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Windmills Tilted, Scared Cows Butchered, Lies Skewered on the Lance of Reality ... or something to that effect.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

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Today in History

1492 Catholic forces under King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella take the town of Granada, the last Muslim kingdom in Spain.
1758 The French begin bombardment of Madras, India.
1839 Photography pioneer Louis Daguerre takes the first photograph of the moon.
1861 The USS Brooklyn is readied at Norfolk to aid Fort Sumter.
1863 In the second day of hard fighting at Stone's River, near Murfreesboro, Tenn., Union troops defeat the Confederates.
1903 President Theodore Roosevelt closes a post office in Indianola, Mississippi, for refusing to hire a Black postmistress.
1904 U.S. Marines are sent to Santo Domingo to aid the government against rebel forces.
1905 After a six-month siege, Russians surrender Port Arthur to the Japanese.
1918 Russian Bolsheviks threaten to re-enter the war unless Germany returns occupied territory.
1932 Japanese forces in Manchuria set up a puppet government known as Manchukuo.
1936 In Berlin, Nazi officials claim that their treatment of Jews is not the business of the League of Nations.
1942 In the Philippines, the city of Manila and the U.S. Naval base at Cavite fall to Japanese forces.
1943 The Allies capture Buna in New Guinea.
1963 In Vietnam, the Viet Cong down five U.S. helicopters in the Mekong Delta. 30 Americans are reported dead.
1966 American G.I.s move into the Mekong Delta for the first time.
1973 The United States admits the accidental bombing of a Hanoi hospital.
1980 President Jimmy Carter asks the U.S. Senate to delay the arms treaty ratification in response to Soviet action in Afghanistan.

Non Sequitur


Did you know ...

That mainstream pundits are now saying that repugicans are 'unfit for governing'

And wingnuts freak out, call for Boehner to be fired, and blame Obama

Daily Comic Relief

House repugicans kill Hurricane Sandy Relief Bill

The repugicans to Sandy victims: Drop Dead.

The repugican House just killed legislation to provide relief for Hurricane Sandy victims.The House was supposed to take up a huge relief bill proving relief for Hurricane Sandy victims before closing down until the next Congress, but repugican House Speaker John Boehner killed it, and now they’re leaving town:
Screen Shot 2013-01-01 at 10.44.29 PM
Sam Stein at the Huffington Post
From Politico
From Politico
repugicans are continuing their long tradition of leaving town instead of helping Americans in need:
the shrub and John McCain ate cake in California just as Hurricane Katrina was hitting New Orleans, devastating that city and much of the south. President Obama, on the other hand, went to New Jersey to comfort Hurricane Sandy victims.

The most likely reason – Boehner is afraid of a revolt from lunatic wingnuts if asked to spend even more money, even if it is to help victims of one of the greatest disasters in American history.  Conservatives don’t care.  Remember that repugican presidential candidate Mitt Romney called for closing down FEMA in the middle of the Hurricane Sandy.
Washington Post wingnut blogger Jennifer Rubin, a Romney surrogate (wither official or not, she was clearly attached as their hip throughout the campaign) today called on Speaker Boehner to take out his vengeance on Sandy victims, and that’s exactly what Boehner did. Here’s Rubin:
 I fail to see how legislators prepared to pass a gargantuan Sandy relief bill can claim to be upset over the lack of fiscal discipline…..
There are a number of ways the House repugicans can save face. They can pass two measures (their own fiscal cliff measure and the Senate bill). They can reduce the spending in the Sandy relief bill.
The Senate passed $60.4 billion in aid. The House repugicans counter-offered $27 billion, but never brought the bill up for a vote. So now it’s dead. Here’s some of what the legislation would have done:
The bill also provides $17 billion in Community Development Block Grants to help rebuild homes, schools, hospitals and other buildings destroyed by the late October storm, help small businesses and improve the power infrastructure.
People are pretty incredulous that Boehner just did this.
Screen Shot 2013-01-01 at 10.52.56 PM Screen Shot 2013-01-01 at 10.52.44 PM Screen Shot 2013-01-01 at 10.47.37 PM Screen Shot 2013-01-01 at 10.46.40 PM Screen Shot 2013-01-01 at 10.46.00 PM Screen Shot 2013-01-01 at 10.45.32 PM Screen Shot 2013-01-01 at 10.44.29 PM

The truth be told

New Immigrant Surprises

This American Life interviewed immigrants on what surprised them when they came to the United States.

