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Tangled Tale, A

By: Lewis Carroll

Lewis Carroll (1832 - 1896) is best known for 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland'. It is less widely known that he worked as a lecturer for mathematics at Christ Church college, Oxford for 27 years. 'A tangled tale' merges his two talents as storyteller and mathematician. It consists of 10 short humorous stories which present one or more mathematical problems. The 10 'knots' as they are called, were first published in 'The Monthly Packet' magazine between April 1880 and March 1885, where readers were invited to solve the problems, and the solution was discussed in a later issue. (Summary by Availle)...

Fiction, Instruction

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Easy Lessons in Einstein

By: Edwin E. Slosson

Published in 1920, Slosson’s Easy Lessons in Einstein is one of the first popularizations of Einstein’s theory of relativity. This book is meant to convey to the general reader the ideas of relativity in non-mathematical terms, by the use of thought experiements and pop-cultural references of the day. This edition also includes a short article by Einstein on Time, Space and Gravitation. (Summary by JoeD)...

Instruction, Nature, Science

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Golden mean to 5000 digits

By: Jerry Bonnell ; Robert Nemiroff

The golden section is a line segment sectioned into two according to the golden ratio. The total length a+b is to the longer segment a as a is to the shorter segment b. In mathematics and the arts, two quantities are in the golden ratio if the ratio between the sum of those quantities and the larger one is the same as the ratio between the larger one and the smaller. The golden ratio is a mathematical constant, approximately 1.6180339887.... At least since the Renaissance, many artists and architects have proportioned their works to approximate the golden ratio—especially in the form of the golden rectangle, in which the ratio of the longer side to the shorter is the golden ratio—believing this proportion to be aesthetically pleasing. Mathematicians have studied the golden ratio because of its unique and interesting properties. (From Wikipedia)...

Science

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Prime Numbers

By: Unknown

A recording of the first 2000 prime numbers (2-17389). Recommended listening for all math geeks and insomniacs!

Science

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Mathematical Problems

By: David Hilbert

Lecture delivered before the International Congress of Mathematicians at Paris in 1900 and subsequently published in the Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society Vol. 8 (1902), 479-481....

Essay/Short nonfiction, Science

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Botchan

By: Sōseki Natsume

Botchan is the story of a young math teacher from Tokyo whose first assignment takes him to a middle school in the country side. His arrival there is not very lucky: The pupils are bound to test his perseverance and cheerily comments every one of his perceived missteps. In the teacher's room, he soon finds himself in the middle of an intrigue between the jovial Porcupine and the fat Hubbard Squash on one side, and the effeminate Red Shirt and his follower Clown on the other. Will Botchan choose the right side in the end? Botchan - with morality as the main theme - is one of the most popular novels in Japan. Sōseki Natsume bases the story on his own experiences as teacher in Matsuyama, his first assignment away from Tokyo. (Summary by Availle)...

Literature, Fiction

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Short Nonfiction Collection Vol. 026

By: Various

A collection of short nonfiction works in the public domain. The selections included in this collection were independently chosen by the readers, and the topics encompass history, travel, embroidery, science, mathematics, humor, philosophy, poliltics, and nature. (summary by J. M. Smallheer)...

Essay/Short nonfiction

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Miss Ashton's New Pupil

By: Sarah Stuart Robbins

Marion Park, the daughter of missionaries, is sent to Miss Ashton's boarding school. There she meets with many young girls and together they learn not just lessons in German, Logic, Arithmetic, Latin and Rhetoric, but also life lessons of study habits, lady like manners, self control, thoughtfulness of others, truthfulness, and many other character traits. Join these girls of Montrose Academy as they plunge into the adventures of a secret society, fall into a scrape with the boys of Atherton Academy, and plan many Holiday festivities. (Summary by Abigail Rasmussen)...

Fiction, Children, Teen/Young adult

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Book of Lieh-Tzu , The

By: Lieh-Tzu ; Liezi

Although Lieh Tzu's work has evidently passed through the hands of many editors and gathered numerous accretions, there remains a considerable nucleus which in all probability was committed to writing by Lieh Tzu's immediate disciples, and is therefore older than the genuine parts of Chuang Tzu. There are some obvious analogies between the two authors, and indeed a certain amount of matter common to both; but on the whole Lieh Tzu's book bears an unmistakable impress of its own. The geniality of its tone contrasts with the somewhat hard brilliancy of Chuang Tzu, and a certain kindly sympathy with the aged, the poor and the humble of this life, not excluding the brute creation, makes itself felt throughout. - From Lionel Giles Introduction...

