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Wikipedia:Picture of the day/August 2015


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A monthly archive of the English Wikipedia's pictures of the day

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These featured pictures have previously appeared (or will appear) as picture of the day (POTD) on the Main Page, as scheduled below. You can add the automatically updating picture of the day to your userpage or talk page using {{Pic of the day}} (version with blurb) or {{POTD}} (version without blurb). For instructions on how to make custom POTD layouts, see Wikipedia:Picture of the day.Purge server cache


August 1
Wrestlers

Wrestlers is an oil painting on canvas completed by Thomas Eakins in 1899. It depicts two nearly naked men engaged in a wrestling match, with one holding the other in a half nelson and crotch hold. Eakins painted the work using a photograph of models as a study; for the background, he used the Quaker City Barge Club on Philadelphia's Boathouse Row. This painting, as well as an oil sketch, are held at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; an unfinished version is held by the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Painting: Thomas Eakins


August 2
Prague astronomical clock

The face of the Prague astronomical clock in the Old Town Square of Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic. The dial takes the form of a mechanical astrolabe, a device used in medieval astronomy, and represents the standing Earth and sky; surrounding it are four moving components: the zodiacal ring, an outer rotating ring, an icon representing the Sun, and an icon representing the Moon. The clock was installed in 1410 by clockmakers Mikuláš of Kadaň and Jan Šindel.

Photograph: Andrew Shiva


August 3
Nine Dragons

Nine Dragons is a handscroll painting by Chinese artist Chen Rong from 1244. Depicting the apparitions of dragons soaring amidst clouds, mists, whirlpools, rocky mountains and fire, the painting refers to the dynamic forces of nature in Daoism. The depicted dragons are associated with nine sons of the Dragon King, while the number nine itself is considered auspicious in Chinese astrology and folk beliefs. The work is now in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.

Painting: Chen Rong


August 4
Louis Armstrong

Louis Armstrong (1901–1971) was an American jazz trumpeter and singer. Born into poverty in New Orleans, he developed his trumpet- and cornet-playing skills in a variety of locations, including dance halls and a juvenile detention center. In the 1920s, he gained prominence playing in Chicago and New York, where he was recognized for his inventive playing style and gravelly vocals. He remained active his entire life, performing in hundreds of gigs a year, appearing in multiple films and television shows, and releasing his greatest hit, "Hello, Dolly!", in 1964.

Photograph: Herman Hiller; restoration: Lise Broer


August 5
Locomotive U-127

Locomotive U-127 is a 4-6-0 steam locomotive of class U, preserved at the Museum of the Moscow Railway next to Paveletsky Rail Terminal in Moscow. Built in 1910, the locomotive was badly damaged during the Russian Civil War but restored in May 1923. The following year it hauled head of state Vladimir Lenin's funeral train from Gerasimovskaya to Paveletsky station. For the next 13 years it continued in passenger service, until it was withdrawn in 1937, restored, and preserved.

Photograph: Harveyqs


August 6
Eurasian sparrowhawk

A male Eurasian sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus) capturing a common starling. This small bird of prey species is found throughout the temperate and subtropical parts of the Old World, and though it specialises in catching woodland birds it can be found in any habitat. Males tend to take smaller birds, including tits, finches, and sparrows, while the larger females catch primarily thrushes and starlings.

Photograph: Pierre Dalous; edit: Nikhil


August 7
Map of Vatican City

A map of Vatican City (click for full resolution), highlighting notable buildings and the Vatican Gardens. The world's smallest independent state and the episcopal see of the Pope, Vatican City is entirely surrounded by the Italian city of Rome. As such, its geography is primarily urban and its climate similar to Italy's.

Map: Thoroe


August 8
The Taking of Lungtungpen
"The Taking of Lungtungpen" is a short story by Rudyard Kipling first published in the Civil and Military Gazette on April 11, 1887. It follows four British soldiers in Burma who capture a dacoit stronghold named Lungtungpen while in the nude.

In this illustration from the 1896 edition of Soldier Tales, Private Mulvaney and a group of naked soldiers fight the dacoits; Mulvaney finds "There was a melly av a sumpshus kind for a whoile."

See another illustrationIllustration: Archibald Standish Hartrick; restoration: Adam Cuerden


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August 9
Nazaré, Portugal

A panoramic view of the beach and promontory at Nazaré, Portugal. This town, in the Oeste Subregion, is a popular resort and surfing venue. It consists of three neighborhoods: Praia, which is along the beach, and Sítio and Pederneira, which are on the hilltop.

