Thursday, 31 December 2015

The Time Traveller (3)

The Catalogue has copies of the 1502 plans that Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci produced for Ottoman Sultan Beyazid II of Constantinople as a civil engineering project for a single span 720-foot bridge intended to span an inlet at the mouth of the Bosporus known as the Golden Horn. Beyazid did not pursue the project because he believed that such a construction was impossible. Leonardo's vision was resurrected in 2001 when a smaller bridge based on his design was constructed in Norway (Wikipedia).

Time stays long enough for anyone who will use it.

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

The Time Traveller (2)

In the catalogue's index of great artists Mantegna, El Greco and Picasso are the recipients of the Silver Award, but with respect to the work of John Dewey only Time and Memory are credited as true artists as 'they remould reality nearer to the heart's desire.'

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

The Time Traveller (1)

For some reason the catalogue cannot identify the writer of the quote “Time travels at different speeds for different people. I can tell you who time strolls for, who it trots for, who it gallops for, and who it stops cold for.” The best candidate seems to be Rosalind Azulai.

Monday, 28 December 2015

A tide in the affairs of men

Once the return tide starts, it will be impossible to stem it, and it will prove our undoing. (Moshe Sharett)

Sunday, 27 December 2015

The Fate of the Great Elm

For all those who have contacted this Blog and expressed concern about the fate of the tree at the centre of the 2013 Great Elm crisis that spawned the whole alternative Seven Dials universe, we can assure readers that the Great Elm is still alive and well.

(Some avid followers of the blog have been arranging guided tours of the Seven Dials area. In the interest of avoiding punitive action by the local trading standards agency who act to protect consumer rights, it should be stressed that this imaginery Seven Dials is located roughly in the area of Hove, East Sussex, and has no connection with any other imaginery Seven Dials such as may be located in the Covent Garden area of London).

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Reason's Bleatings

A humbug is a person or object that behaves in a deceptive or dishonest way, often as a hoax or in jest. The term was first described in 1751 as student slang, and recorded in 1840 as a "nautical phrase". It is now also often used as an exclamation to mean nonsense or gibberish.

When referring to a person, a humbug means a fraud or impostor, implying an element of unjustified publicity and spectacle. In modern usage, the word is most associated with Ebenezer Scrooge, though latterly Professor Mundeign has been heard to use it seasonally.

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Aigua Corrent

Since there was considerable disagreement amongst the the Index editors about the section on inland waterways, it was decided to avoid any unpleasantness by publishing the following article in Catalan. 

El Portsmouth and Arundel Canal era un canal al sud d'Anglaterra que corria entre Portsmouth i Arundel , que va ser construït el 1823 , però mai va ser un èxit financer i va ser abandonat en 1855 ; l'empresa es va acabar en 1888.  El canal era part d'un pla més ampli per a la construcció d'una ruta segura cap a l'interior del canal de Londres a Portsmouth , que va permetre a les embarcacions per moure entre els dos sense haver de endinsar-se al Canal Anglès i possiblement trobar naus enemigues o desastre natural . Va ser construït per l'empresa Portsmouth and Arundel Navigation.

Monday, 21 December 2015

We learnt how over there.

The Times section of the Mundeign Catalogue is concerned with horology and biology. The suprachiasmatic nucleus is a tiny region of the brain in the hypothalamus, situated directly above the optic chiasm. The neuronal and hormonal activities it generates regulate many different body functions in a daily cycle, using around 20,000 neurons. The SCN interacts with many other regions of the brain. It contains several cell types and several different peptides (including vasopressin and vasoactive intestinal peptide) and neurotransmitters. On the other hand you could get a quartz watch from Argos for less than a tenner.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Saturday, 19 December 2015

A meek ending

In the poetry section of the index there remains an enigma - an unpublished Browning poem is mentioned which bears a strong ressemblance to one by Longfellow. The original review mentioned a duplication in the two poems. The Longfellow version reads: 'He caught the words, "Deposuit potentes  De sede, et exaltavit humiles;" And slowly lifting up his kingly head He to a learned clerk beside him said, "What mean these words?" Whilst the Browning version appears as: 'He caught the words, "Deposuit potentes  De sede, et exaltavit humiles;"And slowly lifting up his kingly head He to a learned clerk beside him said, "What mean these words?"  Oddly however there is no other mention in the literature of the Browing version.

