Just a minute to start the day

The "Waltz in D flat major", opus 64, No. 1, popularly known as the "Minute Waltz" is a waltz for solo piano by Frédéric Chopin.

The piece is given the tempo marking "Molto vivace". He wrote it in 1847 and published it in Leipzig the same year, as the first of the opus 64 Trois Valses, dedicating it to "To Mme. la Comtesse Delphine Potocka". Since the second waltz is in the key of C-sharp minor, the "Minute" waltz contrasts by being in the enharmonic parallel major key (D-flat major).

Despite its nickname, a typical performance of the work will last between one and a half and two and a half minutes; this is because Chopin's publisher, who coined the nickname, intended the "minute" to mean "small". The waltz, though considered by many to be brilliant, is not grand or long. It is more playful than many of the other waltzes. Camille Bourniquel, one of Chopin's biographers, reminds the reader that Chopin, with this waltz, was trying to depict Georges Sand and his dog chasing it's tail in their yard; indeed, Chopin originally named the piece "Petit chien" (Little Dog).

Dieu Le Roy
de Brantigny


Common Catholic prayers in French

I love these prayers, I have said them all my life, albiet in English, but they become mystical when they are prayed in French. These prayers are so well adapted to the French language that even saying them becomes a song, and as the saint says "...he who sings prays twice."

Le " Notre Père"
Notre Père qui êtes aux cieux, que votre nom soit sanctifié, que votre règne arrive, que votre volonté soit faite sur la terre comme au ciel. Donnez nous aujourd'hui notre pain quotidien; pardonnez nous nos offenses comme nous pardonnons à ceux qui nous ont offensés; et ne nous laissez pas succomber à la tentation; mais délivrez nous du mal. Ainsi soit-il.

Ave Maria
Je vous salue Marie, Marie pleine de grâce, le Seigneur est avec vous, Vous êtes bénieentre toute les femmes, et Jésus, le fruit de vos entrailles, est béni. Sainte Marie, Mère de Dieu, priez pour nous, pauvres pécheurs, maintenant et à l'heure de notre mort. Ainsi soit-il

Je crois en Dieu, le Père tout puissant, Créateur du ciel et de la terre, et en Jésus-Christ son fils unique, Notre-Seigneur, qui a été conçu du Saint Esprit, est né de la Vierge Marie, a souffert sous Ponce Pilate, a été crucifié, est mort, a été enseveli; est descendu aux enfers; le troisième jour, est ressucité des morts, est monté aux cieux, est assis à la droite de Dieu le Père tout-puissant, d'où il viendra juger les vivants et les morts.

Je crois au Saint Esprit, à la Sainte Eglise Catholique, à la communion des Saints, à la rémission des péchés, à la résurection de la chair, à la vie éternelle. Ainsi soit-il

Merci, Le Sacré Coeur de Jésus!

Dieu Le Roy!
de Brantigny

Etiquette in the 18th century

Maria-Elena has posted some rules from the 18th century French court. Each one makes sense, honours the woman and the man. For those of us who attended Catholic School in the 60s and 70s the nuns taught us similar decorum. I also have to add that the rules of etiquette in the naval service ( my experience and training are from the Marine Corps) are just a formal, for example, *In the presence of the Commanding Officer you stood at attention until being told to stand at ease. *Replies to questions, and questions to an officer or senior are given in the third person. *When walking in uniform with a woman, hand holding is forbidden. * One knock and one knock when attempting to see the Commanding Officer, Executive Officer and especially the Sergeant Major (annoying the Sergeant Major was not a good idea) .

...Paris Atelier explains the elaborate rules of etiquette at the French court which drove Marie-Antoinette to distraction. (Her family had been very informal, as royals go.) Here are a few of the rules:

*People who wanted to speak to the king could not knock on his door. Instead, using the left little finger, they had to gently scratch on the door, until they were granted permission to enter. As a result, many courtiers grew that fingernail longer than the others!

*A lady never held hands or linked arms with a gentleman. It was in very bad taste and nearly impossible because a woman’s skirts were so wide. She was to place her hand on top of the gentleman’s bent arm as they strolled through the gardens and chambers of Versailles. Ladies were only allowed to touch their fingertips with the men. Imagine that! Funny with all of the scandal that went on!

*The king and queen always had a fauteuil (armchair) to sit on. In their presence, no one else was allowed an armchair, unless you were also a monarch.

