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These featured pictures, as scheduled below, appeared as the picture of the day (POTD) on the English Wikipedia's Main Page in the last 30 days.

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January 16

Chosen at random from a selection of seven; all alternatives shown below

Danzig gulden

The Danzig gulden was the currency of the Free City of Danzig (present-day Gdańsk, Poland) between 1923 and 1939. Inflation in Danzig during 1922 had spiralled out of control, and the city abandoned the German Papiermark in favour of the Danzig gulden the following year. The issuance of the new gulden was overseen by the Bank of Danzig, established in early 1924. The obverse of each note shows the city's coat of arms on the left and an important local architectural structure in the centre. This ten-gulden banknote, issued in 1930, bears an illustration of the Artus Court, previously a meeting place of merchants and a centre of social life, and now part of the Gdańsk History Museum.

Other denominations:

Banknote design credit: Bank of Danzig; photographed by Andrew Shiva

Danzig gulden

The Danzig gulden was the currency of the Free City of Danzig (present-day Gdańsk, Poland) between 1923 and 1939. Inflation in Danzig during 1922 had spiralled out of control, and the city abandoned the German Papiermark in favour of the Danzig gulden the following year. The issuance of the new gulden was overseen by the Bank of Danzig, established in early 1924. The obverse of each note shows the city's coat of arms on the left and an important local architectural structure in the centre. This twenty-gulden banknote, issued in 1932, bears an illustration of the Prison Tower located near Gdańsk's historic Golden Gate on the obverse.

Other denominations:

Banknote design credit: Bank of Danzig; photographed by Andrew Shiva

Danzig gulden

The Danzig gulden was the currency of the Free City of Danzig (present-day Gdańsk, Poland) between 1923 and 1939. Inflation in Danzig during 1922 had spiralled out of control, and the city abandoned the German Papiermark in favour of the Danzig gulden the following year. The issuance of the new gulden was overseen by the Bank of Danzig, established in early 1924. The obverse of each note shows the city's coat of arms on the left and an important local architectural structure in the centre. This twenty-five-gulden banknote, issued in 1931, bears an illustration of St. Mary's Church on the obverse.

Other denominations:

Banknote design credit: Bank of Danzig; photographed by Andrew Shiva

Danzig gulden

The Danzig gulden was the currency of the Free City of Danzig (present-day Gdańsk, Poland) between 1923 and 1939. Inflation in Danzig during 1922 had spiralled out of control, and the city abandoned the German Papiermark in favour of the Danzig gulden the following year. The issuance of the new gulden was overseen by the Bank of Danzig, established in early 1924. The obverse of each note shows the city's coat of arms on the left and an important local architectural structure in the centre. This fifty-gulden banknote, issued in 1931, bears an illustration of an 18th-century arcaded house on the obverse.

Other denominations:

Banknote design credit: Bank of Danzig; photographed by Andrew Shiva

Danzig gulden

The Danzig gulden was the currency of the Free City of Danzig (present-day Gdańsk, Poland) between 1923 and 1939. Inflation in Danzig during 1922 had spiralled out of control, and the city abandoned the German Papiermark in favour of the Danzig gulden the following year. The issuance of the new gulden was overseen by the Bank of Danzig, established in early 1924. The obverse of each note shows the city's coat of arms on the left and an important local architectural structure in the centre. This one-hundred-gulden specimen banknote, issued in 1931, bears an illustration of a dock scene beside the river Motława in the city centre on the obverse.

Other denominations:

Banknote design credit: Bank of Danzig; photographed by Andrew Shiva

Danzig gulden

The Danzig gulden was the currency of the Free City of Danzig (present-day Gdańsk, Poland) between 1923 and 1939. Inflation in Danzig during 1922 had spiralled out of control, and the city abandoned the German Papiermark in favour of the Danzig gulden the following year. The issuance of the new gulden was overseen by the Bank of Danzig, established in early 1924. The obverse of each note shows the city's coat of arms on the left and an important local architectural structure in the centre. This five-hundred-gulden banknote, issued in 1924, bears an illustration of the arsenal of Gdańsk on the obverse.

