Monday, 16 September 2019


In the early hours of this morning in 1979, eight members of two families, realising the fruition of a plot hatched over a year and a half beforehand with careful planning and patience so as not to arouse suspicion, one attempt that ended in resounding failure that almost led to their capture and detention and brought heavier surveillance plus three hand-stitched balloon membranes, crossed from Pößneck in East Germany to Naila just over the border in Bavaria in a hand-engineered hot air balloon with navigation improvised. Read (or listen to) the full story about the harrowing heroics of the families Strelzyk and Wetzel and their determination to secure a future in the West at the link above.

Sunday, 15 September 2019

offset und verlag

Via Present /&/ Correct, we are acquainted with yet another publishing trade magazine this time in the form of the bimonthly then annual anthology editions of Graphis Press, originally founded in Zürich in 1944 and moving to New York headquarters in 1986. Featuring innovations in typography, formatting, layout, presentation, branding, logos and letterhead, past contributors include Milton Glaser, Saul Bass, Victor Vasarely and Herb Lubalin. Much more to explore at the links above.

yes r’lyeh

Via Shadow Manor’s Art of Darkness blog, we are reintroduced to the illustrations and rhyming couplets of deviant artist DrFaustusAU and his complete body of works that survey the genres of science fiction and horror in the style of Doctor Seuss. We especially liked some of the panels from The Shining and HP Lovecraft’s The Call of Cthulu. Check out the links above for more.


A unique form of monumental public crucifix that displays scenes from the Passion, the oldest surviving examples date back to the mid thirteenth century and reflect a megalithic tradition anchored in Bretagne and spreading eastwards.
One of the first examples we encountered on a recent trip was this modern, Art Nouveau interpretation of a calvary (from Golgotha, Γολγοθᾶς, Syriac for the “Place of Skulls,” transliterated as Κρανίου Τόπος or in Latin Calvariæ Locus) in the town of Tréguier (the town of Saint Tudwal) erected by local clergy in 1904 in protest over municipal authorities choosing to honour a controversial native son, the anticlerical theological and ethnology scholar Ernest Renan with a statue provocatively in the square of the cathedral during the previous year, reserved formerly for the temporary installation of displays and processions.
Church steeples also had an interesting and individualised architectural vernacular, with flying elements and each village topped with something unique and articulated. An ancient calvary more in context we found in the churchyard of Locronan (Lokorn, the name meaning the hermitage of Rónán, a sixth century Irish missionary), and is the focal point for some of the major pardons, a Breton form of ceremonial pilgrimage—held on saint days and for which an indulgence, excuse to celebrity—like Saint Patrick’s Day in the middle of Lent, is granted.

eleven herbs and spices

A master of self-promotion with its past campaigns to include sun-screen that smelt of fried chicken and Bluetooth enabled dining tray inserts to help patrons keep their phones grease-free, we learn via Miss Cellania’s Quick Links, that the latest marketing ploy from a fast food chain is a dating simulator (I am not quite sure what that even means) called ❤️I Love You❤️ Colonel Sanders!, pursuing a hotter, younger version of the franchise’s founder, Harland Sanders—an honourary title granted by the state’s governor for excellence in restaurateurship. Inexplicably, one of the playable characters is a dog, who is also a professor at the culinary institute that you all attend.  The property will be released later in the month, for those of you who might be interested, on a platform where enthusiasts watch one another play video games.


Via Boing Boing, we are quite the privileged witnesses to a solar eclipse caused by the shadow of Io moving across the dappled clouds of Jupiter (previously). One of the Galilean Satellites discovered by the artist and polymath in 1610 and designated Jupiter I, this innermost moon is the most dehydrated body known and also the most geologically (ionically) active with over four hundred volcanoes driven by gravitation pressures and tidal heating from its host world.
The mythological figure (whose name means moon) was one of Hera high priestesses at Argos and caught the wandering eye of Zeus, whose advances she steadily rebuffed. Unhappy with the extra divine scrutiny, Io was turned out of the temple, whereupon Zeus transformed her in a resplendent white heifer in order to hide her from his wife. The deception was rather transparent and Hera dispatched an obnoxious gadfly to pester the poor cow and drive her to wonder the Earth without rest.
She crossed from Europe into Asia at the Bosporus (oxford), where she met Prometheus chained, whom despite his own torture was able to console Io was the prophesy that her humanity would be restored. Returning to Greece, prodded still ever onward, she sought relief by taking the sea route to Egypt (the Ionian), when upon arrival, Zeus was able to disenchant her. With Zeus, Io bears Apis, king of Egypt—identified with the historical pharaoh Apophis (*1575 – †1540, BC), and primogenitor of many of the ancient, semi-legendary great houses of the Mediterranean.  Among the most frequented bodies in the Solar System and well studied, inhospitable Io has been rather ignominiously described as having (the namesake—that is) the colour of pizza.

