Jadwiga's Burrow

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Thursday, July 24th, 2014
3:16 pm - Google images is distracting
While looking for suitable images of squirrels for an online info.lit. project, I came across pictures of the Patagonian Mara:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patagonian_mara
A relative of the guinea pig:


More images of baby maras at Zooborns:
http://www.zooborns.com/zooborns/mara/

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Thursday, July 3rd, 2014
12:21 pm - book review
Burma ChroniclesBurma Chronicles by Guy Delisle

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


When my co-worker pressed this on me, I wasn't expecting much-- we had been discussing corrupt post-colonial governments. But in the end I was charmed by Delisle's record of experiences as a work-from-home dad and spouse connected with the aid organizations in Myanmar.

Reviewers say things like 'part travelogue, part memoir, part international criticism' or words to that effect. But what Delisle does is capture both some attractive aspects of life in the country and the frustrations of living under the junta as seen from the outside. It's more a memoir than anything else, but it opens a window into his experience, and beyond that, to the experiences of citizens and aid workers, without attempting to take over their perspectives. It's almost gentle in its way-- certainly gentler and less immediate than the BBC or NPR stories one hears-- and yet that everydayness is more illuminating and sticks with one better than the 15 minute casualty/oppression reports.

Also I like his drawing style.



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Monday, June 30th, 2014
12:27 pm - An interesting book on 19th century pregnancy and birth experience
PRIVATE MATTERSPRIVATE MATTERS by Sylvia D. Hoffert

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Subtitle: American attitudes toward childbearing and infant nurture in the urban North, 1800-1860

This well-researched volume analyzes and summarizes some of the trends in the first half of the 19th century in the Northern US in attitudes and actions related to pregnancy, childbirth, and the first years of a child's life.

Because this volume relies extensively on letters and diaries, as well as some popular and medical writings, it concentrates primarily on upper-middle to upper-class women. For these women, expectations were changing. Doctors were beginning to make inroads in the childbirth industry, especially aided with new technology such as forceps, ergot (to quicken labor), and, later, anesthesia (ether and/or chloroform). Previously, these 'male midwives' attempted to establish themselves as accoucheurs but since they were unlikely to have the practical experience of trained midwives, they more likely to be called in as a last resort, to use the crochet to save the woman's life in cases of obstruction.

However, as male doctors made inroads in the labor room, and professionals such as the month-nurse took over the roles previously occupied by the woman's friends and relations, women also asserted their preferences and choices in various ways. Social pressures, too, were imposed by the local peer group, such as a local preference for a long 'confinement' period after the birth (to paraphrase Shirley Jackson, the mother of three children will do pretty much anything for a week lying down... including having a fourth). Post-partum depression was in fact known (though not by that name) and family and friends made efforts to assist severe cases...

The most touching part of this volume was the discussion of attitudes toward infant rearing, where the primary conflict appeared to be between the attachment to the infant and the probability that he or she would perish, as many children did. This was the time where the idea of infant depravity (inherited sin) was slowly discarded in favor of infant innocence, and the idea became current that a short-lived baby could bring salvation to the family by its innocence and the connection its death made between the parents and heaven. These are the struggles of parents in a time of high infant mortality to resign themselves.

The book is well written and well researched, and a remarkably quick read and study. Certainly worth it for those interested in the history of medicine, women's history, or nineteenth century history; but probably not suitable for the parents of very young children...



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10:48 am - More articles
Haifeng Liu, Jianli Chen, Jianjun Mei, Jinbiao Jia, Lei Shi, A view of iron and steel making technology in the Yan region during the Warring States period and the Han dynasty: scientific study of iron objects excavated from Dongheishan site, Hebei province, China, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 47, July 2014, Pages 53-63, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.04.001.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001290)

Chaofang Ming, Yimin Yang, Jian Zhu, Li Guan, Changsheng Fan, Changqing Xu, Zhengquan Yao, Jonathan Mark Kenoyer, Guoding Song, Changsui Wang, Archaeometric investigation of the relationship between ancient egg-white glazed porcelain (Luanbai) and bluish white glazed porcelain (Qingbai) from Hutian Kiln, Jingdezhen, China, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 47, July 2014, Pages 78-84, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.04.005.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001332)

