The Bizarre Origin Behind Partridge Family 2200 A.D.

 




Hanna-Barbera tried to pitch a similar versions for the Jetsons for the 1974 Saturday Morning season (a year after the Jetsons returned), with Elroy now being a teenager, Judy a young reporter and Astro’s son their dog.

When they pitched it to CBS, they loved the idea, but thought that it would do better if the Jetsons characters were, instead, the Partridge Family

It is one of the very rare Saturday Morning cartoon series to be canceled midseason (since the episodes are almost always all completed before a cartoon season begins, you have to be REALLY bad for the network to just eat the cost – the unaired episodes later aired as part of a Flintstones variety hour).

Via Messy Nessy Found here.

In 1959, police were called to a segregated library when a 9 year-old African American boy trying to check out books refused to leave

 





The boy, Ronald McNair, went on to get a PhD in Physics from MIT and became an astronaut. Sadly, McNair died during the launch of the Space Shuttle Challenger in 1986. The library that refused to lend him books is now named after him.



France is sending a second Statue of Liberty to the US

 


A lot of us, even the French, tend to forget that one of America’s most iconic symbols was a gift from the France as a memorial to their independence, 100 years after the American Revolution. The statue was built in Paris and fully funded by the French people– everyone from wealthy businessmen to schoolchildren chipped in to help raise funds for it.

Discover more about this here.

New Yorkers have a surprise gift to look forward to for this Independence Day: a second Statue of Liberty sent by France. This new bronze statue, nicknamed the “little sister,” is one-sixteenth the size of the world-famous one that stands on Liberty Island. On Monday, during a special ceremony, the smaller sibling was lifted and loaded into a special container at the National Museum of Arts and Crafts (CNAM) in central Paris, where it has been installed since 2011 in the museum’s garden. It will be erected on Ellis Island, just across the water from the original, from July 1 to July 5.

Japanese Students Send Letters on Tree Leaves and Actually Get Them Delivered


JAPANESE MAIL CARRIERS APPARENTLY DID NOT MIND DELIVERING LETTERS WRITTEN ON LEAVES. PHOTOS: COURTESY OF THE TARAYOU TREE PROJECT (LEFT); HAJIME ISHIKAWA

The students at Keio University have been mailing leaves of Ilex latifolia, a species of holly native to Japan and China, since April as part of a class project that spans science and history. Also known as tarayou … letters written on tarayou leaves go as far back as the Heian period (794-1185) and are believed to be the first postcards in Japan.

A group of university students in Tokyo has been writing letters on tree leaves and managing to get them delivered by the country’s renowned postal service with nothing more than a stamp.

The students at Keio University have been mailing leaves of Ilex latifolia, a species of holly native to Japan and China, since April as part of a class project that spans science and history.

Maho Omura, a first-year student in the group, came across the leaf of Ilex latifolia, also known as tarayou. Letters written on tarayou leaves go as far back as the Heian period (794-1185) and are believed to be the first postcards in Japan.


THIS LEAF READS: "THANK YOU, ALWAYS <3 I LOVE YOU. LET'S STAY TOGETHER, NOW AND FOREVER." PHOTO: COURTESY OF THE TARAYOU TREE PROJECT

Unlike most other tree leaves, the back of a tarayou leaf can be scratched to leave permanent black etchings. Once scratched, the surface of the leaf undergoes a Maillard reaction, the same chemical process that gives a steak or a loaf of bread its brown crust

“People said it looks like something from My Neighbor Totoro,” Mio Hirose, one of the students behind the project, told VICE World News, referring to the popular 1988 Japanese animated fantasy film.

Read more


Evolution of Dance

 




From the robot to the chicken dance to the twist (but curiously stopping short of the Macarena), inspirational comedian Jud Laipply does it all in this 6-min. dance sequence. Moving seamlessly between eras, Laipply has been viewed more than 138 million times for a reason — his video triggers nostalgia in the happiest of ways. We can all remember, begrudgingly or not, mimicking Vanilla Ice or the cast of Grease at one time or another, though maybe not with Laipply's infectious enthusiasm.