Saturday, 14 September 2019

rip eddie money (*1949 - †2019)

goulden eeuw

In attempts to be more inclusive, “polyphonic” about its storied past, Amsterdam’s museum system is dropping the non-contemporary term Golden Age from its exhibits going forward, instead using the label of seventeenth century.
While some are cautioning against judging the past by modern standards or historic revisionism, Rijksmusum director Taco Dibbits (previously) believes it is neither but rather tempering the celebration of the era when the Netherlands was at the forefront of trade, art and the sciences with the acknowledgement that not everyone was the beneficiaries and others paid the heavy toll of accomplishment—wars, exploitation and trafficking.

Friday, 13 September 2019


alltid öppet: McDonald’s franchises in Sweden (previously) install insect hotels in their signage and billboards

.xlsx: a concerning amount of scientific research contains data misinterpreted by spreadsheet software

glory to hong kong: protestors create their own anthem and rallying cry

metallic wood: researchers create a porous nickel-based matrix (see also) as strong as titanium though exceedingly light

schism: Pope Francis unafraid of conservative groups calling his leadership too progressive

k2-18β: astronomers detect water vapour in the atmosphere of a distant super earth that could harbour life as we know it

gravy train: bug-based pet food better for canine and feline companions and for the environment

Thursday, 12 September 2019

zwei plus vier

On this day in 1990, representatives of East and West Germany plus the Four Occupying Powers met in Moscow (previously) to sign the Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany (Vertrag über die abschließende Regelung in Bezug auf Deutschland).  In exchange for renouncing any territorial claims, like Kaliningrad, Gdansk and other concessions, and limiting its armed forces, France, the UK, the US and the Soviet Union relinquished their mandates on the respective countries—which although entered into the agreement as separate parties would ratify the treaty as one nation, the reunification process facilitated by the terms of the settlement.

ponderosa ranch

Running until 1973, the Western television series Bonanza (a Spanish mining term used on the discovery of a major lode of ore) premiered on NBC on this day in 1959. Set during and shortly after the US civil war, the programme, rather uniquely for its time, addressed pressing societal issues directly including racism and bigotry. For continuity and for the convenience of stunt-doubles, the recurring cast of this long-running show wore the same outfits each episode.

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

head and shoulders

We are introduced to the portfolio of photographer Max Siedentoph through his latest series on passport photos that zooms out from a headshot to limn what is going on out of frame. Take a further look outside of the box and peruse a whole gallery of what might lay beyond to discover and consider at the link above.

the ghost of a flea

Sadly unrecognised during his lifetime, poet, painter and free love advocate, William Blake (*1757 - †1827, see also here and here) produced a large and diverse body of work under the ethos that to exercise the human imagination and push its limits was itself next to godliness. Misunderstood and dismissed as mad, Blake’s single showing while still on this plane was disastrous, one critic calling him an ‘unfortunate lunatic whose personal inoffensiveness secures him from confinement.’
The retrospective exhibition currently at London‘s Tate Gallery (see also from friend of the blog, Nag on the Lake) is certainly a belated vilification and underscores the resonance of his vision.  Perhaps most well known for his illustration of The Book of Job and Dante’s Divine Comedy, like the pictured vignette of Capaneus the Blasphemer, a besieger of Thebes whom Zeus struck down with a lightning bolt for his arrogance, and is confined to the Seventh Circle of Hell with the other souls whom have committed violence against God, though the form of his extinction make him impervious to the torture of the flames and as a pagan he addresses the deity as Jove and still curses him. The titular episode refers to a miniature panel inspired by a vision that came to his friend and collaborator John Varley during a séance and evokes comparison to Henry Fuseli’s 1781 The Nightmare.


As if it wasn’t chilling enough that the grifter and bully in the White House would compel his own weather monitoring services to revise their forecast map to match his own mischaracterization, covertly disclosed communications suggest that United Nations’ International Organisation for Migration (IOM) is practising self-censorship in its agenda to skirt issues not aligned to US policy and politics for fear the US would pull funding and support. 

