It’s 6 Days until SKIN OF THE WOLF…

 

Arctic Indian Ceremonial Mask, Alaska, Circa 1900
Arctic Indian Ceremonial Mask, Alaska, Circa 1900

 

 

 

A Native American ceremonial mask up for auction at Sotheby’s lies at the heart of Skin of the Wolf. We are celebrating the use of masks throughout the world and across time by featuring a new mask daily as we count down to publication day on July 31, 2014. To pre-order and for more information please use the links on your left.

 

The original source for today’s mask can be found here.

Did you know that John Cabot’s actual name was Giovanni Caboto (and that he was Italian)?

A scholarly article published in 2012 supports the claim that Italian merchants actually financed some of the first British expeditions to America, including those by John Cabot (Giovanni Caboto).  You can read about the new evidence here.  John Cabot “discovered” what we now know as Newfoundland and thereby claimed Canada for England.  As we hope interestingly, John Cabot’s voyage to North American plays an important part in the life of one of the characters in SKIN OF THE WOLF.

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John Cabot (Giovanni Caboto)

You can also learn more about John Cabot here.

Also, perhaps interestingly, one half of Sam Cabot (namely Carlos Dews) is chairperson of the Department of English Language and Literature at John Cabot University in Rome, Italy.

Sherlock Holmes, the Paranormal, and The Diogenes Club

Some of you know the SJ half of Sam Cabot was invested in the Baker Street Irregulars this past January.  It was an honor unexpected and undeserved.  SJ doesn’t have nearly the required knowledge to be a Sherlockian.  But there you go.

 

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Photo: Gruber Photographers

SJ was at the dinner in this photo but you’ll never find her.

Sherlock Holmes, of course, would have no truck with ideas of the paranormal.  Something supernatural seemed to be going on in THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES — but no.  In Holmes’s world, everything had a rational explanation.

Not so in his creator’s, though.  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a big believer in spiritualism — photographs of fairies, seances, that sort of romantic Victoriana.  If you click the link you’ll find the official biography supplied by his estate.  Interestingly, though it defends his spiritualism, it doesn’t mention it at all until page fourteen.  Of fifteen.

Down through the years there have been other takes, of course.  Some folks believe Holmes himself was a vampire.  The Noantri of Sam Cabot’s books like this idea, though they point out that Holmes was a fictional creation…

Another great approach is Kim Newman’s in his Diogenes Club series.  The Diogenes Club, you will no doubt remember, was founded by Sherlock’s brother Mycroft.  Newman’s thesis is, it exists to protect the British Empire from… forces.  Check it out.

 

 

 

It’s 7 Days until SKIN OF THE WOLF…

 

Gold Mask of Agamemnon discovered in 1876 by Heinrich Schliemann during his excavations at Mycenae in Greece, 1550–1500 BC
Gold Mask of Agamemnon discovered in 1876 by Heinrich Schliemann during his excavations at Mycenae in Greece, 1550–1500 BC

 

 

A Native American ceremonial mask up for auction at Sotheby’s lies at the heart of Skin of the Wolf. We are celebrating the use of masks throughout the world and across time by featuring a new mask daily as we count down to publication day on July 31, 2014. To pre-order and for more information please use the links on your left.

 

The original source for today’s mask can be found here.

Up the River

A couple of large mansions (what, as opposed to small mansions?) play roles in SKIN OF THE WOLF.  One is in Riverdale; the other house and its extensive grounds are up the Hudson River from NYC near the town of Esopus.  If you were to ask whether the house and grounds herein were the model for that place we would of course deny it.  However, for some reason we thought you’d find this estate interesting.

Although now the Raymond A. Rich Institute for Leadership Development of Marist College, the estate once belonged to Colonel Oliver Hazard Payne, one of the richest men in the world back in his day. In 1905 he bought the place from John Jacob Astor and hired Carrère and Hastings, the architects responsible for the New York Public Library, the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, and the Frick Museum.  Payne had the house built like an Italian palazzo but he never liked it and he never lived there, rarely even spending summers in Esopus.  In those days rich folks did half of what they did only to keep up with one another. Good thing times have changed, right?

 

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If you like these posts, we’d like it if you’d “Like” Sam Cabot’s Facebook page.  Thanks!

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Saint Kateri Tekakwitha : The First Native American Saint, Part V

“Masochism and Sainthood: Kateri Tekakwitha and Junípero Serra

How is that for an interesting title of an academic paper? I’m sure Father Thomas Kelly in SKIN OF THE WOLF would certainly have read it when he was preparing his biography of Saint Kateri Tekakwitha.  Read the article by Daniel Fogel here.

The paper was “presented at the symposium on ‘The Spanish Missions and California Indians,’ held at D-Q University near Davis, California, March 2, 1990. Kateri Tekakwitha was canonized by pope Benedict 16 (formerly cardinal Joseph Ratzinger) on October 21, 2012, elevating her to sainthood.”

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It’s 8 Days until SKIN OF THE WOLF…

Gelede Mask, Yoruba, late 19th Century
Gelede Mask, Yoruba, late 19th Century

 

 

 

A Native American ceremonial mask up for auction at Sotheby’s lies at the heart of Skin of the Wolf. We are celebrating the use of masks throughout the world and across time by featuring a new mask daily as we count down to publication day on July 31, 2014. To pre-order and for more information please use the links on your left.

 

The original source for today’s mask can be found here.

Akwesasne

Michael Bonnard and his brother Edward, main characters in SKIN OF THE WOLF, are Abenakis born and raised at Akwesasne.  Akwesase is a Mohawk reservation, quite large, and spread across the US-Canada border.  Michael and Edward have a Mohawk father, but their mother was Abenaki, and Native American affiliation goes through the maternal line.

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In the sixties and seventies Akwesasne produced a number of people and publications active in various movements for Native American rights.  In 1979 the Akwesasne Freedom School was established, where the entire curriculum is in the Mohawk language.  This link, from the Freedom School page, will get you to the text of the Thanksgiving Prayer, not a prayer for white people’s Thanksgiving Day but a prayer of giving thanks that opens meetings and deliberations in the Mohawk nation.

 

If you like these posts, we’d like it if you’d “Like” Sam Cabot’s Facebook page.  Thanks!

https://www.facebook.com/SamCabotWriter?ref_type=bookmark.

 

It’s 9 Days until SKIN OF THE WOLF…

 

Buffalo Mask by Allen Long, Eastern Band of Cherokee, Jackson County, North Carolina, Circa 1965
Buffalo Mask by Allen Long, Eastern Band of Cherokee, Jackson County, North Carolina, Circa 1965

 

A Native American ceremonial mask up for auction at Sotheby’s lies at the heart of Skin of the Wolf. We are celebrating the use of masks throughout the world and across time by featuring a new mask daily as we count down to publication day on July 31, 2014. To pre-order and for more information please use the links on your left.

 

The original source for today’s mask can be found here.

New York City

Sam Cabot’s BLOOD OF THE LAMB was set in Rome but his latest, SKIN OF THE WOLF, is set in New York City.  The History Channel maintains a very interesting page about the Big Apple.  Find it here.

 

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