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DESCRIPTION: This 'atlas' was the work of a family of Catalonian Jews who worked in Majorca at the end of the 14th century and was commissioned by Charles V of France at a time when the reputation of the Catalan chart makers was at its peak.
The title of the Atlas shows clearly the spirit in which it was executed and its content: Mappamundi, that is to say, image of the world and of the regions which are on the earth and of the various kinds of peoples which inhabit it. Today the original Catalan Atlas can be found in the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris, and has now assumed the form of seven loose wooden panels of which five inside ones bear one half of a sheet of the Atlas on each side, while the two outer ones consist of one side that bears a half sheet of the Atlas and one half of the binding on the other side.a€?The first of the two preliminary sheets deals with the days of the month from the first to the thirtieth.
The Catalan Atlas is actually a world map built up around a portolan chart, thus combining aspects of the nautical chart by employing loxodromes and coastal detail with the medieval mappaemundi exemplified by its legends and illustrations.
We know in unusual detail the circumstances in which the Catalan Atlas of 1375 (the date of the calendar which accompanies it) was produced and the career of the cartographer who compiled it. The patrons of Cresques, King Peter III of Aragon and his son, in addition to their scientific interests, were keenly interested in reports of Eastern lands, in relation to their forward economic policy, and were at special pains to secure manuscript copies of Marco Polo's Description of the World, the travels of Odoric of Pordenone Description of Eastern Regions and, what may surprise the modern reader, the Voiage of Sir John Mandeville. In the interior the position, extent, chief divisions, towns and rivers of China and the Mongol Empire are approximately represented.
On the southern portion of the Cathay coast, the general uniformity of the coast is broken by three bays, and it is significant that these are associated with three great ports, Zayton [near Changchow], Cansay [Hangchow, better known in medieval records as Quinsay ] and Cincolam [Canton]. Quite a number of harbors are indicated on the eastern coast of India, a few of them still identifiable, while a sailing junk testifies to trading activity, especially with the island of Iana (?), which is here associated with the legendary isle of the Amazons (regio femarum [sic]) and symbolized by its queen.
In mainland India, King Stephen has been represented: the text beside him indicates that this Christian ruler is a€?looking towards the town of Butifilis,a€? Marco Polo's kingdom of Mutifilis.
The people of Gog and Magog following their monarch, bearing banners with the emblem of the devil, detail of the map of Asia. Sources other than those embodied in Polo have also been used for the portion of the Indian Ocean included in the map. If the map is stripped of its legends and drawings of the older tradition, it is apparent that the main interest of the compiler is concentrated in a central strip across Asia. In the west is the Organci [Oxus] river shown, as on most contemporary maps, flowing into the Caspian, and alongside it the early stages of the traditionally used overland route, from Urganj [the medieval Khiva] through Bokhara and Samarcand to the sources of the river in the mountains of Amol, on the eastern limits of Persia. This description, with several omissions, was in outline the route followed by Maffeo and Nicolo Polo (Marco Polo's father and uncle) on their journey to the Great Khan's court. Scarcely less valuable, and certainly of special interest for the student of geographical theory, are the Catalan speculations concerning the unexplored territories of the earth. Hardly any place on the west coast of Africa is identified only one name, perhaps a mythical spot, is found south of Cape Bojador in the former Spanish Sahara, but we are told that Africa, land of ivory, starts at this point and that by traveling due south one reaches Ethiopia. East of the Sultan of Mali appears the King of Organa, in turban and blue dress, holding an oriental sword and a shield.
In northeast Africa, a knowledge of the Nile valley as far south as Dongala, where there was a Catholic mission early in the 14th century, is apparent. On one matter, however, the mapmaker Cresques could hardly refrain from speculating, for the following reason: land exploration had, for a long time now, outrun oceanic discovery, and so, concerning Africa, much more was known of the Sudan by the end of the 14th century than was known of the oceanic fringe area in the same latitudes.
In Asia the Red Sea stands out, being shown as red, a characteristic that derives, we are told less from the color of the water than from that of the sea bed. Moslem traders from cities along the Barbary Coast of North Africa began to cross the Sahara in the Middle Ages in an effort to bring back gold, rumored to be in great supply in the Sudan. Within the means of cartographic representations on this Atlas there appears to be no specialities, those symbols and other graphics used by Cresques correspond to those commonly used in the Middle Ages. The compiler of the prototype used by Cresques for the Catalan Atlas had recourse to different, sometimes even contradictory sources. In summary, the merit of the Catalan Atlas lay in the skill with which Cresques employed the best available contemporary sources to modify the traditional world picture, never proceeding further than the evidence warranted. Today the original Catalan Atlas can be found in the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris, and has now assumed the form of seven loose wooden panels of which five inside ones bear one half of a sheet of the Atlas on each side, while the two outer ones consist of one side that bears a half sheet of the Atlas and one half of the binding on the other side.The first of the two preliminary sheets deals with the days of the month from the first to the thirtieth. As a response to this interest, Cresques extended his chart to include all that was then known of Asia, notably from Marco Polo's narrative. This town [Beijing] has an extent of 24 miles, is surrounded by a very thick outer wall and has a square ground plan. The description emphasizes the richness and urbanity of the Chinese capital at the edge of the civilized world.
To the north is Catayo, the Great Khan and his capital of Chanbaleth; to the south Manji, with its great cities of Zayton and Cansay. What began as a sideline business selling polished metal mirrors to pilgrims in Germany (to capture holy light) evolved into an enterprise that altered the course of art, religion, politics and industry: Johannes Gutenberga€™s movable type and printing press. We judge ourselves by our noblest acts and best intentions, but we are judged by our last worst act. There are 10,000 species of ants, and for several million years they have coved the earth, except Antarctica [no pun intended]. Credit has existed globally since the early days of trading and mercantilism, but it wasna€™t until the 1920s that oil companies issued a physical card to repeat customers who purchased fuel for their new-fangled automobiles.
Therea€™s nothing so hollow as the laugh of the person who intended to tell the story himself. CHALLENGE #111: Why is the numeric keypad on a computer (7-8-9 at the top) upside-down from the numeric keypad on phones (1-2-3 on top)? English belongs to the very large Indo-European language family [Germanic, Baltic, Slavic, Celtic, Latin, Hellenic, Iranian, Sanskrit et alia, which led to Polish, Welsh, French, Greek, Kurdish, Punjabi, and English, to name a few]. The real test of character comes when doing the right thing may not be in our self-interest. In the past 5,000 years the human genetic code changed 100 times faster than it had in any prevous period. In the 1880s, Samuel Augustus Maverick was a Texas cattleman who refused to brand his cattle, seeing it as cruel. CHALLENGE #111 was: Why is the numeric keypad on a computer (7-8-9 at the top) upside-down from the numeric keypad on phones (1-2-3 on top)?
Researchers gave cash to experimental subjects who were instructed either to spend it on themselves or on others. BIG Q #26: Pericles argued in his Funeral Oration that democracy stimulates excellence because all citizens are stakeholders with public responsibilities. When intensive-care units at Michigan hospitals followed a 5-step checklist for how to insert intravenous lines in patients, infections were virtually eliminated, saving the hospitals $175 million over 18 months.
The peace symbol began as the emblem of the British anti-nuclear movement 50 years ago on Good Friday: a combination of the semaphore positions for N and D [Nuclear Disarmament] within a circle [the earth].
CHALLENGE #114: He was a fighter who was obsessed with boxing and he abused drink and drugs. BIG Q #27: Since poverty is deeper among children than the elderly, why does public spending on the elderly vastly outstrip spending on the young?
E-mail and Web searches consume 1.5% of the nationa€™s electricity last year, and if current trends continue, by 2010 the power bill to run a computer over its lifetime will surpass the cost of buying the machine. Biologically speaking, humans have changed little in the 100,000 years [or 3,000 generations] since modern humans emerged on the African savanna--not enough time for serious adjustments. Rembrandt was a master of chiaroscuro (kee-ahr-uh-SKYOOR-oh), the use of contrasts of light and shade to enhance the depiction of character and for general dramatic effect.
CHALLENGE #114 was: He was a fighter who was obsessed with boxing and he abused drink and drugs. CHALLENGE #115: What proportion of the cells in your body are not actually yours but belong to foreign organisms? BIG Q #28: Why do girls, on average, lead boys for all their years in school, only to fall behind in the workplace? Only 11% of CEOs of top 500 companies have an Ivy League degree, but 20% of the top 60 women in Forbes a€?most powerful womena€? list did. The hormone oxytocin is naturally released in brain after a 20-second hug from a partner, triggering the braina€™s trust circuits.
CHALLENGE #115 was: What proportion of the cells in your body are not actually yours but belong to foreign organisms? CHALLENGE #116: A westerner and an easterner who each changed the world, but didna€™t want their names used to identify a religion--to no avail. Featured Quote: a€?The truth of the matter,a€? is that a€?we havena€™t sacrificed one darn bit in this war, not one.
BIG Q #29: Why are the most powerful people in the world old white men and pretty young women? When lima bean plants are attacked by spider mites, they release volatile chemicals that summon another species of mites to attack the spider mites. Funeral directors promote embalming: replacing body fluids with formaldehyde, a carcinogen that eventually leaches into the environment when the buried body decays [800,000 gallons annually]. In 2001, President Bush exempted some 3,500 plants that spew toxic chemicals from the Right-To-Know law.
