Gaslight Digest Monday, January 3 2000 Volume 01 : Number 125

In this issue:

   Etext avail: conclusion of Meade's _Brotherhood of the seven kings_
   Re: Winter Solstice
   Ring Out, Solstice Bells
   Happy Christmas from the antipodes
   Today in History - December 27, 1999
   A little anti-war screed
   Generalship and Sunday Schools
   Re: Generalship and Sunday Schools
   Gaslight themesong: 'Net is slow, 'Net is slow, 'Net is slow
   CHAT: unreliable folklore
   Re: CHAT: unreliable folklore
   Calendar Tidbit
   Another Robert Eustace collaboration

-----------------------------THE POSTS-----------------------------

Date: Fri, 24 Dec 1999 07:37:45 -0700
From: sdavies(at)MtRoyal.AB.CA
Subject: Etext avail: conclusion of Meade's _Brotherhood of the seven kings_

THE mysterious disappearance of Mme. Koluchy was now the universal topic of
conversation. Her house was deserted, her numerous satellites were not to be
found. The woman herself had gone as it were from the face of the earth. Nearly
every detective in London was engaged in her pursuit. Scotland Yard had never
been more agog with excitement; but day after day passed, and there was not the
most remote tidings of her capture. No clue to her whereabouts could be
obtained. That she was alive was certain, however, and my apprehensions never
slumbered. I began to see that cruel face in my dreams, and whether I went
abroad or whether I stayed at home, it equally haunted me.

  A few days before Christmas I had a visit from Dufrayer. He found me pacing up
and down my laboratory.

  "What is the matter?" he said.

  "The old story," I answered.

  He shook his head.

  "This won't do, Norman; you must turn your attention to something else."

  "That is impossible," I replied, raising haggard eyes to his face.

  He came up and laid his hand on my shoulder.

  "You want change, Head, and you must have it. I have come in the nick of time
with an invitation which ought to suit us both. We have been asked down to
Rokesby Rectory to spend Christmas with my old friend, the rector. You have
often heard me talk of William Sherwood. He is one of the best fellows I know.
Shall I accept the invitation for us both?"

(meademen.htm#bro7k) (Fiction, Chronos, Scheds)
Meade and Eustace's _The Brotherhood of the Seven Kings _ (1899)

     Here is the Christmas conclusion to this outlandish serial of the grand
femme fatale, Mme. Koluchy.  We will begin discussing it on the Monday after
Christmas, 99-dec-27.

 To retrieve all the plain ASCII files send to:  ftpmail(at)MtRoyal.AB.CA

 with no subject heading and completely in lowercase:

 cd /gaslight

  The previous chapters are available as:


 or visit the Gaslight website at:

              Stephen D


Date: Fri, 24 Dec 1999 08:24:19 -0700
From: Deborah McMillion Nering <deborah(at)>
Subject: Re: Winter Solstice

>I can report that from a point in Northern Virginia it looks to my
>(poor) eyes very bright.

As it did in the country of Arizona, out of the city and behind the
mountains.  For once it looked like an orb foating in the sky instead
of a face, too.

>The Owl and the Pussy-Cat went to sea
> In a beautiful pea-green boat

One wonders if they pased Winken, Blynken and Nod in their boat of stars?

>They danced by the light of the moon,
>  The moon,
>  The moon,
> They danced by the light of the moon

And lest we forget the cow that jumped over that moon?

Happy holidays to all, still to come: Christmas, St. Stephens day
(don't forget to sing about the wren), Boxing day, my personal
favorite "Hogmanay" (who'll be Bess at your house?), New Years and


Deborah McMillion


Date: Fri, 24 Dec 1999 12:09:18 -0800
From: Alan Gullette <alang(at)>
Subject: Ring Out, Solstice Bells

In hopes of adding to the holiday cheer, though in pagan mode,
here's a Solstice song lyric by Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull, from
the album "Songs from the Wood" (progressive English [folk] rock
at its best!)

Ring Out, Solstice Bells

Now is the solstice of the year.
Winter is the glad song that you hear.
Seven maids move in seven time.
Have the lads up ready in the line.

Ring out these bells.
Ring out, ring Solstice Bells.
Ring, Solstice Bells.

Join together 'neath the Mistle-toe.
By the Holly oak where-on it grows.
Seven Druids  dance in  seven time.
Sing the song the Bells call loudly chime.

Ring out these bells.
Ring out, ring Solstice Bells.
Ring, Solstice Bells.

Ring out. Ring out the Solstice Bells.
Ring out. Ring out the Solstice Bells.

Praise be to the distant sister Sun.
Joyful as the silver planets run.
Seven maids move in seven time.
Sing the song the Bells call loudly chime.

