The Public Domain Review

This is just an automatic copy of Public Domain Review blog.

Fallen Angels: Birds of Paradise in Early Modern Europe

Wednesday 4 April 2018 at 18:17

When birds of paradise first arrived to Europe, as dried specimens with legs and wings removed, they were seen in almost mythical terms — as angelic beings forever airborne, nourished by dew and the "nectar" of sunlight. Natalie Lawrence looks at how European naturalists of the 16th and 17th centuries attempted to make sense of these entirely novel and exotic creatures from the East.


The Egg Dance: From Peasant Village to Political Caricature

Thursday 29 March 2018 at 15:52

The egg dance was a traditional Easter game involving the laying down of eggs on the ground or floor and dancing among them whilst trying to break as few as possible.


The Diverting History of John Gilpin: Shewing how he Went Further than he Intended, and Came Safe Home Again (1782)

Tuesday 27 March 2018 at 16:20

A 1906 edition of William Cowper's famous ballad, illustrated with brilliantly comic woodcuts from Robert Seaver.


Pens and Needles: Reviving Book-Embroidery in Victorian England

Wednesday 21 March 2018 at 18:14

Fashionable in the 16th and 17th century, the art of embroidering unique covers for books saw a comeback in late 19th-century England, from the middle-class drawing room to the Arts and Crafts movement. Jessica Roberson explores the bibliomania, patriotism, and issues around gender so central to the revival.


Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Tanglewood Tales, illustrated by Virginia Frances Sterrett (1921)

Tuesday 20 March 2018 at 17:46

Beautiful 1920s edition of Nathaniel Hawthorne's version of Greek myths for children, with illustrations by Virginia Frances Sterrett.


The Drolatic Dreams of Pantagruel (1565)

Thursday 15 March 2018 at 17:17

Highlights from a book of 120 woodcuts depicting a series of fantastically bizarre and grotesque figures, reminiscent of some of the more inventive and twisted creations of Brueghel or Bosch.


Napoleon’s “Englich” Lessons

Wednesday 14 March 2018 at 16:25

While imprisoned on St Helena, Napoleon started learning English. One resident of the island called his English “the oddest in the world.”


“Alas, Poor YORICK!”: The Death and Life of Laurence Sterne

Wednesday 7 March 2018 at 17:30

On the 250th anniversary of Laurence Sterne's death, Ian Campbell Ross looks at the engagement with mortality so important to the novelist's groundbreaking work.


Drawings of Tetradons and Diodons (ca. 1838–42)

Tuesday 6 March 2018 at 18:44

Wonderful drawings of balloonfishes and pufferfishes made during, or shortly after, the United States Exploring Expedition, 1838-1842.


Adeline Harris Sears’ Autographs Quilt (1856–ca.1863)

Thursday 1 March 2018 at 17:49

Wonderful trompe l'oeil tumbling block design quilt incorporating signatures from such luminaries as Charles Dickens, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Rembrandt Peale, and Abraham Lincoln (one of eight American presidents represented).