Open main menu

Wikipedia:Picture of the day/August 2016

Featured content:

Featured picture tools:

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

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
Soldiers Playing Cards and Dice

Soldiers Playing Cards and Dice (also known as The Cheats), c. 1618–1620, by Valentin de Boulogne (c. 1590 – 1632). Born in Coulommiers, France, Valentin was the son of a painter and studied in Italy under Simon Vouet.

Painting: Valentin de Boulogne

August 2

Wah-ro-née-sah (The Surrounder), an Otoe chief, as painted by George Catlin in c. 1832. He was described by Catlin as "quite an old man; his shirt made of the skin of a grizzly bear, with the claws on".

Painting: George Catlin

August 3
Hubble Ultra-Deep Field

The 2014 edition of the Hubble Ultra-Deep Field, a composite image of separate exposures taken from 2003 to 2012 with the Hubble Space Telescope, and showing the full range of ultraviolet to near-infrared light. Made from 841 orbits of telescope viewing time, the image contains approximately 10,000 galaxies, extending back in time to within a few hundred million years of the Big Bang.

Photograph: NASA, ESA, IPAC/Caltech, STScI, ASU

August 4

The SAI KZ IV was a light twin-engined aircraft first built in Denmark in 1944 for use as an air ambulance. A single machine was built during the war, and was used by Folke Bernadotte while negotiating for the release of Danish prisoners in German concentration camps. It is now held by the Danmarks Flymuseum and has been restored to its original wartime configuration and markings. A second aircraft was built and flown in 1949, remaining actively operational until the mid 1960s.

Photograph: Slaunger

August 5
Neil Armstrong

Neil Armstrong (1930–2012) was photographed in the cabin of the Apollo 11 Lunar Module after becoming the first person to walk on the Moon and spending two and a half hours outside the spacecraft along with Buzz Aldrin. Armstrong, an American astronaut, joined the NASA Astronaut Corps in 1962 after participating in the U.S. Air Force's Man in Space Soonest and X-20 Dyna-Soar human spaceflight programs. He commanded Apollo 11, his second and final spaceflight, in July 1969, after commanding the Gemini 8 Earth orbital mission in 1966.

Photograph: Buzz Aldrin

August 6
City of Bath

A panoramic view of Bath, Somerset, looking north from Alexandra Park. The English city, known for its Roman Baths and Georgian architecture, had a population of 88,859 in 2011. It is home to software, publishing and service-oriented industries, and a bustling tourist industry which hosts more than 1 million staying visitors and 3.8 million day visitors annually.

Photograph: David Iliff

August 7
Nils Torvalds

Nils Torvalds (b. 1945) is a Swedish-speaking Finnish broadcast journalist, writer and politician, who is serving as a Member of the European Parliament. Born in Ekenäs, Torvalds has been active in politics since he was a college student in the 1960s. He is the son of Ole Torvalds and the father of Linus Torvalds.

Photograph: David Iliff

August 8
Mandarin duck

A male and female mandarin duck (Aix galericulata) at Martin Mere, Lancashire, United Kingdom, showing the sexual dimorphism of the species. The adult male has a red bill, large white crescent above the eye and reddish face and "whiskers", as well as a purple breast with two vertical white bars, and ruddy flanks. The female is similar to female wood duck, with a white eye-ring and stripe running back from the eye, but is paler below, has a small white flank stripe, and a pale tip to its bill.

This species was once widespread in East Asia, but large-scale exports and the destruction of its forest habitat have reduced populations. A large feral population has been established in Great Britain.

Photograph: Francis C. Franklin

August 9
Equirectangular projection

The equirectangular projection is a simple map projection attributed to Marinus of Tyre, who Ptolemy claims invented the projection about AD 100. The projection maps meridians to vertical straight lines of constant spacing, and circles of latitude to horizontal straight lines of constant spacing. The projection is neither equal area nor conformal. Because of the distortions introduced by this projection, it has few applications beyond base imagery to be reprojected to some more useful projection.

Map: Strebe, using Geocart

August 10
Portrait of a Young Woman

Portrait of a Young Woman is a tempera painting on wood which is commonly believed to be by the Italian Renaissance painter Sandro Botticelli, but also attributed to Jacopo del Sellaio. Executed between 1480 and 1485, it shows a woman in profile but with her bust turned in three-quarter view to reveal a cameo medallion around her neck. The painting is in the Städel museum, Frankfurt, Germany.

Painting: Attributed to Sandro Botticelli

August 11
Sharp-tailed sandpiper

The sharp-tailed sandpiper (Calidris acuminata) is a small wader. It breeds in the boggy tundra of northeast Asia and is strongly migratory, wintering in south east Asia and Australasia.

