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DaVinci's musical invention realized after 500 years

© Tomasz Wiech/AFP
Take a bow: The viola organista's strings are played in the same way as a cello.
A bizarre instrument combining a piano and cello has finally been played to an audience more than 500 years after it was dreamt up Leonardo da Vinci.

Da Vinci, the Italian Renaissance genius who painted the Mona Lisa, invented the ''viola organista'' - which looks like a baby grand piano - but never built it, experts say.

The viola organista has now come to life, thanks to a Polish concert pianist with a flair for instrument-making and the patience and passion to interpret da Vinci's plans.

Full of steel strings and spinning wheels, Slawomir Zubrzycki's creation is a musical and mechanical work of art.

''This instrument has the characteristics of three we know: the harpsichord, the organ and the viola da gamba,'' Zubrzycki said as he debuted the instrument at the Academy of Music in the southern Polish city of Krakow.

The instrument's exterior is painted in a rich midnight blue, adorned with golden swirls painted on the side. The inside of its lid is a deep raspberry inscribed with a Latin quote in gold leaf by 12th-century German nun, mystic and philosopher, Saint Hildegard.

''Holy prophets and scholars immersed in the sea of arts both human and divine, dreamt up a multitude of instruments to delight the soul,'' it says.

Boat

Centuries-old shipwreck discovered off North Carolina coast

© Luis Lamar, Woods Hood Oceanographic Institution
The research vessel Atlantis with the submersible Alvin hanging off its sterm.
Scanning sonar from a scientific expedition has revealed the remains of a previously unknown shipwreck more than a mile deep off the North Carolina coast. Artifacts on the wreck indicate it might date to the American Revolution.

Marine scientists from Duke University, North Carolina State University and the University of Oregon discovered the wreck on July 12 during a research expedition aboard the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) research ship Atlantis.

They spotted the wreck while using WHOI's robotic autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) Sentry and the manned submersible Alvin. The team had been searching for a mooring that was deployed on a previous research trip in the area in 2012.

Cross

Russian royal descendants want Romanovs' killer's name erased from Moscow map

Image
© RIA NOVOSTI
The last Russian Emperor - now a Saint - Nicholas II, last of the Royal Romanovs, and his family. Are they finally to see justice after nearly 100 years?
Members of the Romanov dynasty intend to address the Moscow City Hall with the request to rename a metro station that currently is named after the Bolshevik who played a key role in the 1918 execution of Tsar Nicolas II and his family.

Representatives of the Russian Imperial House say that the renaming could be done on the anniversary of the killing, which happened in the early hours of July 17, 1918. The station in question is currently called Voikovskaya - After Pyotr Voikov who worked in the Bolshevik "Extraordinary Commission" security service and was in charge of first keeping the Romanovs under house arrest and later of their execution and body disposal. The Romanovs also want the city authorities to rename the whole Voikovsky district in Moscow for the same reasons.

The dynasty's lawyer German Lukyanov told the Interfax news agency that the renaming should have happened a long time ago. "It is simply necessary to clear the Moscow city map of the name of someone who took part in repression and who organized the Tsar's family killing." He added that Voikov's name was found under the order to issue 80 kilos of sulfuric acid used to dissolve the bodies of the last Russian Emperor, his wife and children and also some of their servants.

Comment: This, and similar, symbolic gestures are gaining traction in Russia, where people are re-considering events of the past.

Maidan, Kiev, junta soft power, color revolution, themed coup, foreign sponsorship...

Current events beg the question: was the Russian Revolution of this same mould?


MIB

US-sponsored human experimentation and mind control increasingly in mainstream media

Image

The small southeastern French town of Pont Saint Esprit, subject to a CIA bioweapon experiment in 1951.
French TV channel France 3 recently aired a documentary that covered an interesting episode in the long history of CIA abuse of innocent civilians. Although the incident and its context are highly disturbing, it is a testament to the persistence of a select few researchers that their findings are reaching a wider audience.

The show focuses on the 1951 "mass intoxication" case in the French village of Pont Saint Esprit. For one week in August that year, hundreds of villagers suffered from an apparent attack of psychosis that included hallucinations. As a result, seven people died (two of them by suicide) and some sixty were interned in psychiatric hospitals. Just one month after the events, the British Medical Journal explained it away as a case of poisoned bread by ergot mold (a psychedelic mold). However, investigative journalist Hank P. Albarelli Jr has convincingly argued in recent years that this was in fact an experiment carried out jointly by the CIA and the US Army, involving the deliberate use of LSD or a similar psychotropic substance.


