Sunday, June 16, 2013

The repetition of usually initial consonant sounds in two or more neighboring words or syllables

When it comes to saints, patronages run the gamut: places, professions, illness (usually against, unlike professions & places), but today's man has a new one on me:  alliteration

For everyone who went "wait, what?", let me clarify:  Benno, an eleventh century politically savvy bishop...or canon, there is some confusion, is patron saint of
  • anglers (there is a whole story about locking up his church & throwing away the key & then the key being recovered from a fish & if that all sounds like something we have covered before that is because we HAVE, but that was a different guy),
  • weavers (he was big in Meissen & once upon a time weaving was big in Meissen -it was big everywhere- & I am guessing that is the connection although I accept there may not be one, especially since Meissen was really famous for porcelain & Benno is not the patron of porcelain workers who don't seem to have one, although patrons of potters abound),
  • & alliteration.

Benno famously played both sides against the middle in a pre-Martin Luther era church reformation (Martin Luther reviled him.  Specifically.  By name).  The only thing Benno seems to have not flip-flopped on was simony.  Don't feel bad, I had to look it up too:  the sacrilegious vice of purchasing ecclesiastical offices and benefices to which spiritual jurisdiction is attached.  What it isn't is the selling of those offices, for which I could not find a word-no emigration/immigration symmetry here.  

Benno took vows & broke them, pledged to support a pope, then the anti-pope & then back to another not-anti-pope.  This guy was first & foremost a politician & probably lucky not to be living in an age where your old speeches have been recorded & can be played back against you.

Benno pretty much only comes up when someone is in a reform the reformers kind of mood (which is more often tan you might think OR less often than it should be, depending a upon
 your perspective.  That's the thing about reform: there is never enough until there is too much.

But who cares about reform, I want to know about the whole alliteration thing!  He must have been quite the public speaker, maybe his speeches were full of catchy phrases & jingles, you know (or maybe you don't), politicians' stump speeches aren't want they used to be).  It seems to me thought that is ought to be fairly easy (& harmless) to pay homage to Benno on today his day: just stare into the mirror & go at it.  May I suggest "she sells seashells by the seashore". 

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