Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Dyer, Sir James

Dyer's work, comprising three volumes of

Priesthood, Nonliterate cultures

The office of priesthood in nonliterate society ranges from the medicine man, who magically manipulates the sacred power as a quasi-impersonal force, to the shaman, who, as an agent of divine or spiritual beings, may be at once a medicine man, a visionary, an occult diviner, and a genuine sacerdotal cult leader. Not infrequently, chiefs or headmen of a clan or village may

Monday, April 04, 2005


Also spelled  levante  strong wind of the western Mediterranean Sea and the southern coasts of France and Spain. It is mild, damp, and rainy and is most common in spring and fall. Its name is derived from Levant, the land at the eastern end of the Mediterranean, and refers to the wind's eastward direction. The levanter reaches its maximum intensities in the Strait of Gibraltar, where it sometimes

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Benedict (xiv)

In 1417 the Council of Constance deposed the antipope Pope Benedict (XIII) and elected Martin V, thus officially terminating the Western Schism between Avignon and Rome. However, Benedict, protected in his castle of Peñíscola in Valencia, resisted until his death in 1423 and even reconstituted his court by creating four new cardinals. The intrigues

Gadda, Carlo Emilio

Gadda was educated as an electrical engineer and volunteered in World War I. During the 1920s he worked as an engineer abroad. He began writing in the 1930s and from the first demonstrated

Yamim Nora'im

English  High Holy Days  in Judaism, the High Holy Days of Rosh Hashana (on Tishri 1 and 2) and Yom Kippur (on Tishri 10), in September or October. Though the Bible does not link these two major festivals, the Talmud does. Consequently, yamim nora'im is sometimes used to designate the first 10 days of the religious year: the three High Holy Days, properly so-called, and also the days between. The entire 10-day period

Friday, April 01, 2005

Davenport, Thomas

A blacksmith in Brandon, Vt., Davenport began experimenting with electromagnets after observing one in use at an ironworks in Crown Point, N.Y., in 1831. By 1834 he had

Fable, Parable, And Allegory, Derivation of the terms

The original meanings of these critical terms themselves suggest the direction of their development. Fable (from the Latin fabula, “a telling”) puts the emphasis on narrative (and in the medieval and Renaissance periods was often used when speaking of “the plot” of a narrative). Parable (from Greek parabole, a “setting beside”) suggests a juxtaposition that compares and contrasts

Thursday, March 31, 2005

Omdurman, Battle Of

Preparations for an advance against 'Abd Allah's forces at Omdurman began at the end of July 1898, with the dispatch

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Main River

Latin  Moenus,   river, an important right- (east-) bank tributary of the Rhine in Germany. It is formed, near Kulmbach, by the confluence of the Weisser (White) Main, which rises in the Fichtel Mountains, and the Roter (Red) Main, which rises on the eastern slope of the Fränkische Mountains (Franconian Jura). The Main River flows southwesterly around the northern end of the Fränkische Mountains


Région encompassing the north-central French départements of Val-d'Oise, Seine-et-Marne, Seine-Saint-Denis, Paris, Hauts-de-Seine, Val-de-Marne, Essonne, and Yvelines and roughly coextensive with the historical region of the Île-de-France. The capital is Paris. The région is bounded by the départements of Eure to the northwest, Oise and Aisne to the north, Marne, Aube, and Yonne

Cancer, DNA repair defects

Defects in two mismatch repair genes, called MSH2 and MLH1

Monday, March 28, 2005


Also spelled  Ricercar (Italian: “to seek out”),  plural  Ricercari,   musical composition for instruments in which one or more themes are developed through melodic imitation; it was prominent in the 16th and 17th centuries. The earliest ricercari, which were for the lute, appeared in 1507. Well-suited to the technical capabilities of the lute, they mixed passages in chordal style, running scale passages, and alternation of high and low phrases