My thanks to Jen Black who kindly nominated me as one of her recipients for the Kreativ Blogger Award. To play, one is supposed to:
- List 7 of your favourite things
- List 7 of your favourite activities
- List 7 things no-one knows about you
- Pass the award on to 7 others
- Early medieval Britain
- The Venerable Bede, without whom we would know even less about early medieval Britain than we do
- The commenters on this blog, including the ones who comment by email
- Full-text primary sources made available online, including but not limited to: Internet Medieval Sourcebook, Mary Jones’s Celtic Literature Collective, Keith Matthews’s history pages, Bill Thayer’s Lacus Curtius, Online Medieval and Classical Library, CELT: Corpus of Electronic Texts. Thanks to the wonderful people who maintain these sites and others like them, these invaluable historical documents are available for anyone to read and study. A big thank-you to everyone concerned.
- Bright spring and autumn days
- Writing (as someone famously said, writing is the most fun you can have on your own)
- Cycling on quiet country lanes
Seven things no-one knows about me. I am going to adapt this, as I have with similar lists in the past, and list seven things about someone much more interesting than me. In this case, seven things you probably didn’t know about Bede:
- He was born on the lands of the monastery at Wearmouth-Jarrow, went into the monastery for his education at the age of seven, and lived there all his life;
- He died on Ascension Day 735, aged about 62. (Age deduced from his autobiographical note at the end of his Ecclesiastical History, written in 731, where he refers to “…my fifty-ninth year….”, implying he was 58 at the time of writing);
- His scribe was called Wilbur;
- He liked pepper;
- His relics were wrapped in “a robe of fine silk” given to Abbott Cuthbert of Wearmouth Jarrow by the Archbishop of Mainz;
- He applied logic and observation to deduce that the prevailing explanation for the rise and fall of the tides was wrong (It was thought that the tide rose when extra water was added to the oceans from some unknown source, and fell when water drained out of the oceans. Bede reasoned that if this were the case high tide should occur at the same time in all locations. As he knew that high tide actually occurs at different times in the different harbours along the Northumbrian coast, he deduced that tidal rise and fall was something to do with the water in the oceans moving from one place to another, not to alterations in the total volume. He even figured out that tides were associated with the Moon. So much for the “Dark Ages” being an age of ignorance and superstition);
- He is the only Englishman ever to be recognised as a Doctor of the Church.
Seven recipients of the Kreativ Blogger Award:
Over to you!