses · Φιλολoγικά/Philologica : [In answer to Q on "origin of language families"]

I'll start with a quote:

It is seldom emphasized that similarities between language families are themselves susceptible to the same three explanations. That we so seldom see mention of this corollary principle is largely because twentieth-century historical linguistics has been laboring under the delusion that language families like Indo-European share no cognates with other families, thus offering nothing to compare. At this level, it is alleged, similarities simply do not exist.

What is striking is that this position—for which considerable evidence to the contrary existed already at the start of this century (Trombetti 1905) and which on a priori grounds seems most unlikely (Ruhlen 1988a)—came to be almost universally accepted by linguists, most of whom have never investigated the question themselves.

From: 14 Global Etymologies
John D. Bengtson and Merritt Ruhlen

The three explanations he is talking of are : common origin, borrowing, convergence.

Now, there is a big difference in how diverse linguists classify human languages, if you go down below the signature, you will first in figure 1 see 244 language families on which wikipedians have no doubt of common origin.

In figure 2. you will partly see groups contentiously pretending common origin for more than one of them, and partly groups that consist of one or two single languages, which could be isolates. This lands us with probably at least anything from 208 to 273 language families.

In quote 3, you will find out how Merritt Ruhlen and John D. Bengtson classify only 32 language families, of which they consider some related to each other. Amerind and Khoisan are two families not found in the wiki fact space on "primary language families" which you can usually access from each of them, like from "Algic" - a family comprising Wiyot † (extinct), Yurok and Algonquian. In Ruhlen-Bengtson, you don't find Algic or Arawakan, they are both Amerind subfamilies. Pre-Columbian America has Eskimo-Aleut, Na-Dene and Amerind and that's it. And in Central and South America, only Amerind.

By Khoisan, Ruhlen-Bengtson - I'll add, already Greenberg, whom they are folllowing - dispense with Hadza, Sandawe, Khoe, Tuu and Kx'a. All of which are found separately in figure 1.

I submit as my hunch, and that it is a hunch, that the 32 groups are valid. I also submit, since they are fewer than 72, which is the number of original languages after Babel, that some groups have converged through mutual borrowing. That is, they are not families in the strict sense.

Note well, there is one explanation which Ruhlen and Bengtson left out. Miraculous "instant family" structures. Suppose that two groups of men came to adopt Quenya and Sindarin of Tolkien. In his "legendarium" or "mythology" these are related by a common origin some millennia before they emerge as clearly different languages. Proto-Eldarin cannot be used as someone's adopted language, Tolkien only sketched it out to have sth to derive Quenya and Sindarin from. This means that both languages in actual history were constructed as artistic constructed languages between, say, 1915 and 1950 (I don't think Tolkien made any revisions after that, major ones, since he used both as background enhancers in Lord of the Rings and any even slight revision after that would still involve the text scraps in Lord of the Rings). So, the two groups would be adopting languages with a "family origin" merely sketched out and an "instant family" arising between 1915 and 1950.

What Tolkien could do with fictitious races, what two groups of Tolkien fans could do, God also can have done.

This means, some languages arising immediately at Babel could have had a common proto-language never spoken on Earth, but extant only in God's imagination.

However, this is far from the only way in which Indo-European or Semitic, even Afro-Asiatic, languages could have become language groups.

Common origin is possible, but for Afro-Asiatic, it staggers belief that Mizraim, Assur, Joctan, Kush, would all adopt the language of Peleg and their descendants have time to diversify them as much as ... Old Egyptian, Akkadian, Arabic, Ethiopian, all the while Canaaneans and Syrians adopted Hebrew and Aramaic along with descendants of Peleg. The 72 languages were extant in 2562 BC (if my reconstruction of chronology within Roman Martyrology context is correct for Peleg), which is carbon dated as 8600 BC (if my identification with Göbekli Tepe as Babel is correct) and we have Old Egyptian and Akkadian texts carbon dated (directly or indirectly, like organic material from same shelves or same tombs) to 2600 BC, which would arguably be the times of Joseph, around 1700 BC. Do 700 years really explain such a diversity?

So, this leaves two more possibilities : convergences through mutual borrowing and auxiliary languages.

In a scenario of auxiliary languages, I'd consider Sumerian was the first one. Note, it has been classified diversely as "isolate", as "Uralic" and - by Ruhlen-Bengtson - as Dené-Caucasian, if I recall correctly, related to Athapascan Apache and to Basque and to Chinese and Tibetan and to Circassian, but not to Georgian. I'd go one further, it can have been the first auxiliary language, and been part template for other ones, both Ural-Altaic and North Caucasian. And even for Bantu. Or Dravidian. Depending on whether the "blackheads" that Sargon chased away, the indigenous speakers of Sumerian, went to Africa or India.

Of course, a natural language can also serve as an auxiliary language, as English does for me, since I am not a native English speaker.

I'd venture that following auxiliary languages leading up to Indo-European were Hattic and Tyrsenian - which Alinei classifies as Old Hungarian. Then Indo-European, whether as a natural language (like Hittite) or as an articificial auxiliary language, tried to bridge Uralic and Afro-Asiatic traits. As Merritt Ruhlen and John D. Bengtson wrote, Indo-European can have outside affinities. Personal verb endings are close to Uralic, specifically Finnish.

eleipon lähden
eleipes lähdet
eleipe lähdee
eleipomen lähdemme
eleipete lähdette
eleipon lähdevät

Ablaut system and some aspects of how tense stems are formed from a common verb root seem loosely based on Afro-Asiatic, perhaps Hebrew, but note well, loosely. Semitic have basic short vowels a, i and u, along with absence of vowel, while Indo-European has (in Greek or even more reconstructed proto-form) e and o and null. Both languages insert or take away diverse extra consonants in forming diverse stems, like present stems with an extra -n- or -yod or aorist stems with an extra -s, taking the Indo-European side, which I know.

And in tenses, "classic" Indo-European (Italic, Greek, Sanskrit) combine the Uralic opposition of present and past with the Semitic opposition of ongoing or finished. In sense these overlap, and therefore a language can get along with only one of them, but Indo-European has both.

In nouns, feminines in -a (originally according to one theory -e+laryngeal 2, -eH2) seem close to Semitic feminines in -at, which in some positions is -ah. The Arabic and Akkadian case ending vowels seem echoed in at least some Indo-European forms, like -u in Latin and Greek -us/-os, -i in Old Irish and Latin Genitive -i, in Latin and Greek Dative -i and perhaps even -a in Greek third declinsion accusative -a. And if you reply this -a is really -m, well, the Arabic case endings also come with Nunation -un, -in, -an. Again, very loosely based, not at all a clear identity.

