Friday, May 29, 2009

Picture Day Friday

Prince Regent George the IV recruited Antonin Carême to preside over this lavishly scaled Great Kitchen and its vast batterie de cuisine at the Royal Pavilion in Brighton, England.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Pomegranate Chicken

Today for something a little different on this blog that I haven't done before. Khoresht-e fesenjān is chicken in a thick stew of pomegranate sauce and ground walnuts.

The ancient custom of combining meat with fruit occurs most notably in the cooking of Armenia, Georgia, Morocco, and Iran. This traditional Iranian khoresht originated in the province of Gilan, on the shores of the Caspian Sea, its swamps the nesting place of delicious wild ducks. It is often served at Ramadan with the buttered rice dish chelou.

The recipe below is modified from Persian recipe by using the Pomegranate Sauce Recipe by Anne Gracie and my additions.

1-2 Tbsp olive oil
1 large red or yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup POM 100% Pomegranate Juice
1 tsp salt
water, as needed
1 cup Greek yogurt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 1/4 tsp saffron
1 1/2 Tbsp molasses
2 cups walnuts, finely chopped or pulverized
1 yukon gold potato, finely chopped
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts OR skinless chicken thighs

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet. Fry onions & garlic until soft. Add all ingredients, except chicken, and simmer for 5 minutes. Add chicken. Turn heat to med-low. Cover and cook for 40-60 minutes, until chicken is falling to pieces.

For Persian recipes with a more authentic flavor, visit Iran Mania.

"Buy the pomegranate when it laughs—
its laughter reveals the secret of its seeds.
The garden answers the laughing pomegranate with bloom;
In companionship with the friends of God
you will bloom as they do."


Monday, May 25, 2009

In Praise of the Pickle

Last Monday, I posted about Napoleon's Pickle. Today, I'm talking about an entirely different kind: the dill pickle.

  • Aristotle praisd their healing effects in 350 B.C.

  • Julius Caesar fed them to his tropps, supposedly believing they lent physical and spiritual strength.

  • Cleopatra insisted that eating them enhanced her beauty.

  • Christopher Columbus brought them to the new world on the 15th century voyage.

  • Are you fan of dill pickles with your hamburgers? Or relish with your hot dog? Count me in, as a huge fan of sliced pickle.

    Friday, May 22, 2009

    Picture Day Friday

    Cerdic was a chieftain of the clan known as Gewisse. He founded the West Saxon kingdom of Wessex in southwestern England in the sixth century. The picture is from cartographer John Speed's Saxon Heptarchy printed in 1611.

    And for a stark's a Regency lady from 1819 wearing a half-mourning evening gown.

    Thursday, May 21, 2009

    Continuing Characters in a Series

    Here's a problem I've been wrestling with. When you have characters (protagonists) from previous books continuing in a series, how much air time, i.e., ink, do you give them in the current story?

    Let's consider the case of historicals, since I read mostly historicals and I write exclusively in that sub-genre. Marriage is the ultimate HEA, the satisfying end required of historicals. But when the current starring couple shows up in future books, their relationship is very happy, very sweet, very thoughtful towards each other...and rather unreal.

    If they have realistic problems then resolving them will take focus away from the main protagonists in the current novel whose Journey to HEA we want to read about. But at the same time, if the problems are not solved, then the reader will feel cheated. The trust in their HEA was established in the last book, and the author dare not break it asunder.

    So, is the solution to write standalone titles? But readers like to meet couples from previous stories again. They want more time with them, because they like them and want to know that even with the passage of time, their HEA is a sure thing.

    Tbat gets me to the story writer's dilemma... How to portray these people? What role should they play in future books without having the gall to be overly treacly?

    Illuminated Manuscript Prize!

    Illuminated Book Of Kells Folio 292r Circa 800 Gospel Of JohnWe have a WINNER!!

    Thank you to Vanessa Kelly for a fun visit and for leading a lively discussion on tortured heroes and heroines.

    Thank you also to everyone who visited. I love Vanessa's MASTERING THE MARQUESS so it's good to see others equally enthused about the book.

    Without further ado, Vanessa's Ms. Random Selector has chosen a prize winner. It is...


    Please send your snail mail details to keira (at) keirasoleore (dot) com, and I will make sure you get your fabulous prize!

