" Elegance is inferior to virtue. "
Mary Shelley

Back in the day


Sally Ride Returns to Earth

Ride is a former astronaut and the first American woman to reach outer space. Ride was a nationally-ranked tennis player in high school before attending Stanford University for her bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees. In 1983, Ride took part in her first space shuttle mission, serving as a crewmember on board the Challenger. Ride later served on the panels that investigated the Challenger and Columbia shuttle disasters. How many total hours has she spent in space?



Solomonic Columns

Characterized by their corkscrew-like shaft, Solomonic columns draw their name from the Biblical description of the two columns that famously flanked the entrance to the Temple of Solomon in Jerusalem, built in the 10th c BCE. According to tradition, that temple was the source of a set of columns brought to Rome by Constantine the Great in the 4th c CE for the original St. Peter's Basilica, where several of the pillars still remain. These columns are now believed to have originally stood where?

Born on a day like today


Jack Dempsey

Born in Manassa, Colorado, Dempsey was an American boxer and one of the heavyweight division's greatest champions. Nicknamed the "Manassa Mauler," he emerged from fights on saloon floors to seal his slugging reputation in his first title fight by knocking down the gigantic champion, Jess Willard, seven times in the first three minutes. Dempsey went on to fight for nearly 20 years and amassed more than 60 wins and 50 knockouts. What was the "Battle of the Long Count"?

Last updated on Tuesday, 24th June 2008

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