SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Akathist

An Akathist Hymn is a type of hymn recited by Eastern Orthodox or Eastern Catholic Christians, dedicated to a saint, holy event, or one of the persons of the Holy Trinity. The name derives from the fact that during the chanting of the hymn, or sometimes the whole service, the congregation is expected to remain standing in reverence, without sitting down, except for the aged or infirm. During Eastern Catholic and Orthodox Christian religious services in general, standing and the making of prostrations are set by an intricate set of rules, as well as individual discretion. Only during readings of the Gospel and the singing of Akathists is standing considered mandatory for all; the Akathist is known by the first three words of its prooimion, Te upermacho stratego addressed to the announcing Archangel. The akathist par excellence is the one written during the seventh century for the feast of Annunciation of the Theotokos; this kontakion was traditionally attributed to Romanos the Melodist since kontakia of Romanos dominated the classical repertoire 80 kontakia sung during the cathedral rite of the Hagia Sophia, though recent scholarship rejects this authorship like in case of many other kontakia of the core repertoire.

The exceptional case of the Akathist is that the Greek original consists of 24 oikoi, each one beginning with the next letter of the alphabet. Due to the excessive length the kontakion became truncated like the others, but the earliest chant books with musical notation have the complete text of all 24 oikoi written out, but the last 23 oikoi without musical notation. Since the 14th century the Akathist moved from the menaion to the moveable cycle of the triodion, the custom established that the whole hymn was sung in four sections throughout Lent; as such it became part of the service of the Salutations to the Theotokos. Another particular characteristic feature of the Akathist is the extraordinary length of the refrain or ephymnion which conists of a great number of verses beginning with χαῖρε which are called in Greek Chairetismoi or in Arabic Madayeh, respectively; the chairetismoi are only repeated in every second oikos, from a musical point of view the ephymnion consists just of a short musical phrase, either about the last χαῖρε verse or about allelouia.

The writing of akathists developed within the Slavic traditions as a genre of its own as part of the general composition of an akolouthia, although not all compositions are known nor translated beyond the original language. Reader Isaac E. Lambertsen has done a large amount of translation work, including many different akathists. Most of the newer akathists are pastiche, that is, a generic form imitating the original 6th-century akathist to the Theotokos into which a particular saint's name is inserted. In the Greek and Russian Old Rite traditions, the only akathist permitted in formal liturgical use is the original akathist. Apart from its usual dedication to the menaion and the early custom to celebrate kontakia during the Pannychis, the Akathist had the political function to celebrate military victories or to ask during wars for divine protection intermediated by prayers of the Theotokos; this function is reflected within the synaxarion. According to the synaxary the origin of the feast is assigned by the Synaxarion to the year 626, when Constantinople, in the reign of Heraclius, was attacked by the Persians and Avars but saved through the intervention of the Most Holy Theotokos.

A sudden hurricane dispersed the fleet of the enemy, casting the vessels on the shore near the Great church of the Theotokos at Blachernae, a quarter of Constantinople inside the Golden Horn. The people says the account, thanking her for the unexpected deliverance. "From that time, the Church, in memory of so great and so divine a miracle, desired this day to be a feast in honour of the Mother of God... and called it Acathistus". This origin is disputed by Sophocles on the ground that the hymn could not have been composed in one day, while on the other hand its twenty-four oikoi contain no allusion to such an event and therefore could scarcely have been composed to commemorate it; the kontakion, which might seem to be allusive, was composed for the celebration on the night of the victory. However the feast may have originated, the Synaxarion commemorates two other victories, under Leo III the Isaurian, Constantine Pogonatus ascribed to the intervention of the Theotokos. No certain ascription of its authorship can be made.

