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Eleanor Holdsworth
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Speak like an Anglo-Saxon: Bees!
This is mostly thanks to wikipedia .... I know it's completely the wrong time of year for this, but as I was looking for something for World Soil Day, I came across this lovely charm for bees. Never mind planting bee-friendly flowers, pollinator strips, wil...

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What's in the attic?
A minor disagreement over whether the thing through the hatch at the top of the stairs and under the roof was a loft or an attic got me wondering where the words came from. Loft entered our language with the vikings. The word comes from the Old Norse Lopt (...

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The spacefarer part 1
This is a work in progress, and a request from my Dad. As such, there will be some grammatically erroneous words, but bear with me. Ic þe so ðan spell secgan, hu ic neorxnewange nearl æce ð Tungolfara, freondes feawlic Middangearde feore, Morgensteorra near...

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The Old English for 'beard'
This is a really easy one: Beard  [bay-arrd] Say it with a lilt, like you're from North of the Humber; slowly, like you're enjoying having a beard; and pensively, like your beard gives you new cognitive powers. Roll your rrs. The Anglo-Saxons gave us a wond...

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Innovation in Italy: Small farms, Big Data
I attended Fieragricola thanks to the European Network of Agricultural Journalists “The watchword for agriculture’s future is innovation,” said Raffaele Maiorana, youth president of Confagricoltura, at Fieragricola, the 112th Agricultural Techonologies Show...

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Nature's metaphors (or the monkey's devil fingers)
The monkey has the fingers of the devil When I started learning a little Tajik in preparation for a volunteering trip a few years ago, my bizarre phrase book contained this gem in the section under 'animals'. I'm starting on a bit of a tangent, but it's rel...

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Happy Christmas and a sermon for 25 December
Gesælige Cristesmæsse  [Yu-sail-ig-uh Krist-es-mess-uh] Merry Christmas!  The British Library has a lovely article on Ælfric and his Christmas homilies. Check out the first semon in Cotton MS Julius e vii ... in Ælfric's own words: Ure hælend Crist... acenn...

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Happy poetry day
Leaves burning Trees Hot embers in the forest - A sacrifice to the summer, perhaps, But quickly put out by October's rains. Now the glow of iron stones in a river.

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An excerpt on ecological conversion
From the Holy Father’s letter of 6 August 2015 to Cardinals Koch and Turkson : As Christians we wish to contribute to resolving the ecological cris
is which
humanity is presently experiencing. In doing so, we must first red...

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Wealth
...continuing to quote from Barry Lopez's Arctic Dreams , In the following narratives [of Arctic exploration], it is not solely the desire of some men for difrerent sorts of wealth that becomes clear, but the suspicion that North America offered more than m...
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