Brentford is a town in western Greater London, the contested county town of Middlesex and part of the London Borough of Hounslow. It lies at the confluence of the River Brent and the Thames, 8 miles west-by-southwest of Charing Cross, it has formed part of Greater London since 1965. Its economy has diverse company headquarters buildings. Brentford has a convenience dining venue grid of streets at its centre. Brentford at the start of the 21st century attracted regeneration of its little-used warehouse premises and docks including the re-modelling of the waterfront to provide more economically active shops and apartments, some of which comprises Brentford Dock. A 19th and 20th centuries mixed social and private housing locality: New Brentford is contiguous with the Osterley neighbourhood of Isleworth and Syon Park and the Great West Road which has most of the largest business premises; the name is recorded as Breguntford in 705 in an Anglo-Saxon charter and means'ford over the River Brent'. The name of the river is Celtic and means'holy one' and the'-ford' suffix is Old English.
The ford was most located where the main road crossed the river. New Brentford is recorded as Newe Braynford in 1521 and was known as Westbraynford. Old Brentford is recorded as Old Braynford in 1476 and was known as Estbraynford; the settlement pre-dates the Roman occupation of Britain, thus pre-dates the founding of London itself. Many pre-Roman artifacts have been excavated in and around the area in Brentford known as'Old England'. Bronze Age pottery and burnt flints have been found in separate sites in Brentford; the quality and quantity of the artefacts suggests that Brentford was a meeting point for pre-Romanic tribes. One well known Iron Age piece from about 100 BC – AD 50 is the Brentford horn-cap – a ceremonial chariot fitting that formed part of local antiquarian Thomas Layton's collection, now held by the Museum of London; the Celtic knot pattern on this item has been copied for use on modern jewellery. Brentford is the first point on the tidal portion of the River Thames, fordable by foot.
For this reason it has been suggested that Julius Cæsar crossed the Thames here during his invasion of Britain in 54 BC, the Brentford Monument outside the County Court asserts that a battle took place here at this time between Cæsar's forces and Cassivellaunus. In his own account, Cæsar writes that he crossed the river 80 miles from the sea, Brentford is this distance from his supposed landing beach, he further states. During the building of Brentford Dock many such oak stakes were discovered. Dredging the river uncovered so many more that they had to be removed, for they were a hazard to navigation. Although Cæsar's descriptions are compelling, there has been no archaeological proof that this was the spot where he and his army had to fight to cross, it must be kept in mind that Julius Cæsar's own accounts suffered in some part to his embellishment of the facts. A local town fair, called the Brentford Festival, has been held in Brentford every September since 1900; the building of Brentford Dock was started in 1855 and it was formally opened in 1859.
The dock yard is now housing estate. A notable family from Brentford was the 18th/19th century architectural father and son partnership, the Hardwicks. Thomas Hardwick Senior and Thomas Hardwick Junior were both from Brentford and are buried in the old church of St Laurence. Hardwick Senior was the master mason for the Adam Brothers during the construction of Syon House. Hardwick Junior assisted in the building of Somerset House and was known for his designs of churches in the capital, he was a tutor of J. M. W Turner whom he helped start Turner's illustrious career in art. Both father and son did a great deal of rebuilding on the church of St Laurence. 54 BC Brentford is a site of a battle recorded by Julius Cæsar between Julius Cæsar and the local king, Cassivellaunus. 781 Council of Brentford recording settlement of a dispute between King Offa of Mercia, the Bishop of Worcester 1016 Battle of Brentford between the invading Canute and Edmund Ironside 1431 Relocation of Syon Abbey to Brentford from Twickenham 1539 Destruction of Syon Abbey by King Henry VIII 1616 – 1617 Pocahontas, Pamunkey princess, resided in Brentford with her husband, John Rolfe and son Thomas.
