The General Roman Calendar dedicates particular days of the year to liturgical celebrations of specific saints. Only a relatively small proportion of saints are honoured in this way by the Roman Catholic Church, covering approximately half the year.
The quote refers to St Bridget, or St Birgitta, celebrated on 23 July.
Other female saints celebrated in the calendar include Agnes, Angela, Agatha, Catherine, Cecelia, Clare, Elizabeth, Felicity, Jane, Maria, Mary Magdalene, Martha, Monica, Perpetua, Rose, Scholastica, and Teresa.
Methodism originated with John Wesley’s evangelistic revival movement within the Anglican Church of England. Wesley, along with his brother Charles, founded the Holy Club while they were at Oxford. The Holy Club met weekly between 1729 and 1735, and focused on bible study and systematically living a holy life. They visited the sick, the poor and prisoners. George Whitefield was another significant early leader.
The early Methodists were reacting against apathy in the Church of England. The movement spread, and a significant number of Anglican clergy became Methodists in the mid-18th century. They drew supporters from all levels of society, including the aristocracy. Methodist preachers carried their message to labourers and criminals. Whitefield favoured open-air preaching to reach a broad audience. Methodist preachers were notorious for their enthusiastic sermons and were often accused of fanaticism. Many members of the Church of England feared that Methodist doctrines would have ill effects on weak minds. Following John Wesley's death in 1791, the movement was established as a separate denomination.
Ovid (43 BC – AD 17/18) was a Roman poet. He is best known as the author of the three major collections of erotic poetry: Heroides (The Heroines), Amores (The Loves) and Ars Amatoria (The Art of Love), as well as the Metamorphoses, a mythological poem. He ranks alongside Virgil and Horace as one of the three canonic poets of Latin literature. His poetry greatly influenced European art and literature, and is one of the most important sources of classical mythology.
His three-part Ars Amatoria sets out to teach the arts of seduction, and how to keep a lover. In part 1, for men, Ovid describes the places one can go to find a lover, like the theater, and how to get the girl to notice you. In part 2, he advises men on how to keep their lovers - avoid giving too many gifts, keep up your appearance, hide affairs, give compliments. In part 3, he provides love advice for women, including the importance of reading poetry, learning to play games, sleeping with people of different ages and flirting.
He lived in an age when artwork was becoming increasingly commercial and available to the common man. His novel approach was "painting and engraving modern moral subjects ... to treat my subjects as a dramatic writer; my picture was my stage." As a ‘comic history painter,’ he often poked fun at the old-fashioned, down-trodden subjects of religious art in his paintings and prints, and favoured real-looking, modern characterisations rather than Grecian classical beauties.
Thomas Creech (1659–1700) was an English translator of classical works, and headmaster of Sherborne School. He translated De rerum natura, an epic poem by Roman poet and philosopher Lucretius (99BC-55BC), published in 1682 as On the Nature of Things. The translation was very popular, and was often reprinted. Henry Fielding, however, doesn't think much of his efforts, and offers his readers an extract from Creech’s translation of Lucretius with considerable regret.
The Guildhall is a building in the City of London. It has been used as a town hall for several hundred years, and is still the ceremonial and administrative centre of the City of London Corporation. The term Guildhall refers both to the whole building and to its main room, which is a medieval-style great hall. Parts of the current building date from 1411. Many famous trials have taken place in the great hall, including that of Lady Jane Grey.
Jure Divino is Latin for ‘by the command of God.’ Daniel Defoe published Jure Divino: a Satyr, In Twelve Books, in 1706. The work is an epic poem, which refutes the divine right monarchy and its ‘virtues’ - passive obedience and non-resistance. It argues that this type of monarchy is mere tyranny, and any who give up their freedoms to obey such tyranny are fools. Defoe provides a history of tyrants from antiquity to ‘the present’ (1706) and ends with praise for King William’s rule and for the government of the time in England.
Together with Henry Fielding, Defoe was one of the earliest English novelists.
Harlot's Progress is a series of six paintings completed in 1731 by William Hogarth. It tells the story of a young woman, Mary Hackabout, who arrives in London from the country and becomes a prostitute. Mary’s character shares her surname with Kate Hackabout, a notorious prostitute at the time. The series began with the third image. Having painted a prostitute in her boudoir in a garret on Drury Lane, Hogarth decided to create scenes from her earlier and later life as well. In the first scene, an old woman praises her beauty and suggests a profitable occupation, procuring her for a gentleman. In the second scene she is a mistress with two lovers. In the third she has become a common prostitute on the point of being arrested. In the fourth she is in Bridewell Prison, beating hemp. In the fifth, she is dying from venereal disease. In the sixth, she is dead at age 23. The paintings proved very popular, and Hogarth followed up with a set of engravings of the images in 1732.
Xanthippe was an ancient Athenian. Her name means ‘blonde horse.’ She was Socrates’ wife, and is believed to have been much younger than him, perhaps by as much as forty years. She was a devoted wife and mother with Socrates to three sons. Xenophon's Symposium has Socrates agree that she is "the hardest to get along with of all the women there are," and that he chose her precisely for her argumentative spirit:
Socrates explains that the man who says "None of your soft-mouthed, docile animals for me, the horse for me to own must show some spirit" understands that if he can manage such an animal, it will be easy enough to deal with every other horse besides. Socrates endorses this view: "I wish to deal with human beings, to associate with man in general; hence my choice of wife. I know full well, if I can tolerate her spirit, I can with ease attach myself to every human being else."
Quintus Horatius Flaccus (65 BC-8 BC), known as Horace, was the leading Roman lyric poet during the reign of Augustus. He also wrote hexameter verses and iambic poetry. His career coincided with Rome's change from Republic to Empire. His poetry has been described as "the common currency of civilization." He published Epistles 1 around 21 BC, and Epistles 2 around 11 BC. In the opening poem of the first book of Epistles he professes a deep interest in moral philosophy. In the final poem he revealed himself to 44 years old and "of small stature, fond of the sun, prematurely grey, quick-tempered but easily placated." The second book of Epistles took the form of a verse letter to the emperor Augustus, at the latter’s request. It celebrated certain military victories, but was mainly devoted to literary theory and criticism.
Soap was a natural byproduct of candle-making and by the 18th century most commercial chandlers dealt in candles and soap, and were increasingly becoming dealers in a broader range of household goods. They therefore become a good place for household servants to share neighbourhood gossip while running errands.