And on the other side, some similarities in the Afro-Asiatic group - notice, I don't say family, since I don't believe in a common origin - would have been there due to Hebrews being a bit everywhere, in their attempst to shirk the building of Babel - and successful ones, since God didn't punish them by language loss and new imposed language. Both in the way that some took up Hebrew instead of their own language (notably in Canaan), but also in the way that some used Hebrew as lingua franca with other neighbours and they both started adopting Hebrew features, like feminines in -at/-ah.

The other possibility for Indo-European is, languages started out on a fairly equal footing as isolates around Aegean, Iavan's language in Greece, Lud's language in Troy (more Luwian than Lydian or Phrygian, possibly), Gomerite further East in Cappadokia, notably Kanesh, whence Nesili (the indigenous term for Hittite), while they were less in mutual contact with the more or less Uralic Hattic, probable language of Canaan's son Heth. Unless, as mentioned, based on Sumerian, with some looseness. If then a certain French linguist was right and plucks up his courage again to reclassify the unclassified Cypro-Minoan language of the Caphthorim as an Aryan one, this is a fairly big hunch of Indo-European languages in a fairly small area.

Now, I have a test to do on vocabulary before I have what I consider as scientific confidence in this model, in this hunch. So long as the test is not done, it is a hunch. Nevertheless, even a hunch is a valid alternative to a theory which is based on ignoring that hunch.

But for language families or language groups outside those mentioned, I do not even have a hunch. Except mathematics, 244 "language families" are clearly more than the original ones and 32 are clearly fewer than them. I was very tempted to make an angry reply like the Genie in Aladdin on being asked for the egg of the bird Roc - that's about what you can expect from a linguist if asked to outline (as fact, not as alternative hunches) how the language families arose - unless they are of Ruhlen-Bengtson's school and trace all 32 back to "proto-world" through 27 roots. One of them could well be onomatopoic since M and GLGL sound like a baby suckling and swallowing "milk" (Indo-European meaning), from his mother's "breast" (meaning in some other language family) into his "gorge" (meaning in yet another family). While this does not rule out a common origin, it certainly poses a problem in proving Merritt Ruhlen's and John D. Bengtson's theory of proto-world by that root, since onomatopoeia is one of the areas where "convergence" rather than common origin is highly featured as a possibility. Also, Biblically, I don't believe in "common origin" of this type.

Edenics? I haven't read the paper, do not take this as a review of it, I do not want the paper to be blocked because I'd give an adverse review, I don't believe in peer review before publishing, you do with your conscience as to that paper, but if God used Hebrew as ultimate template for languages, it is possible in some cases He used as roundabout coding for it as "hala" for "penyo" or "penyo" for "hala". Perhaps one could loook up Jalaa and Plateau Penutian and see if they have words glossing Hebrew ones in the jala=peño way. I don't expect languages to have only a slight divergence from Hebrew, and I don't think any divergence from Hebrew is linguistically speaking garbling. The "confusion" or "garbling" was on the level of personal linguistic competence. Not of resulting one. Each one who had his language changed would have been fine with learning the new one if he had kept Hebrew too - except, then they would have executed Nimrod's orders, and probably trying to fuel a three step rocket with Uranium would have resulted more in like a mushroom cloud than in man walking on the Moon. So, God made cooperation impossible in the last moment.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
Vigil of St. Thomas

(Typo corrected on Boxing Day.)

Also on Boxing Day : Tolkien tinkered on with all aspects of Quenya and Sindarin up to his death, except where some aspect was already fixated through Lord of the Rings, H/T to Stephen St. John for this correction./HGL

Figure 1. Generally acknowledged families.
Abinomn · Afro-Asiatic · Ainu · Alacalufan · Algic · Alsea · Arai–Samaia · Arafundi–Piawi · Arawakan · Arauan · Araucanian · Arnhem/Macro-Gunwinyguan · Arutani–Sape · Austroasiatic · Austronesian · Aymaran A 16

Baining · Bangime · Banzsl · Barbacoan · Basque · Binanderean–Goilalan · Boran · Border · Borôroan · Bulaka River · Bunuban · Burushaski B 12 28

Caddoan · Cahuapanan · Camsá · Candoshi · Cariban · Catacaoan · Central Solomons · Chapacuran · Charruan · Chibchan · Chimakuan · Chimane · Chimariko · Chimbu–Wahgi · Chinookan · Chiquitano · Choco · Chonan · Chukotko-Kamchatkan · Chumashan · Comecrudan · Coosan · Cuitlatec C 23 51

Darwin River · Doso–Turumsa · Dravidian D 3 54

East Geelvink Bay · East Strickland · Eastern Daly · Eastern Tasmanian · Eskimo–Aleut · Elamite · Eleman · Engan E 8 62

Fas · Fulniô F 2 64

Garawan · Giimbiyu · Great Andamanese · Guaicuruan · Guajiboan · Guató G 6 70

Hadza · Haida · Harákmbut–Katukinan · Hattic · Hmong–Mien · Hodï/Joti · Huaorani/Waorani · Huave · Hurro-Urartian H 9 79

Indo-European · Iroquoian · Itonama · Iwaidjan I 4 83

Jalaa · Japonic · Jarrakan · Jê/Gê · Jicaquean · Jirajaran · Jivaroan J 7 90

Kalapuyan · Karajá · Kariri · Kartvelian · Karuk · Katembri–Taruma · Kaure–Kosare · Keresan · Khoe–Kwadi · Kiwaian · Kol · Koreanic · Kra–Dai · Krenak · Kunza · Kuot · Kusunda · Kutenai · Kutubuan · Kwomtari · Kx'a K 21 111

Lakes Plain · Leco · Lencan · Lower Mamberamo · Lower Sepik L 5 116
 Madang · Maiduan · Mairasi · Maku-Auari of Roraima · Malak-Malak · Marrgu · Mascoian · Matacoan · Maxakalian · Mayan · Meemul · Mirndi · Misumalpan · Mixe–Zoque · Mongolic · Movima · Mura-Pirahã · Muskogean M 18 134

Na-Dene · Nadahup · Nambikwaran · Niger–Congo · Nihali · Nivkh · North Bougainville · Northeast Caucasian · Northeastern Tasmanian · Northern Tasmanian · Northwest Caucasian · Nyulnyulan N 12 146

Ofayé · Ongan · Oto-Manguean · Otomákoan O 4 150

Palaihnihan · Pama–Nyungan · Pano-Tacanan · Pauwasi · Pawaia · Peba–Yaguan · Plateau Penutian · Piaroa–Saliban · Pomoan · Porome · Puinave · Purian P 12 162

Quechuan Q 1 163

Ramu R 1 164

Salishan · Sandawe · Senagi · Sentani · Sepik · Seri · Shastan · Shuwa gozoku · Shǒuyǔ · Sino-Tibetan · Siouan · Siuslaw · Skou · South Bougainville · Southern Daly · Sumerian S 16 180

