Two Lists of Labors in Honor of Labor Day

by Martha Rust

Today is Labor Day in the United States, a holiday that celebrates laborers and the labor movement on the first Monday in September. As Wikipedia explains in a quotable list, Labor Day honors “the contributions that workers have made to the development, growth, endurance, strength, security, prosperity, productivity, laws, sustainability, persistence, structure, and well-being of the country.”[1] In addition to honoring work generally, Labor Day heralds the beginning of a new school year and the return of students and teachers to the labor of teaching and learning. While the American calendar thus pays tribute to labor annually, the western medieval calendar honored it monthly, observing a wider array of labors than its modern American counterpart. Continue reading “Two Lists of Labors in Honor of Labor Day”

A Summer Classic

by Martha Rust

What comes to mind when you think of summer? Probably a whole list of things: long days, endless blue skies, beaches, travel, sandals, watermelon, and blackberry pie. That’s the list that first pops into my mind, but it could easily go on (and on): bicycling, canoeing, hiking, beautiful long sunsets– and broad vistas of all kinds. Continue reading “A Summer Classic”

A List-maker in the Stacks: Photographically illustrated books in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, 1844-1900.

Cités et ruines Américaines …, by Désiré Charnay[1]

by Colin Harris

Those who love lists, and I assume anyone reading this blog falls into that category, will know that they can become a bit of an obsession. In a retirement project on photographic collections in the Bodleian Library, I have found that so-called obsessive list compiling can have concrete rewards. Continue reading “A List-maker in the Stacks: Photographically illustrated books in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, 1844-1900.”

All in the Family: Genealogical Lists in Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Canon. Class. Lat. 9

by Amanda Gerber

Where should one draw the line between a content list for a mythological history and a genealogical tree for one? When created in reference to Ovid’s Metamorphoses, both include the same names, the same chronological order, and the same interest in organizing events according to the people who enacted them. Continue reading “All in the Family: Genealogical Lists in Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Canon. Class. Lat. 9”

Creative Lists in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings – Part III

by Rahel Orgis

In my previous post, I highlighted that Tolkien introduces the appendices to The Lord of the Rings as based on pseudo-factual records collected by hobbits. The same goes for the main narrative, which, according to the Prologue, “is drawn mainly from the Red Book of Westmarch” (I, 23): that is, the account of the novel’s events “as seen by the Little People” (III, 307), compiled primarily by the hobbit protagonists Bilbo and Frodo Baggins. The Prologue further explains that, being involved in these momentous events, hobbits took “a more widespread interest in their own history,” leading them to compile for the first time “their traditions” (I, 23). Continue reading “Creative Lists in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings – Part III”

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