Mermen are mythical male equivalents and counterparts of mermaids – legendary creatures who have the form of a male human from the waist up and are fish-like from the waist down, having scaly fish tails in place of legs. A "merboy" is a young merman. In contrast to mermaids, mermen were traditionally depicted as unattractive. However, some modern depictions show them as handsome. In Greek mythology, mermen were illustrated to have green seaweed-like hair, a beard, a trident. In Irish mythology, mermen are described as ugly creatures with green hair and skin, narrow eyes and a red nose. In Medieval Europe, mermen were sometimes held responsible for causing violent storms and sinking ships. In Cornish folklore into early modern times, the Bucca, described as a lonely, mournful character with the skin of a conger eel and hair of seaweed, was still placated with votive offerings of fish left on the beach by fishermen. Vengeful water spirits occur in Breton and Gaelic lore which may relate to pre Christian gods such as Nechtan.
In Finnish mythology, a vetehinen, a type of Neck, is sometimes portrayed as a magical, bearded man with the tail of a fish. He can cure illnesses, lift curses and brew potions, but he can cause unintended harm by becoming too curious about human life; the boto of the Amazon River regions is described according to local lore as taking the form of a human or merman known as encantado and with the habit of seducing human women and impregnating them. Chinese mermen were believed to only surface during storms or, in some cases, were believed to have the ability to cause storms; the actions and behavior of mermen can vary wildly depending on the source and time period of the stories. They have been said to sink ships by summoning great storms, but said to be wise teachers, according to earlier mythology. Mermen, just like mermaids, can lure and attract humans with their enchantingly beautiful, soft melodic and seductive siren-like singing voices and tones; the most well-known merman was Triton, son of Poseidon and Amphitrite.
Although Amphitrite gave birth to a merman, neither Poseidon nor Amphitrite were merfolk, although both were able to live under water as as on land. Triton was known as the Trumpeter of the Sea for his usage of a conch shell. Other noteworthy mermen were the Babylonian Oannes and Ea, the Sumerian Enki. Another notable merman from Greek mythology was Glaucus, he lived his early life as a fisherman. One day, while fishing, he saw that the fish he caught would jump into the sea, he ate some of the grass, believing it to have magical properties, felt an overwhelming desire to be in the sea. He refused to go back on land; the sea gods nearby transformed him into a sea god. Ovid describes the transformation of Glaucus in the Metamorphoses, describing him as a blue-green man with a fishy member where his legs had been. Norse mythology, in particular Icelandic folklore, has mermen known as Marbendlar. In Dogon mythology, ancestral spirits called Nommo had humanoid upper torsos and feet, a fish-like lower torso and tail.
The East Slavic epic Sadko contains a Sea Tsar, a merman. The Fiji mermaid was first put on display in 1842 by P. T. Barnum in the Barnum's New York. A similar "merman" was found in Banff, is displayed at the Indian Trading Post. Other such "mermen", which may be composites of wood carvings, parts of monkeys and fish, are found in museums around the world, for example, at the Booth Museum in Brighton. Matthew Arnold wrote a poem called "The Forsaken Merman" about a merman whose human wife abandoned him and their children. Mermen may feature in science fiction and fantasy literature, for example, science fiction writer Joe Haldeman wrote two books on Attar the Merman in which genetically enhanced mermen can communicate telepathically with dolphins. Samuel R. Delany wrote the short story Driftglass in which mermen are deliberately created surgically as amphibious human beings with gills, while in J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter, a race of merpeople live in a lake outside Hogwarts. Mermen sometimes appear in modern comics, television shows and films.
Although they were once depicted as being unattractive in some traditions as described in previous sections, in some modern works, mermen are portrayed as handsome and brave. In the 1977–1978 television series Man from Atlantis, the merman as played by Patrick Duffy is described as a survivor from Atlantis. In the DC Comics mythology, mermen are a common fixture of the Aquaman mythos showing a parochialistic rivalry with humanoid water-breathers; the mermen or merfolk appear in the Dungeons & Dragons game. The monster Gill-man from Creature from the Black Lagoon could be seen as a modern adaptation of the Merman myth. List of piscine and amphibian humanoids List of hybrid creatures in mythology Vodyanoy Fish-man of Cantabria, Spain
Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, in proportions which can be varied to achieve varying mechanical and electrical properties. It is a substitutional alloy: atoms of the two constituents may replace each other within the same crystal structure. Bronze is an alloy containing copper, but instead of zinc it has tin. Both bronze and brass may include small proportions of a range of other elements including arsenic, phosphorus, aluminium and silicon; the distinction is historical. Modern practice in museums and archaeology avoids both terms for historical objects in favour of the all-embracing "copper alloy". Brass is used for decoration for its bright gold-like appearance, it is used in zippers. Brass is used in situations in which it is important that sparks not be struck, such as in fittings and tools used near flammable or explosive materials. Brass has higher malleability than zinc; the low melting point of brass and its flow characteristics make it a easy material to cast. By varying the proportions of copper and zinc, the properties of the brass can be changed, allowing hard and soft brasses.