Takelma · Tambora · Tangkic · Tanoan · Tarascan/Purépecha · Teberan · Tequistlatecan · Ticuna–Yuri · Timotean · Timucua · Tiniguan · Tiwi · Tor–Kwerba–Nimboran · Torricelli · Totonacan · Trans-Fly · Trans–New Guinea · Trumai · Tsimshianic · Tucanoan · Tungusic · Tupian · Turama–Kikorian · Turkic · Tyrsenian · Tziij T 26 206

Uralic · Urarina · Uru–Chipaya · Utian · Uto-Aztecan U 5 211

Wagaydyic · Wagiman · Waikuri · Wakashan · Warao · Washo · Wintuan · Wiru · Witotoan · West Papuan · Western Daly · Western Tasmanian · Worrorran W 13 224

Xincan X 1 225

Yabutian · Yam · Yamana · Yana · Yangmanic (Wardaman) · Yanomaman · Yawa · Yeniseian · Yokutsan · Yuat · Yuchi · Yukaghir · Yukian · Yuman–Cochimí · Yuracaré Y 15 240

Zamucoan · Zaparoan · Zhōngguó · Zuni Z 4 244

The ones marked with question marks would include both language isolates, adding one family, and disputed superfamilies, ridding of families. Some are families other than the ones above, and so add. "Ijaw" is considered a distinct group within "Niger Congo", so, Ijaw either is its own family or a Niger Congo group. I am considering Ijaw as + 1 (adding one group to above) and a compulsory one unless you agree with Niger Congo. Similarily, Songhay is either its own family or you agree with Nilo-Saharan. Vasconic? = Basque + extinct languages like Aquitanian and Iberic. Northeast New Guinea languages, I could not study, has no article.

Figure 2. To add or detract.
Anêm? + 1 · Aikanã? + 1 · Andoque? + 1 · Ata? + 1 (+4)

Chimuan? + 1 · Cofán? + 1 (+6)

Digaro? + 1 (+7)

Esmeralda–Yaruro? + 1 (+8)

Hibito–Cholón? + 1 · Hrusish? + 1 (+10)

Ijaw? + 1 · Irantxe? + 1 (+12)

Kadu? + 1 · Kho-Bwa? + 1 (+14)

Laal? + 1 · Lule–Vilela? + 1 (+16)

Miju? + 1 (+17)

Nilo-Saharan? + 1 · Nukak? + 1 (+19)

Shabo? + 1 · Siangic? + 1 · Songhay? + 1 · Sulka? + 1 (+23)

Taiap? + 1 · Tequiraca–Canichana? + 1 to + 2 · Totozoquean? + 1 · Tuu Mande? + 1 (+27 / +28)

Ubangian? + 1 (+28 / +29)
 Altaic? - 3 to - 5 · Austronesian–Ongan? - 1 · Austro-Tai? - 1 (-5 / -7)

Bora–Witoto languages? - 1 (-6 / -8)

Dené–Yeniseian? - 1 (-7 / -9)

Hokan? - 7 (at least) (-14 / -16)

Macro-Jê? - 5 (-19 / -21)

North Papuan? - 4 (-23 / -25)

Papuan Gulf? - 4 · Penutian? - 7 (-34 / -36)

Sino-Austronesian? - 2 (-36 / -38)

244 + 2 = 246
244 + 29 = 273
246 - 38 = 208
273 - 36 = 237

3. Quote Bengtson Ruhlen:

Specifically, we will be comparing items in the following 32 taxa, each of which we believe is a genetically valid group at some level of the classification: Khoisan, Niger-Congo, Kordofanian, Nilo-Saharan, Afro-Asiatic, Kartvelian, Indo-European, Uralic, Dravidian, Turkic, Mongolian, Tungus, Korean, Japanese-Ryukyuan, Ainu, Gilyak, Chukchi-Kamchatkan, Eskimo-Aleut, Caucasian, Basque, Burushaski, Yeniseian, Sino-Tibetan, Na-Dene, Indo-Pacific, Australian, Nahali, Austroasiatic, Miao-Yao, Daic (= Kadai), Austronesian, and Amerind.

14 Global Etymologies
John D. Bengtson and Merritt Ruhlen

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Petites questionnettes de philologie, bis

Pain bagnat est-il un beignet? · Chivas Regal, ça a quoi à faire avec les Highlands d'Écosse? ·Poubelles, manches Raglan, Cardigans ...


Pain bagnat est-il un beignet?

Pas exactement, mais, quand je me posait la question ce que serait "beignet" en italien, je tombais sur **"begnato" ce qui ne veut rien dire et ensuite "bagnato" - baigné. Le mot beignet est une variante d'orthographe pour baigné. En latin "balneatum".

Et pan bagnat veut aussi dire "pain baigné". En latin "panem balneatum".

Le type de bain diffère. Le beignet est beigné (ou baigné ou baignet ou beignet justement) en huile bouillante au lieu d'avoir une cuisson classique. Il est aussi sucré (après cette cuisson).

Il pan bagnat par contre è bagnat après la cuecha en òli crus e en poma d'amor.

(Par contre, le pain bagnat est baigné après la cuisson en huile d'olive crue et en tomate).

Bonus, le verbe baigner en latin n'est pas "balneare" ou "balneari" en latin classique, mais ... "tingere" pour le processus derrière le beignet et "perfundere" pour ce qu'on fait avec le pan bagnat (à moins que ce soit l'inverse). Par contre, un endroit où on est capable de "lavari" est appelé, en substantif, "balneum".

En plus, le "beignet" s'appellait "laganum" en latin.

revenir au contenu


Chivas Regal, ça a quoi à faire avec les Highlands d'Écosse?

En fait, le nom du whisky vient du nom de deux distributeurs et distilleurs d'Aberdeen, les frères Chivas.

Leur nom de famille ne se prononce pas comme "ch" en anglais, "tch", mais comme le "ch" du français, donc ce serait "sh" en anglais.

D'où ça? Le nom commun "síobhas" en gaélique se prononce "chivas" (comme en français), signifie ciboulette, et ceci de dit "chives" en anglais (à prononcer "tchaïvz").

Pour le nom propre Chivas, prendre la prononciation gaélique et affubler avec une orthographe inspiré de l'anglais. C'est donc Síobhas déguisé en Chives, mais juste légèrement.

Si vous voulez prendre votre whisky avec un plat de ciboulette, libre à vous de le faire, pour ma part, il me semble que les frères Chivas ont peut-être surdosé sur ciboulette à la ferme et se sont mis sur le whisky pour avoir autre chose à faire. Je crois que les ciboulettes vont mieux dans le pan bagnat - mais ceci est une questionnette gastronomique, pas philologique.

revenir au contenu


Poubelles, manches Raglan, Cardigans ...

