The Destruction of Tyre, by John Martin, 1840. © Toledo Museum of Art, purchased with funds from the Libbey Endowment, gift of Edward Drummond Libbey.

Fear

Volume X, Number 3 | summer 2017

Miscellany

Greek geographer Strabo wrote around 20 bc that, to deal with “a crowd of women” or “any promiscuous mob,” one cannot use reason but rather must exert control using myths and marvels. “For thunderbolt, aegis, trident, torches, snakes, thyrsus lances—arms of the gods—are myths,” he wrote. “The founders of states gave their sanction to these things as bugbears wherewith to scare the simpleminded.”

Suffering has its limit, but fears are endless.

—Pliny the Younger, c. 108

Lapham’sDaily

A telescopic image of the formalhault solar system. A bright dot is surrounded by a cloud of smaller red dots. An inset shows a close-up of what looks like a planet, labeled Formalhault b.

DÉjÀ Vu

Space Oddities

2020:

Exoplanet revealed to be nothing but a large cloud of dust.

1903:

Supposed irrigation canals on Mars are merely optical illusions.

More

The World in Time

Peter Fritzsche

Lewis H. Lapham speaks with the author of Hitler’s First Hundred Days: When Germans Embraced the Third Reich. More