Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Man in the Moone

I've been reading the 1657 edition of Francis Godwin's book 'The Man in the Moone -- or A Discourse of a Voyage Thither' online at the fantastic Early English Books Online site (' facsimile page images of virtually every work printed in England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and British North America and works in English printed elsewhere from 1473-1700...'). Below, I fit together this little synopsis of some of his marvelous experiences:

On his way to the Moone in the early 1620's, Our Hero Domingo Gonsales of Seville was intercepted by "Devills and wicked spirits" inhabiting the high atmosphere; they were wary of this mortal intruder, however, and circled him cautiously "wandring at me like so many Birds about an Owle..." On arriving at the Moon, after an 11-day voyage, Gonsales found that the 'Devills' had played mischief with his Victuals; "As for my Canary Wine, it was turned to a stinking and filthie kind of liquor like the Urine of some Beaste."

That synopsis isn't for the article I'm currently writing, just for myself. I've been reading this in search of one small nugget of information that will go down well with readers of Scientific American, and I might have just found it!

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