Consultants get paid up to $500,000 to name a drug, and insist that letters are imbued with psychological meaning: P, T, and K, they claim, convey effectiveness. CHALLENGE #116 was: A westerner and an easterner who each changed the world, but didna€™t want their names used to identify a religion--to no avail. CHALLENGE #117: His father a€?bluffeda€? his way into law school using a faked transcript, and went on to finish first in his class and become a successful labor lawyer.
Spoken language is instinctual, the brain collects the phonemes and abstracts the rules from what it hears, but written language must be taught.
Busha€™s tax cuts for the rich have reduced annual tax revenue avaiable for public needs by $300 Billion each year. CHALLENGE #117 was: His father a€?bluffeda€? his way into law school using a faked transcript, and went on to finish first in his class and become a successful labor lawyer.
FACTOID: Unusual English spelling shows the way the words were pronounced 100s of years ago. Chinoiserie (sheen-WAH-zuh-ree) is a style of ornamentation using motifs identified as Chinese. CHALLENGE # 118 was: If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there, does it make a sound?
CHALLENGE #119: Which a€?booka€™ won the Pulitzer Prize for literature and drama, in successive years? What we knew by 1990 about the 1940 dinner was published in Irregular Memories of the a€™Thirties. In this the first of the BSJa€™s revived Christmas Annuals (a pleasant custom begun by Edgar W. January 30, 1940, was a golden evening, an evening of a€?entertainment and fantasya€? as Edgar W. Finally, after a Great Hiatus of nearly four years, plans were made a€” than to the imminent publication of 221B: Studies in Sherlock Holmes a€” for another BSI Annual Dinner, the first since 1936. I had been planning to take a two weeks' holiday in the south toward the end of the month, but in view of this epic occasion, I have now changed my plans, and shall be leaving on January 12, and returning on the 29th. Please inform the undersigned promptly of your intention to attend so that the Gasogene and the Tantalus may make accurate plans.
And on January 30, 1940, the Baker Street Irregulars gathered for their annual dinner once more. The first order of business under the Constitution was the drinking of the canonical toasts.
There is also extant a letter from Steele to Vincent Starrett about this drawing, quoted in the previously cited unpublished memoir by Steelea€™s son Robert: a€?I had an absurdly hard struggle with my Sherlock. This was also the first time the Baker Street Irregulars met at the Murray Hill Hotel, where the BSI dinners would continue to be held a€” cocktails in Parlor F, dinner and program in Parlor G a€” until the New York landmark was finally torn down in the late a€™Forties, to be great regret of many sentimental people.
The 1940 dinner might not have included every Irregular of that era with whom one would wish to dine, but it was a fine list nonetheless. Denis Conan Doyle was the eldest son of Sir Arthura€™s second marriage (his mother, Lady Conan Doyle, would pass away later in the year), and Trustee of a very active literary Estate indeed.
He went on to describe how, in the lore of the Irregulars, Doyle is pictured as a struggling young physician, delighted at the chance to a€?peddlea€? the cases his friend Dr.
Certainly one would love to have been a fly on the wall that night, or, even better, archy the cockroach darting among the drinks on the table, to hear Denisa€™s charming discourse, and all the other scholarship and tomfoolery that transpired that night, the first BSI dinner in four long years. Meanwhile, and with 221B still rolling off the presses, I am sending you a first very rough-and-ready copy of the Gazetteer which you have egged me on, from time to time, to write.
I hope things are going well for you, and again let me say that your absence was a matter of very genuine regret indeed to all of us who look to you as mentor and guide -- to say nothing of your status as sponsor and editor of the Book of the Day.
Re the Gazetteer: I'm inclined to agree with you that it might be extended to advantage by a listing of the more important clubs and restaurants, etc. I imagine we should not too often bring out a volume of ana; the public might easily tire of us. In his essay in Irregular Memories of the 'Thirties discussing this first BSI anthol-ogy of Writings About the Writings, neither Robert G.
So it should be, from someone who (born 1915) had by 1990 long been one of the nationa€™s foremost authorities on Victorian literature and culture.
I know of no other such study as the interesting one you suggest, although it is perhaps odd that the idea did not earlier explode in the skull of some devoted Sherlockian.
It seems to me more than likely that Doyle wrote that scene in His Last Bow quite deliberately, knowing it for what it was - a friendly para-phrase of the parting between Johnson and Boswell; although it may of course have been subconscious.
You have chosen a delightful subject for your thesis; and you will pardon me if I hope that you will treat it not too seriously, but with a touch of humor. I am leaving Chicago inside of a week, I think, for a voyage around the world; so in closing I must wish you - in my absence - all good luck in your efforts. A few years later, an editor was interested in publishing the essay a€” the best of all possible editors for Sherlockian work, Vincent Starrett himself. The quotation is from Christopher Morleya€™s a€?Notes on Baker Streeta€? in the Saturday Review of Literature, January 28, 1939, not from any letter Starrett received from him. This independent Sherlock Holmes society had been founded in New York in 1935 by Richard W. Since Morleya€™s letter of December 23, 2939, below was unavailable for Irregular Memories of the a€™Thirties, this reference in Edgar W.
A copy of Morleya€™s letter to Smith below went to Vincent Starrett in Chicago, with the handwritten note: a€?Merry Christmas, Vincenzio. When I was in Chicago a week ago I learned from Vincent Starrett that his book 221-B is actually to be published on January 30. Since Christ Cella's place on 45 Street, where we used to hold meetings, has been modernized and the old upstairs room there no longer exists (he has only a not very attractive cellarage; which makes me think of The Fiend of the Cooperage; do you know it?) I am wondering if the Murray Hill Hotel would not be a singularly pleasant place for the meeting? You yourself would, I hope, perhaps feel inclined to present a proceeding of some sort; I mean a few remarks on the Obliquity of the Ecliptic, or whatever may be momently on your mind.
Just for the fun of starting trouble, I am sending a copy of this both to Starrett and to Harold Latham of Macmillan; who will I'm sure see to it that each convive gets a presentation copy of the Book. I hope I may assume that like Peterson the commissionaire, or No, it was Henry Baker, you are carrying a white goose and walking with a slight stagger. Beginning in 1945, Titular Investitures were conferred at the annual dinners to denote membership in the BSI. That it was the first one Smith prepared is indicated by a letter to Christopher Morley dated three days later (November as the month, in Irregular Memories of the a€™Thirties, p. There are forty-eight names on the somewhat woolly list, below, and they bear some analysis, following Miss Mouillerata€™s cover letter.
The other names on Smitha€™s list are familiar ones, though some of them are surprises to see here.
Members by 1935, according to Morley's list that year: Ronald Mansbridge, Harrison Martland, John Sterling, Lawrence Williams. Ones who came into the BSI at the 1940 dinner: John Connolly, Peter Greig, Howard Haycraft, James Keddie (his son James Jr. A few more details about some of these Irregulars of the a€™30s and a€™40s can be provided now, for the record. Of other names on this list, Harold Latham was, as we have seen, Trade Editor at the Macmillan Company responsible for publishing 221B: Studies in Sherlock Holmes.
This was a 1940 collection of essays by Vincent Starrett, published by Random House, with an a€?Unconventional Indexa€? by Christopher Morley.
More serious still, two more toasts stipulated by our Constitutional ar-rangements are absent altogether, and missing ever since.
As to The Second Most Dangerous Man: The query about his identity was a€” as Bill Hall will tell you a€” the original, first, quickie, abbreviated examination for eligibility to membership in the pre-natal Baker Street club. Resting imposingly on the long table at which the BSI dined on January 30, 1940, was an a€?orthodox coal-scuttle,a€? authentically Victorian, which James P. The coal box was an ornament, and in it were stored such details of fireside comfort as slippers, unread magazines and so forth.
Although Keddie was a contributor to 221B: Studies in Sherlock Holmes, he came close to missing the 1940 dinner until Morley unearthed his address barely ten days before.
Because of money, and his second wifea€™s health, Vincent Starrett never made it back to New York for a BSI dinner after the one in 1934. Bill Halla€™s copy bears the affectionate raspberry Christopher Morley often sent his old frienda€™s way. It also bears the notation a€?$5.00 casha€? which was probably the true cost of the evening. The pattern followed by the BSI for quite a few years thereafter, of oysters (a€?shall the world be overrun bya€?), pea soup (as in London fog), curried chicken (minus one ingredient as served in a€?Silver Blazea€?), and a sweet, was set by Christopher Morley whose handwritten draft of the printed menu has survived.
The quotation from this letter, taken from an article by the artista€™s son, was incomplete.
Meanwhile, Starrett was already building a new Sherlock Holmes collection, with a big start in August 1940 from Logan Clendening. When this was written in 1990, the hope was that Sir Arthur Conan Doylea€™s sur-viving child, Dame Jean, might come to New York for a BSI dinner.
All this within your ear; but the circumstances being what they are, you will understand why I can't be any place but Reno on January 30. I could and would, of course, if the dinner were postponed, keep you posted as to developments, and the probable time I should be free to make a New York visit.
My brother Felix has a subtle scheme which he will bring direct from the State Department in Washington. The errata slip in 221B, as by Jane Nightwork, reads: a€?In the unavoidable absence of the Editor, a volunteer hand must call attention to the curious incident of what the Proofreader did in the night-time. Everybody is too pooped this morning to be able to give you any intelligible report but I must let you know at once that the evening was a grand success in every way.
