On this day…

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The church in Eyam, circa 1890.

Tomorrow the village of Eyam in Derbyshire, England recognises “Plague Sunday”.

The day remembers the decision of the village’s reverend and his wife – in 1665 – to convince the plague-stricken residents to barricade themselves in so that the disease wouldn’t spread to other villages in the area.

Hundreds of people died, but other communities survived.

Below is a picture from last year, when we visited the old well on a hilltop outside the village, which is where others would come to leave the people of Eyam food.

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Dunluce Castle

I visited Dunluce Castle yesterday afternoon (and it was free because of a European heritage weekend!). That’s me in the last picture, rushing back to the car when it started pouring rain!

I’ve been to the castle before, but forgot how enormous it is, on the edge of a windy cliff. A few centuries ago some of the castle actually fell into the sea.

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Labour Day

A picnic to celebrate Labour Day in New South Wales in the first half of the twentieth century. The photograph was taken by Australian photojournalist Sam Hood (1872-1953).

Labour Day in 2017 falls on the 2nd of October in the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales and South Australia.

Ukrainian Christmas

The Adoration of the Shepherds, (Поклоніння пастухів). A Ukrainian religious painting taken from an iconostasis, and dated between 1650 and 1700.

The 6th of January is Christmas Eve for Ukrainians of all Christian denominations.

The main Christmas celebrations take place at this time.

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The banning of Christmas

The celebration of Christmas was banned by Puritans in Boston, Colonial America in 1659. The ban was revoked by an English governor in 1681, however Christmas celebrations did not gain popularity in the area until the middle of the nineteenth century.

Through these years the holiday continued to be observed in other parts of America. It fell out of favour after the American Revolution, but returned to favour some years afterwards.

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