Other denominations:

Banknote design credit: Bank of Danzig; photographed by Andrew Shiva

Danzig gulden

The Danzig gulden was the currency of the Free City of Danzig (present-day Gdańsk, Poland) between 1923 and 1939. Inflation in Danzig during 1922 had spiralled out of control, and the city abandoned the German Papiermark in favour of the Danzig gulden the following year. The issuance of the new gulden was overseen by the Bank of Danzig, established in early 1924. The obverse of each note shows the city's coat of arms on the left and an important local architectural structure in the centre. This one-thousand-gulden banknote, issued in 1924, bears an illustration of Gdańsk's city hall on the obverse.

Other denominations:

Banknote design credit: Bank of Danzig; photographed by Andrew Shiva


January 15

Loie Fuller (January 15, 1862 – January 1, 1928) was an American actress and dancer who was a pioneer of techniques in both modern dance and theatrical lighting. She created the serpentine dance, but upon finding that her talents were unappreciated in the United States, she moved to Paris and received a warm reception there. She regularly performed at the Folies Bergère, and began adapting and expanding her costume and lighting, so that they became the principal features of her performance. Fuller unsuccessfully applied for a patent on the serpentine dance, to prevent imitators from copying her choreography. This 1901 film, entitled Loie Fuller, shows another dancer performing the dance.

Film credit: Segundo de Chomón


January 14

Thermoplastic-sheathed cable

A thermoplastic-sheathed cable consists of a toughened outer thermoplastic sheath of polyvinyl chloride, covering one or more individual annealed copper conductors. Each of the current-carrying conductors in the "core" is insulated by an individual thermoplastic sheath, coloured to indicate the purpose of the conductor concerned. The protective earth conductor may also be covered with insulation, although, in some countries, this conductor may be left as bare copper. The type of thermoplastic, the dimensions of the conductors and the colour of their individual insulation are specified by the regulatory bodies in the various countries concerned.

Photograph credit: Petar Milošević


January 13

Salmon P. Chase

Salmon P. Chase (January 13, 1808 – May 7, 1873) was an American politician and jurist who served as the sixth chief justice of the United States. He also served as the 23rd governor of Ohio and represented the state in the United States Senate. He served as the 25th secretary of the treasury, leading to his being featured on the last version of the U.S. $10,000 bill. He sought the Republican nomination for president in the 1860 presidential election, but the party chose Abraham Lincoln at the national convention. This line engraving of Chase was produced around 1902 by the Department of the Treasury's Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) as part of a BEP presentation album of the first 42 secretaries of the treasury.

Engraving credit: Bureau of Engraving and Printing; restored by Andrew Shiva


January 12

Venus with a Mirror

Venus with a Mirror is an oil-on-canvas painting created around 1555 by the Italian Renaissance painter Titian. The pose may have been inspired by the classical statues of the Venus de' Medici in Florence or the Capitoline Venus in Rome; the painting is said to celebrate the ideal beauty of the female form, or to be a critique of vanity, or perhaps both. X-ray analysis has revealed that it was painted over an earlier double portrait that Titian had abandoned. He kept the red cloak of one of the previous figures and placed it under Venus's arm. The use of the cloak from the earlier painting probably played a large part in the composition of the new work. The work is in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., where it is considered to be one of the highlights of the collection.

Painting credit: Titian


January 11

Ptyas mucosa

Ptyas mucosa, the Indian rat snake, is a common species of colubrid snake found in parts of southern and southeastern Asia. Growing to a length of 1.5 to 1.9 m (5 to 6 ft), they are very slender, diurnal and semi-arboreal. They inhabit forest floors, wetlands, rice paddies, and farmland, and are frequently found in urban areas where rodents thrive. They are harmless to humans, but are fast-moving and adept at catching the small mammals, birds, amphibians and other reptiles on which they feed, subduing their prey by lying on and suffocating them.

