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Think_Long (2)

Naturalis Historia

"My subject is a barren one – the world of nature, or in other words life; and that subject in its least elevated department, and employing either rustic terms or foreign, nay barbarian words that actually have to be introduced with an apology. Moreover, the path is not a beaten highway of authorship, nor one in which the mind is eager to range: there is not one of us who has made the same venture, nor yet one Roman who has tackled single-handed all departments of the subject."
Naturalis Historia was written by Pliny the Elder between 77 and 79 CE and was meant to serve as a kind of proto-encyclopedia discussing all of the ancient knowledge available to him, covered in enough depth and breadth to make it by a reasonable margin the largest work to survive to the modern day from the Roman era. The work includes discussions on astronomy, meteorology, geography, mineralogy, zoology and botany organized along Aristotelian divisions of nature but also includes essays on human inventions and institutions. It is dedicated to the Emperor Titus in its epistle to the Emperor Vespasian, a close friend of Pliny who relied on his extensive knowledge, and its unusually careful citations of sources as well as its index makes it a precursor to modern scholarly works. It was Pliny's last work, as well as sadly his sole surviving one, and was published not long before his death attempting to save a friend from the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius that destroyed Pompeii and Herculaneum, famously recounted by Pliny's eponymous nephew Pliny the Younger.
Here is a reasonable translation that is freely available to download from archive.org for your edification.
[more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Dec 16, 2013 - 24 comments

Jésus-Christ Marie! Ils sont des minéraux!

Ooooh. Aaaah. Pretty. Woaaaaaah. Do you like looking at pictures of rocks and minerals photographed against dark backgrounds? Me too. It's Bijoux et Minéraux.
posted by Think_Long on Oct 9, 2013 - 19 comments

Mineralism

The Tucson Show 2013 Mineral Rooms. [more inside]
posted by Think_Long on May 30, 2013 - 16 comments

Three Ts and Gold

Last month, the Securities and Exchange Commission changed their rules to require companies to disclose if they use 'tantalum, tin, gold, or tungsten if those minerals are “necessary to the functionality or production of a product”' These are also known as 'conflict minerals.' The Deadly Tin Inside Your Smartphone, Businessweek [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Sep 27, 2012 - 17 comments

Can we go Dad, can we?!

Making the Case for Human Missions to Asteroids
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Mar 7, 2012 - 26 comments

Mineralia

Mineralia
posted by jjray on Jun 3, 2011 - 29 comments

Cursed By Gold

Georgina Cranston travelled to the Democratic Republic of the Congo to photograph the women who work deep inside some of the country's disused gold mines. [more inside]
posted by gman on Dec 4, 2010 - 13 comments

World's richest nation: would you believe Afghanistan?

U.S. Identifies Vast Riches of Minerals in Afghanistan.

The United States has discovered nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan, far beyond any previously known reserves and enough to fundamentally alter the Afghan economy and perhaps the Afghan war itself, according to senior American government officials.

The previously unknown deposits — including huge veins of iron, copper, cobalt, gold and critical industrial metals like lithium — are so big and include so many minerals that are essential to modern industry that Afghanistan could eventually be transformed into one of the most important mining centers in the world, the United States officials believe.
posted by scalefree on Jun 13, 2010 - 156 comments

...through walls of red dreams

Mineral of the Day photos.
posted by Wolfdog on Nov 10, 2007 - 16 comments

This guy

This guy thinks all natural deaths are caused by vitamin or mineral deficiencies. And is a great read. Imagine Ross Perot saying this:
Well, when I practised for 12 years up in Portland, somebody'd come to me with a headache. Never had one, and I'd just walk up to them and tap them on their sinuses, and if they collapsed to their knees, they'd know they had a sinus headache. "Oh Doc, why'd you do that?" Well, that's a cheap lab test. Then if they had blood dripping out of their nose, it would take a $35 x-ray to see if they had a cancer in there. 35 bucks and a free lab test as opposed to 421 bucks.
I'm pretty sure he's a nut. But you can never tell.
posted by norm on Jan 19, 2001 - 5 comments

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