The Catalan Sheepdog

Dogs: Catalan Shepherd (Catalan sheepdog or Stop dog)

Did you know that one of the oldest and most beloved breeds of dogs in Catalonia is the Catalan sheepdog (also known as Catalan stop dog or Catalan shepherd)? These furry and faithful companions have amazing skills as both a shepherd and a companion dog. In this article, we’ll explore their origin, history, unique characteristics, and skills and discover how many of these wonderful dogs exist today. So, let’s jump right in!

Where does the Catalan sheepdog come from?

The origin of the Catalan stop dog is uncertain, but it is believed that it descended from dogs brought by the Roman conquerors to the Iberian Peninsula around 150 BC. These dogs crossed with the local dogs of the region and gave rise to different European breeds. In the Catalan Pyrenees, the type of dog that gave rise to the Catalan stop dog would have predominated.

The history of the Catalan sheepdog

For centuries, the Catalan sheepdog enjoyed much popularity in Catalonia thanks to its great virtues as a shepherd dog and guardian. It was the typical dog of Catalan shepherds, who used it to drive and protect sheep, goats, and cows. It was also the dog of the farmhouses, where it watched and defended the territory and the family.

However, after World War II, the breed lost much of its admirers, reaching the brink of extinction. Fortunately, in the 1970s, a group of breeders began a program to recover the breed. Today, this is a rare dog in most of the world, but the population of Catalan shepherds is increasing slowly but gradually.

The characteristics of the Catalan sheepdog

This dog’s body is slightly longer than tall, in a length ratio: height on the cross of 9:8. It is also strong and muscular, but not heavy. The general impression it gives is that of strength and agility. The legs are strong and muscular, suitable for trotting long distances.

The head is broad and slightly convex, with the skull and nose of the same length. The eyes are small, oval-shaped, and dark brown. The ears are triangular and medium-sized and have fallen or semi-erect covers. The tail is medium length, rolled on the back or hanging like a hook.

The hair is long, smooth, hard and thick, with an inner layer of fine and soft hair. The color can be fawn, gray, black, brown, or orange, with or without white marks. The hair forms a beard, a moustache, and eyebrows that partially cover the eyes, giving it a characteristic look.

Its cross height is 45 to 55 cm in males and 40 to 50 cm in females. Its weight is about 20 kg in males and about 15 kg in females2.

The skills of the Catalan sheepdog

The Catalan sheepdogis a work dog. The Catalan shepherds selected it based on their ability to work, which has made it an active dog that likes to please its owners. As a shepherd’s dog, it has an excellent instinct for herd protection and great intelligence to solve problems. It also has a good sense of orientation and great physical resistance.

As a pet dog, it has a stable and faithful character. It is endearing with family members, caring for children while distrusting strangers. It is a dog that adapts well to different environments, whether in a farmhouse or a flat in a large city. To be happy, it needs daily exercise, attention, and estimation.

As a helpful dog, it has great skills for other tasks, such as canotherapy, rescue, or agility. It is a dog that learns fast and enjoys physical and mental activity.

How many examples of Catalan sheepdogs are there today?

There is no official data on the number of Catalan sheepdogs. Still, it is estimated that there are around 10,000 registered in the Spanish Origins Book (LOE) and about 5,000 registered in the Catalan Origins Book (LOC). In addition, many other specimens are not officially registered but are recognized as Catalan shepherds by their owners and breeders.

The Catalan shepherd is such an incredible breed that deserves more recognition for its beauty, history, and impressive skills. If you’re an active person or a nature lover searching for an excellent companion, a Catalan shepherd dog could be a perfect match. However, before adopting one, it’s crucial to educate yourself on their care, health, and training requirements. To get started, we suggest reaching out to the Club del Gos d’Atura Català (Catalan Shepherd dog Club), where you’ll find all the information about the breed and exciting club activities.

The meaning of life

What is the meaning of life? Does life have a purpose? Practical philosophy. Personal Growth.

If you have reached this post, you may have wondered one of the most fundamental questions: what is the meaning of life?
Unlike other living beings on planet Earth, it is a doubt humans are obsessed about: Does life have a meaning? Does my life have any purpose at all? Or even… does life actually need to have meaning?
Here, by life, we mean human life, all its organic, moral, philosophical, and ethical dimensions, to its fullest extent. Our purpose is to give a universally valid answer, in an apprehensiblepractical way and using plain language. Great philosophers and thinkers such as Epicurus, the Hedonists, the Stoics, the Existentialists, Nietzsche, the Nihilists, the Tao, Bertrand Russell, Erich Fromm, Viktor Frankl… and monotheistic and polytheistic religions have offered their masterful proposals over time. But in this article, we want to offer a practical application that can be useful and helpful to everyone.

