John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey

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Sad News

The dog who played "Eddie" on Frasier has passed away.

To commemorate, here's yesterday's Forgotten English:

The half-watches of two hours each.
--Adm. William Smyth's Sailor's Word-book, 1867

The watch from four to eight P.M. is divided into two half, or dog-watches, one from four to six, and the other from six to eight. By this means they divide the twenty-four hours into seven watches instead of six, and thus shift the hours every night.
--Richard Henry Dana's Two Years before the Mast, 1840

The expression dog-watch, which at first sight may present a difficulty to the enquirer, is merely a corruption of dodge-watch.
--A. Wallace's Popular Sayings Dissected, 1895

England's First Official Dog Show
was held in Newcastle on this date in 1859. A local manufacturer and purveyor of hunting equipment, one Mr. Pape, sponsored the event, offering items of his merchandise to owners of the winners. The contestants in the limited field of breeds included half a dozen hunting dogs that probably looked and acted like today's pointers and setters. By the end of the 1860s, dog shows on a larger scale had become popular, first in London and then in New York.

...and just because I like it, here's today's!

Divining by the coagulation of cheese.
-John Gaule's Magicall Astrologicall Diviner, 1652

Feast Day of St. Paul
June 29 was once associated with a litany of predictions, such as:
     If St. Paul's Day be fair and clear,
     It does betide a happy year;
     But if it chance to snow or rain,
     Then will be dear all kind of grain.

In Antiquities of the Common People (1725) Henry Bourne pondered this undue emphasis on soothsaying: "How it came to have this particular knack of foretelling the good or ill fortune of the following year is no easy matter to find out. ... St. Paul did indeed labour more abundantly than all the apostles, but never, that I heard, in the field of astrology." Joseph Shipley's Dictionary of Early English (1955) defined another strange-sounding form of prophecy, gyromancy, as "a walking in a circle divided into zones until falling from dizziness, the prophecy dependent upon the zone in which one fell."

Has anybody informed Jack Chick?

-The Gneech
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