The late 19th and early 20th centuries saw many feminist utopias that portrayed a society run by women: by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Irene Clyde, former New Zealand prime minister Julius Vogel, and the influential Bangladeshi author Begum Rokeya.
The famed Romantic poet Thomas Gray wrote a verse about his friend’s cat drowning in a goldfish bowl. [2 of 2]
Cat poetry has a long history: Christopher Smart wrote a Romantic religious poem featuring his cat Jeoffry while confined in a mental asylum in the 1760s. [1 of 2]
The escape artist Harry Houdini and the author H. P. Lovecraft collaborated on a “true” Egyptian horror story.
Christian Bök’s 2001 anthology Eunoia contains five chapters that each use just one of the five vowels.
Sarah Josepha Hale published “Mary had a Little Lamb” in 1830. Forty-six years later, Mary Tyler claimed to be the original Mary.
The Doubting Antiquity School were sceptics of ancient Chinese texts’ historical veracity… until the oracle bones were deciphered.
The 19th century Scottish author Emily Gerard collected local legends about a school of black magic high in the mountains of Transylvania.
At the same time she was writing the novel Little Women, Louisa May Alcott also wrote one of the first stories to feature an Egyptian mummy’s curse.
People suffering from Uncombable Hair Syndrome have silvery hair that resists all attempts to comb, brush, or otherwise groom it.
What do the bicycle, Marmite, Mormonism, and Frankenstein have in common? A volcano in Indonesia.
Twenty-nine chapters of the Quran begin with short sequences of Arabic letters. We’re not actually certain what these “mysterious letters” mean.
In 1931 fourteen members of writers’ collective the Detection Club – including Agatha Christie, Dorothy Sayers, G. K. Chesterton, and Ronald Knox – wrote a mystery novel together… one chapter each.
In 1929 Ronald Knox codified the ten rules that all detective fiction should follow.
Some gardens grow only the plants mentioned in either the Bible or the works of Shakespeare.
The Asterix comics are notorious for obscure puns, but the most obscure may be the one used in Asterix and Cleopatra.