The nightmarish scenes of the week that began on the 17th of August 1951 were described as follows:
A French newspaper at the time of the bizarre incident wrote, "It is neither Shakespeare nor Edgar [Allen] Poe. It is, alas, the sad reality all around Pont-St.-Esprit and its environs, where terrifying scenes of hallucinations are taking place. They are scenes straight out of the Middle Ages, scenes of horror and pathos, full of sinister shadows." A brief article in TIME magazine, then a major U.S. news journal, with extremely close ties to the CIA, stated, "Among the stricken, delirium rose: patients thrashed wildly on their beds, screaming that red flowers were blossoming from their bodies." Other newspapers that converged on the scene described people throwing themselves from rooftops, women and men throwing their clothes off and running the streets naked, and children complaining that their stomachs were infested with coils of snakes.

Info

Oldest dentistry found in 14,000-year-old tooth

© Stefano Benazzi
A large cavity is seen in the lower right third molar of the Paleolithic man.
An infected tooth partially cleaned with flint tools represents the oldest known dentistry, says a new international study on a 14,000-year-old molar.

The find represents the oldest archaeological example of an operative manual intervention on a pathological condition, according to researchers led by Stefano Benazzi, a paleoanthropologist at the University of Bologna.

"It predates any undisputed evidence of dental and cranial surgery, currently represented by dental drillings and cranial trephinations dating back to the Mesolithic-Neolithic period, about 9,000-7,000 years ago, " Benazzi said.

The patient was a young man, about 25 years old, living in northern Italy.

His well-preserved skeleton was found in 1988 in the Veneto Dolomitesnear Belluno, in a rock shelter burial named Ripari Villabruna.

The find was directly dated between 13,820 and 14,160 years old. It's now kept at the University of Ferrara for further studies.

"The treatment went unnoticed for all these years. The cavity was described as a simple carious lesion," Benazzi said.

Detailing their finding in the journal Scientific Reports, Benazzi and colleagues show that forms of dental treatment were already adopted in the Late Upper Palaeolithic.

At that time, toothpicks probably made of bone and wood were used to remove food particles between teeth.

Network

The truth about the Srebrenica 'genocide', 20 yrs later


Srebrenica memorial in Bosnia and Herzegovina listing the names of 'genocide victims', including those missing (and found alive later), killed in battle, by suicide, and other causes, some of whom were probably victims of war crimes.
This past week the world was reminded that it has been 20 years since the events following the Bosnian Serb Army's entry into Srebrenica and today I am posting a special report about this event which I personally consider of absolutely crucial importance in world history not only because of the large number of people who died in this event, but also because it served as the pretext for the first completely illegal war of aggression by the US/NATO which attacked the Bosnian Serbs in violation of the UN Charter. All the subsequent wars of aggression of the AngloZionist Empire (Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Yemen, etc.) have their prototype in the war against the Bosnian-Serbs.

I can personally attest that doubts about what really happened (or not) in Srebrenica were voiced in, shall we say, "well informed circles" within days of the Bosnian-Serb conquest of the city. I cannot name these circles, but let's just that that I am talking about people with direct access to classified information coming out of Bosnia. One thing was immediately established: that a large number of armed Bosnian-Muslim men had attempted a breakthrough from Srebrenica to Tuzla and that 1) many had been killed in *combat* with Bosnian-Serbs and many actually made it to Tuzla.

Arrow Down

Vast scale of British slave ownership revealed

© The Independent, UK
46,000 Britons were slave owners on the day that slavery was abolished in 1833 and all received a share of a £17 billion compensation payout from the Government.
The shocking scale of British slave ownership has been revealed in scores of official records which have found that thousands of modern-day Briton's are related to owners who received huge sums in compensation when the trade was abolished.

A five year project by University College London has compiled the identities of 46,000 Britons who owned slaves, mainly in the West Indies, on the day that slavery was abolished in 1833.

Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife Samantha, Benedict Cumberbach, Ben Affleck and author George Orwell are just some of the high profile ancestors (sic) of the slave owners revealed in the files.


Comment: Sott is sure that the author actually means descendants.