Sonia Mugnaini, Marco Giamello, Anastasia Pisani, Salvatore Siano, Casting cores used to craft large bronze masterpieces of the Florentine Renaissance and Mannerism, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 47, July 2014, Pages 85-98, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.04.010.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001459)

Teija Alenius, Georg Haggrén, Markku Oinonen, Antti Ojala, Ritva-Liisa Pitkänen, The history of settlement on the coastal mainland in Southern Finland. Palaeoecological, archaeological, and etymological evidence from Lohjansaari Island, Western Uusimaa, Finland, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 47, July 2014, Pages 99-112, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.036.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001253)

Thomas Oliver Pryce, Mitch Hendrickson, Kaseka Phon, Sovichetra Chan, Michael F. Charlton, Stéphanie Leroy, Philippe Dillmann, Quan Hua, The Iron Kuay of Cambodia: tracing the role of peripheral populations in Angkorian to colonial Cambodia via a 1200 year old industrial landscape, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 47, July 2014, Pages 142-163, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.04.009.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001447)

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Friday, June 27th, 2014
10:11 am - Herodotus, father of history
Herodotus: The Father of History (Great Courses, #2353)Herodotus: The Father of History by Elizabeth Vandiver

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I "read" this course series as the audiobook, and really enjoyed it. Though at the beginning-- the first 4 CDs-- Vandiver gives mostly background, she does work through the plotline of Herodotus as well, so it forms a sort of outline for reading the works. Vandiver is careful to give multiple perspectives in the analysis of what Herodotus says, how it fits into Greek history, etc. Ok, admittedly, after listening to 2 of her courses, I'm an unashamed fangirl and would probably listen to her lecturing about Greek paint drying (or the Odyssey, which I admit I find as maddening as the voyages of James T. Kirk...)

I now feel ready to tackle the Histories. I also have a few new 'tags' from Herodotus to add to my repertoire ("Their arrows blacken out the sun!""Good, then we will fight in the shade!" as well as "Soft lands make soft men.") My understanding of the Persian wars, especially the battle of Thermopylae, and even the Peloponnesian wars, is vastly improved-- I admit my recollections from seventh-grade history are rather misty not to mention simplified. I had no idea that Pericles of Golden Age Athens presided over not only the Peloponnesian wars but an outbreak of plague in Athens which killed him.



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I think "Soft lands make soft men" may be the unofficial slogan of my shire of origin. (Comment if you want the whole story...)

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Tuesday, June 24th, 2014
10:57 am - Article links
M.F. Deguilloux, M.H. Pemonge, F. Mendisco, D. Thibon, I. Cartron, D. Castex, Ancient DNA and kinship analysis of human remains deposited in Merovingian necropolis sarcophagi (Jau Dignac et Loirac, France, 7th–8th century AD), Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 41, January 2014, Pages 399-405, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2013.09.006.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440313003191)

Marta Domínguez-Delmás, Mark Driessen, Ignacio García-González, Niels van Helmond, Ronald Visser, Esther Jansma, Long-distance oak supply in mid-2nd century AD revealed: the case of a Roman harbour (Voorburg-Arentsburg) in the Netherlands, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 41, January 2014, Pages 642-654, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2013.09.009.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440313003221)

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Monday, June 23rd, 2014
12:10 pm - Drunken Botanist Review
Just finished this on Friday. It's already brought me into new taste experiences-- I had no idea what sweet vermouth is before, but it's a lovely mixer. And without her introduction to Drambuie (a Scotch-based infusion) I was thinking I might have to resign my peerage due to failure to qualify on the Scotch-tasting front.

The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World's Great DrinksThe Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World's Great Drinks by Amy Stewart

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I 'read' this as an audiobook, after resisting it for some years-- the idea sounded intriguing to an amateur student of plants and plant history like me, but I drink so little alcohol-- and avoid cocktails generally-- that it seemed a waste of my time.