It has been attributed to Patriarch Sergius I of Constantinople, whose pious activities the Synaxarion commemorates in great detail. Quercius assigns it to George Pisida, deacon and sacristan of Hagia Sophia whose poems find an echo both in style and in theme in the Akathist, his position as sacristan would suggest such a tribute to the Theotokos, as the hymn only gives more elaborately the sentiments condensed into two epigrams of Pisida found in her church at Blachernae. Quercius argues that words and sentences of the hymn are to be found in the poetry of Pisida. Leclercq (i

Putter

A putter is a club used in the sport of golf to make short and low-speed strokes with the intention of rolling the ball into the hole from a short distance away. It is differentiated from the other clubs by a clubhead with a flat, low-profile, low-loft striking face, by other features which are only allowed on putters, such as bent shafts, non-circular grips, positional guides. Putters are used from close distances to the cup on the putting green, though certain courses have fringes and roughs near the green which are suitable for putting. While no club in a player's bag is indispensable nor required to be carried by strict rules, the putter comes closest, it is a specialized tool for a specific job, no golfer is without one. Putting is the most precise aspect of the game of golf; the putter must be designed to give the golfer every technical advantage including smooth stroke, good glide, sweet impact, bounce-less topspin ball launch as well as every technique advantage including perfect fit as to shaft angle and length.

The striking face of a putter is not perpendicular to the ground: putters have a small amount of loft, intended to "lift" the ball out of any depression it has made or settled into on the green, which reduces bouncing. This loft is 5–6°, by strict rules cannot be more than 10°; the putter is the only club that may have a grip, not round. The putter is the only club allowed to have a bent shaft; this increases accuracy as the golfer can direct their swing through the ball, without feeling like they are behind it. Many putters have an offset hosel, which places the shaft of the club in line with the center of the ball at impact, again to improve stability and feel as, combined with the vertical bend, the shaft will point directly into the center of the ball at impact. Putters were known as "putting cleeks" and were made from woods such as beech and hazel. In the 1900s putters heads evolved, with iron club heads becoming a more popular design; the design of the putter's club head has undergone radical changes since the late 1950s.

Putters were a forged iron piece similar in shape to the irons of the day. One of the first to apply scientific principles to golf club design was engineer Karsten Solheim. In 1959 instead of attaching the shaft at the heel of the blade, Solheim attached it in the center, transferring much of the weight of the club head to the perimeter. Club design had been based on trial and error. Through attempts to lower the center of gravity of the club head, it evolved into a shorter, thicker head curved from front to rear; the introduction of investment casting for club heads allowed drastically different shapes to be made far more and cheaply than with forging, resulting in several design improvements. First of all, the majority of mass behind the clubface was placed as low as possible, resulting in an L-shaped side profile with a thin, flat club face and another thin block along the bottom of the club behind the face. Additionally, peripheral weighting, or the placing of mass as far away from the center of the clubface as possible, increases the moment of inertia of the club head, reducing twisting if the club contacts the ball off-center and thus giving the club a larger "sweet spot" with which to contact the ball.

Newer innovations include replacing the metal at the "sweet spot" with a softer metal or polymer compound that will give and rebound at impact, which increases the peak impulse imparted to the ball for better distance. Putters are subdivided into peripheral weighted and blade styles. Power instability and practice/play convertibility are features embodied in the latest putter design technology. Though most putters have a 32-to-35-inch shaft, putters are made with longer shaft lengths and grips, are designed to reduce the "degrees of freedom" allowed a player when he or she putts; the more joints that can bend or twist during the putting motion, the more degrees of freedom a player has when putting, which gives more flexibility and feel but can result in more inconsistent putts. With a normal putter, the player has six degrees of freedom: hands, elbows, shoulders and knees, all of which can be moved just to affect the path of the ball and prevent a putt from falling in the cup; such motions nervous uncontrollable motions, are called "yips", having a chronic case of the "yips" can ruin a golfer's short game.

German professional golfer Bernhard Langer is famous for having such a severe case that he once needed four putts to hole out from within three feet of the cup. A belly putter is about 6 to 8 inches longer than a normal putter and is designed to be "anchored" against the abdomen of the player; this design reduces or removes the importance of the hands, wrists and shoulders. A long putter is longer and is designed to be anchored from the chest or the chin and reduces the impact of the hands, wrists and shoulders; the disadvantages are decreased feel and control ove