The relics of Notre Dame

As you will have heard, the fire at Notre Dame cathedral did not destroy two of its most famous relics: a, I mean the, Crown of Thorns sported by JC at his last public appearance, and the tunic of St Louis, supposedly worn by the king turned saint when he brought the crown back to France. It was given as a bribe to Louis IX in exchange for his support of king Baldwin, who had pawned the crown as security against a loan for 13,000 gold pieces from the Venetians.

The crown itself has no thorns, as these were distributed to other sites as important relics. But happily by the power of sympathetic magic, I mean Divine Grace, many more thorns were transformed into  relics (third class) by being touched to thcrown.

It’s kind of cool that human chains of the faithful rescued and other valuables from the fire this week. But technically they needn’t have bothered: any medieval theologian could have told them that real relics can’t be burned. But if you read Burgs & Bailiffs Trinity  you knew that.

Published in: on April 16, 2019 at 12:46 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Clerics

Last weekend I painted four clerics in between chores and doing a ton of preparation on other figures. One thing I’m trying out is putting grout in the bottoms of the plastic bases of some hard plastic miniatures to make them more stable. I’ve used modelling clay  for this before but it eventually exudes oils and I wanted a more permanent fix, as many were skeletons. I hope to start working on my remaining undead figures next, but after all the demons some clerics are needed for balance!

The first is a monk from the Ral Partha “1200 AD” line. (These are back in production, in fact!) It’s a nice sculpt and was pretty easy to paint.

partha-monk

Useless trivia: The 1200 AD line was originally called the 1100 AD line in early Ral Partha catalogs. By the time this guy was produced in 1983 or so, it was called 1200 AD. Sadly, he’s one of the figures that got pretty badly messed up by my cheap matte varnish. I’m glad I got a photo before sealing him.

Next up another Ral Partha figure. This one is cleric from a boxed set sold some time around 1981. The box had other adventurers, all very nicely done, and pre-size creep, so they are true 25mm like the monk above.

Ral Partha cleric

He suffered a bit but not as much from sealing. His face detail was always shallow and the sealer obscures it further; again I snapped this photo before the sealing. I’m not completely satisfied with the hood color but I wanted him to be a little more colorful and thought it might contrast well with his darker skin tone. Unfortunately his sidelong glance is not very clear any more under the sealer. He’s based on a 20mm mosaic tile rather than a 1″ piece of matte board like the others. A similar variant is still being made by the revived Ral Partha, with a snake for a staff (!).

Next a Heritage “Dungeon Dwellers” cleric.

heritage-cleric

This one came in the Caverns of Doom boxed set, and I had to replace both his hands. The replacements are a little big (most figures have wacky proportion anyway) and this is especially noticeable with his tiny feet, but I think he looks ok. The original had an ankh in his right hand and an open left hand, but I gave him a cross and a vial of holy water! He’s got glossy sealer only in this photo too.

Lastly, a Citadel dwarf.

dwarf-cleric

He’s not really necessarily a cleric (he’s from the DC line of warriors) but he’s armed with a big hammer in his hand and a smaller hammer tucked into his belt on his back. He’s got some glossy sealer but no matte in this photo. He was one of the of lucky ones who did not get all frosty looking from the matte varnish.

Published in: on January 11, 2017 at 12:18 pm  Comments (1)  
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Providing a citiation from Ecclesiatical law for the proprietor of Playing D&D with Porn Stars, that’s like work when you’re a librarian, but I’m a sucker…

No cleric may decree or pronounce a sentence involving the shedding of blood, or carry out a punishment involving the same, or be present when such punishment is carried out. If anyone, however, under cover of this statute, dares to inflict injury on churches or ecclesiastical persons, let him be restrained by ecclesiastical censure. A cleric may not write or dictate letters which require punishments involving the shedding of blood, in the courts of princes this responsibility should be entrusted to laymen and not to clerics. Moreover no cleric may be put in command of mercenaries or crossbowmen or suchlike men of blood; nor may a subdeacon, deacon or priest practise the art of surgery, which involves cauterizing and making incisions; nor may anyone confer a rite of blessing or consecration on a purgation by ordeal of boiling or cold water or of the red-hot iron, saving nevertheless the previously promulgated prohibitions regarding single combats and duels. — from the Fourth Lateran Council of 1215

Zak of “Playing D&D with Porn Stars,” thought that he might have seen something on my blog about why D&D clerics are prohibited from using edged weapons, and asked if I could recall it.  I don’t know if I’ve ever discussed this explicitly but he was pretty sure I had a really explicit quote about it.  That’s absolutely the sort thing I ought to have here!  OK, now I do.  Despite the many apocryphal explanations for this D&D trope (Archbishop Turpin in Charlemangian legends, Bishop Odo using a club on the Bayeux Tapestry, etc.) this must be the most specific reason the rule was introduced (apart from the possible game design purpose of denying clerics the use of magic swords!).

Probably this quote is also why the Inquisition always turned people over to the secular authorities for torture and execution.

I’m a librarian but I don’t work the reference desk, so this took me a while to figure out, and I kept sending him secondary sources instead of this primary source.    I wish I could say Google had no role in my finding this answer but I can’t. 😦

Published in: on May 11, 2013 at 7:51 pm  Comments (6)  
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A couple more minis

Left: A Grenadier AD&D Fighting Man.  He originally held a guisarme (or a bill hook, or a bill-guisarme , or glaive-guisarme-guisarme-fauchard-guisarme…) but the blade broke off long ago and I’ve replaced it with a spare halberd head from a Zvedza kit. (Oddly, the Zvedza minis are pretty close to 25mm but their polearms were large even by modern, post-GW scale creep standards).  On the right: A RAFM cleric.  Nice morningstar.

The fighting man came in a boxed set that my brother & I got back in 1981 or so; the RAFM guy was just given to me by Scottsz a couple of months ago when he found a shop with a bunch of old lead.

The pics are blurry because I did not use a tripod.  They make a huge difference when you’re photographing small things like minis.

Published in: on August 16, 2011 at 6:00 am  Comments (2)  
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