Howard Carter (9 May 1874 – 2 March 1939) was an English archaeologist and Egyptologist who became world famous after discovering the intact tomb of 14th-century BC pharaoh Tutankhamun (colloquially known as “King Tut” and “the boy king”) in November 1922. Read More
A séance /ˈseɪ.ɑːns/ or seance is an attempt to communicate with spirits. The word “séance” comes from the French word for “seat,” “session” or “sitting,” from the Old French “seoir,” “to sit.” In French, the word’s meaning is quite general: one may, for example, speak of “une séance de cinéma” (“a movie session”). In English, however, the word came to be used specifically for a meeting of people who are gathered to receive messages from spirits or to listen to a spirit medium discourse with or relay messages from spirits; many people, including skeptics and non-believers, treat it as a form of entertainment. In modern English usage, participants need not be seated while engaged in a séance. One of the earliest books on the subject of communication amongst deceased persons was Communitation With the Other Side by George, First Baron Lyttelton, published in England in 1760. Among the notable spirits quoted in this volume are Peter the Great, Pericles, a “North-American Savage,” William Penn, and Christina, Queen of Sweden. The popularity of séances grew dramatically with the founding of the religion of Spiritualism in the mid-nineteenth century. Perhaps the best-known series of séances conducted at that time were those of Mary Todd Lincoln who, grieving the loss of her son, organized Spiritualist séances in the White House, which were attended by her husband, President Abraham Lincoln, and other prominent members of society. The 1887 Seybert Commission report marred the credibility of Spiritualism at the height of its popularity by publishing exposures of fraud and showmanship among secular séance leaders. Modern séances continue to be a part of the religious services of Spiritualist, Spiritist, and Espiritismo churches today, where a greater emphasis is placed on spiritual values versus showmanship. x
If I could get bands to come and play in my house, I’d like that. I’ve never been to a festival. I’m a creature of habit, mashed-potato comfort, I like rugs. Our sofa’s squishy. Maybe too squishy - it’s hard to get up sometimes.- MF
Empress Alexandra Feodorovna during an official visiti to France in 1896.
Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna of Russia wearing the uniform of her regiment, the 8th Voznesensky Uhlans – of which she was Colonel-in-Chief, in 1912.
Old cemetery at Santa Ana Wildlife Refuge.
viα atlasobscura: Xylotheks: Wondrous Wooden Books That Hold Wooden Collections
A xylothek (from the Greek for tree, xylon, and storing place, theke) is an object where the container is a fundamental component of the contents. The term usually refers to books that are both made of wood and filled with wood specimens. Xylotheks (also spelled xylotheques) first began appearing at the end of the 17th century in cabinets of curiosity. As time progressed, they grew larger and more systematic, with hundreds of individual volumes in a single collection, and are now consulted by those working in forestry, botany, forensics, art restoration, and other fields.
Xylotheks were particularly popular in late 18th century and early 19th century Germany. In these constructions, each book in the xylothek was made out of a particular type of wood, the spine covered with the corresponding bark and decorated with associated moss and lichens. Once opened, the book would reveal samples of dried leaves, flowers, seedlings, roots, and branches, with a special compartment in the spine holding a written description of the species’ biology and use. The Special Collections department of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences library in Alnarp, Sweden, contains a beautiful example of this type of xylothek, made in Nürnberg, Germany, at the start of the 19th century. Similar xylotheks are also found in France, Austria, Italy, and the Czech Republic. For even more on the rich history of Xylotheks, keep reading on Atlas Obscura…
Hat by Maison Virot, photo by Boissonnas & Taponier, Les Modes March 1907.
Doctor Who Meme: [3/10] Episodes → The Impossible Planet / The Satan Pit
"I’ve seen a lot of this universe. I’ve seen fake gods and bad gods and demi-gods and would-be gods. I’ve had the whole pantheon. But if I believe in one thing … just one thing … I believe in her!"