Most historical monuments in Europe represent things that once were but are now just preserved. One monument in Prague is still fully functional. The Prague Astronomical Clock is one of the most beautiful and pristine landmarks in the entire Czech Republic. It was originally built in 1410 and has withstood many difficult and turbulent times.
This medieval instrument was used to display astronomical information, such as the relative positions of the sun, moon, zodiacal constellations, and major planets. It can be found on the southern wall of Old Town Hall in the Old Town Square. Thankfully, it was perfectly preserved since its creation and will most likely stay there for many more decades.
Sculptor Chauncey Bradley's Statue 'Undine Rising'
'Undine Rising from the Waters' is a marble statue made by Chauncey Bradley Ives in the 1860s. The statue is based on the medieval story of Undine, a mortal but soulless sea spirit. The story became famous mostly through theater and opera during the 19th century, which prompted Chauncey to depict the story's climax in his statue.
The statue portrays Undine rising from the water to take revenge on her unfaithful husband. It uniquely portrayed Undine as a soft and gentle victim rather than an angry, vengeful wife. Ives went on to sculpt many more neoclassical works and passed away towards the end of the 19th century. The statue can still be visited at Yale's Art Gallery.
This 16th-Century Ring Can Turn Into a Beautiful Astronomical Sphere
Rings were a common piece of jewelry dating back more than 5,000 years ago. While they were mostly used as ornaments to symbolize wealth, some used them as a way to conceal things. This unassuming, though beautiful, ring hides something special inside.
This aesthetic 16th-century ring actually folds into a series of smaller rings. These rings create an astronomical sphere, which is a remarkable achievement considering it was made more than five centuries ago. The identity of the ring maker has not yet been discovered, but it's believed that the ring was originally crafted in Asia. Next time you're at a pawn shop, take a closer look at some jewelry items.
Army Rations from World War II
World War II was one of the most brutal events of the 20th century and is considered the most fatal war in history. Soldiers went through extremely rough climates, as they were not accustomed to the European cold.
In order to cope with the intense physical requirements, these soldiers used compact army rations, which included some surprising ingredients. Army K-rations included crackers, tinned meat, a small piece of chocolate, and even contained a box of gum and cigarettes. Each ration contained up to 3,000 calories, which was a reasonable amount for men who spent their days fighting in freezing weather.
This Beautiful Boxwood Miniature, Created More Than 500 Years Ago in the Netherlands
Some artists take a painstaking amount of time to perfect their artwork. This is impressive today, but even more so when speaking of artwork from over five centuries ago. This piece represents the crucifixion of Christ and shows the brutality of the Romans' treatment, as well as the religious leaders of the time.
We can't begin to fathom how long it must have taken to make this piece of art, as every little detail was meticulously honed to perfection. Researchers believe that this kind of art was a symbol of wealth back in the 16th century. Most box carvings were based on depictions of various religious events, which is why they were done with such passion and care.