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September 17, 2007

This is the first of a regular series, in which we alert you to some of the more fascinating things on the internet to start your day. These and lots more useful, interesting, or amusing links can always be found in the right sidebar of the main page. If you have a suggestion about the type of links we should include, please let us know!

  • No fewer than 150 Monty Python videos - and the number of videos posted shall be 150. Nudge, nudge. Wink, wink. Say no more!
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History
A Very Brief History of Chamber Pots

Some of the oldest chamber pots found by archeologists have been discovered in ancient Greece, but portable toilets have come a long way since then. Whether referred to as "the Jordan" (possibly a reference to the river), "Oliver's Skull" (maybe a nod to Oliver Cromwell's perambulating cranium), or "the Looking Glass" (because doctors would examine urine for diagnosis), they were an essential fact of life in houses and on the road for centuries. In this video from the Wellcome Collection, Visitor Experience Assistant Rob Bidder discusses two 19th century chamber pots in the museum while offering a brief survey of the use of chamber pots in Britain (including why they were particularly useful in wartime).

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A Tour of the New York Academy of Medicine's Rare Book Room
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The Rare Book Room at the New York Academy of Medicine documents the evolution of our medical knowledge. Its books and artifacts are as bizarre as they are fascinating. Read more here.

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