Recalling Experiments Past – Reciting poetry to a flame to see what happens

Somewhere round or about the late 1850s, John Tyndall FRS [* see note below] was developing and perfecting his experiments with “Sensitive Flames”. He describes one such experiment in his book ‘Sounds’ (p. 238). In which he reads a passage of poetry from Edmund Spenser’s ‘Belphœbe the Huntress’ to the flame (which he calls The Vowel-flame) […]

SIL e-Books – the bees’ knees for rhyming jingles (linguistics study)

If you’re after in-depth information about hanky panky, tittle tattle, or even argy bargy then where better to look than the pages of SIL e-Books ? In particular, chapter 16 of ‘A Mosaic of languages and cultures: studies celebrating the career of Karl J. Franklin*‘ – ‘Helter skelter and ñugl ñagl: English and Kalam Rhyming […]

High quality literature production and mating success

“We hypothesized that the quantitative and qualitative literary output of famous writers would correlate with their number of mates, children, and grandchildren. We further assumed that writing lyric poetry would be more beneficial for mating success than nonpoetry because the former consists of more verbal handicaps (e.g., rhymes) than the latter and thus requires special […]

“Poetry and homeopathy: an exploration”

The field of Extradisciplinary Research, which does not yet exist, reached a zenith with this article published in the year 2006: “Poetry and homeopathy: an exploration” [Original Research Article], Jacqueline M. Mardon, Homeopathy, volume 95, issue 1, January 2006, pages 20-27. The author explains: “This paper explores a relationship between poetry and homeopathy…. Both poetry […]

Professor Simon Leonardo Altman

Professor Simon Leonardo Altman , Emeritus Fellow of Brasenose College, Oxford, is a mathematical physicist whose main work is on group theory, quaternions, and solid state. Since his retirement his main interests have been history and philosophy of science, poetry, especially science poetry, and some work on art theory, mainly concerning right-left problems. His website […]

Adams apples : examinations (part 1)

Apparently, the artist Norman Rockwell (1894-1978) was embarrassed by the size of his laryngeal prominence. Mr. Rockwell felt, it’s said, that his Adam’s apple protruded unduly, and had been known to take steps to cover it up in public. [pictured right] But possible academic implications of this have remained largely unstudied in scholarly circles – […]