Monday, June 18, 2012

Weep not for that man for he has said, "There is no God.''

On this day in 1178, Fratello Gervase, the chronicler of the Abbey of Canterbury wrote down the accounts from five of the abbey's monks who were out that evening and looking at the moon. Gervase chronicled, what is possibly the Giordano Bruno crater being formed.  His entry read:

"This year on the 18th of June, when the Moon, a slim crescent, first became visible, a marvelous phenomenon was seen by several men who were watching it. Suddenly, the upper horn of the crescent was split in two. From the mid point of the division, a flaming torch sprang up, spewing out over a considerable distance fire, hot coals and sparks. The body of the Moon which was below, writhed like a wounded snake. This happened a dozen times or more, and when the Moon returned to normal, the whole crescent took on a blackish appearance."

A large impact crater (measuring 22 km in diameter) Giordano Bruno is a large crater whose outer rim is especially bright, compared to its surroundings. What is very strange is, how it was named, considering the above paragraph.

Giordano Bruno(born 1548) was 15 years old when joined the ministry, but renounced his vows a year later since he believed in the Copernican model and proposed that the Sun was essentially a star, and that the universe contained an infinite number of worlds many that were populated by other intelligent beings.

 In 1592, he was imprisoned in Italy and asked him if he would recant.  When he refused, they ordered his execution.  His reply was  "Perhaps it is with more fear that you deliver my sentence than I receive it." 

He was then brought to the center of town, tied to a stake and on February 17, 1600, he was burned to death.

It has been suggested that Shelley had Bruno in mind when he wrote the following passage....

"'I was an infant when my mother went
To see an atheist burned. She took me there.
The dark-robed priests were met around the pile;
The multitude was gazing silently;
And as the culprit passed with dauntless mien,
Tempered disdain in his unaltering eye,
Mixed with a quiet smile, shone calmly forth;
The thirsty fire crept round his manly limbs;
His resolute eyes were scorched to blindness soon;
His death-pang rent my heart! the insensate mob
Uttered a cry of triumph, and I wept.
'Weep not, child!' cried my mother, 'for that man
Has said, There is no God.''" [Queen Mab, section VII, lines 1-13.]

The Historical Inebriant:  The Monk's Hood          


1/2 oz Amarula Cream
1/2 oz Frangelico
1/2 oz Kahlua

Serve in a chilled tall shot glass. Frangelico in first, then layer Amarula Cream then finally top it with Kahula.


On this day in 1429, the French forces under the leadership of Joan of Arc defeat the English army at the Battle of Patay, turning the tide of the Hundred Years' War.


"The Sorrows of Gin"
On this day in 1982, American author John Cheever dies at age 70 from cancer complications.

An interesting article on Cheever:

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