SACRILEGE

Vandals have cut down ONE of the Glastonbury thorn bushes. The one on the hill marking the spot where Joseph of Arimathea planted his staff on one of his trips to England. Of course, this is sacrilege of the highest order but it is not the end of the world. There are plenty of other thorn bushes descended from the first.

Once there was only one bush but the Puritans cut it down. Fortunately a group of true Christians took some cuttings before the bush died and these were propagated in secret and replanted when the true king of England was restored to his throne. From what I remember there are, at least, three growing in the Abbey grounds and, no doubt, quite a few in nurseries somewhere, ready for such an occasion as this. The vandalised thorn bush will, I'm sure, be replanted.

The grounds in which the tree stood are owned by Edward James, CEO of a now bankrupt currency exchange firm, who was arrested last week. Speculation that the destruction of the tree was a revenge attack is rife in the town. Other likely suspects would be fundamentalist, neo-puritans, militant atheists or Rowan Williams, of course.

Comments

SACRILEGE — 128 Comments

  1. Did the Puritans really cut it down? Horrors. I didn’t know that.

    I wish I knew what their problem is. The puritan-types, I mean.

    And sacrilege is right. (And I’m NOT being facetious.)

  2. There’s no circle of hell low, hot (and/or, per Dante, icy) enough, for those who would cut down a tree, per ideology. SCUMBAGS! >:-0

  3. It’s a tree. It has a pretty legend attached to it. What a shame. What sort of twisted people do this? THey need help.

  4. Just as Rowan is busy, I suspect atheists ‘militant’ or otherwise have no reason to cut down the tree.

    The Puritans were fairly effective at chopping down what they perceived as idolatry whether trees, church organs, stained glass or statues.

  5. Now you’ve done it, MP, now I have an image in my mind of Rowan Williams, beard tossing in the wind, clad in his purple cassock, sawing down the famous thorn tree—by moonlight, of course! How is a person supposed to get to sleep with that going on inside of the head???? Geez! :>)
    Nij

  6. This sad story brought back a shocking memory. My daughter and I visited Glastonbury on Good Friday, 1994, and stopped at a church on the high street (St. John’s?), which has another of the thorn trees descended from the original, in order to attend the three-hour service. To our astonishment, a wild-eyed young man came out of the church just as we were approaching the door and attacked the tree! He seemed really angry but he didn’t do major damage before running off. It was a riveting experience and I’ve wondered ever since what was on the poor man’s mind.

  7. This is where I kinda like being a blended-tradition sort. Pagans and Christians alike shower love and veneration upon that thorn, and it strikes the hearts of people of both paths to even contemplate someone damaging or destroying it.

    TLH

  8. “Are the trees of the field people, that you would besiege them?”

    Deuteronomy, somewhere. Don’t cut the fruit trees is my favourite Old Testament law.

  9. This particular tree was planted from cuttings in 1952, according to the Guardian. The “Holy Thorn” in the grounds of Glastonbury Abbey similarly was chopped down and regrown from cuttings in 1991, after it died. Mad Priest is right, there are cuttings and specimens all over the world. It won’t be that hard to replace.

  10. Mirror mirror on the wall
    Am I the fairest tree of all?

    There is a tree down yonder way
    Who is more fair than you by day
    By night it’s pretty damn hot too
    I’d chop it down if I were you

    I chopped the tree of which you speak
    At Glastonbury, up from the creek

    The one owned by the spiv who’s broke?
    That tree’s a bush it ain’t no Oak.

    And as I felt no longer proud
    I wandered lonely as a cloud…

  11. Weave a circle round Boaz thrice,
    And close your eyes with holy dread,
    For he on honey-dew* hath fed,
    And drunk the milk of Paradise**.

    (* ie Vegemite.
    ** he’s been at the Foster’s again.)

    wv – sensh – Boaz is making perfect sensh

  12. I myself imagined a photo shop of Richard Dawkins and Faye Dunaway as Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest, in the garden…”Tina! Bring me the ax!”

  13. “I don’t care why they cut it down”

    The thing that got me, in the crime scene photo, was the cut-down branches strewn about.

    Yes, “the poor are always with us”: one can imagine somebody (however misguided) wanting firewood against December cold.

    But that obviously wasn’t what motivated these yutzes. >:-/

  14. Not Fosters, Cathy. Yalumba riesling, 2 litre cask $14.99
    It’s their “premium selection”. (Never let it be said that I’m cheap).

