Tradition rings in the 365th Commencement

first_imgA joyous peal of bells will ring throughout Cambridge on Commencement Day, May 26.In celebration of the city of Cambridge and of the country’s oldest university — and of our earlier history when bells of varying tones summoned us from sleep to prayer, work, or study — this ancient yet new sound will fill Harvard Square and the surrounding area with music when a number of neighboring churches and institutions ring their bells at the conclusion of Harvard’s 365th Commencement Exercises, for the 28th consecutive year.The bells will begin to ring at 11:30 a.m., just after the sheriff of Middlesex County declares the Commencement Exercises adjourned. They will ring for approximately 15 minutes.The deep-toned bell in the Memorial Church tower, for years the only bell to acknowledge the festival rites of Commencement, will be joined by the set of bells cast to replace the original 17-bell Russian zvon of Lowell House that was returned in 2008 to the Danilov Monastery near Moscow. Those bells will ring alongside those of Harvard Business School; the historic 13-bell “Harvard Chime” of Christ Church Cambridge; the Harvard Divinity School bell in Andover Hall; and the bells of the Church of the New Jerusalem, First Church Congregational, First Parish Unitarian Universalist, First Baptist Church, St. Paul Roman Catholic Church, St. Peter’s Roman Catholic Church, University Lutheran Church, Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church, and St. Anthony’s Church.Bells were already in use at Harvard in 1643 when “New England’s First Fruits,” published in London that year, set forth some College rules: “Every Schollar shall be present in his tutor’s chambers at the 7th houre in the morning, immediately after the sound of the bell … opening the Scripture and prayer.”Three of the 15 bells known to have been in use in Massachusetts before 1680 were hung within the precincts of the present College Yard, including the original College bell and the bell of the First Parish Church.Of the churches participating in the joyful ringing today, one, First Parish, has links with Harvard that date from its foundation. The College had use of the church’s bell, Harvard’s first Commencement was held in the church’s meetinghouse, and one of the chief reasons for selecting Cambridge as the site of the College was the proximity of this church and its minister, the Rev. Thomas Shepard, a clergyman of “marked ability and piety.”Another church ringing its bells in celebration is Christ Church Cambridge. The oldest church in the area, it houses the Harvard Chime, the name given to the chime of bells cast for the church in anticipation of its 1861 centennial. Two fellow alumni and Richard Henry Dana Jr., author of “Two Years Before the Mast,” arranged for the chime’s creation. The 13 bells were first rung on Easter Sunday, 1860: Each bell of the Harvard Chime bears in Latin a portion of the “Gloria in Excelsis.”Referring in 1893 to the Harvard Chime, Samuel Batchelder wrote, “From the outset the bells were considered as a common object of interest and enjoyment for the whole city, and their intimate connection with the University made it an expressed part of their purpose that they should be rung, not alone on church days but also on all festivals and special occasions of the college, a custom which has continued to the present time.”The old Russian bells of Lowell House, in place for 66 years, rang on an eastern scale; the newly cast bells give out a charming sound, as do the bells of the Cambridge churches joining in concert today. A thoughtful student of bells wrote in 1939, “… church bells, whether they sound in a tinkling fashion the end of the first watch in the dead of night, announce the matins a few hours later, or intone the vespers or angelus, have a peculiar fascination. Chimes affect the heartstrings …”last_img read more

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WBB : Syracuse still searching for all-around offensive performance

first_img Comments Published on January 6, 2012 at 12:00 pm Contact Chris: [email protected] | @chris_iseman Just when Syracuse seemed to have corrected one of its biggest problems, another crept up. While the Orange has found its shooting stroke in recent games, it still hasn’t gotten an all-around quality offensive performance as a team.Sure, the Orange has been knocking down shots with greater ease. But instead of having several guards scoring, it’s falling on only one or two to carry the load.‘We’ve got to be ready to shoot,’ junior guard Carmen Tyson-Thomas said. ‘It’s more about us as shooters not being ready to shoot and being ready to knock down shots and make plays.’Syracuse (11-5, 0-2 Big East) will get its next opportunity to have an all-around solid offensive performance when it hits the road to play Pittsburgh (8-7, 0-2) on Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Petersen Events Center. The Orange won its final three games of its nonconference schedule before falling to Rutgers, shooting 45.5 percent from the field during that stretch. The issue, though, was that Tyson-Thomas was the only guard who put together quality performances, scoring 15 points against both Niagara and Colgate. SU is still searching for all of its guards to step up and help pack a scoring punch to help the Orange win its first Big East game.So far, that hasn’t happened.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textInstead, Syracuse’s scoring has come mainly from its frontcourt, with senior forward Iasia Hemingway averaging 15.6 points and junior center Kayla Alexander averaging 15.4 points per game. Tyson-Thomas enters Saturday matchup with the Panthers scoring about 12 points per game, and those three players make up the bulk of SU’s offense. When they’re off the court, the scoring consistency leaves with them as the Orange’s offensive depth remains shallow.‘I don’t think there’s anything specific, we just have to be more focused and more ready to make shots.’ Tyson-Thomas said. ‘We have to step up.’Tyson-Thomas is the only guard that really has.Elashier Hall – who started the season on a scoring tear that included a 20-point performance against Long Beach State in the opener – is averaging 9.7 points. La’Shay Taft is adding a meager 4.9 points per game. And Syracuse’s point guards, Shanee Williams and Rachel Coffey, have combined for a slim total of 6.2 points per game.SU hoped to straighten out its scoring woes when it resumed its conference schedule against Rutgers on Tuesday. Instead, it was more of the same against the Scarlet Knights.Fourteen from Hemingway, 12 from Tyson-Thomas and nine from Alexander. In terms of scoring, it was the usual suspects.Most of all, though, SU is going to need all of its players to improve their outside shooting abilities. For many of Syracuse’s nonconference games, the Orange’s guards were anemic from the perimeter, relying on the inside presence of Hemingway and Alexander to make up the scoring.With such cold shooting performances, opposing defenders paid less and less attention to the guards and collapsed on SU’s scorers in the paint. That made it increasingly difficult for Alexander to score at will.The few times when the guards were being defended consistently, the junior center had much more room to work.‘It makes it a lot easier, because then I have more space to work with and to attack the basket,’ Alexander said. ‘When our guards are being pressured, it makes it a little easier in the paint.’The Orange hasn’t made it any secret that it relies on Alexander in the low post to provide the bulk of its points. When SU struggles from the outside, it goes inside consistently.Against Pittsburgh, Syracuse could have the perfect opportunity to right its ongoing struggles.Ranked dead last in the Big East in scoring defense, the Panthers are allowing an average of 66.8 points per game to opponents. And that’s mainly against the lowly teams Pittsburgh faced during its nonconference slate.Syracuse is hoping to expose that defense and get its offense on track any way it can.‘We just played the way we play,’ head coach Quentin Hillsman said. ‘If you close out, we’re going to attack you off the bounce. If we get the ball inside, that’s what we’re going to [email protected]center_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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