Tuesday, 31 May 2022
Monday, 30 May 2022
The Triad of Osorkon
|Nubia, the region south of Egypt, was conquered by the pharaohs. It was freed when the Egyptian empire collapsed around 1100 BC. It then rose to provide a line of Egyptianized kings. King Piankhy established the 25th Dynasty. These kings faced repeated Assyrian invasions, battling the famous King Ashurbanipal. They were pushed out of Egypt around 660 B.C.|
Sunday, 29 May 2022
|In Greek mythology, a Gorgon is a female creature. The name derives from the ancient Greek word gorgós, which means "dreadful". The term commonly refers to any of three sisters who had hair made of living, venomous snakes. They turned those who beheld them to stone. Traditionally, while two of the Gorgons were immortal, Stheno and Euryale, their sister Medusa was not, and she was slain by Perseus.|
|One of the earliest representations on coins is on an electrum stater from Parium. Going even further back, there is a similar image from the Knossos palace, dating to the fifteenth century BC.|
One of two Gorgon Heads from the cuirass (breastplate) of Macedonian King Philip II
|Greek Apollonia Pontica Silver Drachm struck 4th century B.C.||Perseus and the gorgon.|
Friday, 27 May 2022
Ancient gold coins, gold plate, found in India
|The Vijayanagara empire was an Indian empire that existed from 1336 through 1660. It was founded by Harihara (Hakka) and his brother Bukka Raya.
The empire is named after its capital city Vijayanagara, now Hampi in modern Karnataka, India.|
Thursday, 26 May 2022
Bonhams Natural History Auction
|Allosaurus claw boasts exceptional preservation and size. Dinosaur claws are much more rare than dino teeth, as dinosaurs' teeth were replaced throughout their lifetimes, whereas claws were not. A formidable predator, Allosaurus had short arms with three-fingered hands completed by razor-sharp claws.|
Allosaurus hand claws are much larger than Tyrannosaurus.
|A virtually complete Struthiomimus sedens hand, mounted in a lifelike pose. As in all members of the theropod subgroup Ornithomimidae, all three fingers are nearly the same length. Struthiomimus, meaning ostrich mimic, is known from the Late Cretaceous in North America. The genus possessed a small, light, toothless skull, a slender, flexible neck and, most likely, a birdlike horny beak covering the jaws. |
Wednesday, 25 May 2022
The Ancient Kingdom of Axum
|The greatest empire to ever exist in Africa, the Kingdom of Aksum lasted from around 100 AD to 940 AD, and extended across East Africa and beyond, including modern-day Eritrea, Ethiopia, Djibouti and Sudan.
Located in the northern province of Tigray, Aksum remained the capital of Ethiopia until the seventh century CE. The ancient Kingdom of Axum, also known as Askum, stands out for its early use of coins.|
|The kingdom is famous for its stone cut obelisks. They were carved out of a single stone and marked graves and burial chambers. Its believed that the Queen of Sheba ruled the Kingdom of Aksum for more than 50 years. According to legend, the Ark of the Covenant came to Ethiopia and has till now been guarded by a succession of monks.|
Tuesday, 24 May 2022
Orchids good as gold
|According to cops it was a professional job and the thieves knew exactly what they were after. Bearing all the marks of an art gallery heist, this was the scene at Kew Gardens in 2014 where a rare African water lily was snatched. Its thought to have been sold to an unscrupulous private collector.|
|The legal plant trade amounts to £9 billion a year worldwide. There is a kudos in owning anything rare. Although it’s impossible to give precise figures for plants, there is a thriving black market involving private collectors. If someone wants a species badly enough they will pay vast amounts of money for it. Rare and new discoveries of wild plants are the most prized.|
Hochstetter Butterfly Orchid
|Some orchids species are being driven to extinction. One of the world’s rarest orchids was re-discovered in 2014 by botanists on a volcanic island in the Atlantic. There were 250 plants of the unique species on the island of Sao Jorge in the Portuguese Azores, making it the rarest in Europe.|
Lady's Slipper orchids
The albino form of the Vanda sanderiana or the Waling-waling is a rare and prized plant for orchid collectors and breeders.
Phragmipedium kovachii was first found in 2001 and is referred to as one of the most important natural history discoveries in the last decade.
Cypripedium calceolus. It receives round-the-clock police surveillance where it grows on a Lancashire golf course.
Paphiopedilum rothschildianum, an orchid that is on top of the endangered species list.
Bornean slipper orchid
Shenzhen Nongke orchid took eight years to develop and in 2005, it was sold for about $200k.
|A new species of orchid found in Colombia has been named Telipogon diabolicus, because the heart of the flower has an eerie resemblance to a devil's head. There aren't many flowers of this kind in existence.|
Researchers found a small patch of about 30 orchids between the borders of two Colombian departments. So far, this is its only known habitat.
Sunday, 22 May 2022
Truk Lagoon National Monument
A visual history lesson from WW II lies at the bottom of Truk Lagoon. The lagoon hosted Operation Hailstone on Feb 16/17, 1944.
|The Japanese fleet lost an estimated 10 warships, over 30 supply vessels, 275 aircraft, light cruisers, and destroyers, and an estimated 4,500 military personnel during the two-day strike.|
|Forewarned by intelligence a week before the US raid, the Japanese had withdrawn their larger warships (heavy cruisers and aircraft carriers) to Palau.|
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