History, Literature

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Monadology, The

By: Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz

The Monadology ( La Monadologie , 1714) is one of Gottfried Leibniz’s best known works representing his later philosophy. It is a short text which sketches in some 90 paragraphs a metaphysics of simple substances, or monads. What he proposed can be seen as a modification of occasionalism developed by latter-day Cartesians. Leibniz surmised that there are indefinitely many substances individually 'programmed' to act in a predetermined way, each program being coordinated with all the others. This is the pre-established harmony which solved the mind body problem at the cost of declaring any interaction between substances a mere appearance, something which Leibniz accepted. Indeed it was space itself which became an appearance as in his system there was no need for distinguishing inside from outside. True substances were explained as metaphysical points which, Leibniz asserted, are both real and exact — mathematical points being exact but not real and physical ones being real but not exact. (Summary from Wikipedia)...

Philosophy, Science

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Bab Ballads, The

By: W. S. Gilbert

The Bab Ballads are a collection of light verse by W. S. Gilbert, illustrated with his own comic drawings. Gilbert wrote the Ballads before he became famous for his comic opera librettos with Arthur Sullivan. In writing the Bab Ballads, Gilbert developed his unique topsy-turvy style, where the humour was derived by setting up a ridiculous premise and working out its logical consequences, however absurd. The Ballads also reveal Gilbert's cynical and satirical approach to humour. They became famous on their own, as well as being a source for plot elements, characters and songs that Gilbert would recycle in the Gilbert and Sullivan operas. The Bab Ballads take their name from Gilbert's childhood nickname, and he later began to sign his illustrations Bab. (summary from wikipedia)

Poetry, Humor

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Treatise Of Human Nature, Volume 1, A

By: David Hume

This book, published in two volumes called books by the author, is a treatment of everything from the origin of our ideas to how they are to be divided. It includes important statements of Scepticism and Hume's experimental method. Part 1 deals with the nature of ideas. Part 2 deals with the ideas of space and time. Part 3 deals with knowledge and probability. Part 4 deals with skeptical and other systems of philosophy, including a discussion of the soul and personal identity. This is a recording of Volume I (or Book 1). Volume II (which contains Books 2 and 3) is in production at the moment....

Philosophy

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Nine Unlikely Tales

By: E. (Edith) Nesbit

Nine original and, yes, unlikely fairy-tales, which include stories of the arithmetic fairy, the king who became a charming villa-residence and the dreadful automatic nagging machine. All are classic-Nesbit: charming, novel and not afraid to squeeze in a moral or two -- told with proper fairy-tale style. Summary by Cori...

Children, Fairy tales, Short stories

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Anatomy of the Human Body, Part 2 (Gray's Anatomy)

By: Henry Gray

Henry Gray's classic anatomy textbook was first published in 1858 and has been in continuous publication ever since, revised and expanded through many successive editions. This recording is of the public-domain 1918 US edition (some information may be outdated). For the recording, we have divided the book into five parts. Part 2 includes Syndesmology and Myology. The mathematical formulas (section 25) and the illustrations can be found in the online text at bartleby.com. (Summary by Laurie Anne Walden)...

Science, Instruction, Nature

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Sidelights on Relativity

By: Albert Einstein

Sidelights on Relativity contains ETHER AND THE THEORY OF RELATIVITY, an address delivered on May 5th, 1920, in the University of Leyden; and GEOMETRY AND EXPERIENCE, an expanded form of an address to the Prussian Academy of Sciences in Berlin on January 27th, 1921. (Intro from Project Gutenberg)...