Here's what surprised them:

* Insanely well stocked supermarkets with an impossible variety of foods
* Flag obsession
* Religiosity
* No haggling over prices
* Fake food everywhere, and in huge portions
* Amazing culture of convenience
* Poverty
* People who obey traffic laws
* Young people don't get a new boyfriend/girlfriend every week like on TV
* Americans don't hate their own families like they do on TV



New Year, New Oddball Laws

New year, new laws. When the ball dropped on midnight, January 1st, we not only rang in the new year, but also a slew of oddball laws from around the country.
Good Morning America has a few examples:
Turns out 2013 will be unlucky for cat lovers in Wellington, Kan., where the city will be restricting the number of cats in a household to no more than four. [...]
Another unusual law taking effect at midnight is Public Act 97-743 in Illinois. This law imposes a fine of $1,000 on anyone who pops a wheelie on a motorcycle while speeding. [...]
Come 12:01 a.m. in Concord, Mass., plastic bottles will be considered contraband. Concord will be the first town in the nation to outlaw plastic bottles.
As of Jan. 1, it will no longer be illegal to flash your headlights in Florida to warn drivers about a speeding trap set by police.
In California, more than 800 laws are about to take effect, including one that allows driverless vehicles on the road. But a human must be present in the passenger’s seat of all computer-driven cars.
Read more over at ABC News: here.

What Does a "New Year" Really Mean?

vYesterday was New Year's Day, which simply means the earth has completed another journey around the sun. But how in the world do we know how long that takes? To answer the question, Phil Plat has "taken a simple concept like 'years' and turned it into a horrifying nightmare of nerdery and math."
Let’s take a look at the Earth from a distance. From our imaginary point in space, we look down and see the Earth and the Sun. The Earth is moving, orbiting the Sun. Of course it is, you think to yourself. But how do you measure that? For something to be moving, it has to be moving relative to something else. What can we use as a yardstick against which to measure the Earth’s motion?

Well, we might notice as we float in space that we are surrounded by billions of pretty stars. We can use them! So we mark the position of the Earth and Sun using the stars as benchmarks, and then watch and wait. Some time later, the Earth has moved in a big circle and is back to where it started in reference to those stars. That’s called a “sidereal year” (sidus is the Latin word for star). How long did that take?

Let’s say we used a stopwatch to measure the elapsed time. We’ll see that it took the Earth 31,558,149 seconds (some people like to approximate that as pi x 10 million = 31,415,926 seconds, which is an easy way to be pretty dang close). But how many days is that?

Well, that’s a second complication. A “day” is how long it takes the Earth to rotate once, but we’re back to that measurement problem again. But hey, we used the stars once, let’s do it again! You stand on the Earth and define a day as the time it takes for a star to go from directly overhead to directly overhead again: a sidereal day. That takes 23 hours 56 minutes 4 seconds = 86,164 seconds. But wait a second (a sidereal second?)—shouldn’t that be exactly equal to 24 hours? What happened to those 3 minutes and 56 seconds?

I was afraid you’d ask that—but this turns out to be important.
And that's only the beginning of the explanation of where we get the concepts and the measurements for a "day" and a "year." Read the rest at Bad Astronomy.

Forty Thousand Dutch Take Polar Plunge

A record 40,000 people braved icy temperatures on the Netherlands' North Sea coast Tuesday to take a cold plunge, setting a new record for the traditional New Year's Day dip. Read more 40,000 Dutch Take Polar Plunge: DNews Nugget