Ring out those bells.
Ring out, ring Solstice Bells.
Ring, Solstice Bells.

Ring out!
Ring out!
Ring out!
Ring out!


Date: Sun, 26 Dec 1999 19:15:11 +1100
From: Lucy Sussex <lsussex(at)>
Subject: Happy Christmas from the antipodes

Happy Christmas from an Australian summer, where it is raining and we
are picking ripe apricots.

I am sorry to take so long to reply to the PICNIC AT HANGING ROCK
thread.  As far as I know the missing chapter of the novel (which was
excised during the editorial process) has not been published with the
original text.  It appeared separately in the mid-1980s, from
HarperCollins Australia, with a commentary from Yvonne Rousseau, author
of THE MURDERS AT HANGING ROCK. Whether it appears with the novel text
is another matter.  Joan Lindsay bequeathed the copyright of the lost
chapter to John Taylor, and any reprint would involve his permission.

It would be a good idea to do a reprint of text plus extra chapter in
conjunction with the Weir director's cut of the film.  Whether any
publisher has the nous to do it is another matter.

Lucy Sussex

(whose Grandmother (b. 1876) used to swear she could remember the
Hanging Rock disappearances)


Date: Mon, 27 Dec 1999 16:53:12 -0500 (EST)
From: LoracLegid(at)
Subject: Today in History - December 27, 1999

Radio City Music Hall opened to the public on December 27, 1932.

On December 27, 1900, Carry Nation brought her campaign against alcohol
to Wichita, Kansas when she smashed the bar at the elegant Carey Hotel.
Earlier that year, Nation abandoned the nonviolent agitation of the
Woman's Christian Temperance Union in favor of direct action she called
"hachetation." Since the Kansas Constitution prohibited alcohol, Nation
argued that destroying saloons was an acceptable means of battling the
state's flourishing liquor trade.

Read more about these events on the American Memory page of the Library of

Here is an interesting calendar fact:

The change from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian involved the change of
the simple rule for leap-years to the more complex one in which century years
should only be leap-years if they were divisible by 400. For example,
1700,1800 and 1900 were not leap-years whereas 2000 will be.

Carol Digel


Date: Mon, 27 Dec 1999 16:16:41 -0600
From: James Rogers <jetan(at)>
Subject: A little anti-war screed

    I think that you can, with justice, argue that this has little place on
a literary mailing list, but I was struck recently by hearing a "Civil War"
author as ascribing the union attack by the 1st Minnesota division at
Gettysburg to a piece of "audacious" stategy of the General and due to the
"gallantry" of the soldiers. Well, it was audacious all right. The division
in question is known in history for having incurred an 87% percent casualty
rate (the figure belongs to the author) in this one attack - an attack
which lasted approximately fifteen minutes.
    This put me in mind of Eisenhower's apocryphal comment when asked
whether he thought Lee a better General than Grant; "I would have
court-martialed them both". I had hoped that more sympathetic writers like
Fussel, Keegan and Hemingway had put and end to this horrible conceit of
"gallantry" when modern soldiers think in terms of terror and agony; lost
limbs and balls. The idea that a contemporary writer can applaud a gambit
that literally threw away an entire division simply stuns me. I had hoped
that we had learned the folly of his sort of stuff at Ypres, but our
armchair Generals in the alleged literate community seem to need their heroes.

                          James, the annoyed


Date: Tue, 28 Dec 1999 09:41:40 -0500 (EST)
From: LoracLegid(at)
Subject: Generalship and Sunday Schools

 The following is from
                             Our Sunday School
                             How We Conduct It
                                Waldo Abbott
                             an introduction by
                              John S.C. Abbott
                                 Henry Hoyt
                              No. 9, Cornhill

The writer of this introduction is John S. C. Abbott, whose brother, Jacob
Abbott has frequently appeared in these pages.
The brothers Abbott grew up in southern Maine, attended Bowdoin College,
and contributed to education -- particularly for women, and popular
literature - much of it designed for children.

In reading the following, which is full of (fairly apt, no doubt)
comparisons of the Sunday School Superintendent's task with that of
Napoleon in managing his armies, it is amusing to know that Abbott was
taken to task because his 1855 biography of Napoleon was considered much
too eulogistic.

This Abbott, by the way, was in the Bowdoin class of 1825, along with
Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and George Barrell Cheever
(for Cheever, see Issue #84: June 1, 1999: Fire and Hammer of God's Word
Against Slavery).
               Jacksonian Miscellanies, #86 Sept. 21, 1999
                       Generalship and Sunday Schools

The Sabbath School has proved itself to be emphatically the nursery of the
church. Wherever there is a well conducted Sabbath School with its system
of Bible classes, there one invariably finds the organized church in a
flourishing condition. There seems to be here developed almost as regular a
progression of cause and effect, as in any of the works of nature. God
shows himself as ready to co-operate, with his divine blessing, in this
sowing of the seed and gathering in of the harvest of spiritual husbandry,
as in any of the more material labors in which men may engage.

