This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Saturday Rave: The rain it raineth on the just by Charles Bowen.

The Met Office (that's the organisation whose job it is to predict Britain's weather) has just started naming our noisier storms. We've already breezed through Abigail, Barney and Clodagh, and now Desmond has rushed in bringing record amounts of rain and half-drowned The Lake District.

Most British storms come from the West, so does this mean that the Welsh and the men of Cornwall and Cumbria deserve a regular soaking? Are the Irish a bad lot? Are the people of Iona, despite all appearances, grasping and wicked?

Well, no, of course not, because, as it says in the Bible (Matthew 5 45, if you're interested) He maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

As if that isn't difficult enough to accept, of course then humans come along and make things even worse:

The rain it raineth on the just
And also on the unjust fella;
But chiefly on the just, because
The unjust hath the just's umbrella.

That verse has been attributed to various people, but it was actually the happy thought of an English judge, Charles Bowen. Here he is:

Charles Bowen by Leslie Ward 1892.

Charles Bowen was a respected and successful judge, and a much-loved man, but his great gift to us nowadays is that little and oddly satisfying verse.

And it's not at all a bad thing to be remembered for, either.

Word To Use Today: umbrella. This word comes from the Italian ombrella, which is the diminutive of ombra, shade.

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