The only sadness is that I intended to have a copy signed for you by all those present, and in the general uproar this did not get done. Since you seem not to have heard the news, I am sending this by pony express so that you may know at once that the Irregulars met, feasted, d---k, and thought of you.
Denis Conan Doyle made a neat little address in which he stuck to the tradition of the Irregulars and told us about his father's acquaintance with Holmes. Of course Christopher himself in person (but he WAS a moving picture!) was the glowing heart of the nebulae.
And, by the way, I think having vindicated Watson in the matter of the coal scuttle, it now behooves me to vindicate him in the Persian Slipper. BOOKS ALIVE: Man, oh man, WHAT a title, and doubly good for your book because none has a greater faculty for bringing books ALIVE than you. I was glad to get your note of February 27th, and to learn from it that you may be coming back East soon. Since the first draft of the Gazetteer, I have added about 150 more names - still without resorting to bars or theatres - but more important, I have fallen in with Dr. Who the members were of the Irene Adler Division with which Christopher Morley and other Irregulars convened immediately following the BSI dinner in New York is a mystery, however. For many years, it was believed that BSI dinner photographs commenced after World War II, with the one of the 1946 dinner.
So it was a surprise when James Keddiea€™s letter above referred to a dinner photo, and a thrill when a print turned up in the hands of Mary Hazard, daughter-in-law of the late Irregular whose it had been: Harry Hazard, a solver of the Sherlock Holmes Crossword in 1934. But to confound us, in the photograph are at least two men whose names are not in Smitha€™s minutes: William C. None of the seven surviving copies of 221B I have seen bears all the signatures of everyone we can say was at the dinner. Comparing signatures in one copy of 221B after another makes for further confusion Some men seem to have stayed glued to their seats throughout the signing session, as the copies of Starretta€™s book made their way around the table, while others seem to have gotten up and roamed around the room, signing one copy here, another copy there. Three particular signatures appear as a trio in one copy after another a€” James Keddie, Edgar W.
Bill Vande Water has picked up where Harry Hazard left off, and carried on with his typical valiant job of assigning names to faces, but a few remain unidentified. The photograph a€” Ia€™ve been having enormous fun, showing my friends what I looked like nearly sixty years ago. I was also given a bit of a nudge by Archie Macdonell, who founded the first Sherlock Holmes Society in England in June 1934. I remember David Randall, and discussion of the cash value of certain Sherlock Holmes first editions. The man who got me started in all this Sherlock Holmes stuff was not present at the dinner. King Charles requested this map from Peter of Aragon, patron of the best Majorcan mapmaker of the time: Abraham Cresques. Originally the Catalan Atlas consisted of six large wooden panels that were covered with parchment on one side. To the right, from top to bottom, is a diagram of the tides; another lists the movable feasts, and a third drawing represents a blood-letting figure.
The result is that the Atlas represents a transitionary step towards the world maps developed later during the Renaissance, especially by its extensive application of contemporary geographical knowledge and ambitious scope.
Although the sailors were used to plainer charts whose importance lay principally in their utility and accuracy, even ordinary marine charts begin to follow the Catalan tradition with regards to their use of standardized color patterns. When in 1381 the envoy of the French king asked King Peter of Aragon for a copy of the latest world map (proof in itself that the reputation of the Catalan school had been widely recognized) he was given this example, which has been preserved in Paris ever since. For the first time in medieval cartography this continent assumed a recognizable form, with one or two notable exceptions. From west to east, the main divisions of the Mongol territory include the Empire of Sarra [the Kipchak Khanate], the Empire of Medeia [the Chagtai Khanate of the middle], and the suzerain empire of the Great Khan, Catayo [China].
Each side has a length of six miles, the wall is 20 paces high and lo paces thick, has 12 gateways and a large tower, in which hangs a great bell, which rings at the hour of first sleep or earlier. The vertical waterway is the Grand Canal built by Kublai from Manji to Cambulac; below are the 7548 islands, rich in all manner of spicery, placed by Marco in the Sea of Chin. Of these, Canton is not mentioned by Marco Polo; it was, however, much frequented by Arab navigators and traders, upon whose reports the compiler was probably drawing.
Yule points out that Kao-li was the name given for Korea, and he therefore considers that the island Cresques depicts here represents confused notions about both the Korean peninsula and Japan; otherwise there is no obvious graphic reference or hint of Zipangu [Japan].
The first is difficult to explain; to make up for it the cartographer has inserted a great island of Jana [Java], which however was probably intended for Sumatra. The notion that there were Christian rulers east of the Islamic world stems largely from the legend of Prester John; also important, however, were the real Christian minorities in India and the fact that the tomb of Saint Thomas was thought to be in Mailapore, a suburb of Madras, the Mirapore of the map. And it sometimes happens though rarely, that the widow of the dead man throws herself into the flames,a€? a practice that recalls widow-burning (sutti) of India. There we are told that Satan came to his aid and helped him to imprison the Tartars Gog and Magog. The Persian Gulf, extending almost due west, has an outline similar to that on the Dulcert map, but is otherwise superior to any earlier map.
Herein lies a succession of physical features: mountains, rivers, lakes and towns with corrupt but recognizable forms of their medieval names as given in the narratives of the great travelers of the 13th century. It is also possible to discern traces of their second journey, accompanied by Marco, in which they employed the 'south road' of the silk route, and, except for a detour through Ormis at the bottom of the Persian Gulf, ran from Trebizond through Eri [Herat], Badakshan, and along the southern edge of the Tarim basin from Khotan to the city of Lop. Unlike many classical and fellow medieval scholars, the draftsman of Majorca showed praiseworthy restraint in this respect.
For here, as is often the case in other maps of the period, the cartographer compensated for the dearth of known geographical points by including historical facts. The delineation of the Nile river system is vitiated, however, by the conception that it flowed from a great lake in the Guinea region, Lacus Nili. As previously mentioned, the early draftsmen insisted upon cutting the continent short just beyond the limit of coastal knowledge, that is, in the vicinity of Cape Bojador.
It is cut in two by a land passage, a conventional allusion to Moses' miraculous crossing (Exodus, 14:2122). Between the Persian Gulf and the Caspian Sea appears the King of Tauris [Tabriz] and north of him Jani-Beg, ruler of the kingdom of the Golden Horde, who died in 1357.
Stories reached 14th century Europe of the splendor of Mansa Musa, ruler of the Mali and lord of Guinea, one of the reputed richest of the 'Negro Kingdoms' of the Sudan, whose pilgrimage to Mecca created a sensation in 1324.
However, there are great differences to be observed between what is labeled by some the a€?portolano sectiona€? (sheets 3 and 4, Europe and North Africa) and the rest of the map sheets.


The legendary Insula de Brazil, for example, which is found on various medieval maps of the North Atlantic and later gave its name to Brazil, is shown here twice, once west of Ireland and a second time farther south. Elsewhere, however, the weight of received opinion is still felt, as, for example, in the various islands with fabulous names; they cannot represent the Madeiran group, as these islands were discovered only in 1418-1419.
In the same spirit he removed from the map many of the traditional fables which had been accepted for centuries, and preferred to omit the northern and southern regions entirely, or to leave southern Africa blank rather than fill it with the anthropagi and other monsters which adorn the bulk of medieval maps. This contrasts strongly with the people of the islands farther east who are described as savages living naked, eating raw fish, and drinking sea water. In the better sets, the traditional flaws of plasma (burn-in) and LCD (limited viewing angle, weak blacks, weak fast motion) have been largely eliminated. In 1958, Dinera€™s Club launched the first card available for payment to general merchants: 27 participating NYC restaurants.
Kugel, an Orthodox Jew and author of a€?How to Read the Biblea€? says that there is essentially no evidence--archaeological, historical, cultural--for the events in the Torah. Koerner which he said depicts: a€?a horseman determinedly charging up what appears to be a steep and rough traila€?--representing his own political journey against steep odds and naysayers. The rope was not strong enough to carry them all; they decided 1 had to leave, or all would fall. According to the Energy Department, vampire gadgets account for about 25% of total residential electricity consumption in the U.S. Guppy submitted a fish to the British Museum that was already classified, but the name stuck [and the fish is still in a jar at the museum].
It revived the BSI after four years of dormancy, and ushered in a new era at the Murray Hill Hotel. Smith in the 1950s, but lost along the way), we begin by reprinting the account of the 1940 BSI dinner which appeared in Irregular Memories of the a€?Thirties. I didn't get a blue carbuncle, or, for that matter, did I even get a goose - but the day was a very pleasant one notwithstanding.
The date crept up very quickly, and when I finally reached Earle Walbridge yesterday, to look over the proofs of my section, I found a number of errors which it is now probably too late to correct, since Miss Prink at Macmillans tells me the binding has already started. There being no Goldini's or Marcini's available, the Murray Hill Hotel seems to meet the necessities next best. Anything I can do toward contributing to the preparations for the event I shall therefore have to undertake during the next two weeks.
The errors will probably be discernible only to the inner circle of the cognoscenti, and to those select few they can easily be explained away.
Shortly afterward, Edgar Smith a€” now the BSIa€™s Buttons, an extra-Constitutional office later to be superceded by the grander and rolling title of Buttons-cum-Commissionaire a€” sent out to those on the mailing list he had received from Christopher Morley some minutes of the annual dinner.
Revision of this constitutional requirement was, however, adopted, viva voce, and amendment to the Constitution hereby imposed, in that it is required hereafter that the toast shall not be canonical but Conanical.
