Two metres apart

Social distancing measures are in place pretty much everywhere. They have been instituted to reduce the possibility of infection. No contact, no contagion. If we don’t share the same space, we won’t get infected. We won’t get assassinated either. It may be argued that the 2-metre rule could have saved Julius Caesar’s life. Since MarchContinue reading “Two metres apart”

The ancient lover of laughter

There are few better ways to die than by and through laughter. People have been dying of laughter since at least the 5th century BC, when the Greek painter Zeuxis reportedly died laughing at his Portrait of Aphrodite As a Crone. There is no reason to doubt that humans have been telling jokes since theContinue reading “The ancient lover of laughter”

A medieval ‘knock-knock’ joke

The meta-literary mock legend of St Nemo is the result of one of the more sophisticated linguistic jokes in the medieval period. The Latin indefinite pronoun┬ánemo means ‘no one’ and is found, naturally, in many medieval texts. In the Bible, we are told that ‘no one is accepted as a prophet in his own country’Continue reading “A medieval ‘knock-knock’ joke”