Boy was I wrong. This volume introduced me to all sorts of information I had never had, despite my resources on plants, and in an interesting way.
After all, as she points out, a liquor store is really a storehouse of hundreds of botanicals. :)

After the introduction, the book is organized in several (more or less) alphabetically arranged sections. The author first starts with the base ingredients, such as agave, apples (and pears), barley, grapes, sugar cane, wheat, and other more esoteric fermentables, and their fermented and distilled products. Then she moves on to the various botanicals that are infused or distilled into base alcohols, and finishes up with garden ingredients for mixers and garnishes.

If, like me, you've never bothered much with booze (or experimenting with booze) because you have no idea what those hundreds of bottles in the liquor store taste of, this will be an interesting guidebook. If you love your brewed and distilled liquors, this is a nice background piece and an introduction to things you may not have encountered. Me, I'm slowly working my way through things that sounded good that I've never tried, being a fan of girly-type drinks with fruit and herb ingredients-- the sort of thing my drinking friends normally scorn.

The author points out particularly good brands and also specialities of the local brewing/distilling movement to try, but also gives directions for making a number of cocktails and cocktail ingredients. Her chatty style (and, from looking at it online, the friendly formatting of the text) makes for an easy read, though if you take it seriously you'll be adding post-it flags, highlighting, underlines and notations to your copy. You may then be destined to confuse the staff of your local package shop by asking for fluids they never heard of. :)

Though I may not always agree with the historical information provided (especially as it gets back into the pre-modern period), it doesn't seem too far off base, and the history of many of these ingredients and their products casts a fascinating light on food and brewing history. (For instance, during prohibition, American winemakers sold pressed fruit bricks packaged with a yeast packet, and instructions to on NO ACCOUNT soak the pressed fruit in water and add the yeast, as that might produce an fermenting wine.) The author is completely upfront about the many alcoholic products that take advantage of the trade secrets laws to avoid revealing their ingredients, and the interesting conflicts that have resulted (for instance, in the case of Angostura bitters.)

A wonderful romp through horticultural history and alcoholic practice.



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Friday, June 6th, 2014
1:40 pm - In response to a rant about why adults shouldn't read YA
Someone posted these lightbulb jokes about white male novelists:
http://the-toast.net/2013/11/04/male-novelist-jokes/

I don't read horror. The closest I come is Shari Tepper's <I>Beauty</I> which is enough to put you off horror altogether. In fact, I don't read books about terrible people and how pointless their lives are-- that would be the entire literary output of the second half of the twentieth century. That leaves me not a lot, you know? Especially if I don't read 'men's fiction' genres.

I gave up on modern literary fiction in general after majoring in English and then encountering Barthleme's Snow White (from a class I was bright enough NOT to take). Boring white guys and their problems. I complained in high school about taking a short fiction class at a college where we had to read Miss Lonelyhearts among other stuff. My mother said, basically, we are all having to read books about middle aged white guys feeling how much their lives suck (or young white guys feeling how much their lives suck) because that's what middle aged white guys writing at that time-- and they were all middle aged white guys-- were thinking about. Basically, it's all just fridge horror. Think of Jude the Obscure. When I finished it, I upset the entire class by saying "Thank goodness. I'd been praying he'd have the guts to off himself for the last six chapters." (It was a spoiler, you see; not everyone else had actually kept up with the assigned reading.)

Now, if I want to deal with terrible things happening, I read non-fiction. I read more non-fiction than you'd think. But for fiction, I'm not all that interested in fiction that goes nowhere except up its own anus. And that covers so much 'adult' 'literary' fiction that it's just not worth it to keep trying. If I hate dark chocolate, and 95% of the wrapped candies are dark chocolate, but it's unclear which ones, why would I buy wrapped candy?

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Thursday, May 29th, 2014
4:34 pm - More cites

A few possibly useful citations for European material culture people:

Veerle Devulder, Frank Vanhaecke, Andrew Shortland, David Mattingly, Caroline Jackson, Patrick Degryse, Boron isotopic composition as a provenance indicator for the flux raw material in Roman natron glass, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 107-113, ISSN 0305-4403,http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.009.

