How the Whale Became 25

How the Whale Became
Companion to How the Elephant almost became a Whale on Sally Cronin’s Smorgasbord   In 1859, Charles Darwin hesitated over publishing On the Origin of Species by Natural Selection. It was not because he was concerned about the church’s reaction. He took care to excise any suggestion man was descended from the ape, even if ...

Rest Ye Merry 20

Rest Ye Merry
I was invited by Robbie Cheadle at https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com to participate in the Anything but Books tag.  Read her thoughts here: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/2017/11/26/anything-but-books-tag/ I want to thank Robbie by dedicating a song to her. No, I am not going to sing. Yes, I heard your collective sigh of relief. ‘Cat Black the Wizard’s Hat’ is one of ...

October 17 Pt 2: Storming the Winter Palace 14

October 17 Pt 2: Storming the Winter Palace
  Read Part 1 October 17 In May 1917 when Trotsky arrived in Petersburg from New York, after spending a month interned by the British, he did not immediately join Lenin’s Bolsheviks. As a Marxist, Trotsky was suspicious of Lenin, who he rightly viewed as an ambitious radical intent on exploiting a popular mass movement ...

October 17 18

October 17
  In the 1720s Peter the Great sought to modernise Russia, but the aristocracy and his successors were traditionalists who believed God appointed them to rule. Due to its vast size, poor infrastructure and virtually subsistence agricultural economy, Russia essentially remained a medieval Byzantine kingdom under an absolutist Tsar and mortgaged nobility. By the early ...

Pure 18

Pure
  Leather manufacture was always a noisome business. Noisome as in smelly, not noisy: that was the slaughterhouse. Although with all those animals terrified by death and all the blood, I think slaughterhouses were pretty smelly too. When I was a kid there was a tannery on the side of the Leeds to Liverpool Canal. ...
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