Nature, Science

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Meditations on First Philosophy

By: René Descartes

After several years working on a treatise putting forth his mechanistic philosophy and physics, Descartes shelved the project when his contemporary, Galileo, was charged with heresy. That work, The World, was only published after Descartes’ death. It seems that Descartes must have had this, in part at least, in mind when writing his more famous philosophical works. This is especially clear in the Meditations , not only in the obsequiousness of the Letter of Dedication, but also in the specific mode of argument, which does not seek merely to found science upon grounds acceptable to religious authority, but to specifically found a mathematical science; one which clearly privileges mathematical demonstrations even over common sense judgments based upon everyday and constant experience. His Copernicanism, put forth posthumously in The World, would require just such a defense. The Meditations are a central work of early modern philosophy, and play a crucial role in the conceptual development of basic perspectives and problems in the Western tradition, including substance dualism, external world skepticism, and the modern notion of the su...

Philosophy

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Philosophy and Fun of Algebra

By: Mary Everest Boole

Mary Everest Boole (1832-1916) was born Mary Everest in England and spent her early years in France. She married mathematician George Boole. She was the author of several works on teaching and teaching mathematics in particular. This short book, Philosophy and Fun of Algebra, is meant to be read by children and introduces algebra and logic. She uses the word “algebra” broadly, defining it as a “method of solving problems by honest confession of one’s ignorance”. Using this definition, Boole introduces, in a conversational manner, the concepts of logic and algebra, illustrating these concepts with stories and anecdotes, often from biblical sources. At times, her discussion seems somewhat mystical, speaking of the imagination and angels as messengers which guide one toward the next step in a logical investigation. Boole ends the book with a reminder that algebra’s essential element is “the habitual registration of the exact limits of one’s knowledge” and a call for the public to keep this principle in mind when encountering any situation. (Summary written by Patricia Oakley)...

Children, Philosophy, Science

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Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions

By: Edwin Abbott Abbott

Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions is an 1884 science fiction novella by the English schoolmaster Edwin Abbott Abbott. As a satire, Flatland offered pointed observations on the social hierarchy of Victorian culture. However, the novella's more enduring contribution is its examination of dimensions; in a foreword to one of the many publications of the novella, noted science writer Isaac Asimov described Flatland as The best introduction one can find into the manner of perceiving dimensions. As such, the novella is still popular amongst mathematics, physics and computer science students....

Fiction, Science fiction, Satire

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Science and Hypothesis

By: Henri Poincaré

Jules Henri Poincaré (1854 – 1912) was one of France's greatest mathematicians and theoretical physicists, and a philosopher of science. As a mathematician and physicist, he made many original fundamental contributions to pure and applied mathematics, mathematical physics and celestial mechanics. He was responsible for formulating the Poincaré conjecture, one of the most famous problems in mathematics. In his research on the three-body problem, Poincaré became the first person to discover a chaotic deterministic system which laid the foundations of modern chaos theory. He is considered to be one of the founders of the field of topology. Poincaré introduced the modern principle of relativity and was the first to present the Lorentz transformations in their modern symmetrical form. He discovered the remaining relativistic velocity transformations and recorded them in a letter to Lorentz in 1905. Thus he obtained perfect invariance of all of Maxwell's equations, an important step in the formulation of the theory of special relativity. (Summary from Wikipedia)...

Science

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Relativity: The Special and General Theory

By: Albert Einstein

This is an introduction to Einstein’s space-bending, time-stretching theory of Relativity, written by the master himself. Special and General relativity explain the structure of space time and provide a theory of gravitation, respectively. Einstein’s theories shocked the world with their counterintuitive results, including the dissolution of absolute time. In this book he brings a simplified form of his profound understanding of the subject to the layperson. In the words of Einstein: “The present book is intended, as far as possible, to give an exact insight into the theory of Relativity to those readers who, from a general scientific and philosophical point of view, are interested in the theory, but who are not conversant with the mathematical apparatus of theoretical physics.” The book is challenging at times but, when approached patiently, proves itself one of the most lucid explanations of Relativity to be found anywhere. [Due to transcription or optical character recognition errors in creating online texts, and because of less-than-clear fonts in some printed texts, the variables as read in some of the equations here are not as...

Science

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Grell Mystery, The

By: Frank Froest

Mr Robert Grell, millionaire and socialite, is found murdered in his study on a stormy evening. It's up to Heldon Foyle, the detective, to unravel the mystery. (Summary by Christine Blachford - to be expanded)...

