Monthly Archives: May 2017

Leonhart Fuchs and his Famous Herbal Book

Leonhart Fuchs and his Famous Herbal Book

On May 10, 1566, German Botanist Leonhart Fuchs passed away. Fuchs is best known for authoring a large book about plants and their uses as medicines, i.e. a Herbal Book, published in 1542 in Latin, with about 500 accurate and detailed drawings of plants printed from woodcuts. Leonhart Fuchs – Early Years Leonhart Fuchs was born in Wemding, near Donauwörth, Swabia, the son of the mayor of Wemding, Hans Fuchs († 1505). After…
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Howard Carter and the Tomb of Tutankhamun

Howard Carter and the Tomb of Tutankhamun

On May 9, 1874, English archaeologist and Egyptologist Howard Carter was born. Carter became world-famous after discovering the intact tomb of the 18th Dynasty Pharaoh, Tutankhamun in November 1922. We’ve had already featured Tutankhamun [1] as well as the discovery of the tomb [2] here at SciHi blog. Time to draw our attention to the egyptologist Howard Carter. “Here before us was sufficient evidence to show that it really was an entrance…
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Andrew Sherratt and the Secondary Products Revolution

Andrew Sherratt and the Secondary Products Revolution

On May 8, 1946, English archaeologist Andrew Sherratt was born. Sherratt was one of the most influential archaeologists of his generation. He was best known for the idea of the Secondary Products Revolution, which involves a widespread and broadly contemporaneous set of innovations in Old World farming, such as e.g. the exploitation of milk, wool, traction (the use of animals to drag ploughs in agriculture) as well as riding and pack transport. Andrew…
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Hagia Sophia of Constantinople

Hagia Sophia of Constantinople

On May 7, 558, the main dome of Hagia Sophia, Church of the Holy Wisdom and seat of the Orthodox patriarch of Constantinople, collapsed completely during an earthquake. Hagia Sophia is one of the greatest surviving examples of Byzantine architecture. Emperor Justinian I himself had overseen the completion of the greatest cathedral ever built up to that time, and it was to remain the largest cathedral for 1,000 years up until the…
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Ferdinand Freiherr von Richthofen and the Silk Road

Ferdinand Freiherr von Richthofen and the Silk Road

On May 5, 1833, German traveller, geographer, and scientist Ferdinand Freiherr von Richthofen was born. Von Richthofen is noted for coining the terms “Seidenstraße” and “Seidenstraßen” = “Silk Road(s)” or “Silk Route(s)” in 1877. He also standardized the practices of chorography and chorology. Richthofen and the Alpine Geology Ferdinand von Richthofen was born in Carlsruhe, Prussian Silesia, to Karl Richthofen and his wife Ferdinande. He attended the Catholic Gymnasium in Breslau (today…
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The Instruments of Jean-Charles de Borda

The Instruments of Jean-Charles de Borda

On May 4, 1733, French mathematician, physicist, political scientist, and sailor Jean-Charles de Borda was born. De Borda is noted for his studies of fluid mechanics and his development of instruments for navigation and geodesy, the study of the size and shape of the Earth. He is one of 72 scientists commemorated by plaques on the Eiffel tower. From Latin and Greek to Mathematics and Physics Jean-Charles de Borda grew up in Dax, France,…
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The Native American studies of Horatio Hale

The Native American studies of Horatio Hale

On May 3, 1817, American-Canadian ethnologist, philologist and businessman Horatio Hale was born. Hale studied language as a key for classifying ancient peoples and being able to trace their migrations. He was the first to discover that the Tutelo language of Virginia belonged to the Siouan family, and to identify the Cherokee language as a member of the Iroquoian family of languages. Horatio Hale – Early Years Horatio Hale was born as…
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Dr. Spock’s Famous Book on Child Care

Dr. Spock’s Famous Book on Child Care

On May 2, 1903, American pediatrician Benjamin McLane Spock was born. Spock‘s book Baby and Child Care, published in 1946, is one of the best-sellers of all time. The book‘s premise to mothers is that “you know more than you think you do.” It influenced generations of parents worldwide. “Don’t be afraid to trust your own common sense..[]..What good mothers and fathers instinctively feel like doing for their babies is usually best.”…
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The BASIC Programming Language

The BASIC Programming Language

On May 1st, 1964, the original BASIC programming language was released by John Kemeny and Thomas Kurtz, implemented under their direction by a team of Dartmouth College students in New Hampshire. Their initial goal was to enable students in fields other than science and mathematics to use computers. At the time, nearly all use of computers required writing custom software, which was something only scientists and mathematicians tended to learn. Actually, BASIC also was…
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