Thursday, 14 June 2012

1933 - Letter N

BFTF has been fascinated by the contents of a multi-volume 1933 Odhams Press publication entitled "The British Encyclopedia". The volumes provide a glimpse into the the way the world looked at that time and BFTF thought you, gentle reader, might be interested to read a few extracts from some of the somtimes surprising, sometimes shocking, sometimes sad entries. See here for extreacts from other sections of the encyclopaedia

Please note that these are only tiny extracts and are not meant to be a summary of the entire encyclopedia entry.

A town of Palestine, capital of Samaria, 30 miles No f Jerusalem. It is beautifully situated among gardens, orchards and fertile fields...

...The town, which was fortified by the Turks during the European War, was taken by Lord Allenby in Sept, 1918. Pop (1933) 17,171

National Dept
...The Bank of England was, indeed, founded upon a perpetual loan of £1,200,000 to the State [in. This loan was the first national dept...

National Debt
1694 : £1.2 million (initial national dept on formation of Bank of England)
1697 : £21.5 million
1713 : £52.0 million
1748 : £79.3 million
1763 : £138.3 million
1783 : £250.0 million
1814 : £742.5 million
1914 : £711 million
1919 : £8079 million

National Health and Unemployment Insurance
...The idea of State responsibility fo rrthe distress arising to the individual out of illness...grew very gradually in the British public mind...

In 1911, however, was passed an Act of Parliament which imposed...a State system of insurance...[This entry covered a rather impressive 4 pages]

...Another innnovation of this period [~1880] was a structural alteration whereby a ram took the place of the old-fashioned bow...and proved a frightful source of danger to consorts by aggravating the effects of accidental collision...

12 pages [regarding the invention of the underwater mine and torpedo] the great wars which followed vastly more loss was occasioned by underwater weapons than by the gun...

[worth noting that this entry was a very impressive 12 pages long!]

...Some astronomers think that the spiral nebulae may be external galsaxies of stars, or island universes comparable with our own, and at enormous distances from it, but others consider that they are subordinate parts of our universe, being star clusters too closely packed for telescopic resolution.

...A race of mankind probably indigenous to equatorial Africa. ..

...The typical negro is described as having a black skin, wooly or crisp hair...calves poorly developed and feet comparatively long...

...A sultanate of Central Arabia, inhabited by Wahabis. . . Ibn Saud, Sultan of Nejd, annexed Jebel Shammar and made captive the representative of the Ibn Rashid dynasty in 1921; andin 1924 he made war on the Hejaz and captured Mecca, the Sherifian capital. In Dec 1925 he entered Jidda and, on the abdication of ing Ali in the same month, became King of the Hejaz. A treaty embodying Britain's recognition of his complete independance was signed at Jidda in 1927...

[No entry, this particle was only discovered in 1932]...

...During the seventeenth century...the main barrier [to the printing of newspapers] was provided by the Licensing Laws, which forbade the setting up of manuscript in type without a license from the Archbishop of Canterbury or the Bishop of London, and not until 1695 was the Licensing Act finally abolished... the middle of the [18th] century the Stamp Act [a tax on newspapers] was made even more exacting... "taxes on knowledge" continued to be multiplied and by 1804 the Stamp Tax amounted to no less than 3 1/2 d per copy... [The Tax was abolished in 1855]

Northern Ireland
[Only ref to conflict there was: ] ...After the settlement of the Irish problems in 1922, boundary disputes between Northern Ireland and the Irish Free State continued. . .in 1925 Mr Baldwin intervened and a settlement was arrived at whereby no boundary alteration was made A commission to inNo entry, this particle was only discovered in 1932]...

...The chief mineral is coal. The soil is generally extemely fertile. . .The manufactures include lace, hosiery, machinery, silk and cotton spinning, bleaching, coal mining, iron adn brass founding, glove making etc...

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