Young, urban Indians find political voice after student's gang rape

File photo of demonstrators shouting slogans as they are surrounded by the police during a protest rally in New Delhi
When Preeti Joshi heard of the gang rape of a fellow student, she joined a movement of thousands of outraged young Indians who have taken to the streets of New Delhi almost every day protesting for justice and security for women.
Beaten and raped by five men and a teenager on a moving bus in the capital on December 16, the 23-year-old student died from her injuries on Saturday, her plight shaking the conscience of many urban middle class Indians who consider gender rights as important as poverty alleviation.
India's politicians, seen as out of touch with the aspirations of the urban middle class, have been caught off guard by the protests. For the first time, they head into national elections due by May 2014 with women's rights as an issue.
Even so, the issue is unlikely to be the defining one.
Massive rural vote banks have been untouched by demands for gender equality and the fury across India's cities may fade, just as unprecedented protests in New Delhi over corruption did 16 months ago.
"Rural populations in this country are more concerned about basics such as development," said Ranjana Kumari, director of the Centre for Social Research, a Delhi-based gender rights think-tank.
This jars with what urban protesters like Joshi want.
"I thought we lived in the world's biggest democracy where our voices counted and meant something. Politicians need to see that we need more than bijli, sadak, paani (power, roads, water)," said Joshi, 21, a student of social sciences at Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru University.
Sexual violence against women in largely patriarchal India is widespread, say gender rights activists, and crimes such as rape, dowry murders, acid attacks, honor killings, child marriages and human trafficking are common.
But the savagery of this crime - where the victim was raped for an hour and tortured with an iron rod which did serious damage to her internal organs - has stirred national debate and put gender issues on the political agenda.
The victim's name has not been released. Her alleged attackers have been detained in connection with the crime and police are likely to press murder charges this week. Prosecutors are expected to seek a death sentence for the adults.
"The girl's assault and death were the lancing of wounds that have festered for years. Women had shut up for fear of social pressures but now there's a collective voice to demand change," says Renuka Chowdhury, a parliamentarian and spokeswoman for the main ruling Congress Party and former minister for women and child development.
"This is for the first time, perhaps, that politicians are seeing women as a constituency. People will slowly learn to accept that a woman's vote will matter in times to come."
The government's initial response to the attack drew criticism.
It angered protesters by trying to throttle the largely peaceful demonstrations by imposing emergency policing laws, barricading roads and closing down underground train stations.
And it was a week before Prime Minister Manmohan Singh made a statement, in which he appealed for calm and promised to create a safer environment for women.
"We will examine without delay not only the responses to this terrible crime but also all aspects concerning the safety of women and children and punishment to those who commit these monstrous crimes," Singh said in a rare televised address to the nation on December 24.
One senior government official who did not want to be identified said Singh had been waiting for the home minister and the Delhi authorities to deal with the issue first.
Many protesters have also expressed disappointment at the low profile of younger politicians such as Rahul Gandhi, seen as the Congress Party's prime ministerial candidate in the 2014 elections and who could have helped bridge the gap between the demonstrators and the political establishment.
His first comment, extending sympathy to the victim's family and urging respect for women, came after the student had died.
Analysts said the slow and bumbling response from the elite illustrated how India's politicians are out of touch with the demands of the country's urban youth.
"Whatever the trigger, one thing is absolutely clear: India's political class has been left bewildered by the street protests involving large numbers of mostly apolitical and leaderless individuals," wrote political pundit Swapan Dasgupta in the Times of India on Sunday.
But gender rights are unlikely to make a significant dent in India's elections. Similar street protests in August 2011 over corruption fizzled due to the inability of organizers to maintain public pressure and keep the media interested.
Despite gender sensitive laws being in place for decades, including those outlawing practices such as dowries and child marriage, they have been poorly implemented largely due to a lack of political will, activists say.
Many of India's legislators are elderly men who rely on the support of the rural masses, where deep-rooted patriarchal attitudes mean blame is often first assigned to the victims of sex attacks.
One of the most powerful female figures in Indian history is former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. Her daughter-in-law, Sonia Gandhi, mother of Rahul, heads the Congress Party and there are also more than one million female politicians in village councils.
Yet only 11 percent of seats in India's lower and upper houses of parliament are held by women, ranking it 110th out of 145 countries, below less developed nations such as Niger and Pakistan, says the Inter-Parliamentary Union, a Geneva-based union of national parliaments.
For almost 18 years, moves to give women greater power at the national and state level through the Women's Reservation Bill, which would guarantee 33 percent of seats to women at those levels, have been blocked by male legislators.
"Political parties give tickets for fighting elections on the basis of electoral calculations. How many women are there in Indian politics who can get elected time after time? Very few, right?" said Nirmala Sitharaman, spokeswoman for the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party.
Gender rights activists also point out that political parties have allowed male legislators who themselves face rape charges and other crimes against women to represent them.
Six serving state legislators have been charged with rape, while 36 others including two national parliamentarians have faced charges of sexual harassment, molestation or assault on a woman before holding an assembly seat, according to the Association for Democratic Reforms, a Delhi-based think-tank. (TrustLaw is a global hub for free legal assistance and news and information on good governance and women's rights run by the Thomson Reuters Foundation. For more stories, visit www.trust.org/trustlaw)

