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Author Topic: What are you currently reading ?  (Read 399709 times)
fsn
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« Reply #2955 on: 04 March 2019, 08:22:08 AM »

Reading The Dark Ages by Charles Oman.  I can understand the desire to show off ones erudition but I think dropping in the word poliorcetics might have been a step to far even in the year 1893.
My Victorian edition of the Sir Edward Creasy (loaned to a "friend" and never returned) would quote Greeks and Latins and French ... but without translation. It became a bit frustrating - "as Herodotus put it ..." then a lot of what was frankly Greek to me.

I suppose it reflected his intended audience.


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Lord Oik of Runcorn
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paulr
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« Reply #2956 on: 04 March 2019, 08:49:48 AM »

Is it good or bad that I only know that poliorcetics is the art of siege craft because of Demetrios Poliorcetes (Demetrius he Besieger) son of Antigonus Monopthalmos (Antigonus the One-Eyed) both major players in the wars of succession after Alexander the Great's death.

A walking encyclopaedia of arcane and inconsequential facts, that's me Cheesy

Both Grin
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kipt
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« Reply #2957 on: 04 March 2019, 01:42:35 PM »

More soap opera...Finished "Sword Song: The Battle for London" by Bernard Cornwell.  London was called Lundene at this point of time.

Another sword and ax tale and this is book 4.
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Leman
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« Reply #2958 on: 04 March 2019, 02:23:03 PM »

By 2647 it will probably be called Lnun. The English language seems to be collapsing in on itself.
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The artist formerly known as Dour Puritan!
Techno
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« Reply #2959 on: 04 March 2019, 02:58:41 PM »

Listening to "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy."

Cheers - Phil
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Ithoriel
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« Reply #2960 on: 04 March 2019, 06:30:42 PM »

By 2647 it will probably be called Lnun. The English language seems to be collapsing in on itself.

At the rate we're going, it will be a site of scientific interest where alien documentary broadcasters will come to pontificate

"This appears to be the site of one of the major population centres of the indigenous apex predator just before their extinction. It is unclear whether it's destruction was due to intra-species conflict, the devastating effects of global climate change or the unfortunate incident in which one of our Titan Class starships impacted on the surface during the mission in which Elvis Presley was returning the monster to Loch Ness."
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FierceKitty
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The dog is a peasant. The cat is a gentleman.


« Reply #2961 on: 05 March 2019, 12:28:03 AM »

Distressing that the Minbari-Klingon alliance seems set to embrace the groc'ers apostrophe.  Cry
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Leman
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« Reply #2962 on: 05 March 2019, 07:44:17 AM »

Someone uttered the word Brexit for the four billionth time and the entire 15 million just sighed and gave up the ghost.
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The artist formerly known as Dour Puritan!
steve_holmes_11
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« Reply #2963 on: 05 March 2019, 09:58:12 AM »

My Victorian edition of the Sir Edward Creasy (loaned to a "friend" and never returned) would quote Greeks and Latins and French ... but without translation. It became a bit frustrating - "as Herodotus put it ..." then a lot of what was frankly Greek to me.

I suppose it reflected his intended audience.

It's remarkable how a bit of obscure language can convert a readable storyline into a hard slog.

A few years back I and some friends decided to read some Joseph Conrad, hoping for some scenario inspiration.
Heart of Darkness is his most famous, probably because of its screen adaptations.
Many of his other sea stories are set in what was then called the Malay Archipelago (Now Malay Borneo and Indonesia).
They are littered with dialogue that incorporates Melayu Pasar (lit. Market Malay) - the lingua franca of the region which forms the main basis for the modern Indonesian language, often using contemporary Dutch spellings.

Accidents of history mean I've acquired some knowledge of Indonesian and Dutch.
While I was able to glide through the dialogue, friends were struggling to leaf back and forth between a lengthy glossary and the story.
They found this interrupted the flow and turned an accessible read into a really difficult slog.

Though we found some gaming inspiration (Essentially the same 3 cultures presented in Darkest Africa: Tribal, Local Kingdoms, Regional Influence (In this case pirates) and the far-away colonial power).
There's a dearth of figures, and we decided we would be moving Darkest Africa to a different continent with few changes.

We also mentioned that Conrad's sea stories have a certain similarity, and if transposed to the Aegean and back 2500 years, they would sit nicely with the heroic Greek myths.

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FierceKitty
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The dog is a peasant. The cat is a gentleman.


« Reply #2964 on: 06 March 2019, 12:45:13 AM »

I have to admit I've always found Conrad hard going. His female characters in particular have a triviality that makes Mickey Mouse look like Hamlet.
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Techno
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« Reply #2965 on: 06 March 2019, 08:24:22 AM »

No....It was Donald Duck that played Hamlet.





Cheers - Phil
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FierceKitty
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The dog is a peasant. The cat is a gentleman.


« Reply #2966 on: 06 March 2019, 08:42:32 AM »

Of course. My mistake. I was thinking of Mickey in Ibsen's A Doll's Mouse.
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steve_holmes_11
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« Reply #2967 on: 06 March 2019, 09:06:21 AM »

In these parts we constantly re-assess Goofy's role in Bergman's Seventh Seal.

Was the story enhanced by changing the chess game to a keepy-uppie contest etc etc.
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FierceKitty
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The dog is a peasant. The cat is a gentleman.


« Reply #2968 on: 06 March 2019, 09:10:42 AM »

Did you know Wagner considered calling Tannhaueser by the name of Die Minnie Singer vom Venusberg?
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steve_holmes_11
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« Reply #2969 on: 06 March 2019, 09:20:49 AM »

I have to admit I've always found Conrad hard going. His female characters in particular have a triviality that makes Mickey Mouse look like Hamlet.

That's one of the things that struck me as "Straight outta Athens".
Most of those Greek ladies (or barbarian women) are one dimensional ciphers who bring their menfolk misfortune or death.
Honourable exception for Penelope at the end of the Odyssey (Probably Mrs Travers from The Rescue in Conrad's works).

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