Friday, 18 December 2015

Silhouetted by the sea, circled by the circus sands

Professor Mundeign's review of European holiday destinations is a little outdated. He writes that all Gaul is divided into three parts, one of which the Belgae inhabit, the Aquitani another, those who in their own language are called Celts, in our Gauls, the third. All these differ from each other in language, customs and laws. The river Garonne separates the Gauls from the Aquitani; the Marne and the Seine separate them from the Belgae. Of all these, the Belgae are the bravest, because they are furthest from the civilization and refinement of the Roman Province, and merchants least frequently resort to them, and import those things which tend to effeminate the mind; and they are the nearest to the Germans, who dwell beyond the Rhine, with whom they are continually waging war; for which reason the Helvetii also surpass the rest of the Gauls in valor, as they contend with the Germans in almost daily battles, when they either repel them from their own territories, or themselves wage war on their frontiers. All this is causing immense problems to EasyJet.

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Walrus Gumboot

In the folk belief system called hoodoo, a Mojo is an amulet consisting of a flannel bag containing one or more magical items. It is a "prayer in a bag", or a spell that can be carried with or on the host's body. In Professor Mundeign's catalogue the idiosyncratic indexing includes the Mojo with the Urim and Thummim, and the new Waitrose polythene shopping basket.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

The waspish thorax

The uniform geometrical theory of diffraction is a high-frequency method for solving electromagnetic scattering problems from electrically small discontinuities or discontinuities in more than one dimension at the same point. Relevant to discontinuities is the obscure folder marked 'Sapygidae' (solitary aculeate wasps) in which a notebook containing the following observation was discovered by Professor Mundeign. 'I will show you something different from either your shadow at morning striding behind you or your shadow at evening rising to meet you; I will show you fear in a handful of dust.'

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Poetry and the History of Celeriac

Despite its reputation in the literary world, there is less information in Mundeign's catalogue on the poetry of Dejan Stojanovic than there is about about the apium graveolens var. rapaceum (aka celeriac).  Even though celeriac was already known in Italy during the 16th century, it took almost two centuries for it to make it to the tables of the rest of Europe.  In England it was only introduced in the 19th century via Alexandria. Essentially, it consists of a large, white, relatively smooth edible root tuber, crowned by bright green leaves with hard, thick stalks. Its taste is very strong and slightly peppery.  Celeriac is poor in vitamin C, but contains numerous trace elements. It is a nutritional vegetable which provides lots of energy, stimulates the metabolism and acts as a diuretic.

More information can be found in: 'Edible Medicinal and Non Medicinal Plants: Volume 9, Modified Stems, Roots and Bulbs' by T.K.Lim. (Springer, 2014)

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

The Task of a Poetry Critic

In the considerably respected literature archive of Professor Mundeign's catalogue, the poetry review index is the Cinderella section. Few people have therefore read Ellis Gaunt's memorable critique of Stojanovic which focuses on the lines:

To be a wave understanding the influence of the moon; 
To be a tree and read the memory of the leaves; 
To be an insignificant pedestrian on the streets 
Of crazy cities watching, watching, and watching. 

― Dejan Stojanovic

Monday, 7 December 2015

The Landowners' Deposition

The Land Registry tracking archive which formed an integral element of the original Mundeign papers has, over the years, diminished in significance. However there remains an intriguing chapter which records the deposition by local landowners before the Sherif General (Southern Zone) which indexes the settlement pattern along the coastal areas which have been subject to irreversible erosion.

Sunday, 6 December 2015

The health benefits of Earl Grey

Earl Grey was a close friend of Thomas William Coke, 1st Earl of Leicester. Coke is remembered primarily as an agricultural reformer rather than a politician, however historians have questioned the idea that he can be credited with sparking the British Agricultural Revolution through the reforms he made to farming on his estates. He remained in robust health after his retirement, and in 1822 at the age of 68 (after 21 years as a widower) he married his 18-year-old god-daughter, and in his eighties had a fifth child. He took no pleasure in attending the House of Lords, however, describing it as "the hospital for incurables".

