Posted : 7 years ago

Johannes Gutenberg is often credited as the inventor of the printing press in 1454. However, the Chinese actually printed from movable type in 1040 but later discarding the method. More

Rodin died of frostbite in 1917 when the French government refused him financial aid for a flat, yet they kept his statues warmly housed in museums.

The Statue of Liberty is the largest hammered copper statue in the world.

Vincent van Gogh, the world’s most valued painter, sold only painting in his entire life – to his brother who owned an art gallery. The painting is titled “Red Vineyard at Arles.”

The first illustrated book for children was published in Germany in 1658.

..:: More Great Stuff ::..

Posted : 7 years ago

The world’s longest nonfiction work is The Yongle Dadian, a 10,000-volume encyclopaedia produced by 5,000 scholars during the Ming Dynasty in China 500 years ago.

When Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louvre in 1912, 6 replicas were sold as the original, each at a huge price, in the 3 years before the original was recovered.

The Library of Congress, the largest library in the world, stores 18 million books on approximately 850 km (530 miles) of bookshelves. The collections include 119 million items, 2 million recordings, 12 million photographs, 4 million maps and 53 million manuscripts.

Greek philosopher Aristotle wrote Meteorologica in 350 BC – it remained the standard textbook on weather for 2,000 years.

The first Oxford English Dictionary was published in April 1928, 50 years after it was started. It consisted of 400,000 words and phrases in 10 volumes. The latest edition fills 22,000 pages, includes 33,000 Shakespeare quotations, and is bound in 20 volumes. All of which is available on a single CD.

Posted : 8 years ago

The first novel, called The story of Genji, was written in 1007 by Japanese noble woman, Murasaki Shikibu.

The largest horse statue in the world, the Zizkov Monument in Prague, stands 9 metres (30 ft) tall.

When Auguste Rodin exhibited his first important work, The Bronze Period, in 1878 it was so realistic that people thought he had sacrificed a live model inside the cast.

Noah Webster, who wrote the Webster Dictionary, was known as a short, pale, smug, boastful, humourless, yet religious man.

Ian Fleming’s James Bond debuted in the novel “Casino Royale” in 1952.

Posted : 8 years ago

In 1961, Matisse’s Le Bateau (The Boat) hung upside-down for 2 months in the Museum of Modern Art, New York – none of the 116,000 visitors had noticed.

The problem of missing teeth was first discussed at length in 1728 by Pierre Fauchard in his book The Surgeon Dentist.

To save costs, the body of Shakespeare’s friend and fellow dramatist, Ben Jonson, was buried standing up in Westminister Abbey, London in 1637.

A 18th century London literary club was called Kit-Cat Club.

When Jonathan Swift published ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ in 1726, he intended it as a satire on the ferociousness of human nature. Today it is enjoyed as a children’s story.

Posted : 8 years ago

The word “novel” originally derived from the Latin novus, meaning “new.”

The words “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” were penned in the 17th century by English philospher John Locke.

2 billion people still cannot read.

It is said that if a statue of a person on a horse has both front legs in the air, the person died in battle; if the horse has one front leg in the air, the person died as a result of wounds received in battle; if the horse has all four legs on the ground, like the Zizkov Monument, the person died of natural causes.

The German PJ Reuter started a foreign news agency in 1858. Today Reuters is one of the biggest news agencies in the world.