Photograph: Joaquim Alves Gaspar

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August 10
Lesser kestrel

Mating lesser kestrels (Falco naumanni) in Hérault, France. The breeding range of this small bird of prey goes from the Mediterranean across southern central Asia to China and Mongolia.

Photograph: Pierre Dalous

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August 11
Stockwell Garage

An interior view of Stockwell Garage, a large bus garage in Stockwell, London, designed by Adie, Button and Partners and opened in 1952. The 393 ft (120 m) long roof structure, seen here, is supported by ten very shallow "two-hinged" arched ribs, between which are cantilevered barrel vaults topped by large skylights. The garage, which could originally hold 200 buses, has been a Grade II* Listed Building since 1988.

Photograph: David Iliff

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August 12
Ein Avdat

Ein Avdat, a canyon in the Negev Desert of southern Israel, as seen from Midreshet Ben-Gurion. Numerous springs at the southern opening of the canyon empty into deep pools in series of waterfalls. The water emerges from the rock layers with salt-loving plants like poplars and atriplexes growing nearby. Archaeological evidence indicates that the canyon has been inhabited for more than 80,000 years, dating back at least to the Mousterian culture.

Photograph: Andrew Shiva


August 13
Caenorhabditis elegans diagram

A lateral (left side) anatomical diagram of an adult-stage nematode hermaphrodite Caenorhabditis elegans (full size) with emphasis on the digestive and reproductive systems. C. elegans is a free-living, transparent nematode (roundworm) which measures about 1 millimetre (0.039 in) in length. The hermaphrodite form, as seen here, is the most common, although a male form is also found. When self-inseminated, the species will lay about 300 eggs, but when the hermaphrodite is inseminated by a male, the number of progeny can exceed 1,000.

Diagram: K.D. Schroeder


August 14
Whistlejacket

Whistlejacket is an oil painting on canvas completed by the British Artist George Stubbs in c. 1762. It shows the Marquess of Rockingham's racehorse approximately at lifesize and in considerable detail, rising to a levade against a plain background. The composition was unprecedented at the time and the painting received popular acclaim. The painting was held by the Fitzwilliam family until 1997, when it was purchased by the National Gallery, London.

Painting: George Stubbs; edit: Chris Woodrich


August 15
Taxicabs of Hong Kong

A row of taxis in front of the International Commerce Centre in Kowloon, Hong Kong. The 18,138 licensed taxicabs of Hong Kong are predominantly independently owned and operated, though some are owned by taxi companies. The majority of taxis are Toyota Comforts.

The taxis' tariffs and service areas are indicated by the colour of their livery. Red taxis, seen here, have the highest fares but serve the greatest area. Green taxis serve the New Territories and are less expensive. Blue taxis are the least expensive, but are limited to southern Lantau Island.

Photograph: Diego Delso


August 16
Oriental pratincole

The oriental pratincole (Glareola maldivarum) is a wader in the pratincole family. This migratory Asian bird feeds predominantly on insects.

Photograph: JJ Harrison


August 17
Kalasan Temple

Kalasan Temple is an 8th-century Buddhist temple (candi) located 13 kilometres (8 mi) east of Yogyakarta, Java. The temple stands 14.2 metres (47 ft) high and is intricately decorated with Buddhist designs, including a scene from svarga.

Photograph: Chris Woodrich


August 18
Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park is a U.S. National Park in southeastern California named for the Joshua trees (Yucca brevifolia) native to the park. Created in 1994 when the U.S. Congress passed the California Desert Protection Act, the park covers a land area of 790,636 acres (1,235.37 sq mi; 3,199.59 km2). The park includes parts of two deserts, the Mojave and Colorado, as well as the Little San Bernardino Mountains.

Photograph: Tuxyso


August 19
Craig retroazimuthal projection

The Craig retroazimuthal is a modified cylindrical map projection created by James Ireland Craig in 1909. It preserves the direction from any place to one other, predetermined place while avoiding some of the distortion of the Hammer retroazimuthal projection. This projection is sometimes known as the Mecca projection because Craig, who had worked in Egypt as a cartographer, created it to help Muslims find the qibla.

Map: Strebe, using Geocart


August 20
Atlantic puffin

Atlantic puffin (Fratercula arctica) is a species of seabird in the auk family. The only puffin native to the Atlantic Ocean, it breeds in Iceland, Norway, Greenland, Newfoundland and many North Atlantic islands. The species spends the autumn and winter in the open ocean, returning to coastal areas in late spring and nesting in clifftop colonies. The Atlantic puffin has a large population and a wide range, and is thus not considered endangered.