Saturday, 5 December 2015

The Conjecture - Don't you ever ask them why.

Professor Mundeign was an inveterate sceptic. Whenever he received a detailed academic paper, his first instinct was to shred it. In this way his workload became manageable, and only those with the greatest perseverance managed to get referenced within his extensive archive. It was therefore only by chance and luck that the papers of Felix Prupaddle were saved for posterity. The Prupaddle conjecture posited the theory of numerical imbalance in heavy coagulants of the x-phylum. Initially his suggestions were received with universal derision, but over the decades more and more investigators came to realise that much of what he was suggesting could be picked up with evidence using electromagnetic rondation. As a result the conjecture is currently receiving revived interest within the discipline of Pataphysics (See  "The Myth of Sisyphus"). Just look at them and sigh.

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

The Remains of the Ebony Bookcase

According to Lao Tzu, all difficult things have their origin in that which is easy, and great things in that which is small. The Mundeign catalogue began as a mere note slipped between the pages of a book on Quantum Neurology, and the recompilation of the catalogue after the great fire of Aix-en-Provence began after two building workers discovered a thin wedge of the original ebony bookcase that belonged to Casimir Mundane.

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Autonomy and Caprice

There is a famous quote by Lord Palmerston: “The Schleswig-Holstein question is so complicated, only three men in Europe have ever understood it. One was Prince Albert, who is dead. The second was a German professor who became mad. I am the third and I have forgotten all about it.”
The ‘famous professor’ is thought to have been Ludwig Emmanuel Mondan (1777-1863) who was born in Hohenzollern-Hechingen. For a while he lived in Southern England, and advised the trustees of the Lyrian Institute of Archeology, however he returned to Hechingen in 1829, where he married an Italian Countess (Maria Balbina Rinaldi) and began his renowned research into pseudo-political mechanical models. He was so distressed when his beloved homeland was incorporated in Prussia in 1850, that he went mad and was incarcerated in the informal lunatic asylum run by the Concipio Fellowship not far from Grosselfingen. In 1855 he ran away and tried to drown himself in the river Starzel. However he was rescued by two peasants, and lived peacefully until the age of 85, cared for by his mistress, Zuiprian Constanza Perrelin. He wrote seventeen theses on Autonomy and Caprice, and six of these are in Professor Mundeign’s archive and are currently being transcribed and translated. Ludwig Emmanuel Mondan was of-course Professor Yorvick Mundeign’s Great-great-great Grandfather.
(Ilych Mundane, Mondan’s grandson,  was also one of Professor Mundeign’s famous ancestors)

Saturday, 28 November 2015

Pirmykštis Tikėjimas

Nearly all of the subjects in Professor Mundeign's catalogue are of scientific interest, however there is  an anthropological section on magic and magicians.  These are not of the benign Harry Potter type, but studies and reviews focusing on the primaeval belief systems and deep superstitions common in the past but certainly not absent in the present.  His conclusion were succinctly summarised in his (unedited) notes from the Kaunas Conference: 'Tiek religija ir magija ritualai contenir. Paprastai, yra pripažinimas, kad ritualai ne visada; Greičiau, jis yra tiesiog maniau padidinti norimą rezultatą ateinančiais perduoti tikimybę. Daugelis ritualai, o dėmesys asmeninis bendravimas su dieviškąja ir dvasinio apsivalymo, kiti dažnai ieško "stebuklingų" teigiamus rezultatus, pavyzdžiui, gydomųjų aukso sėkmės mūšyje.

Dauguma augalai turėti turėti aukso turėjo savo praeities kai kurių stebuklinga šamanų tradicijos forma pripažįsta, kad tarpusavio dvasios. Tai gali turėti-buvo taip seniai, kaip liaudies tradicija, kad išmirė su pagrindinių pasaulio religijos sukūrimą, pavyzdžiui, Judaistas, krikščionybės, islamo ar budizmo, arba ji vis dar gali egzistuoti kartu su to pasaulio religijos.