While it might be seen as just a shrewd measure by some at the organisation to de-emphasise certain points for the pitch and focus on climate change and sustainable growth any way, the agency is compromising itself too far by conceding—however superficially—to Trump and his outlook on the world.  A rather nominal philanthropic donation could ensure that the programme could maintain its independence and integrity for decades.

Tuesday, 10 September 2019


barman: a historic archive of drinks recipes and other pub paraphernalia via Pasa Bon!

warp and weave: in her O.P.P. (Other People’s Photography) series Heather Oeklaus creates woven photo collages from vintage film stills, via Kottke  

arboretum: an art collector (previously) plants trees in a football stadium in memoriam

on murder considered as one of the true fine arts: true crime superlatives from each state in America via Coudal Partners’ Quick Links

central perk: the theme song from Friends performed in minor key


The exhausting tedium of the Trump regime respecting nothing, it’s come to light that the US commerce secretary threatened staff at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency should they not recant and revise their hurricane forecast to match what the dullard Trump laughably drew on a map to extend the cone of probability into Alabama.
In order to preserve some sense of dignity in the federal government and its reputation, honouring instead of rubbishing the one kind of scientist—the meteorologist—that the public trusts and engages with on a regular basis, there are growing calls for the secretary himself to be dismissed or resign for this dangerous act of rank hypocrisy rather than stake everything on protecting the fragile ego of a man-baby.


With the Queen’s leave, after the longest session since the English Civil War, Boris Johnson suspended Parliament until just two weeks before the date that the UK is scheduled to depart the European Union.
Speaker of the House of Commons John Bercow resigned in protest, his last sentiment being that ‘we degrade this Parliament at our peril,’ a resounding rejection of Johnson’s argument for the extended recess, reasoning that the break was a time for reflection and reformulate legislative agendas and calls for a general election to break the impasse—also denied.  Like during a furlough, committees cannot convene or conduct official business without being in violation of their suspension, paralleling the law passed making Brexit contingent on a deal or otherwise risk being in contempt, which the prime minister is fully cognizant of and only serves to remind how tragic this whole squandering of time and resources and all encompassing has been.


On this day in 1919 signatories of the Allied Powers held a ceremony at the Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye to ratify the terms of the treaty (see also) that dictated the dissolution of the Austrian Empire.
The successor states, formerly kingdoms, duchies and counties were often not consulted and very few held referenda regarding their own separate sovereignty and rather had it thrust upon them with adjustment period to follow. Cisleitania—the unofficial designation for the territory around Vienna and roughly the present day republic, referring to this side of the River Leitha—that became a much diminished Österreich had previously not had a national character in terms of uniting language or ethnicity (not that borders are ever easily redrawn) and only had in common their allegiance to the House of Hapsburg.

Monday, 9 September 2019

jupiter v

Suggested as a good base of operations for exploration of its host world due to its proximity and near synchronised orbit and discovered on this day in 1892, Amalthea—the third moon of the jovian gas giant (see also here and here)—was the first natural satellite identified since Galilean quartet in 1610 and the last by direct observation.
Its discoverer Edward Emerson Barnard (*1857 - 1923, the same astronomer of the namesake star) following the established convention for Jupiter‘s constellation named it after the goat nymph that nursed infant Zeus, secreted away from his murderous father Cronus and the epithet meaning tender goddess in Greek. Still a baby and not realising his supernatural strength, Zeus accidentally broke off one of the horns of his foster mother, rendering her the first unicorn—a conceit echoed by later storytellers.  Placed among the stars in Capra, not to be conflated with the zodiacal sign, her broken horn became the cornucopia.  The designation did not become official until it was formally adopted (to replace the above) in 1976 ahead of the moon‘s rendezvous with the Voyager space probes.

Sunday, 8 September 2019

tag der offenen tür

The second Sunday in September marks the Day of Open Monuments (previously) all across Europe, and today we had the opportunity to visit a local landmark, the Ostheimer Kirchenburg, and inspect parts not normally accessible to the public.

