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The world is a weird and fascinating place, filled with surprises and forgotten gems. What information do you have that deserves a little sunlight?
1. As many know, the commander of the English militia unit that started the Seven Years’ War was none other than our beloved George Washington. The most incendiary aspect of the incident concerned the death of Ensign Jumonville at the hands of Tanacharison, Washington’s Iroquois ally and guide. Washington subsequently signed a confession admitting that he had Jumonville “assassinated,” though he later claimed that he was misled by the translator, and that Tanacharison acted without his knowledge or consent. What is not terribly well known is that the incident was the subject of a great deal of anti-English French propaganda including this a lengthy (and very bad) epic poem that depicts Washington (unnamed) as a blood-thirsty backwoods villain.
He [Jumonville] falls at the feet of his executioners.
Three times he lifts his heavy eyelid,
Three times his dulled eye closes to the light.
In dying, the tender memory of France
Comes to delight his great soul.
He dies: trampled under the feet of an inhuman band,
His torn members throb on the ground.
2. Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, savoy, kohlrabi and kai-lan are merely different pieces of different cultivars of the same species. Not the same family, but the very same species.
3. In contrast, Asian and African elephants are not particularly closely related; rather, they’re the two surviving members of the Elephantinae family, which also includes mammoths and paleoxodon (the Elephantinae are, themselves, the sole survivors of the order, the Proboscidea, which includes all kinds of weird, tusked-and-trunked mammals). Asian elephants, in fact, are much better thought of as a species of tropical mammoths, while African elephants are a different matter entirely.
4. Liquid hydrogen contains less hydrogen per volume than — and about a quarter the energy of — gasoline.Published in