Photograph credit: Augustus Binu


January 10

The Consummation of Empire

The Consummation of Empire is the third in a series of five oil-on-canvas paintings entitled The Course of Empire, created by the American artist Thomas Cole between 1833 and 1836. The series, now in the collection of the New-York Historical Society, depicts the growth and fall of an imaginary city, situated at the lower end of a river valley. In this painting, the rural village has become a magnificent city, with colonnaded structures reminiscent of ancient Rome. A victorious hero is crossing a bridge in procession and about to pass under a triumphal arch. The architecture and embellishments illustrate that wealth, power, knowledge, and taste have worked together to reach the summit of human achievement and empire.

Painting credit: Thomas Cole


January 9

Coat of arms of Connecticut

This historical depiction of the coat of arms of Connecticut was illustrated by the American engraver Henry Mitchell in State Arms of the Union, published in 1876 by Louis Prang. The three grape vines on the shield may represent either the early towns of Windsor, Hartford and Wethersfield, or the three original colonies. An 1889 article by the state librarian stated: "The vines symbolize the Colony brought over and planted here in the wilderness. We read in the 80th Psalm: 'Thou hast brought a vine out of Egypt: Thou hast cast out the heathen, and planted it' ... and the motto expresses our belief that He who brought over the vine continues to take care of it – Qui transtulit sustinet."

Illustration credit: Henry Mitchell; restored by Andrew Shiva


January 8

Dallol

Dallol is a cinder-cone volcano in the Danakil Depression, northeast of the Erta Ale Range in Ethiopia. The area lies up to 120 m (390 ft) below sea level, and has been repeatedly flooded in the past when waters from the Red Sea have inundated it. The Danakil Depression is one of the hottest places on Earth, and the evaporation of seawater after these flooding episodes produced thick deposits of salt, as seen in this landscape. The deposits at Dallol include significant quantities of the carbonate, sulfate and chloride salts of sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium. Hot springs discharge brine to form the blueish ponds, and small, temporary geysers produce cones of salt.

Photograph credit: Alexander Savin


January 7

Millard Fillmore

Millard Fillmore (January 7, 1800 – March 8, 1874) was the 13th president of the United States, succeeding to the presidency in July 1850 upon the death of the incumbent Zachary Taylor. Born into poverty with little formal education, he became a successful attorney and was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1832. Never an advocate of slavery, he felt duty-bound as president to support the Compromise of 1850 that defused a political confrontation between slave and free states. He sought election to a full term in 1852, but was passed over by the Whigs in favor of Winfield Scott. This line engraving of Fillmore was produced around 1902 by the Department of the Treasury's Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) as part of a BEP presentation album of the first 26 presidents.

Engraving credit: Bureau of Engraving and Printing; restored by Andrew Shiva


January 6

The Adoration of the Kings

The Adoration of the Kings is an oil-on-panel painting depicting the scene of the Magi adoring the infant Jesus at the stable in Bethlehem, as related in the second chapter of the Gospel of Matthew. It was painted by the Netherlandish Renaissance artist Pieter Bruegel the Elder in 1564, and is now in the National Gallery, London. The painting treats the biblical episode in an unconventional manner; the onlookers are crowded around the mother and child, with everyone warmly clad except for Jesus himself. The Magi are depicted richly dressed but somewhat dishevelled, the soldiers are menacing, and the onlookers appear bewildered. The figures are slightly elongated, their faces caricatured or even grotesque, while Mary is shown natural and unidealised.

Painting credit: Pieter Bruegel the Elder


January 5

Shah Jahan

Shah Jahan (5 January 1592 – 22 January 1666) was the fifth Mughal emperor, reigning from 1628 to 1658. Under his rule, the Mughal Empire reached the peak of its cultural glory. He commissioned many monuments, the best known of which is the Taj Mahal in Agra, in which his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, is entombed. This rosette, or shamsa (sunburst), executed in ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper, forms the frontispiece to the Kevorkian Album, a muraqqa compiled by Shah Jahan, and bears his names and titles. The Arabic tughra inscription in the center translates to: "His Majesty Shihab ud-Din Muhammad Shah Jahan, the King, Warrior of the Faith, may God perpetuate his dominion and sovereignty".