Climbing up several levels on narrow wooden ladder, we got to see the original clockwork housed in the Waagglockenturm—so named as it used to also act as the city’s scales for weighing bushels of corn and other goods and the later repurposed counterweights powered the time-keeping mechanism, now installed at the Rathaus—and had a commanding view of the town below.
We also got to explore some of the networks of tunnels and storage space that connected all parts of the compound as well as the interior of the church with a chance to marvel at the eighteenth century pipe organ—complete with thirty-seven registers, designed by Johann Ernst Döring and biblical ceiling art by chief architect and engineer Nicolua Storant from 1615. Do you have any local landmarks hosting an open house today? If so, please do visit and share your impressions.


On this day in 1975, the cover of TIME magazine featured decorated Vietnam War veteran TSgt Leonard Matlovich (*1943 – †1988, see below), the first service member to out himself to protest the US military’s ban on gay and lesbian soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen.
The first time in the American press that the topic was seriously addressed in a national publication, Matlovich’s struggle to continue to serve in the Air Force openly was a very public battle and Matlovich along with Harvey Milk were likely the only openly gay men known to the American public during the decade. The branch secretary refused to relent, despite his record and reputation, and confirmed his general (though not other-than-honourable, given that the Air Force and other branches had fairly ill-defined regulations on the matter and considered extenuating circumstances common enough to recognise, like maturity, drunkenness or one-off experimentation—known as the “Queen for a Day” exception) discharge in October. Unrelenting, Matlovich fought the decision and five years later on appeal had his separation upgraded to honourable and received compensation and back-pay. Fellow Air Woman Reservist Fannie Mae Clackum (*1929 – †2014) had previously successfully sued for lost pay back in 1960.  A lifelong activist, he campaigned for equal rights until overcoming himself due to complications from AIDS/HIV and was interred in a special corner of Washington, DC’s Congressional Cemetery that he had helped establish.

hypertext and handbills

Via Kicks Condor, whom also inspected a heartening thread that’s been making the rounds that offered some proof that the much-winnowed but weird web (not just the recursive daisy-chains of social media redirects) is not just in the bailiwick of nostalgia but still around to be enjoyed and engaged—our attention is directed to another veteran internet caretaker in Cardhouse, which has a very long and uninterrupted history of curating the resonant and interesting. It’s certainly hard sometimes to resist the ease and instant reaction that comes with newer and fewer platforms (and know that I have succumbed to that siren-song as well) but knowing there is a fellowship of others out there makes us resilient and have the desire to keep going for ourselves and to give others the same momentum and security in knowing one has an outlet for sharing and a soapbox to stand on.
Having a platform of ones own, individuals shouldn’t seek the points-system and rely on the approval of others designed to maximise narrow participation. Much more of the classic web to explore at the links above.

Saturday, 7 September 2019

tetsuwan atomu

On this day in 1963, among many other events of note as our faithful chronicler informs, Astro Boy, the first animated cartoon series imported from Japanese markets, was first broadcast nationwide in the US.
Known domestically as Mighty Atom (鉄腕アトム) and airing in those markets from 1952 to 1968 with several subsequent revivals and syndications, the manga by Osamu Tezuka (*1928 – †1989) follows the adventures of an android, burdened with human emotions as a surrogate child, but is passed off by his creator to a robot circus when he strikes the father as inauthentic and unnatural, being ageless. A sympathetic professor saves him from the circus and tries to impart something of the abiding nature of humanity in him. Watch the first episode at Doctor Caligari’s Cabinet at the link up top.

insular majuscule

Though the Book of Kells is familiar enough to contemporary audiences so that its iconography and calligraphic style can be recognised and extrapolated, the ninth century national treasure on display at the Trinity College in Dublin since 1661, the character of the script, ornamentation and carpet pages filled with solid geometric patterns would not have been fixed in the imagination of the public had not it been for the efforts of one dedicated entomologist with a talent for painting to produce a volume of lithographic prints of the collected incunabula contemporary with the famous gospel.
John Obadiah Westwood (*1805 – †1893) published faithful reproductions of those illuminated manuscript but his keen and discerning eye trained to study the minute anatomy of fleas, mantises and moths was able to transmit those fine details to the casual observer above and beyond other picture book purveyors that tried to capitalise on the latest fashionable topic of study were able to do. The effectiveness of presentation of his 1868 contributed in no small part to bring about a sustained revival in Celtic culture and customs and had a profound influence on craft, arts and design in movements to come. Find a whole curated and sourced gallery of the historical pages copied as with a monk in a scriptorium working from something on loan that comprise Westwood’s survey of Anglo-Saxon and Irish at Public Domain Review at the link above.


