Medieval Book Shrines

cumdach-of-st-patricks-gospels

Medieval Fragments has a terrific, well-illustrated post on book shrines: shrines designed to look like books. Called a cumdach, the book shrine was a kind of reliquary contains pages from books associated with saints, and occasionally first class relics: Usually quite small, they served as a portable vessel meant for the preservation of a sacred [Read More...]

7 Book Takes

7_quick_takes_sm1

I’ve never done one of Jen Fulwiler’s 7 Quick Takes before, but I see that Leah Libresco has turned Darwin Catholic’s Immediate Book Meme (and BTW, Darwins, your pizza recipe CHANGED OUR ENTIRE LIVES!) into a quick take thingie, and I know an idea worth stealing when I read one, so… — 1 —  What [Read More...]

Ancient Settlement Uncovered in Israel

Aerial shot of the settlement (photo by IAA)

A 2,300 year old village dating to the Seleucid Dynasty (or perhaps earlier) has been uncovered during work on a natural gas pipeline. The settlement reached its peak in the 3rd century BC, and by the time of Herod (1st Century BC) was abandoned. The settlement was found not far from Mitzpe Harel in the [Read More...]

Bombshell Discovery: Million-Year-Old Hominid Footprints in England

© Happisburgh Project

These are the oldest preserved hominid footprints found outside of Africa, and push back the date for a hominid presence in England to almost a million years ago.  I’ll just get out of the way and let the Independent tell you the news: Extraordinary new evidence of Britain’s first human inhabitants has been discovered in [Read More...]

New Theories About a Mysterious Manuscript

voynich

As I wrote here, I believe the Voynich Manuscript is an authentic, encrypted esoteric text. Much of the art–including flora and fauna–is fanciful, but some botanists believe some of the plants may resemble examples of New World vegetation depicted in other old manuscripts. Dr. Arthur Tucker from Delaware University … discovered similarities between specific plants [Read More...]

The Astrolabe [Beautiful Machines]

astrolabe2

When I was asked to come up with a header for this blog, I submitted two ideas to Patheos: a robotic riff on Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam, and an image of an astrolabe. Unable to choose between the two, I suggested that the art department just combine them, and the striking image above was born. I first encountered [Read More...]

Agricola [App o the Mornin']

agricola

Uwe Rosenberg’s board game Agricola has been perennial favorite since its release in 2007. Winner of the 2008 Spiel des Jahres award for “Best Complex Game,” it’s one of the finest examples of the “worker placement” genre, with rules for both family and advanced play making its complex mechanics more accessible. The iPad version of [Read More...]

Serving with Monty in North Africa in ’42 …

World War II Around The World (5)

… Reggie Bingham-Threepwood’s last reported words were, “I say, chaps, what does this d-” h/t: Vintage Everyday (The bomb wasn’t yet fused.) [Read more...]


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