Illustration credit: unknown


January 4

Yellow-faced honeyeater

The yellow-faced honeyeater (Caligavis chrysops) is a small-to-medium-sized bird in the honeyeater family, Meliphagidae, native to southeastern Australia. Its typical habitat is open sclerophyll forests, as well as woodland, riparian corridors, parks, orchards and gardens. Although some populations are resident, others migrate, using geomagnetic fields to navigate. Comparatively short-billed for a honeyeater, it has adapted to a mixed diet including nectar, pollen, fruit, seeds, honeydew, and insects. It is considered a pest in some areas because of the damage it does to fruit in orchards and urban gardens. This yellow-faced honeyeater was photographed near Lake Parramatta in New South Wales.

Photograph credit: John Harrison


January 3

Hendrik van de Sande Bakhuyzen

Hendrik van de Sande Bakhuyzen (1795–1860) was a 19th-century Dutch landscape painter and art teacher. He was a prominent contributor to the Romantic period in Dutch art, and his students and children founded the art movement known as the Hague School. He is known for his pastoral scenes (especially paintings of livestock) with detailed landscapes, notably inspired by Golden Age artist Paulus Potter and continuing the Realist tradition of that era. This oil-on-panel self-portrait by Van de Sande Bakhuyzen dates from 1850, and is in the collection of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.

Painting credit: Hendrik van de Sande Bakhuyzen

Recently featured:

January 2

Priscilla Horton

Priscilla Horton (2 January 1818 – 18 March 1895), was a popular English singer and actress. She was a favourite of James Planché, Charles Dickens and Madame Vestris, and a mentor to W. S. Gilbert. Horton was known for her agile dancing and clear contralto singing voice. This drawing depicts Horton in the role of Ariel in the final scene of Act 5 of Shakespeare's play The Tempest in 1838. Having married the theatrical manager Thomas German Reed in 1844, the pair presented and performed in "Mr. and Mrs. German Reed's Entertainments", consisting of brief, small-scale, family-friendly comic operas, which served to improve the opinion of theatre amongst the British public (it was widely considered a den of immorality at the time). The first professional production of Arthur Sullivan's comic opera Cox and Box was one of their entertainments.

Drawing credit: Richard James Lane; restored by Adam Cuerden

Recently featured:

January 1

Still life

A still life is a work of art depicting inanimate subject matter, typically either natural things such as flowers, dead animals, food, rocks or shells, or man-made objects. As a genre, still-life painting began with Netherlandish painting in the 16th and 17th centuries. The wealthy Dutch Empire's trade enabled the importation of spices, sugar and exotic fruits into the country, and new ingredients such as dates, rice, cinnamon, ginger, nuts, and saffron became available. This oil-on-panel still life from the 1620s by the Flemish artist Osias Beert is entitled Dishes with Oysters, Fruit, and Wine, and includes a rare early depiction of sugar in art. The painting now hangs in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

Painting credit: Osias Beert

Recently featured:

December 31

Fervaal

Fervaal is an opera with a prologue and three acts by the French composer Vincent d'Indy. Fervaal is the son of a Celtic king and is destined to be the last advocate of the old gods. His mission is to save his homeland from invasion and pillage, but in doing so he must renounce love. This illustration, by the Swiss painter Carlos Schwabe, relates to the 10 May 1898 premiere of the opera at the Théâtre de l'Opéra-Comique in Paris. Here, Fervaal is depicted ascending a mountain while carrying the body of his beloved Guilhen at the end of the opera, as the pagan gods and their worshippers fade out of existence with the dawn of Christianity.

Illustration credit: Carlos Schwabe; restored by Adam Cuerden


December 30

Llama

The llama (Lama glama) is a domesticated South American camelid, widely used as a meat and pack animal by Andean cultures since the pre-Columbian era. A full-grown llama can reach a height of 1.7 to 1.8 metres (5 ft 7 in to 5 ft 11 in) at the top of the head, and can weigh between 130 and 200 kilograms (290 and 440 lb). At birth, a baby llama (known as a cria) can weigh between 9 and 14 kilograms (20 and 31 lb). Llamas typically live for 15 to 25 years, with some individuals surviving 30 years or more. This photograph shows a dam (female llama) and her cria at Laguna Colorada in Eduardo Avaroa Andean Fauna National Reserve, Bolivia.