1642 Battle of Brentford during the English Civil War 1682 A violent storm of rain, accompanied with thunder and lightning, caused a sudden flood, which did great damage to the town of Brentford. The whole place was overflown. 1717 Brentford Turnpike Trust founded to maintain the road between Kensington and Hounslow 1756 Ronalds nursery established by Hugh Ronalds' father on Brentford High Street 1805 Start of operations of the Grand Junction Canal 1806 James Montgomrey’s father James Montgomrey Snr commenced operating a large timber mill at Montgomrey's Wharf, a yard occupied by his cousin 1815 – 1817 John Quincy Adams, sixth President of the US, lived in Brentford. 1828 William Corder was arrested on Wednesday 23 April at Everley Grove House, Ealing Lane in Brentford, for the notorious Red Barn Murder. 1841 Brentford was flooded, caused by the Brent Reservoir becoming overfull so that the overflow cut a breach in the earth dam. Sev
Central Intelligence Agency
The Central Intelligence Agency is a civilian foreign intelligence service of the federal government of the United States, tasked with gathering and analyzing national security information from around the world through the use of human intelligence. As one of the principal members of the United States Intelligence Community, the CIA reports to the Director of National Intelligence and is focused on providing intelligence for the President and Cabinet of the United States. Unlike the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a domestic security service, the CIA has no law enforcement function and is focused on overseas intelligence gathering, with only limited domestic intelligence collection. Though it is not the only agency of the Federal government of the United States specializing in HUMINT, the CIA serves as the national manager for coordination of HUMINT activities across the U. S. intelligence community. Moreover, the CIA is the only agency authorized by law to carry out and oversee covert action at the behest of the President.
It exerts foreign political influence through its tactical divisions, such as the Special Activities Division. Before the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004, the CIA Director concurrently served as the head of the Intelligence Community. Despite transferring some of its powers to the DNI, the CIA has grown in size as a result of the September 11 attacks. In 2013, The Washington Post reported that in fiscal year 2010, the CIA had the largest budget of all IC agencies, exceeding previous estimates; the CIA has expanded its role, including covert paramilitary operations. One of its largest divisions, the Information Operations Center, has shifted focus from counter-terrorism to offensive cyber-operations; when the CIA was created, its purpose was to create a clearinghouse for foreign policy intelligence and analysis. Today its primary purpose is to collect, analyze and disseminate foreign intelligence, to perform covert actions. According to its fiscal 2013 budget, the CIA has five priorities: Counterterrorism, the top priority Nonproliferation of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction.
Warning/informing American leaders of important overseas events. Counterintelligence Cyber intelligence; the CIA has an executive office and five major directorates: The Directorate of Digital Innovation The Directorate of Analysis The Directorate of Operations The Directorate of Support The Directorate of Science and Technology The Director of the Central Intelligence Agency is appointed by the President with Senate confirmation and reports directly to the Director of National Intelligence. The Deputy Director is formally appointed by the Director without Senate confirmation, but as the President's opinion plays a great role in the decision, the Deputy Director is considered a political position, making the Chief Operating Officer the most senior non-political position for CIA career officers; the Executive Office supports the U. S. military by providing it with information it gathers, receiving information from military intelligence organizations, cooperates on field activities. The Executive Director is in charge of the day-to-day operation of the CIA.
Each branch of the military service has its own Director. The Associate Director of military affairs, a senior military officer, manages the relationship between the CIA and the Unified Combatant Commands, who produce and deliver to the CIA regional/operational intelligence and consume national intelligence produced by the CIA; the Directorate of Analysis, through much of its history known as the Directorate of Intelligence, is tasked with helping "the President and other policymakers make informed decisions about our country's national security" by looking "at all the available information on an issue and organiz it for policymakers". The Directorate has four regional analytic groups, six groups for transnational issues, three that focus on policy and staff support. There is an office dedicated to Iraq; the Directorate of Operations is responsible for collecting foreign intelligence, for covert action. The name reflects its role as the coordinator of human intelligence activities between other elements of the wider U.
S. intelligence community with their own HUMINT operations. This Directorate was created in an attempt to end years of rivalry over influence and budget between the United States Department of Defense and the CIA. In spite of this, the Department of Defense organized its own global clandestine intelligence service, the Defense Clandestine Service, under the Defense Intelligence Agency; this Directorate is known to be organized by geographic regions and issues, but its precise organization is classified. The Directorate of Science & Technology was established to research and manage technical collection disciplines and equipment. Many of its innovations were transferred to other intelligence organizations, or, as they became more overt, to the military services. For example, the development of the U-2 high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft was done in cooperation with the United States Air
The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail
The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail is a book by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln. The book was first published in 1982 by Jonathan Cape in London as an unofficial follow-up to three BBC Two TV documentaries that were part of the Chronicle series; the paperback version was first published in 1983 by Corgi books. A sequel to the book, called The Messianic Legacy, was published in 1986; the original work was reissued in an illustrated hardcover version with new material in 2005. In The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, the authors put forward a hypothesis that the historical Jesus married Mary Magdalene, had one or more children, that those children or their descendants emigrated to what is now southern France. Once there, they intermarried with the noble families that would become the Merovingian dynasty, whose special claim to the throne of France is championed today by a secret society called the Priory of Sion, they concluded that the legendary Holy Grail is the womb of Mary Magdalene and the sacred royal bloodline she gave birth to.
