Mary Shelley completed her writing in May 1817, and Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus was first published on January 1, 1818. It was issued anonymously, with a preface written for Mary by Percy Bysshe Shelley and with a dedication to philosopher William Godwin, her father. It was published in an edition of just 500 copies in three ...Read more
Warren Beatty's first job came at 17. The National Theater, Washington, DC had been plagued by rats. The actors pressed theater management to hire an official rat-catcher and young Beatty, desparate for a job in the theatre, landed the role.
There really are such thing as "cooties." Though most people believe that "cooties" is just a nonsense word used by children to describe unpleasant insects, cooties are in fact a kind of body lice.
A zoot suit is a style of clothing popularized by African Americans, Filipino Americans, and Mexican Americans in the late 1930s and 1940s. It has wide-legged, tight-cuffed, or "pegged," trousers (called tramas); and a long coat with wide lapels, and wide, padded shoulders (called the carlango). Often zoot suiters wear a felt hat with a long ...Read more
Forrest Mars, Sr., the founder of Mars, was inspired to create a candy-coated, bite-sized chocolate candy after observing soldiers in the Spanish Civil War enjoying such a treat. He noticed that the hard candy shell prevented meltage. By 1941, Mars had patented and begun production of the now-famous M&M candy.
Yes and no. Trade in ivory has been illegal around the world for several decades, thanks to CITES, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, a treaty signed by more than 120 nations. The treaty covers Asian elephants, among other animals. Importing ivory from African elephants is also illegal in the US, thanks to a 1989 ban. ...Read more
Olympic badminton rules say that the shuttlecock has to have exactly 16 feathers. The best shuttles are made from the feathers from the left wing of a goose.
Oilbirds have a sonar sense shared among known birds only in Southeast Asia's swiftlets (although very common among bats). The oilbird is a cave dweller, and it bounces its echoing clicks from rock walls to help navigate in the dark vaults where they nest by the hundreds.
It is possible to drown and not die. Technically the term "drowning" refers to the process of taking water into the lungs, not to death caused by that process.
The first patented roller skate was introduced in the year 1760 invented by a Belgian man named John Joseph Merlin. However, his invention did not become very popular among the general population. It wasn't until 1863 when James Pimpton from Massachusetts invented the "rocking" skate, an improvement that afforded the ability to turn, allowing ...Read more
When she was a young woman, sex therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer once lived in Israel. There, she was a trained sniper. She was so adept at handling a Sten gun - a British submachine gun - that she could quickly assemble one while blindfolded.
Jupiter is the largest planet, and it has the shortest day. Although Jupiter has a circumference of 280,000 miles, compared with Earth's 25,000, Jupiter manages to make one turn in 9 hours and 55 minutes.
The first catcher in major league baseball history to win the Rookie of the Year award was Johnny Bench of the Cincinnati Reds, in 1968.
The Netherlands are the lowest country in the world. It is estimated that 40 percent of the land is below sea level.
Seating on the first scheduled intercity commuter airplane flight consisted of moveable wicker chairs. There were 11 of them on the first Ford Tri-Motors. After several years, Ford replaced them with aluminum-framed leather chairs.
If Earth was the size of an apple, the atmospheric layer would be no thicker than the skin of the apple.
France is the largest Western European country. Its area is slightly less than twice the size of Colorado.
There were 45 states in the United States at the turn of the last century. Oklahoma became the 46th state in 1907, New Mexico and Arizona in 1912, and Alaska and Hawaii in 1959.
A cat's arching back is part of a complex body language system, usually associated with feeling threatened. The arch is able to get so high because the cat's spine contains nearly 60 vertebrae which fit loosely together. Humans have only 34 vertebrae.
Compressive structures (i.e. a structure that stands on its own) would be similar to those used for aerial masts. While these structures might reach the agreed altitude for space (100 km), they are unlikely to reach geostationary orbit (35,786 km). Due to the difference between sub-orbital and orbital spaceflights, additional rockets or other ...Read more