Photograph credit: Kallerna


December 29

Wounded Knee Massacre

The Wounded Knee Massacre was a massacre of Lakota people by soldiers of the United States Army that took place near Wounded Knee Creek, South Dakota, on December 29, 1890. In what was supposed to be a peaceful transport operation, troops of the 7th Cavalry engaged in battle with a contingent of Miniconjou and Hunkpapa Lakota, resulting in the deaths of more than 250 Lakota men, women and children, and 25 troopers. This photograph, taken three weeks after the massacre, shows Lakota corpses wrapped in blankets; the frozen bodies were subsequently collected and buried in a mass grave on a nearby hill.

Photograph credit: Trager & Kuhn; restored by Lise Broer


December 28

Thomas Ewing

Thomas Ewing (December 28, 1789 – October 26, 1871) was a country lawyer from Ohio who was elected to the United States Senate in 1830 as a Whig. He later served as Secretary of the Treasury and the first Secretary of the Interior. In the latter capacity, he earned the nickname "Butcher Ewing" because he replaced so many officials with political appointees. This line engraving of Ewing was produced around 1902 by the Department of the Treasury's Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) as part of a BEP presentation album of the first 42 secretaries of the treasury.

Engraving credit: Bureau of Engraving and Printing; restored by Andrew Shiva


December 27

Adoration of the Shepherds

The Adoration of the Shepherds is a theme in depictions of the Nativity in which shepherds are near witnesses to the birth of Jesus; the scene is based on the biblical account in Luke 2 and has inspired many artists over the years. The nativity scene typically shows shepherds and animals in the stable at Bethlehem, surrounding Mary and the Christ Child. In this 1662 oil painting of the Adoration by the Dutch Golden Age painter Gerard van Honthorst, Jesus is the centre of attention; the infant seems to glow, illuminating the surrounding figures. The work is in the collection of the Pomeranian State Museum in Germany.

Painting credit: Gerard van Honthorst


December 26

Arg-e Bam

The Arg-e Bam, in Kerman Province in southeastern Iran, is the largest adobe building in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The ancient citadel has a history dating back around two thousand years, to the Parthian Empire (248 BC – 224 AD), but most of its buildings were constructed during the Safavid dynasty. A strong earthquake on 26 December 2003 largely devastated the fortress and the nearby modern city of Bam. The Arg-e Bam, including the governor's residence, the main tower, the Four Seasons Palace and the hammam, were nearly totally destroyed; this photograph from 2016 shows the citadel partially reconstructed.

Photograph credit: Diego Delso


December 25

Pope Pius VI

Pope Pius VI (25 December 1717 – 29 August 1799) was the head of the Roman Catholic Church and ruler of the Papal States from 15 February 1775 until his death in 1799. He condemned the French Revolution and the resulting suppression of the Catholic Church in France. In 1796, French troops commanded by Napoleon Bonaparte defeated the papal troops and occupied the Papal States. Refusing to renounce his temporal power, Pius was taken prisoner and transported to France. He died in exile six weeks later in Valence, having reigned for longer than any previous pope. This 1775 oil-on-panel portrait of Pius VI by the Italian painter Pompeo Batoni is in the collection of the National Gallery of Ireland.

Painting credit: Pompeo Batoni


December 24

Ambrosius Bosschaert

Ambrosius Bosschaert (1573–1621) was a Flemish-born Dutch still-life painter and art dealer. A rising interest in botany and a passion for flowers led to an increase in still-life paintings of flowers at the end of the 1500s in the Netherlands and Germany, and Bosschaert was the first great Dutch specialist in the genre. In this oil-on-copper painting, butterflies, a dragonfly, a bumblebee and a caterpillar are nestled among roses, forget-me-nots, lilies-of-the-valley, tulips and other flowers. The painting is in the collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, California.

