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xml:lang="en" lang="en" dir="ltr"> Chapter 69: 665-677 - Thomas Pynchon Wiki | Mason & Dixon

Chapter 69: 665-677

Page 665

Chicken on a Line
A chicken can be hypnotized, or put into a trance, by holding its head down against the ground, and continuously drawing a line along the ground with a stick or a finger, starting at its beak and extending straight outward in front of the chicken. If the chicken is hypnotized in this manner, it will remain immobile for somewhere between 15 seconds and 30 minutes, continuing to stare at the line. This may not be clinical hypnosis, but instead a case of tonic immobility. Instead of a hypnotic state, the chicken's reactions are more akin to a turtle moving into its shell, or a deer freezing from a spotlight--a defensive mechanism intended to feign death, albeit poorly... The first known written reference for this method came in 1646, in Mirabile Experimentum de Imaginatione Gallinae by Athanasius Kircher. From WIKI

Black Hole of Calcutta
See page 109.

Page 668

what Voltaire wrote... to the Count and Countess d'Argental
1763 – Letter to d’Argental: Although not directly an assessment quotation, this letter from Voltaire to Charles Augustin Feriol, comte d'Argental (date uncertain – likely around 1763) illustrates Voltaire's position and actions about the matter: "Will the government not forgive me for having said that the English took Canada, which I had, incidentally, offered, four years ago, to sell to the English, which would have ended everything, and which Mr Pitt’s brother had proposed to me"... "A few acres of snow" (in the original French, "quelques arpents de neige") is one of several quotations from Voltaire, the 18th-century writer, which are representative of his sneering evaluation of Canada, and by extension New France's, lack of economic value and strategic importance to 18th-century France. Because of its representative value and its concision, it has become rooted into popular Canadian culture and it is regularly quoted by Canadians. From WIKI - Also, see LINK

sans la voix de la Le More et le Canard de Vaucanson, vous n'auriez rien que fit ressouvenir de la gloire de la France
Without the voice of Le More and the Vaucanson duck, you would have nothing to remind you of the glory of France

Le More = Catherine-Nicole Lemaure Biography, (b. Paris, 3 Aug 1704; d. Paris, 1786), French soprano.

Fille
Girl, woman, etc.

Ordure
n. - excrement, dung. From WIKI

Besozzi
See page 413.

Bas-mondain
Low-worldly

Page 669

Bukhara
Bukhara, also transliterated Bukhoro and Bokhara, from the Soghdian βuxārak ("lucky place"), is the capital of the Bukhara Province (viloyat) of Uzbekistan. The region around Bukhara has been inhabited for at least five millennia and the city itself has existed for half that time. Located on the Silk Road, the city has long been a center of trade, scholarship, culture, and religion. From WIKI

Samarkand
Samarkand is the second-largest city in Uzbekistan and the capital of Samarqand Province. The city is most noted for its central position on the Silk Road between China and the West, and for being an Islamic centre for scholarly study. The Bibi-Khanym Mosque remains one of the city's most famous landmarks. The Registan was the ancient centre of the city. In 2001, UNESCO inscribed the 2,750-year-old city on the World Heritage List as Samarkand - Crossroads of Cultures. From WIKI

Signore Drivelli
The manager's name is a play on the expression "drivel", entertainment of a mindless or nonsensical nature.

Two Sicilies
The Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, commonly known as just the Two Sicilies, was the largest of the Italian states before unification. It lasted until 1861, when it was annexed by the Kingdom of Italy. The kingdom had its capital in Naples and was commonly referred to in English as the Kingdom of Naples. The kingdom extended over the southern part of mainland Italy and the island of Sicily. It united two older kingdoms of the Mediterranean which had shared some common history; the Kingdom of Naples, consisting of the southern part of the Italian Peninsula, and the Kingdom of Sicily, consisting of the island of Sicily. From WIKI

Page 671

Colonel Byrd
See page 395.

Great Dismal
See page 279.

Page 673

Delaware Chief Catfish
Delaware Indian chief Tangooqua, commonly known as "Catfish", had a camp on a branch of Chartiers Creek in what is now part of the city of Washington, PA. The French labeled the area "Wissameking", meaning "catfish place", as early as 1757. From WIKI

Mohawks
See page 531.

Strings of Wampum
Wampum are traditional, sacred shell beads of Eastern Woodlands tribes. They include the white shell beads fashioned from the North Atlantic channeled whelk shell and the white and purple beads, made from the quahog, or Western North Atlantic hard-shelled clam. Woven belts of wampum have commemorated treaties or historical events. From WIKI

Senecas
See page 571.