    {Illuminated Book Of Kells, Folio 292r, Gospel Of John, Circa 800}

    Wednesday, May 20, 2009

    Author Vanessa Kelly

    Please join me in welcoming debut author Vanessa Kelly, the first guest to Cogitations and Meditations. Her MASTERING THE MARQUESS launched last month to great critical acclaim from reviewers and readers alike.

    Vanessa, hello and welcome. It's a pleasure to have you guesting here.


    What started you down the story path that led to MTM? Was it a single idea, something that struck you in your research, or a particular character?

    My story began with research I did some years ago in graduate school. My dissertation topic was on women and madness in late 18th and early 19th century British writers. I was absolutely fascinated with the topic and spent all kinds of time studying medical documents of the period, and reading about early treatments for mental illness. Women, of course, were sometimes put away in asylums by their male relations, either because they were genuinely ill, or because someone just wanted to get rid of them. I thought that would make an interesting dramatic basis for a story. Plus, I really wanted to have a scene in a madhouse!

    Names convey so much of a character's personality to the reader. Meredith's and Annabel's names fit them to a perfect T. How did you name them and the other people in your story?

    I came up with names by reading through various county and church records. My heroine, Meredith, is a mature, serious person—a bit unusual—and I wanted her name to reflect that. Annabel is young and sweet, so I wanted a name that would convey those aspects of her character.

    Did you hope your readers would identify with Meredith or with Silverton? As the author of the story, whom did you see yourself most in tune with?

    I really wanted readers to identify with Meredith, who’s had a pretty hard life. She struggles to be a good person and take care of everyone, which I think is something many women can relate to.

    What part of the story did you find hardest to write? And why?

    The climax. It’s very action-oriented, and I had a bit of trouble with the physics of the fight scene. My husband had to help me with that.

    While Silverton had a sure touch in romancing Meredith, did you find yourself trying to egg her on? "Go for it, gel," etc.

    Absolutely! Sometimes I wondered how she could resist him. [KS: I wanted to tell her, I'd have him, if she didn't want him.]

    I adored the last scene of the book. How did you decide to end the story there?

    I’m so glad you liked it! I wanted to bring Meredith full circle—to bring her home. Originally, the ending was going to take place just a few days after the climax, but a friend suggested that it should take place several weeks later, when she has truly found her happiness and been restored to her rightful home. I wanted readers to share in that.


    What made you decide to be a writer?

    I’ve been writing most of my life—first in university, then as a researcher and writer in the public sector. But I always loved to read fiction of all kinds. It just took me a while to realize that I wanted to write fiction instead of non-fiction. I also owe a real debt to Eloisa James. Her example as both a successful academic and a romance writer was a great inspiration. [KS: In the comments section, do tell us more about your scholarly life and your area of study?]

    How/Why did you choose to become a romance writer?

    I’ve loved reading romances since I was a teenager—they make me happy! [KS: Perfect reason to choose romance.] So when I decided to try my hand at fiction, it made sense to write the thing that I love so much.

    What made you choose to write a Regency-set historical? Would you consider writing in other sub-genres and/or historical time periods?

    I studied writers of the Regency era in grad school, and I just love the history and literature of the period. I’ve loved it ever since I read the novels Jane Austen in high school. And Georgette Heyer, of course!

    How many manuscripts did you write before being published? Was MTM your first project?

    MTM was my second project. My first book was a contemporary category that I wrote with my husband. It was competent but intensely mediocre. [KS: In the comments section, you've simply GOT to dish more details about this experience.]

    Who would you say have been the most important people who mentored, adviced, and encouraged you in your publishing journey?

    Starting out, I had wonderful advice from a friend who is an English professor and an editor. I also got great support from the members of my local RWA chapter, including Sharon Page and Opal Carew. And Julianne MacLean was really incredible to me—she critiqued my early manuscript and gave me a great deal of encouragement. [KS: That is what I love about Romancelandia. The authors are incredibly generous of their time and expertise.]

    As a Canadian author, did you find it much more difficult that your American counterparts in bringing your work in front of agents and editors given that most of them are from NYC?

    No, I really had no difficulties in that respect. There are some really good agents in Canada, too. My first agent was Canadian, and she was wonderful to me.