Christopher Morley announced that the meeting, which was held as usual on a date at variance with the constitutional specification, had been called to celebrate the publication by Macmillans of 221B - a compilation of the writings of various members of the Society.
Vincent Starrett, whose unfortunate absence from the meeting can be compared only with the intolerable absence of Mrs. We are able to reproduce opposite the appropriately fanciful menu of the evening a€” it initiated a custom of oysters, pea soup, curried chicken, and a sweet which was observed by the BSI for many years (until, Robert G.
I tore up two or three attempts to do it from an old drawing, finally put on my old dressing gown and posed for it in the mirror.a€? And in a letter to Edgar Smith dated December 13, 1942, Christopher Morley wrote: a€?Would Freddy Steele like to design a menu card or would we use again the one he did years ago? Located at 41st and Park Avenue in Manhattana€™s Murray Hill district, the venerable hotel had seen better days by the time the Baker Street Irregulars arrived in 1940, but it captured and preserved the atmosphere of Victorian London far better than any other possibility in New York at that time (let alone today). In the United States on Estate business, making Sherlock Holmes publishing and radio and motion picture deals, and doing some lecturing on his fathera€™s Spiritualist cause as well, he had been invited to the BSI dinner by Christopher Morley. Smith, prominent Sherlockian and secretary, or a€?Buttons,a€? as he is called, of the Irregulars, informed this writer that the trouble began several years back, when Denis Conan Doyle attended a Baker Street dinner in New York. He added that it was probably the highest compliment ever paid in the history of literature. Hudson to sit down at a meeting of the Baker Street Irregulars and to count you among the missing.
It isn't as comprehensive a thing as I had thought it might be -- perhaps I should add hotels and clubs and restaurants to the list of countries, U.S.
Altick wrote his paper on Holmes and Johnson as an undergraduate at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pa. Certainly I shall be happy to have a copy of your paper - entire - and I trust that you are right in believing it to be publishable. I am sorry you had to wait so long for an acknowledgment of your MS - which I received, read, and enjoyed.
I had thought that he was sent to China by the Chicago Tribune as its Far Eastern correspondent. The photograph below is of the lobby, looking past the reception desk and grand staircase at the corridor which led to the private meeting rooms. Smith, eager for the BSI to convene again for what would be his first annual dinner, had suggested the Murray Hill Hotel as an appropriate place. We could have one of their private dining rooms, which are so entirely in the Baker Street manner and decor. I might tell you that the addresses may not be 100% correct, but I think you will find them O. Smith is about the busiest person on earth at the moment, although he has taken time out to read your new book BOOKS ALIVE which he thinks is excellent.
Warren Force, Harry Hazard, Harvey Officer, Allan Price, Harrison Reinke, Stuart Robinson, and Earle Walbridge. Since Smith was working from a list supplied by Morley a€” Woollcotta€™s name was on the 1935 list, but crossed off on the only copy surviving to be printed in the September 1960 Baker Street Journal a€” we must wonder about the legend of Woollcott cast out into utter darkness after crashing the 1934 dinner, and publishing his mocking account of it in The New Yorker.
In a letter to Morley on May 10, 1939, discussing the progress of 221B, Vincent Starrett mentioned that a€?Incidentally, Ia€™ve included tentatively Woollcotta€™s bit on the Gillette dinner in 1934, from the New Yorker, as a sort of pendant to Fred Steelea€™s contribution from the same journal, which mentions the dinner. It was not until 1945 that any of the original Pips a€” Gordon Knox Bell, Richard Clarke, Owen Frisbie, Norman Ward, and Frank Waters a€” began to attend the BSIa€™s dinners. Starrett later used the title for his bookmana€™s column in the Chicago Tribune, which appeared Sundays for some twenty-five years.
In the first place, they were declared no longer canonical but Conanical a€” Christopher Morleya€™s whimsical way of tipping his hat to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in his son Denisa€™s presence. When, in the course of luncheon at Christ Cellaa€™s or elsewhere, some acquaintance would hear about the Sherlock Holmes society and ask how to get in, he would be asked a€?Who was the Second Most Dangerous Man in London?a€? If he could answer that one, he might get asked others if anybody present wanted to ask them. That was getting late to make plans to attend, apologized Morley; but Keddie made it nonetheless. On the occasion of the 1940 dinner, however, the editor of 221B: Studies in Sherlock Holmes was not even in Chicago, a mere overnight run on the 20th Century Limited to New York. Smitha€™s minutes say that a€?The meeting voted simultaneously to send greetings and a fully autographed copy of the book to Mr. This meeting was held to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Sherlock Holmesa€™s first appearance in American ink (Lippincotta€™s Magazine, February 1890).a€? Not a great way to sell copies of the real reason for the 1940 dinner, Vincent Starretta€™s 221B: Studies in Sherlock Holmes a€” especially since lack of funds had forced Starrett to sell that superb collection of his the year before! Dame Jean Conan Doyle did not share her brothersa€™ antipathy toward the Baker Street Irregulars, and in fact was pleased to accept membership in 1991. Keddie, a publisher of his as well, at the company where he was vice-president, took it upon himself each year to write Starrett a report of the dinner. On January 30, barring accidents, I shall be four weeks along in a Reno residence of six, in an effort to procure a divorce which will enable me to marry Ray. Indoctrinated students will deduce that (by an innocent misunderstanding) a portion of this work was set from unrevised copy, and this first edition will remain identifiable by a number of irregularities, notably in Mr Edgar Smitha€™s valuable concordance.
However, it was signed by several at a most successful meeting of the Irene Adler division or Ladies' Auxiliary held immediately after the dinner. Copies of 221-B were distributed and autographed more or less by all present, and a jolly good time was H.
Now, as Holmes has pointed out, Curry is an excellent disguise for the taste of opium, and (you remember) would be the logical flavor to use in food into which opium was to be introduced. He said that his father had known Holmes very intimately, and he even went so far as to say that Holmes's mental processes had influenced his father's thinking. He also suggested that only Hitler could have written the impetuous and irresponsible letter which caused all the trouble. Julian Wolff, who made a couple of neat little maps of spots in the stories about a year ago (I asked him at the time to send copies to you), and he is doing a bang-up job with London, England, the Continent and the world - creations that will be well worth framing and hanging.
I had photostats made of it, and am sending you a copy herewith, in case you haven't seen it. And none have been found from 1941 through 1945, though some pictures were taken by others at the BSIa€™s special Trilogy Dinner at the Murray Hill Hotel on March 30, 1944.
Christopher Morley (still beardless at this time) is at the head of the table, in black tie, leaning to catch something Frederic Dorr Steele is saying to him.
Absent from all seven are the signatures of Elmer Davis, Malcolm Johnson, and Warren Jones, all of whose names are in Smitha€™s minutes. Smith took on the work of Buttons in January 1940, sending out dinner invitations to the rather casual list of members Christopher Morley provided, and preparing minutes afterward, it was all new to him. His name appears in Smitha€™s minutes, but his signature does not in any of the seven surviving copies of 221B.
Some names do not appear on either the 1935 or 1940 membership lists, and we will not see them again after this night.
Yet one man there a€” the man with the dapper mustache, raising a wine-glass in salute a€” is still in the ranks. Of course no one of my generation can forget the overwhelming, all-pervading atmosphere of the Depression, the atmosphere of fear, fear for onea€™s job, fear for all onea€™s friends, half of whom were out of work. My friend Basil Davenport, the one man I knew who literally lived in a garret, in the depths of the Depression, supporting himself by writing for that same Saturday Review of Literature a€” precariously, because the Saturday Review didna€™t always have the money to pay contributors. This form later was transformed into a block-book, in which each sheet formed a double page, the parchment itself serving as a hinge between each of the two wooden panels. The latter is accompanied by a long text describing the world; it deals with its creation, the four elements of which it is composed, its shape, dimensions, and divisions. Though the Catalan Atlas is the earliest complete example of its kind which has survived, it was undoubtedly preceded by other similar attempts at extending the range of the portolan chart. Thus, pilots knew at a glance, for instance, that any port lettered in red offered revictualing and a safe harbor; dots and crosses, on the other hand, indicated underwater hazards.
Continental interiors are filled with detail, compass lines drawn, and decorative items are added to enhance the nearly up-to-date picture. Its capital at Cambalucr or Chanbaleth [Beijing], the city of the Great Khan which so intrigued the chroniclers of the 14th century, receives due prominence, with a long legend describing its magnitude and grandeurs. When it has finished ringing, no one may pass through the town, and at each gate a thousand men are on guard, not out of fear but in honor of the sovereign. The attempt at representing the configuration of the coast suggests at least that his informants were interested from a maritime point of view. Altogether, as mentioned above, we are told there are 7,548 islands in the Indian Ocean; they are rich in gold, silver, spices, and precious stones, so much so that a€?great ships of many different nationsa€? trade in their waters.
Farther north is the realm of Kebek Khan, a historical figure who reigned from 1309 to 1326: a€?Here reigns King Chabeh, ruler of the Kingdom of the Middle Horde.
Here the text contains information from Marco Polo's account of how in the province of Malabar the death of criminals, who are compelled to commit suicide, is celebrated by their relatives with his observation on the custom of widows immolating themselves on the pyres of their dead husbands, mentioned a few lines later.
