History Repeats

(1) The Pilgrimage of Grace (Historic UK)

“The policies of Henry VIII did much to change the country and shape its future; those who resisted with the Pilgrimage of Grace have since fallen into the shadows of history.”

Have they really fallen into the shadows or are they more like the flickering flames of a candle? Many of the martyrs who resisted are memorialized in the Chapel of St George and the English Martyrs at Westminster Cathedral and on Tyburn. But you could argue that England has lived in the shadows ever since the Dissolution, and certainly the version that exists today is a very dark place indeed.

If England has a pulse, it’s ALIVE in places like Walsingham, Canterbury (St. Thomas Becket), and in parishes all over England where the Eucharist is celebrated at Mass. Countless Anglican churches have been turned into coffee shops, galleries, and community centers, and in some local communities only open as museums when they can find volunteers from the parish community to open the doors.

(2) A related quote from Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn:

“Over a half century ago, while I was still a child, I recall hearing a number of old people offer the following explanation for the great disasters that had befallen Russia: “Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.” Since then I have spent well-nigh 50 years working on the history of our revolution; in the process I have read hundreds of books, collected hundreds of personal testimonies, and have already contributed eight volumes of my own toward the effort of clearing away the rubble left by that upheaval. But if I were asked today to formulate as concisely as possible the main cause of the ruinous revolution that swallowed up some 60 million of our people, I could not put it more accurately than to repeat: “Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.”

Weekend 589.0 (Rommer Treece)

“At some point in his studies the student of military history begins to perceive great events as climaxes to a series of ironies.” — W.J. Wood

What’s cooking? I’m smack dab in the middle of a 4 1/2-day break and the coffee drip is working overtime. I’ve been back in the US for more than a year and mostly repatriated (mostly). This was a fairly grueling travel year workwise so my lethargy on these down days is a bit depressing.

I bought an odd “book” from the Bermuda Book Store whilst I was on Somers Isles called Bermuda Picture Album. It was pricey, hand cranked, and assembled in a plastic binder. It’s mostly postcards, photographs, and advertisements before 1915 from private collections. One of the collections is from the Zuill family and they are as close to Bermuda royalty as you can get. It was compiled by Frank Kusk, and it looks like, very sadly, he passed away in 2020. He seemed like an interesting chap.

Do you have any passion projects you want to complete before your earthly pilgrimage is over?

Weekend 565.0 – Limestone Roof (Karl Struss)

(1) The Royal Book – instructions for looking like you should be on the throne (The History Jar)

(2) Dire Straits – Ride Across The River (YouTube)

Oh nothing gonna stop them as the day follows the night
Right become a wrong, the left become the right
And they sing as they march with their flags unfurled
Today in the mountains, tomorrow the world

(3) Cemetary Junction Trailer (YouTube)

Anime: Japan in WWII

I had a little downtime this weekend and watched In This Corner of the World (2016) on ROKU. It’s a beautiful film and a reminder that the victims of war are never the ones rattling the saber. It’s also good to watch films that portray war from the eyes of those you’re fighting (fought). There are two other great films that deal with similar subject matter. The first is The Wind Rises (2013) by Studio Ghibli / Hayao Miyazaki. The Wind Rises is a fictionalized biographical film of Jiro Horikoshi (1903–1982), designer of the Mitsubishi A5M fighter aircraft and its successor, the Mitsubishi A6M Zero¹. The second is Grave of the Fireflies (1988) and it’s the tragic story of two Japanese children orphaned during the war. It’s a difficult film to watch and does a good job chronicling the dangers children face (particularly) at the end of war. All three hopefully inspire you to always encourage those rattling the sabers to exhaust every measure possible to find peaceful resolutions.


The Remains of the Day (1993)

Weekend 572.0 (Civil War)

O, how wretched
Is that poor man that hangs on princes’ favours!
There is, betwixt that smile we would aspire to,
That sweet aspect of princes, and their ruin,
More pangs and fears than war or women have;
And when he falls, he falls like Lucifer,
Never to hope again.