    The Call Story.

    I had gone out for a walk with my husband. When we returned home, there was a message on my voice mail from my agent, saying that it was very important that I call her. Unfortunately, she was out for most of the day, and I had to wait hours to talk to her. When I finally did get through to her, she put me on hold! Trust me, I was sweating bullets. Fortunately, she came back on a few minutes later and gave me the news that Kensington wanted to offer me a contract.


    Tell us about your next book. When is it being released?

    My next book is called Sex and the Single Earl. [KS: How awesome is this title!] It's the story of Sophie Stanton and Simon, Earl of Trask, two characters introduced in Mastering the Marquess. These two have known each other for a long time, and they drive each other crazy. I had a great time writing this book. It's set entirely in Bath, and it was a lot of fun to work with that setting.

    What are you currently working on?

    I’m starting to work on another Regency-set historical, which will feature characters introduced in Sex and the Single Earl.


    Dramedy or Thriller = Gray’s Anatomy
    Carrot Sticks or Ben & Jerry's = I'm allergic to dairy.
    Color Mauve or Taupe = Neither
    Beach or Forest = I love the ocean.
    Spicy or Mild = Italian
    Cruise or Drive = Life is a highway!
    Cashmere & Silk OR Cotton & Birkenstocks = Linen and sandals?
    LaZBoy or Queen Anne Chair = Chaise lounge
    Marathon or Triathlon = I'd have to get off the chaise lounge.
    Alpha or Beta heroes? Heroines? = Alpha, alpha, alpha. Heroines—all kinds.

    So over to you, readers. Are you into alpha, beta, or gamma heroes? What about the heroines? Are you a fan of the traditional Regencies? What is your chair of choice (or is it a four-seater sofa)?

    One commenter will be chosen at random to win a prize of books and author goodies!

    To find more about Vanessa Kelly's "Regency Romance That Sizzles", visit her on her on the web at

    Monday, May 18, 2009

    2500 Years of History Unzipped

    Napoleon's Privates by Tony PerrottetWhen author Tony Perrottet heard that Napoleon's "baguette" had been stolen by his disgruntled doctor a few days after the emperor's death, he rushed out to New Jersey. Why? Because that's where an eccentric American collector [elderly American urologist John K. Lattimer], who had purchased Napoleon's member at a Parisian auction [in 1977], now kept the actual relic in an old suitcase under his bed.

    The story of Napoleon's privates triggered Perrottet's quest to research other such exotic sagas from history, to discover the actual evidence behind the most famous age-old mysteries: Did Churchill really send condoms of a surprising size to Stalin? Were champagne glasses really molded upon Marie Antoinette's breasts? What was JFK's real secret service? What were Cassanova's best pickup lines? Why did the Marquis de Sade hate his mother-in-law? Will Lincoln ever be outed?

    Saturday, May 16, 2009

    Has Your Marquess Been Mastered?

    Mastering the Marquess by Vanessa KellyMastering the Marquess is Vanessa Kelly's debut Regency historical set in 1815 London, available from Kensington on April 7, 2009.

    "Mastering the Marquess is a first-class historical romance, dripping with sophisticated sensuality and passionate characterizations. A rare gem. Vanessa Kelly is an amazing talent who will capture the hearts of readers everywhere," declares Julianne Maclean.

    Debut historical author Vanessa KellyI've read Meredith Burnley and the Marquess of Silverton's story twice now, and I agree wholeheartedly. Look for a review of Mastering the Marquess on Tuesday and a guest appearance by author Vanessa Kelly on Wednesday, May 20. Stop by to comment for a gift of awesomeness from me for one of the posters.

    Until then...
    Here's a tasty excerpt. Go here to order your copy today.

    Friday, May 15, 2009

    Picture Day Friday....2

    Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous cover. Every superlative I can think of applies. Countess of Scandal releases in February 2010. Congratulations, Laurel McKee!

    Picture Day Friday

    Sconce Stone of Destiny© Historic Scotland

    This is not a mere hunk of rock. In medieval times, many scholars believed it had biblical origins. Some thought it was the pillow on which Jacob dreamed of his ladder. Others believed it had been taken out of Egypt by the daughter of a pharaoh.