The most impressive (concept) buildings out there. [via Nina Reznick]

 Semi-Destroyed In 1979 By The Earthquake In Albania. Rebuilt Two Years Ago

Semi-Destroyed In 1979 By The Earthquake In Albania. Rebuilt Two Years Ago

Mrizi-i-Zanave

The Russian Ministry Of Agriculture, In Kazanreddit.com


The Art Nouveau ‘Gran Hotel Ciudad De México’, 1899, By French Architect, Jacques Grüber

imaLilT-pot

This Spiral Staircase Carved From A Single Tree In 1851 - Located In Lednice Castle, Czech Republic


This Spiral Staircase Carved From A Single Tree In 1851 - Located In Lednice Castle, Czech Republic

imaLilT-pot

Wisteria Blossoms Surrounding The Entrance Of A Victorian Townhouse In San Francisco



Wisteria Blossoms Surrounding The Entrance Of A Victorian Townhouse In San Francisco

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Zhongshuge Bookstore In Chengdu, China



Zhongshuge Bookstore In Chengdu, China

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A Spiral Staircase Designed By Leonardo Da Vinci In The Year 1516

Headstones with unusual stories to tell: The soldier whose beer was too weak



In Winchester, there is a grave which pays homage to a 26-year-old grenadier in the North Regiment of the Hants Militia. Thomas Thetcher died after drinking contaminated small (weak) beer when he was hot.

Before the invention of modern sanitation, people would drink small beer when fresh water was unavailable. This was because the alcohol was toxic to water-borne pathogens.

However, it was not enough to prevent Thetcher catching a fever and dying.

Following his death in 1764, his comrades arranged for a jocular headstone inscription warning of the dangers of drink. It read:

Here sleeps in peace a Hampshire Grenadier,

Who caught his death by drinking cold small beer,

Soldiers be wise from his untimely fall

And when ye're hot drink strong or none at all.

In 1918, the tombstone caught the attention of a young American soldier called Bill Wilson, who was camped nearby with his US Army unit.

Twenty-one years later, following a battle with alcoholism, he founded Alcoholics Anonymous and in 1939 published a book about his experience.

In it he claimed the gravestone had been an "ominous warning which I failed to heed", and printed the first two lines of the verse in the front of his book.

However, it appears he misunderstood the headstone, as he missed out the crucial advice about only drinking strong beer.

On 12 May - the anniversary of Thetcher's death - people gather at the grave to drink (strong) beer and raise a glass to the grenadier.

Read more 

A Tribute to the Printer Aldus Manutius, and the Roots of the Paperback [via Doug Fetterly]


CURIOUS strollers in early-16th-century Venice might have paused by the shop of the great printer Aldus Manutius only to be scared off by a stern warning posted over the door.
“Whoever you are, Aldus asks you again and again what it is you want from him,” it read. “State your business briefly, and then immediately go away.”

To state the current business at hand briefly, Aldus is the subject of a new exhibition commemorating the 500th anniversary of his death — and the birth of reading as we know it.

Aldus has attracted some pop-culture attention in recent years, at least among those with a geekish taste for printing history. The novel “The Rule of Four” gave his most famous book, the enigmatic “Hypnerotomachia Poliphili,” an upmarket “Da Vinci Code” treatment in 2004. There was also Robin Sloan’s 2012 best seller, “Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore,” which turned Aldus into the founder of a shadowy secret society headed for an apocalyptic showdown with Google.

The exhibition that opened this week at the Grolier Club in Manhattan, “Aldus Manutius: A Legacy More Lasting Than Bronze,” gathers nearly 150 Aldines, as books from the press Aldus founded in Venice in 1494 are known, for a more sober tribute. Gutenberg may have invented the movable-type printing press, used to create his monumental Bibles. But anyone who has ever sat in a cafe, or in the bath, with a paperback owes a debt to Aldus and the small, cleanly designed editions of the secular classics he called libelli portatiles, or portable little books.
“It’s become a cliché to call them the forerunners of the Penguin Classics,” G. Scott Clemons, the president of the Grolier Club, said during a recent tour of the installation in progress. “But the concept of personal reading is in some ways directly traceable to the innovations of Aldus’s portable library.”

