In both [William Tyndale] time and theirs this was a modern translation, the living language of streets, docks, workshops, fields. Ancient Israel and Jacobean England went easily together. The original writers of the books of the Old Testament knew about pruning trees, putting on armour, drawing water, the readying of horses for battle and the laying of stones for a wall; and in the King James all these activities are still evidently familiar, the jargon easy, and the language light. “Yet man is born unto trouble, as the sparks fly upward”, runs the wonderful phrase in Job 5: 7, and we are at a blacksmith’s door in an English village, watching hammer strike anvil, or kicking a rolling log on our own cottage hearth. “Hard as a piece of the nether millstone” brings the creak of a 17th-century mill, as well as the sweat of more ancient hands. In both worlds, “seedtime and harvest” are real seasons. This age-old continuity comforts us, even though we no longer know or share it.
By the same token, the reader of the King James lives vicariously in a world of solid certainties. There is nothing quaint here about a candle or a flagon, or money in a tied leather purse; nothing arcane about threads woven on a handloom, mire in the streets or the snuffle of swine outside the town gates. This is life. Everything is closely observed, tactile, and has weight. When Adam and Eve sew fig-leaves together to cover their shame they make “aprons” (Genesis 3: 7), leather-thick and workmanlike, the sort a cobbler might wear. Even the colours invoked in the King James—crimson, scarlet, purple—are nouns rather than adjectives (“though your sins be as scarlet”, Isaiah 1: 18), sold by the block as solid powder or heaped glossy on a brush. And God’s intervention in this world, whether as artist, builder, woodsman or demolition man, is as physical and real as the materials he works with.
Researchers are working on developing 200 year-old technology to help firefighters fight blazes with electrical wands instead of water and chemicals. The method uses currents of energy to zap fires at their source and can put out small blazes or help direct larger blazes away from sensitive areas. The researchers working on the project believe this technology could be used to replace sprinkler systems, fire extinguishers and a lot of giant water hoses therefore saving us vast amounts of water and the toxic chemicals used in many firefighting situations.
The excavation of a labyrinth of tunnels beneath the Egyptian desert has revealed the remains of millions of animals, mostly dogs and jackals. Many appear to have been only hours or days old when they were killed and mummified.
The Dog Catacombs, as they are known, date to 747-730 B.C., and are dedicated to the Anubis, the Egyptians’ jackal-headed god of the dead. They were first documented in the 19th century; however, they were never fully excavated. A team, led by Paul Nicholson, an archaeologist at Cardiff University in the United Kingdom, is now examining the tunnels and their contents, they announced this week.
7. Weird News of the Week: Swedish Boy Survives Skiing Into Bear Den
12 year-old Olle Frisk was skiing with his friends near Funsdalen, Sweden when he fell through the snow and directly into the den of a female brown bear. The bear awoke and attacked the boy, biting his legs and scratching his back with her claws. Frisk’s reaction to this situation is startling, but it likely saved his life.
“I accepted death. The feeling was ‘let it come,’” said Frisk, as quoted by the UK Mirror. “She threw herself on top of me. It was only when I stopped trying to fight that I was given a chance.”
8. Quote of the Week: “”When the children of 2011 look back, they will not see this as the year their local libraries were taken away. This will be the year they all got libraries of their own” — Leo Benedictus
The European Commission on Monday unveiled a “single European transport area” aimed at enforcing “a profound shift in transport patterns for passengers” by 2050.
The plan also envisages an end to cheap holiday flights from Britain to southern Europe with a target that over 50 per cent of all journeys above 186 miles should be by rail.
A team of researchers from Stanford University recently announced that estuaries around the globe could provide 13% of the world’s energy needs. For those of you who skipped geography, an estuary is where a river meets the sea, and the team believes that these areas where fresh water and salt water converge could be tapped as a renewable energy goldmine. Whenever river water diffuses into salty seawater there is a slight rise in temperature – this energy could theoretically be captured and harnessed to create electricity.
12. Image of the Week: UP-inspired Floating House
Student care has been a high priority for many Universities for some time now, with increasing importance placed upon personal tutors and campus counselors to care for overall well-being. It goes without saying that traditionally such services have been provided by humans. That is, until now. Yale Law School’s library will today be making the library terrier Monty available to take out on loan, in an effort to reduce students’ stress levels.
Researchers in Texas have discovered thousands of human artifacts in a layer of earth that lies directly beneath an assemblage of Clovis relics, expanding evidence that other cultures preceded the Clovis culture in North America. This pre-Clovis toolkit appears to be between 13,200 and 15,500 years old and it includes biface and blade technology that may have later been adapted — and improved upon — by the Clovis culture.
17. Infographic of the Week: The Worst Jobs in the World Matrix
The self-styled “French Spiderman” braved a strong desert wind to climb the world’s tallest tower, Burj Khalifa, in what organisers of the challenge in Dubai hailed as a memorable feat.
Alain Robert, 48, scaled the exterior of the glass and steel skyscraper which stands 828-metres (2,717-feet) tall, over a seven-hour period on Sunday night.
The climber, whose nickname comes from wearing the outfit of the fictional superhero while conquering the tallest of the tall around the globe, usually works without a safety harness, relying on bare hands and sturdy footing.
Into the continuing saga of the search for Earthlike planets, a new study has fallen. It turns out there are probably fewer of them out there than previously thought.
22. HistoricalLOL of the Week
If you are on the hunt for an exclusive handmade hunting rifle, you seriously need to check out the creation from the Swedish gun and rifle maker VO Vapen. The VO rifles are all handmade by Mr. Master Gunsmith Viggo Olsson and his son Gunsmith Ulf Olsso using a patented takedown system, which allows the person to use several different calibers to the same rifle. The house also has the honor of being the makers of the VO Falcon Edition, the world’s most expensive rifle that costs about $820,000. The rifle, featuring engravings of Peregrine and Saker falcons, honors the falconry traditions in the Arabian world.
“We’re faced with puzzles every day in life,” says Will Shortz. He should know—he’s the only person to hold a degree in enigmatology, the study of puzzles. He’s also been The New York Times’s Crossword Editor for almost 20 years.
“With a crossword or Sudoku or any other kind of human-made puzzle, you know you have the perfect solution when you fill in the last letter or the last square or get the perfect answer. That’s what is so satisfying about it,” he says.
27. Better Book Titles of the Week – Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird
28. How-To of the Week: Deal with email overload.
Belgium tied Iraq on Tuesday for a very special world record: Number of days
without a new government. (It’s been 289 days since the inconclusive June 13, 2010, election.) Has living without a government made any difference to the Belgian people?
From allowing young people to socialize without the chaperoning of clergymen and other merchants of morality to finally liberating women from the constraints of corsets and giant skirts (the “rational dress” pioneered by bike-riding women cut the weight of their undergarments to a “mere” 7 pounds), the velocipede made possible previously unthinkable actions and interactions that we now for granted to the point of forgetting the turbulence they once incited.
33. Kinetic Strandbeests on the Beach: Alchemy of Art & Engineering