    It has been used in coronation ceremonies of the kings of Scotland at Scone, near Perth since Lulach sat on it to be proclaimed king in 1057.

    The English stole it in 1296. For the next 700 years, it was used to crown English kings and queens at Westminster Abbey. The stone was returned to Scotland in 1996 by QE II with the condition that it travel to Westminster for the next coronation (or it crumbles to dust, whichever happens first).

    Wednesday, May 13, 2009

    International Association for the Study of Popular Romance

    IASPR and JPRSThe International Association for the Study of Popular Romance is open for membership. Go to the website and click on the "Join Today!" link, or just go straight to the membership page. Through the power of PayPal, we take all comers and all their various currencies from all over the world.

    Romance Conference in Brisbane

    On August 13-14, 2009, the University of Queensland and Queensland University of Technology will host Popular Romance Studies: an International Conference, to be held in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Romance Writers of Australia, in Brisbane, Australia.

    For decades, scholars have studied representations of romantic love in popular media: novels, films, magazines, comics, advertisements, and elsewhere. They have studied its sexual politics and aesthetic structures, its audiences, its authors, and the industry that produces and distributes it world-wide. For the most part, however, they have done so in isolation, divided by boundaries of nation, genre, and academic discipline.

    IASPR and JPRSThis is the inaugural conference of IASPR, the new International Association for the Study of Popular Romance. The best papers from the conference will be published in the inaugural issue of the Journal for Popular Romance Studies (JPRS), a peer-reviewed online journal to be published by IASPR beginning in February 2010.

    Scholars from Australia, the United States, and elsewhere will convene for this event, which will take place on the QUT campus (Thursday) and at the University of Queensland’s Fryer Library, home to a remarkable archival collection of Australian romance materials. Papers have already been accepted on romance websites in China, Japanese romance manga, Italian romanzo rosa, and the novels of Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer; we are eager to expand the range of talks both geographically and in terms of the media discussed.

    Visit the conference website for more details about the Call for Papers, Registration, and Lodging. Submit a one-page (150-250 word) proposal or abstract no later than May 30, 2009 to the conference organizers; email is preferred. IASPR welcomes proposals from independent scholars, and from romance authors, editors, and publishers, as well as from those with academic affiliation.

    The International Association for the Study of Popular Romance
    University of Queensland
    Queensland University of Technology
    Romance Writers of Australia
    Romance Writers of America

    Tuesday, May 12, 2009

    Happy Release Day, Tessa!

    Today is a special day of a very special lady. The Legend of the Werestag is being released by Samhain Publishing. TLOTW is Tessa Dare's debut book, debut novella, and e-publishing debut.

    Of the book, Ann Aguirre, national bestselling author of Blue Diablo, writes, "Tessa Dare writes with incandescent emotional ferocity, balancing story and character with knife-edged elegance. This is the best novella I have read all year."

    Goddess of the HuntThis isn't a true paranormal romance, but rather a sexy, funny historical romance featuring a quintet of romantically entangled houseguests who become intrigued by the legend of a cursed man-beast. It's also loosely connected to Tessa's July print debut Goddess of the Hunt.

    Smart Bitch Sarah says, "…a perfect compliment of dialogue, sexual and emotional tension, characters who are flawed and real, and a happy ending that is believable and so welcome. I rooted for the protagonists, I was very curious about the story, and I was disappointed by the fact that it was over."

    If a woman could die of humiliation, Cecily Hale would have perished three hours ago. Luke Trenton had finally returned to Swinford Manor, only to cruelly spurn her long-held love. But she couldn’t conveniently die of shame on the spot—oh, no. Instead she joined her friends on this ridiculous search for a legendary man-beast. Now she’ll die here—alone in the woods, at the tusks of a snarling boar.

    Luke left for war a dashing youth and returned a man—just not the same man Cecily fell in love with. His passion for her is stronger than ever, but the ravages of battle changed him in ways she wouldn’t understand. Pushing her away was supposed to save her, not throw her into the path of another inhuman creature…or into the arms of another man.

    For it is a man who rescues Cecily, just as the boar attacks. A mysterious, silent man who disappears into the woods, leaving her with just a glimpse—of a fleeing white deer. Could her rescuer be the man-beast of local lore?

