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What is the earliest depiction of a crane?

What is the earliest depiction of a crane?

Various sources on the internet - such as Crane (machine), A History Of The Crane and The sky is the limit: human powered cranes and lifting devices - state that the Ancient Greeks were the inventors of the crane sometime during the 6th century BC.

Cranes were adopted and improved upon by the Romans; the image below is the earliest depiction of a crane I've been able to find.

"… part of the rich decoration of the tomb of the Haterii, a family of builders who built their own tomb along the ancient via Labicana in the early years of the 2nd century A.D." (my highlighting) Source: museivaticani

This appears to be a treadwheel crane and the it's the only depiction of crane from ancient times I've found - more than 600 years after the crane was invented.

Are there any earlier depictions, for example in reliefs or vases or murals? If not, are there any other pre-medieval depictions of cranes?

The Roman builder Lucceius Peculiaris would be another pre-medieval example.

Lucceius ; Peculiaris ; Ex Biso ; Redemptor ; Fecit ; Prosceni.

Unfortunately it is apparently even a bit younger than the example from the question, 3rd century:

Object Information - general
Presently located: Capua, Italien, IT, Museo Provinciale Campano - Place information is Aufbewahrungsort - Ort im Gazetteer Provenience: Italien, Capua / Santa Maria Capua Vetere, in den Ruinen des Theaters Category/Culture Area/Function: Inschrift; Relief; Weihung Belongs to monument: nein Initiated/Commissioned by: Lucceius Peculiaris redemptor prosceni cultural sphere: römisch Dating: spätrepublikanisch. - after: W. Fuchs - Ende/spätes 3. Cent. n. Chr. - Argument: Vergleich u. a. mit Köpfen vom Galeriusbogen sowie Gewändern auf dem Galerius- und Konstantinsbogen / after: G. Zimmer -

3631: Votivrelief des Lucceius Peculiaris Capua, Museo Provinciale Campano (larger version)

The illustrated manuscript Manuscript - Vat.lat.3225 also caled Vergilius Vaticanus from the 4th century contains scenes from "building a city"

The scene described in more detailed may mean:

Aeneas and Achats see Carthage under construction (f.13r); Aeneas in front of Didon (f.16r); Venus sends to Dido the Love in the form of Ascanius (f.17r). // {{Information |Description={{en|1=Folio 13r of the Vatican Vergil (Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, Cod. Vat. lat. 3225). Aeneas finds Carthage. Illustration of text from the Iliad.}} |Source=Vatican Vergil (Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, Cod. Vat. lat. 3 Src: French WP and WikiMedia Commons

Romans are great, Greeks are even greater? But they are youngster. As this is about the oldest of these devices, we usually have to look into Mesopotamia or Egypt?

There we find

This relief from Nineveh shows a man with a shaduf (A bucket attached to a long beam, weighted at one end, and balanced so that the bucket will rise easily.). He is changing the course of a stream to help Sennacherib's workers move a giant sculpture.
Alabaster wall panel relief in two parts: showing a winged bull for Sennacherib's palace leaving the quarry. The bull, roughly finished, has been placed on a sledge which advances on rollers, hauled by prisoners of war. Four overseers, two with trumpets, direct the operation from the top of the colossus. On the left, the king stands in hand-drawn chariot. Some men clear rocks from the track; others pull on a long lever, wedged into place to shift the load when it sticks. Below, men use buckets, attached to counterpoised arms to raise water and divert a stream. From Gypsum wall panel relief in two parts: showing a winged bull for Sennacherib's palace leaving the quarry.

Ruler: Sennacherib, Neo-Assyrian, Date 700BC-692BC

This type is believed by some to have been used in Nubian pyramid construction.

In any case:

One of the earliest versions of the crane to be developed was the shaduf, first used to move water in Egypt about four thousand years ago. The shaduf consists of a long, pivoting beam balanced on a vertical support. A heavy weight is attached to one end of the beam and a bucket to the other. The user pulls the bucket down to the water supply, fills it, then allows the weight to pull the bucket up. The beam is then rotated to the desired position and the bucket is emptied. The shaduf is still used in rural areas of Egypt and India.

And from Augustan times

Construction work was demanding. The expanded use of large pieces of marble and other heavy stones like granite necessitated ever-larger lifting apparatuses. Made of wood, there are scant material traces of these apparatuses, but they do appear in art and literature. A terracotta plaque from Via Cassia shows a general in armor standing amid representations of a military trophy, flying victory, and a kneeling representation identified as Roma. On either side are smaller figures operating wrench cranes to lift squared stones for massive walls (Schäfer 435-436; Figure 6) . Although interpretations of this scene vary, obviously, the inclusion of a building act assumes familiarity and potent meaning for construction. Similarly, a carving from Capua commemorating a vision by Lucceius Peculiaris, possibly a contractor for the Augustan rebuilding of the amphitheater, shows a hoist and treadwheel crane lifting a monolithic column (Sear 7). Vitruvius devoted an entire chapter to hoisting machines which he associates with a certain magnificence (10.1.2).

Diane Favro: "Reading Augustan Rome: Materiality as Rhetoric In Situ", Advances in the History of Rhetoric, 20:2, 180-195, DOI: 10.1080/15362426.2017.1326325

What is the earliest depiction of a crane? - History

A rtists throughout history have drawn inspiration from the birds. Part-bird, part-human forms have frequently been used to depict either supernatural phenomena or enhanced human abilities, especially those of vision (bird heads) and speed (bird wings). Perhaps the oldest artistic representation of birds or parts of birds is a prehistoric bird-headed man dating from 15,000 to 10,000 B.C. It is painted on one of the walls of the Lascaux Cave in France -- the often-described treasure-house of Stone Age art.

