" The fatal metaphor of progress, which means leaving things behind us, has utterly obscured the real idea of growth, which means leaving things inside us. "
Gilbert Chesterton

Back in the day


Frederick Barbarossa Elected King of the Germans

Frederick Barbarossa was elected King of Germany in 1152 and crowned Holy Roman Emperor in 1155. Shortly thereafter, an apparent misunderstanding with Pope Adrian IV led Frederick to mount military operations against Italy and install an antipope in opposition to Adrian's successor. The schism continued for some time, but Frederick and the Catholic pontiff ultimately reconciled. According to scholars, what factors may have contributed to Frederick's drowning death in the shallow Saleph River?



Synesthesia; Hearing Colors and Tasting Sounds

Synesthesia is a condition in which one type of sensory stimulus evokes sensations associated with a different sense, as when hearing a sound stimulates the visualization of a color. Approximately 1 in 2,000 people have the condition, and most of those affected are female. Synesthesia can result in a number of cross-sensory experiences, but it most commonly manifests as a grapheme-color interchange. Which Russian painter, regarded by some as the originator of abstract art, had synesthesia?

Born on a day like today


Henry the Navigator

Henry the Navigator, a Portuguese prince, figured strongly in Portugal's early development as a colonial empire. Though not a navigator himself, Henry was a great patron of exploration and is credited with establishing a school for navigators and encouraging the study of navigational instruments and cartography. Under his patronage, Portuguese sailors explored and colonized Madeira, the Cape Verde Islands, and the Azores. How did Henry justify Portugal's involvement in the African slave trade?

Last updated on Tuesday, 4th March 2008

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