In the Gulf, the island of Ormis [Hormuz] is shown, opposite the former settlement of the same name on the mainland. These are jumbled together in a manner sometimes difficult to understand, but with the help of Marco Polo's narrative, it is possible to disentangle the itineraries which the map was evidently intended to set out. East of this lies the lake, Yssikol [Issik Kul], and Emalech the seat of the Khan, the Armalec of other travelers, in the Kuldja region. The compiler, however, perhaps because he confused this desert area with the Gobi, has transferred this stretch to the north of the Issik Kul.
In addition to Asia, the narratives of contemporary travelers were also extensively used by Cresques in Africa.
We are told, for example, that merchants bound for Guinea pass the Atlas mountain range, shown here in its typical form of a bird's leg with three claws at its eastern end, at Val de Durcha.
This rare speculation on the part of Cresques contained at least some partial truth because the Lacus Nili, the Pactolus of Strabo, and the Palolus of later maps, which in the Catalan Atlas and subsequent works is located in the neighborhood of Timbuktu, may reasonably be identified with the flood region of the Niger. By so doing, however, they found themselves reducing the vast extent of the Sahara almost to a vanishing point.
The port of Quseir is clearly marked, and the accompanying text specifies that it is here that spices are taken on land and sent to Cairo and Alexandria. The importance of Baghdad as a center of the spice trade is emphasized; from there, precious wares from India are sent throughout the Syrian land and especially to Damascus. This African prince appears in the Catalan Atlas in a stately fashion with crown, orb, and scepter, with the inscription: The richest and noblest King in the world. In this section the coastlines are greatly differentiated and the abundance of names is in great contrast with the quantity of information, literally and graphically, supplied in sheets 5 and 6 (Asia). Nor can they be the Azores, which are first mentioned in 1427, or the Cape Verde Islands discovered only in 1455-1456.
They are obviously to be identified with the Ichthyophagi, one of the fabulous races traditionally placed in Asia or in Africa.
But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. No man spoke, but the woman said she would voluntarily let go of the rope, because, as a woman, she was used to giving up everything for her husband, kids and men in general, and was used to always making sacrifices with little in return. If you could go back in time to attend just one BSI dinner from years gone by, which one would it be? It was a publication party for the first BSI anthology of Writings About the Writings, Vincent Starretta€™s 221B: Studies in Sherlock Holmes, with most of its contributors present that night. Mistakes can be corrected, assumptions confirmed, missing passages filled in, and hitherto-unsuspected aspects revealed. Starrett could be excused for overlooking it, since he had been out of the country at the time, on an extended tour of duty. The changes I would have made are of a rather minor character, and probably if it were not my own child I would not be conscious of the few warts that disfigure it.
Our dearly beloved public won't know Staphonse from Staphouse (if that's not in the eight pages) and even if they do find ground for pinning us down, the controversy might actually be profitable. I hope everything comes out satisfactorily, and that you will be East again before too long. It was the first of an unbroken series of annual minutes prepared by Smith through 1960, the year of his death. A copy of the book, presented with the compliments of the publishers, was put at each place. Cecil For(r)rester, who expressed his sympathy and pledged his assistance in the Society's research in the matter of his ancestral relations with a certain governess. Harris says, the Irregulars meeting every January, at Cavanagha€™s by then, grew so many for the room, that diners no longer had the elbow-room to wield an oyster fork).
His talk that evening, Morley reported in writings reprinted earlier in this volume, was a€?probably the most charming discourse to which we have listened.a€? Later, though, as Morley also observed, Denis Conan Doyle (not to mention his sometimes volcanic younger brother Adrian) came to regard the BSI as some sort of conspiracy dedicated to usurping their fathera€™s reputation and accomplishments. Very different from Woollcott, he wrote in a vein of decorous modesty asking if he could be put on the waiting list and offered to undergo any sort of inquest of suitability. In every respect but this the dinner at the Murray Hill Hotel last week was a roaring success, and the book -- however it may ride the seas -- was properly launched. Altick is the author of many books, including the evocatively titled Victorian Studies in Scarlet in 1972. How he came to write to Vincent Starrett in Chicago, he no longer remembers, but from his papers at Franklin & Marshall come these two letters from Starrett, who encouraged him, commented on his paper, and saved it until 221B came along as a convenient outlet a few years later. It seems to me that you have made out an excellent case and I hope you may find an editor who will publish the paper. It was, instead, a trip around the world of his own, paid for by the sale of his 1935 novel The Great Hotel Murder to the movies.
Unable to identify Latham, I offered a complimentary copy of the next volume of BSI History to anyone who could.
I propose that you and I appoint ourselves a committee, perhaps together with Harold Latham of the Macmillan Company, to arrange this matter. It isna€™t so hot, in my opinion a€” only about 400-500 place names, and many of the richest ones not geographical at all. Just as soon as he gets a little breathing spell he is planning to write you a lengthy epistle. His paper a€?The Creator of Holmes in the Flesha€? reads as if it had originally been a talk a€” perhaps at the a€™36 dinner, about which we have few details. Warren Force (died 1959) was in the tar business a€” founder and chairman of the Hydrocarbon Products Company, Inc., and a director and the treasurer of the Tar Distilling Company and Old Colony Tar Company at the time of his death. The Five Orange Pips had been founded in 1935 independently of the BSI, perhaps in blissful ignorance of its existence; and for ten years they regarded the BSI as the lesser body. Leavitt, BSI by way of the Grillparzer Club well before 1934, railed about it to Julian Wolff many years later, when Wolff had succeeded Smith as the BSIa€™s Commissionaire. An uncle of mine who must have been a contemporary of Watson in Edinburgh continued to put the sundries of his evening comfort in the coal box a€” which never had held coal a€” until his death a few years ago. He was across the prairies and over the Rockies in Reno, Nevada, in the process of getting a divorce from his first wife, Lillian Hartsig, in the days when six weeksa€™ residence in a€?The Biggest Little City in the Worlda€? was the quickest way. Starrett, an action which, in the preoccupations which ensued, was probably not accomplished.a€? But other Irregularsa€™ copies did make the rounds of the table. Steelea€™s hand was steady, but some signatures show signs of having been inscribed a few rounds of drinks later. I tore up two or three attempts to do it from an old drawing, finally put on my old dressing gown and posed for it in the mirror.a€? The parenthetical passage which had been missing held the clue. Randall hoped to resell it intact to someone, perhaps a library where it would be available for scholarly use, but in 1943 finally offered it up piecemeal.
Latham writes me from Macmillan that he will see that a complimentary copy goes to everyone. I carried a coal scuttle of the Baker Street variety to New York, and it was placed in triumph, and, I hope, in complete vindication of Watson's reporting, in the middle of the table - we kept the cigars in it.
And, yes, I'll hang on to the remaining two chapters I have and use them (I am sure) before your book goes into print.
We are thinking of putting out the Gazetteer together about June 1st, as a private effort, illustrated with reductions of these maps, which would really touch it off. This was his first BSI dinner and he was meeting virtually all these men for the first time that night.
Ronald Mansbridge was born in England in 1905, attended Cambridge University, and came to the United States in 1928 to teach at Barnard College.
6, sitting next to my old friend Basil Davenport, who has another old friend of mine, Peter Greig, on his right. When I arrived in New York in 1928, I had a letter of introduction to Chris from Sheldon Dick, whom I knew at Corpus, Cambridge.
I missed that one, but I happened to follow Archie on a trip across America, about a week behind him, staying at some of the same hotels. Basil was too proud to accept money from a rich aunt Juliet; but he did let her pay his membership dues at the Yale Club, which he called a€?the most inclusive club in New York,a€? and which he liked because he could take their thick correspondence cards and cut them to fit inside his shoes perfectly when the soles wore out. Like so many others, he was hit by the Depression, but made ends meet by doing public relations work for various and sundry. I remember an animated discussion with him once about a book on Horace we had published at Cambridge University Press. Although he didna€™t attend the dinner, he made arrange-ments for copies of 221B: Studies in Sherlock Holmes to be distributed at the dinner. This arrangement led to the folds of the precious sheets becoming worn through with use, so that these sheets were divided into 12 half-sheets, mounted on boards to fold like a screen.
Then come geographical accounts of countries, continents, oceans, and tides, as well as astronomical and meteorological information. Abraham Cresques, a Jew of Palma on the island of Majorca, for many years was 'master of mappaemundi and compasses', i.e.
From the Mar del Sarra [Caspian Sea] in the west, with a fairly accurate outline in the style of the portolan charts, the Mongol domains stretch away eastwards to the coasts of Catayo [China]. Some of the islands off Quinsay may stand for the Chusan archipelago, and further to the south is the large island of Caynam, [Hainan].
The kingdoms of India as enumerated by Polo are absent from the map, and there are significant differences in the towns appearing in the two documents. The reference is to the gate that Alexander is supposed to have built in the Caspian Mountains to exclude Gog and Magog, who are here equated with various Central Asian tribes. The Southern Arabian coast has names differing from those given by Polo, and in one of them, Adramant, we may recognize the modern Hadhramaut. The delineation is then confused by the repetition of the Badakshan uplands, the mountains of Baldassia, a mistake that probably arose from confusion over the river system of southern Asia. In fact the section illustrated by #235B is thought to represent Nicolo and Maffeo Polo, with their Mongol envoys, crossing the Tien Shan mountains on their way through what is now China's Sinkiang Province, to Beijing (south is at the top). Here the special feature of interest on the Catalan Atlas is the inscription and picture of the vessel recording the departure of the Catalan, Jacome Ferrer, on a voyage to the 'river of gold' southwest of the new Finisterre of Bojador in 1346. More geographical information is given on the Maghreb, which, after all, is part of the Mediterranean.
