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The Zoroastrian religion of ancient Persia (about 600 BC). It recog- nized two dominant deities in the universe. The more powerful of the two was Ahura Mazda, the Spirit of Good. Ahriman was the Spirit of Evil. Hu- mans, the Persians believed, were free to follow either and to choose the path of virtue or sin. Some scholars believe that Ahriman was the prototype of Satan, who appears later in the Hebrew, Christian and Islamic tradi- tions.
Saint Ambrose was Bishop of Milan, in the fourth century. He is re- membered in Christian history as a great scholar and for his simple life- style and piety. He died in 397 AD.
This was a script or font, that was begun around 700 AD and was in full use in Europe between 800 and 1200. It is characterized by clear, rounded letters, spaces between words, and use of some punctuation. It was intended as a clear, uniform Latin script that all literate people could read.
In the early Christian Church, even from late-Roman times, there was a strong tradition of chanting prayers. By Gabriel’s day, such chanting was done only in monasteries, and the style of chant was known as Gregorian Chant. You can hear an example of it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-hrBhA4XkM
If you wish to listen to what Gabriel is hearing, find Carmina Burana, by Carl Orff.
Usually a covered or partly-covered area of a monastery’s inner pre- cincts, where monks can pray outdoors, usually while walking around a rectangular pathway.
Always forty days before Easter Sunday in the Christian spiritual calendar, it signals the beginning of the Season of Lent — a period of reflection and self-denial. Christians mark the day by putting ashes on their foreheads as a sign of sorrow for sin and a symbol that we all must die one day.
The French Military Intelligence Agency in the era before the First World War. It mainly gathered foreign intelligence about the mil- itary threat to France represented by Germany and its allies.
(British) A department of Scotland Yard that dealt with mat- ters of espionage.
A lizard-like, cat-faced alpine folk creature. It was said to be ven- omous, and that its putrid breath could overcome humans with headaches and dizziness. Some believe the creatures — reportedly more than seven feet long — to be phantoms of a monster that had inhabited the Alps in earlier times. The creatures are said to invariably announce their presence by emitting a high-pitched hiss.
In pre-Christian Germany, the custom was to settle disputes by Ordeals or Trials, in which the person who prevailed as adjudged to be in the right. As the custom continued into Christian times, the person who prevailed was considered to be declared in the right by God. Trial by Com- bat was the usual form of Ordeal, but Emperor Charlemagne considered it unseemly for churchmen to settle disputes by combat, so he invented Trial by Cross. The trial represented, in part, the agonies that Jesus must have felt on the cross.
An Alliance between England, France, and Russia, negotiated in 1907, and generally intended to oppose German ambitions in Europe.