An international bestseller upon its release, The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail spurred interest in a number of ideas related to its central thesis. Response from professional historians and scholars from related fields was negative, they argued that the bulk of the claims, ancient mysteries, conspiracy theories presented as facts are pseudohistorical. The book's ideas were considered blasphemous enough for the book to be banned in some Catholic countries. In a 1982 review of the book for The Observer and literary critic Anthony Burgess wrote: "It is typical of my unregenerable soul that I can only see this as a marvellous theme for a novel." Indeed, the theme was used by Margaret Starbird in her 1993 book The Woman with the Alabaster Jar, by Dan Brown in his 2003 novel The Da Vinci Code. One of the books that the authors claim influenced the project was L'Or de Rennes, a 1967 book by Gérard de Sède, with the collaboration of Pierre Plantard. After reading it, Henry Lincoln persuaded BBC Two's factual television series of the 1970s, Chronicle, to make a series of documentaries, which became quite popular and generated thousands of responses.
Lincoln joined forces with Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh for further research. This led them to the pseudohistorical Dossiers Secrets at the Bibliothèque nationale de France which, though alleging to portray hundreds of years of medieval history, were all written by Pierre Plantard and Philippe de Chérisey under the pseudonym of "Philippe Toscan du Plantier". Unaware that the documents had been forged, Baigent and Lincoln used them as a major source for their book. Comparing themselves to the reporters who uncovered the Watergate scandal, the authors maintain that only through speculative "synthesis can one discern the underlying continuity, the unified and coherent fabric, which lies at the core of any historical problem." To do so, one must realize that "it is not sufficient to confine oneself to facts." In The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, Baigent and Lincoln posit the existence of a secret society known as the Priory of Sion, supposed to have a long history starting in 1099 and had illustrious Grand Masters including Leonardo da Vinci and Isaac Newton.
According to the authors' claims, the Priory of Sion is devoted to installing the Merovingian dynasty, which ruled the Franks from 457 to 751, on the thrones of France and the rest of Europe. It is said to have created the Knights Templar as its military arm and financial branch; the authors re-interpreted the Dossiers Secrets "in the light of their own Biblical obsessions." Contrary to Plantard's initial Franco-Israelist claim that the Merovingians were only descended from the Tribe of Benjamin, they asserted that the Priory of Sion protects Merovingian dynasts because they are the lineal descendants of the historical Jesus and his alleged wife, Mary Magdalene, traced further back to King David. According to them, the legendary Holy Grail is the womb of saint Mary Magdalene and the sacred royal bloodline she gave birth to, the Church tried to kill off all remnants of this bloodline and their supposed guardians, the Cathars and the Templars, in order for popes to hold the episcopal throne through the apostolic succession of Peter without fear of it being usurped by an antipope from the hereditary succession of Mary Magdalene.
The authors therefore concluded that the modern goals of the Priory of Sion are: the public revelation of the tomb and shrine of Sigebert IV as well as the lost treasure of the Temple in Jerusalem, which contains genealogical records that prove the Merovingian dynasty was of the Davidic line, to facilitate Merovingian restoration in France. The authors incorporated the antisemitic and anti-Masonic tract known as The Protocols of the Elders of Zion into their story, concluding that it was based on the master plan of the Priory of Sion, they presented it as the most persuasive piece of evidence for the existence and activities of the Priory of Sion by arguing that the original text on which the published version of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion was based had nothing to do with Judaism or an "international Jewish conspiracy", as it issued from a
Henry Lincoln is a British author, television presenter and actor. He co-wrote three Doctor Who multi-part serials in the 1960s, — starting in the 1970s — inspired three Chronicle BBC Two documentaries on the alleged "mysteries" surrounding the French village of Rennes-le-Château — and from the 1980s on co-authored and authored a series of books of which, the pseudohistorical The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail was the most popular, becoming the inspiration for Dan Brown's 2003 best-selling novel, The Da Vinci Code. Lincoln was studied acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Under his original name of Henry Soskin, he worked as supporting actor. In 1964 he wrote one of the episodes of The Barnstormers, as well as starring in two of the episodes. Lincoln appeared in other television series such as The Avengers, The Saint, Man in a Suitcase, The Champions, he was co-writer, with Mervyn Haisman, of three Doctor Who stories starring Patrick Troughton: The Abominable Snowmen, The Web of Fear and The Dominators and retained the rights to the recurring character Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart.
