Gleanings From The Past #24


You are Getting Sleepy… Very Sleepy

The sound of water dropping slowly and steadily into a pan occupies and quiets the brain. This is the principle on which we are told to count sheep going over a fence, and do any sort of automatic thinking, if such an expression be permissible. A former victim of insomnia cured himself by keeping the eyeballs looking down. Another kept^ rolling them in one direction with good effect, repeating, meanwhile, a certain word or number. Long inspirations by the mouth and expirations by the nostrils, conceiving the air as currents, has been found effectual. All intellectual exercise should be stopped half-an-hour before bedtime. A tumbler of milk, instead of the usual copious draughts of water, taken during sleeplessness, will often help to overcome it.

The Eclectic Medical Journal, Vol. 48, 1888


It is not impossible that in a real dream of sleep, some one may have created an antagonist who beat him in an argument to prove that he was awake.

— Augustus De Morgan, Formal Logic, 1847

Secret Chamber

There is a secret chamber at the old Cumberland seat of the ancient family of Senhouse. To this day its position is known only by the heir-at-law and the family solicitor. This room at Nether Hall is said to have no window, and has hitherto baffled every attempt of those not in the secret to discover its whereabouts.

Remarkable as this may seem in these prosaic days, it has been confirmed by the present representative of the family, who, in a communication to us upon the subject, writes as follows: ‘It may be romantic, but still it is true that the secret has survived frequent searches of visitors. There is no one alive who has been in it, that I am aware, except myself.’

— Allan Fea, Secret Chambers and Hiding-Places, 1908

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My name Edmark M. Law. I work as a freelance writer, mainly writing about science and mathematics. I am an ardent hobbyist. I like to read, solve puzzles, play chess, make origami and play basketball. In addition, I dabble in magic, particularly card magic and other sleight-of-hand type magic. I live in Hong Kong. You can find me on Twitter` and Facebook. My email is

9 thoughts on “Gleanings From The Past #24

  1. In the array of flags, I do rough math in my mind and it seems that your visitors in the four major English language nations are in direct ratio to the nations’ approximate population. Your audience might be stable in the first four flags, but then it becomes random. In any case, you have a very good site. I wish I had the urge and ability to be so organized.

    Liked by 1 person

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