*A chair with a back but no arms was allowed for those closest in rank to the king, such as his brother or children.

*The tabouret, a padded stool was awarded to those holding the rank of duchess. Lesser ranking nobility would be expected to stand.

* Only ushers were allowed to open doors. If you desired to leave the room, you had to wait for the usher to open the door.

Catherine Delors writes about an 18th century version of a blind date...

Thanks and a tip of the beret to the authoresses Catherine Delors, and Maria-Elena Vidal.

Dieu Le Roy!
de Brantigny

A liturgical nightmare

Good Shepherd Parish - Bad Liturgy

Christopher tells a story with pictures about a trip to a Kansas parish.

Dieu le Roy!
de Brantigny


Jim Crow is alive in the Senate

Newly appointed Illinois Senator Roland Burris has been told in effect, you are not allowed to come through this door. Strikingly reminiscent of the Jim Crow laws that lasted until the 1960's Roland Burris was not allowed to enter into the Senate of the United States today.
Illinois Governor in trouble Rod Blagojevich appointed Roland Burris to take the Senate seat of the President elect Barack Hussein Obama. Blagojevich is under a cloud, for allegedly seeking bribes in order to appoint an Obama replacement. Blagojevich had been accused of being out of his mind and therefore incapable to act as governor appointed the African-American Roland Burris to the seat. The Illinois Secretary of State has refused to certify the appointment, even though Burris is qualified, by Illinois state law and by federal law.
In a statement dec 30 Reid said, "... But this is not about Mr. Burris; it is about the integrity of a governor accused of attempting to sell this United States Senate seat. Under these circumstances, anyone appointed by Gov. Blagojevich cannot be an effective representative of the people of Illinois and, as we have said, will not be seated by the Democratic Caucus..." One is foced to ask about the integrity of Senator Harry Reid and his inforcement of Jm Crow at the intrance to the Senate.
As of this date Governor Blagojevich has not been tryed, found guilty, convicted, impeached, and deposed. Until that happens, Blago is still the Governor of Illinois.
Is it no reason that the world looks at the United States Government and just don't take us seriousely?
Reason #510 to be a monarchist.
Dieu Le Roy!
de Brantigny

Gays Vandalize San Francisco Church

January 6th, 2009 by Catholic League

Most Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, in the heart of San Francisco’s gay Castro community, was vandalized over the weekend by opponents of Proposition 8, the California resolution passed by voters in November that rejected gay marriage. Swastikas were painted on the church and the names Ratzinger (referring to Pope Benedict XVI) and Niederauer (the San Francisco Archbishop) were scrawled besides the Nazi symbol.

Catholic League president Bill Donohue is asking Catholics nationwide to respond to this incident:

“In the wake of Proposition 8, innocent persons have been assaulted, churches have been vandalized, a white substance resembling anthrax was sent to the Knights of Columbus and to Mormon temples, supporters of traditional marriage have been branded Nazis, African Americans have been called the ‘N-word,’ houses and cars have been trashed, etc. Unfortunately, most of those in the gay community have been silent about these acts.

“Part of the blame for the latest attack goes to San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Both Newsom and the Board have shown nothing but contempt for the First Amendment rights of Catholics. When crucifixes are sold as sex toys and Catholic sensibilities are assaulted by naked men in the street at the annual Folsom Street Fair, they say nothing. When gay men dressed as nuns show up at Mass-at the same church-they say nothing. But the Board was quite vocal about condemning the Catholic Church in 2006, something which led to a lawsuit triggered by the Catholic League and the Thomas More Law Center.

“For those who love to write about ‘root causes,’ let them ponder the guilt of these public officials. Moreover, leaders in the gay community show no leadership when it comes to denouncing incivility committed in the name of gay rights. This has got to end.”

Actually that is not the point. Many gays, but not all, feel it is a right to "get" married as if it were some badge of morality. They show by their actions that they believe can force acceptance of their lifestyle upon a nation which is mostly opposed to it. One can not legislate morality we can only demonstrate truth. We Christians believe in the laws that scripture contains, and the Church teaches, to wit: homosexuality is a disorder.

Facing Christ at the judgement, they will not be able to say "...but it was the law." It will not be a defense (any more than abortionist will be able to say the same). A homosexual union defies natural law. Natural law is Gods law. Since they can not reproduce offspring homosexual marriage is not part of natural law. Gods law always triumphs over mans law. In this dictatorship of democracy those laws which permitt homosexual marriage are made only to satisfy a that minority which desires to maintain a false veneer of wholesomeness they would otherwise not be able to enjoy. The article above is proof of their wholesomeness.

