A 300-Year Old Recipe for Fried Chicken

Today is apparently a food day! Here is your second food-related post of the day: a 1736 recipe for fried chicken.

Ancient Settlement On Florida Island Revealed By Lasers

Drone-mounted lasers appear to have detected details of the architecture of an ancient island settlement off Florida’s Gulf coast, using 3D mapping technology. Archaeological remains were first noted on Raleigh Island in 1990. In-person exploration of the area in 2010 revealed the presence of a settlement dating from 900 to 1200 CE.

Unfortunately, the island’s dense foliage impeded traditional land-based surveys of what remained. That’s why this drone-based laser survey, almost ten years later, is so important.

Among other details we now can see 37 residential areas “enclosed by ridges of oyster shell” that are up to 12ft (4m) tall. Archaeological digs at 10 identified residential areas found evidence that beads made from large marine mollusks were produced in these settlements. Stone tools, used to make the beads, were also found. The beads were likely for import among inland chiefdoms. In areas that were far from the coast, such as the lower midwest of the US, mollusk beads and even sizable sea mollusks were imported, where they were used as social capital in economic and social interactions between groups.

Germany’s Day of Fate

November 9th is a momentous day to Germans. Many major events in German history occurred on that day: Robert Blum's death in 1848, Kaiser Wilhelm's abdication in 1918, Einstein's Nobel Prize win in 1922, the failed Munich Putsch/Beer Hall Putsch in 1923, Kristallnacht in 1938, and the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. Since shortly after World War II, November 9th was nicknamed Schicksalstag ("Day of Fate") by some media members. But its current widespread use in Germany started after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

"Kaiunbashi Bridge (First National Bank in Snow)" by Kobayashi Kiyochika. It comes from a series of prints "Pictures of Famous Places in Tokyo" (1876–81) where the artist focused on how light, from the new technologies that were being introduced, were transforming Tokyo. The Meiji Restoration had just occurred and industrialization and westernization being rushed in by the new government. The artist’s presentations of dawn, dusk, and night evoked a pensive mood suggesting a personal uncertainty in a moment of major societal change.

Pram on a Sledge, Switzerland 1926.

My favorite detail is the lady sharing a smile with the child. My second favorite detail is the stuffed pig, perched in the child's lap.

Some Human Languages Are Really Faster Than Others

Across languages, some are spoken faster and some are spoken slower. Yes, Italians really do speak quickly! But it turns out that across languages, information is conveyed at the same speed. By calculating how much information every syllable in a language conveys, it’s possible to compare the “efficiency” of different languages. More efficient languages tend to be spoken slower. Less efficient languages tend to be spoken faster. The end result is that everyone is getting information at the same rate -- but some languages make their speakers put in more effort to convey the same amount of information. At least, that's what one study of 17 Eurasian languages suggests.

Newly Discovered Bat-Like Dinosaur Reveals the Intricacies of Prehistoric Flight

About 160 million years ago the first feathered dinosaurs started stretching their wings and taking to the skies. Not all flying dinosaurs were built the same, however. Discoveries in China are revealing at least one dinosaur family had bat-like wings -- rather than bird-like wings. In 2015 the first bat-like dinosaur was found and named Yi Qi. Recently, a second bat-like dinosaur related to Yi has been found. Though the recently-discovered Ambopteryx longibrachium was likely a glider, rather than a flier, the fossil is helping scientists discover how dinosaurs first took to the skies. And it proves that Yi Qi was not a one-off (like platypuses today) but an alternate evolutionary path for airborne dinosaurs.

What Does Moss Tell Us About Ötzi the Iceman?

When Ötzi the Iceman died around 5,300 years ago in the Italian Alps, he was surrounded by thousands of microscopic fragments of bryophytes, a plant group that includes mosses and the flowerless green plants known as liverworts. Now a team has analyzed bryophyte fragments recovered from Ötzi's clothes, gastrointestinal tract, and pieces of ice around him.

Although only 23 bryophyte species currently live near the glacier where Ötzi was found, about 75 species were identified by the team. This included 10 liverwort species, which are rarely recovered from archaeological sites. The team also found that only 30% of the identified species were local to where Ötzi died. The rest came from lower elevations, helping to confirm the route Ötzi took as he journeyed to what became his final resting place more than 10,000 feet above sea level.

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    HISTORICAL NON-FICTION

    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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