Records from the Slave Compensation Commission show that some 800,000 Africans were freed upon abolition after being kept as legal property.

Upon their liberation the Commission paid out the modern equivalent of £17 billion in compensation to the UK's tens of thousands of owners - the largest government pay-out since the 2009 bank bailout.

The colossal sum represented 40 per cent of government expenditure in 1834.

Top Secret

The CIA's human experiments

© www.youtube.com
We used to think that cruel and inhuman experiments on human beings were conducted only in the concentration camps of Nazi Germany. However, unfortunately, we ever more often find out that such experiments are performed almost regularly in the United States by US intelligence agencies, and even citizens of the United States are among those who suffer in these experiments on human beings.

Recently, the international community obtained yet another piece of evidence of criminal nature of the CIA - the main instrument of Washington's 'democracy'. As follows from the secret documents made public by The Guardian newspaper, the CIA, in its program of torture of alleged terrorists in US prisons, performed inhuman experiments on human beings in the style of Nazi Germany butchers.


Comment: Horrific torture and unfathomable experiments perpetrated by the USA/CIA are finally coming to light. While seemingly disconnected, they mosaic into a terrible picture for terrible times by terrible people -- a self-fulfilling agenda of "exceptional" decisions by covert agencies, the military and pathological politicians. We will not be asked permission. It goes beyond brinkmanship. As stated in the above video, the CIA "would do the same again today." Maybe worse. Undoubtedly worse.

See also:
What else is there to learn? CIA 'experimenting' on people in 60+year old torture program
Did CIA doctors perform torture research on detainees?
CIA & Pentagon Knew Their Methods Were Torture
Shocking New Details of US Human Experiments in Guatemala


Sherlock

Mysterious Labyrinth of Buda: Ancient caves beneath castle in Budapest

© CC BY-SA 3.0
Prehistoric-style art decorates the walls of the labyrinth. CC BY-SA 3.0
Deep under the imposing stone walls of a 13th century palace, the Labyrinth of Buda contains, in its twisting paths and pitch-black corridors, the dark history of the ancient castle district of Budapest. Here, the skeletons of the dead reveal violent deeds, but in more recent times the caverns have been open to the public, showcasing their haunting beauty. Suddenly, in 2011 police raided the labyrinth and locked the doors for reasons unexplained. What prompted this strange closure? What was being hidden beneath the streets of Budapest?

The Dark History of the Caves

The complex of underground caves and passages were carved out of solid rock by rushing thermal waters long before prehistoric man used them as shelter and hunting more than half a million years ago. Archaeological evidence of 350,000-years-old stone tools belonging to Homo erectus were reportedly located in the caves.

The passages and chambers stretch out over 1200 meters (4000 feet) and are nearly 16 meters (53 feet) beneath the ancient castle district of what is now Budapest, the largest city in Hungary. So historic and unique are the caves that they were recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987 as an outstanding urban landscape. The caves have been a part of the history of mankind and the culture of Budapest since prehistory, and have seen many changes over the eons.

Colosseum

Were American volcanoes responsible for dust cloud that ended Roman Empire?


Thomas Cole's 'The Fall of Rome'
On March 24 536AD the sky suddenly darkened across continental Europe as a thick dust cloud rolled in and stayed put for 18 months.

Historians such as Prokopios record that the Sun shone as dimly as the Moon, sparking summer frosts and snow showers and providing too little light to ripen crops and fruit. Three years later a similar dust veil blocked out sunlight for several months.

The natural catastrophes led to widespread famine and was responsible for the Great Justinian Plague which wiped out one third of Europeans and probably dealt the fatal blow to the struggling Roman Empire.

Now scientists have determined that the cause was probably a series of North American volcanoes which shot huge amounts of sulphate and ash into the atmosphere, followed by further eruptions in the Tropics.

New studies of ice cores and historical records by the British Antarctic Survey, Nottingham University and 17 other international universities and institutions, show that there was a huge volcanic eruption in 535AD or early 536AD in North America. A second eruption occurred in 539AD.

Comment: As Pierre Lescaudron shows in his book Earth Changes and the Human-Cosmic Connection, catastrophes tend to be related to common causes, whether volcanoes, storms, earthquakes or cometary bombardment. So it's probably no simple coincidence that there is also evidence of a comet bombardment around the same time, in 540 AD. See: