Late on this Christmas day, I offer a Pic of the Day taken nearly 13 years ago. It is in the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, a 5th century basilica (over a 4th century basilica) built over the grotto identified by ancient Christians and revered today, as the birthplace of Jesus. Church of the … Continue reading Pic of the Day: Christmas 2018
Continuing and concluding my series on the Winter Solstice, we now turn to the question of its relation to the date for Christmas. The moment of the Winter Solstice generally occurs on 20-21 December in our current Gregorian Calendar. With Christmas set at 25 December, the relation between the two would appear merely coincidental. But … Continue reading The Winter Solstice and Christmas, Or: How I Stopped Worrying [about How to Express Christmas Greetings] and Love the Season*
So today (still, barely, as I write this), 21 December 2018, is the Winter Solstice, making it first day of winter; and tomorrow is a full moon. Though we refer to them in terms of full days, both the solstice and full moons are momentary events: when the sun is at its southernmost point in … Continue reading The Winter Solstice and Halcyon Days
Today (21 December 2018) the Winter Solstice will occur at 16:23 (4:23pm) CST (22:23 UTC) . . . as usual, Ancient Dan focuses on the ancient and weird connections (and a three-part series is anticipated).
“Santa is dead; I have been to all three of his tombs!” That tongue-in-cheek potential presentation title is the idea of beloved former student, now-former colleague, and fine scholar, J Mark Nicovich. The conundrum of three tombs (plus many other claimed relics) arises from the traditions that St. Nicholas, bishop of Myra in Asia Minor … Continue reading The Places and Faces of St. Nicholas: St. Nick’s Not-So-Final Resting Place? Part 3 (Pic of the Day 2017-12-26)