From Richard Fletcher's Moorish Spain, I learn, inter alia, that:-
- The Spanish for horseman – jinete – comes from a North African tribal confederation of light cavalry, the Zanata. There's an English word, too, new to me – 'jennet'. Which is 'a small Spanish horse'.
- The first translation of the Koran into a Western language was by an Englishman, Robert of Ketton, in 1143. Ketton lies in the heart of Rutland.
- The English Exchequer is named after a ruled and chequered tablecloth which was used as an abacus from the early 12th century onwards. And:-
- Roger Bacon was the pupil of a bishop-scholar called Robert Grosseteste. With whom his fellow students probably had some fun when his name was called from the class register.
- 85% of Spaniards think people lie on their CVs as to the level of their English.
- 87% of Spaniards say they don't lie on their CV as regards the same thing.
- 100% of foreigners – and probably Spaniards too – believe that 100% of the latter are lying.
Finally:- Here's a fulsome review of the book on English manners I mentioned yesterday. Mr Hitchings sounds like a man worth knowing. Perhaps in another age he would have translated the Koran into Latin. Or English, even.