Athanasius Kircher was a German Jesuit scholar who published around
40 works in the 17th century, most in the fields of oriental studies,
geology and medicine. He made an early study of Egyptian hieroglyphs.
He was ahead of his time in proposing that the plague was caused by
an infectious microorganism and in suggesting effective measures to
prevent the spread of the disease. A scientific star in his day,
towards the end of his life he was eclipsed by the rationalism of
Ren� Descartes and others. In the late 20th century, however, the
aesthetic qualities of his work have again begun to be appreciated.
He has been described by one scholar, Edward Schmidt, as "the last
Read the rest of this article:
Today's selected anniversaries:
1778 In the Hawaiian Islands, Captain James Cook became the
first European to discover Maui.
1917 The National Hockey League was formed with its first six
1922 Howard Carter and Lord Carnarvon became the first people to
enter the tomb of Egyptian King Tutankhamun in over 3000
1950 Battle of Chosin Reservoir: Chinese volunteers moved into
North Korea and launched a massive counterattack against
South Korean and United States armed forces, ending any
thought of a quick end to the Korean War.
Wikiquote of the day:
"Show respect to all people and grovel to none. When you arise in
the morning give thanks for the food and for the joy of living. If
you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in
yourself. Abuse no one and no thing, for abuse turns the wise ones
to fools and robs the spirit of its vision." ~ Tecumseh