{    Cnytr   }

{Sunday, August 24, 2008  }

.:{Poor Butterfly}:.

Serbian scientist Nikola Tesla -- at last in comics

A particularly talented, starving artist friend of mine has created her own webcomic Poor Butterfly.

Think: prohibition-era crime-fighting flapper. At present it is still in the early stages of the story line, and I await the rest of it on pins and needles. SARAH KEEP UPDATING IT.

Quite the feast for the eyes. Feed your starved vision!

posted by Lauren, 6:47 PM | link | 1 comments

{Wednesday, August 20, 2008  }

.:{Ronald of Scotland}:.

The Cathedral of St. Magnus; Kirkwall, Orkney, Scotland
Built by St. Ronald in the 12th century

In keeping with the Cnytress' love of random and obscure saints, today I will blog about St. Ronald, founder of the Cathedral of St. Magnus in Scotland. It is the onomastico of a certain Photographer, and I have already collected and emailed most of the information to him. But here it is, in blog-form.

Ronald, Earl of Orkney, the second of that name, and nephew of Earl Magnus Erlendson, the great Scandinavian saint, St. Magnus the Miirtjr, is himself said to be a saint. He had to contest his right of succession to his uncle's share of the earldom by arms, and being unsuccessful on a first attempt, made a vow that should he succeed in another, he would raise a church built of stone, dedicated to St. Magnus, superior to any previously in the Orkney Islands. All things, the chronicler tells us, then became favourable to him, and having succeeded in getting possession of his uncle's earldom, in pursuance of his vow, he founded the cathedral of St. Magnus in Kirkwall, which was built between 1138 and 1160, in the same century with the cathedral of St. Mungo in Glasgow.

Accompanied by William, the first Scandinavian Bishop of Orkney, Earl Ronald made a voyage to the Holy Land, visited Jerusalem, bathed in the river Jordan, and returned by Constantinople across the country to Durazzo, thence over the Adriatic, and by Rome through Italy, Germany, and Norway. The account of this voyage, which was as warlike as religious, is given at some length in the Orhneyinga Saga,
and with the interspersed poetry, partly improvised by the earl and his companions, is one ofthe most interesting passages in the book. This earl is characterised by Torfseus in his Orcades as liberal, moderate, true to his friends, skilled in various arts, and an excellent poet.

He was murdered on August 20, 1158, near Thurso in Caithness, where he and his kinsman, Earl Harold, had gone during the summer, as was their wont, to hunt the roe and red deer. His body was first laid in the church of Our Lady in South Ronald- shay, but, becoming resplendent in miracles, was raised with the Pope's leave by Bishop Biarn, and buried in the church of St. Magnus, when Earl Ronald was added in 1192 to the number of saints. So says Torfseus ; but the Saga tells only that his body was raised and buried again with the Pope's leave by Bishop Biarn.

From Notes and Queries

he foundation of the Cathedral is thus historically related. Magnus, Earl of Orkney, was murdered in the island of Eaglesay, one of the Shetland groupe, about 1115, by a rival named Haco. The Earl, on account of his reputed sanctity, was canonized, and his body deposited in Christ Church at Birsay, on the north-west of the mainland. His nephew Ronald, who had visited Palestine as a Crusader, failed in an attempt to gain possession of the Earldom of Orkney, and resolved to rouse the courage of his followers by religion. Before he sailed from Shetland for Orkney, he vowed that if he was successful he would found a splendid church, and dedicate it to his uncle's memory. This was between the years 1130 and 1159, but the exact date is not known. In the accomplishment of the work he found it necessary to parcel out the islands in lots among his followers and subjects, to induce them to assist in completing the church, some vestiges of which are said to be still perceptible in the feudal land-rights of the proprietors. The body of St Magnus was transferred from Birsay to the Cathedral thirty-four years after his murder, and the Pope declared Earl Ronald a saint for his pious work. At that time Orkney was under Norwegian dominion, and there can be little doubt that the Bishopric was then in existence. It is proved from some of the public records of Scotland that the Cathedral of St Magnus was canonically occupied in 1266. In the Parliament held at Edinburgh in 1485, seventeen years after the Orkney Islands were absolutely transferred to the Scottish Crown, the Scottish Ambassador at Rome was ordered to obtain a confirmation of all tile- transactions from the Pope, and the Cathedral was duly vested, along with the other rights of sovereignty, in the Scottish Kings. Soon after this annexation, James III in 1486 erected the village of Kirkwall into a royal burgh and episcopal city, with extensive jurisdiction, property, and privileges; and the Cathedral church with all its lands and rights, were conferred on the corporation with power to let or sell the lands, " to be always employed and bestowed upon repairing and upholding of the said kirk called St Magnus' Kirk ;" but the Cathedral and its funds were speedily re-stored to episcopal authority.

From The Episcopal Church of Scotland from the Reformation to the Revolution

In addition, there's a rather lovely hymn associated with St. Magnus (reputedly St. Ronald's uncle, interestingly enough) called the Nobilis, humilis, dated to around the building of the Cathedral or shortly thereafter. It probably would have been composed specifically to be sung in the Cathedral, probably on the feast of St. Magnus. The hymn is as follows:

Interestingly enough this page describes it as a "Viking hymn", and says:

The Magnus hymn is radically different from European church music at that time. It is written in two parts which follow each other in parallel thirds. The major third was regarded as a dissonant interval at that time in Europe (probably as a consequence of the then prevailing Pythagorean tuning, which gives pure fifths, but very nasty thirds).Obiously [sic] this was not the case among the Northern peoples.

The English writer Giraldus Cambrensis who lived at that time, also tells us that two part singing was common in the areas that had been settlede or influenced by the Vikings, but unknown elsewhere, so that he regarded this custom as a legacy of the Vikings.