    As its Sunday morning here, we’re off to the Sunday School nativity play followed by their annual picnic.

  15. OK then:

    Weave a circle round Boaz thrice,
    And close your eyes with holy dread,
    For he on Vegemite hath fed,
    And drunk the premium Yalumba casked riesling of Paradise.

    There you go Boaz – your reputation has been restored, at least as far as your taste in booze goes 🙂

  16. Anonymous, to be fair, we really don’t know what motivated the Axe-Wielding Tree Murderers of Glastonbury, or even who they were, as yet.

  17. As the bush is an icon, I think Anon. is correct to use the term. As it was half way up a hill on its own it’s not going to be a casual, opportunistic murder.

  18. The bush may be an icon, but is that why it was attacked? … It’s probable, but not certain. After all the chap who owns the field had had some kind of financial disaster this week and the attack may be related to that. Just sayin’.

  19. Oh, shit. My blog has become a meeting place for white wine drinkers.

    Something wrong with that? … I like a good riesling meself. I think you should add, “white wine drinkers of German vine stock but Australian provenance” 🙂

  20. I know. I said that in the post. But if the bush wasn’t an icon then killing it would hardly have upset him or lessened the value of his property, would it?

  21. For all we know this chappie may have attacked it himself, in a fit of frustration over his troubles.

    Attacking something because you believe that it is an idol and its existence is morally wrong and attacking it because you believe that it will upset someone who values it are not both iconoclasm.

    Australian provenance is mighty fine, in my estimation 🙂

  22. Maybe the tree shed its own branches as a gesture of protest against the proposed Anglican covenant. All for nought, because no one has spotted that aspect of it.

  23. Iconoclasm” “The belief in, participation in, or sanction of destroying religious icons and other symbols or monuments, usually with religious or political motives.”

  24. No. It’s an English tree. Such passive aggressiveness is not our style. If the tree had wanted to protest against something it would have smashed up a passing royal’s car or similar.

  25. I know wot iconoclasm is. Malice is not a political motive. It is quite possible for a person to destroy something of great significance to someone else with no comprehension of the reason why it is significant.

    Speaking of which, the tree might have wished to smash up a passing royal’s car, but lacked one to smash up, thus cast off its own branches in lieu. If only persons such as yourself appreciated the great distress over the proposed covenant that may have led the tree to this sacrifice. Alas it appears it was all in vain.

  26. LOL. My life would be much the duller without your noble self and other Anglican bloggers about to argue with, that much is true.

  27. Some think that it was attacked by someone who was wronged by the guy whose land it is.

    Yes, there are other thorn trees, but this one was special because it was a meeting place for pagans who would celebrate their major festivals around it. There are always prayer ribbons attached to itm amazingly dressed people peacefully celebrate summer and winter solistice there, the Godesses use it… it just IS part of what Glastonbury represents.

    Glastonbury is absolutely amazing, all kinds of faiths live side by side in genuine tolerance and it is really shocking to see this tree cut down.

    The tree may yet win – there’s just a chance that small shoots will grow again from the stump but we won’t know until the spring.

  28. Glastonbury is full of very silly people who don’t know their history and who haven’t got the foggiest idea what paganism or Christianity is about. They are mostly rich layabouts who would have a very different view of the earth if they had ever had to actually work on it.

  29. I have to say, if it does turn out to be some person who has decided to rid their surroundings of all its pagan symbols, you would have to ask why on earth if they didn’t like that sort of thing they lived in Glastonbury. Just move to some concrete jungle like Milton Keynes. That would be simpler.

  30. The thorn is not a pagan symbol. It is a Christian symbol albeit one that relates to the paganism within English Christianity. As I said, Glastonbury’s phoney pagans are very silly and delusional.

  31. It would be entirely reasonable to see it as a pagan symbol that has a Christian story attached to it, in my view. BUT LET’S NOT ARGUE.

  32. No it wouldn’t, Cathy. There is absolutely no evidence that the story came from anywhere else other than the Christian tradition. We are not talking about Christmas trees here.

  33. The Christian tradition in England always has been riddled with symbolism and practices drawn from persisting rural pagan beliefs. This is what the Puritans were worried about. The whole concept of a “holy tree”, like a holy spring or a holy stone, is pagan in origin. I oughta know, I have studied this. The fact that the earliest record we know about had already ascribed a Christian origin to the “holy tree” does not disguise its pagan origin. This is why the Puritans cut it down.

