Read Like an Egyptian

source:  Jan Tik, flickr

Missing tombs, hidden doorways and a powerful queen....it may sound like I'm describing a great fictional story, but in fact these are all pieces of a real-life mystery! For hundreds of years, the resting place of the beautiful and powerful Nefertiti, queen of Egypt in the 14th century B.C., has been a mystery. That was […]

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#TBT: The World Wide Web Goes Live!

Robert Cailliau and the neXT server at CERN

In early August 1991, the first webpage was served up from a neXT computer in a lab at the European Organization for Nuclear Research - CERN, and computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee's World Wide Web project had begun. A lot has changed since then, so for this Throwback Thursday, read more about the birth of the Internet […]

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55th Anniversary of the Pill

Source: doug88888, Flickr

On May 9, 1960, the FDA announced its approval of the contraceptive pill. Soon after, the first birth control pill, Enovid, released by G.D. Searle, hit the market in the United States.‪ The Birth of the Pill by Jonathan Eig traces the fascinating history of its development. The genesis involved tireless efforts by feminist Margaret Sanger, the wealthy Katherine McCormick, Dr. Frankenstein-like […]

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#TBT: The Birth of a New Music Genre

Bob Dylan Live 1966 CD cover

Singer-songwriter and future folk icon Bob Dylan took the stage at the Newport Folk Festival on July 25, 1965, but instead of using his trusty acoustic guitar, he electrified the crowd by plugging in his guitar and having a full band back him. For this Throwback Thursday, let's take a look at his influence on other musicians. […]

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Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité

Fireworks around Le Tour Eiffel on Bastille Day 2011

Tuesday, July 14 is Bastille Day. Why does Bastille Day invoke so much pride and what is the meaning? The Bastille was a well-known prison in Paris built in the late 14th century. During the reign of King Louis XVI—and throughout the reigns of previous Louis—it was used to hold political prisoners, often arrested by […]

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The Literary Legacy of Waterloo

Painting of the duke of weelington at the battle of waterloo

Imagine you're standing in a wet, grassy field on a small hill. From this hill, you look over a large camp. There is smoke from the campfires, or is it from the artillery? Soldiers are mustering themselves under the blue, white and red banners. 26,000 of them will be dead by dusk. June 18 marks the […]

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4 New Books Featuring Chicago

Cloud gate

I've discovered four new books that have either come out in May or will come out in May that feature Chicago prominently. One is nonfiction, but the others are flights of imagination. You do not want to miss any of them. Aleksandar Hemon has written his first comedic novel: The Making of Zombie Wars. Joshua seems […]

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Poor Memories

Famous People Lie

People, as a rule, are generally awful, and when people start worrying about their reputations, they instinctively stretch the truth to make their lives more appealing than they actually are. So it's fun to read books about famous people talking about themselves. When you worry what you'll look like in the light of day, reality starts to bend. […]

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70 Years Later: V-E Day

V-E Day

May 8 is the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, when the Germans surrendered to the Allies, ending World War II in Europe. Not many veterans are still around to celebrate, but it is still important. Here are some titles that help us remember. The Day the War Ended by Martin Gilbert follows the last […]

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Vikings Spotted on Lake Michigan!

Source: One luck guy, Flickr

The northmen of legend have landed at the Field Museum with a wealth of history and ancient treasures for you to discover! In the new Vikings exhibit, you'll explore the relics, legends and legacy of Viking civilization. Here at CPL, you can continue your journey with these epic tales: Bernard Cornwell's The Last Kingdom is […]

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