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Lord Acton’s Lost Work March 23, 2013

Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
Lord Acton's Lost Work

Lord Acton is often reckoned one of the great historians of nineteenth-century England. Yet he published all too little despite tens of thousands of hours of study: a handful of essays and talks… His great book was to be have been a whig classic, a discussion of the growth of modern liberty. But that book […]

England’s First Anomalist and A Missing Manuscript? March 4, 2013

Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
England's First Anomalist and A Missing Manuscript?

Matthew Poole (obit 1679) was an English Biblical scholar from an age and a place when that meant simultaneously the most mind numbing parsing and sensationalizing of God’s word. He wrote tracts, he preached sermons and he would generally have made rather dull if hell-fire warm dinner company: perhaps the only really interesting thing that […]

Fairy Jousting? October 26, 2012

Author: Beach Combing | in : Medieval
Fairy Jousting?

This tale comes from an early thirteenth-century Latin collection of mirabilia. It has not, to the best of Beach’s knowledge been associated with fairies, but reading it eight hundred years after its composition, there seem to be some fey hints worth flagging up. Note that the Latin below comes from an early edition where there […]

Review: Night Climbers of Cambridge January 27, 2011

Author: Beach Combing | in : Contemporary
Review: Night Climbers of Cambridge

[Note: Beachcombing apologises for any emails he’s not answered but the local internet provider has been down again for the last week: and he only has a couple of minutes with term beginning to rush in and put up posts at work. As soon as service returns he’ll be writing.] Another classic from the vaults […]