  34. Modern paganism is basically ex-Methodist women chanting “Blessed Be!” to the goddess of cellulite.
    Always too self-conscious and too self-congratulatory to be a real religious tradition, at least at the middle/upper middle class levels it seems to prefer.
    Basically Unitarianism in Gandalf robes.

  35. It is like the Mabinogion or the legend of King Arthur, or quite a number of the Irish or Scottish myths and legends. By the time they were recorded in writing they already had a Christian overlay, but the origins of the stories are quite obviously pre-Christian. Nothing is more pagan a symbol than the Holy Grail. The pagan gods quite often lived on in the Christian tradition, only they were downgraded into kings (Lear) or saints (Brigid). And no one is telling me that Lourdes is a Christian site in origin either, though that is something I actually haven’t looked into.

    Meanwhile, I do agree with you that Glastonbury is full of silly people.

  36. No. The Glastonbury thorn is a Christian tradition informed by a part pagan sensibility. I repeat – there is absolutely no evidence that there was a pre-existing pagan tree.

  37. Spot on, anon. There is more real paganism in the ceremonies of the Church of England than there is in neo-pagan rituals. The eucharist is basically a pagan blood sacrifice mixed with the pagan concept of the dying and rising god. Christianity is a pagan religion.

  38. There’s an old monastic story about two monks having an argument. The abbot is then fetched to settle the matter.

    The first monk states his case and the abbot says, “Why, I believe you are right!”

    The second monk refutes this and the abbot exclaims, “And I believe you are right!”

    “Wait a minute,” a third monk responds. “They can’t both be right.”

    And to him the abbot says once more, “And I believe you are right, too.”

  39. Cathy is right but she isn’t on-thread. Of course, some pagan traditions were taken over by Christianity. But that doesn’t mean all specific Christian traditions were originally pagan.

    Anyway, I don’t believe they were taken over as I believe Christianity is an evolution not a new religion. And it is an evolution in paganism not an evolution in Judaism. Christianity is a polytheistic, mystery religion and is separate from Judaic monotheism in the same way Sufism is separate from Islam. Both Christianity and Sufism grew out of pagan religions that pre-date monotheism.

  40. Mad Priest, I am certainly not projecting! I don’t even see how you mean that in this context.

    I agree with your last comment (startlingly) which is fascinating and which (as I see it) ties in with what I said about the pagan origins of the tree.

    I also agree that not all Christian traditions were originally pagan. Now, I can’t say fairer than that.

    Ellie, I hope we’re not boring you.

  41. there is absolutely no evidence that there was a pre-existing pagan tree

    If you’re looking for written evidence, for the reasons that I have described, you would not find any. By the time there were written records all of these ancient legends had been given a Christian gloss. You can tell it’s pagan because of what it is.

  42. I totally agree with anon and what you said to her/him too.

    Actually, with your last comment, if you don’t like “taken over” (though I think that’s fair because the Celts were invaded by more than one set of aggressors), “assimilated” might be a better word. That pagan Celtic traditions were deliberately Christianised is not much in doubt.

  43. You are projecting what happened in some cases onto a case where there is no proof that it happened. That is unacademic. But, having said that, I think you have built a windmill to tilt at that has nothing to do with what me or anybody else has said. This is not the first time.

  44. If you’re looking for written evidence, for the reasons that I have described, you would not find any. You can tell it’s pagan because of what it is.

    Bollocks.

  45. That pagan Celtic traditions were deliberately Christianised is not much in doubt.

    Romantic tosh. And patronising tosh at that. For a start, the Celts chose Christianity. There was little aggression involved until the Roman catholic invasion. You seem to believe the celts were a bunch of pansies that could be tricked into believing anything. And you also seem to have erased the 400 odd years in Britain between Celtic paganism and Christianity. Christianity followed on from Germanic paganism and the residue Roman Paganism.

  46. Mad Priest, I don’t know what “proof” you want. The pagan Celts were not literate. Neither were the vast number of rural peoples in England who kept the pagan tradition alive over the centuries. It’s as I said before – the earliest written accounts of most pre-Christian British legends put a Christian gloss on them because the country was nominally Christian by the time those accounts came to be written. But the pagan traditions show through, and are obvious. The case of this tree is consistent with that. There is no tradition of “holy trees” in Christianity. There is in Celtic paganism. That’s the evidence. The argument for it being a pagan symbol is far stronger than any argument that it came from a Christian tradition. Where’s the proof for that?