Ancient Egyptians considered birds "winged souls" they occasionally used them to symbolize particular gods. The symbol for Horus, the god of the sun (and the local god of the Upper Nile), was the head or body of a falcon. In a statue of King Chefren from Giza on his throne (c. 2500 B.C.), the king is not seated alone -- the falcon of Horus is perched behind his head, and its wings enfold the king's shoulders. The bird appears to be watching over the king and his realm. Raptors subsequently have often been used to represent national power -- right down to the national symbol of the United States. (The founding fathers, we would like to think, did not recognize the Bald Eagle's habit of scavenging dead fish and feeding at dumps.) Whereas predatory birds are often used in art to symbolize power, doves (frequent prey to raptors) often depict peace.

Symbolic winged chimeras like Pegasus, the flying horse, are recurrent. The power of the sphinx, indicated by the merging of a human head onto a lion's body, is sometimes augmented by the wings of a bird. If the Great Sphinx had wings, they are long gone, but those of the winged Sphinx of Naxos (500 B.C.) remain resplendent. Both victory and liberty continue to be associated with bird wings. They are, for example, the outstanding feature of the renowned Hellenistic marble sculpture the "Winged Victory" of Samothrace (200 B.C.). That partly airborne goddess, in turn, became the prototype for countless modem political paintings and cartoons.

Goldfinches, which appear commonly in illuminated manuscripts in the Middle Ages, were associated with the Christ child. In southern Italy and Sicily goldfinches were commonly released at the time a figure representing the risen Christ appeared at Easter celebrations. Could the predilection of goldfinches for prickly thistles have recalled the crown of thorns and thus led to their association with Christ? During the Renaissance most paintings were religious and bird-winged angels were common. It would seem that the countless depictions of the Annunciation differ most in the use of wings from different bird species.

Native Americans living on the northwest coast of our continent were consummate bird artists. They used stylized depictions of ravens (which were considered gods and played a central role in their religion), eagles, and oystercatchers, etc., in carved masks and rattles as well as on painted screens, drums, and boxes. While the symbolic use of birds (and parts of their anatomy) is ancient, depictions of bird biology are by no means a modem invention. For instance, a stylized tick bird picking parasites from the back of a bull is painted on a piece of pottery dating to the late Mycenaean, more than a thousand years before Christ, and an early English book contains a picture of an owl being mobbed.

The realistic depiction of birds in nature become increasingly evident in 18th-century Western and Eastern paintings, but illustrating bird biology was not elevated to its current position as an art form until the work of John James Audubon in the early 1800s. Audubon was among the first artists to accurately portray bird biology and certainly the first to consistently paint his subjects with such drama as to establish himself as a significant figure in art history as well. Reproductions of his life-size watercolors were printed in the famous "Double Elephant Folio" of the Birds of America. The outlines were printed from huge engraved copper plates, and the coloring done expertly by hand. The pictures often illustrated aspects of bird biology: varying plumages, nesting, feeding, defending against predators, displaying, and so on. Less than 130 of the 200 original hand-colored sets of 435 plates have survived intact. The value placed on them as works of art can be judged from the prices commanded by the individual plates from sets that have been broken up. At an auction in late 1985 many plates, including the Flamingo, the Trumpeter Swan, the Gyrfalcons, and the Snowy Owls, sold for over $25,000 each. Top dollar, $35,200, was paid for an example of Audubon's portrayal of a group of seven long-gone Carolina Parakeets.

Bird vocalizations, of course, often figure in works of literature, especially poetry, as the words of Milton, Keats, Shelley, and others about the songs of nightingales remind us. The call of the European Cuckoo has been featured in the chorus of at least one lullaby. Perhaps the most widespread transference of themes from the avian world to the world of human art has occurred in the dance. The peoples of the northwestern coast have exceptional raven and oystercatcher dances. The courtship rituals of cranes are mimicked in the dances of African tribes, the Ainu of Japan, Australian Aborigines, and Native Americans. One might even imagine that cranes have, directly or indirectly, influenced ballet in much the same way Peter Tchaikovsky was influenced by swans more than a century ago when he composed Swan Lake.

The symbolic use of birds continues today unabated. For example, many television advertisements feature the Bald Eagle or assorted hawks to suggest patriotism, dependability, speed, or machismo. The "proud" peacock is the symbol of a major network. Film clips of birds flying, feeding, singing, and courting are also frequently used in nature and public affairs programs to indicate the peaceful, primeval conditions that are rapidly disappearing from our planet. Bird art seems to be getting more popular as the birds themselves start to disappear. Modern bird paintings, prints, and sculptures are in much demand, especially as the works of Audubon and other avian "old masters" are unavailable to most. Children raised with the image of an all-knowing "Big Bird" may well see birds differently than their parents, raised with Woody Woodpecker and Daffy Duck, did, but it seems certain that birds and their biology will, in one way or another, remain embedded in the arts and in the human psyche for a long time to come.

Copyright ® 1988 by Paul R. Ehrlich, David S. Dobkin, and Darryl Wheye.

History of Cranes in Chinese Art

Since ancient times, the Chinese have been exceptionally creative in using various living, non-living and imaginary objects to represent abstract ideas. They have a symbol for everything, including life, death and longevity. One glance at Chinese art and carpets can educate on the myriads of Chinese symbols. Among the most popular and widely used symbols are the ones for longevity. They include bamboo, cicada, peach, gourd, pine, deer and crane.

Cranes, or herons as they are also referred to as, play an important role in Chinese mythology. In Chinese culture, the crane is venerated as the prince of all feathered creatures and thus has a legendary status. Embodying longevity and peace, it is the second most favored bird symbol after the phoenix. Throughout the imperial times, crane motifs were used on the robes of civil officials to depict their ranks. Because of its ability to fly high and over long distances, its wings were used as an amulet for protection against exhaustion.

