No pictures of Anna herself seem to exist, so have some images of her parents, Alexios I Komnenos and Eirene (Irene) Doukaina instead. Also, is it just me or does Alexios look really grumpy?
[Alexios I, 11th century, Image Source]
[Coin with the image of Christ on one side and Eirene…
The Vatican’s Precious Manuscripts Go Online
Almost 600 years after Pope Nicholas V founded the Vatican Apostolic Library, the Holy See is now turning to 50 experts, five scanners and a Japanese IT firm to digitize millions of pages from its priceless manuscripts, opening them to the broader public for the first time.
On the first day of April historian community lost Jacques Le Goff. He died in Paris, aged 90.
Over a long and influential career in academia and public broadcasting, Le Goff transformed views of the middle ages from a dark and backward time to a period that laid the foundations for modern western civilisation.
He was a leading proponent of “new history” – the shift in historical research from emphasis on political figures and events to mentality and anthropology.
I am sad that I didn’t hear about this….I love Jacques Le Goff.
Please visit me at Emerald City Comiccon, table 1214, this weekend! I will have had crumpets & am thus likely to be in good spirits.
I love this guy’s work.
A pre-inca tomb has been found in Arequipa, in the building where Peruvian writer, Mario Vargas Llosa was born. After four days of investigation, the Ministry of Culture has confirmed that the remains date back to the Churajón culture.
The tomb is 1.5 m deep and contains four ceramic pots…
Eilmer of Malmesbury was an 11th-century English Benedictine monk best known for his early attempt at a gliding flight using wings.
He is known to have written on astrology. All that is known of him is written by the eminent medieval historian William of Malmesbury in about 1125. In his words:
He was a man learned for those times, of ripe old age, and in his early youth had hazarded a deed of remarkable boldness. He had by some means, I scarcely know what, fastened wings to his hands and feet so that, mistaking fable for truth, he might fly like Daedalus, and, collecting the breeze upon the summit of a tower, flew for more than a furlong [201 metres]. But agitated by the violence of the wind and the swirling of air, as well as by the awareness of his rash attempt, he fell, broke both his legs and was lame ever after. He used to relate as the cause of his failure, his forgetting to provide himself a tail.
Eilmer typified the inquisitive spirit of medieval enthusiasts who developed small drawstring toy helicopters, windmills, and sophisticated sails for boats. Church artists increasingly showed angels with ever more accurate depictions of bird-like wings. This led to a general acceptance that air was something that could be “worked.” Flying was thus not magical, but could be attained by physical effort and human reasoning.
image: (x) Detail from Edwardian Stained glass in Malmesbury Abbey, Wiltshire. This image is the work of Bell & Co of Bristol. It dates from 1921.