    A dangerous myth has captured Cecily’s imagination, putting Luke on the horns of a dilemma. Unless he summons the passion and tenderness to win her back, he could lose her forever…to the Werestag.

    Tessa's fabulous story can be ordered from My Bookstore and More, Books on Board, and Amazon Kindle.

    [Edit: For a chance to win a free copy, comment on Courtney Milan's blog now or at Dear Author later this afternoon.]

    [Edit: For a bonus free excerpt, visit the Samhain Cafe loop.]

    Monday, May 11, 2009

    My Hero

    A Nigerian proverb says: "Every once in a while, someone comes along, and your life is never ever the same." This is what happened to me about a year ago. As is with my life these days, I met this person online, through his mother's blogs, tweets, photos, and convos. And this person has become my hero, the epitome of the kind of heroes I want to write about in my books.

    My hero's three years old. For half his life, he's been battling cancer with the courage of a lion, the acceptance of a Buddhist monk, the grace of a swimming swan (he adores ducks), and a smile that makes you tumble into love with him at first sight. Through all the invasive surgeries, anguish-causing drugs, and indignities that go hand-in-hand with hospital stays, his smile hasn't wavered and neither have his courtesy, manners, joie de vivre, and laissez-faire attitude.

    He's kind and understanding of his exhausted mother, praises her and thanks her, and doesn't throw tantrums at the hospital staff who have to, by necessity, cause him pain. He's completely faithful to his gray, shaggy bunny, giving and receiving love with all his being. Every chance he gets, he's exercising his body and his mind, to climb higher, to learn more. He's the next generation's Greenie with a love of green spots in urban spaces. A quack, a caw, a patch of green grass, and trees with flowers, that's all he asks of this earth.

    Every once in a rare while in your life, you get a glimpse of paradise, be it a place, a thing, or a person. My hero is he. My thoughts are frequently of him. Maybe some day, I'll meet him and tell him how much he's meant to me. But even if I don't meet him, it's OK; I'll never forget him. How can I? He's enriched my life forever.

    Sunday, May 10, 2009

    Happy Mother's Day

    The chocolate cake that became carrot cake (stuffed bunny likes carrots more) was lopsided (had to be baked twice for soggy middle), single-layered (ate too much batter), and didn't have enough white frosting (lot of licking of spatulas happened)......but it was gorgeous and delicious!! Hubby and Wee had a hit on their hands.

    Friday, May 8, 2009

    Best Book Trailer

    What Happens in London by Julia QuinnThe book trailer for Julia Quinn's July '09 book What Happens in London is the best book trailer I have ever seen.

    As most of you know, I'm not a fan of book trailers. I think they're a waste of money and can be detrimental to converting first-time readers into buying books. Words on a page or in eInk is what the readers want from the writer, and images and words (spoken or in shorthand copy) that fly by in a video don't whet the appetite. Sometimes, they convey the wrong mood, the wrong sense of place, or give off a vibe that doesn't jive with the characters.

    This was before I saw JQ's trailer. Now, like Laurel from Laurel & Hardy, I have to eat a black bowler hat. Finally, I see a video worthy of the author's writing and of creating a buzz for the story all by itself.

    JQ's marketing campaign for this book has been brilliant. First there was the title, then the cover, then teaser copy that she herself wrote, first & last lines of her story, excerpts, contests, the soundtrack, the book trailer, and now the first chapter.

    [Edit: Hah! I was reading through my blogs in Google Reader. And what do I find? WaxCreative blogging eloquent about JQ's book trailer. The actress in the video is JQ's cousin Talia Gottlieb and the artistic producer is Brady Hall.]

    [Edit: Per suggestion from JQ, I'm embedding the video here directly.]

    Picture Day Friday

    Castle Mespelbrunn, built between Frankfurt and Würzburg Germany in 1412 by Echter of Mespelbrunn, is of a medieval moated design with a romanesque–renaissance style.

    Castle Mespelbrunn in 1412 near Frankfurt

    Wednesday, May 6, 2009

    Summer on Blossom Street by Debbie Macomber

    Tuesday, May 5, 2009

    Meme of Superlatives

    I stole this meme of superlatives from Janga.