Photograph: Richard Bartz


August 21
Fractional currency
A first-issue 5¢ ($0.05) note of U.S. fractional currency, depicting Thomas Jefferson on the obverse. Released between 21 August 1862 and 27 May 1863 in response to a coin shortage caused by the American Civil War, this first issue was based on Treasurer Francis E. Spinner's handmade examples of a currency based on postage stamps and included four denominations. Though not legal tender, postage currency could be exchanged for United States Notes in $5 lots and was receivable in payment of all dues to the United States, up to $5. Four additional issues followed before fractional currency was discontinued in 1876.

Other denominations: 10¢, 25¢, 50¢Banknote: National Banknote Company & the Treasury Department (image courtesy of the National Numismatic Collection, National Museum of American History)


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August 22
Bryce Amphitheater

A panoramic view of the Bryce Amphitheater in Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah, as seen from Sunrise Point. It is the largest amphitheater in the park, measuring 12 miles (19 km) long, 3 miles (4.8 km) wide and 800 feet (240 m) deep. Bryce Canyon National Park, which was designated a National Park in 1928, consists of numerous natural amphitheaters and is distinguished by its hoodoos.

Photograph: Tuxyso

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August 23
Freestyle Motocross

Spanish rider Maikel Melero at an exhibition in Jarama Circuit, performing the "Rock Solid" trick. Freestyle Motocross is a variation on the sport of motocross in which motorcycle riders attempt to impress judges with jumps and stunts. Riders may either perform routines of a set duration or a number of tricks in one jump, and then are scored on a scale of 100.

Photograph: Carlos Delgado

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August 24
Downtown Tampa

A view of the skyline of downtown Tampa, Florida, as viewed from the Embassy Terrace Hotel. Downtown is the central business district of the city, as well as the chief financial district of the Tampa Bay Area. It is second only to Westshore in employment. It is also home to several museums and cultural centers.

Photograph: Joaquim Alves Gaspar

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August 25
Djurgårdsbrunnskanalen

Djurgårdsbrunnskanalen is a canal in central Stockholm, Sweden, that runs for 1 km (0.6 mi) from Lilla Värtan to Djurgårdsbrunnsviken and separates the island of Djurgården from the northern mainland. Construction of the canal began in 1825 and was completed in 1832.

Photograph: Arild Vågen


August 26
All Saints Church, Odiham

All Saints Church is an Anglican church in the village of Odiham, Hampshire. The oldest visible parts of the current church, the chancel and the base of the tower, date back to the 13th century; several additions, including the tower and the nave, were built over subsequent centuries. English Heritage has designated the All Saints Church as a grade I listed building.

Photograph: Lewis Hulbert; edits: Jacek Halicki and Christian Ferrer


August 27
Blue-winged pitta

The blue-winged pitta (Pitta moluccensis) is a passerine bird in the family Pittidae native to Australia and Southeast Asia. This small bird, measuring 180 to 205 mm (7.1–8.1 in) in length, is found in a variety of habitats to an altitude of 800 m (2500 ft).

Photograph: JJ Harrison


August 28
Katie Green

Katie Green (b. 1987) is an English model from Chichester, West Sussex, who began her career in the mid-2000s. She is unusual among models because of her height (5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)) and weight (10 stone 5 pounds (66 kg; 145 lb) in 2011); she refuses to lose weight to conform to norms agencies expect of models, and has initiated a campaign against size zero models. Green continues to model and has represented Ultimo and Sony Bravia, and appeared in numerous publications and campaigns.

Photograph: Nguyen Dinh Quoc-Huy; edit: Keraunoscopia


August 29
Impala

A female impala (Aepyceros melampus) photographed at Mikumi National Park, Tanzania. These medium-sized African antelopes inhabit savanna grasslands and woodlands close to water sources, feeding on grasses, forbs, monocots, dicots and foliage. They are fast runners and known for their leaping ability, reaching heights up to 3 m (10 ft).

Photograph: Muhammad Mahdi Karim


August 30
Nighthawks

Nighthawks is an oil painting on canvas completed by the American artist Edward Hopper in 1942. It portrays people in a downtown diner late at night. The painting is held by the Art Institute of Chicago, which purchased it within months of its completion. The painting has frequently been referenced in American popular culture, and several writers have searched for its real-life inspiration.

Painting: Edward Hopper


August 31
Simon Neil

Simon Neil (b. 1979) is a Scottish vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter. Born in Irvine, he established the band Biffy Clyro in 1995 with James and Ben Johnston. He has also played with JP Reid of Sucioperro in Marmaduke Duke, using the pseudonym "The Atmosphere", and started a solo career.

Photograph: Achim Raschka

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