Talking about the weather

Neil's Commonplace Book

This morning in West Wollongong:


Looks pretty, eh! But we should perhaps take heed. “Red sky on the morning, shepherd’s warning./Red sky at night, shepherd’s delight.” That is the version my father taught me. But see Wikipedia on it: quite fascinating.

A similar adage appears in a poem by William Shakespeare. He said something similar in his Venus and Adonis (1593):

“Like a red morn that ever yet betokened,
Wreck to the seaman, tempest to the field,
Sorrow to the shepherds, woe unto the birds,
Gusts and foul flaws to herdmen and to herds.”

The perils are foreshadowed using the archaic word “betokened”; some versions use the archaic term “Wrack” (for the word “Wreck”).

In the Bible at Matthew 16:2-3, Jesus is quoted as saying, “When in evening, ye say, it will be fair weather: For the sky is red. And in the morning, it will be foul weather…

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