La poubelle comme nom commun d'un objet usuelle vient de son inventeur (au moins dans la préfecture de Paris) Eugène-René Poubelle, qui était un préfet de Paris.

Par contre, d'où vient son nom de famille?

"Origine : poubelle est un matronyme localise en champagne et bourgogne, represente un sobriquet qui signifie peu belle ."

La manche Raglan vient de FitzRoy James Henry Somerset (30 septembre 1788 – 28 juin 1855), 1er baron Raglan, militaire puis diplomate britannique.

Et le baron Raglan est baron de Raglan en Monmouth County. Pays de Galles. Pour son toponyme, il semble y avoir un doute s'il est gallois ou anglais. Une source médiéval refère à "Ragland" - ce qui en anglais dirait "pays(age) de lambeaux". Rhaglan en gallois viendrait de Rhag + llan, donc "pré-paroisse" selon mes lumières limitées sur cette langue. Ce serait alors le village (il y a un village) avant la paroisse.

Un pull vient de l'anglais pullover, mais on dit en anglais plus souvent Cardigan. Le "sweatshirt" (chemise à suer) est appelé pour James Thomas Brudenell, 7e comte de Cardigan, qui est aussi immortalisé par le poëme "Charge of the Light Brigade" par Tennyson. Le premier comte de Cardigan soutenait le roi Charles I dans la Guerre Civile d'Angleterre. Il était Catholique et il soutenait le roi parce que les Roundheads étaient pour davantage d'intolérance contre les Catholiques. Pendant la période de Cromwell, il était enfermé dans le Tour de Londres, et il fit élévé à ce peerage suivant la Restauration de Charles II, fils du roi défunt.

Je ne sais pas si ça a ou non une connection avec la ville en Pays de Galles, Aberteifi en Gallois (abèrtèïvi), Cardigan en anglais, et qui fut autrefois la capitale du royaume Ceredigion. Et Ceredigion en son tour est "la terre de Ceredig" (kérédigue). Et Ceredig est le gallois pour latin Coroticus. Pourtant, ce n'est pas le même Coroticus qui était excommunié pour esclavagisme par St. Patrick. D'ailleurs, je ne trouve pas étymologie pour Ceredig, ni pour Coroticus. Si je ne sais pas, je crois que la meilleure réponse est de dire que je ne sais pas.

Cédric est une forme anglicisé de Ceredig. Mais si Cédric avait été la vraie forme du nom, ça aurait été non Coroticus, mais **Cotorix ou **Cautorix en latin. Et, contrairement à Coroticus, ça n'existe pas.

La terre de quel Ceredig, alors? "Le nom de Ceredigion signifie terre de Ceredig, qui était un fils de Cunedda, un chef breton qui reconquit la plupart du pays de Galles au détriment des Irlandais aux alentours du Ve siècle." Son petit-fils était le Saint David du pays de Galles (oui, en pays de Galles, on s'appelle David, ce n'est pas toujours pour l'ancêtre de Notre Seigneur).

revenir au contenu

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Answering Kudrophobia

Here are ten films which premièred in France and came from US.,_2016),_2016),_2016)

Now, taking producer, director, screenplay, three main actors, I get these results:

7 % if we take only Jews. 18 % if we add people probably not Jewish themselves but of Jewish connexions.

Overrepresented? Probably. Dominant? Not in numbers, at least.

And if we take another minority, known Christian affiliation is higher than known Jewish one : 11 % for the 3 Catholics, one Anglican (even if they say Episcopalian over across the Atlantic), one Mormon or probably ex-Mormon and one with at least acquaintance with Church of Christ.

Pepperdine college is also where the recent convert to Catholicism, Lizzie Reezay, went. Definitely not a place for confessional Jews. They would certainly be respected, but as certainly feel somewhat out of place.

Disclaimer : "not Jewish" or "pas Juif / pas Juive" means not known to be Jewish.

This means, the Jewish stats for those films could rise, if some people with no background or no religious clue in background come forth as saying they are Jewish./HGL

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Two Studies in Naiveté

One blog post. (Link a bit lower).

First about John Chau:

[A] man wearing a white crown possibly made of flowers [took] a “leadership stance” by standing atop the tallest coral rock on the beach. The man yelled, and Mr. Chau tried to respond, singing some worship songs and yelling back something in Xhosa, a language he apparently knew a few words of from when he coached soccer in South Africa a few years ago.

Comment by the Atheist blogger:

That’s an interesting linguistic advance. It makes no more sense to address the Sentinelese in English, of course, but Chau’s choice of Xhosa — a language spoken by black people five thousand miles away — seems to point to the neo-colonial notion that the vast cultural differences between darker-skinned people can be papered over with a little bit of “primitive” argot that the white (or Asian) visitor, in his magnanimity, has taken it upon himself to learn.

I tend to agree. This linguistic naiveté parallels the historical one when an Evangelical thinks an observation about 300 AD (there was a Church which as yet owed nothing to Constantine) or an observation about 1400 AD (lots of common people speaking neither Latin nor Greek, presence in some places of sects opposed to Catholicism, at least one attempt of translating Bible to modern vernacular language) is a valid comment on the situation in 400 AD and criteria by which to judge the Church that owed part of their position to Constantine and Theodosius (variously known as Catholic or Orthodox, depending on whether Catholic, Orthodox, Evangelical or Anglican is presenting it).

Now, next item of naiveté, this one is on the Atheist blogger himself, not on John Chau:

Above all, by attempting to foist himself upon the tribespeople, he risked wiping out every one of them, as the hyper-isolated islanders likely have no resistance to viral illnesses like the measles and influenza.

In all appearance he was a healthy man up to when a certain arrow or sth put an end to it. There is no indication he had measles and certainly no indication he had a flu.

But, suppose (which I don't, but I am not a med student, I am only the son of one), there really was such a risk, how naive is it to justify the killing by pointing this out? If the guy himself had no idea about it, how likely is it the Sentinelese tribe had so? And how naive is it to judge a man as jeopardising other peoples' lives if the "salient" fact is not so salient to anyone outside med school.

Yes, if you come to a tribe with a flu, a measle infection, a small pox infection - as happens when a lot of Europeans come to a country - you do jeopardise the health and even lives of people without that resistance. But John Chau is not a lot of people and was visibly not carrying any ongoing infection. And if invisibly carrying a virus you are immune to and are not sneezing out in flu is at all likely to affect anyone else, even if you don't go out of your way to positively infect them, that would be something we people outside med school are blissfully unaware of.

A University education is not the same thing as a med school education.

Dead Missionary John Chau’s Last Letter Home Reveals Outsized Zeal and Naiveté
By Terry Firma | November 24, 2018

I think that this site (Friendly Atheist) was started by Hemant Mehta who is med school - former such - but it seems that Terry Firma isn't even into med school. I think (up to upcoming evidence to the contrary, medical articles) that the danger here proposed is simply hearsay, projected from historic happenings which had a much more contagious background. I suspect Terry has some mysophobic or bacteriophobic traits ...