Alexandra Touzeau, Romain Amiot, Janne Blichert-Toft, Jean-Pierre Flandrois, François Fourel, Vincent Grossi, François Martineau, Pascale Richardin, Christophe Lécuyer, Diet of ancient Egyptians inferred from stable isotope systematics, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 114-124, ISSN 0305-4403,http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.005.

D. Möncke, M. Papageorgiou, A. Winterstein-Beckmann, N. Zacharias, Roman glasses coloured by dissolved transition metal ions: redox-reactions, optical spectroscopy and ligand field theory, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 23-36, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.007.

Ljiljana Damjanović, Vesna Bikić, Kristina Šarić, Suzana Erić, Ivanka Holclajtner-Antunović, Characterization of the early Byzantine pottery from Caričin Grad (South Serbia) in terms of composition and firing temperature, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 156-172, ISSN 0305-4403,http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.02.031.

Jack N. Fenner, Dashtseveg Tumen, Dorjpurev Khatanbaatar, Food fit for a Khan: stable isotope analysis of the elite Mongol Empire cemetery at Tavan Tolgoi, Mongolia, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 231-244, ISSN 0305-4403,http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.017.

Michaël Vannesse, Benoit Haut, Frédéric Debaste, Didier Viviers, Analysis of three private hydraulic systems operated in Apamea during the Byzantine period, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 245-254, ISSN 0305-4403,http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.022.

José Luis Lerma, Colin Muir, Evaluating the 3D documentation of an early Christian upright stone with carvings from Scotland with multiples images, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 311-318, ISSN 0305-4403,http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.02.026.

Alessandra Pecci, Francesco D'Andria, Oil production in Roman times: residue analysis of the floors of an installation in Lecce (southern Italy), Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 363-371, ISSN 0305-4403,http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.019

Angela Stipisic, Maja Versic-Bratincevic, Zlatka Knezovic, Davorka Sutlovic, Metal content in medieval skeletal remains from Southern Croatia, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 393-400, ISSN 0305-4403,http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.032.

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12:36 pm - Jokes
Beekman is learning to tell jokes, which he calls "funny questions" or "wacky questions" (apparently at his day care they play a "Wacky Question Matching Game"?).

His most successful?

"Chickens don't have any furniture."
"Why?"
"Because they have to sit on eggs."

(and varlous variants.)

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Tuesday, May 27th, 2014
9:52 am - More journal article sightings (or is that citings?)
  Hector A. Orengo, Ana Ejarque, Rosa Albiach, Water management and land-use practices from the Iron-Age to the Roman period in Eastern Iberia, Journal of Archaeological Science, Available online 20 May 2014, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.05.005.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001782)


Anneli Poska, Leili Saarse, Kalev Koppel, Anne B. Nielsen, Eve Avel, Jüri Vassiljev, Vivika Väli, The Verijärv area, South Estonia over the last millennium: A high resolution quantitative land-cover reconstruction based on pollen and historical data, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, Volume 207, August 2014, Pages 5-17, ISSN 0034-6667, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.revpalbo.2014.04.001.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0034666714000517)

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Wednesday, May 21st, 2014
3:04 pm - Free backfiles from the Getty Publishing Virtual Library
Ancient Herbs in the Gardens of the Getty
http://d2aohiyo3d3idm.cloudfront.net/publications/virtuallibrary/0892360356.pdf

Gardens of the Roman World
http://d2aohiyo3d3idm.cloudfront.net/publications/virtuallibrary/0892367407.pdf

and others at:
http://www.getty.edu/publications/virtuallibrary/index.html

*muppet flail*

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Monday, May 19th, 2014
10:50 am - Raw Fish Eaten in Medieval Latvia?
Hui-Yuan Yeh, Aleks Pluskowski, Uldis Kalējs, Piers D. Mitchell, Intestinal Parasites in a mid-14th Century Latrine from Riga, Latvia: Fish Tapeworm and the Consumption of Uncooked Fish in the Medieval Eastern Baltic Region, Journal of Archaeological Science, Available online 14 May 2014, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.05.001.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001617)

