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Banking on Seeds

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On the Growth Of …

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Ghost Stories of …

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Country House Essays

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Edgar Allan Poe

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The Adventures o …

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The Human Seasons

Four Seasons fill the measure of the year;
There are four seasons in the mind of man:
He has his lusty spring, when fancy clear
Takes in all beauty with an easy span;
He has his Summer, when luxuriously
Spring’s honied cud of youthful thoughts
he loves
To ruminate, and by such dreaming high
Is nearest unto heaven: quiet coves
His soul has its Autumn, when his wings
he furleth close; contented so to look
On mists in idleness—to let fair things
Pass by unheeded as a threshold brook.
He has his Winter too of pale misfeature,
Or else he would forego his mortal nature.

March 13, 1818 J. Keats

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Italian Tart Recipe

Click here to view more great Italian recipes.

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Spem In Alium performed by The Tallis Scholars

Click here to learn more about The Tallis Scholars

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Traditional JuJutsu Health, Strength and Combat Tricks

CHAPTER V

THE VALUE OF EVEN TEMPER IN ATHLETICS—SOME OF THE FEATS THAT REQUIRE GOOD NATURE

In the writer’s opinion it becomes necessary to make at this point some suggestions relative to a very important part of the training in jiu-jitsu. Good nature is as essential to health and to truly successful athletic work as it is to any other phases of well-being in life.

When native students enter a jiu-jitsu school in Japan it is hardly necessary for the teacher to inquire as to the good temper of his applicants. The Japanese are noted for possessing the sweetest dispositions to be found anywhere in the world. Politeness and good nature seem inborn with the Japanese baby. As time goes on, and the child reaches adult age, kindly disposition appears to have increased in geometrical ratio. When a Caucasian applies for physical training under a Japanese teacher he is required to furnish satisfactory proof as to the evenness of his disposition. Even after he has been admitted to the school, if the white man shows too great a tendency to sudden anger he is politely requested to seek instruction elsewhere. Continue reading Traditional JuJutsu Health, Strength and Combat Tricks

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The Restoration of Rosa Bonheurs Horse Fair

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Why Beauty Matters

https://archive.org/details/why-beauty-matters-roger-scruton

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Money Saving Recipe for Gold Leaf Sizing

Artisans world-wide spend a fortune on commercial brand oil-based gold leaf sizing.  The most popular brands include Luco, Dux, and L.A. Gold Leaf.  Pricing for quart size containers range from $35 to $55 depending upon retailer pricing.

Fast drying sizing sets up in 2-4 hours depending upon environmental conditions, humidity and airflow.

Regular slow setting sizing sets up in 6 – 8 hours depending on conditions.

Should the artist wish to save their hard earned money, I recommend buying a quart of Rust-Oleum Spar Varnish instead for around $18.00.  It will set up for tack in around 2-6 hours depending upon thickness of layer applied and environmental conditions.  For a faster set, cut it with mineral spirits or turpentine.  Mix well.  Experiment on painted wood or metal with various cuts in order to determine what works best in your environment.

As it is often recommended that one apply an oil based sealer “primer” prior to applying sizing, especially if one is gold leafing metal objects for outside use, I recommend buying a quart of Rust-Oleum Topside paint for around $18.50.  The gold leaf specialty companies sell their so-called “burnish sealers” for $46.00 to $66.00 per quart.

I buy the white gloss Rust-Oleum Topside paint and add yellow or red pigment when working with metal objects destined for outdoor use.  Pigments can be purchased from most art supply houses such as Dick Blick, Utrecht, Jerry’s Artarama, and Cheap Joes.

For indoor plasters or wood, two coats of  Sargent Art Liquid Metal Gold acrylic paint works well as a base coat sealer. 

Unlocking the mystery….

There is no mystery to gold leaf sizing or burnish sealer.

  • Gold Leaf Sizing=varnish.
  • Burnish Sealer=oil based paint.

The real mystery is why are so many artists pay exorbitant prices for oil based paint and varnish.  I suspect a course in brand marketing, consumer psychology, and perhaps basic chemistry would be in order for one wishing to draw further conclusions.

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Congo River Boat Ride

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Unarmed Combat – Imperial War Museum Archives

Imperial War Museum, London

Video courtesy of Imperial War Museums, UK

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Simon Mann – The Mercenary

Video courtesy of LondonReal Youtube Channel.

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Bess of Hardwick: Four Times a Lady

Four times the nuptial bed she warm’d,
And every time so well perform’d,
That when death spoil’d each husband’s billing,
He left the widow every shilling.
Fond was the dame, but not dejected;
Five stately mansions she erected
With more than royal pomp, to vary
The prison of her captive
When Hardwicke’s towers shall bow their head,
Nor mass be more in Worksop said;
When Bolsover’s fair fame shall tend,
Like Olcotes, to its mouldering end;
When Chatsworth tastes no Can’dish bounties,
Let fame forget this costly countess.