Be to, abu gali būti skirstomi pagal poveikio jie gamina į suvokimo ir medžiagų mainai. Tai yra, ar malda Kai rašybos natūra yra naudojama, ji gali pareikšti apie faktinį jų keičiamas (materialinio) arba į kelią objektas jaučiasi (suvokimo) pasikeitimus. La même malda, nors būti "aušintuvas" galėtų Arba Todėl Tiesą sakant pakelti temperatūrą, arba tiesiog pakeisti temą meldėsi ir jausmas bet kurioje kitoje tikslus temperatūros. Tai nereiškia, kad suvokimas keitimasis nėra "tikra", kaip jis gali būti naudojamas gydant nutirpęs skausmo pojūtį, todėl gijimas imtis lengviau. 

However several authorities have picked up a number of inaccuracies in his words.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Weak Asymmetries

Professor Mundeign's metastudy on meteorological critical theory reviews the experimental observations of meter scale plasma irregularities in the auroral E region but neglects the significance of the weak asymmetries near the vortex care as well as the tendency for low azimuthal wavenumber asymmetries to dominate. But that's the way of the world, no doubt.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Infantas of Cordoba and the Battle of Lepanto

The significance of the battle of Lepanto has inspired artists in various fields. One piece of commemorative music composed after the victory is the motet Canticum Moysis Pro victoria navali contra Turcas by the Spanish composer Fernando de las Infantas.

Infantas was born in Córdoba in 1534, a descendant of Juan Fernández de Córdoba who had conveyed the two daughters of Pedro I of Castile to safety after the Battle of Montiel in 1369. The family was still notable in Córdoba at the time of Fernando's birth and he enjoyed a privileged education, and later a patrimonio, or stipend, remitted to him in Rome from his family in Spain.

From 1572–1597 Infantas resided in Rome, voluntarily giving his services to a hospital for the poor. In 1577 he came into conflict with Pope Gregory XIII over the reversal of reforms in Gregorian chant.

Infantas' theological views may have influenced his preference for predominantly Biblical text settings in his publications.

Monday, 23 November 2015

Sheshbazzar and Zerubbabel

The question that is never fully answered in Professor Mundeign's Catalogue is what credence we can give to those who doubt whether Sheshbazzar and Zerubbabel were actually one and the same person. Cyrus after all was not a man to delegate a relatively simple task, such as returning the temple vessels, to two people when one could do it with little difficulty (given a few hundred slaves).

Friday, 20 November 2015

Tomorrow maybe we will sail in boats...

Tomorrow will come if we don't lose hope. But rainy days still make my cheeks wet with tears, even now. (Ai Yazawa)

Bufo Periglenes

Amongst the Anuran Research papers in Professor Mundeign's catalogue, the Monte Verde golden toad has a prime place (though sadly only within the extinct species section). The Monte Verde golden toad (Incilius periglenes, formerly Bufo periglenes) was a small true toad that was once abundant in a small, high-altitude region about 4 square kilometres (1.5 sq mi) in an area north of the city of Monteverde, Costa Rica. It was endemic to elfin cloud forest. It was first described in 1966 by herpetologist Jay Savage, but the last sighting of a single male golden toad was on 15 May 1989, and it has since been classified as extinct.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Silence is a source of great strength (Lao Tsu)

As the Professor noted, facts never just come at you - they are incorporated by an imagination that is formed by your previous experience. Memories of the past are not memories of facts but memories of your imaginings of the facts.

Monday, 16 November 2015

The Sea, the Sea

The Illyrians (and later the Romans) considered Iris illyrica a medicinal plant with various medicinal properties. These included the healing of boils and relief of headaches. Parts were used in the ancient world as an anti-perspirant and for the manufacture of perfumes. 

Professor Mundeign's research suggested that it is actually identical to the Dalmatian Iris (Iris pallida). He acknowledges however that according to the International Organization for Plant Information the status of this plant is still unresolved, though it has been reclassified by some as a synonym of Iris pallida subsp. illyrica. Either way, its use in the treatment of sea-sickness has been controversial.

