Monthly Archives: December 2014

the year changes – and so do the stories; but disasters, celebrations and the weather remain

The world moves on from one year to the next. As always there are good times and bad – celebrations and disasters. What does the future hold? We’ll find out in the next 360+ days


mince pies; thomasing; christmas pop charts; stargazy pie; a thoughtful mp; WW1 news; st stephen’s day; disaster at sea

Introduction to a Christmas Special. Have you suddenly realised you have no Mince Pies for Christmas? How about making some yourself? Gervase Markham’s ‘The English Housewife’ [London: 1615] may help you cope with Yule Tide Mince Pies. His recipe says [spelling by Gervase, modified punctuation by me]:- ‘Take a Legge of Mutton, and cut the […]

Thursday 16th December 1773 – The Boston Tea-Party

Thursday 16th December 1773 was the day colonial America showed they were really getting fed-up with Britain. At the beginning of this month three ships of the East India Company – the Dartmouth, the Eleanor and the Beaver, all carrying tea for which the company had sole rights of supply, had arrived in Boston harbour. […]

Royalty; Cricket; chickens and the like; a Bowler Hat; Hot coffee please; Educating at school and a young William Pitt and finish with a sinking ship and a weather report

14th December has a strange place in the comparatively recent life of our British Royal Family and Britain itself. The Victorian era had two very distinctive ‘lives’ – the one during Prince Albert’s life and the one after his death on this Saturday 14th December 1861. Inside the family there was a withdrawal into sadness […]

Opera at London’s Covent Garden & the Clifton suspension bridge; an argument at supper time + sleep + snow; Penyprikke, edward lear & some faint clicks – and francis drake sets sail

Sunday 7th December 1732 saw the Royal Opera House open at the Theatre Royal, Covent Garden in London with a performance of William Congreve’s ‘The Way of the World’. Four years previous John Rich, the actor-manager of the Duke’s Company at Lincoln’s Inn Fields Theatre, had commissioned ‘The Beggar’s Opera’ from John Gay. That had […]