I do not have more rights as a non-homosexual, I can not marry a man any more than a homosexual man can. Difference is, I don't want to.

The Jacobin Mayor of San Francisco "Any twosome" Newsom may be reached at this email address. gavin.newsom@sfgov.org take a minute to write him a letter.

Dieu le Roy!
de Brantigny


Today is Epiphany. This date marks the second revealing of the Saviour. The first revealing was on Christmas when Christ was revealed by God to the Jews in the form of the shepherds. The second is today when Christ was revealed to the gentiles, in the person of the three Kings who tradition tells us were from the corners of the (known) world. Sunday the 11th will mark the third revelation at the Baptism of Christ. When the Holy Spirit appears in the form of a Dove, and the Voice of God is heard saying "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased."

de Brantigny

Galettes du Roy et Tarte Chèvre et Épinards

From Laudem Gloriae, Christine had posted two recipes from la Belle France. It was not possible to redirect these so I send the blog URL and copied them. Catherine has posted another post which I find fascinating, whioch is slightly different, it may be found here, from whence I unabashedly copied the painting. (Thanks Catherine!) Another blog is comes from Hôtel West-End written in Nice it may be found here...

Galettes du Roy.

In France, around the time of the Feast of the Epiphany, one sees patisseries filled with galettes du roi to celebrate the gifts brought by the three kings to the infant Jesus. Several weeks later, the patisserires have emptied of these pastries, except the handful sold at reduced prices. It consists of flaky pastry filled with frangipane, in which is hidden the little figurine (originally porcelaine, now plastic) of a king. The one who receives the piece with the figurine becomes "king" for the day and must offer the next galette. (A similar tradition is held in some of the southern states, including Louisiana, which associates the cake with Mardi Gras.) It has a mild, not oversweet flavor (this is one of the nice things about pastry here--it is sweet enough, and no more), and the pastry is light and flaky. It goes perfectly with a steaming cup of Assam.

500g (17 oz) flaky pastry dough
250g (8.5 oz) of frangipane cream
1 egg
Porcelaine figurine

Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius (325f). Whip the eggs in a bowl. Roll out half the dough into a flat square. Pour the frangipane into the center in the shape of a circle of about 1-2 cm thickness. Brush the egg on the surrounding dough. Place the figurine anywhere in the cream. Flatten the other half of the dough into a square, and place firmly over the mixture. Cut the dough in a circle around the frangipane and press the edges. Brush egg over the dough. You may make criss-cross designs into the dough with the edge of a knife. Place in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the dough rises and turns golden brown.

Tarte Chèvre et Épinards

Goat cheese? Spinach? Pastry? What else is there to say? Serves six

Flaky pastry dough
2 goat cheese logs chopped into 1 cm rolls
400g (32 oz) chopped spinach
4 eggs
(optional: grated Gruyère)

Pre-heat the oven to 200 (325f)degrees Celsius. Mix the eggs and grated Gruyère and pepper. Flatten the dough into a 9-inch pie pan. Cover the bottom with spinach. Pour egg mixture over the spinach, and arrange goat cheese on top. Bake for 30 minutes.

Warning: Not good for the figure.

Thanks and a tip of the beret to Laudem Gloriae. I should not do a recipe when I am hungry.

de Brantigny

Watch a Gallete being made!


Jehanne by Antonin Mercie

Under a staircase on the ground floor of the Art Institute of Chicago is hidden the bust of The Maid by Antonin Mercie. I found this quite by accident on afternoon as I was visiting the Institute for a Mary Cassat exhibition several years ago. At the time I paused for a second, gave it a glance and continued to the exhibition. Weeks later the bust reappeared in my mind and I called my sister who works near by and asked her to run over on her luncheon and take some photos for me. I present this now, as a first article on St. Joan of Arc, or as she was called during her lifetime, La Pucelle. (simply The Maid).

I know I will never do her story justice, so I will include links to my articles which will expound on and verify facts.

Jhesu + Marie
de Brantigny

January 6, Nativity of Ste Jehanne

Today the 6th day of January, is the birthday of Ste Jehanne. I prefer the last spelling which I wrote, it is the way she spelled it in the existing letters, still readable. Jehanne, never called herself D'Arc, this is a relatively modern addition to her name. It her time she was simply known as Jehanne, or Jeanette her diminutive.

