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The Alchemy Of Happiness  

Abd al-Hamid, al-Ghazali

Born in 1058 to a family of spinners and sellers of wool in a small village in eastern Iran, Ghazali became one of the most prominent expounders of Islamic theology of his day. Traveling ... More

Late 15th Century Ptolemaic Map of the World Henricus Martellus  

Henricus Martellus

Abstract and Key Words German mapmaker Henricus Martellus created this copy of a Portuguese map to show the extent of Bartolomeu Dias’s explorations beyond ... More

Model of a Ming Ship in the Flotilla of Zheng He  

Anonymous

Between 1405 and 1433, a series of naval expeditions were sent out by Yongle, the third emperor of the Ming Dynasty, under the command of the remarkable Zheng He (1371–1435). The largest of ... More

The Mystery of the Harappan Seals  

Thomas R. Trautmann

Few things are more tantalizing to historians than an undeciphered script. Hundreds of broken and intact Harappan seals have been discovered in numerous sites throughout the Indus Valley, ... More

“On Sociability,” The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex, 1871  

Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin (1809–1882), a British naturalist, propounded the theory of evolution in his famous work On the Origin of Species (1859). With this theory, Darwin launched a massive debate ... More

Pedro Cieza de León on Incan roads  

Pedro Cieza de León

The Incas created an imperial communications and logistics infrastructure that was unparalleled in the Americas, with two highways extending to the north and south from Cuzco nearly the ... More

“The Painter of Modern Life”  

Charles Baudelaire

In his essay The Painter of Modern Life, the French poet Baudelaire (1821–1867) lays out his vision of modernism, which became perhaps the closest thing to a “manifesto” the movement had. ... More

“The Soul of Man under Socialism”  

Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde, an Irish poet and writer, became one of London’s most popular playwrights in the 1890s. Trained as a classicist in Dublin, then at Oxford, Wilde became a journalist in London ... More

The True History of the Conquest of New Spain  

Bernal Díaz del Castillo

The best Spanish source on the Aztec–Spanish encounter was written by Bernal Díaz del Castillo, an old campaigner from Cortés’s army. Born and raised in a poor family in Spain, Díaz began ... More

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