Historical

Futuristic “Exosuit” Helps Explore Ancient Computer Shipwreck

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The ancient computer device, called the Antikythera Mechanism—not to be confused with the world’s first “iPad” (see “Ancient ‘iPad’ Uncovered in Byzantine Shipwreck“)—is an astrological clock dating to the second century BCE. A highly complex device used to track the motion of the planets, it features at least 40 bronze cogs and gears and would not be matched by later Europeans for ... Read More »

It’s Time for the Kurds to Set Up Their Own Nation

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Before welcoming the emerging state of Kurdistan in northern Iraq, I confess to having opposed its independence in the past. In 1991, after the Kuwait War had ended and as Saddam Hussein attacked Iraq’s 6 million Kurds, I made three arguments against American intervention on their behalf, arguments still commonly heard today: First, Kurdish independence would spell the end of ... Read More »

What’s New About the New Greek Galleries at MFA?

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Do people learn more at art museums when chronology governs a display or when a thematic narrative rules? It’s a perennial question, and traditionally many museums with extensive collections answer it with the former because, with a broad, deep array of art in a particular category, they can. Less well-endowed collections have often gone the thematic route simply because they ... Read More »

Race to protect Australia’s rock art: ‘I don’t know if we need to do an ice bucket challenge or what’

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Half the country’s rock paintings – some dating back 30,000 years – could disappear within 50 years, experts warn. Oliver Milman meets the Indigenous rangers and researchers working to protect delicate sandstone from the triple threat of mining, graffiti and feral animalsHalf the country’s rock paintings – some dating back 30,000 years – could disappear within 50 years, experts warn. Oliver Milman meets the ... Read More »

Should Oil Barons Like David Koch Be Funding our Museums?

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What is the point of a science museum? If you’ve visited the American Museum of Natural History in Manhattan recently, you might think it was designed to collect dust: moldy, ancient dioramas of cavemen stare out of lit-up boxes that don’t appear to have been entered by museum staff since the 1970s. But ask Brooklyn arts collective Not An Alternative, who ... Read More »

Is This Alexander the Great’s Tomb?

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One of biggest mysteries of modern archaeology might be solved in the coming days—and all eyes are on a huge circular structure that lies beneath an ancient Greek mound. Its entrances are guarded first by a pair of sphinxes, then by columns in the form of women—each stretching out an arm to ward off intruders. Beyond them lies one of ... Read More »

Mosques Of Greece

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Towering over the city of Ioannina, crowning the Ic Kale, or citadel, looms the Fethiye Mosque. Constructed near the ruins of a 13th century church dedicated to the archangels Gabriel and Michael, it commemorates the surrender of  the city to the Ottomans in 1430. In front of it, an intricately woven metal cage marks the spot where the great despot ... Read More »

Yemen: A Failed State

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Published on 10 Sep 2014 Subscribe to VICE News here: http://bit.ly/Subscribe-to-VICE-News Since 2011, when Yemeni youths took to the streets and sparked the eventual demise of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s regime, the country has fallen to pieces. The new embattled government is now struggling to cope with a bevy of issues, including sectarian rivalries, CIA drone strikes, and one ... Read More »

This Day in Jewish History / Poet who wrote about Armenian genocide (and wed an anti-Semite) is born

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Franz Werfel’s work ‘The Forty Days of Musa Dagh’ was widely seen as a warning about the Nazi rise to power. September 10, 1890 is the birthdate of Franz Werfel, the Prague-born Jewish poet, dramatist and novelist, whose most acclaimed work, the 1933 “The Forty Days of Musa Dagh,” about the Armenian genocide, was widely read as a warning about ... Read More »