There are four types of cranes in Chinese mythology: White, black, blue and yellow. But rather than the color, the setting and postures of the swan are more important. A crane that is shown with its wings stretched out and one leg raised stands for longevity. When it is shown under a pine tree near a spotted deer, it symbolizes a prolonged life. One that is shown among peony flowers stands for prosperity and longevity while one that is shown with lotus flowers symbolizes purity and longevity.

If a Chinese crane is shown flying towards the sun, it signifies a desire for social advancement. A crane that is shown perched on a rock and looking at the sun stands for an important authority who can see everything. Two cranes walking or flying together is the ultimate symbol of longevity.

Since cranes fly in the clear blue sky above the dusty earth, they are also considered symbols of cleanliness and purity. When a Taoist priest is on his deathbed, people say that he is turning into a feathered crane. Many Chinese still believe that cranes carry their spirit to heaven after they die. With such a revered and legendary status, no wonder cranes appear consistently in Chinese art and carpets.

The depiction of cranes in Chinese art and antique carpets are almost entirely based on their mythological significance and symbolism. But there is a slight difference between the way they are depicted in art and carpet. While in art they are usually shown alone, in a pair or in a group in a beautiful natural setting, like a lake or waterfall, in carpets they may be shown with other symbols such as a lion.

One of the more popular depictions of cranes in Chinese carpets is of a red-crested crane flying among the clouds and roses, symbolizing longevity, wisdom and nobility. Another popular depiction is a crane hovering above a deer grazing under a pine tree. Two cranes dancing on the ground or flying together are also very common. In whichever scenes cranes are depicted, their symbolism in Chinese art and carpets is always important.

This art blog about the meaning and symbolism of Cranes in Chinese Art was published by Nazmiyal Antique Rugs

Ancient Pets

Archaeologists have long known that dogs were domesticated during the Neolithic period. Dog bones dating back roughly ten thousand years have been found near human settlements, said Zeder. Evidence that dogs aided hunting missions has been less immediately obvious.

Robert Losey, a professor at the University of Alberta, is an expert on ancient relationships between humans and animals, particularly with dogs. He's found evidence of 10,000-year-old dog remains in Siberia, but he is unsure of the exact role these dogs played. The remains, he said, were deliberately buried, with the skeletons fully intact—meaning they likely wouldn't have been a food source.

"There's been ethnographic work showing being aided by dogs greatly improved the productivity of hunting," he said. His hunch is that dog domestication coincided with, or was aided by, humans who benefitted from hunting with the amiable canines. He thinks it's plausible that the art does show the dogs being led on leashes.

"The emotional attachments people have to dogs are very, very old," he said. (Learn more about how dogs may have domesticated us.)

Guagnin noted in her study that the level of detail used to depict the dogs indicates the artist or artists may have had a close bond with the animals.

While Zeder is skeptical of Guagnin's claims of how old the carvings are, she agrees that the artistry shows those strong bonds.

"What strikes me about the rock art is the degree of detail. The different markings of the dogs, the common shoulder stripe, the white spots. The level of artistic reality and detail is really remarkable," said Zeder.

Guagnin and her team plan to return to Jubbah, where they think more Neolithic sites await exploration, dating as far back as 10,000 BC. They'll search for physical evidence that dogs were in fact present in the region back then.

Earliest Depiction of 'Fiery Serpent' Found in Medieval Painting

Italian researchers examining a medieval painting may have found the earliest visual depiction of dracunculiasis, a horrifying parasitic infection in which a worm up to 3 feet long creeps out of the skin.

Currently endemic to areas in Chad, Ethiopia, Mali and South Sudan, the disease is transmitted to people who drink water infested with water fleas that are in the Cyclops genus, and that contain larvae of the guinea worm (Dracunculus medinensis). One year after the person ingests the contaminated water, a spaghetti-like worm 2 to 3 feet (0.6 to 1 meter) long erupts from a blistered area of the person's skin &mdash usually in the lower part of the leg, according to he World Health Organization.

To relieve the pain and burning feeling that the worm causes when it erupts, the victims seek out water, prompting the worm to discharge its larvae, which starts the whole cycle over again. [The 10 Most Diabolical and Disgusting Parasites]

According to a study to be published in a forthcoming issue of the Journal of Infection, dracunculiasis clearly appears for the first time in a 15th-century altarpiece on display at the Pinacoteca di Brera (Painting Gallery), located in southern Italy's Puglia region.

The artwork is considered a rare example of Late Gothic painting in Puglia and depicts St. Roch, a 14th-century French pilgrim who is said to have healed victims of the plague, and came down with it himself.

"Indeed, St. Roch is typically represented with a bubo on the upper thigh," paleopathologist Raffaele Gaeta, at the University of Pisa, Italy, told Live Science.

The painting in Bari, showing the saint as a bearded man with long, curly blonde hair, is no exception. The anonymous painter portrayed St. Roch with a swelling on the left thigh, made visible by a rolled-down sock.

"However, the altarpiece adds a new, realistic detail: a white, thin filament comes out of the lesion and almost reaches the knee," Gaeta said.

He noted that art historians wrongly identified this element as a long drop of pus emerging from the infected wound. [25 Grisly Archaeological Discoveries]

"We believe instead that the painter portrayed an ancient case of dracunculiasis, an infectious disease caused by a nematode worm, the Dracunculus medinensis, well known in antiquity," Gaeta and colleagues Fabrizio Bruschi and Valentina Giuffra wrote in their study.

