Jukong Boat of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands

The jukong is a type of sailing boat found in the Australian Territory of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands where it is the preferred mode of transport across the atoll. It is more akin to the European whaleboat than to the similarly named jukung from Indonesia. The latter is also known as a cadik and is a traditional outrigger canoe used for fishing. The double outrigger … Continue reading Jukong Boat of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Ross Dependency, Scott Base, and HMNZS Endeavour

The Ross Dependency is a region of Antarctica defined by a sector originating at the South Pole, passing along longitudes 160° east to 150° west, and terminating at latitude 60° south. It is claimed by New Zealand. Since the Antarctic Treaty came into force in 1961, Article IV of which states: “No acts or activities taking place while the present Treaty is in force shall … Continue reading Ross Dependency, Scott Base, and HMNZS Endeavour

Michelangelo: Painter, Sculptor, Architect

Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni — more commonly known solely by his first name Michelangelo — was born on March 6, 1475, in Caprese, known today as Caprese Michelangelo, a small town situated in Valtiberina, near Arezzo, Tuscany. He would become an Italian sculptor, painter, architect and poet of the High Renaissance born in the Republic of Florence, who exerted an unparalleled influence on the … Continue reading Michelangelo: Painter, Sculptor, Architect

King Kong’s Film Debut

On March 2, 1933, the film King Kong opened at New York’s Radio City Music Hall to rave reviews. Directed and produced by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack, the screenplay by James Ashmore Creelman and Ruth Rose was developed from an idea conceived by Cooper and Edgar Wallace. It stars Fay Wray, Bruce Cabot and Robert Armstrong. It has been ranked by Rotten … Continue reading King Kong’s Film Debut

The Britten-Norman Trislander

On February 23, 532, Byzantine emperor Justinian I ordered the building of a new Orthodox Christian basilica in Constantinople which would become the Hagia Sophia. That is what I had planned to write about today. However, every stamp in my collection that I thought depicted the Hagie Sophia in fact portrayed some other mosque in Istanbul or elsewhere in Turkey, none of which I felt … Continue reading The Britten-Norman Trislander

The Iron Pagoda of Kaifeng

The Iron Pagoda (鐵塔) of Youguo Temple (佑國寺) in Kaifeng (開封), a prefecture-level city in east-central Henan province, China, is a Buddhist Chinese pagoda built in 1049 during the Northern Song dynasty (960–1279) of China. The pagoda is so-named not because it is made of iron, but because its color resembles that of iron. It is a brick pagoda tower built on the location of … Continue reading The Iron Pagoda of Kaifeng