From The Letters of Horace Warpole:

On Bess of Hardwick: She was daughter of John Hardwicke, of Hardwick in Derbyshire.  Her first husband was Robert Barley, Esq. who settled his large estate on her and her heirs.  She married, secondly, Sir William Cavendish; her third husband was Sir William St. Lo; and her fourth was George Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, whos daughter, Lady Gracek married her son Sir William Cavendish

 

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The Field of the Cloth of Gold

Reprint from the Royal Collection Trust Website

The meeting between Henry VIII and Francis I, known as the Field of the Cloth of Gold, took place between 7 to 24 June 1520 in a valley subsequently called the Val d’Or, near Guisnes to the south of Calais. The event derived its name from the sumptuousness of the materials used for the tents, pavilions and other furnishings. It was a spectacle of the greatest magnificence and the several artists responsible for this painting have made a fairly accurate visual summary of the various festivities that took place during the meeting of the two kings. Continue reading The Field of the Cloth of Gold

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Twelve Thousand Three Hundred and Fourteen Diamonds – King George IV’s Empty Crown

King George IV was known far and wide as the dandy king, incompetent, ugly, and vulgar.  As Prince regent, prior to his assent to the throne, he kept fast company with Beau Brummel, King of Dandies, a man sixteen years his younger.  And decadence followed.  King George was a gambler, philanderer, and spendthrift, spending in his lifetime well over £25,000,000 in today’s money.

Even his coronation crown was stuffed with rented gemstones for a cost to the government of £24,425.  The 12,314 diamonds had to be returned to the jewel dealers after the coronation as the government refused to purchase the crown for King George IV after the coronation.  The frame of the crown was created by Philip Liebart of Rundell, Bridge & Rundell, London.

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King William III on Horseback by Sir Godfrey Kneller

Reprint from The Royal Collection Trust website:

Kneller was born in Lubeck, studied with Rembrandt in Amsterdam and by 1676 was working in England as a fashionable portrait painter. He painted seven British monarchs (Charles II, James II, William III, Mary II, Anne, George I and George II), though his portraits of Charles II are not longer in the collection, and in 1715 was the first artist to be made a Baronet (the next was John Everett Millais in 1885). A set of portraits of naval heroes was given by George IV to the Royal Naval Hospital in Greenwich in 1824. Continue reading King William III on Horseback by Sir Godfrey Kneller

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The Charge of the Light Brigade

Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
   Rode the six hundred.
“Forward, the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns!” he said.
Into the valley of Death
   Rode the six hundred.

Continue reading The Charge of the Light Brigade

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An Accurate Transcription of FDR’s Second Fireside Chat

FDR 2nd Fireside Chat

The downloadable audio clip is of FDR’s Second Fireside Chat recorded on May 7th, 1933.  

The transcript that follows is my corrected version of the transcript that is found The American Presidency Project website that was created by Gerhard Peters and Professor John T. Woolley of  the University of California, Santa Barbara Political Science Department.

I am not sure why the available transcription and seemingly most other transcriptions of FDR’s Second Fireside Speech are so poor other than perhaps the transcriptions are copies of the written speech rather true transcriptions of the delivered and recorded speech. Continue reading An Accurate Transcription of FDR’s Second Fireside Chat

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Motel


Motel, Motel
Do Tell

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The Warmth of a Country Christmas


Tucked into all corners of the large stately farm house
Loquacious aunts, uncles of letters, adventure and public house,
Grandmother wrapped in wool, grandfather’s pipe
Gas fired ceramic tiled fireplaces, a Christmas delight
Glowing red ember warming through the night Continue reading The Warmth of a Country Christmas

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Indian Summer


We opened the doors on the old Dodge van
parked under the big oak tree
the old farm house etched with memory
ropes hanging down and an old plank swing
She kicked her bare feet playfully in the dirt
and then soared to the sky
Looking out over Illinois corn fields
full in growth, glorious acres of green and gold
laden with the best crop in years
The pioneer cassette deck
laid back tunes,
CCR, The Band, Seger, Canned Heat, The Outlaws
Night Moves slowed the swing down
A blanket in tall grass, a cooler of ice cold beer
chilled to perfection
grass of different colors move the clouds
breezy wisps sailing gracefully across azure blue sky
It was beautiful, Indian Summer

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A Conversation between H.F. Leonard and K. Higashi

H.F. Leonard was an instructor in wrestling at the New York Athletic Club. Katsukum Higashi was an instructor in Jujitsu.

