Category Archives: Literature

Naming Book Titles After Just Hearing The First Lines

A few years ago, I met someone who said that he would be able to know the title of a popular book by only reading the first line or two of the book to him. I decided to test his … Continue reading

Posted in Literature, Oddities, Puzzles | Tagged , , , , | 23 Comments

Gleanings From The Past #11

Punning The Hon. Henry Erskine is as distinguished for that species of wit called punning, as George Selwyn was formerly in England. — “Punning is the lowest sort of wit,” said a gentleman to him one day; “It is so,” … Continue reading

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Postscript

J. M. Barrie (1860-1937), the creator of Peter Pan, had been looking forward to meeting with the poet A. E. Housman (1859-1936). In December 1922, a meeting between the two was arranged in Trinity College, Cambridge. It turned out that it … Continue reading

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A Hidden Message In Shakespeare’s 115th Sonnet

In William Shakespeare’s 115th Sonnet, there is a hidden message which isn’t that obvious at first glance:

Posted in Language, Literature, Poetry | Tagged , , , , | 31 Comments

A Double-Faced Creed

The following is a double-faced creed first published in The Weekly Pacquet of Advice from Rome in 1679. This was called the “Jesuits’ Creed” in England. Why is it called a double-faced creed? This creed would suit either the Catholics … Continue reading

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In Search Of The Island Of Utopia

A utopia is an imaginary place or society where everything is perfect. It’s derived from Greek “ou” (οὐ) meaning “not” and topos (τόπος) meaning “place”, and it literally means “no place” or “nowhere”. The word was first used in Sir Thomas More’s … Continue reading

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Answers To “Why Is A Raven Like A Writing Desk?”

In Chapter 7 of Lewis Carroll’s Alice Adventures in Wonderland, the Mad Hatter asked this unanswered riddle, “Why is a raven like a writing desk?” Several readers were perplexed (and I was one of them) and Carroll had continuously received letters requesting … Continue reading

Posted in Humor, Language, Literature, Oddities, Puzzles | Tagged , , , | 38 Comments