" To read between the lines was easier than to follow the text. "
Henry James

Back in the day


The Battle of Nineveh

The Battle of Nineveh was fought between the Byzantine Empire and the Sassanid Dynasty, the last dynasty of native rulers to reign in Persia. Heraclius, the Byzantine emperor, was able to draw his Persian adversaries onto a favorable battlefield by feigning a retreat, thereby securing victory for his troops. The loss seriously damaged the Sassanids' power. Within decades, the weakened Sassanid dynasty would be toppled by the Arab Conquest. What fate did the Sassanid king suffer after Nineveh?




Spread by the bite of a bloodsucking sand fly, leishmaniasis is a tropical disease caused by parasitic protozoans. The cutaneous form of the disease causes deep, disfiguring lesions at the site of the bite, most of which heal spontaneously months later. The visceral form of the disease—also known as kala-azar—affects the internal organs and is usually fatal. Currently, there is no vaccine that can prevent leishmaniasis. What city is considered the cutaneous leishmaniasis capital of the world?

Born on a day like today


John Jay

Though Jay initially deplored the growing conflict between Britain and its American colonies, he became a staunch supporter of the revolution once it began. He was heavily involved in early US government and urged ratification of the Constitution. He served as the first chief justice of the Supreme Court, among other posts. Today considered one of the "Founding Fathers," Jay once joked that he could travel from Boston to Philadelphia by the light of his burning effigies after he had done what?

Last updated on Wednesday, 12th December 2012

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