When are we aware of whether our life has had a purpose?

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We consider that the critical moment, when faced with the question “Has my life had meaning?”, when we are more clairvoyant, is in the last stretch of our existence, when we are about to cross the line that separates life from death and, suddenly, it dawns on us. It is then that, when we look back, we know whether we have lived following our true nature, whether this one life we ​​have had on planet Earth, has been lived our way, following our dreams and longings, our vital drive, or we have lived a fake life, playing the role that our environment, or social pressure, expected —or, even worse, we thought it expected— of us. It is essential to reflect on that before reaching this final stretch (where it manifests itself with all its forcefulness), and we hope that this post can contribute a little to it.

What should you do for your life to have a purpose?

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It’s not necessarily about doing great things, such as writing any best sellers, planting a tree, having children, nor going down in history as a hero or a heroine (which could also be the case as long as that is what our essence pushes us to do). If our nature is to seek tranquility and harmony, and we have lived a peaceful, stable life without conflicts or great scares, our life will have had meaning; if, on the other hand, our life drive is to experience adventures, to take risks, or to live in a constant flow of adrenaline, and we have lived this way —even if we have not lasted many years—, our existence has had meaning; if what makes us feel good is giving to others and we have dedicated ourselves to caring for or helping as many people as we can, this has been a meaningful life. Besides, this last type of vital drive has a very positive effect on society and people’s happiness.
To live a life that contradicts your nature, your longings, and your vital drive is to live a fake life, a kind of living death, a tragedy that when one realizes it, is often too late.

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How can you know what you really want in life?

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Viktor E. Frankl said that ‘The meaning of life is to give life meaning’, but of course, it is not so simple to know what one wants in life. But of course, knowing what you want in life is complex. Sometimes, in such a challenging world, we get lost in a labyrinth. It seems almost impossible… but let’s do the following exercise: in front of others, we can put on a thousand masks, but all alone, in front of the mirror, we are not usually hypocrites with ourselves (true, we can deceive ourselves, but deep down we know it). We know perfectly well in which situations we feel good and in which not, what we like to do and what we don’t like at all.
That said, write all those situations/activities/aspects that you don’t like. Then, as in the old photographic revelations, if we have the negative, it is much easier to take the positive out of it; that is to say, the photograph of what we do want in life, that situation that will lead us to a meaningful lifeIf you have a negative picture of everything we don’t like, then the truth will be revealed to you: if you don’t enjoy being alone at home, maybe you should start a family and have children; if you get bored quickly, you may need a fast-paced job, in which we have to do different tasks; if you can’t stand the idea of ​​being locked in an office executing mechanical orders, maybe you should be brave and go out to discover the world (if possible, a little better equipped than Christopher Johnson McCandless, on whom the book and movie Into the wild were based, and a person we deeply respect here); if you don’t like uncertainty at all, and it makes you suffer, then maybe you should just look for a stable job, take out a fixed interest mortgage and Bob’s your uncle. Unfelt life is an inert desert, it’s like living death; felt life is an oasis brimming with vegetation, fresh water, and trees that give us the tastiest fruits.

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Do you need to have a purpose in life?

There is a very famous phrase that reads “The purpose of life is a life of purpose”. As we see it, having a purpose in life helps as long as that purpose is aligned with your life drive and values. That engine moves many people and gives meaning to their lives. But can you live a meaningful life without a purpose? We —and perhaps this will surprise you—think so. For many, finding a goal in their existence in such a complex world becomes a maze from which they can never escape, but a contemplative life, in which one lets oneself be carried away, or a life without a default path, the main incentive of which is precisely that every day surprises you, that every day is different, can be a life lived with significant meaning as long as it matches the vital drive of the one who is living it.

Fear, our sworn enemy

Fear
scared
scared woman
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What is the purpose of life?
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Fear is our greatest enemy, a contumacious saboteur, a wizard of lies that is always ready not to let us live fully. You can always resort to ‘what if this happens,’ ‘what if that happens,’ ‘what if we lose everything,’ ‘what if I get hurt?’… The biggest risk we face is not living in accordance with our true nature, which can result in a loss or waste of our life. There will always be excuses for not doing what our soul pushes us to do, but there will always be people like Albert Casals i Serradó, who went around the world in a wheelchair, who will proof that nothing is impossible. Don’t let self-limiting beliefs ruin your life . Let’s not write our life in lowercase. Let’s dare to make the most of our existence.