The skillful superintendence of a Sabbath School is an art of difficult
attainment. It is a gift rather than an art. As Horace said of the poet,
the superintendent is born such, not made. Some men have the innate
capacity to superintend affairs. With comprehensive grasp they can embrace
the totality of the School, with all its diversified interests, while, at
the same time, not the minutest details of duty can escape their eagle
glance. With tact, which God has given, they move, amidst their
multifarious duties, unembarrassed, instinctively deciding, in every
emergency, just what is to be done. As Caesar chose his generals, always
getting the right man for the right place, so they, by the unerring light
of an inward consciousness, decide who shall take the infant class, who a
class of refined and cultivated young ladies, and who shall tame a set of
coarse, vulgar, unruly boys, and who shall guide the mature and thoughtful
minds of Christian adults in the highest branches of theology. They know
how to classify the pupils, so that congenial and harmonious characters
shall be together.

Not a ragged boy can peep in at the door of such a school but he finds
himself lured to the very class to which he naturally belongs, and to the
care of a teacher who will not allow him to slip from his grasp. If there
is a teacher absent, the eye of such a superintendent instantly discerns
the fact, and the defect is promptly rectified. Or rather, a skillful
superintendent inspires his corps of teachers with such zeal, that almost
never is a teacher absent from his post without providing a suitable

As the efficiency of an army depends mainly upon its general, so does the
efficiency of a Sabbath School depend almost entirely upon its
superintendent. The first thing to be done in organizing a Sabbath School
is to get a good Superintendent. When Marshal Ney, in the retreat from
Moscow, performed a wonderful feat of heroism, in which he rescued a
division of the army from apparently inevitable destruction, Napoleon
grasped him by the hand, exclaiming, "An army of deer, led by a lion, is
better than an army of lions led by a deer."

As an able general will inspire all his subordinate officers and soldiers
with heroism, throwing, as it were his own enthusiastic spirit into their
bosoms, so an efficient superintendent, by the energies of his own mind,
can inspire a whole school with that ardor which glows and burns in his own
heart. Fortunately the free institutions of our land, our noble system of
common schools, and the elevating influence of labor, as combined in our
manufactories, has developed, in every village of our country, men equal to
these responsibilities. Any man who would make a good general, a good
colonel of a regiment, a good superintendent of a factory, a good merchant
having twenty clerks in his employ, possesses the intellectual
qualifications requisite for a good superintendent. He needs only piety and
zeal to fit him fully for the office.

William Cowper, the poet, as superintendent of the Lee Avenue Sabbath
School, in Brooklyn, with its two thousand pupils, would run that
magnificent institution into remediless ruin in less than six weeks. But
you might search Christendom in vain for a more admirable teacher than he
for a Bible Class of refined and highly cultivated young ladies. The
reformed and regenerated pugilist, fresh from the ale house and the prize
ring, who has just learned to sing the songs of Zion, placed over such a
class of young ladies, would drive them out of the church by the second
Sabbath. But it is doubtful if one could find a more desirable teacher, for
an untamed class of vagabond boys, from any of the streets of our great

Our Sabbath Schools are now attracting the attention and enlisting the
energies of our ablest men. The future hope of the nation is greatly
centering in these nurseries of piety. It is very important that the
teachers, in these Sabbath schools, should be familiar with the plans
adopted, and with the results of experiments in other schools. The writer
of the following treatise has had facilities, such as few have enjoyed, to
visit schools widely throughout our land, and particularly to study the
organization and the routine of the most celebrated and successful Schools
existing among us. The suggestions contained in this volume are so
eminently practical, and have proved so successful in actual operation, and
they cover so widely all the wants of the Sabbath School, that it may
safely be asserted that the book will prove of great value wherever read.
The thoughts which are here presented are not visionary theories. The book
is founded on the Baconian philosophy, giving facts, and the results of
actual experiments.

All that is here suggested may not perhaps wisely be introduced into any
one school. Each superintendent has his own peculiar characteristics, his
own modes of action, and he cannot pursue any administrative policy in a
line antagonistic to his own nature.. But he cannot fail to find, in these
pages, so rich in the record of the results of the labors of others, much
to animate him, and to suggest to him that variety of thoughts and plans
essential to the success of the Sabbath School.

The writer of this little treatise has, for some time, been the
superintendent of a Sabbath School in New Haven, composed mainly of
children from the most neglected classes in the community. In this school
the principles contained in these pages, have been carried into action,
with a degree of success which is quite wonderful, and which effectually
invests this book with the character of a safe and practical guide.


