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H is for Hungerford Bridge #AtoZChallenge — 2 Comments

  1. I think we walked that bridge on the way to the London Eye while I was a parent volunteer accompanying a school trip a good few years ago now. Lovely to see it again. I hadn’t realised that some areas of our capital city were named by insistence of the Pope. I guess that’s what you mean. Perhaps it’s one of the ways ‘cardinal sins’ is one of very few phrases in majority English/British language mentioning the word ‘cardinal’. Unless of course you mean a primordial sense of direction, ie. a natural sense of direction. Hopefully outlouding my thinking isn’t offensive to any others’ religious faith. It was a very interesting moment of my reading this post and attempting to decipher meaning. I’m very happy to caught up with reading your A to Z posts Joy.

    • The cardinal directions are the four points of the compass — north, east, south, and west.

      Why are they called that? I had to look that up in the Oxford English Dictionary. It turns out it comes directly from Latin. Used as an adjective, cardinal means “chief,” but of abstract things — “on which something else hinges or depends, fundamental; chief, principal.” The cardinal directions are the four chief directions — the two poles and the places of sunrise and sunset.

      The noun form seems to have derived from the adjective — so, important personages in the church became cardinals.

      In a later usage, because cardinals in the church wear bright red hats, we have a common bird in North America called a cardinal because of it’s bright red plumage and a lovely flower Lobelia cardinalis, commonly called cardinal flower, that is bright red.

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