    This is not “projecting”. You’re trying to suggest I am being intellectually dishonest. I am not. It’s consistent with a good many other examples of Christianised paganism that I could point to (and I have given several examples).

    I’m only arguing this case because you dismissed my statement that it was a pagan symbol! That is not “tilting at windmills”.

  47. For a start, the Celts chose Christianity.

    Where’s the evidence for that, on the mainland at least? … Christianity arrived in a big way in England when the Anglo-Saxons were converted. The Anglo-Saxons indisputably had previously invaded violently and forced the Celts into submission. I certainly don’t think the Celts were easily subdued, but subdued first by the Romans and then the Anglo-Saxons they indisputably were.

    It’s not romantic tosh – in fact there’s not much argument that that’s what happened.

    I agree there is a mixed heritage of paganisms to be dealt with.

    I don’t know what you mean by the Roman Catholic invasion.

  48. Your suggestion regarding the bush is possible but, as you yourself admit, it is unprovable. Therefore, it is academically dishonest to claim it as a fact but not academically dishonest to suggest that it might have been. However, it is perfectly reasonable to assume a Christian provenance because all the records we do have point to it being so. That there is a link between the thorn and pagan trees is most likely because early British Christianity was a merging of paganism and eastern Christianities. But that does not mean that this particular bush was around before this merger took place.

    On the other hand we have records that show that Christmas, for example, is a Christianising of an existing pagan festival. So it is academically honest to claim that was the case. I’m not arguing with you about pagan influences on Christianity. I am just saying that you are claiming something in this particular instance that is just your speculation and wishful thinking.

  49. Ah, gotcha! You talk like the arrogant Londoner that you have become. Half of England, at one time, and before the Roman Catholic invasion, was converted by the Celtic missionaries who came from Irish Christianity that was the result of missionary activity and not aggressive proselytising. When you take the whole of the British Isles (including Ireland) the majority of the population had converted to Christianity without military invasion before the Roman Catholic invasion.

  50. In fact that is the exact point I was about to make. The Irish converted peaceably, and therefore you can say that in Ireland the Celts chose Christianity. Not on the mainland.

    But when you say “half of England was converted”, you mean after the Anglo-Saxon invasion. The Celts on the mainland had already been subdued by then, BY MILITARY INVASION. It is therefore meaningless to talk about their “choice” when it comes to Christianity. The continued survival of the pagan traditions suggests it wasn’t their choice particularly.

    Mad Priest, talking about “the Roman Catholic invasion” is meaningless. Do you mean the Normans? …

    PS Is arrogant Londoner in your book a promotion or demotion from crass Australian? Just askin’.

  51. PPS my suggestion about the bush is not provable, but neither, GIVEN WHAT I HAVE ARGUED ALREADY, is your case for it being a Christian symbol. There are no instances anywhere, for instance, in the OT or the NT, or in the Judeo-Christian tradition as a whole, of anyone considering trees holy. It’s only where the European pagan tradition exists that you get Christianised holy stones, rivers, springs and plants. That tells you where the origin of those symbols lies.

  52. May I rephrase my comment for purposes of consistency?

    Carry on now, Doña Quixote and Padre Pero Pérez.

    Ah, that’s much better. The alliteration plays very nicely.

  53. Roman paganism in the North of England was replaced by Germanic paganism after the Saxon invasions. The kingdom of Northumbria (a huge area of Britain that stretched from what is now southern Scotland to the Humber), converted peacefully to Christianity because of Celtic missionary activity. When you add Cornwall to Wales, Ireland, most of Scotland and most of the north of England you end up with a predominantly Christian British Isles, all converted peacefully. The only aggressive act was that of Rome when they established the first ordinariate in the court of a already Christian queen in the mid seventh century – over 600 years after Joseph brought the faith to our shores.

  54. I’m not contradicting your assertions about origins (as you would see for yourself if you read my comments). I am stating that the Glastonbury thorn was first planted by Christians and not pagans unless proved otherwise.

  55. But it doesn’t matter who it was “planted” by, which in any case is impossible to establish. The fact is that the concept of a holy tree is a pagan concept. Someone decided at some point that this bush had spiritual significance. They were drawing on the pagan tradition when they did that, not the Christian tradition.

