Music notation gives you a record of exactly how to play a piece of music. But how do you write a record of a dance?
Almost the entire population of Whittier, Alaska, lives in a single building.
Was the word “orange” first applied to the colour or the fruit? Was “Turkey” first a bird or a country? Was “duck” first an action or an animal? “Organ” the instrument or “organ” the body part?
During World War II, around 7000 Allied pilots and soldiers stranded behind enemy lines were smuggled back to the United Kingdom via a secret network of escape routes. [2 of 2]
How do you solve Zeno’s paradoxes of motion? If you’re Diogenes the Cynic, you walk it off. [1 of 2]
A stand of trees dead for six hundred years stick out of the Namib Desert in the claypan called the Deadvlei.
The famous legal phrase caveat emptor (“let the buyer beware”) entered common law because of a 17th century dispute over a magic bezoar stone.
The Nintendo video game character Mario has gone through a number of name changes throughout the years – including, controversially, whether he has a surname or not.
In apartheid-era South Africa, the government sometimes designated specific people or whole ethnic groups as “honorary whites.” But not everyone accepted it.
From 1939 until 1977, the winner of the annual Trinidad calypso competition was crowned the Calypso King. In 1978 Calypso Rose won the title, so they had to change the name.
When politicians’ historical crimes catch up with them, what happens to their statues?
In 1945 an Air Force bomber crashed into the side of the Empire State Building. An elevator cab carrying Betty Lou Oliver fell 75 floors straight down; she, incredibly, survived.
In October 1977, Ali Maow Maalin was the last person to contract naturally occurring smallpox. He died thirty six years later while coordinating a polio vaccination drive.
“Don’t mess with Texas” is an iconic expression of state pride, but it began as an anti-littering ad campaign.
The Vikings may not have worn horned helmets, but the ancient Greeks had helmets covered in boar tusks and the Dayak of Borneo had helmets covered in fish or pangolin scales.
A 1932 lawsuit attempted to answer the question “who was the real Betty Boop?”