(Note: post on Gerald of Wales may be forthcoming -- has an excellently hilarious History of Ireland, from an invader's perspective).

The hymn itself can be heard here, in brief, and can be downloaded in more length off iTunes (artist: Méav Ni Mhaolchatha).

The words to the hymn are as follows:

Superba namque colla gentilium
Virtute Sancti Spiritus humiliavit

Nobilis humilis, magne martyr stabilis
Serva carnis fragilis mole positos

Praeditus, caelitus, dono sancti spiritus
Vivere temere summo caves opere
Carnis motus premere, studes penitus
Ut carnis in carcere, regnet spiritus

Turbidus, invidus, hostis Haco callidus
Sternere, terere, tua sibi subdere
Te cupit et perdere, doli spiculo
Luncto fraudis federe, pacis osculo

With the translation (taken from here) as:

Indeed he has laid low the proud necks of the gentiles
By the strength of the Holy Spirit

Oh noble, humble, great and steadfast martyr
Placed beneath the burden of frail flesh

Well-favored, heavenly, by the gift of the Holy Spirit
With the greatest effort you beware of living rashly
You endeavor deep within yourself to suppress the motions of the flesh
So that the spirit may reign in the prison of flesh

Hakon the turbulent, envious and cunning adversary
Desires to scatter what is yours, to crush and subject it to himself
And to destroy you by the barb of treachery
By the compact of treason joined, by the kiss of peace

Buon onomastico!
posted by Lauren, 11:34 AM | link | 3 comments

{Friday, August 08, 2008  }

.:{In honorem festum SPND}:.

Dominican propers for today's feast! English translation (my own) follow, everywhere except the prayers, which I couldn't get fully translated in time:

Ad Laudes matutinas

Morning Prayer


Dominic, the Lord's own champion
Charged to spread the Gospel flame
Sent to men the Word to publish
And His mysteries proclaim.
With the grace of God within you
Like a hero lord your came!

Stainless as a burnished chalice,
Shining as a fiery brand
Dominic, you came to aid us
And to do your Lord's command
With the grace of God within you
And the Gospel in your hand.

Now again we nee your goodness,
Your our father and our guide!
Keep us from all sin and error
From your blindness and our pride.
With the grace of God within us,
May we stand close by your side!

Ant 1: Sitiebat Christi servus martyrium, sicut sitit cervus ad aquae fluvium.
Ant 1: Christ thirsted for his martyr-servants, as a deer thirsts for rivers of water.

[Psalms and canticle from Sunday, week 1]

Ant 2: Pauper in peculio, dives vita pura, paupertatis pretio caeli tenet iura.
Ant 2: Poor in estate, rich in a pure life, the cost of poverty is the rule of heaven.

Ant 3: Linguae manus studio scalam hanc erexit, quam Virgo cum Filio Mater sursum vexit.

Eph 3,8-9
To me, the least of all the saints, is given this grace, to preach among the Gentiles, the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to enlighten all men, that they may see what is the dispensation of the mystery which hath been hidden from eternity in God, who created all things.

R. Annuntiate inter gentes * Gloriam Domini. Annuntiate.
V. In omnibus populis mirabilia eius. * Gloriam Domini. Gloria Patri... Annuntiate.

R. Annonce to all the nations * the glory of the Lord. Announce.
V. Among all the peoples his marvelous deeds. * the glory of the Lord. Glory be to the Father... Announce.

Ad Benedictus ant: O quam speciosi pedes annuntiatis pacem, praedicantis salutem, dicentis Sion: regnabit Deus tuus.
Benedictus antiphon: How beautiful are the feet of him that preacheth peace, that preacheth salvation, that saith to Sion: Thy God shall reign!


In huius aurorae laetitia Dominum laudemus, qui omnes homines vult salvos fieri ad agnitionem veritatis venire. Ei iubilemus dicentes:
Laus tibi, Domine salutis largitor.
Benedictus esto, Domine, qui famulum tuum Dominicum Ecclesiae tuae ministrum dedisti et multis fratribus ducem:
-praesta ut eius ductu semper laeti proficiamus, et in tua misericordia fidentes.
Oculis omnium corruscabat Dominicus virtutum nitore, caritatis ardore et evangelicae praedicationis zelo:
-tibi, Domine, gratias agimus, qui nos ad eius imitationem vocas.
Ad eius sequelam decursu temporum fratres et sorores congregasti:
-de omnibus tuum amoris mandatum verbo et vita professis te laudamus, Domine.
Hodie, dum tibi placet ut permulti tam laici quam religiosi viri et mulieres Dominicanae Familiae titulo glorientur:
-ex eorum sollertia te cognoscendi et glorificandi Magistrum, honor tibi succrescat in aeternum.

Pater noster, etc.

Deus, qui Ecclesiam tuam beati Dominici confessoris tui, Patris nostri, illuminare dignatus es meritis et doctrinis, concede ut eius intercessione temporalibus non destitatur auxiliis, et spiritualibus semper proficiat incrementis. Per Dominum.

O God, who have deigned to illumine your Church with your confessor Dominic, our father, with his merits and doctrines, grant that through his intercession it not be destituted by temporal cares but aways go forward in spiritual increases. Through Christ our Lord.

[benedictio finalis]
Deus, Pater omnipotens qui benignitatem et humanitatem Salvatoris nostri fecit apparere in famulo suo Dominico, vos quoque conformes faciat imagini Filii sui.
R. Amen.

God, almighty Father who gave us the blessing and humanity of his Savior appearing in your servant Dominic, may he make you too to conform to the image of his Son.
R. Amen.

posted by Lauren, 10:50 AM | link | 3 comments