Of Slogans: Hard and Soft

The Divine Captain

….that nane of thaim name thair capitane with ony uthir sloggone, bot with the auld name of that tribe;, and quhen thay heir his name, to bek and discover thair heid, with na les reverence than he war a God. I thairfore, that the pepill that dwellis in hie land, or in the Ilis, quhen thair hieest besines occurris, sweria be the foote or hand, or name of thair capitane, as sum hid divinite war in the same.

Ewin, to stabil his realme in virtew, commandit the young children of his realme to be nurist with skars and hard fude; and to sleip erar on hard burdis, than on plumis or coddis; and to be ithandly exercit in swift rinning and wrsling, to make thaim the more abill to debait his realme, quhen time requitit; and ordanit thaim, to abstene fra all thing that micht make thaim soft or effeminat.


Hector Boece, The History and Chronicles of Scotland Vol. 1


The Musculus

Urget majora (He urges on Greater)

“There be examples of freindship among the fishes, besides those of whose societie and fellowship I have allreadie written, namely betweene the  great whale and balaena, and the little musculus. For whereas the whale aforesaid hath no use of his eies (by reason of the heavie weight of his eie- brows that cover them) the other swimmeth before him in steed of eies and lights, to shew that hee is neere the shelves and shallows, wherein he may be soone grounded, so big and huge is he.”

Pliny Natural history


Urget majora was the motto of James V. of Scotland

On Conductors of Heat The Infection of Dead Bodies etc. etc.

An Account of Toads found enclosed in solid stone.

At Passy, near Paris, April 6th, 1782, being with M. de Chaumont, viewing his quarry, he mentioned to me, that the workmen had found a living toad shut up in stone. On questioning one of them, he told us, they had found four in different cells which had no communication; that they were very lively and active when set at liberty; that there was in each cell some loose yellowish earth, which appeared to be very moist. We asked, if he could show us the parts of the stone that formed the cells. He said No…..

The workmen have promised to call us, if they meet with anymore, that we may examine the situation.


The Works of Benjamin Franklin: Containing Several Political and Historical Tracts. Vol. 6

Related Posts

She’s Not There

I Mark, Give Form, I Bring To The Attention Of

The Monuments Thereof: What Some Say

I arrived at Hamrange Post-house during the night.

The people here talked of an extraordinary kind of tree, growing near the road, which many persons has visited, but none could find out what it was. Some said it was an apple tree which had been cursed by a beggar- woman, who one day having gathered an apple from it, and being on that account siezed by the proprietor of the tree, declared that the tree should never bear fruit any more.

Next morning I arose with the sun in order to examine this wonderful tree, which was pointed out to me from a distance. It proved nothing more than a common Elm. Hence however we learn that the Elm is not a common tree in this part of the world.


Linnaeus, A Tour in Lapland

Nature and Things

To be temperate is the greatest virtue. Wisdom consists in
speaking and acting the truth, giving heed to the nature of



Greek, sophrosume, derives saos =safe, phorn= mind, thoughtful, centered balanced. English, temperate from Latin temperatus origin, tempus =time, right time, being in touch. A proper time for action i.e season. Temperance = avoidance of alcohol, temper=anger


W. Harris (trans) Heraclitus, The Complete Fragments

In A Landscape

For Every Ripple A Wave

“I inquired whether the children are kept longer at the breast than is usual with us,  and was answered in the affirmative. They are allowed that nourishment more than twice as long as other places. I have a notion that Adam and Eve were giants, and that mankind from one generation to another, owing to poverty and other causes, have diminished in size. Hence the diminutive stature of the Laplanders*.

* The original is very obscure, and I have been obliged partly to guess at the sense of the intermingled Latin and Swedish. I beg leave to suggest that the deficiency of brandy among this sequestered people is perhaps a more probable cause of their robust stature, and even if their neatness and refinement, than that assigned by Linnaeus.


Linnaeus,  Tour in Lapland


Linnaeus’s journal notes are from his tour of lapland in  1732

The Editors notes are from English edition, 1811

Whats my Name?

Among the great numbers who drink Tar water in Dublin, your letter informs me there are Feveral, that make it too weak or too Ftrong, or ufe it in an undue manner. To obviate thefe inconveniences, and render this water as generally ufeful as poffible, you defire I would draw up some rules, and remarks, in a small compafs; which accordingly I here fend you.

Norwegian tar being the moft liquid, mixeth beft with water. Put a gallon of cold water to a quart of this tar, Ftir and work them very ftrongly together, with a flat ftick, for about four minutes. Let the veffel ftand and covered forty eight hours, that the tar may fubfide. Then pour off the clear water, and keep it clofe covered, or rather bottled, and well stopped, for Ufe. This may do for general rule; but as ftomachs and conftitutions are fo various, for particular perfons, their own experiance is the best rule. The ftronger the better; provided the ftomach can bear it……

I never knew anything fo good for the stomach as tar water.

Tar water is something of a cure- all for a range of illness, small pox (Berkeley flags its use in the American colonies as the prime example of its effectiveness in treatment here), scurvy, gout, ulcer and intestinal issues. Its long been used as a folk remedy for dyspepsia.



G. Berkekey, Siris: A Chain of Philosophical Reflections and Inquiries Concerning the Virtue of Tar Water, And divers other Subjects connected together and arifing one from the another