Islamic green used to stigmatise Spanish convict labour?

Joseph Townsend, A Journey Through Spain in the Years 1786 and 1787 (1791): When we drew near to Barcelona, we had to cross a river [ie the Besòs], in which we counted fifty felons, clothed in green, and employed in clearing the channel, whilst sentinels stationed at convenient distances prevented their escape. It is curious…

Christmas dinner in church

I know where I should be grazing this Christmas, thanks to the Archbishop of York: We are so lucky in this country to have churches that are nearer our homes than most supermarkets. I encourage you to take advantage of that this Christmas. Unfortunately there’s no way he can be referring to the Queen’s churches,…

Beercelona 2

Is a 5-a-side team in Cambridge. Real Madras is still around, but whatever happened to Orange Flavoured Bicycle Sheds?


… is how it always seems to end up in Word. In the New Year normality will reassert itself in the shape of l’Estatut or, more probably, nothing.


Louis Moritz (source (.doc)) was an Alsatian who settled in Barcelona in 1851 and, two years later, started working for a local brewer, Ernest Ganivet. In 1856 he started his own business, and in 1859 Luis Moritz y Compañía bought Joan Maurer’s brewery at the Santa Madrona gate. In 1864 a new brewery was opened…

Afghan national anthem

Abdul Bari Jahani told IWPR, “This is in fact not a poem, but a list of tribes.” The old Yugoslav one worked on the same basis, with each republic having a section of its own anthem included, which is why it took hours to play at football matches.

La Vanguardia misreports S&P on the Estatut

La Vanguardia really does struggle at times. Here‘s roughly what Juan de la Mota of S&P said yesterday: El consejero delegado de la entidad en España, Juan de la Mota, explicó hoy en rueda de prensa que, aunque todavía quedan muchos detalles por definir, la calidad crediticia de las autonomías debería salir beneficiada de estos…

Chinese liberation music

I am told that, during a recent Shanghai performance of The Messiah, the tenors got confused and lost during the chorus “Let us break our bonds asunder,” presumably for fear they’d be despised and rejected thereafter.

WTF is Icum Spicome?

I’ve a little bottle in my brisses pocket, which I call Icum Spicome, Spinto of Spain Which brings dead men to life again Here Jack take a sup out of my little bottle And let it run down thy throttle Arise and fight for ten thousand.