Posted in September 2014

A Shark Catch

This is from the Gentleman’s Magazine of 1757: “A large green shark was taken in the Tweed, a little above the Bridge at Berwick, which was 6 feet long. It affrightened the fishermen greatly, before they saw it, imagined they had got a great haul of salmon, the net being so difficult to draw in … Continue reading

Always Tested at Home First

This is from Timothy Brennan’s book, Secular Devotion Afro-Latin Music and Imperial Jazz: “The European struggles waged in the 17th and 18th centuries against monarchy and religious absolutism (which took place at the apex of imperial expansion) guaranteed that intellectuals would define civilization in terms of reason, logic, and the mind – qualities more closely … Continue reading

Female Incontinency

This is more from John Evelyn’s diary of August 1631: “I Pass’d thro’ Delft, and visited the Church, where was the monument of Prince William of Nassau, and his sonn and successor, Grave Maurice. The Senat-house hath a very stately Portico, supported with very choyse pillars of black marble, as I remember, of one entire … Continue reading

Dutch Paintings for Farmers

Those paintings I’ve seen of 17th century houses from the Netherlands always intrigued me as to why they covered their walls with art – they always seem too cluttered, even for me. Here’s an explanation, though I’m not sure if it’s right. This is from John Evelyn’s Diary, of 1641 on his travels in the … Continue reading

Rough Justice

This is from the Derby Mercury newspaper of September 1749: “Yesterday a young man was detected in picking the Pocket of a Person at the Pay Office on Broad Street and was delivered up to the Populace who had him to a neighbouring horse pond, and after well ducking him, they stript him quite naked … Continue reading

Mariners’ Church

Mariners’ Church

England has traditionally been protected by its wooden walls, so the ultimate soldiers of these islands are, if you like, its mariners. So, men who go to sea have a special place in all our hearts, so I have a special interest in their welfare. The mariners church in Bristol was built as a welfare … Continue reading

Another Light Ship

Another Light Ship

This one is on the edge of the Gloucester Docks development, and has been converted to a residence and natural therapy/Buddhist centre with of course a small gift shop and refreshments. It has spectacular views of the harbour, and till developers ruin it, a lovely quiet place.

Sign Needed

This is outside Bristol’s council house, a garden full of decorative vegetables. All fine & eco blah blah, but what’s the point of letting it all go to waste when there are people in need of fresh food? Where’s the sign that days ‘eat me’

Old Signs

British shops used to have ornate signs hanging out front advertising their wares. On some inns they were huge, hanging across the road, but from The 1760s they were outlawed as they sometimes fell on people. Here are two from Bedminster, Bristol. A former fish shop. Now they seem to sell everything but This used … Continue reading