Ps. lxxxix is in many ways the most interesting and important of the royal psalms. Taken as a whole it is a lamentation (vss. 39-52) over the frustration of God's promises to the Davidic dynasty (vss. 20-38), which were made possible by his cosmic sovereignty (6-15). The first part of the psalm recalls the hymns of Yahweh's enthronement (xlvii, xciii, xcv-c), the second, the oracle of Nathan (2 Sam. vii; Ps. cxxxii), and the third, the individual lamentations of the Psalter. This complexity of form and content has led most commentators to divide the psalm into two or three originally separate poems, and to interpret their significance more or less independently of each other. It is the aim of the present study to demonstrate the formal integrity of the psalm as it appears in the Psalter, and to discover, if possible, its original liturgical setting.
Savant syndrome is a condition where prodigious talent co-occurs with developmental difficulties such as autism spectrum conditions (ASC). To better understand savant skills, we previously proposed a link with synaesthesia: that savant syndrome may arise in ASC individuals who also happen to have synaesthesia. A second, unrelated claim is that people with autism may have higher rates of synaesthesia. Here we ask whether synaesthesia is indeed found more often in autism per se, or only in cases where autism co-occurs with savant skills. People with autism in previous studies when tested for synaesthesia were not differentiated into those with and without savant abilities. Here we tested three groups: people with autism who also have savant skills (), people with autism without savant skills (), and controls without autism (). We used a validated test to diagnose grapheme–colour synaesthesia. Results show a significantly higher prevalence of synaesthesia in people with ASC, but only those who also have savant skills. This suggests that synaesthesia in autism is linked to those with savant abilities rather than autism per se. We discuss the role of synaesthesia in the development of prodigious talent.
The ability of animals to disperse towards their original home range following displacement has been demonstrated in a number of species. However, little is known about the homing ability of three-spine sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus), an important model species in behavioural ecology. In addition, few studies have examined the role of social facilitation in relation to homing behaviour in fishes. We examined homing behaviour of sticklebacks displaced over distances of between 80 m and 160 m in land-drains with directional water flow. Fish were translocated from their original capture site, tagged and then released either in groups or solitarily. We performed recapture transects either one or two days later. Data provided by recaptured sticklebacks show that the fish dispersed in the direction of their original capture site. Although fish translocated downstream typically moved further than those translocated upstream, both dispersed towards their original capture site. There was no difference between fish released solitarily or in groups in their homing ability and indeed there was little evidence that fish translocated in groups remained together following their release. The homing ability of the fish was demonstrated by the finding that up to 80% of fish returned to their home ranges within two days of release over a distance equivalent to approximately 5000 body lengths of these small fish.