    The Celtic missionaries you refer to came from Ireland, not the mainland, and the kingdom of Northumbria was an Anglo-Saxon kingdom, so that ties in with what I have said already. I do not accept that it can be proven that the Celts on the part of the mainland invaded by the Anglo-Saxons peaceably converted to Christianity.

    Either way, it doesn’t matter, since the Christianisation of the pagan tradition that I have been talking about took place either way – even where there was peaceful conversion, Saint Brigid being a good example. You seem to think I have been arguing that this process only happened where there was invasion. I have not argued anything of the sort.

  56. … Oh I get it. Is our argument about who planted this particular tree, rather than the intellectual origins of their ideas? … In that case I can help: it was planted in 1952 by some fucker from 1950s Glastonbury. They probably had neither Christian nor pagan beliefs.

  57. If you’re wondering who planted the original ancestor of the tree, that was some bird pooing a seed in its bird poo back in 213971497190471000 BC.

  58. No. you miss my point completely because you are intent on putting everything neatly into boxes. It is because Christianity is a pagan religion that the tree motif planted itself so easily within it. The cross is the tree and the tree is symbolic of the vegetable era. It is all part of the same ancient story. It was only with the taking over of Christianity in much of the world by Roman Catholic monotheism (monotheism is always controlling) that a wedge was driven in between the dominant christianity of the west and paganism.

    The oldest written records state that the Glastonbury Thorn was planted by Christians. I’m not arguing with you anymore on this as you are trying (successfully) to argue with conjectures, which is a futile thing for a logical person like me to do.

  59. I have only ever been talking about the planting of the original thorn, not the 1952 planting. I am stating that it must be regarded as a Christian event unless there is proof to the contrary. I accept fully that those Christians would have been as connected to what you regard as pagan traditions (but which I do not regard as separate from early Christianity) as to what you regard as Christianity. But the tree is a universal symbol that belongs to every religion except for the monotheistic ones. And Christianity is polytheistic.

  60. No you don’t – I win, because what I say about the pagan tradition and it being a pagan concept is a whole lot more convincing than your claims about some Christian planting it.

  61. PS There is no “original” thorn. In the plant world that concept is meaningless. Unless you’re arguing that it came from Joseph of Arimathea’s staff. In which case, you’re wrong.

  62. PS do you think anyone else in this country actually cares this much about the origins of the tree? … Other than (possibly) the person who chopped it down?

  63. MadPriest, are you suggesting that Joseph actually visited England?

    The tree of the cross is a symbol from the earliest history of Christianity, and the fact that the tree is a thorn tree….

    Of course, I’m way out of my depth in even entering into the discussion with you two awesomely learned people.

  64. Unless you’re arguing that it came from Joseph of Arimathea’s staff. In which case, you’re wrong.

    I believe that a man died and after three days came back to life. It’s no problem for me to believe in a walking stick that turns into a bush.

  65. do you think anyone else in this country actually cares this much about the origins of the tree?

    That is a question only a foreigner would ask.

  66. You keep on pretending your views are representative of the rest of the country’s. I’m sorry but there are vast numbers of people tonight whose main concern was who won The X-Factor and who don’t give a stuff about this issue. I care a whole lot more about this issue than they do.

    The fact that we all believe Jesus died and rose again doesn’t mean we have to believe any other old bollocks we get presented with. Who are you, Richard Dawkins?

  67. Of course, I’m way out of my depth in even entering into the discussion with you two awesomely learned people.

    Don’t you git sarcastic with me, young Mimi 🙂

  68. The fact that we all believe Jesus died and rose again doesn’t mean we have to believe any other old bollocks we get presented with.

    True. But it does mean you can if you want to.

  69. She is actually telling the truth for once.

    Mimi always speaks truth.

    PS I have lived nearly half my adult life in this country now and at this point I am very nearly more English than I am Australian. I would not admit this anywhere but here.

  70. … I don’t think that distinction is fair (particularly since my dad’s parents were English and he had a very English outlook). But that is an argument for another time, maybe 🙂

  71. When your dad’s parents were in England, London was still part of England. Now it is just some alien place that sucks up all our money to finance it’s amusements. Only northerners who like musicals visit it. The rest of us prefer to avoid it. Most of us believe we would only get killed in a drive by shooting or knifing incident if we went there. Although, I think some of our students visited it the other day. Royalty spotting or something like that, I understand.

  72. Mad Priest, I’ve managed to live in London for 11 years now without getting shot or knifed, or knowing anyone else who was shot or knifed. It’s reasonably safe, actually.

