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How A French Fashion Helped Beat An 18th-Century Anti-Vaxxer Movement

When the smallpox vaccine was first introduced in the 18th century, not everyone was eager to get inoculated. Many French people were suspicious of the new procedure, which was banned in Paris for five years. But after a celebrated royal inoculation, a new fashion helped advertise vaccination and ease vaccination… » 1/21/15 3:40pm 1/21/15 3:40pm

Does this Marie Antoinette automaton dream of mechanical cake?

David Roentgen was the 18th century's most celebrated cabinetmaker, famous for adding mechanical fittings and secret drawers to his ornate furniture. In 1784, he surprised his patron, France's King Louis XVI with this marvelous automaton of his queen, Marie Antoinette, playing the dulcimer. The mechanical… » 1/19/13 8:00am 1/19/13 8:00am