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A glance back, and onward!

Looking back at our archived posts we see how incredibly rich the subject of Brits at their best is. Posts you might have missed –

Rock 'n roll icons. Or, if you prefer, Bryn Terfel, "a voice in a billion".

Incredible British women here and here and here

Shakespeare's heroines here

The amazing valour of William Tyndale

The luminous insight of Robert Grosseteste

Lord Carey challenged violent Islamists; and we described the danger of their threat here .

Fair Dinkum talked about what Australia plans to teach immigrants.

Since ideas have been the making and unmaking of nations, we explored some crucial to Britain in dogs and multiculturalism and flying a jet plane.

Did those feet suggests there is evidence that Jesus came to England as a young boy.

In a happy ending Brits awakened three flowering seeds 300 years after they were first collected.

In pursuit of his theory, Darwin floated dead birds in seawater.

The selfless gallantry of a soldier in Afghanistan filled us with awe.

Corfu honoured the Durrells.

Brits won the Ryder Cup.

We described how Britain was hospitable to a foreign genius. (The Holbein Exhibition at the Tate comes down January 8.)

We found that a heroic point of view conflicts with a politically correct point of view .

We looked at how Brits are defeating the European Union's threat to freedom.

We recalled that in 1776 in Manhattan, the American lines held in early fighting, but gradually began to fall back, while their cousins from Britain advanced, irritating the heck out of them by playing the “Call to Ground”, a signal during foxhunts that the quarry had been trapped in its hole. The call was well known to the Virginians, and must have set Washington's teeth on edge. Reinforcements gave impetus to the hunters who pushed north as far as present-day 125th Street, where farms spread out around the small village of Harlem.

Washington ordered the Connecticut Rangers under Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Knowlton and the Virginians under Major Andrew Leitch to advance. Fighting courageously they forced the King's Army to retreat. When the battle ended, Knowlton and Leitch and at least 100 others were dead. The reprieve was temporary.

Washington's subsequent flight across the Hudson River and New Jersey with his men, who had been on the road and fighting for almost a year, but who refused to surrender though hungry and shoeless, is a measure of their fierce and tender love of liberty. They learned this love from the best of the Brits, and when Americans drafted their Constitution and Bill of Rights, they based it on the British Constitution, perhaps the Brits' greatest gift to the world.

We look forward to exploring much more in 2007, and hope you will be with us. Happy new year!

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