    As fer sucking up all the money, I believe a new survey shows most English people believe the Scots are doing that. Whether that is fair or not I do not know.

    The musicals are not good. I agree with you there.

    But I know a few northerners who came here to live. In fact some of them are my mates 🙂

  73. I did do jury duty on a murder trial at the Old Bailey in the case of someone who got shot though. That was quite fun. Though not for the person who got shot, obviously.

  74. It’s more about all the money that is spent on your entertainment – from museums to the olympics. We have to contribute to this (because it’s supposedly our capital city) but of course not many of us have the time or money to get to see the stuff. We find it a little unfair. For example, imagine how much it would cost for a couple from Newcastle to visit the opera in London. It’s not just the tickets but also the train fares and hotel costs. Yet our taxes go towards art subsides as much as yours and most art subsidies go to the big London flag ship stuff.

  75. The question of London arts subsidies is a biggie and perhaps left to another time. In fact opera tickets don’t necessarily cost all that much and you could probably find somewhere cheap (though nasty) to stay, if you came down from Newcastle (which you won’t because you hate opera and you meant some hypothetical couple, not you and Mrs MP). But of course you have a point there. As for the Olympics, I hate the whole idea. I wish the games had gone to Paris.

  76. This is now over 100 comments. That’s good.

    wv – howto. “Mad Priest And Cathy’s Guide To How To Have An Argument”

  77. How does a foreigner get called to jury duty without first becoming a naturalized citizen?

    BTW, MP has his history of the British Isles down pat. I did not detect anything out of order from the way I also learned it. All that in spite of the fact that he does not know jack about the geography of the Americas. Or at least he pretends not to know jack.

  78. There’s only one thing little about me, darling – and you’ve never seen that.

    I know you addressed this remark to Mimi but I would just like to point out that it, too, has a Christian legend attached to it (you) 🙂

  79. BTW, MP has his history of the British Isles down pat.

    Except for the Civil War, the stretch of history going through from the arrival of the Celts until the Norman invasion, and, oh, probably everything else 🙂

    Re jury duty, clearly one only has to be a UK resident to qualify since I am certainly not a citizen as yet.

  80. I know little about Australian history, even less about Mexican history and a damned sight more about British history than you. For a start, I’ve been part of it a lot longer.

  81. I have been studying and reading up about British history, which is a huge interest of mine, for more than 30 years now so, with the best will in the world, I’m not sure you do, Mad Priest. Shall we agree we are both interested in it and know a good deal about it – will your British pride allow you that? …

  82. I see Doña Quixote and Padre Pero Pérez are still going at it.

    There’s only one thing little about me, darling – and you’ve never seen that.

    TMI!!! Whatever happened to English reticence?!

  83. Your problem,and what makes you suspect academically, is that you romanticise those players in history that you consider to be the underdog or most disliked. This is because you like a good fight. As David said, I simply state the facts.

  84. Your problem, and what makes you suspect academically, Mad Priest, is that you allow your Anglo-Catholic biases to influence you far too heavily. I would say everything you’ve said so far about the Civil War has been simplistic in the extreme. As for me, I simply state the facts 🙂

    wv – minds

  85. PS I don’t think I do always go for the underdog at all. If someone said something denigrating about the Cavaliers that I knew to be inaccurate I would defend the Cavaliers.

    Likewise, in the conflict between the Romans and the Celts, for instance, I can see good on both sides.

  86. Yes, MadPriest, I see your English humility on full display here.

    Why didn’t you include in the Joseph legend the part which says that Jesus was with his uncle in England and wrote the King James Bible while he there?

  87. Also, and I can tell you’re a bit fed up but I will say this anyway, it is you who in this instance has accepted a distinctly romanticised version of the story, and I would say you romanticise history generally far more than I do.

  88. I have given David his answer, and I too will say no more 🙂

    Thank you for a long and interesting argument, anyway, Mad One.

  89. You couldn’t have been correcting me because, by your own admission, for most of the thread you were arguing against something that nobody had said. You just looked at a few trigger words and went off on one of your hobby horses.

    You and Mimi have so much in common. No wonder you get on so well together.

  90. Cathy and I surely have in common that we seem to annoy you, MadPriest, when you should instead be grateful. We’ve given you over 100 comments, although Cathy gets the bulk of the credit, because I arrived late to the fracas, er, party.