Lincoln wrote and presented documentaries on other subjects such as The Man in the Iron Mask, The Curse of the Pharaohs, The Cathars. In 1969, while on holiday in the Cévennes, Lincoln happened to read Le Trésor Maudit de Rennes-le-Château, a book by Gérard de Sède about an alleged hidden treasure; the book reproduced copies of Latin parchments, found by a priest within a pillar of a local church. Inspired by what appeared to be secret codes hidden in the Latin text, Lincoln did some research about the parchments and a possible treasure, writing several books presenting his theories about the area, he presented three documentaries in the Chronicle series for BBC2: "The Lost Treasure of Jerusalem", shown in February 1972, "The Priest, the Painter and the Devil", shown in October 1974, "The Shadow of the Templars", shown in November 1979. One of the alleged parchments involved a series of raised letters throughout its Latin text, spelling out a message: À Dagobert II Roi et à Sion est ce trésor et il est là mort.
This referred to the Merovingian king Dagobert II, assassinated without a direct heir in the 7th century, thereby ending his branch of the dynasty. Research, showed that de Sède's book had been written at the instigation of Pierre Plantard as part of an elaborate hoax to promote a society known as the Priory of Sion, Plantard claimed to be descended from Dagobert II. Pierre Plantard died in 2000. Lincoln is best known for being one of the co-authors of the controversial 1982 best-seller The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail. During the mid-1970s, while Lincoln was lecturing at a summer school, he met Richard Leigh, an American fiction writer. Leigh introduced him to Michael Baigent, a New Zealand photo-journalist, working on a project about the Knights Templar; the three discovered that they shared a common interest in the Knights Templar, between them developed a theory that Jesus Christ had started a bloodline that had intermarried with the Frankish Merovingian royal dynasty. The three of them took their theory on the road during the 1970s in a series of lectures that developed into the 1982 book, The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, which became a best-seller and popularised the theory that Jesus had fathered a still extant and powerful bloodline, was all tied together by a fake secret society known as the Priory of Sion.
These ideas were used as the basis of Dan Brown's novel The Da Vinci Code. The book has been described as "a work debunked by scholars and critics alike". Arthurian scholar Richard Barber has commented, "It would take a book as long as the original to refute and dissect The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail point by point: it is a text which proceeds by innuendo, not by refutable scholarly debate"; some of the ideas presented in The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, were incorporated in the best-selling American novel The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown. In March 2006, Baigent and Leigh filed a lawsuit in a British court against Brown's publisher, Random House, claiming copyright infringement. On 7 April, High Court judge Peter Smith rejected the copyright-infringement claim, Brown won the court case. Lincoln was not involved in the proceedings due to illness. However, in the Channel Five documentary Revealed... The Man behind the Da Vinci Code, Lincoln stated that he did not wish to take part in the proceedings because the ideas brought forth in Holy Blood were not original themselves, Brown's actions could only be described as, "a bit naughty".
An earlier novel had used the theme of a Jesus bloodline: The Dreamer of the Vine, by Liz Greene, published in 1980. In 1993, Lincoln wrote and presented the four-episode TV-series The Secret, produced and directed by Erling Haagensen; the series presented elements of Lincoln's lifelong research on Rennes-le-Château, such as an alleged link between the area
OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Incorporated d/b/a OCLC is an American nonprofit cooperative organization "dedicated to the public purposes of furthering access to the world's information and reducing information costs". It was founded in 1967 as the Ohio College Library Center. OCLC and its member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the largest online public access catalog in the world. OCLC is funded by the fees that libraries have to pay for its services. OCLC maintains the Dewey Decimal Classification system. OCLC began in 1967, as the Ohio College Library Center, through a collaboration of university presidents, vice presidents, library directors who wanted to create a cooperative computerized network for libraries in the state of Ohio; the group first met on July 5, 1967 on the campus of the Ohio State University to sign the articles of incorporation for the nonprofit organization, hired Frederick G. Kilgour, a former Yale University medical school librarian, to design the shared cataloging system.
