Skull and Bones

This mysterious secret society was founded in 1832 after a dispute among Yale debating societies Linonia, Brothers in Unity, and the Calliopean Society over that season’s Phi Beta Kappa awards. William Huntington Russell and Alphonso Taft co-founded “the Order of the Scull and Bones”. The Russell Trust Association, incorporated in 1856 and named after the Bones co-founder manages their assets. Their members go by the nickname “Bonesmen”. Many famous and powerful people have been known to be in the society.

Skull and Bones selects new members among students every spring as part of Yale University’s “Tap Day”, and has done so since 1879. Since the society’s inclusion of women in the early 1990s, Skull and Bones selects fifteen men and women of the junior class to join the society. Skull and Bones “taps” those that it views as campus leaders and other notable figures for its membership.

Documents in the Yale archives suggests that 322 is a reference to the year 322 BC and that members measure dates from this year instead of from the common era. In 322 BC, the Lamian War ended with the death of Demosthenes and Athenians were made to dissolve their government and establish a plutocratic system in its stead, whereby only those possessing 2,000 drachmas or more could remain citizens. Documents in the Tomb have purportedly been found dated to “Anno-Demostheni”. Members measure time of day according to a clock 5 minutes out of sync with normal time, the latter is called “barbarian time”. There is a legend that the numbers in the society’s emblem (“322”) represent “founded in ’32, 2nd corps”, referring to a first Corps in an unknown German university.

Conspiracy theories of the secret society are many. Many theorists claim that the society plays a role in a global conspiracy for world control.The Bonesman have also been accused of possessing the stolen skulls of Martin Van Buren, Geronimo, and Pancho Villa.

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The first death by Robot

Robert Williams was 25 and worked as an American engineer for the Ford Motor Company factory in Flat Rock, Michigan.

He was killed by an industrial robot arm on January 25, 1979 when he was struck in the head and killed by the arm of a 1-ton production-line robot as he was gathering parts in a storage facility. The robot was part of a parts-retrieval system that moved material from one part of the factory to another; when the robot began running slowly, Williams reportedly climbed into the storage rack to retrieve parts manually when he was struck in the head and killed instantly.

His family sued the manufacturers of the robot, Litton Industries, for a total of $15 million dollars, the court concluded that there simply were not enough safety measures in place to prevent such an accident from happening.

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Chernobog

Also known as Czernobog, he was a dark demonic deity in Slavic mythology. His name means ‘Black God’.

Only coming out at night he causes calamity and disaster, bringing bad luck and misfortune wherever he turns. His opposite number is Belobog, the White God of Goodness. Few would pray to such a god but one early passage reveals that people would spit curses into a bowl during feasts to keep him at bay.

Little else is known about him. The only historical sources, which are Christian ones, interpret him as a dark, accursed god, but it is questionable how important or malicious he really was. The name is attested only among West Slavic tribes of the 12th century, therfore it is speculated that he was not a very important or very old deity.

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Arrhichion – Olympic victor even in death

He was a champion pankratiast (martial art blending boxing and wrestling) in the ancient Olympic Games. He was the winner of the pankration at the 52nd and 53rd Olympiads. Little did he know that the 54th would be his last. His fatal fight was described by the geographer Pausanias and by Philostratus the Younger.

Pausanias states:

“For when he was contending for the wild olive with the last remaining competitor, whoever he was, the latter got a grip first, and held Arrhachion, hugging him with his legs, and at the same time he squeezed his neck with his hands. Arrhachion dislocated his opponent’s toe, but expired owing to suffocation; but he who suffocated Arrhachion was forced to give in at the same time because of the pain in his toe. The Eleans crowned and proclaimed victor the corpse of Arrhachion.”

The account by Philostratus’ is longer:

“Accordingly the antagonist of Arrichion, having already clinched him around the middle, thought to kill him; already he had wound his forearm about the other’s throat to shut off the breathing, while, pressing his legs on the groins and winding his feet one inside each knee of his adversary, he forestalled Arrichion’s resistance by choking him till the sleep of death thus induced began to creep over his senses. But in relaxing the tension of his legs he failed to forestall the scheme of Arrichion; for the latter kicked back with the sole of his right foot (as the result of which his right side was imperiled since now his knee was hanging unsupported), then with his groin he holds his adversary tight till he can no longer resist, and, throwing his weight down toward the left while he locks the latter’s foot tightly inside his own knee, by this violent outward thrust he wrenches the ankle from its socket.”


Philostratus also wrote that Arrichion’s failure to submit to his opponent was the result of his trainer, Eryxias, shouting to him, “What a noble epitaph, ‘He was never defeated at Olympia.'”

A victor statue of Arrhichion was set up at Phigalia; what is believed to be the same statue is now displayed in the museum at Olympia. It is one of the oldest dated Olympic victor statues.

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Jinn

Tales of the mystical creatures appear in early Arabian and later Islamic mythology. An individual member of the jinn is known as a jinni, djinni, or genie. Throughout the Quran and other Islamic texts they are mentioned frequently. The Quran says that the jinn were created from a smokeless and “scorching fire”, but are also physical in nature, being able to interact in a tactile manner with people and objects and likewise be acted upon.

The earliest evidence of the word, can be found in Persian, for the singular Jinni is the Avestic “Jaini”, a wicked (female) spirit. Jaini were among various creatures believe among pre-Zoroastrian peoples of Persia.

The jinn, humans, and angels make up the three known sapient creations of God. Like human beings, the jinn can be good, evil, or neutrally benevolent and have free will like humans.

Jewish lore mention a creaturr called Shedim, who are akin to the islamic concept of Jinn. They are said to eat, drink, procreate and die, are also mostly invisible and in some accounts, they inhabited the earth before mankind until human beings replaced them, similar to the Jinn in Islam.

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