Curious beasts before the deluge

A belated write up of a lovely afternoon spent in the company of curious beasts at the Whipple Museum as part of Open Cambridge. These lovely beasts, I'm sure you recognise as an Ichthyosaur and a Plesiosaur. Aren't they just beautiful? I spent over an hour just looking through one volume at the Whipple display, Louis Figuier's La terre avant le deluge (1872 edition). I note the date because in his first edition he depicted Adam and Eve in Eden. In his second edition (1867), influenced by Charles Lyell's Geological Evidences of the Antiquity of Man of 1863, he replaced the image with cavemen in skins, hunting! The appearance of man. (Not woman, obvs.) But still, this was a major advance in t

An Atlantis for Octopuses

Blog been slow as I've been ill, and I've still got the wonders of the Open Cambridge display at the Whipple to share. But not today. Today, I read some news that just had to be known! And I'm sorry its not your normal museum stuff, but instead a wonder of the natural underwater world. You guys now I love my octopuses, octopii and octopodes! Well today, breaking news is that these cephalopods just keep on surprising us. A while ago, I heard about Octopolis - a Metropolis build by octopodes, centered around a mysterious round metal artefact - probably some human junk, it was a one off, I thought "okay, so the cephlapods have been watching the film Stargate (not the series, the series is terr

Skeleton day trip to meet the public

Last weekend I had a fantastic afternoon meeting people meeting human bones for the first time. It was a free, drop in workshop organised as part of the Em-Re-Un New Bohemia exhibition in St. Margaret's Church of Art in Norwich. I don't think I will ever get used to the excitement of watching people encounter their first chance to touch a real human skeleton. Often, the experience comes in a number of stages: 1. Is that ... is that... really?... is it real? 2. Can I... is it okay to... touch it? Really? 3. (hesitant reaching out, last second "should I, shouldn't I?") 4. then the first touch - and the look of surprise and wonder... 5. ...and quickly matched by touching their own face to compa