Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Wednesday, 10 June 2020

Prince Philip at 99

Today is the 99th birthday of Prince Philip, and this is to express loyal greetings and good wishes to him on this day.

A life that covers 99 years, and one in so prominent a position, is one full of experiences of all kinds. It has often been seen difficult times from his earliest years and bereavement and uncertainty have been significant events along the journey. It has also been a life of duty to his wife and her family, in support of Crown and Commonwealth - and at times there have been those too quick to find fault or display pettiness about him. In that he shares much with Prince Albert in the nineteenth century, and indeed virtually all male consorts of Queens regnant here and abroad. To have achieved so much in initiatives alongside his formal role and to have done it with his distinctive dry humour is no inconsiderable achievement in the historical long term, let alone in the immediacy of one life.

Many happy returns and here’s to the centenary birthday next year!

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