The exhibition, organized by Mr. Clemons and H. George Fletcher, a former curator of rare books at the New York Public Library and the Morgan Library, is a gallery of bragging rights. Aldus was the first to print Aristotle, Thucydides, Herodotus and Sophocles, among others in the Greek canon. He was possibly the first printer to compare manuscripts to arrive at the most reliable text. He was the first to use italic type. He was the first to use the semicolon in its modern sense.

And then there were the unwitting firsts, like what may be the earliest known version of “This page left intentionally blank,” preserved in a 1513 edition of the Greek orators included in the show, along with instructions to the binder to remove the extra leaf.

“He printed the instructions in Latin and Greek,” Mr. Clemons said. “But of course bookbinders couldn’t read Latin or Greek.”

Aldus, born in the Papal States around 1452, trained as a humanist scholar and worked as a tutor in aristocratic households before taking up printing in the 1490s. It was a moment of upheaval in reading roughly equivalent to our own digitally disrupted age. And Venice was the Silicon Valley of printing, home to dozens of shops locked in cutthroat competition.

The Aldine Press, in its start-up phase, emphasized Greek and Latin lexicons and grammar manuals. In 1495, Aldus began publishing the first printed edition of Aristotle. In 1501, he released the first of his small octavo editions of the classics, books “that could be held in the hand and learned by heart (not to speak of being read) by everyone,” as he later wrote. The show includes 20 libelli portatiles, all bearing Aldus’s printer’s mark, a dolphin curled around an anchor. (The colophon is still used today by Doubleday.) Some of the books were treated as treasures, and customized with magnificent decoration that harked back to the tradition of illuminated manuscripts. Others were workaday volumes, filled with marginal scribbles.

The exhibition also includes examples of Aldus’s larger-format work, including the “Hypnerotomachia Poliphili” (1499), sometimes said to be the most beautiful — and the most unreadable — book ever printed.
The book, a densely allegorical erotic love story attributed to Francesco Colonna, is celebrated for its integration of gracefully shaped typography and elegant woodcuts. But visitors to the Grolier would be forgiven for letting their eyes go straight to the famously excited ithyphallic (to use the scholarly term) god Priapus standing at attention, as it were. The book is displayed cracked open a modest halfway to that page, directly across the room from a 1547 medical encyclopedia open to a passage discussing the uses of cannabis.

“We wanted the show to have both sex and drugs,” Mr. Clemons explained.

Most of Aldus’s contributions to the art of printing are more subtle, like that first italic typeface, which he created with the type cutter Francesco Griffo, a shadowy fellow who broke with Aldus acrimoniously and then slugged a man to death with an iron bar before reputedly meeting his own demise at the end of a hangman’s rope. Italics, which were intended to mimic the humanist handwriting of the day, first appeared in a modest five words in a 1500 edition of the letters of St. Catherine and soon spread to other Aldines, and beyond.

And then there was the roman typeface devised for a 1496 book by the humanist scholar Pietro Bembo — the inspiration for the modern font Bembo, still treasured by book designers for its grace and readability.
“The book itself is almost frivolous,” Mr. Clemons said of the text, which recounts a trip to Mount Etna. “But it launched that very modern typeface.”

The libelli portatiles also attracted less flattering imitations. Aldus, who had secured special printing privileges from the Vatican, was plagued by counterfeiters, despite the warnings on his title pages that those who made unauthorized copies would be excommunicated.

Things got so bad that in 1503 he printed a broadside warning consumers of the telltale marks of fake Aldines, including specific textual errors, low-quality paper with “a heavy odor” and typography that exuded, as he put it, a sort of “Gallicitas,” or “Frenchiness.” (Many counterfeits came from Lyon.)