Thanks to their notorious capacity to travel long distances without water, they completely transformed African trade, opening sub-Saharan areas to Islam. In Arabia, between the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf, is located the kingdom of Sheba; the queen, who came to visit King Solomon, is shown crowned and holding a golden disk as symbol of her wealth. Navigational information is also recorded: a€?From the mouth of the river of Baghdad, the Indian and Persian Oceans open out. The mountains in the European and African section are arranged in chains or chain-like symbols, in Asia they appear as regular humped garlands of rocks. The Catalan Atlas, in fact, marks the progress in the gradual discovery of the Atlantic and the west coast of Africa with an illustration of Jaime Ferrera€™s ship, which, we are told, set sail on lo August 1346 bound for the fabulous Rio de Oro [River of Gold] in Africa. In this spirit of critical realism, Cresques and his fellow Catalan cartographers of the 14th century, threw off the bonds of tradition and anticipated the achievements of the Renaissance.
The city stands near the apex of a triangle formed by two rivers and the ocean; each of the two rivers divides into three before reaching the sea, a representation embodying a somewhat confused notion of the inter-linked natural and artificial waterways of China. So, plasma has truer color and does better in darker rooms, and LCD has more vivid color and does better in bright rooms.
The very first, in 1934, when Alexander Woollcott rode across Manhattan in a hansom cab with Vincent Starrett to crash the party?
And we can get a glimpse of the magical evening of January 30, 1940, in a BSI dinner photograph a€” apparently the first ever taken a€” which in 1990 we did not know had ever existed. Much new is there: the dinner photo and a key to it, letters from Vincent Starrett, Edgar W. But he went on to implicate Christopher Morley in defense of such a deplorable situation: a€?To quote Mr. I doubt that time remains to enable the development of an essay on the Obliquity of the Ecliptic, but it is barely possible, if I apply myself assiduously, that I might have ready for confidential distribution for those present, a typewritten copy of the Gazetteer on which I have recently been making fairly decent progress.
I was altogether too finicky, anyway, in writing you as I did, and I hope you'll forgive me. The meeting voted spontaneously to send greetings and a fully autographed copy of the book to Mr. There were some veterans of the Three Hours for Lunch Club and the Grillparzer Sittenpolizei Verein, like Frank Henry, Malcolm Johnson, Bill Hall, Mitchell Kennerley, and Robert K.
In my capacity as Buttons, I shall be sending you as sober an account of the evening as I can see my way clear to put together.
Anyway, let me know what you think of it, and how it might be improved, and perhaps for Christmas or some time before I can get my bargain-price printer to put it in type. There was a short session of the Irene Adler division here in Reno, at which I presided - Basil Rathbone being at the Wigwam Theatre in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. He is still at work, and his most recent book, a study of the first ten years of Punch, was published in 1997. You will be more likely to find one favorable to the idea of publication, I think, if you will abbreviate the essay skillfully; its length just now is against it, I'm afraid.
Starretta€™s journey began in the Orient and ended in Europe, with his first visit to London in some years.
The suggestion of the Murray Hill, as well as the impetus for the 1940 BSI dinner, came from Christopher Morley.
A cost estimate I recently saw for a businessman visiting New York in 1941 gave $3.35 a day for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Smith as Buttons communicated with the membership through memoranda to the BSI, sometimes enclosing whatever membership list was current at the time.


Bell, who was unaccountably omitted from the list of those invited to last Januarya€™s celebration; and that of Dr. Stolper and Howard Swiggett, respectively a professor of English at Columbia University who scandalized his colleagues by contending that literature should be taught by writers, and a novelist well-known in his day, with links to the New York Police Commissioner, and later to certain cryptic wartime British missions in New York.
Leavitt, and Gene Tunney, plus at least one other, non-fiction and mystery writer Hulbert Footner, whose only known connection with the BSI is his name on this 1940 list. Leavitt swore to this version of history in a€?The Origin of 221B Worship,a€? his 1961 memoir of the BSIa€™s early years. Smith eventually coaxed the Pips into the BSI, and then struggled to save them in 1947 when Christopher Morley felt the BSI had grown too large and unruly. Hence the membership of people like Don Marquis, Frank Henry, Bucky Fuller and other friends of Chris Morleya€™s who couldna€™t be annoyed with studying the Sacred Writings. It was, I tell you, an ornamental piece of furniture, and when the fire needed replenishing, the bell-pull at the end of the mantel-piece brought the servant lassie from the kitchen with a cannily measured a€?scuttlea€? of coal, from which the fire was fed with great daintiness and dexterity. Smith sat next to Keddie at the dinner, and the two men hit it off a€” less than three months later, Smith was in Boston to join the Keddies Sr. To do so, he and Starrett produced a catalogue still highly desirable for its own sake, both for the many splendid items at what today seem sheer giveaway prices, and for the rich canonical fantasy which Starrett and Randall wrote into it.
We will try to keep the actual dinner within the blood royal, but as soon as it has taken place Macmillan can make good boblicity out of it to help the book. Watson, but probably not so well - at least he didn't seem to understand him as well as he did Holmes.
Denis Conan Doyle is off to himself a bit in the corner; not intentionally perhaps, but capturing a sense of the remove between the Conan Doyle Estate and the BSI. How well he managed to associate names with faces that evening, when high spirits and hard spirits were the order of the day, is unclear. A few of them, Irregulars active today were able to know in person before they fell from the ranks. In 1930 he was appointed Cambridge University Pressa€™s representative here, a position he held for forty years. It was clear that he had made quite an impression; at one hotel they asked me whether I wanted whisky for breakfast. Roberts, author of A Note on the Watson Problem, and then Doctor Watson, which Frank Morley at Faber & Faber published.
Four half-sheets are occupied by cosmographical and navigational data, they describe the whole concept of the world, show astronomical and astrological representations, and provide information about the calendar, the sun, moon, planets, the signs of the zodiac and the tides. The second sheet presents a spectacular diagram of a large astronomical and astrological wheel. This country makes a sweep from east to south with an approach to its actual form, and along it's coast appear several of the great medieval ports and trading centers frequented by Arab merchants. There Cresques placed some of the fabulous and monstrous races legendary in classical antiquity and the Middle Ages: a€?On this island are people who are very different from the rest of mankind. Conspicuous on the map is the Christian Kingdom and city of Columbo, placed on the east coast. And know that these people marry at the age of about twelve years and generally live to be 40 years old.
The island of Scotra, an important stage on the trade route from Aden to India, is misplaced to the east, and appears to occupy the approximate position of the Kuria Muria Islands. The legend above them reads, in translation: This caravan left the Empire of Sarra to go to Catayo, across a Great Desert (Sarai, on the Edil [Volga], was the capital of the Kipchak Tartars, from which the Polos had set out about 1262.
This refers to the northwest coast of Africa which extends beyond Cape Bojador to a point just north of the Rio d'Oro. Later draftsmen, in order to escape the embarrassment caused by indicating the great trans-Saharan caravan routes within these narrow limits, began to speculate on the course of the west African coast, south of Bojador. Here they fish for pearls, which are supplied to the town of Baghdad.a€? We learn that a€?before they dive to the bottom of the sea, pearl fishers recite magic spells with which they frighten away the fisha€? a piece of information that comes straight from Marco Polo, who mentions that the pearl fishers on the Malabar coast are protected by the magic and spells of the Brahmins. The heathens believe that Paradise is situated there, because the islands have such a temperate climate and such a great fertility of the soil.
For this reason the heathens of India believe that their souls are transported to these islands after death, where they live for ever on the scent of these fruits. Or the 1941 dinner, when Rex Stout came for the first time, and electrified Irregulars with a€?Watson Was a Womana€?? That a photo had been taken that night came to light later in a letter from James Keddie of Boston to Vincent Starrett. Smith, James Keddie, and Christopher Morley, Starretta€™s telegram to the BSI dinner, Morleya€™s handwritten menu, autographs of the Irregular diners that night, the picture of Sherlock Holmes that Frederic Dorr Steele drew that night, the first BSI membership list Edgar W. Incidentally, I think you did us all a service by naming Mycroft Holmes as the detective who solved his problems without ever visiting the scene of the crime or seeing the evidence. Later that year, he wrote the few words about it that follow, in a letter to Allen Robertson of Baltimore (then unknown to the BSI, but later founder i??of The Six Napoleons of Baltimore, and a€?The Reigate Squires,a€? BSI). After the Woollcott condescension most of us were content to go on without any Stated Meetings . It includes the membersa€™ chosen noms de canon, a practice of the Pips which may have inspired the Titular Investitures adopted by the BSI later under Smitha€™s leadership. But it bespoke his confidence in Smith, who had yet to attend a BSI dinner, when he turned first to him for help organizing the 1940 affair. Julian Wolff, whose notable Sherlockian maps qualify him, I think, beyond any suspicion of a doubt for membership. This list has been compiled in a piecemeal fashion from many sources but as time goes on we hope to show improvement!
Christopher Morley cited Swiggett in an Irregular way once, in his March 4, 1939, a€?Trade Windsa€? column. Stone of Waltham, Mass., had been in Sherlockian circles since the late a€™Thirties, was a contributor to 221B, and had at-tended the 1940 dinner a€” as he would the a€™41 dinner a month after this list. As a matter of fact, by God, I doubt like hell if Bill Hall could ever have passed a really probing quiz in those early days.