“I say with emphasis and without qualification that I have been unable to find anything in jujitsu which is not known to Western wrestling.  So far as I can see, jujitsu is nothing more than an oriental form of wrestling.  It is a boast of the exploiters of jujitsu that through it any weakling could render helpless even a well-trained athlete, and that, too, without inflicting any injury whatever upon the victim.  It would be an entertaining day in my life indeed were I to see such a feat accomplished.” —Statement by Mr. Leonard after an exhibition by Mr. Higashi. 

“American wrestlers are strong — much stronger than any of us pretend to be in muscular strength.  After all, however, wrestling is wrestling.  Against jujitsu it is mere child’s play.  I have met a number of Western wrestlers, and they are as helpless as babes against the art of jujitsu.  And no one versed in the art of jujitsu is mad enough to expect anything else.” — Statement by Mr. Higashi after an exhibition by Mr. Leonard. 

Continue reading A Conversation between H.F. Leonard and K. Higashi

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Quotations

What is fair in men passes away, but not so in art.

— Leonardo Da Vinci

Artistic Endeavour in the Absence of Country Gentlemen

The Garden at Somersby Rectory by W.E.F. Britten

When one thinks of the English countryside or rural France replete with rambling country house estates and fairly tale chateaus sitting alongside grand chapels and country church spires, one might imagine a realm of manners, neighborly love, and country gentlemen. However, history informs us [...] Read more →

CZ Binance – The Coming Collapse

Bird hunters will tell you that a wing shot or one single buckshot spiraling out of the barrel of a large bore shotgun can bring down a high flying bird.

CZ, the CEO of Binance is apparently under high delusion to believe that contagion from the collapse of FTX will [...] Read more →

A Post Housing Bubble Implosion Theory on the Creation of Bitcoin

Bankers have dreamed of a digital dollar based cashless financial system long before Bitcoin. A decent enough history on the subject is available at Amazon.com with a book entitled: The Book of Payments: Historical and Contemporary Views on the Cashless Society ISBN: 978-1-137-60231-2

With the widespread adoption of the internet, [...] Read more →

The Treasure of Abbot Thomas – from Ghost Stories of M.R. James

I

Verum usque in præsentem diem multa garriunt inter se Canonici de abscondito quodam istius Abbatis Thomæ thesauro, quem sæpe, quanquam adhuc incassum, quæsiverunt Steinfeldenses. Ipsum enim Thomam adhuc florida in ætate existentem ingentem auri massam circa monasterium defodisse perhibent; de quo multoties interrogatus ubi esset, cum risu respondere solitus erat: “Job, [...] Read more →

The Age of Chivalry

CHAPTER 1 – Introduction

KING ARTHUR AND HIS KNIGHTS

On the decline of the Roman power, about five centuries after Christ, the countries of Northern Europe were left almost destitute of a national government. Numerous chiefs, more or less powerful, held local sway, as far as each [...] Read more →

The History of Witchcraft in England – The Beginnings

The Beginnings of English Witchcraft

It has been said by a thoughtful writer that the subject of witchcraft has hardly received that place which it deserves in the history of opinions. There has been, of course, a reason for this neglect—the fact that the belief in witchcraft is no longer [...] Read more →

Securing Your Bitcoin Wallet

Money box in shape of a temple, from house 25 in Priene; 2nd century B.C.. , Photo by Marcus Cyron

Reprinted from Bitcoin.org

Be careful with online services

You should be wary of any service designed to store your money online. Many exchanges and online wallets suffered from security breaches in the [...] Read more →

A Few Crypto Token Trading Realities

There are well over 10,000 crypto currencies available for sale as July 2022. One might think this makes for a rich market place with lots of opportunity for speculative trading, investment, and wealth creation. It might be pointed out that in 1899 there were over thirty auto manufacturers in the United States. [...] Read more →

Proof of Stake Equals Proof of Ponzi

Ponzi schemes and MLM schemes are by design corrupt. They are designed to confuse and or hoodwink the investor or participant into believing he is buying into a surefire road to riches.

When a computer programmer designs and programs a computer program, or in the case of the crypto-world, a [...] Read more →

Max Keiser’s Bitcoin Delusion

I have always enjoyed the rants of Max Keiser, he is quite entertaining. In fact, he makes his money by entertaining the masses, especially those prone to living in alternative “fiat-free” realities such as the cryptocurrency universe with the hope of subverting the power of “the Man” or the manipulative central banking [...] Read more →

Mark Zuckerberg: Tulip Pusher

The Tulip Folly, by Jean-Léon Gérôme, 1882. A nobleman guards an exceptional bloom as soldiers trample flowerbeds in a vain attempt to stabilise the tulip market by limiting the supply.