Via Kottke, for this one-hundred-fiftieth anniversary year of the Periodic Table (previously here and here) we are directed to this comprehensive and engaging interactive article from Bloomberg magazine of the chemical elements, covering aspects from their discovery to how their availability informs geology, speculation and geopolitics. Much more to explore at the links above.


Dezeen reports that Death by Modernism has introduced a special emoji character set with a suite of Midcentury Modern emojis inspired by the creations of the Eames, Eero Saarinnen and more. Everything really is a skeuomorph.
There’s unfortunately only a few glyphs in the stylistic and architectural vernacular but we are certain that this is a good what to improve one’s messaging vocabulary and gives ones punctuation a distinctive and signature quality.

l’abbaye de landévennec

We’ve briefly touched on the abbey at Landévennec previously through its founder’s association with the myth of the City of Ys but both Saint Guénolé (Winwaloe, Gwenole, *460 - †532) and congregation of monks are worth addressing further on there own.
Son of Dumonian prince Fragan of Albany—Guénolé already had quite the saintly pedigree with reverend twin brothers and another canonised sibling besides and his mother Gwen Teirbron (Blanche in French or Alba Trimammis in Latin) who was revered as a Breton holy woman in her own right and with the colourful epithet meaning three-breasted, she was prayed to for fertility, venerated perhaps as a euhemerism of a more ancient mother goddess.

What was to become a Benedictine community from the eighth century until destroyed by Viking raids and then rebuilt in stone in the early 900s and then ultimately suppressed and its property sold off after the French Revolution (more here) was possessed of a great scriptorium and scrolls and early tomes.  
These archives included a rare medieval copy of the Notitia Digitatum—the late Roman Empire’s list of offices that addresses the administrative organisation of the court and provinces here presenting the shields from a register of military commands, the iconography and the ornament that bears a resemblance to the yin-and-yang symbol—the Taijitu—having evolved independently and from different traditions centuries before Taoist use, that were preserved.
Along with a wealth of other artefacts that were reunited after centuries of separation by the order in 1950 with the ancient site reconsecrated in a sense and opened as a museum with the brothers taking up residence in a new abbey just outside of the village.

Friday, 6 September 2019


Sensitive to the huge problem of food waste, an enterprising bakery in Iceland has installed a superannuated telephone booth on its premises in which to deposit the leftovers from the end of the day and offer them for sale to late-comers on a trust system at a deeply discounted price. Local patrons are delighted with the idea of being able to get fresh breads afterhours and help reduce what would otherwise end up in landfills. I hope more small businesses might take a cue from this bakery and invest in the honour and integrity of shoppers and right-sizing production.


cheese whey wine: this proposal does not exact merit the enthusiasm of either turophiles nor œnologists

nessie: DNA evidence suggest that the monster of Loch Ness might be a colony of giant eels

mensch-maschine: watch limber, articulate but abstract robots mimic human motion

an englishman in new york: a biographical look at the life and times of Quentin Crisp (previously)

cloverleaf: a gallery of freeway interchanges (previously), via Present /&/ Correct  

formaggio ubriaco: bringing it full circle, this delicacy from Treviso sounds more palatable

Thursday, 5 September 2019


In addition to its own version of the Arthurian saga, the western part of Bretagne on the peninsula of Crozon, once known as Cournouallie with the same etymology as Cornwall across the Channel, has its own legendary cast of characters including Gradlon the Great (Gradlon Meur). A soldier of fortune courted by a sorcerous consort of a dying king called Malgven—who talked Gradlon into giving the old king a coup de grâce and ruling with her.
This cautionary tale continues with Malgven dying during childbirth with the couple’s daughter Dahut, a most unnatural and ungrateful child. Having established himself as an otherwise sage and just ruler—despite his earlier act of regicide, Gradlon commissioned the building of a fantastic city built on land reclaimed from the sea (Kêr Ys, low city), lavishly ornamented and with no expense spared, the waters held back by a system of dykes for which only Gradlon had the key to open the floodgates.
Over the years, Dahut had grown frivolous and vain and was wiled by a suitor to grant him access to Ys. Rather punch-drunk with her success of secreting away the key from her father and thinking she was throwing open the city gate, a torrent of water rushed in. The king was roused by a very historical bishop called Gwenole, who keeping vespers in the night and saw the flood waters rise and was beatified as founding bishop of the abbey of Landévennec (see also and when I first saw the ruin it reminded me of this amphitheatre on the Cornish coast that we visited and upon leaving the town, saw it was in fact twinned—jumelage—with The Lizard (An Lysardh), that peninsula in southern Cornwall.