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
Holy Martyrs of Antioch
Bishop Basil, Auxilius
and Saturninus

PS, I was trying to trace the issue, and it seems part of the thing really is about contact with slightly ill forreigners and also, this part is at most a part of why the Indians were restricting access to the Andanese tribe. Resham Sengar will write one article with a loose claim, Philip Whiteside and Alix Culbertson will cite and uncritically link to Stephen Corry, whose activism - for such it it - has very many other problems to face than idealistic, single handed missionaries risking their own lives. Guaraní in Brazil have more pains from present day governments, for instance, than from the 16th to 17th C. Jesuits. And yes, they are one of the people on Stephen Corry's list of actions. The fact is, Jesuits were the Stephen Corry's of their time and really did protect Guaranís from exploitation and from visitors bringing diseases. And the Reductions were worse attacked by Portuguese than by Spanish colonies, and unsurprisingly, the Guaraní he is advocating for are in Brazil, while in Paraguay Guaraní is everyone's second or first language. It is still not at all clear how John Chau, being in full health, could have posed a medical risk to the tribe. It looks more like a "Chinese whispers" or "telephone game" situation./HGL

PPS, here is what I found : Sentinelese on wiki links to Know how 60,000 year-old human tribe of secluded North Sentinel Island behaves with outsiders by Resham Segar and to Sky News which links to Stephen Corry's Survival International where I see this on Progress can kill involving a suicide statistic on the Guaraní of ... Brazil./HGL

A Writer's Plan

If you have ever thought, "oh, I got chapter 1 and 2 alright, and I know the end and two parts of the turning points, but how awful to come up with chapter 3!" - well, here is a plan:

Actually the video is about sth else, the trope Time Travel, but if this is true of stories about time travel, it is also true of other stories.

Trope Talk: Time Travel
Overly Sarcastic Productions | 16.XI.2018

That is how I am going about Chronicle of Susan Pevensie - this conspectus of extant chapters is giving them in the right reading order, not the order I wrote them in./HGL

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Why Romanides was Wrong

Here is Romanides' idea, first resumed, then quoted:

"Romanides sees St Augustine as the great antagonist of Orthodox thought. Romanides claims that, although he was a saint, Augustine did not have theoria. Many of his theological conclusions, Romanides says, appear not to come from experiencing God and writing about his experiences of God; rather, they appear to be the result of philosophical or logical speculation and conjecture.[note 3] Hence, Augustine is still revered as a saint, but, according to Romanides, does not qualify as a theologian in the Eastern Orthodox church.[8]"

John Romanides : [discussion of saint] Augustine of Hippo

Looking up "note 3":

[7] A basic characteristic of the Frankish scholastic method, mislead by Augustinian Platonism and Thomistic Aristotelianism, had been its naive confidence in the objective existence of things rationally speculated about. By following Augustine, the Franks substituted the patristic concern for spiritual observation, (which they had found firmly established in Gaul when they first conquered the area) with a fascination for metaphysics. They did not suspect that such speculations had foundations neither in created nor in spiritual reality. No one would today accept as true what is not empirically observable, or at least verifiable by inference, from an attested effect. So it is with patristic theology. Dialectical speculation about God and the Incarnation as such are rejected. Only those things which can be tested by the experience of the grace of God in the heart are to be accepted. "Be not carried about by divers and strange teachings. For it is good that the heart be confirmed by grace," a passage from Hebrews 13.9, quoted by the Fathers to this effect.

Looking up "7":


Now, what is the central problem?

"No one would today accept as true what is not empirically observable, or at least verifiable by inference, from an attested effect."

And when exactly did St Augustine or St Thomas Aquinas differ from this method, either the object of knowledge is seen, heard, smelled, tasted, felt, or it is inferred from sth other which is so and which is effect of it?

By the way, verifying that the directly verified "x" is indeed effect of the inferred "y" is a bit trickier than Romanides imagined.

What if it is instead the effect of "z" which has not yet been proposed as inference?

What if it is instead the effect of "w" which is also directly verified, but not linked to the directly verified "x" in the common paradigm?

Well, how exactly do we figure out which inferrences are valid and which aren't?

By being good scholastics, which is precisely what Romanides opted out from. What he rejected as a Frankish and ultimately Augustinian aberration.

So, scholastically speaking, is there something wrong with the sentence quoted already twice which I now quote a third time?

"No one would today accept as true what is not empirically observable, or at least verifiable by inference, from an attested effect."

Yes, there is. "No one would today accept as true" - not only is the "no one" part presented as a fact, when probably it is not, but also "today" is presented as a reliable criterium. What died Owen Barfield (an esotoric, but on at least one item less heterodox than Romanides) call this kind of attitude? "Chronological snobbery". Did this attitude of Barfield's bear fruit? Yes, C. S. Lewis' conversion to Christianity (incomplete since he didn't become a Catholic) would have been impeded indefinitely, if he had not learned from Owen Barfield that Chronological snobbery is wrong. And C. S. Lewis can in turn give us mor reliable information than Romanides about the Latin West, whether Frankish or Anglo-Saxon. Including on St. Thomas Aquinas. Or on Bishop Tempier.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St. Cecily, Virgin and Martyr

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Were the Inklings a Forbidden Society? No.

Here is Baltimore Catichism n° 3 on what societies we must keep out of:

  • Q. 1228. What societies in general are we forbidden to join?

  • A. In general we are forbidden to join:
    • 1. All societies condemned by the Church;
    • 2. All societies of which the object is unlawful and the means used sinful;
    • 3. Societies in which the rights and freedom of our conscience are violated by rash or dangerous oaths;
    • 4. Societies in which any false religious ceremony or form of worship is used.

Were the Inklings condemned by the Church? No.

Was their object unlawful? Was the means used sinful?

The object was Christian men of diverse confessions discussing "letters" and sometimes also producing such.

The means involved meeting in a bar and reading ongoing literary projects to each other. The quantities of beer consumed are presumed to have been below each person's level of tolerance.

I also presume Tolkien and the Catholic Physician known as "useless quack" were not supposed to pray together with non-Catholics, they held no prayer meetings.

Was their right and freedom of conscience violated by a rash or dangerous oath? No. There was no oath and no formal procedure for adding a new member.

Was any false religious ceremony or form of worship used? If so, that would have excluded Tolkien and at first his son Christopher Tolkien immediately, as they were Catholics in good standing. Up to 1962, this would have meant membership in the real Catholic Church and C. S. Lewis (never an actual Catholic by formal reception in the Church and never expressing a final desire to join it, alas) died in 1963.