Photograph: JJ Harrison

August 12
Selwyn College, Cambridge

Old Court at Selwyn College. This constituent college of the University of Cambridge in England was founded by the Selwyn Memorial Committee in memory of George Selwyn (1809–1878). The college consists of three main courts built of brick and stone (Old Court, Cripps Court, and Ann's Court), as well as several ancillary buildings. Selwyn College was ranked 16th out of 30 in an assessment of college wealth conducted by the student newspaper Varsity in November 2006, and in 2009 it was ranked 3rd out of the 29 colleges which admit undergraduate students on the Tompkins Table.

Photograph: David Iliff

August 13
Brahmaea wallichii

Brahmaea wallichii, also known as the owl moth, is a moth from the family Brahmaeidae. With a wingspan of about 90–160 mm (3.5–6.3 in), it is one of the largest species of Brahmin moth. This nocturnal species is found in India, Bhutan, Myanmar, China, Taiwan and Japan.

Photograph: Arthur Chapman; edit: Papa Lima Whiskey and Ryan Kaldari

August 14

An assignat banknote, issued in 1792, with a face value of 400 livres. An early French banknote first issued in 1789, during the French Revolution, the assignat was backed by the value of seized properties. Amidst widespread counterfeiting, limited use, and opposition from counter-revolutionaries, the assignat devalued quickly and was replaced by the mandat in 1796.

Banknote: République Française; image courtesy of the National Numismatic Collection at the National Museum of American History (Smithsonian Institution)

August 15
Underwater photographer

Shane Tuck, a United States Navy mass communication specialist, conducting underwater photography training off the coast of Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in 2012. Underwater photography is usually done while scuba diving, but can also be done while diving on surface supply, snorkeling, swimming, from a submersible or remotely operated underwater vehicle, or from automated cameras lowered from the surface. It frequently requires specialized equipment and techniques.

Photograph: Jayme Pastoric/US Navy

August 16
SMS Seeadler

SMS Seeadler was a German unprotected cruiser of the Bussard class. Built at the Imperial Shipyard in Danzig in late 1890, Seeadler was armed with a main battery of eight 10.5-centimeter (4.1 in) guns and had a top speed of 15.5 knots (28.7 km/h; 17.8 mph). She spent almost her entire career abroad, mostly in German East Africa and German New Guinea. Decommissioned in 1914, during World War I Seeadler was used as a mine storage hulk outside Wilhelmshaven. On 19 April 1917, her cargo of mines exploded and destroyed the ship.

Seeadler is shown here during a visit to the United States for the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus's voyage to the Americas.

Photograph: Detroit Photographic Co.; restoration: Adam Cuerden

August 17

Sulfur mining near the one-kilometer-wide turquoise-colored acidic crater lake at the Ijen volcano complex, a group of stratovolcanoes in the Banyuwangi Regency of East Java, Indonesia. During the mining process, sulfur-laden baskets are carried by hand from the crater floor. The work is paid well relative to the cost of living in the area, but very onerous.

Photograph: Sémhur

August 18
Sgùrr nan Gillean

Sgùrr nan Gillean is a mountain in the northern section of the Cuillin range on the Isle of Skye in Scotland. With a height of 964 m (3162 feet), it is one of eleven Munros on the Cuillin ridge.

Photograph: David Iliff

August 19
Manuel L. Quezon

Manuel L. Quezon (1878–1944) was a Filipino statesman, soldier, and politician who served as president of the Commonwealth of the Philippines from 1935 to 1944. He is considered to have been the second president of the Philippines, after Emilio Aguinaldo (1897–1901). During his presidency, Quezon tackled the problem of landless peasants in the countryside, reorganized the islands' military defense, promoted settlement and development in Mindanao, and opposed graft and corruption within the government. He established an exiled government in the U.S. with the outbreak of the war and the threat of Japanese invasion.

Photograph: United States Office of War Information; restoration: Chris Woodrich

August 20
Morpho didius

A ventral view of Morpho didius, a Neotropical butterfly belonging to the subfamily Morphinae of family Nymphalidae. With a wingspan reaching 150 mm (5.9 in), it is one of the largest of Morpho species.

Photograph: Didier Descouens

August 21
Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe

Le Déjeuner sur l’herbe is a large oil on canvas painting by Édouard Manet created in 1862 and 1863. It depicts a female nude and a scantily dressed female bather on a picnic with two fully dressed men in a rural setting. Rejected by the Salon jury of 1863, Manet seized the opportunity to exhibit this and two other paintings in the 1863 Salon des Refusés, where the painting sparked public notoriety and controversy. The piece is now in the Musée d'Orsay in Paris.

