Saturday, August 30, 2008

Charles the Martyr, sun, yeast

Posted by Picasa The clock and bell-tower of the church of King Charles the Martyr, Tunbridge Wells. To answer Barrett Bonden's question, the church is dedicated to King Charles 1, the King of England executed in 1649 for his defiance of the English parliament. Because of his stand against the largely non-conformist parliamentarians, who led England's short lived revolution, he was canonised by the Church of England after the restoration of Church and monarchy in 1660. He was the last saint cannonised by the C of E.
A number of other churches were dedidicated to the new saint. The original chapel built in 1676 was enlarged to become the present church between 1688 -96.

Sunshine and the intense colours that come with it after days and days of grey skies seems almost miraculous.

There is something magical and deeply satisfying about the way yeast, mixed with flour and water to form a sponge as a preliminary to bread making, bubbles as it ferments like liquid lava inside a volcano.

6 comments:

Lucy said...

That's an interesting bit of istry. I seem to think Catholic schools are sometimes named after him, so assumed he was canonised by the Roman church, as representing their interests. I didn't know the C.of E. canonised anyone...

I can almost smell that yeast!

Re your mention of crab apple jelly: I like it very much, and it probably is better clear! Have you ever added a leaf of scented geranium to it? It makes it taste like Turkish delight.

Barrett Bonden said...

If Chas 1 was the best the CofE could come up with as a saint I'm not surprised they retired the process.

Plutarch said...

"...thence the Royal actor borne
The tragic scaffold might adorn:
While round the armed bands
Did clap their bloody hands.

He nothing common did or mean
Upon that memorable scene,
But with his keener eye
The axe's edge did try;

Nor call'd the gods, with vulgar
spite,
To vindicate his helpless right;
But bowed his comely head
Down as upon a bed."

Barrett Bonden said...

And now let's have a poem about the painful birthpangs of democracy.

Plutarch said...

I don't know about the birth pangs of democracy, but Andrew Marvell's Ode upon Cromwell's Return from Ireland, from which I quoted the best known lines, was in fact in praise of Cromwell. (Marvell was a dedicated republican). But he captured the feeling of admiration for the dignity of the late monarch, which one supposes was reflected when Charles came to be cannonised at the time of the restoration.
My quote sought to explain rather than justifiy that, nowadays, surprising event.
Of Cromwell, the reluctant revolutionary - and his deeds, Marvell wrote earlier in the same poem:

Tis madness to resist or blame
The face of angry Heaven's flame;
And if he would speak true,
Much to the man is due,

Who from his private gardens where
He lived reserved and austere
(As if his highest plot
To plant the bergamot)

Could by industrious valour climb
To ruin the great works of time,
And cast the Kingdoms old
Into another mould;
....
Nature that hateth emptiness, Allows of penetration less,
And therefore must make room
Where greater spirits come."

Barrett Bonden said...

"And therefore must make room
Where greater spirits come."

I suppose that's the couplet that counts. I am relieved to find that the earlier quote is a reflection of Marvell's graciousness rather than his political alignment.

That he was "Right but revolting" rather than "Wrong but romantic". I'm sure you're aware whence came these two apt judgements (plus many more).