CRAIG CONLEY (Prof. Oddfellow) is recognized by Encarta as “America’s most creative and diligent scholar of letters, words and punctuation.” He has been called a “language fanatic” by Page Six gossip columnist Cindy Adams, a “cult hero” by Publisher’s Weekly, and “a true Renaissance man of the modern era, diving headfirst into comprehensive, open-minded study of realms obscured or merely obscure” by Clint Marsh. An eccentric scholar, Conley’s ideas are often decades ahead of their time. He invented the concept of the “virtual pet” in 1980, fifteen years before the debut of the popular “Tamagotchi” in Japan. His virtual pet, actually a rare flower, still thrives and has reached an incomprehensible size. Conley’s website is OneLetterWords.com.
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A Turkish Delight of musings on languages, deflations of metaphysics, vauntings of arcana, and great visual humor.
Today — July 26, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from When Life is Young by Mary Elizabeth Dodge (1894).



July 24, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from Lavengro by Augustine Birrell (1896).  The caption reads: "There's the wind on the heath, brother; if I could only feel that, I would gladly live for ever."



July 19, 2014 (permalink)

"On account of the air": an illustration from Face to Face with the Mexicans by Fanny Chambers Gooch (1890).



July 13, 2014 (permalink)

Here are some vintage mock moons from American Explorations in the Ice Zones by Joseph Everett Nourse (1884).



July 8, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from Through the Year (1887).  The caption reads: "Small clouds are sailing.  Blue sky prevailing."



June 22, 2014 (permalink)

"Thanks to the Thunder": an illustration from an 1865 issue of Cornhill magazine.



June 17, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from Peaks and Pines: Another Norway Book by James Arthur Lees (1899).  The caption reads: "Vanished like pale phantoms in the whirling clouds."



June 15, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from an 1870 issue of The Quiver magazine.  The caption reads: "In the face of the wind I fought my way."



June 6, 2014 (permalink)

"More wind than is pleasant": an illustration from The Oxford Thackeray.



June 5, 2014 (permalink)

The more climates change, the more things stay the same.  This melting glacier dates back to 1873's The Story of the Rocks by Joel Dorman Steele.



May 22, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from an 1887 issue of Frank Leslie's Pleasant Hours magazine.  The caption reads: "The rain came on so suddenly, and there I was on the tower, amid the wet ivy, with that stupid boy, who couldn't be made to understand a thing."



May 21, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from an 1894 issue of The Quiver magazine.  The caption reads: "Making the best of it."



May 14, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from A Tramp Abroad Etc. by Samuel Langhorne Clemens (1897).  The caption reads: "Turn on more rain."



May 11, 2014 (permalink)

"Afraid of Thunder": an illustration from Our Young Folks (1873).



April 23, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from an 1858 issue of Punch magazine.



April 8, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from an 1890 issue of The Quiver magazine.  The caption reads: "No waterproof or umbrella for me!"



April 2, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from an 1894 issue of The Quiver magazine.  The caption reads: "'Surely you are not going out in this rain?' she cried."



April 1, 2014 (permalink)

"The Lady of the Weather": an illustration from The Marches of Wales by Charles George Harper (1894).



March 22, 2014 (permalink)

An illustration from an 1858 issue of Punch magazine.



March 20, 2014 (permalink)

The mysterious influence of spring, from The Leisure Hour, 1895.





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