Keddie, who had come from Scotland as a child, had a particular interest in this Baker Street relic in which Sherlock Holmes kept his cigars. I have in my possession a coal box which to my knowledge is nearly fifty years old, but which, until it fell into the hands of the philistines in this country had never held so much as a spoonful of coal.
Across the table from him, a nonchalant David Randall tilts his chair back, his hand stuck in his pocket.
Of all his twenty years of writing up BSI dinner minutes, it seems safe to say that this is the one most likely to contain some errors in the list of attendees. On the basis of the signatures plus the dinner photograph, thirty-seven, if that is Elmer Davis at no. He arrived in New York with a letter of introduction to Christopher Morley in his pocket; and, with no less a Holmesian than S. Cambridge University Press had published Shakespearea€™s Imagery and What It Tells Us by Caroline Spurgeon, and I wanted to get publicity for it.
He was the BSIa€™s food-and-drink expert, and worked with me on the annual Oxford and Cambridge dinners in New York too.
An even earlier chart (probably covering the whole 'world' originally), that by Angelino Dulcert, of Majorca, dated 1339, also has points of resemblance to the Catalan Atlas. There are several references to world maps executed by him, though this is the only one now known. There is a further allusion to Alexander having erected two trumpet-blowing figures in bronze; these, according to various medieval legends, resounded with the wind and frightened the Tartars until the instruments were blocked up by various nesting birds and animals. For India and the ocean to the west, therefore, we may conclude that charts were used which differed in detail from Polo's account, though similar in general features. Here unfortunately the map ends; unlike the Medici Atlas, or some others, it makes no attempt at a representation, conjecture or otherwise, of the southern portion of this continent. The text beside a Touareg riding on a camel and also a group of tents informs us that this land is inhabited by veiled people living in tents and riding camels. Various trading stations are indicated on the shore of the Indian Ocean from Hormus, a€?where India begins,a€? to Quilon in Kerala.
With meticulous care the islands in the region of the portolan chart section are displayed, they are painted in color, some of them like Sicily, Sardinia and Corsica are shown in gold. But, therea€™s no such thing as a 1080p TV broadcast (cable, satellite, anything), and wona€™t be for years.
Actually, it was an illustration for a Saturday Evening Post short story, a€?The Slipper Tongue,a€? about a slick-tongued horse thief fleeing a lynch mob. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. Athens, to honor god of wine & drama, Dionysus [Baccus], where comic actors wore padded phalluses as part of their costumes. The 1946 dinner, when the premiere issue of The Baker Street Journal arrived arrived at the last moment to be handed out? It was the only one ever attended by a Conan Doyle, Sir Arthura€™s son Denis a€” and the decades-long feud between the BSI and the Conan Doyle Estate dates to that night.
Only a few dozen men had been present that night, and it seemed unlikely that a copy would ever surface now, after all these years.
According to Smith, Denis listened with bewilderment to the various toasts offered to Holmes and his entourage, and to the scholarly reports on various aspects of the investigatora€™s career. Keddie sent me a jolly letter about it, which, with yours, goes into the permanent records.
The difficulty is that it is rather too scholarly for any of the really popular journals - and they are the only ones that pay worthwhile rewards. I hope in my menial capacity as Boots [sic], I have not, in doing this, incurred the wrath of my Gasogene and Tantalus.a€? Presumably the Morley list from which Smith worked was the 1935 one printed in Irregular Memories of the a€?Thirties (pp.
But beyond that, their Irregular con-nections in 1940 are a mystery, and their names do not appear again in surviving Irregular records. His inscription in the copy of Appointment in Baker Street that he sent Woollcott in 1939 read a€?To Alexander Woollcott in appreciation for loyal work as a Baker Street Irregular,a€? and in 1944, the year following Woollcotta€™s death, he referred to him in Profile by Gaslight (to Leavitta€™s lasting annoyance) as a founder of the BSI. What do you think?a€? I have not seen Morleya€™s reply, but Woollcotta€™s New Yorker article about the 1934 dinner did not appear in 221B. Other veteran BSIs-to-be not on it, but at the a€™41 dinner and many more to come, were Philip Duschnes the bookseller, Charles Honce the A.P. Watson,a€™ a€?The Game Is Afoot!a€™ and a€?The Second Most Dangerous Man in London.a€™a€? These were suggestions, if you will, at the original meeting, but they were approved, and the Davis Document makes them Constitutional. His defense, when threatened with inquiry, was to roar (and I use the word deliberately a€” ROAR), a€?Dona€™t put me to the question!a€? As him and dare him, for me, to deny it.
In that instance, the coal box, which stood by the fireplace chair, had been used by my mother and by my grandmother before her for the odds and ends of sewing and knitting utensils that a Scotswoman picks up in the afternoon that even her time of rest may not be entirely wasted! Eliot), FVM had returned to New York in 1938 to be trade editor at the Harcourt, Brace company.
Suit will be filed as soon as possible after my residence (six weeks) is established; and if there is no opposition there will be no delay.
But, simply to put the reader on the alert, a few obvious corrections may be noteda€? a€” and Miss Nightwork, perennial Ph.D. Elmer Davis was perhaps the best known national celebrity in the BSI at the time, from his work as a CBS radio newsman. In those days the very best place to get a book mentioned was Morleya€™s a€?Trade Windsa€? column in the Saturday Review of Literature.
We played a game to see who would be the first to telephone the other each year on December 16th, with the words a€?O Sapienta,a€? which we always found on that day in our Cambridge Pocket Diaries. I dona€™t remember his attendance at any of the BSI dinners; but I recall vividly that when we would meet him at dinner at the St.
The other elements (fire, air, water) are incorporated into the next three concentric circles; then come the seven planets, the band of the zodiac, and the various stations and phases of the moon. In view of the possible identity of Dulcert, and the Ligurian origin of the Medici Atlas, we may conclude that this type of world map, though developed by Catalans, originated early in the 14th century in northern Italy, where the narrative of Marco Polo, which, as will be seen, supplied many of the details embodied in the map, would be most readily available.
After his death in 1387, his work was carried on by his son, Jafuda, who eventually instructed the Portuguese under the patronage of Prince Henry the Navigator. This form of the name (it is rendered Coilum by Polo), and other details, suggest that the compiler drew upon the writings of Friar Jordanus, who was a missionary in this area, and whose Book of Marvels was completed and in circulation by 1340. It is marked by a line of towns up the valley of the Edil from Agitarchan [Astrakhan] through Sarra [Sarai], Borgar, and thence eastward through Pascherit [probably representing the territory of the Bashkirs east of the middle Volga], and Sebur, or Sibir, a medieval settlement whose site is unknown, but thought to be on the upper Irtish.
The crowned black man holding a golden disk is identified as Musse Melly, a€?lord of the negroes of Guineaa€? - in fact, Mansa Musa, of fabulous wealth. Speculation of this sort did at least have the merit of enabling the mapmaker to draw the Sahara with greater accuracy. The 1948 a€?committee in cameraa€? dinner, when the BSI's future hung by a thread upon Christopher Morleya€™s discontent? There were Crossword Puzzle winners like Basil Davenport, Harry Hazard, Harvey Officer, and Earle Walbridge. Bell was there at the time, and when Bell died in 1947, Starrett recalled in his a€?Books Alivea€? column in the Tribune walking up and down Baker Street with Bell, arguing about which house had been Sherlock Holmesa€™s.
Jackson of Barre, Vermont, a Crossword solver, and Morleya€™s friend and Grillparzer crony Buckminster Fuller.
Williams (died 1940), who brought his son Peter to the 1940 BSI dinner, was art director at the American Book Company, a well-known book and print collector, and an author of childrena€™s travel books. Would Smith have added Alexander Woollcott to the BSIa€™s membership list without consulting Christopher Morley? If we are met with hostility, the case will have to be argued, and I've no way of knowing how long it might take. Smith is down the table on the opposite side, not yet at its head where he soon will be for the rest of his life. So are the signatures of two more men not named in Smitha€™s minutes, who may be among the unidentified faces in the picture: Ernest S. Following the dinner, Harry Hazard prepared a partial key to the photograph.Elmer Davis is not on it, and the face at no. Roberts as a mentor back home, found himself a Baker Street Irregular on Morleya€™s 1935 membership list.
I met him when I was an undergraduate at Cambridge, attending his lectures on Samuel Johnson, but it was in publishing that he made his reputation.
Spurgeon showed the kind of man Shakespeare must have been by tabulating all the metaphors and similes he used, showing him to be familiar with the countryside, gardens, and domestic animals. We thought it began one of the Collects in the Prayer Book; but we were puzzled at its having a special day.
Regis Hotel with that most generous host, Howard Goodhart, Rosenbach always had a full bottle of whisky at his place at the table, while the rest of us drank wine.
These proportions are of some significance, for they have undoubtedly restricted the cartographer in his portrayal of the extreme northern and southern regions. The next six rings are devoted to the lunar calendar and to an account of the effect of the moon when it is found in the different signs of the zodiac. The Catalan Atlas says: The circumference of the earth is 180,000 stadia, that is to say 20,052 miles (this is the same calculation as Ptolemy's, yet it was given a full thirty years prior to the first known Latin translation of his Geographia, #119 ).