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Professor Mundeign's Wave Theory

Professor Mundeign himself was the first to admit that the Wave Theory that bears his name was in fact derived from the substantial work by the noted Ergonomist Edgar Treif who measured the speed at which waves of information were transmitted through a sounder of pigs (the name for a group of pigs depends on the animals' ages. A group of young pigs is called a drift, drove or litter. Groups of older pigs are called a sounder of swine, a team or passel of hogs or a singular of boars). There appeared to be a difference according to the extent to which such information was validated from discrepant locations on the abscissa and ordinate.

Wednesday, 11 November 2015


He would probably not admit it but Professor Mundeign is a world renowned expert on Cataphora. He would probably not admit it but he is also proficient in the use of Anaphora, (whilst recognising that it can be defined differently in rhetoric and in grammar). He would probably not admit it but once he's on a roll...

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Irregular Cadences

Free verse is not totally free. Le vers libre n'est pas totalement libre. In the catalogue of Literary Confessional Notes, Professor Mundeign quotes the comment of Selwyn Murdell that although free verse requires no meter, rhyme, or other traditional poetic techniques, the writer can still use them to create some sense of structure. Much pattern and discipline is to be found in free verse: the internal pattern of sounds, the choice of exact words, and the effect of associations give free verse its beauty. Well so much for Poetic Licentiousness!

Monday, 9 November 2015

The Richtiger phenomenon in avian and coelenteratic organisms

In the Logic and Improbability section of Professor Mundeign's catalogue, there appears a clarification of the Richtiger phenomenon, similar to the fallacy of defective induction. This is a conclusion that has been made on the basis of an inadequate or singular premise. When multiplied to an apparently statistically reliable number of observation, the error is maintained by predetermined sampling. The Richtiger phenomenon is a common neural propogation response amongst avian and coelenteratic organisms.

Saturday, 7 November 2015

Recent research on Moll Cutpurse

Professor Mundeign's indexed collection of Biographical Research was assembled from the papers of Llewellyn Dovebash (who readers will recall died in 2012). His most famous essay was on Mary Frith (1584 - 1659) who was the daughter of a shoemaker and a housewife. 

Nicknamed Moll Cutpurse, Frith caused outrage from her youth. Her uncle, a minister, once attempted to reform her by sending her to New England. However, she jumped overboard before the ship set sail. She presented herself in public in a doublet and baggy breeches, smoking a pipe and swearing if she felt like it. 

She was recorded as having been burned on her hand four times, a common punishment for thieves, and was at one time sentenced to do penance standing in a white sheet at St. Paul’s Cross. It did little good, since she still wore men’s clothing, and she set mirrors up all around her house to stroke her vanity. She kept parrots and bred mastiffs. Her dogs were particularly special to her: each had its own bed with sheets and blankets, and she prepared their food herself. She first came to prominence in 1600 when she was indicted in Middlesex for stealing 2s 11d on 26 August of that year. It is at that point she began to gain notoriety. 

By the 1620s Mary Frith was working as a fence and a pimp. She procured young women for men, and male lovers for middle-class wives. For a while to was incarcerated in Bethlem Hospital, but relased in 1644 after being 'cured of insanity'. She was reputed to have robbed General Fairfax and shot him in the arm during the Civil War. She escaped the gallows and Newgate Prison by paying a £2000 bribe.

She died of dropsy on 26 July 1659 on Fleet Street in London.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

As the strings of a lute are apart though they quiver the same music (Gibran)

In Professor Mundeign's Section on Musicology, the problems of combining lute and harpsicord were explored in a paper by Giuseppe Manceno (a follower of Gianfranco Lotti). The lute is not designed for large concert halls, and it is difficult to achieve a balance between the two instruments (despite the influence of the one on the other). The words "lute" and "oud" derive from Arabic al-ʿud (العود - literally means "the wood").Recent research by Eckhard Neubauer suggests ʿud may in turn be an Arabized version of the Persian name rud, which meant "string", "stringed instrument", or "lute".It has equally been suggested the "wood" in the name may have distinguished the instrument by its wooden soundboard from skin-faced predecessors.Gianfranco Lotti suggests the "wood" appellation originally carried derogatory connotations because of proscriptions of all instrumental music in early Islam.