“The counterfeiters just said, ‘Thank you very much,’ corrected their errors, and kept printing fakes,” Mr. Clemons said.
While putting together the show, Mr. Clemons identified one previously unknown counterfeit, a 1501 Virgil printed on vellum and held by Princeton University. “It was immediately obvious,” Mr. Clemons said. “It was Frenchy.”
Aldus died in 1515, and the press was taken over by his father-in-law and then by his son Paulus. The center of printing had begun migrating north, but the press continued to produce some important editions, including the first printed Greek Bible, the Septuagint, in 1518, and the official proceedings of the Council of Trent.

Aldus’s grandson, known as Aldus the Younger, took sole control in 1574, but “the gene pool had run very shallow,” Mr. Fletcher said.

By 1579, Aldines carried a list of still-available titles printed in the back. “You can almost imagine him looking over his shoulder at the unsold books piling up,” Mr. Clemons said.

In a last-ditch effort to save the press, Aldus the Younger accepted a commission from Pope Sixtus V for a new Latin Bible, only to produce a rush job so riddled with errors — about 4,900, Mr. Fletcher noted grimly — that it was suppressed.

“Sixtus died, and the new pope said, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me,’ ” Mr. Fletcher said. (The book, which includes carefully pasted-in printed corrections, is now among the rarer Aldines.)

The press closed for good in 1597. But Aldines, which survive in the tens of thousands, have exerted an unflagging hold on collectors, from Jean Grolier, the Renaissance bibliophile for whom the club is named, to the two curators, whose personal loans make up the bulk of the show.

Mr. Clemons, a managing partner at the financial firm Brown Brothers Harriman, bought the first of the roughly 1,000 Aldines in his collection while an undergraduate classics major. “It may now finally be worth what I paid,” he joked.

Mr. Fletcher, who acquired the first of his 125 Aldines when he was 16, summed up their allure with what might be called Aldine understatement.

“Aldus was a person with a strong aesthetic sense who was also able to work with common sense,” he said. “This is an almost completely unknown phenomenon, even today.”

Reposted From The New York Times

 

The last of the Samurai: Beautiful hand-colored photographs of the warriors and their courtesans

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When photographer Felice Beato arrived in Japan in 1863, he found the country in the midst of civil war. After spending over two hundred years in seclusion, Japan was being forced by the Americans—under a mission led by Commodore Matthew C. Perry—to expand its trade with the west. The country was divided between the Tokugawa Shogunate in Edo and the Imperial Court based in Kyoto. Over the next decade, a period known as the Bakumatsu, Japan was riven as the Imperial order gradually took control. The key moment came when the samurai of the Chōshū and Satsuma provinces defeated the Shogunate in 1867, which led to the restoration of imperial rule under Emperor Meiji.
 Beato was an Anglo-Italian, born in Venice in 1832, and raised in the British protectorate of Corfu. He learnt his trade under the renowned photographic pioneer James Robertson, with whom he traveled to Constantinople documenting many British imperial wars fought in Crimea, India and China. Beato’s skill saw him (along with his brother Antonio) hailed as one of the century’s leading photojournalists.
In 1862, Beato sold most of his photographic work and invested the money in the London Stock Exchange, where it was quickly lost. The following year, he decided to quit England and start out on a new adventure, this time to Japan. On his arrival in Yokohama, Beato set-up a business with English artist Charles Wirgman, who drew sketches and engravings based on Beato’s photographs. Travel was dangerous in Japan, with many of the Shogunate samurai warriors killing westerners—in Edo the American legation was burned to the ground and westerners threatened with death. On one occasion, Beato escaped such a fate after declining a tour of Kamakura with two Imperial officers, who happened across two masterless samurais (or ronin) and were beheaded. However, through his contacts in the military, Beato did manage to travel to many of the secluded areas of the country, where he documented the last years of feudal Japan.

Among his first photographs were the portraits of the Satsuma samurais, who happily posed for him. In one group portrait, four samurais symbolically show their strength and ambition by presenting themselves with one standing samurai holding a red book of English literature and one seated with an unsheathed knife—highlighting their hold on western knowledge and their strength in Japanese tradition. As travel became restricted because of the civil war, Beato opened a studio back in Yokohama, where he photographed many samurai warriors and their courtesans.

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H/T the Guardian