His final unitary work, posthumously published (but several essay collections and torsos were published after that) was Letters to Malcolm, chiefly on prayer. In it, he refuses to speak up much on liturgic prayer (since not the right person to say anything), except for one thing, liturgy ought to change only in response to pastors of the Church discovering a doctrinal error in the porevious one, and he said he disliked liturgic changes within Anglicanism, and mentioned Catholics had been complaining about that too.

That sentence was very probably referring to John Ronald Reuel Tolkien. He is known to have detested the liturgic changes brought on in the end by a combination of a Vatican II document (Sacrosanctum Concilium was published after CSL had died, but preceded by some sporadic more cautious experimentation) and its application or misapplication by Antiopope Montini (whom JRRT was accepting as Pope until he died in 1973).

So, Inklings cannot have had common religious ceremonies, perhaps except for meal prayers, if Catholics had a dispensation to say grace with non-Catholics, but arguably they each said grace over a preceding meal before going to the pub or said grace silently each according to his own liturgic tradition. Probably, unlike Chesterton, they did not say grace over the beer.

In other words, joining the Inklings was no sin.

Against this has been alleged that they included Owen Barfield known to be Steinerian, esoteric, but this is because C. S. Lewis and Owen Barfield were friends even before C. S. Lewis converted to Christianity. It was Owen Barfield's description of Chronological Snobbery which cured C. S. Lewis of the illusion that Christianity must be wrong because a thing in those days more and more (in England's bourgeoisie) of the past.

It has also been alleged that C. S. Lewis had a duty to avoid Barfield's company and failing that became himself a company to avoid.

I do not think that the duty to avoid freemasons adds up to avoiding people who were one's friends before one converted, and even if it did, I do not think the failure to live up to that supposed duty would constitute a masonic initiation and make C. S. Lewis himself a bad company. Not to mention that if Steinerians were condemned ... yes, they were, by the way, and this may explain quite a lot on why C. S. Lewis did not convert to Catholicism. They were condemned in 1919 as a society or as a doctrine, and that was the year in which C. S. Lewis became Owen Barfield's friend.

Anthroposophy was condemned by the Roman Catholic Church in 1919.

From : Anthroposophy
by Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J. (New Catholic Encylopedia, Vol. 1, 1967, pp. 615-616

This would also explain why Tolkien displayed what C. S. Lewis considered as "jealousy" of Owen Barfield - Tolkien was trying to get his Jack away from Steiner at times. Not that he was really into it. Anyway, when C. S. Lewis became Barfield's friend, he was not yet Christian and could not be expected to obey a condemnation by the Catholic Church. Either way, an Inkling meeting was not a Theosophic ritual or Anthroposophic ritual. Being part of the Inklings was not obviously violating the rules as outlined above by the Catechism.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St. Gregory of Tours

"Story of the City" and Pewter Society (links)

Both links deal with History of Urban settlements.

Here are the links:

International Study Centre for the History of Cities

Alessandro Camiz, Ph.D. candidate in History of Cities, University of Rome “La Sapienza”

Also in English (same as previous otherwise)

The Pewter Society

Friday, November 16, 2018

This Guy is Supposed to Have Known Medieval Education System Better than I ...

I don't think so, presenting Valentin PIVK:

Slovene "English" courtesy of Google translate
Rodil se je na kmetiji Pri petelinu, kjer je bilo šest otrok. He was born on the farm Pri petelinu, where there were six children.
Jeseni leta 1940 je pričel obiskovati prvi razred »hribovske šole« v Žireh, In the autumn of 1940 he began to attend the first class of the "mountain school" in Žiri,
vendar razreda ni dokončal, but did not finish the class,
ker se je pričela druga svetovna vojna. because the Second World War began.
V hribovske šole so hodili otroci iz hribovitih delov samo trikrat na teden in to popoldan in so prišli samo do četrtega razreda, Only three times a week, children from the hilly mountains went to the hill schools this afternoon, and they came only to the fourth grade,
potem so jih posadili spet v predhodne razrede. then they were planted again in the previous classes.
Zaradi odhoda brata v partizane namesto v nemško vojsko, Due to the departure of the brother into partisans instead of the German army,
je bila vsa družina internirana v Nemčijo. the entire family was interned in Germany.
Brat je kot partizan padel. Brother as a partisan fell.
Po vojni je v šolskem letu 1945/46 končal četrti razred osnovne šole v Žireh, After the war, in the school year 1945/46 he finished the fourth grade of elementary school in Žiri,
leta 1949 nižjo gimnazijo v Žireh in leta 1953 je maturiral na gimnaziji v Kranju. in 1949 lower gymnasium in Žiri, and in 1953 graduated from gymnasium in Kranj.
Leta 1959 je diplomiral iz fizike na Prirodoslovno-matematični fakulteti v Ljubljani. In 1959 he graduated from physics at the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics in Ljubljana.
Leta 1978 pa opravil še magisterij na Ekonomski fakulteti v Ljubljani. In 1978, he completed his master's degree at the Faculty of Economics in Ljubljana.
Po odsluženju vojaškega roka v JLA je med letoma 1960 in 1970 poučeval fiziko in matematiko na gimnaziji v Škofji Loki, After serving military service in the JLA, he taught physics and mathematics at the gymnasium in Škofja Loka between 1960 and 1970,
kjer je med drugim, where it is, inter alia,
na komaj ustanovljeni gimnaziji, to a barely established gymnasium,
pričel postavljati kabinet za fiziko in usmerjati dijake na tekmovanja Gibanje znanost mladini. began to set up a cabinet for physics and direct students to competitions Youth Science.
Leta 1970 je prišel na Gimnazijo Kranju, In 1970 he came to the Gymnasium Kranj,
kjer je prva štiri leta poučeval matematiko in fiziko, where he taught mathematics and physics for the first four years,
naslednjih 22 let pa je bil ravnatelj. and the next 22 years he was the director.
V času njegovega ravnateljevanja kranjska gimnazija ni samo ohranila, During his tenure, the Carniolan Gymnasium not only maintained,
ampak je povečala ugled kvalitetne šole. but it has increased the quality of a quality school.
Z dograditvijo in obnovo ter prenovo so več kot podvojili šolske uporabne površine in kot ravnatelj je bil v začetku med redkimi pobudniki in zagovorniki vrnitve gimnazije in sedanje mature v slovenski srednješolski prostor. With the upgrading, renovation and renovation, more than doubled the school use areas, and as headmaster was initially among the early initiators and advocates of the return of the gymnasium and the current maturity in the Slovenian upper secondary school.
V osemdesetih in začetku devetdesetih let prejšnjega stoletja je bil tudi višji predavatelj kvantitativnih ekonomskih analiz na Visoki ekonomsko-komercialni šoli, In the 1980s and early 1990s he was also a senior lecturer of quantitative economic analyzes at the High Economic and Commercial School,
pozneje Ekonomsko-poslovni fakulteti v Mariboru. later the Faculty of Economics and Business in Maribor.
Bil je zelo aktiven mladinski, He was a very active youth,
študentski in pozneje v službi tudi sindikalni funkcionar. student and later in the service also a union official.
Za svoje delo je leta 1976 prejel odlikovanje predsednika SFRJ, For his work, in 1976 he received the decoration of the President of the SFRY,
tj. red republike z bronastim vencem, ie. the order of the republic with a bronze wreath,
leta 1985 priznanje izobraževalne skupnosti Kranj, in 1985 the recognition of the educational community Kranj,
leta 1997 nagrado Republike Slovenije na področju šolstva in leta 2000 nagrado Mestne občine Kranj. in 1997 the prize of the Republic of Slovenia in the field of education and in 2000 the prize of the Municipality of Kranj.
Stanuje v Kranju in občasno na vikendu v rojstnem Žirovskem vrhu. He resides in Kranj and occasionally on the weekend in his birthplace Žirovski vrh.
Ima dva sinova in štiri vnuke. He has two sons and four grandchildren.
Kot upokojenec se je doslej precej ukvarjal z raziskovanjem in pisanjem o zgodovini kranjske gimnazije. As a retired, he has so far been very concerned with researching and writing about the history of Kranjska gimnazija.
Veliko hodi v naravo, Many walk in nature,
poskuša odkriti še kaj zanj neodkritega doma in tudi v tujini. trying to discover something else for him at home and abroad.
Malo vrtnari in vedno več bere. A little gardeners and more and more read.
Vsa leta svojega dela v šolstvu se je aktivno ukvarjal z vprašanji organizacije šolstva, Throughout his years of schooling, he has been actively involved with the issues of organizing school,
vsebine šolskih programov in financiranja šolstva. content of school programs and financing of education.
S teh področij je napisal okoli 90 člankov in razprav, From these areas, he wrote about 90 articles and debates,
ki so bili objavljeni v Prosvetnem delavcu/Šolskih razgledih, which were published in the Educational Worker / School Views,
reviji Vzgoja in izobraževanje, Journal of Education and Training,
Naših razgledih, Our views,
Delu, Delu,
Gorenjskem glasu in periodičnih zbornikih Gimnazije Kranj. The Gorenjska voice and periodicals of the Gymnasium Kranj.