    1. The romance novel that made you laugh the most.
    Practice Makes Perfect by Julie James

    2. The romance novel that made you cry the most.
    Sugar Daddy by Lisa Kleypas

    3. The first romance novel you read.
    —something by Barbara Cartland

    4. The most recent romance novel you read.
    One Knight Only by Julia Latham

    5. The romance novel with the best opening scene.
    Untouched by Anna Campbell

    6. The romance novel with the best ending.
    My Lady Notorious by Jo Beverley

    7. The romance novel with the ending you most want to change.
    To Sin With A Stranger by Kathryn Caskie (ending's far too drawn out)

    8. The romance novel you most want to see made into a movie.
    Odd Mom Out by Jane Porter

    9. The romance novel with the best title.
    Romancing Mr. Bridgerton by Julia Quinn

    10. The romance novel with the best love scene.
    Tall, Dark, Texan by Jodi Thomas

    11. The romance novel with the hero you most want to fall in love with.
    Wicked Little Game by Christine Wells
    Mine Till Midnight by Lisa Kleypas

    12. The romance novel with the heroine you like the most.
    Ransom by Julie Garwood

    Monday, May 4, 2009

    Bulwer-Lytton Howlers

    Since 1982, the English Department at San Jose State University has sponsored the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest, a whimsical literary competition that challenges entrants to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels.

    The contest was the brainchild of Professor Scott Rice. Sentenced to write a seminar paper on a minor Victorian novelist, he chose the man with the funny hyphenated name, Edward George Earle Bulwer-Lytton, Baron of Lytton (1803-73), who was best known for perpetrating The Last Days of Pompeii, Eugene Aram, The Coming Race, and Paul Clifford, whose famous opener has been plagiarized repeatedly by the cartoon beagle Snoopy. No less impressively, Lytton coined phrases that have become common parlance in our language: "the pen is mightier than the sword," "the great unwashed," and "the almighty dollar."

    Baron of LyttonIn his researches, Dr. Rice unearthed this pearl of an opener...

    "It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents—except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets (for it is in London that our scene lies), rattling along the housetops, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness." —Edward George Bulwer-Lytton, Paul Clifford (1830)

    And so was born the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest. Here's a Lyttony of grand prize winners...

    "The camel died quite suddenly on the second day, and Selena fretted sulkily and, buffing her already impeccable nails—not for the first time since the journey began—pondered snidely if this would dissolve into a vignette of minor inconveniences like all the other holidays spent with Basil."
    —Gail Cain, San Francisco, CA (1983 Winner)

    "The lovely woman-child Kaa was mercilessly chained to the cruel post of the warrior-chief Beast, with his barbarous tribe now stacking wood at her nubile feet, when the strong, clear voice of the poetic and heroic Handsomas roared, 'Flick your Bic, crisp that chick, and you'll feel my steel through your last meal.'"
    —Steven Garman, Pensacola, FL (1984 Winner)

    "As the newest Lady Turnpot descended into the kitchen wrapped only in her celery-green dressing gown, her creamy bosom rising and falling like a temperamental souffle, her tart mouth pursed in distaste, the sous-chef whispered to the scullery boy, 'I don't know what to make of her.'"
    —Laurel Fortuner, Montendre, France (1992 Winner)

    "She wasn't really my type, a hard-looking but untalented reporter from the local cat box liner, but the first second that the third-rate representative of the fourth estate cracked open a new fifth of old Scotch, my sixth sense said seventh heaven was as close as an eighth note from Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, so, nervous as a tenth grader drowning in eleventh-hour cramming for a physics exam, I swept her into my longing arms, and, humming The Twelfth of Never, I got lucky on Friday the thirteenth."
    —Wm. W. "Buddy" Ocheltree, Port Townsend, WA (1993 Winner)

    Have you come across any real-life howlers in your reading? If so, without mentioning the title or author, please do mention the opening sentence.

    If you haven't across such eggregious eye-rolling efforts, then how about turning your creativity to coming up with something?

    Friday, May 1, 2009

    Picture Day Friday

    Fortified wall of a hilltop burh (burgh or castle) built by King Alfred the Great in the southwestern Anglo-Saxon principality of Wessex in the late 800s.

    Fortified Wall of a Burh in Wessex