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Your biggest mistake is being afraid of being wrong

Oscar Wilde once said that ‘Most people die of a sort of creeping common sense and discover too late that the only things one never regrets are one’s mistakes’.
Pursuing a full life, aligned with your values, with your nature, deserves each and every mistake you may make along the way, as long as you do not harm others (since your freedom ends where the freedom of others begins, with equal legitimacy). Therefore , we must not be afraid of making mistakes if we go in the direction we have set; what we do have to fear is not doing anything out of fear of making mistakes, since this, paradoxically, is the biggest mistake of all. Many remain paralyzed, postponing vital projects they are excited about, while life flashes by. We need to find a way to combat this nonsense that prevents us from fulfiling ourselves while being true to our nature.

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So what can you do now? 

Exercise
Writing
man in front of the mirror
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Do this exercise of total and sincere introspection, of profound penetration of human nature (let it flow; be yourself; you need to be brutally honest, no-one is judging you):

  1. Sit in front of the mirror.
  2. Take a sheet of paper and a pen.
  3. Make a vertical line that separates the plane in two.
  4. Think about all those situations and aspects that you don’t like 
  5. Write them on the left side of the sheet.
  6. Give youself time. It is very important. If necessary, a whole day. 
  7. Once you’re done, write on the right-hand side the opposite of that aspect you noted on the left-hand side (for example, if you hate noise, write it on the left; on the right, write ‘silence’). 
  8. In the end, you will have the color photograph from the negative on the right. You must do this simple —but at the same time so momentous— exercise when you are quiet, keeping mood interference to a minimum. From there, every day, do things and make decisions that bring you closer to each of these points on the right, and avoid situations on the left as much as you can. You don’t have to do it all at once. Little by little, you will get closer to it … until one day, despite all the problems inherent in human existence, as if by magic, you will feel good, happy, because deep down you will know that you are living a meaningful life, a life not facing outwards, but facing inwards.

Does life really need to have meaning?

But, what if life has no meaning? Would it be a tragedy? Philosopher EM Cioran said, ‘The fact that life has no meaning is a reason to live — moreover, the only one“. The Cynics believed that the meaning of life is to live free or self-sufficient while eliminating dependence on something or someone, such as society or economy, and acting freely without basing your thoughts on something or someone.
The brilliant French writer Albert Camus was clear about it: life has no meaning. He defined this philosophical theory as ‘absurdist’ and developed it thoroughly in works such as L’ Estranger and The Rebel, but especially in The Myth of Sisyphus. Other thinkers such us Jean-Paul Sartre or Arthur Schopenhauer and playwrights such like Samuel Becket, each in their own way, have also gone deeper into the void.
*The Cynical school was founded in Ancient Greece in the second half of the fourth century a.C. The Greek Antisthenes was its founder, and Diogenes of Sinope was one of the most recognized and representative philosophers of his time.
But the fact is that humans have an almost innate need to endow life with meaning, and if we perceive that it does not have any, we suffer from a kind of horror vacui (fear of emptiness), and we look for it in philosophy, religion, or spirituality. But in this post, we do not close the door to the fact that a life without transcendental meaning can be fully lived. Maybe we’ll talk about it in the future.

Conclusion

First of all, It is essential to read the entire article in order to understand this conclusion in its whole dimension. The meaning of life lies in leading a life aligned with our nature, life drive, and values. It is paramount to be genuine, free from barriers and external pressure. We have to be honest with ourselves. If it’s hard for us to visualize the lifestyle that suits us best, being clear about how we don’t want to live —much more approachable— will help us know what lifestyle fits our nature best. If we manage to lead a life that matches our personality, we can say that our lives will have a purpose before we cross the line that separates life from death. If we have reached this stage (whatever age we are), we will be able to leave in peace and with a smile, with the peace of mind that comes from having dared to live LIFE IN CAPITAL LETTERS.

We hope you found this post interesting. If you want to have your say, you can do so in the comments section below; if you think it might help someone you know, please share it. Thank you very much for visiting TDB (Nuts)!

Medieval Catalan coins: the Croats

Medieval Coins. Croat. Catalan Coins, Silver. Numismatics.

Medieval coins of Catalonia

Here is one of the most sought-after Catalan coins: the medieval Croats. The medieval croats and the banknotes issued by the Generalitat de Catalunya —the Government of Catalonia— during the Civil War —although the latter, to be more accurate, would fall into the world of note collecting known as notaphily— are the Holy Grail of Catalan numismatics. Yes, there is a great deal of interest in these pieces, and in recent years they have gone up in price at both auctions and numismatics.