Many people in our time wish to diminish her memory by attempting to affix illnesses to her which would account for her "voices". How easy is it to dismish her message, by saying her voices were a dementia, caused by poor food, cold and deprivation.

I do know this, because of Jehanne, I today am a Catholic. If the English would have conquered France and the heretical ways would have been enforced upon France after Henry VIII the Eldest Daughter of the Church would be just a note in a history book. For Jehanne saved France, by God's command and with God's help. She was commanded by God to go and tell the Dauphin to be crowned, not president but King.

Jehanne like Mary remained faithful and unswerving in her calling. With a pure spirit and clean heart she rid the French Army of those things which are most dangerous to an army, sin and licentiousness. It was by her example that the men of France regained their heart, saw their duty and completed their God given mission.

The prestige of the Maid, or Pucelle as she became to known as was such that even at the height of the de-Christianization of France during the terror her shrine remained untouched by the mob.

So today I will take a few minutes to remember her, and thank her for what she did. I pray that she looks down not upon her homeland and intercedes with God to return France and restore the King once more.

At this site you may find out everything you ever could ask about the Maid, it is a site dedicated to St Joan by my dear friend Virginia Frohlick,... Here you will find a web site of Ben Kennedy who has placed some of my Joan article in his blog (God only knows why)...
A prayer to Ste Joan in French and in English here...

One of many mysteries concerning the maid is here...

The 1929 Film "Passion of Joan of Arc" in its entirety here...

An article on Jehanne's armor may be read here...

Jhesu + Marie
de Brantigny

What is it about Paris?

The Parisians are very hard on cars. I have copied two photos from a site called Paris Daily Photo. Either these Parisians are real bad at parking their cars or it is another protest.

As I watched the news this morning and a guest report was from a member of the Israeli Information service. He was from Askelon in Israel. In his reporting he allowed something of his feelings to surface. His mother still lives in Askelon. In the preceding 3 months she has resorted to hiding in her hall to escape possible death from rocket attacks by the Hamas in Gaza. He did like the idea of his mother having to find refuge in her hall from the daily occurrence of rocket attacks. We never see the Israeli side. It exists yet nothing from our media. Why is it we only see the poor defenseless Palestinians being shelled, hurt, screaming in pain and for "justice"? I have watched this my whole life. It has never changed. The PLO, Hamas, Syria, Egypt, Hezbolla attack Israel, Israel defends herself (and does so well) and then is called the aggressor. Consider the UN, who is unwilling to do anything to stop Hamas. A cease fire will be called for while Hamas, rearm, in trench and break the cease fire only to be beat down again. It has been the same since the Crusades. (It is in the Qu'ran, to parley a truce while rebuilding ones forces, only to attack again.) Does any one but Israel realize what is at stake?

I have my own feelings about the middle east, and though they are not the subject of this article, I will say if my neighbour started shooting up my house, I asked him to stop and he didn't, the sheriff (UN) was unable (or unwilling) to stop him, I would react in the same way as Israel. ...and yet in cities around the world have demonstrations which call for Israel to unilaterally end the hostilities!

Three years ago my daughter* was studying in France when Muslim thugs burned cars in every major city. I would sit and watch wondering when the French government would step in and stop them. So I ask myself one more time, "How does one allow his property to be destroyed like this and say nothing, do nothing?" What is this madness when the whole world seems turned upside down?

Please, someone tell the Parisians that the Commune is over, the time for barricades is over, pull down the red flag, and just breathe.

Dieu le Roy!
de Brantigny

*Genevieve was questioned by French police because she has Mediterranean looks, and wearing a pashmina she could appear as a Muslim. She produced her U.S. passport was taken home in a French police car and released.


Heiligenstadt Testament

In May 1802, on the advice of Johann Adam Schmidt, Beethoven went to Heiligenstadt to rest. This residence was separate from the one at Vienna: it took about an hour to get there by carriage.

Depressed and unable to hide his increasing infirmity, Beethoven wrote, on October 6th 1802 a document which he guarded carefully afterwards, entitled "The Heiligenstadt Testament". In it he revealed his deafness and expressed his disgust. A second part of the testament was written a few days later, on October 10th 1802.

It is noted that three times the composer has omitted to write the christian name of his second brother, Johann.

Beethoven later wrote two more wills: in 1824, and, just before his death, in 1827.