Dracunculiasis has plagued humankind for thousands of years. The Bible's Old Testament, dating to 1450 B.C., refers to the worm, according to the Carter Center. It is mentioned in the Egyptian medical Ebers Papyrus, dating from 1550 B.C., which suggested extracting the worm from the body by winding it around a stick &mdash a method still used today.

Further evidence for the worm's existence in ancient Egypt was provided in the 1970s: A calcified guinea worm was found in the abdominal cavity of a 3,000-year-old mummy.

Parasitologists believe the biblical "fiery serpents" that attacked the Israelites who had escaped Egypt might have been guinea worms. The infection would have been widespread in the Middle East at the time of the exodus, as it was until recently.

"The worm doesn't kill, but leaves the victim in disabling misery," Gaeta said.

"The parasite could have earned its nickname 'fiery serpent' because it causes excruciating burning pain as it bursts through the skin," he added.

Although the disease is not documented in Italy, it is possible that the anonymous painter noticed the parasite in the wound of some traveler who arrived in Bari, which was an important port for people traveling to the East, particularly Syria and Palestine.

"He then added the long and thin white filament that comes out of the leg as a note of extreme realism," Gaeta said.

According to Francesco Galassi, a paleopathologist at Zurich University's Institute of Evolutionary Medicine, the research "offers room for a more general reflection on the importance of prevention of infectious diseases for international travelers in the modern world."

"I find it rather captivating that the authors hypothesize that this disease might have been portrayed on an individual coming to Bari from regions where, unlike the Italian Peninsula, the condition was endemic," Galassi told Live Science.

As a result of a 30-year campaign led by the Carter Center, a charity set up by former president Jimmy Carter, dracunculiasis will likely be the second human disease in history after smallpox to be eradicated. It will be the first parasitic disease to be wiped out and the first disease to be eradicated without the use of a drug or vaccine.

In 2016, only 25 cases of guinea-worm disease were reported globally, down from an estimated 3.5 million cases in 1986, according to the WHO's Global Health Observatory.

Early Jesus Depiction May Have Been Discovered In Ancient Egyptian Structure

A team of Catalan archaeologists have discovered what they believe could be one of the oldest depictions of Jesus made by the earliest Coptic Christians in Egypt.

The researchers uncovered an underground structure in a series of buried tombs that date to the 6th and 7th centuries. Among the Coptic, or early Christian, images painted on the structure's walls was what lead researcher Josep Padró described as "the figure of a young man, with curly hair, dressed in a short tunic and with his hand raised as if giving a blessing."

Photo courtesy of the University of Barcelona.

"We could be dealing with a very early image of Jesus Christ," Padró told La Vanguardia.

The researchers removed 45 tons of rock to access walls where the painting was found, which are situated among several sites Padró has been excavating for the last 20 years.

The drawing is under lockdown while researchers begin to translate the inscriptions surrounding it.

In 2011, archaeologists working near the Sea of Galilee discovered a 2,000-year-old booklet with what was then thought to be one of the earliest depictions of Jesus. The booklet reportedly bore the inscription ‘Saviour of Israel’, but its authenticity was later questioned.

CORRECTION: A previous headline of this article incorrectly suggested the depiction found in Egypt was the earliest known it is among the earliest, but other images thought to be of Jesus predate it. The article has also been updated to reflect doubts about the authenticity of the 'Savior of Galilee' booklet, and a reference to the tomb of a scribe has been removed to clarify that the image was discovered in an unidentified structure.

Mrs. America, the new FX miniseries from creator Dahvi Waller, tells the story of the women’s liberation movement through the compelling and contentious women who shaped it. The nine-episode historical drama, whose first three episodes are now streaming on Hulu, focuses primarily on the political struggle surrounding the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment and the unexpected backlash led by Phyllis Schlafly, the conservative “sweetheart of the silent majority.”

The miniseries follows leaders on both sides of the debate, with Schlafly fighting against the amendment and National Women’s Political Caucus co-founders Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan, Shirley Chisholm, Bella Abzug, and Jill Ruckelshaus fighting for it. Weaving together multiple storylines, both personal and political, the show offers a nuanced portrait of the battles over the women’s rights movement in the early 1970s. However, as a disclaimer that introduces each episode notes: “Some characters in the program are fictional and some scenes and dialogue are invented for creative and storyline purposes.” So what’s real, and what’s invented? We consulted the history books to break down the series’s first three episodes.

Just as in real life, Phyllis Schlafly, the show’s prim, blond antihero, built her career advocating for traditional women’s roles and mobilizing conservative opposition to the women’s liberation movement. As portrayed by Cate Blanchett, who is also an executive producer on the show, Schlafly proves a consistently underestimated, fearsomely intelligent character who’s full of contradictions.

When the show opens, the Illinois mother of six is preparing to go on a talk show to discuss a book she has written about national defense. Though not widely known, the real Schlafly, who died in 2016 at the age of 92, did indeed spend much of her early career studying and writing about issues related to national security. In her 1965 book Strike From Space, co-written with Rear Adm. Chester Ward, Schlafly notes that during World War II she worked as “a ballistics gunner and technician at the largest ammunition plant in the world.” She remained an active political voice on the Cold War and national defense throughout her life, though that part of her career was largely eclipsed by her role in holding back the women’s liberation movement.