Egypt satirist faces probe for insulting president

Egypt's President Mohamed Mursi speaks during his first televised address to the nation at the Egyptian Television headquarters in Cairo June 24, 2012. REUTERS/Stringer 
An Egyptian satirist who made fun of President Mohamed Mursi on television will be investigated by prosecutors following an accusation that he undermined the leader's standing, a judicial source said on Tuesday.
Bassem Youssef's case will increase worries about freedom of speech in the post-Hosni Mubarak era, especially when the country's new constitution includes provisions criticized by rights activists for, among other things, forbidding insults.
In a separate case that fuels concern about press freedom, one of Egypt's leading independent newspapers said it was being investigated by the prosecutor following a complaint from the presidency, which accused it of publishing false news.
Youssef rose to fame following the uprising that swept Mubarak from power in February 2011 with a satirical online programme that was compared with Jon Stewart's Daily Show.
He has since had his own show on Egyptian television and mocked Mursi's repeated use of the word "love" in his speeches by starting one of his programmes with a love song, holding a red pillow with the president's face printed on it.
The prosecutor general ordered an investigation into a formal complaint against Youssef by an Islamist lawyer. The complaint accuses him of "insulting" Mursi, an Islamist backed by the Muslim Brotherhood, and "undermining his standing".
Human rights activists say it is the latest in a series of criminal defamation cases that bode ill for free speech as Egypt reshapes its institutions after Mubarak was toppled.
"The greatest threat to freedom of expression over the last four months has been this rise in criminal defamation cases, whether it is on charges of defaming the president or the judiciary," said Heba Morayef, Egypt director of the New York-based Human Rights Watch.
"The problem is now is we are likely to see an increase in this because criminal defamation is now embedded in the constitution."
Rivals accuse Mursi, who won Egypt's first freely contested leadership election in June, of polarizing society by foisting a divisive, Islamist-leaning constitution on the country.
In the case against the independent daily al-Masry al-Youm, the presidency accused the paper of "spreading false news representing a danger to civil peace, public security and affecting the presidency", the paper said.
The article in question was a report on Saturday on the paper's website which cited "informed sources" saying Mursi was due to visit hospital, without giving a reason for the trip, al-Masry al-Youm said in an online account of the case against it.
The presidency denied Mursi was due to visit hospital. The paper said it had updated its initial story to say the president's visit had been cancelled and instead his wife had gone to the hospital to visit a family member.
Al-Masry Al-Youm said one of its editors had been summoned by the prosecutor for questioning next Saturday.

Why A German Pilot Escorted An American Bomber To Safety During World War II

Once in a while, you hear an old war story that restores your faith in humanity. Usually it involves a moment of quiet in the midst of chaos; some singing or the sharing of a few condiments. But how many of them take place in mid air?

This is the remarkable story of a crippled American bomber spared by a German fighter pilot. After the two planes' pilots had a mid-air moment of understanding, it didn't seem likely that they'd ever see one another again. Only they did, and became closer than brothers. Make sure you watch the video in the article.

More than half million California adults think seriously about committing suicide

More than half a million adults in California seriously thought about committing suicide during the previous year, according to a ...
Continue Reading 

Brain image study: Fructose may spur overeating

FILE - In this Sept. 15, 2011, file photo, high fructose corn syrup is listed as an ingredient on a can of soda in Philadelphia. Scientists have used imaging tests to show for the first time that fructose, a sugar that saturates the American diet, can trigger brain changes that may lead to overeating. The study, in the Journal of the American Medical Association on Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013, is a small study and does not prove that fructose or its relative, high-fructose corn syrup, can cause obesity, but experts say it adds evidence they may play a role. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
This is your brain on sugar — for real. 

