The Groundhog Day Blizzard was a powerful winter storm which affected parts of the United States and Canada between January 31 and February 2, 2011. The storm brought cold air, heavy snowfall, blowing snow, and mixed precipitation on a path from New Mexico and northern Texas to New England and Eastern Canada. The heaviest snowfall was in Antioch, Illinois, with 27.0 in (69 cm), while Cashtown, Pennsylvania, had the largest ice accretion of 1.0 in (2.5 cm). The storm caused at least 36 deaths, and damages of US$1.8 billion.Video: NASA Earth Observatory
The Harvesters is an oil painting on wood completed by Pieter Bruegel the Elder in 1565. It was commissioned by Nicolaes Jonghelinck, a merchant banker and art collector from Antwerp. Depicting the harvest, in July, August or late summer, the painting is one in a series of six works representing different times of the year. As in many of his paintings, the focus is on peasants and their work and does not have the religious themes common in landscape works of the time. The painting is in the permanent collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, which has described it as a "watershed in the history of Western art".Painting: Pieter Bruegel the Elder
Francis Bourgeois (1753–1811) was a British landscape and history painter, and court painter to King George III of the United Kingdom. In the late 18th century he became an art dealer and collector in association with Frenchman Noel Desenfans. The pair were commissioned by Polish king Stanisław August Poniatowski to compile a collection of paintings, which they spent five years doing, but Stanisław's exile in 1795 meant the contract could not be completed and they were left with a large art collection. Bourgeois outlived Desenfans and bequeathed them to Dulwich College with an additional £2000 to build a permanent building, which became the Dulwich Picture Gallery, England's first purpose-built public art gallery.
This magazine cover, published 65 years ago today, features a photo of the actress Lies Noor. Born c. 1938, Noor was rapidly becoming a popular actress when this photo was published in 1954. During her career, she appeared in a number of films including Rajuan Alam (1956) and Pedjuang (1960). Noor died in 1961 of encephalitis at the age of 23.Uncredited. Restored by Chris Woodrich
Panoramic view of the Amphitheatre of El Jem, an archeological site in the city of El Djem, Tunisia. The amphitheatre, one of the best-preserved Roman ruins and a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979, was built around 238 AD, when modern Tunisia belonged to the Roman province of Africa. It is the third-biggest amphitheatre in the world, with axes of 148 m (486 ft) and 122 m (400 ft) and a seating capacity of 35,000, unique in Africa.Photograph: Poco a poco
The common black hawk (Buteogallus anthracinus) is a bird of prey in the family Accipitridae, which also includes the eagles, hawks, and Old World vultures. The mangrove black hawk, traditionally thought to be a distinct species, is now generally considered a subspecies, B. a. subtilis, of the common black hawk.
This picture shows a bird of the Buteogallus anthracinus gundlachii subspecies, in Cuba.Photograph: Charles J. Sharp
Abraham Lincoln (February 12, 1809 – April 15, 1865) was an American lawyer and politician who served as the 16th president of the United States from 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. Lincoln led the nation through the Civil War, its bloodiest war and its greatest moral, constitutional, and political crisis. Born in Kentucky into a poor family, Lincoln educated himself and worked as a lawyer in Illinois before entering politics. A powerful orator and astute politician, Lincoln used his Gettysburg Address to promote nationalism, republicanism, equal rights, liberty, and democracy. He has been consistently ranked as one of the greatest US presidents, by both scholars and the public.Engraving: Bureau of Engraving and Printing; restoration: Andrew Shiva
Diana and Endymion is an oil-on-canvas painting by Francesco Solimena, produced between 1705 and 1710. The painting depicts the Roman goddess Diana, one of the twelve Gods and Goddesses of Olympus, falling in love with Endymion, a symbol of timeless beauty. Diana and Endymion is part of the last period of Solimena's works when he mainly concentrated on mythological subjects. He developed this interest in mythological stories while inspired by the Arcadian movement embracing classical culture. The painting is in the collection of the National Museums Liverpool.Painting: Francesco Solimena
Flowers of the plant Lantana camara with a crab spider waiting in ambush for prey. Part of the family Verbenaceae, L. camara is native to South and Central America and is now found across the world. It is often planted indoors or in a conservatory but can also be used in a garden if it has sufficient shelter. In some areas it has become an invasive species, affecting agricultural areas as a result of its toxicity to livestock and an ability to form dense thickets.Photograph: Joaquim Alves Gaspar
