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  • Mihaela Repina

Christmas Verses and Sketches from 1914

Manuscript poem with image of a baby sitting in top left hand with clouds which seem to be coming from a drawn lit candle to left of poem. At top right of page is title Christmas Day ornately written with a star above. Each line of poem begins with letter from word Christmas.
Christmas Day Poem

The 1914 Christmas edition of the Blandyke Papers in our Jesuits in Britain Archives are full of inspiring images and reflections for the Christmas season.

Origin of the Blandyke Papers

The first issue of the Blandyke Papers was published on 8th January 1889 at St Mary’s Hall, Stonyhurst, Lancashire. The Hall was built as a Jesuit seminary in 1828 and was the centre for philosophy studies. The idea for the Papers was conceived in 1888 by two seminarians, Arthur Allchin (who became a priest in the Nottingham diocese) and Thomas Morton (who became Monsignor and Vicar-General of the diocese of Winnipeg). Their aim was to provide an outlet for future priests to develop their literary skills and creativity. Each issue is wholly manuscript, in the handwriting of the several authors. In cases where the students’ had poor handwriting, articles were written out by a calligraphist. It was intended for private circulation only, and displayed in the Philosophers’ common room. The Blandyke Papers contain essays on Literature, History, Liturgy, Philosophy, Science and Art but Politics was excluded. They include beautiful drawings, poems and photographs...

Origin of the name Blandyke

A blandyke or blandike: the Stonyhurst name for a Jesuit Scholastic’s holiday. Blandyke is an Anglicization of Blendecques, a village on the river Aa in Flanders, an hour’s walk from St Omers. In 1626, the English Jesuits and St Omers purchased a property there to provide a place where the students could spend their monthly holidays. The custom of calling such monthly holidays ‘blandykes’ was kept even after the school was transferred to Stonyhurst.

Wishing you a very Happy Christmas & New Year!

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