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Benjamin Franklin, Swimmer: An Illustrated History (Transactions Vol 110, Part 1 Lunar Calendars of the Pre-Columbian Maya: Transactions, APS (Volume 109, Part 1)
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Benjamin Franklin, Swimmer Lunar Calendars of the Pre-Columbian Maya

The story of Benjamin Franklin’s lifelong delight in swimming and his influence in making swimming popular in the western world has never been told. This book uses Franklin’s love of swimming to examine the founder’s life, times, and strong, inventive personality through a lens that historians have previously overlooked. Franklin’s personality emerges through the lens of swimming. We see him clearly as a leader, an inventor, and a strong, proud man. As he was in many fields, he was self-taught. He interacted with family, friends, and acquaintances through swimming. Swimming also offered him an entrée into British society.

Franklin discusses swimming in his Letters and in his Autobiography. Friends and family also comment on his swimming. Primary sources for this book include Franklin’s writing, that of his contemporaries, and other artistic and archaeological sources. When Franklin’s grandson Benjamin Franklin Bache was in his care in France he swam in the Seine. Bache’s Journal constitutes another important primary source for this book. The escapades of this engaging literate teenager in France with his grandfather never before have been published.

In 1968 the International Swimming Hall of Fame honored Franklin with membership. The citation mentions his various inventions that made swimming more efficient and his own feats as a swimmer, but most of all his success in promoting swimming as an essential part of any education. Benjamin Franklin’s advice about water safety and his conviction that everyone should learn to swim because it promotes health, hygiene, and safety is still relevant. Swimming has always been “useful knowledge.”

Sarah B. Pomeroy is Distinguished Professor of Classics and History, Emerita, at Hunter College and the Graduate School, CUNY. She is also Lady Joan Reid Author in Residence at Benjamin Franklin House, London, and a Member of the American Philosophical Society. Widely recognized as a pioneer in the fields of women’s history and classical studies, she uses not only textual sources but also artistic and archaeological evidence in order to reconstruct the past. Her publications include Goddesses, Whores, Wives, and Slaves: Women in Classical Antiquity (1975, 1995); Women in Hellenistic Egypt from Alexander to Cleopatra (1984, 1990); Spartan Women (2002); The Murder of Regilla. a Case of Domestic Violence in Antiquity (2007); and Pythagorean Women: Their Lives and Their Writings (2013). Her most recent book is Maria Sibylla Merian, Artist, Scientist, Adventurer (2017). Her books have been translated into Italian, Spanish, German, and Chinese. Professor Pomeroy received fellowships from the Ford Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, and she is an Honorary Fellow of St. Hilda’s College, the University of Oxford. Like Ben Franklin, she likes to play the harpsichord and to swim.

Pre-Columbian Maya interest in the waxing and waning of the Moon is well documented. This rare example of interdisciplinary scholarship brings together a deeply penetrating knowledge of positional astronomy and Maya hieroglyphic writing, two highly disparate areas of study, and synthesizes them into a thorough interpretation of the relationship between astronomical concepts in the Maya codices and monumental inscriptions. Prompted by the recent discovery of the Xulum 10K-2 lunar table, this volume is a logical follow-up to work published in 2011 by the Brickers, “Astronomy in the Maya Codices.” It is a comprehensive study of the Maya lunar calendar. Illus.
Biblioteca Angelica ms. 1551: The Origins of Ethnohistorical Illustration of Asia and the Americas Around 1600 in Rome: Transactions, APS (Volume 109, Part 3) The Power of Maps and the Politics of Borders: Papers from the conference held at the American Philosophical Society, October 2019: Transactions, APS (Vol. 110, Part 4)
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Biblioteca Angelica ms. 1551 The Power of Maps and the Politics of Border
This volume consists of three sets of watercolor drawings, each depicting non-Europea peoples or places in Asia and the Americas. The volume belonged to the famous collector and antiquarian Camillo Massino (1620-1677), and was part of a large donation to the library by his descendants in the 19th century. This is the first in-depth investigation of the three series in terms of materials or manufacture, possible relations to one another or other contemporaneous illustrations, and role in advancing understanding of the depicted peoples. Clues within the drawings, their style and content suggest not only new interpretations, but specific links between and among them, and likely origins, placing them squarely into the most intense period in the early modern era of European interest in these cultures. Illus. Some papers include: Unpacking the Meaning of Maps, Power, and Boundaries; The Legacy of Major Sebastian Bauman’s Map of the Siege of Yorktown; Mapping Old and New Empires in the Early U.S.; Cherokee Boundaries Above, Below, and Beyond; Cherokee Territoriality, Anglo-American Surveying, and the Creation of Borders in the Early 19th-Century West; Chickasaw and Cherokee Resistance to American Colonization, 1785-1816; Hydrography, Natural History, and the Sea in the 19th Century; William Darby’s “A Map of the State of Louisiana” and the Extension of American Sovereignty over the “Neutral Ground” in the Louisiana-Texas Borderland, 1806-1819; Initiating the World’s Longest Unfortified Boundary; Mapping Inequality, Resistance, and Solutions in Early National Philadelphia. Illus.
Against Time: Letters from Nazi Germany, 1938-1939 (Transactions 105, Part 1) John Milton’s Roman Sojourns, 1638-1639: Neo-Latin Self-Fashioning: Transactions, APS (Volume 109, Part 4)
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Against Time: Letters from Nazi Germany, 1938-1939 John Milton’s Roman Sojourns

Johannes Höber left Nazi Germany for America in November 1938. His wife Elfriede was unable to leave for another year, after the outbreak of World War II. Fifty years later, their son discovered the letters this brilliant couple exchanged during the tumultuous months they were separated. Against Time: Letters from Nazi Germany, 1938-1939 collects those letters with an introduction, notes and an epilogue that set the letters in the context of their time. Together, the letters portray the intense relationship of a fascinating couple in a critical period in world history.

This study examines the impact of Rome and its vibrant culture upon Milton in the course of two two-month sojourns in the city in 1638-1639. Focusing on his neo-Latin writings pertaining to that period, it presents new evidence of the academic, literary, and musical contexts surrounding Milton’s proactive integration into seicento Rome. Highlighting Milton’s self-fashioning as one who was hospitably embraced by Catholic Rome, this volume traces his networking with distinguished Italian humanists (upon whom he left no slight an impression). Not least, we read of Milton’s attested presence in the hub of Catholicism, the Vatican itself, and his language is fulsome, even excited.



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Other Presidency: Thomas Jefferson

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Other Presidency: Thomas Jefferson
The Other Presidency: Thomas Jefferson and the American Philosophical Society, by Patrick Spero, With research assistance by Abigail Shelton and John Kenney.


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