Scientists have used imaging tests to show for the first time that fructose, a sugar that saturates the American diet, can trigger brain changes that may lead to overeating.
After drinking a fructose beverage, the brain doesn't register the feeling of being full as it does when simple glucose is consumed, researchers found.
It's a small study and does not prove that fructose or its relative, high-fructose corn syrup, can cause obesity, but experts say it adds evidence they may play a role. These sugars often are added to processed foods and beverages, and consumption has risen dramatically since the 1970s along with obesity. A third of U.S. children and teens and more than two-thirds of adults are obese or overweight.
All sugars are not equal — even though they contain the same amount of calories — because they are metabolized differently in the body. Table sugar is sucrose, which is half fructose, half glucose. High-fructose corn syrup is 55 percent fructose and 45 percent glucose. Some nutrition experts say this sweetener may pose special risks, but others and the industry reject that claim. And doctors say we eat too much sugar in all forms.
For the study, scientists used magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, scans to track blood flow in the brain in 20 young, normal-weight people before and after they had drinks containing glucose or fructose in two sessions several weeks apart.
Scans showed that drinking glucose "turns off or suppresses the activity of areas of the brain that are critical for reward and desire for food," said one study leader, Yale University endocrinologist Dr. Robert Sherwin. With fructose, "we don't see those changes," he said. "As a result, the desire to eat continues — it isn't turned off."
What's convincing, said Dr. Jonathan Purnell, an endocrinologist at Oregon Health & Science University, is that the imaging results mirrored how hungry the people said they felt, as well as what earlier studies found in animals.
"It implies that fructose, at least with regards to promoting food intake and weight gain, is a bad actor compared to glucose," said Purnell. He wrote a commentary that appears with the federally funded study in Wednesday's Journal of the American Medical Association.
Researchers now are testing obese people to see if they react the same way to fructose and glucose as the normal-weight people in this study did.
What to do? Cook more at home and limit processed foods containing fructose and high-fructose corn syrup, Purnell suggested. "Try to avoid the sugar-sweetened beverages. It doesn't mean you can't ever have them," but control their size and how often they are consumed, he said.
A second study in the journal suggests that only severe obesity carries a high death risk — and that a few extra pounds might even provide a survival advantage. However, independent experts say the methods are too flawed to make those claims.
The study comes from a federal researcher who drew controversy in 2005 with a report that found thin and normal-weight people had a slightly higher risk of death than those who were overweight. Many experts criticized that work, saying the researcher — Katherine Flegal of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — painted a misleading picture by including smokers and people with health problems ranging from cancer to heart disease. Those people tend to weigh less and therefore make pudgy people look healthy by comparison.
Flegal's new analysis bolsters her original one, by assessing nearly 100 other studies covering almost 2.9 million people around the world. She again concludes that very obese people had the highest risk of death but that overweight people had a 6 percent lower mortality rate than thinner people. She also concludes that mildly obese people had a death risk similar to that of normal-weight people.
Critics again have focused on her methods. This time, she included people too thin to fit what some consider to be normal weight, which could have taken in people emaciated by cancer or other diseases, as well as smokers with elevated risks of heart disease and cancer.
"Some portion of those thin people are actually sick, and sick people tend to die sooner," said Donald Berry, a biostatistician at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.
The problems created by the study's inclusion of smokers and people with pre-existing illness "cannot be ignored," said Susan Gapstur, vice president of epidemiology for the American Cancer Society.
A third critic, Dr. Walter Willett of the Harvard School of Public Health, was blunter: "This is an even greater pile of rubbish" than the 2005 study, he said. Willett and others have done research since the 2005 study that found higher death risks from being overweight or obese.
Flegal defended her work. She noted that she used standard categories for weight classes. She said statistical adjustments were made for smokers, who were included to give a more real-world sample. She also said study participants were not in hospitals or hospices, making it unlikely that large numbers of sick people skewed the results.
"We still have to learn about obesity, including how best to measure it," Flegal's boss, CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden, said in a written statement. "However, it's clear that being obese is not healthy - it increases the risk of diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and many other health problems. Small, sustainable increases in physical activity and improvements in nutrition can lead to significant health improvements."

NASA's Quadrantid meteor shower viewing tips


The Explosively Cool Chemistry Behind Fireworks

Find out what's inside the boom and brilliant lights that make holiday festivities extra beautiful the world over... More;

Were you aware that ...

The Baobab Tree can store up to 32,000gallons of water in its trunk.

Montserrat: The Modern Pompeii

June 1995 is a month that those living on the idyllic Caribbean island of Montserrat will remember for the rest of their days. The island's volcano, on the Soufrière Hills had been dormant for many hundreds of years. Yet in that fateful month it erupted - and it hasn't stopped since.