Throughout her career, Schlafly had political ambitions, which the show references in Schlafly’s conversations with her husband. She ran for the United States House of Representatives in 1952 and again in 1970, though she lost both elections in her solidly Democratic Illinois district. Though she ran on conservative issues, was staunchly anti-Communist, and thought even Richard Nixon was too moderate on civil rights, Schlafly, it seems, didn’t become seriously interested in women’s issues until the 1970s. For most of the first episode, Schlafly appears to have little interest in the ERA or women’s liberation, saying “there are so many more important things … like national security.” This seems to be an accurate portrayal of the real Schlafly’s views up until 1970. According to her obituary in the New York Times, “Mrs. Schlafly hardly noticed the Equal Rights Amendment when it was first debated in Congress.” It wasn’t until 1971, when the amendment had already passed the House, that she took up arms against it, founded STOP ERA (as on the show, STOP was an acronym for Stop Taking Our Privileges), and appointed herself the chairwoman.

The show’s depiction of Schlafly’s rise to political power is also quite loyal to historical records from the time. With the publication of her conservative newsletter the Phyllis Schlafly Report, she begins a grassroots campaign to oppose the ratification of the ERA. She argued that the amendment would have hurt women rather than helping them, by eliminating such protections as the right to alimony and exemption from the draft. The show eventually acknowledges that much of this rhetoric was exaggerated fearmongering, but at times it seems to sand down some of her rougher edges in order to make her more sympathetic to modern viewers, such as when it depicts her discomfort with some of STOP ERA’s more openly racist members. In real life, Schlafly was among the “moral conservatives” who, at the Republican National Convention in 1960, opposed the party’s plan for “aggressive action” against segregation.

In the show, Fred Schlafly (John Slattery) is portrayed as the sort of benignly patronizing male figure that has become familiar from period dramas like Mad Men, in which Slattery also starred. He is handsome, successful, charming, self-interested, and condescending. Though Fred claims to be supportive of his wife’s political ambitions, he privately expresses reservations because he fears her work will interfere with her primary responsibilities as a wife and mother. In Episode 1, he all but asks her not to run for Congress again, claiming it would “break up the family,” and she acquiesces. It’s unclear whether this was indeed the private dynamic in the Schlaflys’ marriage, but, whatever the reason, it is true that she didn’t run for office again.

In an interview with Vanity Fair, Schlafly’s daughter Anne Schlafly Cori claimed that the show’s depiction of her parents’ marital tension is entirely fictitious: “My father and mother had a really wonderful relationship,” Cori told Vanity Fair. “I think the joy that they had in marriage formed a lot of their viewpoint of the roles of men and women together. Their marriage was happy because it was a meeting of minds. Intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, they were on the same page, and they complemented one another.”

Early episodes depict Schlafly repeatedly being belittled, ignored, and harassed in her political dealings by men less qualified and knowledgeable than she is. At one point, she is asked to take notes in a meeting as though she were a secretary. While it’s unclear whether the specific details of these interactions are based in fact, the treatment does track with what we know of the culture around women in the workplace at the time.

Despite acceding to her husband’s wishes, Schlafly establishes significant political power through her grassroots campaigning and remains something of a contradiction. Certainly Schlafly’s detractors (including, as depicted in Mrs. America’s fourth episode, Gloria Steinem) accused her of hypocrisy, noting that while she was arguing that a woman’s place was in the home, she was hitting the road as a speaker, newsletter editor, and activist.

In the show, Schlafly becomes politically interested in the ERA after her friend Alice (Sarah Paulson), a housewife and homemaker, expresses fears that the amendment would eliminate benefits like alimony and Social Security and result in women being drafted into the military. Alice later becomes an animated supporter of Schlafly’s conservative campaign. While Alice does not appear to be based on any single historical figure, she can be seen as an amalgamation created to represent the fears and beliefs of many conservative women at the time.

Like her or not, Schlafly was an effective political organizer. Her grassroots campaign, composed largely of conservative women and homemakers, was unexpectedly successful in halting the ratification of the ERA. The show accurately depicts Schlafly’s campaign tactics, which relied heavily on letter writing and employed traditional symbols of the American housewife to inspire political support.

Ancient paintings

Another painting found some years ago at Shivta, in the southernmost of its three ruined churches, shows Christ at his transfiguration — another key event described in the Christian gospels, which are thought to have been written in the first century after his death.

That painting, too, is heavily eroded it shows only an outline of the figure of Christ and a single eyebrow.

But the painting on the ceiling of the northern baptistery — a building used for baptisms and containing the baptismal font — shows most of the face of Christ, as a young man with short, curly hair. [See Images of Jesus' House and Nazareth Artifacts]

The iconography of Christ with short hair was common throughout the east of the Byzantine Empire, Maayan-Fanar explained, especially in Egypt and the Syria-Palestine region. But it was eventually displaced by Byzantine images of Christ with long hair, which remains a common portrayal today.

Christ was also shown as a very young man, she said, because his baptism in the Jordan symbolized a "new birth." For the same reason, the painting shows a larger figure of John the Baptist, who is said to have presided at Christ's baptism, according to the Christian Gospels.

In their study of the baptistery painting, Maayan-Fanar and her colleagues describe the portrait of Christ as that of a youth with "short curly hair, a prolonged face, large eyes and an elongated nose." It represents a sixth-century convention of Christ's appearance, rather than his actual appearance, which is not described in the Gospels: "It would be wonderful, but how would we know?" she said.

Depictions of the Lower Class

Victorian portrayals of lower- and working-class children in both urban and rural contexts were somewhat different. The lower-class female might be incredibly rosy-cheeked, tidy, and sweet, whether as a farm lass, peasant, or street vendor. All such girls were perceived essentially as objects of pity or amusement, with little sense of the sordid and oppressive social conditions that impoverished children endured. Boy urchins, whether in the pages of Punch magazine or in Royal Academy paintings, were sanitized into healthy, scruffy, and unthreatening children.

