mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
 If you're a scholar of folklore, Stith Thomas is an honored name.  He created Motif-index of folk-literature : a classification of narrative elements in folktales, ballads, myths, fables, mediaeval romances, exempla, fabliaux, jest-books, and local legends.   This is and was the Dewey Decimal system for folklore.  

T11.4.4. Love through seeing marks of lady’s teeth in fruit which she has bitten

T11.6. Wish for wife red as blood, white as snow, black as raven.
T85.4.1. Ring of Fastrada. (Tove‘s magic ring.) Lover keeps body of dead mistress (wife) intact by means of magic ring. When ring is removed from her finger, the body immediately decays and he is cured of his love. 

A full six volumes of Stith Thomas will set you back a pretty penny.  But the University of Alberta has put it online!  Hurrah!
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
I just opened a brand-new book to a random page.
The best description of medieval ibex-hunting is given, again, by Gaston Phoebus. He obviously hunted ibex himself, but only faute de mieux, and he of course was a fanatic; there is no indication that many other persons of his social level did the same, and the creature was in any case unavailable in most areas, including the civilized lowlands of England and northern France.
I defy you to read that aloud with a straight face.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
I just removed an entire liquor-box full* of books from the cookbook shelf, enabling me to shelve the cookbooks that were on the floor! Bliss!

My secret? I installed BookCatalogue on my Android** smartphone. Then my husband pulled books we didn't need often. I scanned the barcodes, he read out ISBNs for pre-barcode books, and I hand-catalogued pre-ISBN books. All of them were labeled 2014-01. Then the box was labeled 2014-01. Then -gasp- the box was taped shut! Oh bliss oh rapture oh Julia Child is back where she belongs*** again!

Next up: the bedroom shelves, thus exposing the bedroom floor. Whee!

* So what's your unit of measurement?
** There are iOS equivalents.
*** On the shelf. Nobody puts Julia in the corner.

Note for those not currently inhabiting my mind: Throwing away books causes anxiety. Deciding which books I don't need immediately causes anxiety, because WHAT IF I WANT THEM? Catalogued books don't cause anxiety. Furthermore, the three-step "Do I need this now? Will I need it someday? Do I really need it at all?" is much, much less strenuous than "Do I want this, or do I want to throw it away?"

Note: "Throw it away" here means "donate to the library book sale", not "Consign it to the flamy fires of DOOM".

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