7 Archaeologists Who Were Real-Life Indiana Joneses

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We see a character like Indiana Jones and think to ourselves that there cannot possibly be any archaeologists who were like that in real life, but we would be wrong. The field itself is wrought with danger and discovery and while some archaeologists may be more comfortable behind a desk or teaching, these 7 are clearly more […]

Agloe: Fake Places That Only Exist to Catch Copycat Mapmakers

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Have you ever been to Agloe, New York? You might not have, considering it was made up to throw fake map makers off. Thing is, the (fake) place has taken on a life of its own, and is just one of many examples of such creations implemented to complicate the work of evil-doers. Take Argleton, […]

9 Historical Mysteries Solved by Astronomy

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Throughout history there have been strange moments that have happened that have been ensconced in mystery since they were first spoken of in hushed stories passed down from generation to generation. Did the first marathon runner really drop dead? Could Mary Shelley’s griping origin story for Frankenstein actually be true? While we may scoff at […]

Halloween Decorating Project: In Praise of the Halloween Turnip and Brazen Heads

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History geeks among us will know that the traditional carved vegetable of the Halloween season was not–as it is commonly seen today–the pumpkin, but rather the humble turnip. While some cite the practice to the legend of Stingy Jack, the mythology behind the turnip goes much farther back into the Celtic age.  According to some […]

A Look Beyond the Turkey: A Brief History of Thankfulness and Harvest

Thanksgiving card from 1900. Public domain. via Wikimedia Commons

As we enter into the hustle and bustle of the approaching holiday season, it’s easy to forget that holidays aren’t made, or bought, or appropriated. On the contrary, they evolve over time. As I’ve seen time and time again, especially when it comes to food, people have a pretty rigid idea of what and what […]

Infographic: Looking for Life on Mars

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We haven’t found any little green men on Mars…yet. But that doesn’t mean we haven’t been looking. Check out this informative and entertaining timeline created by NYU, containing some highlights of man’s past, present, and future search for life on the angry red planet. Really, Tesla?  The aliens are trying to talk to you?  Oh, […]

Five Ways To Geek Up Your Holiday Decorating

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Every year it seems like the lights come out earlier. Returning from Thanksgiving festivities here in the US, we noticed that half of our street was illuminated wheras just days before had been absolutely typical. Bows and lights and garlands are just the beginning though; some people take their decorations way seriously. It’s not just […]

Five Reasons You Need to Watch The Pillars of the Earth

So you might have noticed I’ve got a little thing for the Middle Ages. Be it Arthur or Charlemagne, Margery Kempe or Marie de France, the period incorrectly referred to the Dark Ages has been a lifelong inspiration for me. In fact, I went through graduate school doing little else than perusing old manuscripts in […]

January 27th: A Great Day in Geek History

Believe it or not, yesterday was a rather important day, and not just because of the big announcement (or the other big announcement). Aside from the hype and the craziness, January 27th is a surprisingly historic day for geeks. Personally, I got a little tired of reading about iPads—and increasingly amused by the bad name […]

Science Uncovers What Cleopatra and Neanderthals Had in Common

Courtesy of BBC news this morning, two particularly interesting stories that mix science, history, and… cosmetics. First up, let’s talk about eyeliner. Yes, eyeliner. There may be no look as timeless and as oft-copied as the Cleopatra eye, made famous in Egyptian art, culture, and mythology. And while it’s certainly aesthetically pleasing (I’m a personal […]

New Research Indicates the Pyramids Weren’t Built the Way You Were Taught

Like many young geeks, when I was a kid I wanted to be an archaeologist–and a paleontologist–when I grew up. Nothing sounded so exciting as discovering ancient cities, unearthing forgotten cultures, and also, if I had the time, naming a dinosaur after myself. Well, I eventually found other career paths, but I still love history […]

Chaucer + Rap = Surprisingly Funny

I saw this video this morning, posted by a few people on Facebook. I had to share. This one goes out to the Summoner, the Miller, the Wife of Bath, and the Monk. There are dozen of reasons to love Chaucer (hilarious stories, sexual innuendo, and fart jokes notwithstanding) but who knew the General Prologue […]