Mystery

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Bible (WNT) NT 06: Romans

By: Waymouth New Testamant

The Epistle of Paul to the Romans, usually referred to simply as Romans, is the sixth book in the New Testament. Biblical scholars agree that it was written by the Apostle Paul to explain that Salvation is offered through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is by far the longest of the Pauline epistles, and is considered his most important theological legacy....

Ancient Texts, Religion

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Bible (ASV) NT 17: Titus

By: American Standard Version

The Epistle to Titus is a book of the canonic New Testament, one of the three so-called pastoral epistles (with 1 Timothy and 2 Timothy). It is a letter from Paul to the Apostle Titus. (Summary from Wikipedia)...

Religion

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Molly Make-Believe

By: Eleanor Hallowell Abbott

Carl Stanton is an invalid suffering from an unusual bout of rheumatism. His fiancee is gone for the winter and though he begs her to write to help ease his boredom and pain she is stingy with her letters. She sends him what she calls a 'ridiculous circular' which she states is very apropos of his sentimental passion for letters. In a sudden fit of mischief, malice and rheumatism, Carl decides to respond to the circular which results in bringing about the necessary distraction in a flurry of letters that do ease Carl's boredom and pain but also bring him something else that he never quite expected. (summary by Kehinde)...

Teen/Young adult

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Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners

By: John Bunyan

Grace Abounding is the spiritual autobiography of John Bunyan, who also penned Pilgrim’s Progress, perhaps one of the most significant pieces of Christian literature, second only to the Bible. Grace Abounding follows Bunyan’s struggle to find true repentance and forgiveness, his battle with Satan’s temptations of unbelief, his comfort found in the Bible and his overarching victory gotten by the grace of God through Jesus Christ his Son. Readers familiar with Pilgrim’s Progress will recognize that many of the allegorical points in his famous work came out of Bunyan’s own struggles and discoveries, and it has been said that Bunyan could not have written Pilgrim’s Progress without first going through the battles chronicled in Grace Abounding. (Summary by Stephen Escalera)...

Biography, Religion

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Annals Vol 2, The

By: Publius Cornelius Tacitus

The Annals was Tacitus' final work, covering the period from the death of Augustus Caesar in the year 14. He wrote at least 16 books, but books 7-10 and parts of books 5, 6, 11 and 16 are missing. Book 6 ends with the death of Tiberius and books 7-12 presumably covered the reigns of Caligula and Claudius. The remaining books cover the reign of Nero, perhaps until his death in June 68 or until the end of that year, to connect with the Histories. The second half of book 16 is missing, ending with the events of the year 66. We do not know whether Tacitus completed the work or whether he finished the other works that he had planned to write; he died before he could complete his planned histories of Nerva and Trajan, and no record survives of the work on Augustus Caesar and the beginnings of the Empire with which he had planned to complete his work as an historian. (Summary from Wikipedia.)...

History

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Folk Ballad Collection 001

By: Various

’s first collection of sung and spoken folk ballads (13 in collection).

Music, Poetry

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Untrodden Peaks and Unfrequented Valleys

By: Amelia B. Edwards

Amelia B. Edwards wrote this historical travelogue in in 1873. The book describes her travels through a relatively un-visited area in the South Tyrol district of Italy. The Dolomites are a part of that most famous of mountain chains, the Alps. In this book, the Writer and her friend and companion, L., travel from Southern Italy, having over-wintered there, to visit the Dolomite district. Her chatty style, dry sense of humor, accuracy of facts, and sympathy for humanity set her works apart. The slice of Victorian British life presented is quite captivating. She would later travel throughout Europe and Egypt at a time when most women didn't leave home. Later she was to become one of the pioneering Egyptologists of the age. This is her first travelogue....

Memoirs

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Cleopatra

By: Jacob Abbott

A biography of the famous Cleopatra of Egypt, written in a manner, equally interesting to children and to adults.

