patriotism, n. : Oxford English Dictionary

1791   J. Boswell Life Johnson anno 1775 I. 478   [Johnson:] Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.

via patriotism, n. : Oxford English Dictionary.


Love this quote. Yay for scoundrels!


If Queen Victoria had a scrapbook…

I just found this lovely website: an online scrapbook of Queen Victoria. The site was created by the British Monarchy website (click here for the main site), and it designed to look just like an actual scrapbook. It has images, letters, maps and even some actual film footage from her Diamond Jubilee in 1897! I was astonished to see that there was film footage – it boggles the mind to realize that she was crowned in the middle of the 19th century, before the American Civil War, and lived through until the beginning of the last century. And here we are, in our living rooms and bedrooms learning about her on the internet at the dawn of the our century. It’s weird to realize that while the world was such a different place then, we are not really that far away from it. I wonder what Victoria would make of the world today?
Thanks to Two Nerdy History Girls for the link to the site!

A great link about plague

I have an unhealthy (ha ha! Sorry, bad pun) obsession with the Black Death. I did a paper on it in college, and I love teaching it to my students (the only benefit to teaching the freshman World History course, as far as I can tell). So when I saw this link (via Two Nerdy History Girls, I just couldn’t resist. A neat little tidbit about plague masks. Enjoy! (link is below)


Behind the Mask: The Plague Doctor.

via Behind the Mask: The Plague Doctor.

In which our heroine asks a question

Recently, I have had the phrase “In which…” running through my mind.  I mean this phrase to be used as part of a chapter title.  “In which much is said about a tea party”  “In which a man buys a hat”  “In which a secret is revealed” or some other such thing.  I am not entirely certain why this particular phrase is running through my head (and I do wish that it would at least take a bit of a rest, as it can be tiring), but I do know that I would like to know from whence it came.  Or, more particularly, from which time period one would have seen these kinds of chapter titles.  Is this Victorian?  18th century?  Where might I have seen these kinds of titles?