Monday, August 20, 2007


I got to the office with plans to accomplish two biggish projects (figuring out and setting the agenda for a committee I'm chairing at least temporarily, and roughing out the syllabus for my writing class), and one small task (checking my books in the bookstore) today before taking off to reread Perkin Warbeck. (That Ford guy isnt' half bad!)

I started in on figuring out the committee stuff. After an hour or so, I walked over to check books in the bookstore with a colleague and got coffee on the way back. All my books were in order (yay!), but my colleague was able to get a potential problem fixed BEFORE it became a real problem! (YAY!)

(Hint to new instructors: always check with your bookstore a couple weeks before classes start. Walk in, look at the books, and make sure things are what they should be. It is MUCH easier to fix potential problems two weeks before students arrive than to try to deal with them when students can't get the book you need for the first week. I've also found bookstore folks super helpful two weeks ahead because they aren't overwhelmingly busy AND because they can fix things before they become problems. One of the best things I ever learned about teaching.)

I returned to the office and got back to figuring out the committee stuff. And when I looked up, it was after 4pm.

The first good news is that we have a great administrative assistant over in the college office, and she's so great at helping me figure stuff out, work out solutions, and such. I need to get her some serious dark chocolate. My department's administrative assistants make life good here, too. Administrative assistants can make or break an office in so many ways!

The second good news is that I have some really helpful colleagues. Little things can make my life so much easier, and today several of my colleagues stepped up and took care of things with some simple email requests, things that weren't their responsibility, but that they could and did take care of. Yay colleagues!

The third good news is that I'm pretty sure I've got a good handle on chairing this committee this year.

The bad news: Perkin Warbeck will have to wait longer, which is bad because Stanley has just been arrested!

Trivia: I have this weird thing about Ferdinando Stanley, Lord Strange. I just love the idea of someone being called "Lord Strange" (even if it wasn't pronounced that way). Pathetic, I know!. I actually looked him up in the DNB and read up on him once, and he seems pretty interesting (that was pre-Wikipedia, of course). And then he died young!

(Perkin Warbeck's Stanley is Lord Chamberlain William Stanley, brother of Thomas Stanley, then 1st earl of Derby, and thus a great something uncle to Ferdinando, or something.)

Quick, without looking, who is the Lord Chamberlain of "The Lord Chamberlain's Men" fame, and what other peer shared the name (with variant spelling sometimes) and was married to a quite famous female author in the period? (by period, let's go from, say 1580-1642).

Lord Chamberlain, name and peerage:
Other peer, name and peerage:
Famous female author and work(s):

Which ties back to Ferdinando Stanley how?


  1. I have no idea who Pekin Warbeck is, let alone all the rest of those folks.

    Clearly, I am under-read

  2. Ack! A quiz! No fair, I wasn't ready!

  3. Ooh, trivia! I'm going to guess Henry Cary (no clue about his title), another Henry Cary (Viscount Falkland, or similar?), and Elizabeth Cary (Tragedy of Mariam, History of Edward II). I'm probably way off, but I don't know that many women writers who were married to aristocrats with reasonably common names.

  4. Yay, we have a winner! Henry Cary (also Carey) was the 1st Baron Hunsdon, and the Lord Chamberlain who was the first patron of Shakespeare's company, The Lord Chamberlain's Men. (I think Cobham, the next Lord Chamberlain, took over patronage when Cary died.)

    And Ferdinando Stanley fits in because he was the Lord Strange who was patron of Lord Strange's Men, a company that had a fair number of people who "migrated" to the Lord Chamberlain's Men when Stanley died.

    So there's a little line of connection with the theater, and then via name pun, to Elizabeth Cary!

    TBTAM, Perkin Warbeck was a pretender to the English throne during the reign of Henry VII. Warbeck pretended to be Richard of Shrewsbury, second son of Edward IV. Richard, along with his older brother Edward V, having been displaced by their loving uncle Richard III, died mysteriously in the Tower (or something. It's mysterious!). The Plantagenets make me greatly appreciate my family, for sure!

    I dare someone to name their son "Perkin"!

    Pilgrim/Heretic, Quizzes! Much easier when you get all sidetracked with silly names!

  5. I knew about Perkin Warbeck, but if Strange isn't pronounced as "strange," can you tell us non-Elizabethans how it's pronounced?

  6. Undine, from what I gather, Strange was pronounced with a "hard" g, the one you make by voicing with your tongue in "k" position. I may be totally confused, though! Wouldn't be the first time!

  7. Now you've got me trying to say it!

  8. Undine, I think I may have been mistaken, alas. After reviewing the pronunciation thing, I think they may have been trying to indicate not a hard "g" sound, but a flat "a" sound. So, not Strange with a "long a," as in "day," but with an "ah" sound. I think it has to do with the French derivation of the name.