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.

Tuesday, 9 February 2021

Weather Report

The Mail Online has an interesting report about the transcription of a Bristol based account of the weather at the height - or depth - of the ‘Little Ice Age’ of 1560-1630. The writer noted extreme weather conditions and associated disasters including the Severn tsunami of 1607. The risk of hunger or famine as a result of adverse weather was never that far away.

Brightstowe (Bristol)
Map of Bristol by Braun and Hogenberg c.1582

Image: The Swan Gallery 

Our current awareness of climate change has proved a valuable stimulus to research into past climate events. They are no longer seen as incidental observations unrelated to physical or socio - economic trends. We can now use recorded evidence both to reconstruct life in the past in even more of its variety and to draw information for ourselves about changing weather patterns.

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