Thursday, December 23, 2004 - Celebrate Yule the 'Viking Way' - Dec. 23, 2003: "OSLO, Norway (AP) -- If the Vikings had seen pictures of Santa Claus cruising the skies in a sleigh pulled by reindeer, they probably would have assumed he was catching a ride with Thor, the Norse god of thunder.

According to Viking traditions, which carry over into modern Scandinavian Jul -- or Yule -- celebrations, Thor's personal transport was a flying wagon pulled by a team of horned goats.

'The idea of St. Nicholas got very much mixed in with Thor's transport when it comes to the sled with flying reindeer,' said Helge Soerheim of the Archaeological Museum in Stavanger.

Some say the idea of Father Christmas or Santa bringing gifts stems from Norse mythology, too, since the most powerful of the Viking gods, Odin, was credited with doing the exact same thing, according to the Norwegian research magazine Forskning.
Even though Christianity came to Scandinavia a millennium ago, modern celebrations of Christmas hark back to the pagan winter feast of Jul, which comes from the Norse word 'Jol' meaning fun and party. "

Ancient Jul was celebrated on December 21, then believed to be the longest night of the year. It was easy to shift to the Christian celebration that takes place December 24.
Merry Christmas in over 350 languages: "Danish -
Glædelig Jul og godt nytår "

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Danish is spoken by 5,000,000 in Denmark, where it is the official language. Also spoken in; Greenland, USA, Germany, Canada & Norway.

The history of the Danish language may be divided into three main periods:
Old Danish (800-1100),
Middle Danish (1100-1500),
and Modern Danish (from 1500).

By about 1500, the chief characteristics of Danish had evolved, and it began to be used as a national language.

Danish had virtually completed its grammatical development by the beginning of the 18th century, and it became a significant cultural and literary language.

In the 19th and 20th centuries, fewer dialects were spoken, the interaction between spoken and written language increased, and the vocabulary expanded through the assimilation of German, French, and English words, including many technical terms.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

DSU Københavnskredsen

I dag har afdelingssamarbejdet mellem Østerbro og Indre By et solidt fundament af aktiviteter til vores medlemmer, dels med Ole Hækkerup som fast mødedeltager, men også fordi vi til hvert afdelingsmøde har en oplægsholder om et aktuelt politisk emne. Ingen politik, ingen afdeling - synes at være vores holdning.

Af foreløbige politiske emner kan bl.a. nævnes regeringens pinsepakke, forsvarspolitik og finanslovsforslag for 1999 med Ole, og integrationspakken (Winni Aakermann), ligestilling (Gritt Overbeck/Tina Feldt), arbejdsmarkedspolitik (Henrik Falk) og sidst, men ikke mindst Københavns budget for 1998 mod Johs Nymark, Socialdemokratiets gruppeformand i Borgerrepræsentationen.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Peddie School

"The school’s writer-in-residence Paul Watkins has juggled a dual life as both a successful author and teacher for the last 16 years. The author of 12 books, Watkins recently published two new books: a travel guide, The Fellowship of Ghosts, and a novel, Thunder God. "

Watkins’ newest novel is the story of a Viking’s journey “beyond the boundaries of the known world.”

The Fellowship of Ghosts is a ‘travel chronicle’ from Watkins’ journeys in Norway. After National Geographic offered him the opportunity to travel to any destination and simply write about it, Watkins began a three-year process of researching. Electing not to go to the typical Paris or Hawaii, Watkins instead chose Norway because “it’s the end of the earth.”

"The best advice Watkins has for young, aspiring writers is to write every day. But he added that writing every day can be a frustrating task.

“I remember untying my right shoe and tying the shoelace to the table,” he said of his early career. Watkins is also involved with a Welsh international literary prize that is awarded every year. Because of his Welsh heritage, Watkins will be introducing the prize to a large press corps in New York.