—William Shakespeare
(From King Henry the Eighth)

(1) York vs Lancaster: The Gruesome Truth Behind The Wars Of The Roses (YouTube)

(2) YORK’S ‘TRAITOR’S GATE’: The story of Micklegate Bar (The Press)

Immortalized in Stained-Glass

A quote from Bermuda’s Story by Terry Tucker:

“On the north side of the nave in the Bermuda Cathedral in Hamilton you will see a stained-glass window picturing the storm on the sea of Galilee and the small boat struggling through mountainous waves. At the foot are the words: ‘In Memory of the First Settlers in these Islands and of their Historian, Sir John Henry Lefroy, K.C.M.G., sometime Governor of this Colony.’ This seems a meagre public reminder of a governor who did more for Bermuda than would seem possible for one man in the short span of a six-year tour of duty. To you who want to know the story of your home-land, no name can mean more than that of Lefroy who was Governor and Commander-in-Chief from 1871 to 1877.”

Significant Dates / Holidays – Part 1

March 29Battle of Towton
April 23Coronation of James II
April 26Shakespeare Baptized
May 10Death of Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson
June 15Magna Carta Signed
July 03Pickett’s Charge
July 28Somers Day
September 13Defeat of the Floating Batteries at Gibraltar
September 19Battle of Saratoga
October 7Battle of Lepanto
October 12Columbus Day
October 13Feast Day of Edward the Confessor
December 15Bill of Rights Day
December 22The Dominican Order Founded
December 29Feast Day of St. Thomas Becket

Easter Weekend 2023

“The place of God’s power is an empty space, and in his story of absence and longing, we learn that most of life is lived on this threshold between emptiness and meeting, between fear and hope, between darkness and noon, between Golgotha and Galilee. We learn that it is not knowledge that counts, but faith.”

(1) The Brilliant Darkness of a Friday Afternoon (Imaginative Conservative)

(1a) Blessed Easter! (Sisters of Carmel)

“We pray it may soothe the sorrows that burden your lives and rekindle in your hearts the hope of His glorious victory, a defeat only in appearance. Suffering and death belong to this transitory world. On this day, Our Lord transformed them into the gateway to life everlasting.”

(2) Jane Austen and the Tudor Terror (Imaginative Conservative)

(2a) Where is Mary Queen of Scots buried? (History Scotland)

(2b) Jane Austen in Southampton (Jane Austen’s World)

2022: Year-in-review

A couple of paragraphs to close out 2022. This is the year I said goodbye to London and put an exclamation point on Kingdom Hearts. I spent a night in Gettysburg and a couple more in Paris. I crossed the English Channel via the Eurostar. I read the Brothers York and Faith of Our Fathers. I saw the Wilton Diptych at the British Museum and watched the Southampton Saints WIN under the lights against the Norwich Canaries. I tracked down stained-glass in Hereford from a Christmas card given to my mom and dad by our parish priest. I hiked to Towton, outside York, to visit a battlefield that was pivotal in the War of the Roses. I toured all of the northern cathedrals- York, Durham, and Lincoln. I also travelled to the very edge of Empire for a weekend in Penzance and Lands End. There were a couple of more Saints matches, including a memorable one in Cambridge for the Carabao Cup. There were three Championship League matches in Stoke, Norwich, and Sunderland. I hosted my brother in the spring and we went to Southampton, London, and Ramsgate. I also caught Football: Designing the Beautiful Game at the Design Museum before it closed.

My last couple of weekend trips in England were to Coventry, Exeter, and Bath. One of the highlights of the year was mass at the Cathedral Church St John the Baptist in Norwich.

My BIG birthday was at PNC Arena to see my beloved NY Islanders put a hurt on the Hartford Whalers Carolina Hurricanes and I was at the Bridgeport Islanders home opener. I also went to a Bridgeport Islanders game to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the NY Islanders.

Thames River Ride (1986) by Harper Goff. Scan is from The Art of Walt Disney World Resort