Andrew Beattie, A Cultural History of the Alps (review)

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I bought this book because it came up in a Google Books search. That’s a first for me and, I think it was a mistake. Not that it’s a bad book, but it’s not the book I wanted. The search showed great promise — it returned a result showing that there was a chapter entitled […]

The Laughter of Monarchs (a brief quote from Mark Twain)

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This doesn’t have anything to do with Geneva this time, except for the fact that in the 1530s Geneva overthrew its prince and became an independent city state and republic. Genevans henceforth retained a deep and abiding distrust of monarchs. So on the occasion of a certain royal wedding and much fawning by those of […]

Secure Alternatives to Dropbox

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Dropbox has come under fire for not being as secure as we’ve perhaps been led to believe, but Secret Sync and Spider Oak promise more secure alternatives.

A Dwarf’s Life in Sixteenth-Century Geneva

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I’ve never done a search for information on dwarves in sixteenth-century Geneva and I’m not sure how much one would find in the Council and Consistory registers, but I did recently come across this illuminating tidbit from the life of Michel Die, a dwarf living in Geneva in 1550. Michel Dye, from Arsena, dwarf. This […]

John Muir, Antoine Saunier and the Perception of Mountains in Past Times

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I recently had the chance to visit Twenty Hill Hollow and environs with a couple dozen Yosemite naturalists, following in the footsteps of John Muir. It was in and around Twenty Hill Hollow that Muir spent much of his first year and a half in California and he dubbed that “delightful Hollow” the “Merced Yosemite […]

Let the Games End

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The Consistory members complained about rural governors (châtelains) who refused to remand people to the Consistory and then (loosely translated) Des Jeux. Item des jeux, qu’il disent sont si frequentz que les loix et bonne discipline [are ignored?], chose de tres mauvaise consequence. Arresté que les cries des jeux et quilles soyent exequutees sus les […]

EPA and DHA for vegetarians (Omega-3 Fatty Acids)

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Everyone is talking about Omega-3 fatty acids these days. They claim Omega-3s can help with heart and arterial health, improve mood, reduce inflammation and have other beneficial effects. Recent research has called some of this into question, but they are still considered both beneficial and commonly underconsumed, partly because foods that were once high in […]