History

The Quatern was a Catalan vellon coin created by Peter II in 1212. It was also known as Court coin. Its value was four silver marks and eight copper marks.

In 1346 Peter III the Ceremonious created a new coin: the gold Florin of Aragon , and established a mint in Perpignan for the minting of royal gold coins . It was minted imitating of those of Florence. In addition to Perpignan, it was also minted in Barcelona, Gerona, Valencia and Majorca, but never in Aragon.


The Croat was a Barcelona silver coin, minted from the time of Peter II (1177 – 1213) until Philip V (1683-1746). It was also called Barcelonese silver money, real silver money and thick white coin. Its name comes from the cross on the back. It was abolished in 1718 with the New Royal Decree .

The Counts of Barcelona gradually extended their dominion and currency throughout Catalonia.
The seca (mint) in Barcelona minted coins called Diners and Obols, which had less and less silver content.
It was in the time of James I, the Conqueror, that the stability of the numerarie was achieved. The numeraire is liquid or cash money, i.e. coins, banknotes and short-term current accounts. The numeraire also usually refers to the amount of circulating money (mainly coins and banknotes) that exists in a country at any given time.

The first attempt to make a strong silver coin struck in Barcelona dates back to 1268, but it could not be made due to the opposition of the nobles of Barcelona.

The famous Barcelona coin, called the Croat, was first struck in the first week of August 1285, and it was Peter II, the Great, son of James I, the Conqueror, who ordered it to be issued.
The birth of the Catalan Croat is associated with the period of expansion of the Catalan-Aragonese Crown.

The obverse shows the bust of the king who decided to strike the coins, always looking to the left and with a crown on his head. The reverse of the coin shows the long-armed cross, which is the origin of the old name ‘crucesigneds’ and later the Croat.

The weight of the croat was 3.23 grams of silver.

Medieval silver coins
Catalonia
Catalan Croats

How many grams are an ounce?

To put this in context, one ounce equals 28.35 grams.

Peter II the Great (1276-1285)

The first legal issues of croats began in the first week of August 1285, a few months before the death of Peter II the Great (who reigned from 1276 to 1285 and was the son of James I the Conqueror and Violant of Hungary). Very few examples of croats from this reign are known and therefore are extremely rare.

Peter II Croat

Price

It is a rare croat, and the starting price at auction is 750€, easily reaching 3000€.

It must be said that there are croats that are much more affordable than those of Peter II. For example, a croat of James II (1291-1327) has a starting price of around €80 and is sold for €216 in VF, VF20 or VF25 (according tothe sheldon coin grading scale). A croat of Peter III can be obtained for little more than €80.

For those of you who are already familiar with coin collecting, you already know that the condition of the coin has a direct impact on its price. However, sometimes there are coins that are so unique that their condition takes a back seat.

Roast someone

to roast someone meaning, examples
To roast someone in other languages

Meaning

to roast someone means to admonish, criticize severely or speak angrily and vigorously to someone.

Roast someone examples

You are late for work for the fourth time this week; your boss will really roast you this time.

Wow! She has roasted him in front of everybody. If she wanted to air their dirty laundry, she could’ve done it in private.

Roast someone in Bulgarian

In Bulgarian, if we want to roast someone, we should say дразня (pronounced draznja) (literally, to tease).

Roast someone in Catalan

In Catalan you can say dir el nom del porc (a algú) (literally, to tell the name of the pig (to someone)’

Rast someone in Dutch

In Dutch, the equivalent to roast is het vuur aan de schenen leggen (nl) (literally, put the fire to the shins).

Roast someone in German

In German, an equivalent expression is rüffeln (literally to ruffle).

Roast someone in French

 In French we would use the expression s’en prendre à qn (literally, to attack sb).

Roast someone in Japanese

In Japanese is 酷評する( kokuhyō suru) (literally, to criticize).

Roast someone in Russian

In Russian, a similar expression is задираться (ru) impf (pronounced zadiratʹsja) (informal) (literally, to bully), цапаться (ru) impf (pronounced capatʹsja) (informal)

Roast someone in Spanish

In Spanish (from Spain), in a colloquial way, you say echar un rapapolvo (literally, to throw a scold to someone) or poner verde a alguien (literally, to put green to somebody, although in this second meaning normally the criticized person is not present).

That’s all folks!

Thank you for visiting TDB / Nuts!

