Tag Archives: Books

1966: Dublin Sky

Evelyn Hofer: Dublin Sky (1966); from Dublin: A Portrait (1967).

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2018: memo for labor

memo for labor you cannot separate the job from the house from the rent from the earth from the food from the healthcare from the water from the transit from the war from the schools from the prisons from the … Continue reading

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1605: Not the Author of Don Quixote

According to Miguel de Cervantes, Miguel de Cervantes is not the author of Don Quixote. Nor was the book written in Spanish. Rather, Cervantes tells us, the true author is Cid Hamete Benengeli, the book was written in Arabic, and … Continue reading

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1924: The Diamond Palace

Diamantový zámek visí nad červeným mořem… (O zlatých zámcích.) Illustration by Artuš Scheiner for a collection of Fairy Tales by Božena Němcová (1924). The first line of the caption means “the diamond palace hung over the red sea,” and I … Continue reading

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1509: The Most Curious Book in the World

The following entry appears in Charles Carroll Bombaugh’s Gleanings from the Harvest Fields of Literature: A Melange of Excerpta, Curious, Humorous, and Instructive (1867): THE MOST CURIOUS BOOK IN THE WORLD The most singular bibliographic curiosity is that which belonged … Continue reading

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1919: Queen Alice

Illustrations from a 1919 photoplay edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass (source). The photos are stills from the 1915 silent film adaptation of the books, which starred Viola Savoy as Alice.

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1906: Martyr

F. Holland Day – Saint Sebastian (1906) Although the traditional iconography shows Saint Sebastian pierced by arrows, this is not actually how he dies and becomes a martyr. The 13th century Legenda aurea, a collection of hagiographies by Jacobus de … Continue reading

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1922: Seek the Kingdom of Heaven through Contempt of the World

Melchior Lechter’s frontispiece, title page, and first chapter title page for a 1922 edition of Thomas à Kempis’s Imitation of Christ. Written in the early 15th century, the work promotes piety, simplicity, and devotion as the key to a personal … Continue reading

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1655: Remedies

Selections from Thomas Lupton’s book A Thousand Notable Things on Various Subjects: Disclosed from the Secrets of Nature and Art, Practicable, Profitable, and of Great Advantage: Set Down from Long and Curious Study and Experience (1655): The Soles of the … Continue reading

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1750: Estimate

In 1750, astronomer Thomas Wright estimated the number of inhabited planets in the observable universe: Of…habitable Worlds, such as the Earth, all which we may suppose to be also of a terrestrial or terraqueous Nature, and filled with Beings of … Continue reading

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