Third and last knitted Christmas present for 2018

Jumper with Fair Isle band (Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino Book 6, Two colour raglan jumper)

I consider myself to have an enquiring mind, but sometimes serendipitous discoveries make you stop dead and wonder just how you’ve managed to keep up with this self deception for so long. Forty ++ years ago I went up to Oxford where the three  university terms, starting in October are called Michaelmas, Hilary and Trinity. Michaelmas gets its name from the feast of St Michael and All Angels, celebrated on the 29th of September, while Trinity comes from Trinity Sunday in summer. So far, so good. Hilary, I thought was a bit of an oddball but I never really gave it any thought. Then today, in The Times I discover that tomorrow, the 13th of January is St Hilary’s Day. And I never even knew there was a saint called Hilary. To be fair, Hilary wasn’t a front line, in your face sort of saint and it’s still a bit of a mystery why he, a French bishop of the C4th, should have given his name to the spring term not only of Oxford University and Trinity College Dublin but also to the English legal year – perhaps no other saints were available. Curious.

Detail of Fair isle pattern (from Mary Jane Mucklestone’s 200 Fair Isle Designs; Search Press 2011)

The only other thing I discovered about St Hilary – and I didn’t know this before either – is that his feast day has the reputation of being the coldest day of the year, indeed, according to records, St Hilary’s Day has on average, often been the coldest day of the year and is frequently frosty; (‘on average’ and ‘often’ somewhat confuse me as to the impressiveness of this claim, but, there you go.)

Sampling Fair Isle designs (from Mary Jane Mucklestone’s 200 Fair Isle Designs; Search Press 2011)

But it is still cold enough for jumpers and here is my last hand knitted Christmas present. Lots of playing around with samples for the Fair Isle was great fun and I could happily knit another jumper with the nice pale blue background for the Fair Isle flowers. David’s granddaughter is half Chinese with dark brown hair and the strong colour of the plum/purple of the body of the jumper  looks lovely on her.

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4 Comments

  1. Linda Pennell
    Posted January 13, 2019 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Hello Mary. I want to send you a link to an interesting article but am hopeless with technology! Is there an email address I can use? Have treid cut and paste but it won’t work! Best wishes Linda Pennell

    • Mary Addison
      Posted January 16, 2019 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

      Linda, hope you got my email. Sorry not to have checked before but am on granny duty while journalist daughter and son-in-law are occupied reporting Brexit.

  2. Posted January 13, 2019 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    I’ve always wondered about “Hilary Term”, but I was never sure what to do to look it up!

    • Mary Addison
      Posted January 16, 2019 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

      I know, we use these terms and tuck away the idea that we’ll find out where they come from … but somehow we never get round to it.

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