Your weekly digest of all the best of
Internet history of science, technology and medicine
Editor in Chief: The Ghost of William Whewell
Monday 25 August 2014
We can hardly believe it ourselves but this is the tenth edition of Whewell’s Gazette your weekly digest of the best in the histories of science, technology and medicine, so we are dedicating this edition to Pythagoras and the Pythagoreans. You may ask yourself why we are doing this.
The Pythagoreans who are considered to be one of the founders of Western science were great believers in numerology, who considered the natural numbers to be the building blocks of the cosmos and for them the number ten was the most special number in their metaphysical beliefs.
Ten was known as the Tetraktys (meaning four) by the Pythagorean, being the sum of the first four natural numbers 1+2+3+4 = 10 and displayed as a triangular number.
It had many interpretations. One is a point or zero dimensions, two is two points forming a straight line or one dimension, three is three points forming a triangle or two dimensions and four is four points forming a tetrahedron or three dimensions. For the Pythagoreans there were ten celestial bodies: the fixed stars, the seven planets (Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn), the Earth and Antichthon (the counter-earth). The Earth and Anthichthon revolve around the Central Fire, a theory that led Copernicus to erroneously attribute heliocentricity to the Pythagoreans, which in turn led Copernican being referred to as Pythagoreans in the Early Modern Period.
Following a lively discussion on Twitter the editorial team of Whewell’s Gazette have decided to replace the hash tag tape worm #histsci, #histtech & #histmed with the single hash tag #histSTM and we hope that all historians of science, medicine and technology will follow our example and adopt this space and character saving device in future.
ON THE WEB BLOGS AND WEBSITES:
Birthdays of the Week: H. P. Lovecraft! (20 August 1890)
Letters from Gondwana: Halloween Special: Lovecraft and the Mountains of Madness
The Dynamic Earth: At the Orogen of Madness
Haeckel’s Kunstformen der Natur (1904), plate 90: Cystoidea. From Wikimedia Commons
The Devil’s Exercise Yard: “Don’t mention the war.” – some thoughts on H.P. Lovecraft and race
Georges Cuvier 23 August 1769
The Embryo Project: Georges Cuvier (1769-1832)
PHYSICS & ASTRONOMY:
Voices of the Manhattan Project: Podcast: Glen Seaborg’s Interview
Wiener Zeitung: Wiener Physiker Walter Thirring verstorben
Pat’s Blog: Why there are seven colours in the rainbow
Voices of the Manhattan Project: Podcast: Robert Hayes’s Interview
EXPLORATION and CARTOGRAPHY:
Halley’s Log: Halley and Longitude
The New Yorker: The Real “Knick”
BBC Travel: New York City’s most morbid museum
The Prague Revue: The Plague in Rhyme (Or Not)
New York Academy of Medicine: The Fabrica of Andreas Vesalius: Object of the Month
New York Academy of Medicine: Electrification
Notches: (re)marks on the history of sexuality: ‘A Tempory Member’: ‘Hermaphrodites’ and Sexual Identity in Early Modern Russia
About.com: Chemistry: Who Invented the Periodic Table?
Conciatore: Neri’s Cabinet #2
EARTH & LIFE SCIENCES:
Public Domain Review: The Bestarium of Aloys Zötl (1831–1887)
Public Domain Review: Birds from The Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahama Islands (1754)
Public Domain Review: Redressing the Balance: Levinus Vincent’s Wonder Theatre of Nature
Making Science Public: Fermenting thought: A new look at synthetic biology
History Matters: Old Leaves and New: From Gloucestershire Tobacco to Albanian Pot
Geological Society of London Blog: A new version of Sopwith’s Buckland portrait
Embryo Project: Hwang Woo-suk’s Use of Human Eggs for Research 2002-2005
The Copenhagen Post: Danish museum finds lost Charles Darwin treasure
Houghton Library Blog: The Poet as Naturalist: Thomas Grey’s copy of Linnaeus’ Systema Naturae
History of Geology: Pompeii – a Geological Movie-Review: Introducing the Main Character
The Daguerreian Society: The Daguerreian Process: A Description
Computer History Museum: Who Invented the IC?
Atlas Obscura: Horologium Mirabile Lundense
META:- HISTORIOGRAPHY, THEORY, RESOURCES and OTHER:
Guardian: Podcast: The science of the invisible
Evolving Thoughts: Some more videos: John Wilkins shorts on philosophy of science
The Public Domain Review: Highlights from Folger Shakespeare Library’s Release of almost 80 000 Images
The Times of India: IIEST plans to marry arts and science
The Royal Society: The Repository: A proverb in the hand…
London Historians’ Blog: Gresham, the Great Golden Grasshopper
The Sloane Letters Blog: How to Build a Universal Collection, or Nicknackatory:
Compass Wallah: The Astronomer & the Chessboard: Reading List
The Creativity Post: Science Is Not About Certainty
Conciatore: Don Giovanni
The Atlantic: Who has the right to pain relief?
James Ungureanu: Victorian Scientific Naturalism
James Ungureanu: The Age of Scientific Naturalism
Guardian: Review: Thatcher and Hodgkin: A personal and political chemistry?
Rachel Carson Center: Turku Book Award #histenv
The Royal Institution: Join the Ri
Cambridge University Press: New Book: Daryn Lehoux, What Did the Romans Know? : An Inquiry into Science and Worldmaking
Queen Mary University of London: CfP: Being Modern: Science and Culture in the early 20thcentury Institute of Historical Research, London 22-24 April 2015
National Maritime Museum: The Whale: an exploration 20 September
Bloomsbury History: New Book: A History of Environmentalism
ChoM News: Marian Cabot Putnam Papers Open for Research
Leeds University –Faculty of Arts: Shaping the Trading Zone: Bringing Aesthetics and Philosophy of Science Together 5–6 September 2014
Irish History Podcasts: Book Project Blog: 1348 A Medieval Apocalypse The Black Death in Ireland
LOOKING FOR WORK?
Rochester Institute of Technology: Assistant Professor – Sociocultural Context of Science and Technology
UCL: STS Vacancies
Science Europe: Vacancy Notice: Senior Scientific Officer (Humanities) pdf