Tag Archives: 18th Century

1795: Zozozozozozozozozozozozo, zirrhading!

From Johann Matthäus Bechstein’s Gemeinnützige Naturgeschichte Deutschlands nach allen drey Reichen: ein Handbuch zur deutlichern und vollständigern Selbstbelehrung besonders für Forstmänner, Jugendlehrer und Oekonomen, volume 4 (1795): Twenty-four different strains or couplets may be reckoned in the song of a … Continue reading

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1799: Nine Family Heads

In the late 18th century, a physician from northern Africa named Saidi Saeed Abdoul Naim assembled this book of practices for dealing with physical, mental, and spiritual ailments. It also includes sections on secret alphabets, divination by sand, magic, and … Continue reading

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1792: The Chevalier d’Éon

Charles-Geneviève-Louis-Auguste-André-Timothée d’Éon de Beaumont—known more simply as the Chevalier d’Éon—was a French soldier, diplomat, and spy who settled in London, living from 1762-1777 as a man and from 1786-1810 as a woman. Born to a poor noble family in Burgundy … Continue reading

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1793: Cards for Equality

      Following the French Revolution and its toppling of the French monarchy, Urbain Jaume and Jean-Démosthène Dugourc conceived the idea of a new deck of playing cards that, like the revolutionaries, would toss out its “aristocracy” of Aces, Kings, … Continue reading

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1661: Elizabeth Russell

[———–] Russell, always known under the guise or habit of a woman, and answered to the name of Elizabeth, as registered in Streatham parish, Nov. 21, 1661, but at death proved to be a man. He was buried April 14th, … Continue reading

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1780: The Dark Day

The 19th of May, 1780, was distinguished by the phenomenon of a remarkable darkness over all the northern States, and is still called the Dark day. The darkness commenced between the hours of 10 and 11 A. M., and continued … Continue reading

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1939: The History of Spitting

The pioneering sociologist Norbert Elias published The Civilizing Process in 1939 with the aim of tracing how Europeans came to imagine what it meant to be “civilized.” In the book, he argues that increasing interdependence in society—in which difference social … Continue reading

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