The density of brass is 8.4 to 8.73 grams per cubic centimetre. Today 90% of all brass alloys are recycled; because brass is not ferromagnetic, it can be separated from ferrous scrap by passing the scrap near a powerful magnet. Brass scrap is transported to the foundry where it is melted and recast into billets. Billets are extruded into the desired form and size; the general softness of brass means that it can be machined without the use of cutting fluid, though there are exceptions to this. Aluminium makes brass more corrosion-resistant. Aluminium causes a beneficial hard layer of aluminium oxide to be formed on the surface, thin and self-healing. Tin has a similar effect and finds its use in seawater applications. Combinations of iron, aluminium and manganese make brass wear and tear resistant. To enhance the machinability of brass, lead is added in concentrations of around 2%. Since lead has a lower melting point than the other constituents of the brass, it tends to migrate towards the grain boundaries in the form of globules as it cools from casting.
The pattern the globules form on the surface of the brass increases the available lead surface area which in turn affects the degree of leaching. In addition, cutting operations can smear the lead globules over the surface; these effects can lead to significant lead leaching from brasses of comparatively low lead content. In October 1999 the California State Attorney General sued 13 key manufacturers and distributors over lead content. In laboratory tests, state researchers found the average brass key, new or old, exceeded the California Proposition 65 limits by an average factor of 19, assuming handling twice a day. In April 2001 manufacturers agreed to reduce lead content to 1.5%, or face a requirement to warn consumers about lead content. Keys plated with other metals are not affected by the settlement, may continue to use brass alloys with higher percentage of lead content. In California, lead-free materials must be used for "each component that comes into contact with the wetted surface of pipes and pipe fittings, plumbing fittings and fixtures."
On January 1, 2010, the maximum amount of lead in "lead-free brass" in California was reduced from 4% to 0.25% lead. The so-called dezincification resistant brasses, sometimes referred to as CR brasses, are used where there is a large corrosion risk and where normal brasses do not meet the standards. Applications with high water temperatures, chlorides present, or deviating water qualities play a role. DZR-brass is excellent in water boiler systems; this brass alloy must be produced with great care, with special attention placed on a balanced composition and proper production temperatures and parameters to avoid long-term failures. The high malleability and workability good resistance to corrosion, traditionally attributed acoustic properties of brass, have made it the usual metal of choice for construction of musical instruments whose acoustic resonators consist of long narrow tubing folded or coiled for compactness. Collectively known as brass instruments, these include the trombone, trumpet, baritone horn, tenor horn, French horn, many other "horns", many in variously-sized families, such as the saxhorns.
Other wind instruments may be constructed of brass or other metals, indeed most modern student-model flutes and piccolos are made of some variety of brass a cupronickel alloy similar to nickel silver/German silver. Clarinets low clarinets such as the contrabass and subcontrabass, are sometimes made of metal because of limited supplies of the dense, fine-grained tropical hardwoods traditionally preferred for smaller woodwinds. For the same reason, some low clarinets and contrabassoons feature a hybrid construction, with long, straight sections of wood, curved joints, and/or bell of metal; the use of metal avoids the risks of exposing wooden instruments to changes in temperature or humid
Labour Party (UK)
The Labour Party is a centre-left political party in the United Kingdom, described as an alliance of social democrats, democratic socialists and trade unionists. The party's platform emphasises greater state intervention, social justice and strengthening workers' rights; the Labour Party was founded in 1900, having grown out of the trade union movement and socialist parties of the nineteenth century. It overtook the Liberal Party to become the main opposition to the Conservative Party in the early 1920s, forming two minority governments under Ramsay MacDonald in the 1920s and early 1930s. Labour served in the wartime coalition of 1940-1945, after which Clement Attlee's Labour government established the National Health Service and expanded the welfare state from 1945 to 1951. Under Harold Wilson and James Callaghan, Labour again governed from 1964 to 1970 and 1974 to 1979. In the 1990s Tony Blair took Labour closer to the centre as part of his "New Labour" project, which governed the UK under Blair and Gordon Brown from 1997 to 2010.
