Putting the Universe under the Telescope over the Next Decade

The 2020s will use increasingly complex technology to ramp up our efforts to understand more about the Universe. Introduction We humans are a curious, questing lot, and the 2020s will see us continue to observe the Universe around us, trying to understand more about fundamental particles, forces, objects and relationships from both ground and space-based[…]

NESSI Emerges as New Tool for Researching Exoplanet Atmospheres

NESSI views the galaxy in infrared light, which is invisible to the human eye. By Elizabeth Landau The darkness surrounding the Hale Telescope breaks with a sliver of blue sky as the dome begins to open, screeching with metallic, sci-fi-like sounds atop San Diego County’s Palomar Mountain. The historic observatory smells of the oil pumped[…]

From Ancient Scotland to Online Auctions: A Tale of Roman Nails

Ancient iron nails would hardly be considered Art, but they could offer insights on Roman metalworking. Introduction In 1977, just three years after the newly built Getty Villa opened its doors to the public, Chicago resident Norman J. Cowan and his family visited the museum during a trip to California. The museum must have made[…]

Crucifixion as Punishment in Ancient Rome

The goal of Roman crucifixion was not just death, but also dishonor. Introduction Crucifixion was an ancient method of execution practiced in the Roman Empire and neighboring Mediterranean cultures, such as the Persian Empire, where a person was nailed to a large wooden cross or stake and left to hang until dead. Contrary to popular[…]

The Oxus Treasure from the Ancient Persian Achaemenid Empire

The general consensus is that it is genuine, dates from the Achaemenid Period, and is representative of some of the finest art in metallurgy from that time. Introduction The Oxus Treasure is a collection of 180 artifacts of precious metal, dated to the Achaemenid Empire (c. 550-330 BCE), which were discovered on the north bank[…]

Ancient Persian Art and Architecture

Persian art and architecture was influenced early on by the older civilizations of Elam and Susiana. Introduction Persian art and architecture in the present day is associated with the nation of Iran and usually designated as beginning with the Achaemenid Empire (c. 550-330 BCE) but has an even longer history with its origins dating back[…]