Category Archives: Art

Torcello

Assuming anyone can be bothered to make the trip, I think I’d like my ashes scattered at the Secret Cat Place on Torcello. Though alas, even Torcello is going a bit downhill, since today, for the first time ever, there … Continue reading

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Father of the More Famous

I’m currently reading a book about Sir Joseph Banks as an Enlightenment figure (yes, I probably should get out more), and was struck by this quotation: ‘Mann [the Abbé Mann (1735–1809), a Yorkshire Catholic convert and savant who became a … Continue reading

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Cats in Art

If you were to be foolish enough to Google ‘Cats in art’ (and I really don’t recommend it) you would get ‘about 37,600,000 results’ – probably more by the time you read this: and a great many would look something … Continue reading

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Joseph Was An Old Man

… and a very old man was he, according to the Cherry-Tree Carol, at any rate. William Henry Husk points out, in his note on the carol in Songs of the Nativity, that the description of Joseph as old has … Continue reading

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A Curious Herbal

In Modena recently, we were having a nice mooch round the Biblioteca Estense in the Palazzo dei Musei, which also houses the Galleria Estense, the Lapidario Romano, the Musei Civici di Modena, and several other collections. (A tasting session for … Continue reading

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Object of the Month: June 2017

It may be stretching a point to call a small fragment of a painting an ‘object’ – the more so as the small fragment depicts two apparently living animals who may or may not have actually been alive when they … Continue reading

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Plant of the Month: June 2017

There is no doubt that, for a very long period, the pineapple was THE evidence, across Europe, of your wealth, your taste, and your ability to choose a head gardener for your estates who could manage a stove-house. This exotic … Continue reading

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