January 30, 2007

R.I.P. Charles Stuart


On this day in 1649, Charles I, King of England, Scotland and Ireland was murdered by Parliament at Whitehall.

Perhaps my very favorite Sherlock Holmes story is "The Musgrave Ritual," not because it is particularly exciting or devious, but because its subject matter ties directly back to this event:

'Whose was it?'
"'His who is gone.'
"'Who shall have it?'
"'He who will come.'
"'Where was the sun?'
"'Over the oak.'
"'Where was the shadow?'
"'Under the elm.'
"How was it stepped?'
"'North by ten and by ten, east by five and by five, south by two and by two, west by one and by one, and so under.'
"'What shall we give for it?'
"'All that is ours.'
"'Why should we give it?'
"'For the sake of the trust.'

No spoilers here, but once you read the story, you'll see the connection. It gives me the chills.

(Okay, so I'm a Cavalier sympathizer. But you probably knew that already.)

UPDATE: Here's a link to the Society of King Charles the Martyr. Charles was canonized at the Restoration for his sacrifice made on behalf of the Church of England, but lost his status during the reign of Queen Victoria. The Society was founded in 1894 in order to preserve the rememberance of Charles' day of martyrdom and to urge the reinsertion of his Feast Day into the Book of Common Prayer.

Posted by Robert at January 30, 2007 01:42 PM | TrackBack

Cavaliers? You? I didn't realize you supported UVA. I have to say I'm a bit taken aback by that, actually.

Posted by: rp at January 30, 2007 01:54 PM

Oh, I used to bash the Groovy-UVies pretty heartily. (All the little Hoos in Hoo-ville went, "Boo, hoo, hoo." Etc., etc.)

These days, not so much. What's made me more amiable? Three words: "In-state tuition."

Posted by: Robbo the LB at January 30, 2007 03:00 PM

Is "in-state" one word or two?

Posted by: rp at January 30, 2007 03:50 PM

If you believe Bill Gates, it's one. But I've always felt that a hyphen between two words does not constitute a permanent union, but merely a temporary arrangement and therefore does not strip either of them of their automony.

Posted by: Robbo the LB at January 30, 2007 03:57 PM

IIRC, Britian hasn't had much success with kings named Charles. I wonder why Elizabeth II used the name.

Posted by: rbj at January 31, 2007 09:30 AM

I think Charles II was generally successful, except at producing legitimate heirs, but in the long run that worked out pretty well. He got Louis XIV to bribe him, what could be better than living off French taxes. One of his mistresses, Nell Gywn, was threatened by an anti-papist mob, but she told them "Good people, I am the Protestant Whore." Excellent taste in women.

John is a name they really don't want to reuse and haven't. Oddly, no Thomas or David, and just 1 Stephen. Richard is Right Out.

I suppose the P of W could assume the throne as Phillip, Arthur, or George VII. Several Prince Arthur's never made it to the throne, IIRC. John's son, and Henry VIII's older brother, whose birth was in a Final Jeopardy clue last week.

Posted by: Ralph L. at February 4, 2007 08:51 AM