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

He does not lie or change his mind (1 Samuel, 15)

Professor Mundeign's archive contains a note from the Institute of Neo-Hermeneutics, which records that in 1906 while trekking around the Upper Galilee in the area of Rosh Pinna, the agronomist Aaron Aaronsohn discovered Triticum dicoccoides (wild emmer) which he considered to be the "mother of wheat", an important find for agronomists and historians of human civilization. Geneticists have proven that wild emmer is indeed the ancestor of most domesticated wheat strands cultivated on a large scale today.

Monday, 2 November 2015

I am the master, and Song is my slave

According to Professor Mundeign's account of the Cognitive Tectonic Interpretation of History, the old poet of Malaga bore an uncanny ressemblance to the notorious heretic and bete noir of the Myopicts of Palmera. This is of course widely regarded as speculative.

Friday, 30 October 2015

The Garden of Earthly Delights and Disjointed Memories (with thanks)

True nostalgia is an ephemeral composition of disjointed memories.

Professor Mundeign's scientific, social and literary reviews are divided into several categories: part one of the catalogue deals with 1/ misinformed memory and cognitions (a subdivision of cognitive laminate theory), 2/ political rhubrics and historical detritus, 3/ Wernickan linguistics. (A full map of the catalogue is being drawn up, and will be available to coincide with the Chilcot Inquiry).

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

The End of the Magus

Professor Mundeign's Catalogue will appear early in November. As noted earlier, this catalogue will list and review the works of Professor Yorvik Mundeign, Tungsten Fellow in Speculative Cross-cultural Hermeneutics, presenting an accessible summary outline of reference  which would allow the interested reader to find their way through the immense library of his work.

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Balance in nature

In 1974, in a paper called 'If everyone pulled in one direction, the world would tip over', Professor Mundeign reviewed the then developing interest in the Gaia hypothesis, and in passing predicted the Daisychain mathematical modelling of the theory. 

Monday, 12 October 2015

On names

Professor Mundeign's article on the influence of names on inspiration has unfortunately been lost. However Messrs. Gugglepicks, the printer in Lewis High Street, did keep the original plate that was used to illustrate the article. It is reproduced here with partial permission.

 Live long and prosper.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Deja Vu and Cognitive Laminate Theory

In his review of metastudies on Deja Vu and Memory, Professor Mundeign found literature he was sure he had seen before. This research posited that there were significant links between Synaesthesia and Deja Vu, and that the subjective experience of familiarity was stronger amongst Artists and Mathematicians. The theory was developed in the DomTom by Sue Cathmel, who suggested that the phenomenon was based on the superimposing of different perceptual traces on the same underlying cognitive unit. This is derived from Cognitive Laminate theory.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Just in passing

Professor Mundeign spent 15 years trying to determine exactly what happened during the first second after the Big Bang. He had reached only the first nought point nought nought three milleseconds by the night of his 39th birthday. After an unfortunate incident with an antique sewing machine and some illicit drugs, he abandoned his quest, and retrained himself in the newly budgeoning field of Applied Cultural Hermeneutics, a discipline which eventually became the keynote and defining speciality of the East Rainham Polytechnic, a Victorian institutition which has latterly been reborn as the National Institute of Cultural and Empirical Hermeneutics, of which Mundeign is now Director.

Sunday, 4 October 2015

The Catalogue

This catalogue lists and reviews the works of Professor Yorvik Mundeign, Tungsten Fellow in Speculative Cross-cultural Hermeneutics. Following the publication of the complete academic works of Professor Mundeign, it was felt necessary by the editors to produce an accessible summary outline of reference  which would allow the interested reader to find their way through the immense library of his work. At the same time there was scope to bring together the increasing appreciation of his work in peer reviews and other evaluative commentary.