Much of the island was devastated. A further eruption followed in 1997. In a short time the island's capital, Plymouth, founded in Georgian times, had been buried by almost 40 feet of mud and other debris. Much of the airport and the dock were destroyed and the entire southern part of the island, an overseas territory of the United Kingdom, was rendered uninhabitable.

Awesome Pictures


Altocumulus lenticularis Mont Fuji 
Lenticular clouds altocumulus lenticularis or cloud formations are round or ovoid appearing in mid and high altitude (from 2000 meters)
Altocumulus lenticularis Mont Fuji 
Lenticular clouds altocumulus lenticularis or cloud formations are round or ovoid appearing in mid and high altitude (from 2000 meters)

Dried Squash Holds Headless King's Blood

Scientists believe they have authenticated the remains of a rag once dipped in the blood of the beheaded Louis XVI. Read more
  Dried Squash Holds Headless King's Blood

Gollum-like Plants Thrive in Cave Gloom

In the gloom of the caves and gorges of China, a plant has been discovered thriving in the dark. Read more Gollum-like Plants Thrive in Cave Gloom

Random Photo

Jellyfish on Boom-Bust Cycle Worldwide

Though some reports suggest jellyfish are taking over the world’s oceans, long-term records of these gelatinous animals fail to show a global increase in jellyfish blooms. Read more
Jellyfish on Boom-Bust Cycle Worldwide

Roe Deer Abundance


Deer numbers changing woodlands

The increasing abundance of native roe deer appears to be having an impact on woodlands, a study suggests.

Gorilla takes up tightrope walking to help combat homesickness

First he was homesick, but Kidogo, a gorilla in Krefeld zoo in Germany, has now taken up tightrope walking.

The 12-year-old silverback moved to Germany from Denmark's Givskud Zoo at the end of March. He was acquired by the German zoo after the previous male gorilla Massa proved to be infertile.

Kidogo, a western lowland gorilla nicknamed 'King Kodo' by his keepers, shares his gorilla garden with females Muna, 23 and Oya, 24. Roughly translated from Swahili, his name means "small".

After he initially suffered extreme homesickness, he has now discovered he is something of an artiste.

A rhinoceros named Clara

Clara the rhinoceros (?1738-14 April 1758) was a female Indian Rhinoceros who became famous during 17 years of touring Europe in the mid-18th century. She arrived in Europe in Rotterdam in 1741, becoming the fifth living rhinoceros to be seen in Europe in modern times since Dürer's Rhinoceros in 1515. After tours through towns in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, France, Italy, Bohemia and Denmark, she died in London.
In 1738, aged approximately one month, Clara [had been] adopted by Jan Albert Sichterman in India after her mother was killed by Indian hunters. She became quite tame, and was allowed to move freely around his residence... 
Her travels through Europe are detailed in the Wikipedia entry.  At Monkeyfur it is noted that "poems and songs were written about Clara, french naval boats were named after her (Rhinocéros, not Clara) and in Paris men could have their wigs styled à la rhinocéros."
(The latter is discussed in a QI episode).

The image at right is Clara the rhinoceros (1742) Engraving by Jan Wandelaar for Bernhard Siegfried Albinus' book: Tabulae sceleti et musculorum corporis humani. Printed in Leyden by James and Henry Verbeek, 1747.

The first rhino to visit Europe was immortalized in 1515 in Durer's famous engraving:
Dürer's woodcut is not an entirely accurate representation of a rhinoceros. He depicts an animal with hard plates that cover its body like sheets of armour, with a gorget at the throat, a solid-looking breastplate, and rivets along the seams; he also places a small twisted horn on its back, and gives it scaly legs and saw-like rear quarters. None of these features is present in a real rhinoceros. Despite its anatomical inaccuracies, Dürer's woodcut became very popular in Europe and was copied many times in the following three centuries. It was regarded by Westerners as a true representation of a rhinoceros into the late 18th century. Eventually, it was supplanted by more realistic drawings and paintings, particularly those of Clara the rhinoceros, who toured Europe in the 1740s and 1750s. It has been said of Dürer's woodcut: "probably no animal picture has exerted such a profound influence on the arts".

Animal Pictures