The bones of a Red Runt pigeon from Charles Darwin’s study
Bat embryos – Molossus rufus (black mastiff bat) – photographed by Dorit Hockman of Cambridge University, one of the finalists in the Nikon Small World 2012 photomicrography competition
Arp 87 is a stunning pair of interacting galaxies. Stars, gas, and dust flow from the large spiral galaxy, NGC 3808, forming an enveloping arm around its companion. The shapes of both galaxies have been distorted by their gravitational interaction. Arp 87 is located in the constellation of Leo, the Lion, approximately 300 million light-years away from Earth. Arp 87 appears in Arp’s Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies. As also seen in similar interacting galaxies, the corkscrew shape of the tidal material suggests that some stars and gas drawn from the larger galaxy have been caught in the gravitational pull of the smaller one. This image was taken in February 2007 with Hubble’s Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 detector.
Martin van Heemskerk (1498–1574)
The Phlegmatic Temperament: Luna, 1565
Ars magica sive magia naturalis et artificiosa,stupendos et abstrusos effectus, virtutes, et secreta in elementis, gemmis, lapidibus, herbis, et animalibus secundum certas astrorum ac constellationum figuras et sigilla, horasque planetarias exhibens: antehac numquam visa, cognitave ; cui praeit Magia superstitiosa de daemonum variis generibus, faunis, satyris, lamiis et spectris.
Un libro raro en la sala de libros raros, Monsanto Bldg., Jardín Botánico de Missouri, St. Louis
One of the world’s rarest and oldest maps went on display at the Library of Congress in Washington. It was made in 1602 by Italian priest Matteo Ricci, who visited China in the 1500s and taught the Chinese about the existence of “the Americas.” The emperor asked him to make a map. The result is an enormous map, on five-foot-tall panels of rice paper, with China at the center. It’s the first map in Chinese to show the land we now call North and South America.
Livre de la Vigne nostre Seigneur. France, c. 1450-1470
Judas’ soul being carried off by a demon. from the ‘Holkham Bible Picture Book.’ c. 1327-1335
from the ‘Holkham Bible Picture Book’. c. 1327-1335
Title-page to Blaise Pascal, ‘Les provinciales, or, The mysterie of Jesuitisme’ (London, J.G. for R. Royston, 1657), altered from title-page to Hobbes’s ‘Philosophical rudiments concerning government and civill society’ (same imprint details); title on plinth in centre, on which is a veiled figure holding a cross and flaming heart, representing ‘Religion’; bottom left, a queen, and bottom right, a female with long staff; bottom centre, portrait of Thomas Hobbes, half length, wearing cap and collar; below portrait, inscription in Greek.
Print made by Robert Vaughan
The British Museum