Tuesday, December 22, 2009
[A]ccording to a new academic paper ... [a]ngels can't fly.
A leading biologist has compared the physiology of flighted species with the representations of spiritual and mythical creatures in art – and found the angels and fairies that sit atop of Christmas trees did not get there under their own steam.
Prof Roger Wotton, from University College London, found that flight would be impossible for angels portrayed with arms and bird-like feathered wings.
"Even a cursory examination of the evidence in representational arts shows that angels and cherubs cannot take off and cannot use powered flight," said Prof Wotton. "And even if they used gliding flight, they would need to be exposed to very high wind velocities at take off - such high winds that they would be blown away and have no need for wings.
Pratchett & Gaimen had it right in "Good Omens":
"Firstly: angels simply don't dance. It's one of the distinguishing characteristics that marks an angel. They may listen appreciatively to the Music of the Spheres, but they don't feel the urge to get down and boogie to it. So, none."