New Haven, Conn., June, 1863.
Copyright by the editor, Hal Morris, Hopatcong, NJ 1999.
Permission is granted to copy, but not for sale, nor in multiple copies.

Page images and uncorrected scanned text (with typical OCR typos) are
available online as part of the Making of America Project.  It can most
conveniently be found by starting at
The "Online Books Page" at

Some previous excerpts were taken from  The Corner Stone:
Issue #4: February 4, 1997 "School Days", and
Issue #70: September 22, 1998 "Revival (In the Old Sense) at Amherst".

Other material by Jacob Abbott appeared in:
Issue #79: March 30, 1999 (Abbott's Gentle Advice to Teachers)
Issue #80: April 13, 1999 (More Gentle Advice to Teachers)
Issue #81: April 27, 1999 (Rollo Learns to Read)

Jacksonian Miscellanies is a biweekly email newsletter presenting roughly
chapter length documents from the United States' Jacksonian Era.
It is free: send a message with
     subscribe jmisc
as the subject line to hal(at)
To make a comment or query, send a separate message to the same address.
Back issues of Jacksonian Miscellanies are at

Carol Digel


Date: Wed, 29 Dec 1999 10:52:46 -0800
From: Patricia Teter <PTeter(at)>
Subject: Re: Generalship and Sunday Schools

 Carol wrote:
<<The writer of this introduction is John S. C. Abbott, whose brother, Jacob
Abbott has frequently appeared in these pages.
The brothers Abbott grew up in southern Maine, attended Bowdoin College,
and contributed to education -- particularly for women, and popular
literature - much of it designed for children.>>

Carol, thanks for sending this to Gaslight!  I've been reading
Jacob Abbot's biography of  _Josephine_, 1851 and  I knew there
was probably a connection to John S.C. Abbott, but was unfamiliar
with the family.

best regards,
Patricia Teter


Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2000 19:20:35 -0700
From: sdavies(at)MtRoyal.AB.CA
Subject: Gaslight themesong: 'Net is slow, 'Net is slow, 'Net is slow

Hello Gaslight listmembers,
    the Gaslight website and the discussion list has been shut down for the past
few days. Mount Royal College, the host of Gaslight, took the precaution of
verifying its Y2K preparedness before presenting its interactive computer files
to the New Year.
    The email is now working again, and the website should be fully functional
by tomorrow (Monday, 00-jan-03)

    The last year ended with some negative, fin-de-siecle stories of bad
futuristic societies and destructive "new women".  This year will begin with
some stories typical of when the 20th Century was new; certainly, they will be
more upbeat.

                     Stephen D


Date: Mon, 03 Jan 2000 02:22:23 -0700
From: sdavies(at)MtRoyal.AB.CA
Subject: CHAT: unreliable folklore

Persuant to our pre-Christmas discussion of lame folklore, I see it is possible
to test one's knowledge of Internet rumours at the CNET site:

I didn't score very well.

Stephen D


Date: Mon, 03 Jan 2000 05:49:07 -0500 (EST)
From: LoracLegid(at)
Subject: Re: CHAT: unreliable folklore

CINDERELLA by W.R.S. Ralston
Yesterday I happened on an extraordinary article in an old journal.  Having
just ready Cashdans, The Witch Must Die, I dug right into it.  Urban legends
are really today's fairy tales.  The article concludes with a legend about
Pope Gregory the great, the calendar Pope, and precedes a marvelous article
on DINNERS IN LITERATURE., page 31.  Also see page 72 LETTERS OF CHARLES

To print from this series you must set your page set up to 50%.  Well worth
the trouble.

Appletons' Journal:  a magazine of general literature/vol. 8 iss. 1
January 1880, New York   p 19-31
SEARCH:  Cinderella

DIE: How Fairy Tales Shape Our L </A>
Carol Digel


Date: Mon, 03 Jan 2000 05:53:02 -0500 (EST)
From: LoracLegid(at)
Subject: Calendar Tidbit

The change from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian involved the change of
the simple rule for leap-years to the more complex one in which century years
should only be leap-years if they were divisible by 400. For example,
1700,1800 and 1900 were not leap-years whereas 2000 will be.

Carol Digel


Date: Mon, 03 Jan 2000 09:06:25 -0600
From: Chris Carlisle <CarlislC(at)>
Subject: Another Robert Eustace collaboration

The LordPeter list is discussing The Documents in the Case
by Dorothy L. Sayers and Robert Eustace.  This is a MUCH
later novel, of course, but if you're a real Eustace fan, you
might join us.  You can join the list at



End of Gaslight Digest V1 #125