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A Man with Vision

Nicholas of Cusa is an author, cardinal, mathematician, administrator and scientist who will one day be named "the first modern thinker." He is one of the first to be called a "Renaissance man" meaning that his learning is varied and deep. He has yet another skill. He grinds his own lenses. The first eyeglasses were invented in 1286 and were designed for reading things up close. Nicholas has invented a concave lens that will allow people with myopic vision to see things that are far away. Myopia is the condition where one can only see things near by ... thus it is often called "nearsightedness." [1] [2] [3] [4]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Cardinal Nicholas of Cusa was such a versatile man. I did a quick search and came up with his quote about the Universe and Other Worlds: "Rather than think that so many stars and parts of the heavens are uninhabited and that this earth of ours alone is peopled - and that with beings perhaps of an inferior type - we will suppose that in every region there are inhabitants, differing in nature by rank and all owing their origin to God, who is the center and circumference of all stellar regions." He believed that the Earth was not the center of the Universe, and that the Earth was like any other heavenly body. If only Copernicus had known of such views, he might have published his work sooner and thus dragged science into the modern era.... but Copernicus won't be born until 1473. By the time he grows up it will be a different world. [5] [6]

The Afghan Empire

The Afghan emir, Bahlul Khan Lodi, has risen to take the throne of the Delhi Sultanate after the previous ruler abdicated. The Sultanate is part of what is now northern India and eastern Pakistan. If you will recall, Tamerlane forced the Delhi Sultanate to murder over a million Hindus simply because they refused to convert to Islam. Since that time the Delhi Sultante has been severely reduced but under the Lodi Dynasty the Sultanate will expand to become the Afghan Empire until it is overcome by the Persian Mongols in 1526 and be incorporated into the Mughal Empire. [7] [8] [9]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Nowadays the Lodi name is associated with the Lodi Gardens which are a series of tombs dedicated to the Lodi rulers. The tombs are quite beautiful but if you look closely you can see where some have been defaced with graffiti. Check out this YouTube video for a tour of the gardens.[10] [11]

Christopher Columbus is Born... Jewish?

Christopher Columbus will discover America in 1492 but he won't be the first to step foot on the North American continent. That honor will go to Leif Erikson in 999 and later John Cabot in 1497. Instead, Columbus will be inspired by the Travels of Marco Polo and guided by a totally scientific but utterly inaccurate map of the world from the Canary Islands to the Bahamas, Cuba and Hispaniola. Columbus will finally step foot on the South American continent in 1498. [12] [13][14]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
The exact date and place of birth of Christopher Columbus are still up in the air. There is even evidence that he may have been Jewish. Doubt of his nationality comes from references he makes to himself in the medieval Spanish of the time and his own will seems to favor Jews and Jewish causes. Also... he doesn't speak Italian. While the name "Christopher" is clearly a Christian name, many Jews who were forced to convert would change their names to something obviously Christian. Nothing is proven but given that the Jews were expelled from Spain in 1492, there was a strong motivation for Columbus to keep his Jewish origins secret. [15] [16] [17] [18]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1451, Wikipedia.

See Also


  1. Nicholas of Cusa - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  2. Renaissance man - The Free Dictionary. 2014 [last update] Definition: "n. A man who has broad intellectual interests and is accomplished in areas of both the arts and the sciences."
  3. Nearsightedness (Myopia)- WebMD. 2014 [last update] (OVERVIEW)
  4. Hagen, John. Nicholas of Cusa. The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 11. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 21 Oct. 2014.
  5. Nicolaus Copernicus - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  6. Nicholas of Cusa - Wikiquote, en.wikiquote.org, 2014 [last update]
  7. Lodi dynasty - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  8. Delhi Sultanate - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  9. Mughal Empire - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  10. Lodhi Gardens and Safdarjung's Tomb - YouTube. American-Indian Production. 2014 [last update] Summary: A tour of Lodi Gardens that is well produced and very homey.
  11. John Fogerty - Lodi - YouTube. Credence Clearwater Revival. 2014 [last update]
  12. Christopher Columbus - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  13. John Cabot: Second Voyage - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  14. Leif Erikson: Discovering Vinland - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  15. Origin theories of Christopher Columbus - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  16. Christopher Columbus' Jewish Roots Examined By Historians, HuffingtonPost.com. 2012-May-22 (WEB NEWS) Quote: "Some scholars, after analyzing Columbus' will and other documents, have devised a new theory about the explorer. They believe he was a Marrano, or a Jew who pretended to be a Catholic to avoid religious persecution."
  17. Marrano - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  18. Gilad, Elon. Columbus May Not Have Been First Jew in America - Forward.com. (Originally from Haaretz News). 2014-Oct-13. (WEB NEWS) Quote: "Much has been written about the supposed “concealed” Jewish identity of Christopher Columbus, leader of the voyage. But while the theory is plausible, it cannot be proved, and is based on rather strained circumstantial evidence. Yet one person on the voyage had unarguably been a Jew, though he converted shortly before setting out to the deep blue sea. Luis de Torres was apparently born Yosef ben HaLevi HaIvri. He was the voyage's interpreter. Columbus hired de Torres, who spoke Portuguese, Hebrew, Arabic, and Aramaic, believing that he could converse with the Jews they would find in the court of the Chinese emperor and with the merchants in the markets of the Orient."

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