Kilgour wished to merge the latest information storage and retrieval system of the time, the computer, with the oldest, the library. The plan was to merge the catalogs of Ohio libraries electronically through a computer network and database to streamline operations, control costs, increase efficiency in library management, bringing libraries together to cooperatively keep track of the world's information in order to best serve researchers and scholars; the first library to do online cataloging through OCLC was the Alden Library at Ohio University on August 26, 1971. This was the first online cataloging by any library worldwide. Membership in OCLC is based on use of services and contribution of data. Between 1967 and 1977, OCLC membership was limited to institutions in Ohio, but in 1978, a new governance structure was established that allowed institutions from other states to join. In 2002, the governance structure was again modified to accommodate participation from outside the United States.
As OCLC expanded services in the United States outside Ohio, it relied on establishing strategic partnerships with "networks", organizations that provided training and marketing services. By 2008, there were 15 independent United States regional service providers. OCLC networks played a key role in OCLC governance, with networks electing delegates to serve on the OCLC Members Council. During 2008, OCLC commissioned two studies to look at distribution channels. In early 2009, OCLC negotiated new contracts with the former networks and opened a centralized support center. OCLC provides bibliographic and full-text information to anyone. OCLC and its member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat—the OCLC Online Union Catalog, the largest online public access catalog in the world. WorldCat has holding records from private libraries worldwide; the Open WorldCat program, launched in late 2003, exposed a subset of WorldCat records to Web users via popular Internet search and bookselling sites.
In October 2005, the OCLC technical staff began a wiki project, WikiD, allowing readers to add commentary and structured-field information associated with any WorldCat record. WikiD was phased out; the Online Computer Library Center acquired the trademark and copyrights associated with the Dewey Decimal Classification System when it bought Forest Press in 1988. A browser for books with their Dewey Decimal Classifications was available until July 2013; until August 2009, when it was sold to Backstage Library Works, OCLC owned a preservation microfilm and digitization operation called the OCLC Preservation Service Center, with its principal office in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The reference management service QuestionPoint provides libraries with tools to communicate with users; this around-the-clock reference service is provided by a cooperative of participating global libraries. Starting in 1971, OCLC produced catalog cards for members alongside its shared online catalog. OCLC commercially sells software, such as CONTENTdm for managing digital collections.
It offers the bibliographic discovery system WorldCat Discovery, which allows for library patrons to use a single search interface to access an institution's catalog, database subscriptions and more. OCLC has been conducting research for the library community for more than 30 years. In accordance with its mission, OCLC makes its research outcomes known through various publications; these publications, including journal articles, reports and presentations, are available through the organization's website. OCLC Publications – Research articles from various journals including Code4Lib Journal, OCLC Research, Reference & User Services Quarterly, College & Research Libraries News, Art Libraries Journal, National Education Association Newsletter; the most recent publications are displayed first, all archived resources, starting in 1970, are available. Membership Reports – A number of significant reports on topics ranging from virtual reference in libraries to perceptions about library funding. Newsletters – Current and archived newsletters for the library and archive community.
Presentations – Presentations from both guest speakers and OCLC research from conferences and other events. The presentations are organized into five categories: Conference presentations, Dewey presentations, Distinguished Seminar Series, Guest presentations, Research staff
Rosslyn Chapel, formally known as the Collegiate Chapel of St Matthew, is a 15th-century chapel located in the village of Roslin, Scotland. Rosslyn Chapel was founded on a small hill above Roslin Glen as a Catholic collegiate church in the mid-15th century; the chapel was founded by William Sinclair, 1st Earl of Caithness of the Scoto-Norman Sinclair family. Rosslyn Chapel is the third Sinclair place of worship at Roslin, the first being in Roslin Castle and the second in what is now Roslin Cemetery. Sinclair founded the college to celebrate the Divine Office throughout the day and night, to celebrate Masses for all the faithful departed, including the deceased members of the Sinclair family. During this period, the rich heritage of plainsong or polyphony were used to enrich the singing of the liturgy. Sinclair provided an endowment to pay for the support of the choristers in perpetuity; the priests had parochial responsibilities. After the Scottish Reformation, Roman Catholic worship in the chapel was brought to an end.