The king took to his steed and rescued Dahut while the rest of the Ys’ people drowned. Dahut (I’d quite like to hear her version of the story) fell from the horse during the escape and was transformed into a mermaid, still haunting the Bay of Douarnenez to this day and luring sailors to violent ends against the cliffs with her siren song.

susan spotless says every litter bit hurts

Not to discount or dismiss the role of consumer-choice and the positive impact of reduction and reuse—and recycling programmes that are honest-brokers and not more greenwashing out-of-hand, but the manufacturing industry behind throw-away society has managed to deflect attention from itself and conveniently shift the onus and the guilt of pollution and over-consumption from themselves—saving their bottom-line, to the public.
Thoughline shows how industry launched a major re-education campaign to convince the public there was little need for thrift and re-use and to accept the single-use paradigm, seemingly enraged and enervated when the state of Vermont enacted legislation that outlawed the sale disposable glass-bottles, since they were ending up in pastures and the broken shards were dangerous for livestock gazing there. Fully aware of the down-stream effects of their actions and to sustain their profligacy as long as possible, food and beverage makers turned to the Ad Council to craft public sentiment with mascots (to include first that insufferable scolding child above, Lassie the television canine, and later Iron Eyes Cody, “the Crying Indian”) and public service announcements that make the disposable not just more palatable but patriotic (see also here, here and here). Their efforts have been pretty successful and tenacious, people internalising the message that our own greed, laziness and carelessness are the biggest contributors to the climate crisis and not industry or governments too cowed or complicit to regulate them. Listen to more episodes at the link above and subscribe for more disabusing origin stories.

Wednesday, 4 September 2019

genomkörning på svenska

Whilst some organisations have taken to deputising fast-food franchises with plenipotentiary and consular powers, we discover that a few such outposts in Sweden (fifty-five at least) are installing drive-thru charging stations for electric vehicles to supplement the coverage of state-sponsored infrastructure that leaves just enough gaps as to dissuade some drivers from committing to this other mode of transportation. While a full re-charge takes a bit longer than fulfilling one’s order, it still offers a nice alternative and adds extra value to queuing up.

first do no harm

We really appreciated this primer on cultivating the practise of meditation and mindfulness from Open Culture and found the segue, introducing our urge to conflate what’s by its nature simple with what’s easy and effortless, especially resonant and a draws one into reading the rest of the article.
Easier said than done, vice is far more amenable to marketing and branding than virtue, and our intuitive senses fail us along with patience and persistence and the advice we dispense to ourselves.  Like misapprehending the better for the Good, we imperil ourselves with overexposure to the vulnerabilities of denying gradualism in favour of the illusion of big and sudden change and instant results.  We cannot avail our compassion, I think without some impossibly big ask of enlightenment that’s unreasonable to expect of novices just muddling through, for institutional, caretaker sort of change and progress without sacrificing or compromising something of ourselves.  Much more to contemplate at the link up top.


The region of Bretagne is particularly dense with prehistoric megalithic structures and though not seeing the largest collection assembled at Carnac, we were still able to inspect quite a few of the amazing sites up close and all to ourselves. The biggest formation was in Camaret-sur-Mer, a row of seventy-two menhirs called the Alignement de Lagat-Jar (the Breton word for the monoliths) said to have inspired René Goscinny to create his Astérix le Gaulois and Obelix characters (adventures set in the Roman province of Armorica) when the author first saw this enchanted spot.
We stumbled across other dolmen too in fields and forests, once encountering local dog walkers (Kerloaz in Plouarzhel) that had a particular, ritual way of greeting the great stone.  Of some three-thousand once catalogued, only around seven hundred remain standing in situ, displaced for roadway construction or used as building materials. Surely not cannibalised from ancient sites, memorials like this French naval monument evoke the area‘s wealth of standing stones. Six to seven thousand years old, their purpose is a matter of speculation though the Matter of Britain (and the Matter of Brittany which has its own version of the legend) accounts for the precision and straightness of the lines due to the fact that they were Roman soldiers on the march, turned to stone by Merlin or were the artefacts of giants.