Painting: Edouard Manet

August 22
Trojan Room coffee pot

The Trojan Room coffee pot was the inspiration for the world's first webcam. The coffee pot was located in the corridor just outside the so-called Trojan Room within the old Computer Laboratory of the University of Cambridge. The webcam was created in 1991 to help people working in other parts of the building avoid pointless trips to the coffee pot by providing, on the user's desktop computer, a live 128×128 pixel greyscale picture of the state of the coffee pot. The webcam was shut down on 22 August 2001, following the Computer Laboratory's move to the William Gates Building.

Picture: Quentin Stafford-Fraser

August 23
Coventry Cathedral

The interior of Coventry Cathedral, an Anglican church located in Coventry, West Midlands, England. This Modernist structure was designed by Basil Spence and built between 1956 and 1962 to replace a 14th-century Gothic church which had been destroyed by bombing during the Second World War. This cathedral is the seat of the Bishop of Coventry and the Diocese of Coventry.

Photograph: David Iliff

August 24
William I of the Netherlands

William I (1772–1843) was a Prince of Orange and the first King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg. William implemented controversial language policies, founded many trade institutions and universities, and adopted a new constitution. However, the southern Netherlands became increasingly marginalized, and in 1830 the Belgian Revolution broke out. The war against the newly-declared Belgium caused considerable economic distress for the Netherlands, and in 1839 William signed the Treaty of London, which recognized Belgium. William abdicated the following year.

Painting: Joseph Paelinck

August 25
Black-fronted dotterel

The black-fronted dotterel (Elseyornis melanops) is a small, slender plover found in Australia and New Zealand. It is common in freshwater wetlands, where it can be found feeding on insects and other small creatures.

Photograph: JJ Harrison

August 26
Little Nemo

The September 29, 1907, edition of Little Nemo in Slumberland, a comic strip by Winsor McCay. This full-page weekly strip, which ran variously in the New York Herald and New York American under different titles, depicted a young boy named Nemo having fantastic dreams that were interrupted by his awakening in the final panel. In this episode, Nemo dreams of himself and the Little Imp exploring the big city as giants.

Comic: Winsor McCay

August 27
Quaker guns

Quaker guns in former Confederate fortifications at Manassas Junction, Virginia, in March 1862. Quaker guns were widely used as a deception tactic in warfare during the 18th and 19th centuries. Although resembling an actual cannon, the Quaker gun was simply a wooden log, usually painted black. The name derives from the Religious Society of Friends, or Quakers, who have traditionally held a religious opposition to war and violence in the Peace Testimony.

Photograph: George N. Barnard and James F. Gibson; restoration: Adam Cuerden

August 28
James Webb Space Telescope

NASA engineer Ernie Wright looks on as the first six flight-ready primary mirror segments for the James Webb Space Telescope are prepped to begin final cryogenic testing at the Marshall Space Flight Center. Intended to serve as a replacement for the Hubble Space Telescope and the Spitzer Space Telescope, the James Webb Space Telescope is currently under construction and scheduled to launch in October 2018. It is expected to enable a broad range of investigations across the fields of astronomy and cosmology.

Photograph: NASA/MSFC/David Higginbotham

August 29
Magdalene College, Cambridge, dining hall

The dining hall at Magdalene College, Cambridge. Built in the early 16th century, the hall is used for Formal Hall. Fellows and their guests dine at the High Table, placed on a platform one step above ground level at the far end of the hall. Students dine at three long benches in front of and perpendicular to the High Table and spanning to the entrance.

Magdalene College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge. It was founded in 1428 as a Benedictine hostel. Today it is one of the smaller constituent colleges.

Photograph: David Iliff; edit: Adam Cuerden

August 30
Kampoeng Rawa

Kampoeng Rawa is a tourist attraction in Ambarawa, Central Java, located within the green belt around Lake Rawa Pening. Opened in August 2012, it is owned and operated by twelve groups of farmers and fishermen who were funded by the Artha Prima Credit Union. It is intended to improve the welfare of local farmers and fishermen while promoting an understanding of the lake's ecology. Facilities include a floating restaurant, pendopo, crafts centre, fishing area, and docks. It has been challenged for its lack of permission to build in the green belt and the possible ecological impact.

Photograph: Chris Woodrich

August 31
Joseph and Potiphar's Wife

Joseph and Potiphar's Wife is a 1634 etching by Rembrandt. It depicts a story from the Bible, wherein Potiphar's Wife attempts to seduce Joseph. It is signed and dated "Rembrandt f. 1634" and exists in two states. Described as "unprecedented in its erotic candor", and a stark contrast with the classicism of the conventional nude, the etching was not widely distributed in Rembrandt's lifetime.

Etching: Rembrandt

Picture of the day archive

Today is Wednesday, November 20, 2019; it is currently 15:26 UTC.