About Quadrivia

The Tyburn Tree stood at an ancient three-way road junction outside London where, for nearly six centuries, criminals were executed. The triangular design allowed for mass hangings. In 1649, 24 people were executed simultaneously.

Before pub quiz nights and school fundraisers, before Parker Brothers boardgames, even before Shakespeare demoted it to ‘trifling’ and ‘insignificant’, trivia had a more noble life. The trivia were the three lower liberal arts taught in medieval universities – grammar, rhetoric and logic. These formed the three roads to eloquence.

Even further back, Trivia was one of the immortals, the Roman goddess of crossroads, the meeting place of humans by day and darker creatures by night. But immortality proved fleeting and by 1965 she had been reduced so far that two Columbia University students could misappropriate her name for a popular culture-themed quiz contest.

Quadrivia, the higher liberal arts of music, astronomy, geometry and arithmetic, or the four roads to knowledge, has been left largely untouched. So I’m taking it for the title of this blog.

Quadrivia is a collection of strange, esoteric and unexplained stories, discoveries, facts and observations. Some might qualify as trivia but, I hope, none are trivial.

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2 Responses to About Quadrivia

  1. circa71 says:

    Hello,

    I wanted to let you know that I very much like your blog and was wondering if you would like to exchange links on our blogs. I’d very much like to be listed on your blog roll and would happily reciprocate by listing Quadrivia on my site http://www.circa71.wordpress.com

    All the best
    Circa71

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