The dead or dying child appeared frequently in Victorian era paintings as well, reflecting the high mortality rates (compared with modern statistics) among all classes. Many scenarios𠄻y George Hicks, Thomas Faed, and Thomas Brooks�ture parental bedside vigils in which the need for Christian faith and fortitude are endorsed. As in the literary realm, the picturesque appeal of the helpless orphan, especially vulnerable female ones𠄺s in the paintings of Emily Mary Osborn, George Storey, and Philip Calderon𠄺lso was favored by Victorian audiences.

Modern audiences have been inculcated with Victorian notions of childhood by a variety of sources, from an endless proliferation of Kate Greenaway-decorated items to contemporary magazines that combine nostalgia for the past with gauzy finery and images of female decorativeness, passivity, leisure, and conspicuous consumerism. The Victorian literary characters Alice, of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and PETER PAN, of James Barrie's 1904 novel Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Would Not Grow Up, have earned permanent places in the public imagination, due to DISNEY films and to the enduring appeal of the girl seeking authority over her fantasies and the boy escaping the responsibilities of adulthood by refusing to grow up.

What is the earliest depiction of a crane? - History

First Robots - in Literature

The Steam Man, Hadaly, and Tik-Tok

  1. Edward S. Ellis' The Steam Man of the Prairies (1868)
    A science-fictional dime-novel, first published in Irwin's American Novels # 45 in 1868.
    If the novel's title character can be considered a 'robot', then this short novel was the first portrayal in literature of a 'robot' or nonsentient automaton - called the Steam Man. The 'mechanical' metal man, a steam-boiler used for locomotion to pull a carriage, was made of iron and was approximately 10 feet tall. It was constructed by teenaged Johnny Brainerd, the inventor in the novel.
  2. Auguste de Villiers de l'lsle Adam's L'Eve Futur (1886, Fr.) (aka The Future Eve, or The Eve of the Future)
    A published book - a classic science-fiction tale that popularized the term "android." Allegedly, the French novelist was inspired to write his book after viewing Edison's display of inventions at the International Electrical Exhibition in Paris in 1881. The story was serialized in 1884 and published as a book in 1886.
    It told about a brilliant British alchemist (modeled after Thomas Edison) who offered to create a mechanical, robotic facsimile of his friend Lord Ewald's beloved fiancee - a stage performer and singer named Alicia Clary. The misogynistic alchemist's goal was to create a perfect and natural, electrical, and mechanical variation of Alicia, who would bring Ewald true happiness - without female personality problems or other physical human imperfections that were causing Ewald to contemplate suicide. The android (andreide), Hadaly, was indistinguishable from Alicia. It had a phonographic apparatus to realistically reproduce Alicia's voice, and was supernaturally endowed with the spirit of Sowana, Edison's mystical assistant. The 'robot' or creation was not a real female "but an angel, not a mistress but a lover, more than reality, an ideal."
  3. L. Frank Baum's Ozma of Oz (1907)
    The third book of Baum's Oz series. It featured the round-bodied Tik-Tok, made of burnished copper and with jointed arms and legs (with polished caps on them), and requiring its inner springs to be wound in order to function. The card on his back read:

The Mechanical Statue and the Ingenious Servant (1907)

Mechanical Men

(Survival status unknown, although a Vitagraph paper print extract or fragment is reported to exist)

This very early, Vitagraph one-reel (or half-reel) film from director J. Stuart Blackton, was the first American film with 'robot' predecessors - called mechanical men (also known as automatons).

In the slapstick comedic story, a sculptor had hand-built a "mechanical statue" which danced when wound up. It was bought by a customer who took it home. There, a house-servant started it up, but the statue ran away. The "ingenious" servant was able to deceive the master of the house, pretending to be the 'mechanical' robot.

The Fairylogue and Radio-Plays (1908)

Tik-Tok (The Machine Man)

Tik-Tok first appeared in film in The Fairylogue and Radio-Plays (1908), presented in Baum's live travelogue stage presentation (with Tik-Tok - The Machine Man, portrayed by Wallace Illington). The multi-media presentation was a mix of live-action, hand-tinted 'magic lantern' slides, film, and Baum's own narration.

The cast of The Fairylogue and Radio-Plays (1908)
Is Tik-Tok on Baum's left?

[Note: Tik-Tok reappeared much later as the mustached Tik-Tok in Disney's film Return to Oz (1985). See later entry.]

Early 'Robot' Films in the Silent Era

In many cases in these early 'robot' films, the automatons (or automated thinking machines, often functioning as robots or servants) could prove to be dangerous or deadly after running amok, as in Frankenstein (1931).

Early depictions of "mechanical men" included these short films (often comedies and usually one-reel) - sometimes reflecting the encroachment of machinery and the increasing fear of industrialization:

