– Especially for you James Bond fans: Ian Fleming did name the father of 007: Andrew Bond. The famous spy’s mother was Monique Delacroix.
– Trepanning has lost much of its popularity over the years. Trepanning involves boring holes into living human skulls for medical purposes. The process was commonly used in the Middle Ages and thought by many physicians to facilitate the release of “bad biles,” malicious demons and various infections causing pain. Trepanning has a long history – there has even been one Neanderthal skull discovered that displays evidence of a trepanning hole.
– A typical finely-made acoustic guitar maintains its integrity and tones for about 15 years. Violins are different – they usually do not reach their apex tonal qualities until age 100. It is generally thought that excellently constructed violins such as a Stradivarius or a Sebastian Klotz will actually undergo integral tonal aspects that improve over centuries. When I was a child, Father bought me a Sears & Roebuck violin. It sounded awful. Some listening to my attempts involving “harmonious labors” offered that the unearthly screeches escaping from my violin were more likely results inflicted by the “musician” than by flaws of the instrument.
– The famous artist Hans Holbein (1497-1543) sometimes signed his work by drawing a small skull in the foreground of his paintings. “Holbein” means “hollow bone” or skull in old German dialect.
– Records indicate that at least 300 original copies of the renowned Gutenberg Bible were printed in 1454. Only 45 of those first 300 are known to exist today. A copy in good condition would currently be worth about $40,000,000. I have seen three of the existing volumes. Owners generally did not permit me to “check one out” for a few days, allowing careful perusal. In fact, I found treatment of me and my seemingly modest request to border on disrespect – my opinion.
– The novel “Don Quixote,” written in the 1600s, has been translated into more different languages than any other book, except the Bible.
– Gilbert Stuart was the most famous portrait painter in the early United States. Among the eminent who sat for Mr. Stuart were George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe and John Quincy Adams.
– It is not extremely unusual for zebras in Africa to crossbreed with donkeys (or horses) to produce hybrid domestic work animals. Well, I do recommend caution prior to agreeing to medical trepanning – and have a great day.
James White is a retired mathematics teacher who enjoys sharing fascinating trivia. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.