From my diary

Next Tuesday in Oxford there will be a study day, dedicated to the Codex Zacynthius of the bible.  Details may be found at the University of Birmingham website here.

Codex Zacynthius, the oldest copy of the New Testament to be accompanied by a commentary, was rubbed out and written over in the Byzantine period. Using new imaging techniques, it has been possible to restore much of the original content (part of Luke’s Gospel along with many excerpts from early Christian writers) in order to produce a complete electronic transcription which will be accompanied by studies of the manuscript.

In this seminar, kindly sponsored by the Centre for the Study of the Bible in the Humanities at Oxford and the AHRC, members of the project will report on the findings of the project so far and consult with a range of potential users regarding the features of the planned digital edition and the interpretation of the manuscript, along with its significance for biblical and early Christian studies.

You need to book in advance, but I expect that there are still places.  I had intended to go myself, in fact.  Unfortunately I have been unwell for the last six weeks with a minor but debilitating sinus problem of some kind.  I am slowly recovering naturally.  Better still, my current client is being very understanding.  But an eight-hour drive plus a day of lectures will be beyond me for a few weeks yet.

My thanks to all those who prayed about the storm of family-related problems that arrived on top of everything else about three weeks ago.  Everything is now going well, and I can only praise God.  Thank you.

At the moment I’m doing some more work on my Latin program.  I want to be able to add information for particular words, or phrases, so that it displays extra help about possible syntax when I find them.  This involves quite a bit of under-the-hood tinkering, in order to make this possible.

I will get back to blogging when I can.  At the moment I don’t feel any urge whatever!  My apologies.

I have been looking into the origins of halloween.  Interestingly it is only now being introduced to Australia, or so I gather from reading Twitter.


5 thoughts on “From my diary

  1. Well, then, I advise against you ever visiting high altitude, high pressure towns in Peru, or us here in Dayton, Ohio (currently rated the worst sinus pressure town in the US, with Knoxville TN the second worst).

    I have tried all sorts of junk, normal and home remedy, for my chronic sinus; but the only thing that has worked is Bi Yan Pian (made of all sorts of nose-draining herbs that really work, but a tad expensive and you go through a bottle a month, bleh). And if it is a sinus infection, you can’t take that one.

    Working in a kitchen all day also helps. Maybe you need to do a lot of dishes! Or take a shower, then clean your shower while standing in it!

    There’s also the old “menthol rub dotted right under your nose”, or similar.

  2. The big problem with sinuses is that they are inaccessible for cleaning.

    I have been thinking about the Halloween thing, and the big holiday obstacle was that the eves of big feasts were Catholic fasting days until recently. Kids under 7 were not bound to abstain or fast, but usually they would be eating what the family did. Ireland was still following the “no dairy or eggs or meat” fasting rules, until the late 1800’s or so.

    I don’t know about Scottish Catholics, but Robert Burns’ poem seems to be set in a Protestant area, IIRC. There’s an early 19th c book set in Wales that talks about Halloween, but that is also in a Protestant area, I think. Will check.

    Of course, US Halloween scoops up a lot of other holiday harvest celebrations (like All Souls and St. Martin), and maybe there is some counter-programming to Guy Fawkes. (Which scooped up stuff like St. Catherine’s fireworks, and rolling wheels and barrels on fire – particularly in cloth towns that had owed patronage to Catherine of Aragon.)

  3. The Middle English dictionary online does not have any exciting quotes about “al halwe” eve, although there are tons of different spellings under the “al halwe(n) entry! (The actual feast comes into Arthur stories, just like Christmas and Pentecost.)

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