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Monday, May 12th, 2014
9:32 am - FYI
D. Rosenow, Th Rehren, Herding cats - Roman to Late Antique glass groups from Bubastis, northern Egypt, Journal of Archaeological Science, Available online 10 May 2014, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.04.025.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001605)

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Tuesday, May 6th, 2014
6:56 pm - More FYI
Veerle Devulder, Frank Vanhaecke, Andrew Shortland, David Mattingly, Caroline Jackson, Patrick Degryse, Boron isotopic composition as a provenance indicator for the flux raw material in Roman natron glass, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 107-113, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.009.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314000880)


Daniele Arobba, Francesca Bulgarelli, Federica Camin, Rosanna Caramiello, Roberto Larcher, Lucia Martinelli, Palaeobotanical, chemical and physical investigation of the content of an ancient wine amphora from the northern Tyrrhenian sea in Italy, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 45, May 2014, Pages 226-233, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.02.024.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314000739)

D. Möncke, M. Papageorgiou, A. Winterstein-Beckmann, N. Zacharias, Roman glasses coloured by dissolved transition metal ions: redox-reactions, optical spectroscopy and ligand field theory, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 46, June 2014, Pages 23-36, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.03.007.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314000867)

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6:22 pm - FYI
S. Conte, T. Chinni, R. Arletti, M. Vandini, Butrint (Albania) between Eastern and Western Mediterranean glass production: EMPA and LA-ICP-MS of Late Antique and Early Medieval finds, Journal of Archaeological Science, Available online 30 April 2014, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.04.014.
(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001496)

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Tuesday, April 29th, 2014
7:25 pm - Possibly of Interest


  • Sonia Mugnaini, Marco Giamello, Anastasia Pisani, Salvatore Siano, Casting cores used to craft large bronze masterpieces of the Florentine Renaissance and Mannerism, Journal of Archaeological Science, Available online 23 April 2014, ISSN 0305-4403,
    http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.04.010.
    (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314001459)




  • A. Duran, A. López-Montes, J. Castaing, T. Espejo, Analysis of a royal 15th century illuminated parchment using a portable XRF–XRD system and micro-invasive techniques, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 45, May 2014, Pages 52-58, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.02.011.
    (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314000594)


  • Bernadett Bajnóczi, Géza Nagy, Mária Tóth, István Ringer, Anna Ridovics, Archaeometric characterization of 17th-century tin-glazed Anabaptist (Hutterite) faience artefacts from North-East-Hungary, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 45, May 2014, Pages 1-14, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.01.030.(http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314000387)



  • Daniele Arobba, Francesca Bulgarelli, Federica Camin, Rosanna Caramiello, Roberto Larcher, Lucia Martinelli, Palaeobotanical, chemical and physical investigation of the content of an ancient wine amphora from the northern Tyrrhenian sea in Italy, Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 45, May 2014, Pages 226-233, ISSN 0305-4403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.02.024.
    (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440314000739)


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Thursday, April 24th, 2014
9:54 am - Realizations from listening to lectures on Classical Mythology.
Ovid's Metamorphoses is in fact fanfic. (The temptation to try to force Miss B. to read it and describe how it compares to the Percy Jackson series in terms of Olympian fanfic is very strong.)

Also:
Roman vs. Greek culture: setting Western culture on a solid basis of 100% cultural appropriation forever.

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Thursday, April 17th, 2014
8:33 pm - Another renaissance cosmetics website
http://sites.ace.ed.ac.uk/renaissancecosmetics/

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8:32 pm - Reposting: Historic Hair Removal Links
To Get Rid of Body Hair, Renaissance Women Made Lotions of Arsenic, Cat Dung And Vinegar...
From the Smithsonian magazine.
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/get-rid-body-hair-renaissance-women-made-lotions-arsenic-cat-dung-and-vinegar-180949977/?no-ist

Warning: illustration is Diana and her nymphs bathing, surprised by Aection.

The original research blog post by Jill Burke:
http://renresearch.wordpress.com/2012/12/09/did-renaissance-women-remove-their-body-hair/

Article on shaving in antiquity:
http://blogs.ucl.ac.uk/researchers-in-museums/2014/02/19/question-of-the-week-how-did-men-in-antiquity-shave-2/

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