May 8, 2024

Emily Dickinson’s Collection of Plants and Flowers Now Viewable Online for Free

The now-renowned Emily Dickinson is widely regarded as one of the most important poets of American literature. Famously a recluse in her later years, the overwhelming majority of her poems were never published until after her death. Even then, it wasn't until the 1920s, 40 years after her death, that her unconventional style was embraced and celebrated as proto-modern work. Poetry wasn't her only passion, though.

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April 23, 2024

Scholar Discovers 11th-Century Astrolabe With Inscriptions in Arabic, Hebrew, and Latin

An 11th-century astrolabe inscribed with Arabic, Hebrew, and Western numbers shows a strong collaboration between different religions and cultures. In a new report, Dr. Federica Gigante of the University of Cambridge discusses this scientific instrument, which she discovered thanks to a photo uploaded to a museum in Verona, Italy. Dr. Gigante, an expert on Islamic astrolabes, contacted the museum, which didn't know much about the astrolabe and thought it could be a fake.

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April 13, 2024

25,000 Images of Medieval Geoffrey Chaucer Manuscripts Are Now Online

Geoffrey Chaucer's compelling work earned him the title of “father of English literature,” and his influence can still be felt over six centuries after his passing. His most famous book, The Canterbury Tales, was published around 1400, meaning its earliest incarnations weren't easily accessible for readers and academics around the world—until now. Recently, the British Library announced that they've completed the digitization of all of their pre-1600 manuscripts containing Chaucer’s works.

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March 31, 2024

Archaeologists Have Determined What Ancient Roman Wine Tasted Like

The inhabitants of the ancient world routinely drank alcoholic beverages, as they were often safer than potentially polluted water. The ancient Romans were no different, as wine was a central part of their culture. By all estimates, they also drank a lot of it. Recently, archaeologists have been able to determine what their wine tasted like, allowing us to sense the flavor of the past.

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