  • An Animated Doll (1908), from Essanay
  • An Extraordinary Duel (1909, Fr.), , from Pathé Frères, about two dueling men (one black, one white) who kept destroying each other, but then were reanimated and rebuilt to continue fighting
  • The Rubber Man (1909), from the Lubin Company, about a mechanical creation that ran amok through a town and village before being short-circuited by being doused in a water trough
  • Dr. Smith's Automaton (1910, Fr.), from Pathé Frères
  • A Mechanical Husband (1910, UK), about a girl who objected to her father's choice of a man and fell in love with an automaton
  • The Automatic Motorist (1911, UK), a comedic fantasy take-off of Georges Melies' A Trip to the Moon (1902), and a mix of live-action and stop-motion animation, in which a mechanical chauffeur drove a newly-wed couple on a honeymoon trip to Saturn
  • The Inventor's Secret (1911), from Biograph (and writer/director Mack Sennett), about a cop (Dan, portrayed by Sennett) who set out to retrieve a missing girl and collect a $500 reward, but mistook an automatic doll for the child
  • The Electric Leg (1912, UK), about the invention of a primitive prosthetic or electric leg for disabled individuals by Professor Bound, but for one amputee, the artificial leg had a mind of its own he lost control of it and it took a man into a girls' dormitory
  • The House of Mystery (1912, Fr.), from Pathé Frères, with a mechanical policeman
  • Sammy's Automaton (1914, Fr.), about Sammy thoughtlessly turning a lifeless mannequin-dummy into an uncontrollable, lascivious automaton
  • The Automatic House (1915), from Empress, about an automatic maid in a "automatic house"
  • The Mechanical Man (1915), from Universal, about a "mechanical man" (Walter Frederick Trevallion, as Phroso)
  • Hoffmanns Erzählungen (aka Tales of Hoffman) (1916, Ger.), was told in three stories/parts about the hero's past loves in the first, the hero young Hoffmann (Kurt Wolowsky) fell in love with a life-sized automaton, a living marionette named Olympia (Alice Scheel-Hechy) he had been duped by Coppelius (Friedrich Kühne) into wearing a pair of magic eyeglasses that made inanimate objects come to life when the deception was revealed, the automaton was torn to pieces
  • Homunculus (1916, Ger.), an expressionistic, six-part serial about diabolical, mad scientist Dr. Hansen's (Adolf Paul) (and his assistant Edgar Rodin's (Friedrich Kühne)) creation of a bitter, soulless, artificial man, the Homunculus (Olaf Fønss), that became tyrannical
  • A Clever Dummy (1917) , from Mack Sennett and Triangle/Keystone, about an inventor named Samuel Tinker (James Donnelly) who created a remote-controlled mechanical robot dummy modeled after the building's janitor (silent film comedian Ben Turpin known for his crossed-eyes) then to further romance, the janitor traded places with the dummy during a vaudeville stage performance to get closer to a woman in the show with whom he was smitten.

The Golem (1920, Ger.) (aka Der Golem)


Paul Wegener directed three influential adaptations of the Golem legend by Gustav Meyrinck:

  • Der Golem (1914, Ger.) (aka The Monster of Fate)
  • Der Golem Und Die Tanzerin (1917, Ger.) (aka The Golem and the Dancer) - notably the first horror film sequel
  • Der Golem (1920, Ger.) (aka The Golem: or How He Came Into the World), with Karl Freund as cinematographer

The first expressionistic film was based upon Central European myths and influenced later 'Frankenstein' monster films in the early 1930s with themes of a creator losing control of his creation. The Golem, played by Wegener himself, was an ancient clay figure from Hebrew mythology that was brought to life by Rabbi Loew's magic amulet to defend and save the Jews in 16th century Prague from a pogrom threatened by Rudolf II of Habsburg.

The giant man-made, clay creature roamed and lumbered through the Jewish ghetto of medieval Prague to protect it from persecution.

The Master Mystery (1919 or 1920) (aka The Houdini Serial, and Le Maitre du Mystere)

Q, or The Automaton

Director Burton King's and Harry Grossman's independently-produced serial (with 15 episodes, some of which are lost) was made by Studio Pathe in France.

It starred magician and trick escapist artist Harry Houdini as heroic Justice Department/secret service agent Quentin Locke who battled a threatening and criminal international cartel/corporation (the Patent Company).

The serial featured a huge, mechanical, evil robot named Q or The Automaton (Floyd Buckley), the cartel's protective robot-servant. The criminal mastermind had a goofy-looking face and a barrel-shaped pelvis. Houdini exposed the robot as a human in disguise.

This film had one of the earliest (if not the first) on-screen theatrical representation of a traditional robot.

The Mechanical Man (1921, It.) (aka L&rsquoUomo Meccanico)

Mechanical Man

Writer/director Andre Deed's short silent film (only parts of which survive, in a fragmented form - in total, about a third of the original 80 minutes in length) featured a giant, super-powered, 9-10 foot-tall, colossal evil "mechanical" robot, designed to commit robberies and create mayhem.

It was programmed and remotely-controlled by evil villainess adventuress Mado (Valentina Frascaroli) to cause severe damage with its fiery, acetylene blow-torch hands and its massive bulk.

The lumbering robot had headlights for eyes, and had the capability of running at high speed.

The film's finale featured a climactic battle at a masked ball in the Opera House between the first monstrous robot and a second mechanical robot, specifically created (with similar specifications) to destroy the first one.

"Fake" Maria

This future dystopic silent film from director Fritz Lang featured one of the earliest robots (and also female!), a great iconic image. At the time, most robots were either asexual or male. The story was set in the year 2026 in the city of Metropolis.

The luxurious, futuristic, Art Deco city - an industrial world with skyscrapers and bridges, was divided or stratified into an upper, elite, privileged class of powerful industrialists and a subterranean, nameless, oppressed and exploited, ant-like worker/slave class. An elite, privileged ruling technocracy, led by Joh Fredersen (Alfred Abel), was run on the back-breaking labor of underground masses of toiling workers who ran the machines.

The children were cared for by the beautiful heroine Maria (Brigitte Helm), who brought them to a forbidden artificial grotto of the ruling class. There, her beauty overwhelmed Freder (Gustav Frohlich), the son of the ruler of Metropolis, and he fell in love with her. When he went searching for her, he became appalled by the horrors of the working world and the waste of life. After discovering the workers' clandestine meeting led by Maria, Freder's controlling, glacial father conspired with archetypal mad scientist Rotwang (Rudolf Klein-Rogge) to create an evil, robotic Maria look-alike duplicate (explicitly created to replace a specific human), in order to manipulate his workers and preach riot and rebellion.

