Entering the World of Franz Kafka

I was entranced while in Prague to visit a museum dedicated to the life and work of Czech writer Franz Kafka (1883-1924). His letters, diaries and photographs are on display, along with 3-D installations. Reviews of the Museum on Trip AdvisorReviews of the Museum on Google.

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Descendant of Divine Hags?

In the Gaelic mythology of ancient Ireland, Wales and Scotland, a cailleach was “a divine hag, a creator deity and weather deity, and an ancestor deity.” More.

My sister, Ann Buie Loomis, has discovered that one of the caelleach’s local names was Bui, and she was associated with the great passage tomb Knowth (Cnoc Bui). A psychologist friend, Betty Lou Chaika, pointed her to these links:

The stones of Knowth are covered with beautiful engraved art. … In Irish mythology Knowth is Cnoc Bui, home to the sovereignty Goddes Bui, consort of Lugh of …
This page is about the mythology of Knowth, and is a paper by Tom·s … (1) In the Dinnshenchas of Cnogba, we are told that it is properly Cnoc Buí, the Hill of …
Sep 7, 2015 – In Irish mythology, Knowth (sounds like mouth), from the Irish Cnoc Bui, meaning ‘Hill of Bui’ is said to be the final resting place of Bui, or Buach.
Aug 20, 2014 – In Irish mythology, Knowth is known as Cnoc Buí, or the Hill of Buí. Buí is said to have been married to Lugh, a king of the Tuatha de Denann.
There are two stories told about how Knowth Cnobga got its name. In the first, it is said that it derives from Cnoc Bua or Bui (Hill of Bua or Bui). The name Bui is …

Royal Inauguration in Gaelic Ireland C. 1100-1600: A Cultural …

Elizabeth FitzPatrick – 2004 – ‎History

goddess.124 The Hag has also been identified with the female character Bui – the eponym of Cnogba (Cnoc Bui; Knowth, Co. Meath).125 In the Dindshenchas …

Knowth is described as the sister of the famous Newgrange, It has many Kerb … In the first, it is said that it derives from Cnoc Bua or Bui (Hill of Bua or Bui).


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Unvarnished History: Slavery Museum in Liverpool


“They will remember that we were sold, but not that we were strong. They will remember that we were bought, but not that we were brave.” — William Prescott, 1837, former slave.

We will remember.

I was moved by the unvarnished history displayed at the International Slavery Museum in Liverpool, England — how the city was built and profited from the translatlantic slave trade . And yet the English abolished slavery more than half a century before Americans did.

The museum is especially powerful in connecting the legacy of slavery to the present, and showing how it still exists in too many parts of the world.

It explores how millions of Africans were forced into slavery; the crucial part that Liverpool played in this process; how there are permanet consequences for people living in Africa, the Caribbean; North and South America; and Western Europe. “This story has been neglected by too many for too long.”



Drill Deeper:

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If America’s First, Who’s Second?

The Netherlands, Switzerland, Portugal, Germany, Belgium, Lithuania, Denmark France, Norway, Iceland and Spain compete for second, to Trump’s America First.

Vanity Fair offered highlights.

Posted in Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Iceland, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland | Leave a comment

20th Century Martyrs Honored At Westminster Abbey


Carved on Westminster Abbey in London are 20th Century martyrs, who include Grand Duchess Elizabeth of Russia, a saint of the Russian Orthodox Church; Martin Luther King Jr. and Archbishop Oscar Romero.


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The Face of Britain

 A History of the Nation Through Its Portraits
By Simon Schama
Illustrated. 603 pp. Oxford University Press. $39.95.

NYT: “This splendid book by the historian and art critic Simon Schama could ­hardly be better timed, since it might plausibly be argued that “the face of Britain” changed on or about June 23, 2016. With the “Brexit” referendum, British citizens voted to leave the European Union, as the supposedly United Kingdom sought to become — in the eyes of many observers — whiter, more insular, more Christian, as well as considerably angrier, like one of those howling popes by Francis Bacon, a favorite artist of Schama’s.

“This is hardly the first time the country’s identity has come into question, as Schama reminds us in “The Face of Britain,” a “triangular collaboration” of his British publisher with the National Portrait Gallery, from which most of his well-chosen ­illustrations are drawn, and Oxford Film and Television, which has produced a BBC television series to accompany it.”


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5 Myths About the Middle Ages

The Middle Ages, from the 5th to the 15th centuries, from the fall of the Roman Empire to the adoption of the printing press and the beginning of literacy, is still referred to as the “Dark Ages.” Matthew Gabriele, a professor of Medieval Studies at Virginia Tech, in a Washington Post column, takes exception to common myths about the period and punches holes in these widely held beliefs about the Middle Ages:

  • Islam and Christianity were constantly in conflict.
  • Everyone deferred to religious authority
  • Europeans were white and Christian
  • Everyone thought the earth was flat
  • These were the “Dark Ages.”

Did the dark ages really exist?

That time saw the emergence of
artistic marvels (Chartres Cathedral)
breakthroughs in the natural sciences
and literature (medieval poetry).
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