Flower Power: Alexander Hamilton’s Doctor and the Healing Power of Nature

Rebecca Rego Barry on Dr. David Hosack, the doctor who attended Alexander Hamilton to his duel (and death), and creator of one of the first botanical gardens in the United States, home to thousands of species which he used for his pioneering medical research. Hosack mostly rejected customary treatments like bloodletting and doses of mercury.[…]

The Art and Knowledge in Medieval Herbals

The illustrations in medieval herbals are beautiful and mysterious. But if you know how to read them, they also convey a wealth of knowledge about the plants they portray. By Julia Nurse / 10.04.2017 Collections Researcher Wellcome Library The illustrated herbal has an almost unbroken line of descent from the ancient Greeks to the Middle[…]

From Folklore to Exotica: Yma Sumac and the Performance of Inca Identity

Yma Sumac’s career embodied many of the contradictions that emerge when the international desire to consume exoticism clashes with the realities of traditional or indigenous cultures. The Voice Born high in the Peruvian Andes, a descendant of the last of the Incan Kings, Yma Sumac spent her childhood literally ‘talking’ with the birds, the beasts,[…]

Mapping the British Caribbean in the Early Modern Atlantic World

Analyzing how three maps of Barbados promoted a flattering image of British colonialism in the Caribbean. To any nation pursuing the creation of a New World empire during the early modern period, maps indisputably held great importance. Together with other products of the geographic trade, they provided a fundamental means to construct and disseminate among[…]

‘Werre’: Warfare in the Ancient World

Throughout history, individuals, states, or political factions have gained sovereignty over regions through the use of war. Introduction The word ‘war’ comes to English by the old High German language word ‘Werran’ (to confuse or to cause confusion) through the Old English ‘Werre’ (meaning the same), and is a state of open and usually declared[…]

The Rise, Fall, and Transition of Empires in Ancient Mesopotamia

As western civilization emerged, power struggles and technological advancements gave birth to new empires and saw their falls as well. Origins The first civilization in human history was that of the Sumerians. This emerged in the mid-4th millennium BCE, with the appearance of the first cities on the Mesopotamian flood plain. This was a pivotal[…]