Tag: Weird

Lives of the Necromancers: Put Your Hand Inside the Puppet Head

Lives of the Necromancers: Put Your Hand Inside the Puppet Head

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northcote20portrait20-20col1More from Lives of the Necromancers (1834) by William Godwin. See Orpheus for an introduction to Godwin and the book.

Alexander the Paphlagonian

“At about the same time with Apuleius (note: the Numidian writer in Latin, circa 124 – 170 AD) lived Alexander the Paphlagonian, of whom so extraordinary an account is transmitted to us by Lucian (note: also alive during the events he recorded, circa 125 – 180 AD). He was a native of an obscure town, called Abanotica, but was endowed with all that ingenuity and cunning which enables men most effectually to impose upon their fellow-creatures. He was tall of stature, of an impressive aspect, a fair complexion, eyes that sparkled with an awe-commanding fire as if informed by some divinity, and a voice to the last degree powerful and melodious. To these he added the graces of carriage and attire. Being born to none of…

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Lives of the Necromancers: Silly cow

Lives of the Necromancers: Silly cow

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northcote20portrait20-20col1More from Lives of the Necromancers (1834) by William Godwin. See Orpheus for an introduction to Godwin and the book.

John Fian

Although this anecdote is ridiculous, it comes from the late 16th century witch hunt period so it has a predictably brutal ending. John Fian was a young schoolmaster from Tranent, near Edinburgh. He was one of a number of unfortunate people tortured over accusations of witchcraft. Godwin writes that Fian was “tortured by means of a rope strongly twisted around his head, and by the boots.” The boots were actually cruder than they sound, usually just a kind of vice designed to crush the feet and lower legs. Even people who survived the torture were usually crippled.

“He told of a young girl, the sister of one of his scholars, with whom he had been deeply enamoured. He had proposed to the boy to bring him three hairs…

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Lives of the Necromancers: Orpheus

Lives of the Necromancers: Orpheus

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northcote20portrait20-20col1 William Godwin.

Some interesting stuff from Lives of the Necromancers (1834) by William Godwin, the proto-anarchist and father of Mary “Frankenstein” Shelley, nee Godwin. Well, interesting if you’re into necromancers anyway. And who isn’t interested in necromancers? Nobody I want to hang out with, is the answer.

William Godwin also wrote a novel called St. Leon (1799), about a man who artificially attains immortality. Without taking anything away from Mary– she was undoubtedly the most talented of the famous four who played at writing stories near Lake Geneva in 1816, not to mention being only eighteen years old at the time– it’s obvious that her super cool father with his love of fringe science and radical politics was a big influence on her. Godwin’s wife and Mary’s mother was the feminist Mary Wollstonecraft, though Mary senior sadly died of septicaemia shortly after giving birth and so never knew her daughter…

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“Good-bye, dead-wide Dick!”

“Good-bye, dead-wide Dick!”

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HotspurDeadWideDick The Hotspur, October 1944. “GOOD-BYE, DEAD-WIDE DICK!”

Two accidental forays into surrealism by British boys’ paper The Hotspur, which amazingly lasted until 1981. I say amazingly, although on the other hand there were lots of British colonial era things that inexplicably carried on into the 1980s and beyond. Not to mention that The Hotspur‘s first issue had on its cover a plane-sized eagle attacking an actual aeroplane, and came with a free “Black Cloth mask” for no immediately apparent reason, so they definitely started as they meant to go on.

The cover above is almost certainly not referring to the fact that this football player has a feature likely to make him popular with the ladies and about 10% of the gentlemen, but instead that he scores goals by kicking unexpectedly wide. As for how and why somebody decided to counter this tactic by installing a gung ho…

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Milking 2013 posts one last time

Milking 2013 posts one last time

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SocialistMotherlandApart from my regulars and subscribers (hello, and thanks) most of this blog’s visitors in 2013 were a strange– and strangely consistent– rainbow of people from Reddit, Something Awful, Buzzfeed, Open Culture, Facebook and Twitter. It’s like the bridge of the Enterprise in here, or a Communist propaganda poster from the 1960s. I may cry.

As seen in the slideshow below, the top posts of the year were mainly to do with bumhole activities chez Joyce, Japanese women making arguably ill-advised forays into putting odd things in various orifices, weird old engravings, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, medieval moralising, gay animals, and squirrels on drugs. Just relax. All these things are normal, here. And if you ever meet me in real life, try not to be too scared. Honestly I don’t even know how somebody as incredibly square as I am ended up with a…

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