Thursday, November 25, 2004

Abraham Lincoln's Thanksgiving Proclamation (1863)

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle, or the ship; the axe had enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.

No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.

It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the city of Washington, this third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the independence of the United States the eighty-eighth.

A. Lincoln

Monday, November 22, 2004

Partner in Crime

Greetings Fans and Loved Ones of the Burglar. I will try not to be too obnoxious with my own special sense of humor on this page of otherwise notable intelligence.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Still Roses, Barely

Michigan lost to Ohio State, which is always bad. (I almost flew from California to Ohio for the game. Perhaps it's best I didn't.) But it looks like Iowa is picking up UM's slack by beating Wisconsin. So UM will end up in the Rose Bowl despite losing to rivals Notre Dame and Ohio State in the same season.

A Contest, Sort of

A big congratulations is ready for anyone who knows where the name "Bourgeois Burglar" comes from. When I started this Live Journal, I thought it was an original creation of mine, but later I realized I had read the phrase in a book -- a book about one of my favorite books -- a while back, and I guess it was lodged in my subconscious.

Alternatively, you could guess who the original Bourgeois Burglar is. Of course, if you know who coined the name "Bourgeois Burglar," then you know who the Bourgeois Burglar is.

Using Google to find the answer would work, but it wouldn't be much fun, now, would it?

If you don't want to use Google, but you want hints, let me know.

Friday, November 19, 2004

141 Years ago Today

Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Republic Translation

Apologies to those who check in here to follow the progress of my Republic translation. I'll resume translating in a few days.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Revisiting Those New Year's Resolutions

To recap, the resolutions were the following:

1. Don't let the dishes pile up in the sink.
2. Complete reading for classes ahead of time.
3. Write first drafts of all my major papers and solicit criticism on them.
4. Study Greek one hour a day.
5. Study Latin one hour a day.
6. Stock music collection with classical music again.
7. Write a letter to Jaroslav Pelikan asking him for advice on how to succeed as a scholar.
8. Acquire good art for apartment walls.
9. Find new prime number.
10. Read Robert Musil's The Man Without Qualities

To wit, I have completely succeeded in none of these. I have partially succeeded at numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6. I have not done 7 or 8, but there is still time to do so before the year's end. Numbers 5, 9, and 10, however, show no signs of being completed by the year's end.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Republic 328c7-d2

"For if I were still able to get myself easily to town, it wouldn't be necessary at all for you to come here; instead, we would come to you. But, as it is, you ought to come here more frequently."

[Note that the "you" in this sentence is singular (all three times); i.e., C. addresses himself to S. and not to S. and G.]

Monday, November 01, 2004

Republic 328c5-7

As soon as he saw me, Cephalus greeted me warmly and said, "Socrates, you do not often come down to us in the Piraeus, but you certainly ought to."