Painting credit: Ambrosius Bosschaert


December 23

Krestovsky Stadium

The Krestovsky Stadium is the home ground of FC Zenit Saint Petersburg. Photographed here in 2016, when construction was nearing completion, it is situated on Krestovsky Island in the Russian city of Saint Petersburg. It was opened in 2017 as a venue for the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup, and hosted the final, in which Germany beat Chile 1–0. It was one of the venues for the 2018 FIFA World Cup the following year. Among other features, it has a retractable roof, and is equipped with a video-surveillance and identification system, as well as security-alarm, fire-alarm and robotic fire-extinguishing systems. The stadium's seating capacity is 67,800.

Photograph credit: Andrew Shiva


December 22

Haydée

Haydée is an opéra comique by the French composer Daniel Auber, first performed by the Théâtre Royal de l'Opéra-Comique at the Salle Favart in Paris on 28 December 1847. The libretto, based on a short story by Prosper Mérimée, was written by Eugène Scribe. The plot is set during the 16th-century wars between the Republic of Venice and the Ottoman Empire, and involves a naval commander with a guilty secret, his ward, his slave girl, a handsome captain and a villainous spy. After much confusion and intrigue, everything ends happily for the main protagonists. This illustration shows Philippe Chaperon's set design for the second act of a 1891 Opéra-Comique performance of Haydée at the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris.

Set design and illustration credit: Philippe Chaperon; restored by Adam Cuerden


December 21

Anne Vallayer-Coster

Anne Vallayer-Coster (21 December 1744 – 28 February 1818) was an 18th-century French painter, best known for her still-life works. When she was 26, she was admitted to the prestigious Académie royale de peinture et de sculpture; Vallayer-Coster was one of only four women to be accepted into the Académie before the French Revolution, in a period when men dominated the profession. By 1780, she had come under the patronage of Marie Antoinette, after which her career flourished. This 1783 oil-on-canvas portrait, showing Vallayer-Coster at work, is by the Swedish painter Alexander Roslin. The painting is in the collection of the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, California.

Painting credit: Alexander Roslin


December 20

Violet-backed starling

The violet-backed starling (Cinnyricinclus leucogaster) is a relatively small species of starling, common in most of sub-Saharan Africa. It is strongly sexually dimorphic, with the male's iridescent violet plumage contrasting with the heavily streaked brown female. A bird of open woodland, clearings and gallery forests, it feeds in the treetops, with its diet including fruits, seeds and insects. It nests in tree cavities, with green leaves and dung having been recorded as nesting materials. The female incubates the clutch of two to four eggs, and the male helps rear the young until they fledge about three weeks after hatching. This male violet-backed starling, of the subspecies C. l. verreauxi, was photographed in Damaraland, Namibia.

Photograph credit: Charles J. Sharp


December 19

NGC 6357

NGC 6357 is a diffuse nebula in the constellation Scorpius. This composite image of the nebula contains X-ray data from the Chandra X-ray Observatory and the ROSAT telescope (purple), infrared data from the Spitzer Space Telescope (orange), and optical data from the SuperCosmos Sky Survey (blue). Radiation from hot, young stars is energizing the cooler gas in the clouds that surround them. Often known as the Lobster Nebula, the astronomical object has also been termed the Madokami Nebula by fans of the anime Madoka Magica due to its supposed resemblance to the main character. Scientists at the Midcourse Space Experiment prefer the name War and Peace Nebula, because the bright, western part resembles a dove, while the eastern part looks like a skull in infrared images.

Photograph credit: NASA


December 18

English Gothic architecture

English Gothic architecture is an architectural style that flourished in England from the late 12th to the mid-16th century. The style was most prominently used in the construction of cathedrals and churches. The defining features of Gothic architecture are pointed arches, rib vaults, buttresses, and extensive use of stained glass. This photograph shows the Gothic cloisters at Gloucester Cathedral, which have the earliest surviving fan vaults in the country, designed between 1351 and 1377. These cloisters were used as a backdrop in three of the Harry Potter films.

Photograph credit: Christopher J. T. Cherrington


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