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Peyo Introduces The Smurfs

The Smurfs, or Les Schtroumpfs in French, are a fictional race of small blue creatures that live in a forest somewhere in Europe. The Belgian cartoonist Peyo introduced Smurfs to the world, but English-speakers perhaps know them best from the animated television series from Hanna-Barbera Productions. The Smurf franchise has spawned movies, television shows, figurines, and countless other merchandise. How did Peyo come up with the name for his famous creatures?

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Recapitulation Theory

The now discredited theory of recapitulation, also known as the biogenetic law, states that the stages in an organism's embryonic development and differentiation (ontogeny) correspond to the stages of evolutionary development characteristic to its species (phylogeny). Ernst Haeckel, who proposed the theory in 1866, produced a number of controversial embryo drawings to support this premise. How did he interpret the presence of gill slits in human embryos?

Born on a day like today

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Pelé

In 2000, Pelé was named Footballer of the Century by the international football (soccer) association FIFA. He scored more than 1,000 goals over the course of his career, is the all-time top scorer in the history of the Brazilian national team, and is the only player to win 3 World Cups with his team. Waldemar de Brito, who scouted Pelé, predicted that the then 15-year-old would become "the greatest football player in the world." What did Pelé use for a ball when he was a boy?

Last updated on Tuesday, 23rd October 2007

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