Slow and steady wins the race in other languages

Slow and steady wins the race meaning, origin and translations

Meaning

Slow but steady wins the race is a proverb that means slow, productive progress leads to success. Patient work will eventually overcome any problem or challenge.

Origin

Originated from one of Aesop’s Fables, The Tortoise and the Hare.

The story concerns a Hare who ridicules a slow-moving Tortoise. Tired of the Hare’s arrogant behaviour, the Tortoise challenges him to a race. The hare soon leaves the tortoise behind and, confident of winning, takes a nap midway through the race. When the Hare awakes, however, he finds that his competitor, crawling slowly but steadily, has arrived before him.

Slow and steady wins the race in Catalan

A poc a poc i bona lletra (literally, Little by little and good handwriting)

Slow and steady wins the race in Arabic

من تأنى أدرك ما تمنى (Literally, He who doesn’t rush, gets wherever he wants)

Slow and steady wins the race in Basque

Azkar heldu nahi baduk, astiro joan (Literally, If you want to get in time, go slowly)

Slow and steady wins the race in Chinese

欲速則不達 (zh) (literally, Haste is not enough), 欲速则不达 (zh) (yù sù zé bù dá), 心急吃不了熱豆腐 (zh), 心急吃不了热豆腐 (zh) (xīnjí chībuliǎo rè dòufu, literally, More haste less speed), 不怕慢,只怕站 (bù pà màn, zhǐ pà zhàn) (literally, Not afraid of slowness, just standing)

Slow and steady wins the race in Finnish

kilpikonna voittaa jäniksen (the turtle beats the hare)

Slow and steady wins the race in French

Qui trop se hâte, reste en chemin (literally, Who hurries too much, stays on the way), also Rien ne sert de courir, il faut partir à point (literally, there is no point in running, you have to leave on time)

Slow and steady wins the race in Galician

A gran présa, gran vagar (literally, In a hurry, great wandering)

Slow and steady wins the race in German

Eilen kommt spät ans Ende (literally, Hurry is in the end late)

Slow and steady wins the race in Italian

Chi va piano va sano e va lontano (literally, Who goes slowly goes far)

Slow and steady wins the race in Latin

Festinare nocet ( literally, rushing hurts)

Slow and steady wins the race in Polish

kropla drąży skałę (pl) (literally, drop drills Rock)

Slow and steady wins the race in Portuguese

Devagar e sempre (literally, Slow and always)

Slow and steady wins the race in Scottish Gaelic

Ruigidh each mall muileann (literally, A slow horse will reach a mill)

Slow and steady wins the race in Spanish

 A gran prisa, gran vagar (literally, In great haste, great wander)

This post will be updated shortly. Thank you for your visit! We hope you liked this post.

Other posts that you might like to read are:

(to) Pull one’s chestnuts out of the fire
Bend over backwards in other languages
Every cloud has a silver lining in other languages
Jeepers creepers!
Animal idioms
That’s a different kettle of fish
Most important Catalan Sayings and Proverbs translated to English
Common British English expressions
Common British English expressions II

Learn Catalan with couch Polyglot

Catalan language

Learn Catalan (1) | Slow Catalan phrases for beginners

Catalan is an important language ​​in the European Union, with more speakers than Swedish, Finnish, Danish, Greek, Czech and Hungarian. Unfortunately, it still does not have the institutional support it deserves, and in spite of the difficulties, today it is alive and kicking thanks to the people that love it. Since there is an increasing number of people all over the world who start studying this beautiful and interesting Latin language, here is a Youtube channel by Laura Homs we strongly recommend: Couch Polyglot (click here to visit the channel)

Couch Polyglots

Catalan evolved from Vulgar Latin in the Middle Ages around the eastern Pyrenees. Nineteenth-century Spain saw a Catalan literary revival,culminating in the early 1900s.

Since the Spanish transition to democracy (1975–1982), Catalan has been institutionalized as an official language, language of education, and language of mass media; all of which have contributed to its increased prestige. In Catalonia, there is an unparalleled large bilingual European non-state linguistic community.

As the channel information reads: Welcome, Willkommen, Bienvenu, Bienvenido, benvingut, benvenuto, Добро пожаловать! This channel is all about language learning. You will find useful tips and challenges, as well as learning material for Spanish, Catalan and German. The videos are in different languages and all non-English videos include subtitles. The Spanish and Catalan videos also include a transcription so that you can read along if needed. Have fun and hope to see you around. Do you want to know more about me? You can find me on Udemy: https://www.udemy.com/user/laura-homs-2/