Winchester is the centre of English civilisation

Sez Lucio Vicente López in Recuerdos de viaje (1881). This is apparently in part due to the Normans having invaded without women, thus enabling the maintenance of The Saxon Character. He’s wrong. Winchester is suspiciously continental, while Romsey is Ethelflaeda, who sang psalms while skinny-dipping in the Test, and lithe & lusty hooligans.
Empty car park, Romsey.

Did the house that Jack built come from Spain?

Or, How to cook the old lady who swallowed a fly without stooping to cannibalism. Cumulative songs (and monstrous nested stuffing recipes) in Quixote and Estebanillo González, with the grossest video you’ll see today.

Cruikshank, The progress of passion (1792).

Name that novel

Adelante: ‘Ice e-skating,’ said Marta.‘Ice skating,’ said Domingo.‘Ice e-skating.’‘No, no. No e. Ice skating. Try it again.’Marta hesitated.‘Go on!’‘Ice es-kating,’ she said, with deliberation.Domingo smiled. ‘Don’t worry about it. It’s a common problem for Spaniards. Two consonants together causes a difficulty. I have conquered this issue after a long time. But you are unlikely to…


The cobbler to his last and the gunner to his linstock (equivalents), but even Spanish is a struggle.

La riqueza de nuestro léxico. Wait a minute.

Héctor G. Barnés has entered the fight against the barbarian invaders, estas palabras que por desidia o contaminación utilizamos en inglés cuando buenamente podríamos emplear palabras de nuestro idioma. No se trata tanto de preservar la lengua –afortunadamente, el español se encuentra en una situación privilegiada a nivel global– como de preservar la riqueza de…

Speech elevator

The Instituto Cervantes runs courses explaining to Spanish speakers how to recycle themselves as teachers in the Anglosphere: “Lo más importante es no lanzarse a la aventura de la docencia sin más, porque no basta con ser nativo”, apunta Gemma Belmonte, profesora de español en el Cervantes londinense. Además de aprender a planificar una clase,…