Nine Incredible Facts About Cats

This is a guest post by Daniel Richardson. The everyday domestic cat is anything but everyday and domestic when you scratch beneath the surface of their history. Their demise was instrumental in the spread of the black plague in Europe and their relationship with the Egyptians has left a mark on history. Cats have held special […]

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Ernest Hemingway’s Blood and Money

In 1918, shortly before the culmination of the First World War, writer Ernest Hemingway was wounded by an Austrian mortar which exploded near him at Fossalta di Piave. He was a Red Cross ambulance driver at the time. Around thirty years later, Hemingway revisited the same spot during his trip to Venice. Initially, he wanted […]

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Gleanings from the Past #69

Returning Home In May last, Mr. Goring, of Staines, lost a valuable horse, for which he made the most diligent inquiry, but without effect. Last week, however, a gentleman driving through Staines in a gig, the horse made a sudden stop at Mr. Goring’s house, from which nothing could induce him to move The circumstance […]

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The Hooded Man Paradox: Knowing And Not Knowing Your Brother At The Same Time

Eubulides of Miletus (c. 400 BC), a philosopher of the Megarian school and a student of Euclid of Megara (not to be confused with Euclid of Alexandria who compiled the Elements of Euclid), posed the following paradox: You say you know your brother. Yet when your brother is hooded you are unable to identify him. […]

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An Ingenious Hiding Technique

  A friend emailed me this amusing video earlier: It’s a “tutorial” on how to escape police using a duct tube. The premise may sound silly, but the execution of the trick is clever.

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Gleanings From The Past #63

Numerical Coincidence I have heard of certain individuals being regulated in all the important events of their lives by certain peculiar numbers, which fell out to them respectively, with a strangeness of accuracy which it is almost impossible to reckon altogether the effect of chance. The following account, which is taken from the work of an Arabian historian, affords […]

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Gleanings From The Past #61

Reasons for the Delay The editor of the American Mechanic has encountered trials unknown to ordinary men. Hearken unto his wailings. “Owing to the facts, that our papermaker disappointed us, the mails failed, and deprived us of our exchanges, a Dutch pedlar stole our scissors, the rats ran off with our paste, and the devils […]

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Gleanings From The Past #60

Diplomacy Lord Wentworth gave some very cavalier advice to one going upon a diplomatic mission : he was up to the system of courts, or he would not have committed himself by such a satire. ” To secure yourself, and serve your country, you must at all times, and upon all occasions, speak the truth; […]

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A Victim Of His Own Invention

Sir Robert Watson-Watt was a Scottish physicist and a proponent of radio direction finding and radar technology. His ideas were credited for the defeat of more than a quarter of German U-boats and subsequently enabled the Royal Air Force to win the Battle of Britain in 1941. Several years later, he was pulled over by […]

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Gleanings From The Past #57

Ingenious Postmen The following ludicrous direction to a letter was copied verbatim from the original and interesting document: too dad Tomas hat the ole oke otchut I O Bary pade Sur plees to let ole feather have this sefe. The letter found the gentleman at ‘The Old Oak Orchard, Tenbury.’ In another letter, the writer, […]

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