Liguus virgineus, also known as the candy cane snail, is a species of snail in the family Orthalicidae. It is native to the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, in the nations of Haiti and the Dominican Republic. There have also been at least three reports of living specimens being found in the Florida Keys of the United States. The snail lives on trees and feeds on moss, fungi and microscopic algae covering the bark.Photograph: H. Zell
The Stolen Kiss is a painting by French painter Jean-Honoré Fragonard created in the late 1780s. Painted in a style characteristic of the French Rococo period, it depicts a passionate kiss between two lovers. The composition is diagonal, made up by an axis composed through her leaning figure, the shawl and the balcony door opening from the outside, ending with the table the shawl is draped over. The painting is hosted in the collection of the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg.Painting: Jean-Honoré Fragonard
Papilio machaon, also known as the Old World swallowtail, is a butterfly of the family Papilionidae. It is present throughout the entire Palearctic region, ranging from western Europe and Russia to China and Japan, including the Himalayas and Taiwan, across into Alaska, Canada, and the United States, and as far south as Saudi Arabia and Oman. The adult butterfly typically has yellow wings with black vein markings, and a wingspan of 65–86 millimetres (2.6–3.4 in). The hindwing has a pair of protruding tails, similar to that of a swallow, and just below each tail is one red and six blue eyespots. In the caterpillar stage, P. machaon has a length of 45 millimetres (1.8 in) and resembles a bird dropping, giving it camouflage.Photograph: Zeynel Cebeci
Albert Reiss (22 February 1870 – 19 June 1940) was a German operatic tenor who had a prolific career in Europe and the United States during the first third of the twentieth century. He spent much of his career performing at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City where he sang in more than 1,000 performances, including several premieres, between 1901 and 1919. Excelling in the tenor buffo repertoire, Reiss was particularly associated with the roles of David in Richard Wagner's Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg and Mime in Der Ring des Nibelungen, two roles he sang in numerous houses internationally.Photograph: Bain News Service
Lancashire is a county in the north west of England. Founded in 1182, Lancashire emerged as a major commercial and industrial region during the Industrial Revolution. Liverpool and Manchester grew into its largest cities, with economies built around the docks and the cotton mills respectively. The county's borders were redrawn significantly in 1974, as the urban regions around Liverpool and Manchester were removed to form the counties of Merseyside and Greater Manchester and the northern part became part of Cumbria.
This picture, titled The Countie Pallatine of Lancaster Described and Divided into Hundreds, 1610, is a map of Lancashire engraved in around 1627 by John Speed. It features a street plan of the county town, Lancaster, and side panels containing portraits of kings from the House of Lancaster and the House of York.Engraving: John Speed; restoration: Adam Cuerden
An original Xbox One home video game console with a controller and a Kinect motion-sensing input device. XBox One is a line of eighth generation consoles developed by Microsoft. It was released in 2013 as the third console in the Xbox family and successor to the Xbox 360. The name of the consoles reflects Microsoft's marketing of the device as an all-in-one entertainment system. The Xbox One line competes against consoles such as Sony's PlayStation 4 and Nintendo's Wii U and Switch.Photograph: Evan Amos
The North America Nebula (NGC 7000 or Caldwell 20) is an emission nebula in the constellation Cygnus. The remarkable shape of the nebula resembles that of the continent of North America, complete with a prominent Gulf of Mexico. The portion of the nebula shown, resembling Mexico and Central America, is known as the Cygnus Wall.Photograph: Ken Crawford
The Maroon Bells are a pair of peaks in the Elk Mountains of Colorado, United States, close to the town of Aspen. The two peaks are separated by around 500 meters (one-third of a mile). Maroon Peak is the higher of the two, with an altitude of 14,163 feet (4317.0 m), and North Maroon Peak rises to 14,019 feet (4273.0 m), making them both fourteeners. The Maroon Bells are a popular tourist destination for day and overnight visitors, with around 300,000 visitors every season.Photograph: Rhododendrites