No doubt, in his way a worthy gentleman.

Also, the kind of worthy gentleman, I fear, whom I had to do with when my life was ruined for decades and my ma's life not helped up in Sysslebäck - a very beautiful village with beautiful nature, but too dominated by the networking of worthy gentlemen like that.

But that an ardent Antifascist, decorated Titoist Communist, specialised in Physics, Mathematics and Economics, teacher, school director and hobby debater published in not very academic (and especially nothing in history field) journals should teach ME what happened in the Renaissance and Reformation era to education system? No, not unless you limit it to the area he specialised in : the Krajnska Gimnazijum (which may even have been founded as late as 1810, or refounded during Napoleonic Wars, according to one title, and therefore would have very little bearing on the question), and unfortunately, one man was citing him as an overall expert on the era.

He is possibly biassed in extremes, like most who were Communists. And as a director of a gymnasium, especially for school access to all and against all who are even by some people reputed to have been obscurantist - a reputation Commies were heavily loading off onto Roman Catholic Church.

He is certainly the wrong academic field to tell me the wider picture on education before and after 1500. He could no doubt tell me some facts about things specific to Slovenia, but he would hardly be the best authority on the wider question.

As a bonus, any English speaker can tell Slovenes that some of the sentences google translate put into "English" is not really English. It is Slovene with an English disguise, and that is not always comprehensible to someone speaking English but not Slovene. And it would have been worse if I had not hacked up the Slovene text at every comma and full stop - such being the short phrase conditions best adapted to google translate.

Now, hope he does not take this as an attack on his person, but, he was cited, I have been forced to reply about him, which I did.

Imaš zelo dober dan, Gospod Pivk! Upam, da ne bo trda čustva?

That was also google translate, but if it's correct, it's probably because I hacked my message up into three pieces, before translating.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St Gertrude's Day

Monday, November 12, 2018

Do Macron and Merkel Know the History of World War I?

War of 14 a Rehearsal for Harmageddon? · Do Macron and Merkel Know the History of World War I?

I just saw an article promoting some excerpts from their speeches yesterday. I will now link to it and then comment on excerpt after excerpt.

mail . com : Excerpts of French, German speeches commemorating WWI's end

First, let me note, as having grown up partly in Germany and as residing in France, I am NOT against their immediate purported goal, fraternity between German and French.

I have some issues with their historiography though.


"Patriotism is the exact opposite of nationalism: Nationalism is a betrayal of patriotism. In saying 'our interests first, whatever happens to the others,' you erase the most precious thing a nation can have, that which makes it lives, that which causes it to be great and that which is most important: Its moral values."

Totally depends on what kind of nationalism we are dealing with, not all are bad and obviously not all are good.

Also, as I suppose this is with reference to preludes of WW-I, German régime, while manipulating a popular nationalism (with even some Anti-French bias, both born in 1813 in the Völkerschlacht bei Leipzig which beat Napoleon's troops), was not itself a nationalist régime, rather it was an élitist and bureaucratic régime, trying to "manage" nationalism in a good way, but not really nationalist itself.

The one extreme nationalist involved was Gavril Princip - he was ready to kill in open street to get his nation rid of an imperialist oppressor.

"I know, the old demons are resurging, ready to finish off their work of chaos and death. New ideologies manipulate religions, push a contagious obscurantism. Sometimes, history threatens to retake its tragic course and threaten our heritage of peace that we believed we had definitively settled with our ancestors' blood."

Obscurantism is definitely NOT one of the old demons from just before WW-I.

If Austro-Hungary protected Bosniaks, it was not because they were Muslims. Austro-Hungary was a Catholic power with ample religious tolerance.

If Serbs had a somewhat more religiously communitarian take, it was because of bitter memories of Turks. The Serbian side definitely showed some talent of building a multi-religious (but not multi-ethnic as to include Germans in charge in administration) state between the two World Wars. It was known as Kraljevina Srbov, Hrvatov in Slovencev or as Kraljevina Jugoslavija. Muslims were disfavoured, but definitely not persecuted. A truly "obscurantist" régime would not have been able to do this.

So, where in all the build-up to this war does Macron find the "obscurantism" which he considers as an "old demon" resurging?

And as for "definitely settling a heritage of peace"? Come on! Will not happen until Harmageddon. Chamberlain thought he had settled "peace in our time", and while he was wrong, he was at least realistic, he did not say "for all times to come".

