Inscribed on the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion, southeast of Athens, is the name BYRON. It is possible that the English poet Lord Byron carved it during his first visit to Greece at age 22, before he became famous. He later wrote:
Place me on Sunium’s marbled steep, Where nothing, save the waves and I, May hear our mutual murmurs sweep …But despite all that, there remains no definitive answer as to whether Byron carved it himself, or a fan of his poetry thought to add his name there.
African-American cowgirl Nellie Brown, and her horse. Circa 1900 - 1915.
An Aztec creation myth states that there were four failed attempts to create humans who would survive. It was only on the fifth attempt, when humans began to eat corn, that they were able to propogate themselves and continue as a species.
The ethnic and religious composition of Bosnia and Herzegovina before and after the conflict (which began in 1991).
The world's tallest... structure ... was the Washington Monument in Washington, DC for five years. It was completed in 1884, and was surpassed by the Eiffel Tower in 1889.
Wyoming's Periodic Spring is well-named. It flows for roughly 15 minutes, then goes dry for 15 minutes, then repeats again. It is the world's largest intermittent spring, or rhythmic spring, or breathing spring. This is likely caused by an oddly-shaped cavern fed by spring water in the rock behind the spring. There's only about 100 known intermittent springs in the world. Another famous one is in Jerusalem! Although it no longer runs intermittently naturally, and a pump is used to imitate it.
In ancient Mesopotamia, cuneiform clay tablets were often so small that reading them was difficult and impractical. But they were not really designed to be read. Instead they were designed to be checked, by someone who already knew the text by heart, and just needed a reminder about what the next section or word started with.
The written clay tablet was to assist in the perfect passing-down of oral information between generations. Students learned by listening and repeating chanting, singing, or reciting -- not by reading.
Courtesy of Pew Research Center
Honolulu was such an alluring port that many strong-minded captains refused to touch there, for desertions of nearly half a ship’s complement were not uncommon. In time the problem became so acute that ship owners banded together and paid head money to native gangs for each deserter hauled in from the hills or lush valleys, but some wise Yankee skippers avoided the whole problem by cruising back and forth in sight of land and sending ashore only longboats manned by trusted officers, who accumulated the required provisions and rowed back to their reluctant ships. Occasionally, of course, even such special crews deserted.
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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