Could you have joined the Pythagorean Secret Society, would you have made the cut to learn from the immortal number-shaman himself? πŸ‘‡
Physiognomy:

Pythagoras practically invented the discipline of physiognomy and was extremely strict about the physical standards of his applicants. Don't fail at the first hurdle!
Probationary period - three years of contempt and abuse, followed by five years of total silence.
During this time the initiates were not allowed to see Pythagoras when he spoke, but they could hear him behind a curtain.
After this trial period the candidate then handed over their material possessions to the society.
Successful candidates could then listen to Pythagoras and see him lecture. They were initiated into the formal esoterica of the society.
In particular the mystical properties of numbers.
But also the taboo nature of beans - DO NOT eat beans!
The initiate now pledges to never have friends outside of the society:

β€œworship friends as you do gods, but subjugate others as you do animals"
Your new way of life is one of asceticism, vegetarianism and strict regulation of behaviour. You are expressly forbidden to divulge any information about the society to outsiders.
Don't eat meat or beans
Don't talk to anyone
Worship numbers
Simple as
Anyone who failed during the probation period is spiritually dead. Their possessions are to be given back twice over, a gravestone erected and the person treated as someone else forever.

β€’ β€’ β€’

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More from @Paracelsus1092

15 Sep
New genetics paper looking at how landscape has provided refuges within the Caucasus, preserving ancestral lineages and showing how geographic barriers are crucial to migration and community continuity.

A thread πŸ‘‡

nature.com/articles/s4159…
One major reason the Caucasus are so important to geneticists is the provision of about half of the genetic make-up of the Yamnaya steppe herders, therefore of great importance to any understanding of Indo European history.
Broadly speaking the genetics of today's Caucasian people show deep continuity with the late Upper Palaeolithic and the widest levels of diversity exists across the Y chromosome distribution.
Read 14 tweets
13 Sep
** THREAD OF THREADS **

THE HISTORY OF 'THE ANARCHY' 1135-53 AD

This is my series covering a lesser known chapter in English history, the civil war between King Stephen and Empress Matilda. I'll continue to add threads until it's complete. πŸ‘‡
Read 5 tweets
12 Sep
** THREAD **

THE ANARCHY - PART 4 - WAR IS COME

With war now declared between Matilda and Stephen, the first phase of the conflict unfolded. Matilda needed to gain a foothold in England and link up with other rebels, Stephen needed to maintain control.
In 1139 Matilda's forces launched two invasion fleets, the second of which landed Robert at Arundel. He took his forces north to Bristol while Matilda was safe in Arundel Castle. Robert was aiming to meet up with Miles of Gloucester who had sworn to the Empress' cause.
The aim was to secure multiple strongholds and demonstrate to other lords and knights that Matilda was a serious force worth joining.
Read 12 tweets
4 Sep
**THREAD**

THE ANARCHY - PART 3 - HAIL THE KING

With Henry I dead in Normandy and his realm in chaos, the opportunistic Stephen of Blois takes his chance to claim the throne and sets sail for England with his close companions.
Stephen headed to Winchester, the seat of the Treasury, where his brother, Henry Bishop of Winchester, opened the city and gave him the keys. In December he was crowned king by the Archbishop of Canterbury. It all seemed to easy, the nobles in Normandy quietened down.
Over the next two years he performed well, but the Welsh and Normandy borders proved a serious thorn in his side. Geoffrey and Matilda took castles in Normandy and threatened his realm and his failure to deal with Wales left open the question of his viability to rule.
Read 9 tweets
29 Aug
**THREAD**

THE ANARCHY - PART 2 - THE EMPRESS

With the heir to the throne dead, Henry now looked to either his nephew Stephen or his newly widowed daughter Matilda to inherit the crown. Neither were ideal options and what Henry did next would determine the fate of England... Image
His brother Robert, although pacified in Normandy, was a natural magnet for those opposed to Henry's rule. Sensing weakness, his enemies looked to Robert's son, William Clito, to provide the rallying cry for a change. Henry sought to counter this by strategically marrying Matilda
His chose to ally with the county of Anjou, a natural bulwark to France and Normandy. Count Faulk's son Geoffrey Plantagenet seemed the perfect choice. The boy was a precocious warrior, strong, energetic and ambitious. They were married on Whitsun 1128 in Le Mans. Image
Read 9 tweets
28 Aug
Sometimes the term 'Renaissance Man' is an overused cliche, other times it feels absolutely appropriate.

This is Leonard Therneysser (1531-95), a man who contributed to pharmacy, chemistry, metallurgy, botany, mathematics, astronomy and medicine

His story:
>trained as a goldsmith
>studied botany and alchemy
>became a metallurgist and opened a mine
> commissioned by the Habsburgs to journey in Africa, collecting minerals, plants and medicines
>became a doctor
>hired as personal physician to various Electors
>constructed a glass studio
>set up a home laboratory, printing press company and library
> made money selling horoscopes, calendars and talismans
>published German, Latin, Hebrew, Greek and Arabic texts
>designed the first scientific curiosity cabinet in Brandenburg
Read 4 tweets

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