Browsing: Nature

A Brief History On March 15, 1493, Christopher Columbus made his triumphant return from his first voyage to the New World, a momentous occasion in human history and especially noteworthy for the Spanish Crown that he sailed for.  Today we look at 10 such Triumphant Returns, times when a person or a group of people made it back with an air of accomplishment, vindication, or victory, often with a page written in history about that very return.  No significance to the order listed, but feel free to add your own nominations to the list. Questions for Students (and others): What…

A Brief History On February 6, 60 AD, in the Roman city of Pompeii, an unknown graffiti artist noted that the day was “dies Solis” (Sunday), the first known instance of being able to attach a date to a day of the week.  While this bit of graffito is the earliest recorded account of a day and date being matched up, people had been naming days of the week prior to this incident.  The Romans called Sunday “dies Solis” meaning day of the Sun.  Read on for more about what the names of each day of the week mean and…

A Brief History On January 23, 1556, China was rocked by a devastating earthquake that resulted in more human death than any other earthquake in recorded history.  Known as The Shaanxi Earthquake of 1556, the event is estimated to have caused the deaths of 830,000 people.  An area stretching an incredible 520 miles in diameter was largely destroyed, with minor damage extending much further.  By comparison, the second deadliest earthquake in human history was the 1976 Tangshan Earthquake, also in China, that killed somewhere between 250,000 and 700,000 people.  No other earthquakes are reported to have killed as many as…

A Brief History On January 5, 2005, American astronomer Michael E. Brown (CalTech, Princeton,Berkeley ) with fellow astronomers David L. Rabinowitz (Yale University and University of Arizona) and Chad Trujillo (University of Hawaii, Gemini Observatory and Northern Arizona University) were given credit for their discovery of a planetoid they called Eris, at the time, the largest dwarf planet known in the Solar System.  The astronomical team actually discovered Eris in 2003, but its (relatively) small size and distance from Earth required rigid documentation for the discovery to be accepted.  Larger than Pluto, the dwarf planet that used to be considered…

A Brief History On December 27, 1966, the largest cave in the world was discovered in Aquismón, San Luis Potosi, Mexico.  Boasting a single cavern that covers a ground space of 994 feet long by 442 feet wide, the so called Cave of Swallows (alternately called “The Cave of the Swallows”) had been known for many generations by indigenous Huastec people, and was considered “discovered” only when a documented descent into the cave was made by T. R. Evans, Charles Borland and Randy Sterns, the first outsiders known to have visited the cave. Digging Deeper Known as a “pit” type…

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