Mark Zuckerberg has become the poster boy of modern Tulip mania. It is not clear as to whether or not he is [...] Read more →

Penal Methods of the Middle Ages

CHAPTER I

PENAL METHODS OF THE MIDDLE AGES

Prisons as places of detention are very ancient institutions. As soon as men had learned the way to build, in stone, as in Egypt, or with bricks, as in Mesopotamia, when kings had many-towered fortresses, and the great barons castles [...] Read more →

Country House Essays Book Now in Print

Country House Essays, the book is now in print. This is an eclectic collection of both original, and historical essays, poems, books, and articles created for our loyal reader hear at CountryHouseEssays.com. It is jam packed with reprints of articles from this website. The cost is $49.95 for this massive [...] Read more →

Clarivoyance by C.W. Leadbeater

Theosophical Society, Adyar, Madras, India, 1890

CLAIRVOYANCE

by C. W. Leadbeater

Adyar, Madras, India: Theosophical Pub. House

[1899]

CHAPTER IX

METHODS OF DEVELOPMENT

When a men becomes convinced of the reality of the valuable [...] Read more →

Westminster Confession of Faith – 1646

CHAPTER I. Of the Holy Scripture.

Although the light of nature, and the works of creation and providence, do so far manifest the goodness, wisdom, and power of God, as to leave men inexcusable; yet are they not sufficient to give that knowledge of God, and of his will, which is necessary [...] Read more →

Growing Muscadine Grapes in Tennessee

The University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tennessee has a long heralded tradition of assisting farmers and growers through it’s Agricultural Extension Service. The following bulletin entitled Grape Growing in Tennessee discusses the Muscadine variety of grapes among others. Muscadine grapes are often found growing wild in Tennessee. On my grandfather’s West Tennessee [...] Read more →

Platform of the American Institute of Banking in 1919

Resolution adapted at the New Orleans Convention of the American Institute of Banking, October 9, 1919:

“Ours is an educational association organized for the benefit of the banking fraternity of the country and within our membership may be found on an equal basis both employees and employers; and in full appreciation [...] Read more →

Parting Words to Kate from The Sloop of War, Jamestown

Sloop of War Jamestown – Photo from book The Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies, Series 1, Vol. 3.

Several years ago, I purchased a small memory book entitled Album of Love from the mid 1800s.

Much like scrap books of today, these books were used to keep [...] Read more →

Historic authenticity of the Spanish SAN FELIPE of 1690

Model of San Felipe

Reprinted from FineModelShips.com with the kind permission of Dr. Michael Czytko

The SAN FELIPE is one of the most favoured ships among the ship model builders. The model is elegant, very beautifully designed, and makes a decorative piece of art to be displayed at home or in [...] Read more →

The Late Rev. H.M. Scarth

H. M. Scarth, Rector of Wrington

By the death of Mr. Scarth on the 5th of April, at Tangier, where he had gone for his health’s sake, the familiar form of an old and much valued Member of the Institute has passed away. Harry Mengden Scarth was bron at Staindrop in Durham, [...] Read more →

Classic Restoration of a Spring Tied Upholstered Chair

This video by AT Restoration is the best hands on video I have run across on the basics of classic upholstery. Watch a master at work. Simply amazing.

Tools:

Round needles: https://amzn.to/2S9IhrP Double pointed hand needle: https://amzn.to/3bDmWPp Hand tools: https://amzn.to/2Rytirc Staple gun (for beginner): https://amzn.to/2JZs3x1 Compressor for pneumatic [...] Read more →

A History of the Use of Arsenicals in Man

The arsenicals (compounds which contain the heavy metal element arsenic, As) have a long history of use in man – with both benevolent and malevolent intent. The name ‘arsenic’ is derived from the Greek word ‘arsenikon’ which means ‘potent'”. As early as 2000 BC, arsenic trioxide, obtained from smelting copper, was used [...] Read more →

Books Condemned to be Burnt

BOOKS CONDEMNED TO BE BURNT.

By

JAMES ANSON FARRER,

LONDON

ELLIOT STOCK, 62, PATERNOSTER ROW

1892

———-

WHEN did books first come to be burnt in England by the common hangman, and what was [...] Read more →

U.S. Plant Variety Protection Act – Full Text

UNITED STATES PLANT VARIETY PROTECTION ACT

TITLE I – PLANT VARIETY PROTECTION OFFICE Chapter Section 1. Organization and Publications . 1 2. Legal Provisions as to the Plant Variety Protection Office . 21 3. Plant Variety Protection Fees . 31

CHAPTER 1.-ORGANIZATION AND PUBLICATIONS Section 1. Establishment.2 There is [...] Read more →

The Master of Hounds

Photo Caption: The Marquis of Zetland, KC, PC – otherwise known as Lawrence Dundas Son of: John Charles Dundas and: Margaret Matilda Talbot born: Friday 16 August 1844 died: Monday 11 March 1929 at Aske Hall Occupation: M.P. for Richmond Viceroy of Ireland Vice Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire Lord – in – Waiting [...] Read more →