The Sinclair family continued to be Roman Catholics until the early 18th century. From that time, the chapel was closed to public worship until 1861, it was re-opened as a place of worship according to the rites of the Scottish Episcopal Church, a member church of the Anglican Communion. It was reported in The Argus of Melbourne, Australia that Rosslyn Chapel was the site of an alleged bombing attempt by a suffragette. Since the late 1980s, the chapel has been the subject of speculative theories concerning a connection with the Knights Templar and the Holy Grail, Freemasonry, it was prominently featured in this role in Dan Brown's bestselling novel The Da Vinci Code and its 2006 film adaptation. Medieval historians say. Rosslyn Chapel remains owned; the current owner is 7th Earl of Rosslyn. The original plans for Rosslyn have never been found or recorded, so it is open to speculation whether or not the chapel was intended to be built in its current layout, its architecture is considered to be among the finest in Scotland.
Construction of the chapel began on 20 September 1456, although it has been recorded as 1446. The confusion over the building date comes from the chapel's receiving its founding charter to build a collegiate chapel in 1446 from Rome. Sinclair did not start to build the chapel. Although the original building was to be cruciform, it was never completed. Only the choir was constructed, with the retro-chapel, otherwise called the Lady chapel, built on the much earlier crypt believed to form part of an earlier castle; the foundations of the unbuilt nave and transepts stretching to a distance of 90 feet were recorded in the 19th century. The decorative carving was executed over a forty-year period. After the founder's death, construction of the planned nave and transepts was abandoned - either from lack of funds, lack of interest or a change in liturgical fashion; the Lower Chapel should not be confused with the burial vaults. The chapel stands on fourteen pillars, which form an arcade of twelve pointed arches on three sides of the nave.
At the east end, a fourteenth pillar between the penultimate pair form a three-pillared division between the nave and the Lady chapel. The three pillars at the east end of the chapel are named, from north to south: the Master Pillar, the Journeyman Pillar and, most famously, the Apprentice Pillar; these names for the pillars date from the late Georgian period — prior to this period they were called the Earl's Pillar, the Shekinah and the Prince's Pillar. One of the more notable architectural features of the Chapel is the "Apprentice Pillar, or "Prentice Pillar". Called the "Prince's Pillar" the name morphed over time due to a legend dating from the 18th century, involving the master mason in charge of the stonework in the chapel and his young apprentice mason. According to the legend, the master mason did not believe that the apprentice could perform the complicated task of carving the column without seeing the original which formed the inspiration for the design; the master mason travelled to see the original himself, but upon his return was enraged to find that the upstart apprentice had completed the column by himself.
In a fit of jealous anger, the master mason took his mallet and struck the apprentice on the head, killing him. The legend concludes that as punishment for his crime, the master mason's face was carved into the opposite corner to forever gaze upon his apprentice's pillar. There is however, no evidence. On the architrave joining the pillar there is an inscription, Forte est vinum fortior est rex fortiores sunt mulieres super omnia vincit veritas: "Wine is strong, a king is stronger, women are stronger still, but truth conquers all"; the author Henning Klovekorn has proposed that the pillar is representative of one of the roots of the Nordic Yggdrasil tree, prominent in Germanic and Norse mythology. He compares the dragons at the base of the pillar to the dragons found eating away at the base of the Yggdrasil root and, pointing out that at the top of the pillar is carved tree foliage, argues that the Nordic/Viking association is plausible considering the many auxiliary references in the chapel to Celtic and Norse mythology.