After Corbyn took over in 2015, the party has moved leftward. Labour is the Official Opposition in the Parliament of the United Kingdom, having won the second-largest number of seats in the 2017 general election; the Labour Party is the largest party in the Welsh Assembly, forming the main party in the current Welsh government. The party is the third largest in the Scottish Parliament. Labour is a member of the Party of European Socialists and Progressive Alliance, holds observer status in the Socialist International, sits with the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament; the party includes semi-autonomous Scottish and Welsh branches and supports the Social Democratic and Labour Party in Northern Ireland. As of 2017, Labour had the largest membership of any party in Western Europe; the Labour Party originated in the late 19th century, meeting the demand for a new political party to represent the interests and needs of the urban working class, a demographic which had increased in number, many of whom only gained suffrage with the passage of the Representation of the People Act 1884.
Some members of the trades union movement became interested in moving into the political field, after further extensions of the voting franchise in 1867 and 1885, the Liberal Party endorsed some trade-union sponsored candidates. The first Lib–Lab candidate to stand was George Odger in the Southwark by-election of 1870. In addition, several small socialist groups had formed around this time, with the intention of linking the movement to political policies. Among these were the Independent Labour Party, the intellectual and middle-class Fabian Society, the Marxist Social Democratic Federation and the Scottish Labour Party. At the 1895 general election, the Independent Labour Party put up 28 candidates but won only 44,325 votes. Keir Hardie, the leader of the party, believed that to obtain success in parliamentary elections, it would be necessary to join with other left-wing groups. Hardie's roots as a lay preacher contributed to an ethos in the party which led to the comment by 1950s General Secretary Morgan Phillips that "Socialism in Britain owed more to Methodism than Marx".
In 1899, a Doncaster member of the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants, Thomas R. Steels, proposed in his union branch that the Trade Union Congress call a special conference to bring together all left-wing organisations and form them into a single body that would sponsor Parliamentary candidates; the motion was passed at all stages by the TUC, the proposed conference was held at the Memorial Hall on Farringdon Street on 26 and 27 February 1900. The meeting was attended by a broad spectrum of working-class and left-wing organisations—trades unions represented about one third of the membership of the TUC delegates. After a debate, the 129 delegates passed Hardie's motion to establish "a distinct Labour group in Parliament, who shall have their own whips, agree upon their policy, which must embrace a readiness to cooperate with any party which for the time being may be engaged in promoting legislation in the direct interests of labour." This created an association called the Labour Representation Committee, meant to co-ordinate attempts to support MPs sponsored by trade unions and represent the working-class population.
It had no single leader, in the absence of one, the Independent Labour Party nominee Ramsay MacDonald was elected as Secretary. He had the difficult task of keeping the various strands of opinions in the LRC united; the October 1900 "Khaki election" came too soon for the new party to campaign effectively. Only 15 candidatures were sponsored. Support for the LRC was boosted by the 1901 Taff Vale Case, a dispute between strikers and a railway company that ended with the union being ordered to pay £23,000 damages for a strike; the judgement made strikes illegal since employers could recoup the cost of lost business from the unions. The apparent acquiescence of the Conservative Government of Arthur Balfour to industrial and business interests intensified support for the LRC against a government that appeared to have little concern for the industrial proletariat and its problems. In the 1906 election, the LRC won 29 seats—helped by a secret 1903 pact between Ramsay MacDonald and Liberal Chief Whip Herbert Gladstone that aimed to avoid splitting the opposition vote between Labour and Liberal candidates in the interest of removing the Conservatives from office.
In their first meeting after the election the group's Members of Parliament decided to adop
An eagle lectern is a lectern in the shape of an eagle on whose outstretched wings the Bible rests. They are most common in Anglican cathedrals; the symbolism of the eagle derived from the belief that the bird was capable of staring into the sun and that Christians were able to gaze unflinchingly at the revelation of the divine word. Alternatively, the eagle was believed to be the bird that flew highest in the sky and was therefore closest to heaven, symbolised the carrying of the word of God to the four corners of the world; the eagle is the symbol used to depict John the Apostle, whose writing is said to most witness the light and divinity of Christ. In art, John, as the presumed author of the Gospel, is depicted with an eagle, which symbolizes the height to which he rose in the first chapter of his gospel; the eagle came to represent the inspiration of the gospels. The tradition of using eagle-shaped lecterns predates the Reformation. Medieval examples survive in a number of English churches, including the church of St Margaret in Kings Lynn and the parish church in Ottery St Mary.