But the day of the Jewish school of cartography at Majorca was already drawing to a close, owing to the wave of persecution which swept through the Aragon kingdom in the latter years of the century. Possibly additions were also made so that the map might serve as an illustration to his narrative.
In this quarter, the information upon which the map is based was not drawn from Marco Polo.
Also its treatment of the Atlantic islands: the Azores, Canary, and Madeira groups, is more complete than any representation of earlier times.
The gap in the snake-like Atlas Mountain chain of North Africa is meant to illustrate a pass that these Arab merchants commonly used (#235A).
Or perhaps the dinner a€” the date still uncertain a€” when Jim Montgomery sang a€?Aunt Claraa€? for the first time. Recently (within a year) I had the same problem on my hands - and found no American editor whatever for a Sherlockian essay which has since found place in an English Symposium or anthology issued as a book.
As a charter member, I call for a prompt and continued honoring of the wise provisions of The Founding Fathers.
Weber declared himself a€?Judge Lynch,a€? his pen-name as chief mystery book reviewer in the Saturday Review of Literature. James Keddie sits next to him, and on the table nearby is the orthodox coal-scuttle he has brought from Boston.
Colling, a former New York Evening Post colleague of Morleya€™s (its movie critic, who helped turn Morleya€™s 1922 novel Where the Blue Begins into a play in 1925), and H. He attended the annual dinner for the first time in 1936, and is the only living person to have attended BSI dinners at both the Murray Hill Hotel and, before that, Christ Cellaa€™s speakeasy. He was Secretary to the Syndics of Cambridge University Press from 1922 to 1948, and more than any other one man he had brought the University Press out of the academic backwaters into the mainstream of publishing. My wife and I spent three long evenings reading four of Morleya€™s books and doing the same to him. This was perhaps to some extent deliberate, for two years before the composition of this map, we hear of the Infant John (son of Peter of Aragon) demanding a map 'well executed and drawn with its East and West' and figuring 'all that could be shown of the West and of the Strait [of Gibraltar] leading to the West'.
Three more rings show, respectively, the division of the circle into degrees, while the last gives an account of the Golden Number. There are still other names which are not found in Jordanus either; but the commercial importance of Cambay (Canbetum, on the map) would account for the relatively detailed information about this region. To the south is a long east-west range, called the Mountains of Sebur, representing the northwestern face of the Tien Shan and Altai. His pilgrimage to Mecca, including a visit to Cairo, was famous for the enormous amount of gold he spent on that occasion. Edgar Smitha€™s affectionate zeal, not less than his Sherlockian scholarship, his gusto in pamphleteering, his delight in keeping orderly records, and his access to mimeographic and parchment-engrossing and secretarial resources, all these were irresistible. Henry Morton Robinson was a popular writer whose 1943 Saturday Review article about the BSI, a€?Baker Street Irregularities,a€? was reprinted in Irregular Memories of the a€™Thirties. Weber, had been at the 1936 dinner, and the 1940 too, despite the silence of Smitha€™s minutes on that score. Bell at the Victoria Hotel, to found the BSIa€™s first scion society, The Speckled Band of Boston. Price, the American Bank Note Company executive who had solved the Sherlock Holmes Crossword in 1934. Davis and Hazard had been at the 1936 dinner together a€” their signatures are both on a surviving copy of that nighta€™s menu.
His a€?Profile of a New York Irregular,a€? about Basil Davenport, appeared in Irregular Proceedings of the Mid a€™Forties. The Infant, in other words, was interested, not in northern Europe and Asia or in southern Africa, but in the Orient and the Western Ocean.
They eat white men and strangers, if they can catch them.a€? The reference is to giants familiar from the medieval Alexander legend, specifically defined here as Anthropophagi. There is, surprisingly, no indication of the river Indus, a striking omission also from Polo's narrative.
In the late 13th and early 14th centuries there were Franciscan mission stations at these localities, and the details no doubt came originally from the friars.
This is plausible enough, for he controlled a large part of Africa, from Gambia and Senegal to Gao on the Niger, and had access to some of its richest gold deposits.
I dona€™t suppose that any society of Amateur Mendicants has ever had a more agreeable or competent fugleman.
Simeon Strunsky at the New York Times, a€?dean of grammarians,a€? as Morley liked to call him, had been on the 1935 membership list as well, though he (like Rosenbach) never attended a BSI dinner.
Standing against the wall are two of Morleya€™s closest friends, Bill Hall in deerstalker, and Robert K. He was the author of A Note on the Watson Problem, 100 copies, privately printed at the Cambridge U.P.
The cartographer satisfied him by cutting out, as it were, an east-west rectangle from a circular world map which would cover the desired area. George Grosjean, in his commentary on the 1977 facsimile edition of the Atlas, stresses that the orientation of this map must be understood from its essential part. To these far distant waters are also relegated mermaids, some of them probably the traditional half-woman and half-fish, the others more siren-like half-birds. This oversight probably arose from confusion that often can be found between the Indus and the river Ganges.a€?The Indian powers are represented on the Catalan Atlas by the Sultan of Delhi and the Hindu King of Vijayanagar, who is wrongly identified as a Christian. Reports of the fabulous wealth of this African ruler did much to encourage an interest in the exploration of Africa. This oversight probably arose from confusion that often can be found between the Indus and the river Ganges.The Indian powers are represented on the Catalan Atlas by the Sultan of Delhi and the Hindu King of Vijayanagar, who is wrongly identified as a Christian.
John Winterich was a prominent critic who had also been a colleague of Morleya€™s at the Saturday Review of Literature. Mans-bridge lives in Connecticut, and it is an honor to publish the following reminiscence here. The map was constructed in the portolano style, a type of medieval navigation chart which was intended to lie on the chart-table of a ship and always was oriented to the necessities of navigation, thus there is no 'orientation of priority' of such maps. The one illustrated has two fishtails, in accordance with one of the most common medieval conventions. Farther north appear the Three Wise Men on their way to Bethlehem and at the top (or bottom) of the map a caravan; all of the latter figures are drawn upside down, as the map was probably meant to be laid horizontally and viewed from both sides. The shape of the Catalan Atlas, therefore, must not be taken as evidence on questions such as the extent, form or knowledge of the African continent; nor does the change from a circular to a rectangular frame indicate specifically any change in ideas relating to the shape of the earth. Since the Atlas was not intended as a portolano for daily use but instead was a luxury edition for a princely library, it is useless to ask for correct orientation of the map-sheets.
Camels laden with goods are followed by their drivers; behind them various people, one of them asleep, are riding horses.
Leavitt, Harvey Officer, James Keddie, Earle Walbridge, and other legendary figures from the BSIa€™s early days. He could be serious, but never solemn; the lighter side of letters and life appealed to him, and he became prominent in the affairs of both Sherlock Holmes Societies (pre-war and post-war) in England. This fact notwithstanding, however, as the legends that are legible prevail in north-orientation, in the modern literature of the maps the north-orientation is now adopted.a€?A major impetus to the advancement of exploration in Western Europe during the later Middle Ages came through the evolution and use of this very kind of map, the nautical chart or portolano.
This fact notwithstanding, however, as the legends that are legible prevail in north-orientation, in the modern literature of the maps the north-orientation is now adopted.A major impetus to the advancement of exploration in Western Europe during the later Middle Ages came through the evolution and use of this very kind of map, the nautical chart or portolano. Stone and Howard Haycraft, sitting against the wall further down, preserve a serious demeanor.
He ended up with two-thirds of a column in Whoa€™s Who, and many honors: Master of Pembroke College, Cambridge, Vice-Chancellor of Cambridge University, and finally Sir Sydney. Designed to assist mariners find their way at sea, it served a practical purpose akin to that of the future road map, but it answered this purpose by depicting not the route itself, but detailed coastlines and hazards to shipping. Across the table, Charlie Goodman and his brother Jack beam at the camera, while Mitchell Kennerley the bookman, who will take his own life ten years hence, studies the back of his hand somberly.
Mariners previously had to rely on written itineraries which can be traced back to the peripli or coastal pilots of the classical world. Further down, Harvey Officer, soon to be the BSIa€™s first songster with his Irregular anthem a€?The Road to Baker Street,a€? smiles shyly at the camera. C.,a€? bluff, friendly but business-like, at ease in any company and in any country a€” even riding a camel in Egypt, winning a race against another one ridden by an Oxford man.
Following the introduction of the mariner's compass in Europe towards the end of the 13th century, nautical or portolan charts were made as an extension of the peripli, constructed on a framework of radiating compass lines, with north at the top. The owlish bespectacled man at the bottom of the picture may or may not be Elmer Davis; across from him, Earle Walbridge makes another appearance in what will long stand as the record for unbroken attendance at the annual dinners.
Places were located and marked around the coasts, while places located further inland and usually the entire interior of the continents were left blank. The province and town of Lop mentioned by Marco Polo can be connected with the modern town of Ruoqiang (Charkhlik) south of Lop Nor.
Basil Davenport turns toward Peter Greig, as Ronald Mansbridge raises a wine-glass in salute. It should be emphasized that while the Atlas was drawn in the portolano style, it is not, strictly speaking, a portolan chart. The typical nautical chart, which some scholars believe had its origin with the Catalan mapmakers, had hitherto been cartographically the very opposite of the medieval theocratic or ecclesiastical maps. Portolan charts traditionally displayed only known, discovered coasts, precisely detailed harbors, river mouths, rocks, shallows, currents, etc.



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