Cherokees
The Cherokee are a Native American people historically settled in the Southeastern United States (principally Georgia, the Carolinas and Eastern Tennessee). Linguistically, they are connected to speakers of the Iroquoian language family. In the 19th century, their oral tradition told of their migrating south from the Great Lakes region. From/See WIKI

Dunkard Creek
Dunkard Creek is a stream that flows through Greene County, Pennsylvania and Monongalia County, West Virginia near the towns of Mount Morris, Pennsylvania, and Blacksville, West Virginia. It flows into the Monongahela River near Dunkard, Pennsylvania, approximately three miles north of the Pennsylvania-West Virginia border. Mason-Dixon Historical Park is located on the banks of Dunkard Creek in an area where the creek crosses the border three times in less than one mile. The park grounds include Brown's Hill, the westernmost site from which Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon made astronomical observations during the original survey of the Pennsylvania-Maryland border in 1767. The creek is named for members of the Dunkard sect, a pacifist, nonconformist group of Christians who settled in the region during the 1700s. From WIKI

Prisqueetom, Prince of the Delawares
Brother of a Delaware Chief, when Mason & Dixon met Prisqueetom, he was 86 years of age. In his journal Mason wrote of him, "[Prisqueetom] had a great mind to go and see the great King over the Waters; and make a perpetual Peace with him; but was afraid he should not be sent back to his own Country."

Page 674

Fatum in Denario vertit
Latin: Fate turns upon a penny

'Doing a Chapman'
Reference to Chapman Abraham, Detroit's first Jewish resident. See LINK

captur'd near Fort Detroit
The Siege of Fort Detroit was an ultimately unsuccessful attempt by North American Indians to capture Fort Detroit during Pontiac's Rebellion. The siege was led primarily by Pontiac, an Ottawa war leader. From WIKI

Page 675

Catawbas
The Catawba (also known as Issa or Esaw, but most commonly Iswa) are a federally recognized nation of Native Americans, known as the Catawba Indian Nation. They live in the Southeast United States, along the border between North and South Carolina. The Catawba were once considered one of the most powerful eastern Siouan tribes. The Catawba began settling in this region of North America in the mid 17th century. It is a matter of some debate as to where the Catawba lived prior to European settlement, but the central and southeastern Great Lakes region is a generally accepted and much cited location. From WIKI

casus belli
Casus belli is a Latin expression meaning the justification for acts of war. Casus means "incident", "rupture" or indeed "case", while belli means "of war". It is usually distinguished from casus foederis, with casus belli being used to refer to offenses or threats directly against a nation, and casus foederis to refer to offenses or threats to another, allied, nation with which the justifying nation is engaged in a mutual defense treaty, such as NATO. From WIKI

Sir William Johnson
See page 532.

Page 676

Siskin
A bird related to the finch

Page 677

ghosts of '55
See page 330.

Annotations Index

One:
Latitudes and Departures

1: 5-11, 2: 12-13, 3: 14-29, 4: 30-41, 5: 42-46, 6: 47-57, 7: 58-76, 8: 77-86, 9: 87-93, 10: 94-104, 11: 105-115, 12: 116-124, 13: 125-145, 14: 146-157, 15: 158-166, 16: 167-174, 17: 175-182, 18: 183-189, 19: 190-198, 20: 199-206, 21: 207-214, 22: 215-227, 23: 228-237, 24: 238-245, 25: 245-253


Two:
America

26: 257-265, 27: 266-274, 28: 275-288, 29: 289-295, 30: 296-301, 31: 302-314, 32: 315-326, 33: 327-340, 34: 341-348, 35: 349-361, 36: 362-370, 37: 371-381, 38: 382-390, 39: 391-398, 40: 399-409, 41: 410-421, 42: 422-435, 43: 436-439, 44: 440-447, 45: 448-451, 46: 452-459, 47: 460-465, 48: 466-475, 49: 476-483, 50: 484-490, 51: 491-498, 52: 499-510, 53: 511-524, 54: 525-541, 55: 542-553, 56: 554-561, 57: 562-569, 58: 570-574, 59: 575-584, 60: 585-596, 61: 597-607, 62: 608-617, 63: 618-622, 64: 623-628, 65: 629-632, 66: 633-645, 67: 646-657, 68: 658-664, 69: 665-677, 70: 678-686, 71: 687-693, 72: 694-705, 73: 706-713

Three:
Last Transit

74: 717-732, 75: 733-743, 76: 744-748, 77: 749-757, 78: 758-773

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