Wednesday, 6 May 2020


As much as these days can seem rather untethered, time still marches forward and Messy Nessy Chic brings us a thought-provoking survey of some of the myriad ways that civilisation has tried to regulate and legislate the cycles of the Sun and Moon.
One will encounter some of the earliest attempts to figure human reckoning, superstition and experience with cosmology and the progression of the seasons—and whether indeed time’s arrow isn’t a flat circle that brings everything around again, to efforts to install decimal time (or at least one that followed more regular rules) and the French Revolutionary Calendar plus other ways of resetting the clock. A chronogram, incidentally, is a headstone, plaque or commemoration that one sometimes encounters with those seemingly random capitalised or illuminated letters, like in the more straightforward epitaph for Elizabeth I of England: My Day Closed Is In Immortality—or, MDCIII corresponding to 1603, the year of her death or in lengthier passages called chronosticha on buildings that relate a parable and record when construction was completed.