"For four years, Europe almost committed suicide. Humanity had sunk into a hideous labyrinth of merciless battles, in a hell that engulfed all fighters, whichever side they were on, whatever nationality they had ... 10 million dead, 6 million injured and mutilated, 3 million widows, 6 million orphans, millions of civilian victims."


But let's put it down to where the blame belongs. Imperial bureaucracies, disregarding Christian morality, a Kantian (I suppose without being expert on that "philosopher") sense of "obedience" as solution to problem how to tell right from wrong in society ... obeying even evils when there is reason of state ... and not "nationalism" or "obscurantism."

Unless, of course, you want to blame posthumously both Serbia and US for the war, rather than Austria and Germany.

I would say Austria was fairly innocent except the part of the ultimatum. They were of course nothing like nationalist in it, they were simply asking a police case be solved by competent police, like Bush not trusting Taliban to track Ben Laden down for him. But they were disregarding the possibility of a nationalist revulsion against this.

And even then, you only have nationalism, not "obscurantism."


"This war, with its senseless bloodshed, showed where national arrogance and military hubris can lead. And it made clear what disastrous consequences a lack of compromise in politics and diplomacy can have."

Did Germany have some national arrogance? Arguably, yes.

But it was not nationalist arrogance, rather it was arrogance of the most progressive state, as Prussian-Germany thought itself to be. Much like later Sovietic arrogance, from régime quarters, was not Russian or Pan-Slavic nationalist arrogance, but arrogance of being most progressive state (on a somewhat but not totally different model of how progress should go on).

Military hubris is of course correct - especially about violating Belgian neutrality.

"It's anything but self-evident" that Germany and France should have such friendship now, "especially after the suffering that Germans caused to their neighbor, to Europe and the world in two world wars."

Hope it lasts, anyway.

Not sure Merkel is not overdoing the German part in causing suffering, but humility is at least a decent attitude.

"The First World War showed us what kind of ruin isolationism can lead us into. And if seclusion wasn't a solution 100 years ago, how could it be so today?"

What exact state was isolationist?


Germany previous to WW-I was anything but. They had tried to isolate France on the pretext it was nationalistic and expansive, but there was no attempt to isolate Germany itself. On the contrary, it was part of the one complex of competing alliances.

There was an attempt of US to isolate itself - and US entry into the war ended US isolationism.

It was this end of US isolationism which brought on Woodrow Wilson's very generous attitude to all nationalisms, except the German one (to some extent even including it). It was Woodrow Wilson's solution which brought the Sudetenland into two competing nationalisms, that of Benesh and that of Hitler.

Would a German victory have been preferrable? With my take on Schleswig Holstein and on Königgrätz, as well as how I see Bismarck's Kulturkampf (a war on what he termed "obscurantism") - I don't quite think so, no.

The Austrian peace, as negotiated by Pope Benedict XV and willed by Charles the Last would have been preferrable, though.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St. Josaphat of Polotsk

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Is this valid in your English? It is in mine.

In the following snip of dialogue, correlate in one man's sentence is followed by its relative pronoun in another man's sentence. I have underlined correlate and the relative.

Henrikas Klovas
Follow the link, “Starting in the late 3rd century BCE, politicians began distributing grain to the lower classes, mostly to men who could vote, in an effort to gain popularity and get elected…”

Hans-Georg Lundahl
Which takes care of a certain claim that "the present concern" St Paul was talking of to Corinthians was not a question on relative values overall of marriage and virginity, but a famine.

It needed no famine to have grain distributions in Roman Empire.

I can restate my sentence this way:

The fact, that “[s]tarting in the late 3rd century BCE, politicians began distributing grain to the lower classes, mostly to men who could vote, in an effort to gain popularity and get elected…”, takes care of a certain claim that "the present concern" St Paul was talking of to Corinthians was not a question on relative values overall of marriage and virginity, but a famine.

Or, if even this is too big a mouthful for you, like this:

The fact, that “[s]tarting in the late 3rd century BCE, politicians began distributing grain to the lower classes, mostly to men who could vote, in an effort to gain popularity and get elected…”, is a fact that takes care of a certain claim that "the present concern" St Paul was talking of to Corinthians was not a question on relative values overall of marriage and virginity, but a famine.

It seems, today all Bibles I can access have replaced "the present concern" with "the thing you were writing about", but that is another matter.

My point is, as given in next sentence of mine : It needed no famine to have grain distributions in Roman Empire.

In other words, "it is better for a man not to marry" was written as an answer about God's normal everyday preferences for Christian lives and not as an answer about what urgency measure to take in a famine.

Perhaps some people don't think it is good grammar to use the other guy's last sentence as correlate for a relative pronoun starting your first one, but I do.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St Andrew Avellini

PS, Since someone wondered about the use of neuter pronoun:

Hans-Georg Lundahl
neuter pronouns also refer to verbs and sentences

that is for instance their only function in Spanish, where lo can never refer to a neuter noun, since Spanish has only masculine and feminine ones

it is also one of the neuter pronouns' functions in Latin and Greek

Thursday, November 8, 2018

When it Comes to Inquisitions and Witches

there are people willing to quote one Kurt Baschwitz.

For those reading German:

Siegfried Kurt Baschwitz (* 2. Februar 1886 in Offenburg; † 6. Januar 1968 in Amsterdam) war ein deutsch-holländischer Journalist, Sozialpsychologe und Publizistikwissenschaftler. Baschwitz, der seine journalistische Tätigkeit 1908 begann, ist vor allem für seine Bücher über die Masse und Massenwahn bekannt. Von 1909 bis 1924 war Baschwitz Redakteur beim Hamburger Fremdenblatt, u. a. als Korrespondent in den Niederlanden. Danach arbeitete er bis 1928 für die Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (DAZ). Ab Juli 1929 amtierte Baschwitz als Chefredakteur des Verlegerorgans Zeitungsverlag (ZV) in Berlin, aus dem er im April 1933 entlassen wurde. Als Sohn jüdischer Eltern musste er anschließend fliehen und ging in die Niederlande.

Kurt Baschwitz

For establishing facts about the topic, he is:

  • wrong discipline
  • wrong regional background in Germany and also otherwised biassed
  • and wrong time, since better historiography was made available after he died.

What he had to say about mass hysteria may be very correct, but it was not so correct of him to project it on the Inquisitions hunting witches (Salem seems a bit more like what he was talking of, but even there some have dug up some credible arguments there could have been real witchcraft around).

Fortunately, there are people of Jewish background these days who seem more truthful and less biassed, more fair and less interested in calling opponents jerks who have researched Inquisition. One of their defenders is one Kamen, and I did not know, but he is a Polish Jew. Or, perhaps that was a fake info I saw, here is an article not saying such a thing:

Anyway, his researfch on Inquisition is more recent than Baschwitz:

The Spanish Inquisition: A Historical Revision. London and New Haven: Yale University Press (1997)

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
Octave of All Souls