The general form of the pillar has been related to a type described by the French architect Eugène Viollet-le-Duc as a "bunch of sausages."A full-s
The Holy Grail is a treasure that serves as an important motif in Arthurian literature. Different traditions describe it as a cup, dish or stone with miraculous powers that provide happiness, eternal youth or sustenance in infinite abundance in the custody of the Fisher King; the term "holy grail" is used to denote an elusive object or goal, sought after for its great significance. A "grail", wondrous but not explicitly holy, first appears in Perceval, le Conte du Graal, an unfinished romance written by Chrétien de Troyes around 1190. Here, Chrétien's story attracted many continuators and interpreters in the 12th and early 13th centuries, including Wolfram von Eschenbach, who perceived the Grail as a stone. In the late 12th century, Robert de Boron wrote in Joseph d'Arimathie that the Grail was Jesus's vessel from the Last Supper, which Joseph of Arimathea used to catch Christ's blood at the crucifixion. Thereafter, the Holy Grail became interwoven with the legend of the Holy Chalice, the Last Supper cup, a theme continued in works such as the Vulgate Cycle, the Post-Vulgate Cycle, Le Morte d'Arthur.
Grail literature divides into two classes. The first concerns King Arthur's knights questing after the object; the second concerns the Grail's history in the time of Joseph of Arimathea. The word graal, as it is earliest spelled, comes from Old French graal or greal, cognate with Old Provençal grazal and Old Catalan gresal, meaning "a cup or bowl of earth, wood, or metal"; the most accepted etymology derives it from Latin gradalis or gradale via an earlier form, cratalis, a derivative of crater or cratus, which was, in turn, borrowed from Greek krater. Alternative suggestions include a derivative of cratis, a name for a type of woven basket that came to refer to a dish, or a derivative of Latin gradus meaning "'by degree','by stages', applied to a dish brought to the table in different stages or services during a meal". In the 15th century, English writer John Hardyng invented a fanciful new etymology for Old French san-graal, meaning "Holy Grail", by parsing it as sang real, meaning "royal blood".
This etymology was used by some medieval British writers such as Thomas Malory, became prominent in the conspiracy theory developed in the book The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, in which sang real refers to the Jesus bloodline. The nine works from the first group are: the Story of the Grail by Chrétien de Troyes. Four Continuations of Chrétien's poem, by authors of differing vision and talent, designed to bring the story to a close. Parzival by Wolfram von Eschenbach, which adapted at least the holiness of Robert's Grail into the framework of Chrétien's story. In Wolfram's telling, the Grail was kept safe at the castle of Munsalvaesche, entrusted to Titurel, the first Grail King. Some, not least the Benedictine monks, have identified the castle with their real sanctuary of Montserrat in Catalonia; the Didot Perceval, named after the manuscript's former owner, purportedly a prosification of Robert de Boron's sequel to Joseph d'Arimathie. Welsh romance Peredur son of Efrawg, a loose translation of Chrétien's poem and the Continuations, with some influence from native Welsh literature.
Perlesvaus, called the "least canonical" Grail romance because of its different character. German poem Diu Crône, in which Gawain, rather than Perceval, achieves the Grail; the Lancelot section of the vast Vulgate Cycle, which introduces the new Grail hero, Galahad. The Queste del Saint Graal, another part of the Vulgate Cycle, concerning the adventures of Galahad and his achievement of the Grail. Of the second group there are: Robert de Boron's Joseph d'Arimathie; the Estoire del Saint Graal, the first part of the Vulgate Cycle, based on Robert's tale but expanding it with many new details. Verses by Rigaut de Barbezieux, a late 12th or early 13th-century Provençal troubador, where mention is made of Perceval, the lance, the Grail; the Grail was considered a dish when first described by Chrétien de Troyes. There, it is a tray, used to serve at a feast. Hélinand of Froidmont described a grail as a "wide and deep saucer". Robert de Boron portrayed it as the vessel of the Last Supper. Peredur son of Efrawg had no Grail as such, presenting the hero instead with a platter containing his kinsman's bloody, severed head.
The Grail is first featured in Perceval, le Conte du Graal by Chrétien de Troyes, who claims he was working from a source book given to him by his patron, Count Philip of Flanders. In this incomplete poem, dated sometime between 1180 and 1191, the object has not yet acquired the implications of holiness it would have in works. While dining in the magical abode of the Fisher King, Perceval witnesses a wondrous procession in which youths carry magnificent objects from one chamber to another, passing before him at each course of the meal. First comes a young man carrying a bleeding lance two boys carrying candelabras. A beautiful young girl emerges bearing an elaborately decorated graal, or "grail". Chrétien refers to this object not as "The Grail" but as "a grail", showing the word was used, in its earliest literary context, as a common noun. For Chrétien a