History, Biography, Children

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Bible (CUV) NT 02: 聖經 (和合本) 新約全書 - 馬可福音 (Mark)

By: Chinese Union Version

The Chinese Union Version (CUV) (Chinese: 和合本; pinyin: héhé běn; literally harmonized/united version) is the predominant Chinese language translation of the Bible used by Chinese Protestants. It is considered by many to be the Chinese Protestant’s Bible. The CUV in use today is the vernacular Mandarin version, published in two slightly different editions - the Shen Edition (神版) and the Shangti Edition (上帝版) - differing in the way the word “God” is translated. 聖經 (和合本)(簡稱和合本;或稱國語和合本、官話和合本),是今日華語人士最普遍使用的聖經譯本。此譯本的出版起源自1890年在上海舉行的傳教士大會,會中各差會派代表成立了三個委員會,各自負責翻譯《官話和合本》、《淺文理和合譯本》及《文理和合譯本》。...

Religion

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South Pole, The

By: Roald Amundsen

In contrast to Scott's South Pole expedition, Amundsen's expedition benefited from good equipment, appropriate clothing, and a fundamentally different primary task (Amundsen did no surveying on his route south and is known to have taken only two photographs) Amundsen had a better understanding of dogs and their handling, and he used of skis more effectively. He pioneered an entirely new route to the Pole and they returned. In Amundsen's own words: Victory awaits him who has everything in order -- luck, people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck. Short accounts by other members of the party are appended. (Summary adapted from Wikipedia by Karen Merline.)...

Travel, Science, History

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Reinaart de Vos

By: Anonymous

Het episch dierdicht Van den Vos Reynaerde, geschreven in het Middelnederlands in de 13e eeuw, geldt als een hoogtepunt in de Nederlandse middeleeuwse literatuur. Het epos verhaalt van de schurkenstreken van Reinaert de Vos, die zo listig is dat hij iedereen weet beet te nemen. Deze vertaling uit 1885 is van Julius de Geyter. Uit zijn inleiding: Reinaart de Vos, dat meesterstuk onzer Letterkunde, bestaat uit twee deelen: het eene, dat men gewoonlijk het eerste boek noemt, is omtrent den jare 1250 in Vlaanderen geschreven door een man van genie; het zoogenaamde tweede boek , ongeveer 150 jaren later waarschijnlijk ook door een Vlaming opgesteld, is nauwelijks het werk van een man van talent. De eerste onzer beide dichters, zooals d'eposschrijvers immer deden, had al d'avonturen van zijnen held bijeengezameld, er met een meesterhand de grondstof uitgegrepen, en ze tot een kunstjuweel verwerkt. Naar zijn eigen oordeel, was zijn gedicht gansch de geschiedenis van Reinaart, wat er dan ook over dezen nog meer was geschreven of in den mond des volks voortleefde. Onze tweede schrijver, anderhalv' eeuw nadien, heeft nu juist dat overtollig g...

Poetry, Myths/Legends, Animals, Fiction, Literature, Satire

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Four-Pools Mystery, The

By: Jean Webster

In The Four Pools Mystery the tyrannical plantation owner is deemed responsible for his own murder because of his mistreatment of the former slaves who continued in his employment after the war. Jean Webster (pseudonym for Alice Jane Chandler Webster) was born July 24, 1876 and died June 11, 1916. She was an American writer and author of many books including Daddy-Long-Legs and Dear Enemy. (Wiki)...

Fiction, Mystery

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Natural History Volume 2, The

By: Pliny the Elder ; John Bostock

Naturalis Historia (Latin for Natural History) is an encyclopedia published circa AD 77-79 by Pliny the Elder. It is one of the largest single works to have survived from the Roman empire to the modern day and purports to cover the entire field of ancient knowledge, based on the best authorities available to Pliny. The work became a model for all later encyclopedias in terms of the breadth of subject matter examined, the need to reference original authors, and a comprehensive index list of the contents. The scheme of his great work is vast and comprehensive, being nothing short of an encyclopedia of learning and of art so far as they are connected with nature or draw their materials from nature. The work divides neatly into the organic world of plants and animals, and the realm of inorganic matter, although there are frequent digressions in each section. He is especially interested in not just describing the occurrence of plants, animals and insects, but also their exploitation (or abuse) by man, especially Romans. The description of metals and minerals is particularly detailed, and valuable for the history of science as being the m...

Ancient Texts, Classics (antiquity), Instruction, Nature

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