The Art Deco-styled female robot (also Brigitte Helm) was constructed and brought to life by Rotwang as a metal android (later inspiring Star Wars' C-3PO). It was supposed to resemble the dead wife of the city&rsquos ruler. Rotwang had kidnapped the virtuous and compassionate union leader heroine Maria, and created an evil doppelganger of her in his laboratory - in a stunning transformation scene in which he copied Maria's face and body onto the metal surface of the robot.

She was to deceptively become an evil, seductive and sadistic version of Maria. The robot had a fully-armored head, with slits for eyes and mouth, sculpted shoulders, as well as a mechanically-jointed body with armor-like coverings on the legs and feet.

The android was created in order to discredit the real Maria by - among other things, performing lascivious, erotic dances to a frenzied male audience to incite them to riot (as part of the aristocracy's plan to brutally subdue them).

Der Herr Der Welt (1934, Germ.) (aka Master of the World)

Giant Industrial Robot, and Army of Killer Robots

Prolific director Harry Piel's fourth science-fiction film (of a quartet of science fiction films) was a tale about robots created to take the place of human labor, but also posing a potential threat of taking over the world.

Robot inventor, machine manufacturer and scientist Dr. Erich Heller (Walter Janssen) and handsome mining engineer Werner Baumann (Siegfried Schürenberg) discussed a futuristic world where robotic machines would liberate mankind from hard labor or dangerous occupations (such as mining). In his work, Heller was assisted by Professor Wolf (Walter Franck), a demented and crazed colleague who had completed work on a giant robot (equipped with death rays) in Heller's long absence. While confronting Wolf with overstepping his authority, Heller ordered the entire project to be dismantled, and was 'accidentally' killed by the robot under Wolf's control.

Soon after, Wolf's evil plan was to displace mine workers with a vast army of killer robots, thus leaving the laborers unemployed. In fact, the robots were attacking the mine workers who tried to get their jobs back. Baumann had warned Wolf that the workers would revolt if they lost their jobs, although Wolf's evil plan was to crush any revolts with his 'war machines' and achieve world domination ("master of the world").

In a climactic scene in the laboratory, there was a stand-off between Baumann, now in love with Vilma (Sybille Schmitz) - the widow of Dr. Heller and rightful owner of her dead husband's company, and Wolf, who ordered his giant robot to attack Baumann. Wolf was assaulted and killed by his own machine when he was caught in the cross-fire of death rays (looking like static electricity bolts). The lab and the robot were destroyed in an explosion.

Flash Gordon (1936) (aka Space Soldiers)

Ming's Army/Guards (possibly non-robotic!)

In this popular 13-part serial, blonde polo player Flash Gordon (Larry 'Buster' Crabbe) and Dale Arden (Jean Rogers) joined up with Dr. Zarkov (Frank Shannon) on his home-made rocketship and went to the planet Mongo. There, they confronted the evil ruling emperor, Ming the Merciless (Charles Middleton), with pretty daughter Princess Aura (Priscilla Lawson).

At the time, the planet Mongo was on a collision course with Earth. Zarkov was able to persuade Ming to stop Mongo's destructive path, although the tyrannical Ming then decided to take over Earth himself - and abduct Dale for himself.

In the first chapter, Flash, Dale, and Zarkov were taken prisoner by Officer Torch and two helmeted, mechanized robotic guards, known as "Annihilants". Ming's deadly army was composed of these mechanical robotic soldiers with scientifically-advanced rifles. When they went outside, the guards appeared to be wearing some kind of undergarment under their armored suits.

[Note: Some regarded the army's soldiers as non-robotic, as per the comic strip which portrayed the guards as human when they took off their helmets.]

Undersea Kingdom (1936)


This early action-packed Republic Pictures serial (with twelve episodes or chapters) was produced in haste to compete with Universal's Flash Gordon (1936) serials. It starred naval action hero Lt. Ray "Crash" Corrigan (Ray Corrigan) and featured the lost city of Atlantis at the bottom of the sea.

Trash can-like robot soldiers with zap rays guns (Atomguns) called Volkites were commanded by warlord Unga Khan (Monte Blue), the evil tyrannical ruler of the Black Robes and remote-controlled by his equally-evil henchman Captain Hakur (Lon Chaney, Jr.). The Volkites were used to attack the sacred city of Atlantis.

The Phantom Creeps (1939)

"Iron Man"

Universal's 12-part serial titled The Phantom Creeps, was advertised as having: 12 Spine-Shivering Action Chapters. This was the last serial for Bela Lugosi who starred as mad scientist Dr. Alex Zorka intent on taking over the world.

He invented a fearsome, slow-moving 8-foot golem-like iron monster or robot that he referred to as "his iron man" (played by 7'4" tall stuntman Ed Wolff), featuring a sculpted round human-like head.

The super-strong robot was remote-controlled, designed to "crush all opposition and make me the most powerful man in the world" - according to Dr. Zorka.

The Tin Man (aka The Tin Woodman)

In this beloved musical fantasy film, the Tin Man (Jack Haley) (aka The Tin Woodman in L. Frank Baum's original book) was one of the fanciful characters in the Wonderful Land of Oz. In fact in the novel, however, the Tin Woodman was originally born human as Nick Chopper, but because of many accidents with his own axe, he was forced to replace all of his body parts and limbs with tin - becoming a cyborg!

He was a silver-faced, funnel-capped robot who joined Dorothy (Judy Garland) on her journey to Oz' Wizard in the Emerald City to request a heart to fill his hollow chest ("The tinsmith forgot to give me a heart" and "If I only had a heart. "). He was first found rusted immobile from moisture and needed to be oiled to begin moving again.

Watch the video: Γερανοί Αφοί Σαββίδη. Καβάλα (January 2022).