The Dunkeld Lectern is another notable Medieval eagle lectern
In folklore, a mermaid is an aquatic creature with the head and upper body of a female human and the tail of a fish. Mermaids appear in the folklore of many cultures worldwide, including the Near East, Europe and Africa; the first stories appeared in ancient Assyria, in which the goddess Atargatis transformed herself into a mermaid out of shame for accidentally killing her human lover. Mermaids are sometimes associated with perilous events such as floods, storms and drownings. In other folk traditions, they can be benevolent or beneficent, bestowing boons or falling in love with humans; the male equivalent of the mermaid is the merman a familiar figure in folklore and heraldry. Although traditions about and sightings of mermen are less common than those of mermaids, they are assumed to co-exist with their female counterparts; some of the attributes of mermaids may have been influenced by the Sirens of Greek mythology. Historical accounts of mermaids, such as those reported by Christopher Columbus during his exploration of the Caribbean, may have been inspired by manatees and similar aquatic mammals.
While there is no evidence that mermaids exist outside folklore, reports of mermaid sightings continue to the present day, including 21st-century examples from Israel and Zimbabwe. Mermaids have been a popular subject of art and literature in recent centuries, such as in Hans Christian Andersen's well-known fairy tale "The Little Mermaid", they have subsequently been depicted in operas, books and comics. The word mermaid is a compound of the Old English mere, maid; the equivalent term in Old English was merewif. They are conventionally depicted as beautiful with long flowing hair; as cited above, they are sometimes equated with the sirens of Greek mythology, half-bird femmes fatales whose enchanting voices would lure soon-to-be-shipwrecked sailors to nearby rocks, sandbars or shoals. Sirenia is an order of aquatic, herbivorous mammals that inhabit rivers, coastal marine waters and marine wetlands. Sirenians, including manatees and dugongs, possess major aquatic adaptations: arms used for steering, a paddle used for propulsion, remnants of hind limbs in the form of two small bones floating deep in the muscle.
They look ponderous and clumsy but are fusiform and muscular, mariners before the mid-nineteenth century referred to them as mermaids. Sirenomelia called "mermaid syndrome", is a rare congenital disorder in which a child is born with his or her legs fused together and small genitalia; this condition is about as rare as conjoined twins, affecting one out of every 100,000 live births and is fatal within a day or two of birth because of kidney and bladder complications. Four survivors were known as of July 2003; as the anthropologist A. Asbjørn Jøn noted: "these'marine beasts' have featured in folk tradition for many centuries now, until recently they have maintained a reasonably standard set of characteristics. Many folklorists and mythographers deem that the origin of the mythic mermaid is the dugong, posing a theory that mythicised tales have been constructed around early sightings of dugongs by sailors." Depictions of entities with the tails of fish, but upper bodies of human beings appear in Mesopotamian artwork from the Old Babylonian Period onwards.
These figures are mermen, but mermaids do appear. The name for the mermaid figure may have been kuliltu, meaning "fish-woman"; such figures were used in Neo-Assyrian art as protective figures and were shown in both monumental sculpture and in small, protective figurines. The first known mermaid stories appeared in Assyria c. 1000 BC. The goddess Atargatis, mother of Assyrian queen Semiramis, loved a mortal and unintentionally killed him. Ashamed, she jumped into a lake and took the form of a fish, but the waters would not conceal her divine beauty. Thereafter, she took the form of a mermaid — human above the waist, fish below — although the earliest representations of Atargatis showed her as a fish with a human head and arm, similar to the Babylonian god Ea; the Greeks recognized Atargatis under the name Derketo. Sometime before 546 BC, Milesian philosopher Anaximander postulated that mankind had sprung from an aquatic animal species, he thought. A popular Greek legend turned Alexander the Great's sister, into a mermaid after her death, living in the Aegean.
She would ask the sailors on any ship she would encounter only one question: "Is King Alexander alive?", to which the correct answer was: "He lives and reigns and conquers the world". This answer would please her, she would accordingly calm the waters and bid the ship farewell. Any other answer would enrage her, she would stir up a terrible storm, dooming the ship and every sailor on board. In the second century AD, the Hellenized Syrian writer Lucian of Samosata wrote about the Syrian temples he had visited in his treatise On the Syrian Goddess, written in Ionic Greek: "Among them – Now, the traditional story among them concerning the temple, but other men swear that Semiramis of Babylonia, whose deeds are many in Asia founded this site, not for Hera but for her own mother, whose name was Derketo." "I saw Derketo's likeness in a strange marvel. It is woman for half its length, but the image in the Holy City is a woman, the grounds for their acco
Somerset is a county in South West England which borders Gloucestershire and Bristol to the north, Wiltshire to the east, Dorset to the south-east and Devon to the south-west. It is bounded to the north and west by the Severn Estuary and the Bristol Channel, its coastline facing southeastern Wales, its traditional border with Gloucestershire is the River Avon. Somerset's county town is Taunton. Somerset is a rural county of rolling hills, the Blackdown Hills, Mendip Hills, Quantock Hills and Exmoor National Park, large flat expanses of land including the Somerset Levels. There is evidence of human occupation from Paleolithic times, of subsequent settlement by the Celts and Anglo-Saxons; the county played a significant part in Alfred the Great's rise to power, the English Civil War and the Monmouth Rebellion. The city of Bath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Somerset's name derives from Old English Sumorsǣte, short for Sumortūnsǣte, meaning "the people living at or dependent on Sumortūn"; the first known use of Somersæte is in the law code of King Ine, the Saxon King of Wessex from 688 to 726, making Somerset along with Hampshire and Dorset one of the oldest extant units of local government in the world.
