Saturday, July 09, 2005

on 7-7

"the nature of time in london is mysterious. it seems not to be running continuously in one direction, but to fall backwards and to retire; it does not resemble a stream or river as much as a lava flow from some unknown source of fire. sometimes it moves steadily forward, before springing or leaping out; sometimes is slows down and, on occasion, it drifts and begins to stop altogether. there are some places in london where you would be forgiven for thinking that time has come to an end.

in medieval documents ancient london customs were declared to be 'from time out of mind, about which contrary human memory does not exist'. . .beyond the time measured by human memory there exists, therefore, sacred time invoked by the sounds of [church] bells. the visions of our lady in the church of st. bartholomew or the miracles surrounding our lady of willesden, suggest that london is also the harbour of eternity. the bells provided a sonority where sacred and secular time met.

. . .the city became famous for its clocks, from that upon st. paul's to that of 'big ben' on st. stephen's tower at westminister, and renowned for its clock-makers. . .it is almost as if london manufactured time and then distributed it to the rest of the world.

. . .with the central position of greenwich, it controls the time of the world. . .time is the essential base of humanity and history -- thus london is the true eternal city, the source, indomitable."

-- p. ackroyd, london: the biography
(emphasis mine)

posted by fortune | 11:59 AM | top | link to this | email this: | links to this post | | 0 comments

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