The tomato puree spillage on the A14 earlier this week led to an influx of passata-related jokesPaulo Mandica/Unsplash & Rose and Trev Clough/Geograph

Pembroke porters swoop to the aid of peregrine falcon chicks

Pembroke College porters helped to rescue a group of fledgling peregrine falcon chicks over the course of four eventful days.

A fledgling was found and taken in by porters on Saturday (29/05) before being transferred to the Raptor Foundation near St Ives.

A second fledgling was found on Tuesday (01/06) at around 11.30am after failing to take flight. The bird was photographed on Downing Street before being captured and taken to the porters at Pembroke who successfully reunited the two fledglings.

Peregrine falcons first moved into the city in 2014 and this is their seventh breeding season. Pembroke College has dealt with the birds before, having accommodated three of last year’s brood. A porter stated: “It’s just kind of standard for us”, adding “we have boxes and blankets all ready and raring to go.”

Muntjac deer rescued from the Cam

Members of the public banded together early yesterday morning (02/06) and succeeded in freeing a Muntjac deer stuck in the River Cam.

The rescue took place at around 5.30am and was assisted by Omar Terywall who, as cox, was taking part in rowing practice at the time.

Omar said that the boat had just headed past the Chisholm Rail bridge when he spotted the animal, who some initially mistook for “a giant rat”.

While being rescued the deer initially panicked and fell back into the river but was quickly “plucked out” and able to go on its way.

New Cambridge Greek Lexicon “spares no blushes”

The first new English dictionary of ancient Greek in almost 200 years was published this week by Cambridge University Press.

To date, the standard lexicon in British schools and universities was Robert Scott’s Intermediate Greek-English Lexicon, published in 1889 but itself an abridged version of the 1843 A Greek-English Lexicon

The new volume’s editors have, in the words of Professor James Diggle of the Faculty of Classics, endeavoured to “spare no blushes” in their glosses of words that “brought a blush to Victorian cheeks”. 

The verb χέζω (chezo), translated in the Victorian volumes as “ease oneself, do one’s need”, is accordingly given as “to defecate” and “to sh*t” in the new dictionary, while the translation of βινέω (bineo) has been updated from “inire, coire, of illicit intercourse” to “f***”.

The dictionary has been 23 years in the making, during which time the editorial team undertook the “Herculean task” of rereading most examples of ancient Greek literature, from Homer to the early second century AD. The final work runs to two volumes and provides definitions of around 37,000 Greek words.

A puree nightmare on the A14

The A14 near Godmanchester, Cambridgeshire, turned bright red on Tuesday evening (01/06) as a crash between two lorries resulted in one emptying its cargo of tomato puree and olive oil out onto the road.  

A 23-mile long section of the westbound carriageway, which runs from Cambridge to Brampton had to be closed until 2pm on Wednesday while “emergency resurfacing work” was performed.

One of the drivers was injured in the crash, though not seriously, and has since been discharged from hospital.

Predictably, the incident prompted an outpour of puns, one person tweeting: “I went pasta that. Took a while for the traffic to ketchup”, while another wrote: “And I imagine when it does reopen cars will have to passata slow speed?”