An alternative suggestion is the name derives from Seo-mere-saetan meaning "settlers by the sea lakes". The Old English name is used in the motto of the county, Sumorsǣte ealle, meaning "all the people of Somerset". Adopted as the motto in 1911, the phrase is taken from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. Somerset was a part of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Wessex, the phrase refers to the wholehearted support the people of Somerset gave to King Alfred in his struggle to save Wessex from Viking invaders. Somerset settlement names are Anglo-Saxon in origin, but numerous place names include Brittonic Celtic elements, such as the rivers Frome and Avon, names of hills. For example, an Anglo-Saxon charter of 682 refers to Creechborough Hill as "the hill the British call Cructan and the Anglo-Saxons call Crychbeorh"; some modern names are Brythonic in origin, such as Tarnock, while others have both Saxon and Brythonic elements, such as Pen Hill. The caves of the Mendip Hills were settled during the Palaeolithic period, contain extensive archaeological sites such as those at Cheddar Gorge.
Bones from Gough's Cave have been dated to 12,000 BC, a complete skeleton, known as Cheddar Man, dates from 7150 BC. Examples of cave art have been found in Aveline's Hole; some caves continued to be occupied until modern times, including Wookey Hole. The Somerset Levels—specifically dry points at Glastonbury and Brent Knoll— have a long history of settlement, are known to have been settled by Mesolithic hunters. Travel in the area was facilitated by the construction of one of the world's oldest known engineered roadways, the Sweet Track, which dates from 3807 BC or 3806 BC; the exact age of the henge monument at Stanton Drew stone circles is unknown, but it is believed to be Neolithic. There are numerous Iron Age hill forts, some of which, like Cadbury Castle and Ham Hill, were reoccupied in the Early Middle Ages. On the authority of the future emperor Vespasian, as part of the ongoing expansion of the Roman presence in Britain, the Second Legion Augusta invaded Somerset from the south-east in AD 47.
The county remained part of the Roman Empire until around AD 409, when the Roman occupation of Britain came to an end. A variety of Roman remains have been found, including Pagans Hill Roman temple in Chew Stoke,Low Ham Roman Villa and the Roman Baths that gave their name to the city of Bath. After the Romans left, Britain was invaded by Anglo-Saxon peoples. By AD 600 they had established control over much of what is now England, but Somerset was still in native British hands; the British held back Saxon advance into the south-west for some time longer, but by the early eighth century King Ine of Wessex had pushed the boundaries of the West Saxon kingdom far enough west to include Somerset. The Saxon royal palace in Cheddar was used several times in the 10th century to host the Witenagemot. After the Norman Conquest, the county was divided into 700 fiefs, large areas were owned by the crown, with fortifications such as Dunster Castle used for control and defence. Somerset contains HM Prison Shepton Mallet, England's oldest prison still in use prior to its closure in 2013, having opened in 1610.
In the English Civil War Somerset was Parliamentarian, with key engagements being the Sieges of Taunton and the Battle of Langport. In 1685 the Monmouth Rebellion was played out in neighbouring Dorset; the rebels landed at Lyme Regis and travelled north, hoping to capture Bristol and Bath, but they were defeated in the Battle of Sedgemoor at Westonzoyland, the last pitched battle fought in England. Arthur Wellesley took Duke of Wellington from the town of Wellington; the Industrial Revolution in the Midlands and Northern England spelled the end for most of Somerset's cottage industries. Farming continued to flourish and the Bath and West of England Society for the Encouragement of Agriculture, Arts and Commerce was founded in 1777 to improve farming methods. Despite this, 20 years John Billingsley conducted a survey of the county's agriculture in 1795 and found that agricultural methods could still be improved. Coal mining was an important industry in north Somerset during the 18th and 19th centuries, by 1800 it was prominent in Radstock.
The Somerset Coalfield reached its peak production by the 1920s, but all the pits have now been closed, the last in 1973. Most of the surface