Cuneiform examples

Here are examples of cuneiform from Sumeria, Iran, and Mexico. I couldn’t find the dates for a few of them, but cuneiform appeared between 4000 BC and the year 0.

Archivio Fotografico – CittĂ  del Messico, 16 febbraio: Interno del Museo Nazionale di Antropologia (Museo Nacional de Antropologia, MNA)


Circa 3500 B.C. “Digitising Iran’s cuneiform collection,”

Mexico City, FEB 16: National Museum of Anthropology (Museo Nacional de Antropologia, MNA) on FEB 16, 2017 at Mexico City

Wax tablets

Here are a few examples of wax tablets—one Greek and two Roman. The first two (the Roman examples) come from


Roman writing tablets, 1st – 2nd century AD (Public Domain)


Newly Discovered Ancient Roman Writing Tablets Provide Snapshots of Roman-Era London

The last example is Greek:

1400-1200 from Knossos, Mycenae, Greece, from the Musée archéologique de MycÚnes. Found at altmarius, Creative Commons License.

The St. John’s Bible

Mary just posted a video about the production of the St. John’s Bible out at the university. The Bible is lovely. Here are a scattering of images that St. John’s posted on its website when they announced its publication:

Suffering Servant, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2006, The Saint John’s Bible and the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA.  Used by permission.  All rights reserved.


Examples of Book of Hours

Here are some lovely images from various Medieval codexes. According to the Brittanica (,

Book of hours, devotional book widely popular in the later Middle Ages. The book of hours began to appear in the 13th century, containing prayers to be said at the canonical hours in honour of the Virgin Mary. The growing demand for smaller such books for family and individual use created a prayerbook style enormously popular among the wealthy. The demand for the books was crucial to the development of Gothic illumination. These lavishly decorated texts, of small dimensions, varied in content according to their patrons’ desires.

Here are other examples from a simple Google Image search. As you see, the illustrations are lovely.









































The Danish-made Malling-Hansen Writing Ball

In The Shallows, Nicholas Carr talks about the Danish-made Malling-Hansen Writing Ball that Friedrich Nietzsche used as his vision was failing and he was worried about having to give up his writing (17). Here’s an image of this Writing Ball from John Farrier’s “Early Typewriter: The Malling-Hansen Writing Ball,”

Malling Hansen’s Skrivekugle (Writing Ball), 1865

The Writing Ball’s inventor, Rasmus Hans Johan Malling-Hansen, who patented this device in 1871, was the director of the Denmark’s institute for the hearing impaired in Copenhagen. You can read more about the device at the Neatoshop website.

One of many good articles on Boseman

‘Black Panther’ Director Ryan Coogler On Chadwick Boseman: ‘Because He Was A Caretaker, A Leader, And A Man Of Faith, Dignity And Pride, He Shielded His Collaborators From His Suffering”

The Kinzie Bridge

My blog’s header image is the Kinzie Bridge in Chicago when the rail line was still in use.

According to Chicago Loop Bridges (,

The Kinzie Street crossing has had a long and storied history. From being the first bridge over the Chicago River (1832) to last movable bridge staffed by a full-time bridge operator on the Chicago River (1999).

Source: Chicago Loop Bridges website

Because the bridge was so low, the bridge (staffed 24/7) was raised to allow boats and barges to pass through. I remember riding in the passenger seat of our family car through the Loop when I was a child and waiting for the bridge to rise and lower to allow the passage of these boats.

All this changed, though, when a significant flood in 1992 spilled under the bridge into hidden freight tunnels:

On April 13, 1992 a section of the abandoned freight tunnel under the Kinzie St. bridge failed. Water was noticed pouring in the subbasement at the Merchandise Mart around 6 AM. Within an hour waters had reached City Hall and Marshall Field’s (now Macy’s). By 10 AM Commonwealth Edison began shutting power off around the Loop and evacuations began.

The tunnels were finally sealed and dewatered by the Army Corps of Engineers and returned to city control on May 22, 1992.

The bridge had to be rebuilt, and engineers raised it by five feet so that it wouldn’t need to be raised and lowered and wouldn’t need round-the-clock staffing. This didn’t end its history—or the interesting tales about it. The Chicago Loop Bridges website tells a funny story about the Dave Matthews Band tour bus passing over the bridge and dumping its sewage as tourists on the famed architectural boat tour passed under the bridge.