Saturday Snippetts …21st August 2022…Today’s one word prompt is “Circus”

Welcome to Saturday Snippets this is one of my favourite posts of the week I learn much from my research and your comments so please keep them coming…my muse is a funny thing sometimes a word is given to me in advance and other times my muse leaves it until the day before…my muse also gives me some strange ones where I have to think and have a delve in my archives(thoughts)…lol…my first thought here took me back to my childhood where a visit to the circus was an annual treat when “The Circus Come to Town”…back then it was exciting and no one gave any thought (that) I could tell for the animals we just saw the glitter and sawdust and oohed and ahhed at the tightrope walkers and laughed so much at the clowns…I can assure you no animals were harmed at in the writing of this post and of course, my views are now those of many about animals and indeed a modern circus-like Cirque du Soleil without animals thrill audiences around the world…Cirque du Soleil was created as part of the 1984 celebrations to mark the 450th anniversary of Jacques Cartier’s discovery of Canada.

This video however is synonymous with the thrills of a childhood circus…I hope you enjoy this blast from the past!

The word Circus dates from Roman times when arenas such as the Circus Maximus staged chariot races, gladiatorial contests and mock battles.

The modern circus was invented in London by trick horse rider Philip Astley, who opened his Amphitheatre of Equestrian Arts in London, in 1768.

Astley never called his show a circus. The word was coined by writer and actor Charles Dibdin who founded the competing Royal Circus with Astley’s equestrian rival Charles Hughes.

A standard circus ring remains 42 feet in diameter, the size originally established by Astley…

The jugglers managing to keep those balls or hoops in the air always enthralled me…Said to be the greatest juggler of all time is Enrico Rastelli (1896 – 1931) as he was able to juggle ten balls at once…

How many of us had dreams of joining the circus and riding into the sunset…come on fess up…but what did the circus folk think of the ones who did join the circus…they called an outsider a ‘josser’ …yes the spelling is correct, not sure what the circus folks spelling or pronunciation would be though…mmm…

The clowns,,,, The word clown is believed to come from the Icelandic word klunni, meaning a clumsy person…The mischievous clown in a double act is called the ‘auguste’ and the straight man is the ‘whiteface.’.., I loved clowns as a child not so now we have Stephen Kings” Pennywise the Dancing Clown”, and the like they scare me…

The greatest clown of all for me is the earliest of the true circus clowns was Joseph Grimaldi, who first appeared in England in 1805. Grimaldi’s clown, affectionately called “Joey,” specialized in the classic physical tricks, tumbling, pratfalls, and slapstick beatings…he is the clown of my childhood..clumsy and funny…

Music wise when I think of clowns I think of this song…Frank Sinatra sang it, Dame Judi Dench and Judy Collins, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Streisand but I think my favourite is this one…A hard choice…

On a positive note the circus may be back in town soon…but without the animals …The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, which shut down in 2017 after a storied 146-year run of three-ring entertainment around the world, could be making a comeback. a new version of the circus without animals is expected to make its debut in 2023…

Thank you for joining me today for Saturday Snippets I hope you enjoyed all the fun of the circus…xx

29 thoughts on “Saturday Snippetts …21st August 2022…Today’s one word prompt is “Circus”

  1. Jennie

    There was so much I did not know, Carol. Thank you! Did you know that the first to cross the Brooklyn Bridge were the Barnum and Bailey elephants- to prove to the public that the bridge was safe?

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  2. Smorgasbord - Variety is the Spice of Life.

    We used to go to the circus every summer on Southsea Common and one year they asked for volunteers to be put in the harness and on to the back of the horse going around the ring… you can guess who put their hand up.. what an experience but I have to say… I don’t have a clown phobia, but I don’t like them… it is the eyes lol.. and love that version by Shirley.♥

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  3. Pingback: CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 14th -20th August 2022-Monday Musings, Health, Morbid Obesity,Energy Crisis… How to reduce energy useage in your kitchen … and Saturday Snippets where “Circus” is my one word prompt.… | Retired? No one told me!

  4. Jim Borden

    great post, Carol! I am a big fan of the circus, and I was happy to read about Ringling coming back in 2023.

    Shirley Bassey has a powerful voice, and what a wonderful song to show it off.

    And like Pete, I am also a juggler, and I hope to spend a lot more time practicing it once I retire.

    Thanks for sharing the Rastelli video – he was amazing. I also hope to see Cirque some day, and they had one of the world’s best jugglers in Anthony Gatto.

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    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      Wow.. 2 jugglers how cool is that you two would make a great double act… I hope you get to see Cirque it is an amazing show I have only seen it on film not in real time but would love to see it live.
      I also am a big fan of Shirley a perfect song for her voice.. Love it!

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  5. Pingback: Saturday Snippetts …21st August 2022…Today’s one word prompt is “Circus” – MobsterTiger

  6. Clive

    The annual visit to the circus was a highlight of my childhood too, though I cringe now at the thought of what those poor animals must have gone through. Not an easy one for music choices, is it! 😊 x

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  7. robbiesinspiration

    hi Carol, I’ve never been to a traditional circus. I have seen some amazing shows with just acrobats. My next children’s book will feature a citcus but all the walking, talking animals have their own independent acts.

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  8. beetleypete

    I used to be taken to see Billy Smart’s Circus in the Big Top on Blackheath, South London. My favourites were the trapeze act and the clowns in a car that used to fall to pieces. But the most impressive circus I ever saw was The Moscow State Circus, in its home city of Moscow. I was 25 at the time, but still enjoyed it. Like everyone else, I welcome the absence of the poor badly-treated animals now.
    Best wishes, Pete. x

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  9. Darlene

    I was always concerned for the animals. Love Cirque du Soleir and have seen it a few times in Vancouver. Send in the Clowns is such a great song, my favourite byJudy Collins. (A girl raised in southern Alberta not far from where I was raised) Shirley Bassey does a fab job of it too.

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  10. petespringerauthor

    As a juggler of very modest talents, I thought the video on Rastelli was interesting. I’m always curious about how someone’s interest in any activity comes to pass.

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