The Dark Fantastic

Daily Mail (London), August 28, 2003 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

The Dark Fantastic

QUESTION Is there a link between the Goths, the Germanic people who sacked Rome circa AD 400, Gothic architecture, the Gothic novel and modern Goths who dress in black and listen to morose music?

THE names of some of the barbarian tribes who demolished the Roman empire have survived as insults, eg Hun and Vandal.

The use of 'Gothic' to describe the richly decorated mediaeval architecture style was similarly used as an insult, coined during the Renaissance by those seeking to revive classical Graeco-Roman architecture.

Gothic architecture referred to that which did not follow the selfimposed rules of the classical period, but produced instinctive and vital buildings, though its detractors would have called it fantastical and licentious.

In Victorian times, this style came back into fashion as 'Neo-Gothic' or 'Strawberry Hill Gothic'.

The term came to mean anything that was dark and flamboyant with a touch of the grotesque, and so was naturally applied to literature such as that of Bram Stoker and Edgar Allen Poe.

When Washington Irving, in 1809, made up an imaginary early history for New York, he called the city 'Gotham', and the buildings in the Batman films are splendid examples of a modern Gothic style.

Modern Goths who wear black are therefore being dark, flamboyant and a little grotesque.

Russell Vallance, London SE16.

QUESTION Is it possible to cover my car with stealth technology so as to be 'unseen' by automotive radar and cameras? How much would it cost?

THERE are two methods by which one could remain unseen by radar: deflection and absorption.

Deflection, the cheaper method, would involve having triangular chevrons embossed at a depth of 5mm on to every large exterior surface. This would make the radar's radio wave emissions deflect off-vector rather than back to the receiver- but it would also adversely affect the aerodynamic efficiency of the car.

The absorption method, much more expensive, would mean replacing all the metal on the car with a radar absorbent material akin to that used on the the U.S. B2 stealth bomber.

Vince Corani, Ealing, West London.

QUESTION In the unlikely event of the Russian monarchy being restored, who is in line to become Czar of Russia?

THIS is the basis of a long-running row that has split the Romanov clan, who have largely resettled in Europe and the U.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

The Dark Fantastic


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?