Artistic Snobbery

Serious American artists during the Early American Period (1789 - 1815) thought that genre scenes were too mean and lowly for their talent. So major painters such as John Vanderlyn and Samuel Morse scorned the depicting of ordinary folk - except, said Vanderlyn, Italian peasants. With their lack of "fashion and frivolity," Italian peasants, Vanderlyn declared, were close enough to nature to possess a neoclassical universality that was worth depicting.

Charles Carroll III was the only Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence. He also had the highest education, was the wealthiest man, had the longest life, and was the last surviving signer. A very impressive man all around.

Boston's Original 1630 Shoreline, Overlaid With Its Modern Infrastructure

On top of the original shoreline are the city's current roads and metro stations. Which means Massachusetts built land, then put a metro tunnel through that man-made land!

A Map of Australia's Languages (Before Colonization)

Australia once was home to 4% of the world's spoken languages. A lot considering the continent's relatively low population density.

35 Lesser-Known Inventions of Famous Inventors

Some of these inventions were ahead of their time. And some were just weird - like Tesla's 4-foot radio-controlled toy boat

The major Incan god, Inti, was the god of the sun. You can see his sun on the flag of Argentina (above), the coat of arms of Bolivia, the coat of arms of Ecuador, and on the historical flag of Peru.

Feathers were highly valued in Hawai'i and were an important part of their religion. Feathers were used in representations of the gods. A high-status cloak made of feathers, called an 'ahu 'ula, was a marker of prestige and power. 'Ahu 'ula were worn with feathered helmets, or mahiole -- a chief would have been decked from head to toe in feathers! When Hawai'i became a kingdom in 1795, they were influenced by the monarchies of Europe, and eventually gave themselves a coat of arms. On it were two figures wearing red and yellow 'ahu 'ula and a mahiole.

On March 13th, 1781, from his home in Bath, England, the astronomer William Herschel discovered the planet Uranus. It is the third-largest planet in the solar system and visible to the naked eye! Yet it was not understood to be a planet, until the modern era, due to its dimness and its slow orbit around the sun.

How Big Was That Empire?

Now you can compare all the largest empires that have ever existed, by geographic area. Thank you modern geography!

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    By Lillian Audette

    This blog is a collection of the interesting, the weird, and sometimes the need-to-know about history, culled from around the internet. It has pictures, it has quotes, it occasionally has my own opinions on things. If you want to know more about anything posted, follow the link at the "source" on the bottom of each post. And if you really like my work, buy me a coffee or become a patron!

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