Current Events


Leonardo Painting Auction Prediction: $100 Million
October 15, 2017
A painting by the creator of the Mona Lisa could fetch $100 million at auction. Leonardo da Vinci's Salvator Mundi was painted about the same time as the Mona Lisa, art historians believe, but had private owners for centuries before being rediscovered in 1900. Officials said that the price paid for the painting in a 1958 Christie's auction was $60. The painting was identified as Leonardo's work only in 2011. It is the only known Leonardo painting still in private hands.

Great Pacific Garbage Patch Tapped for Statehood
October 7, 2017
A drive to declare the Great Pacific Garbage Patch an official nation is gaining momentum, with more than 130,000 people already applying for citizenship. The environmental charity Plastic Oceans Foundation began a campaign to petition the United Nations to recognize a new country, Trash Isles, as a way to call attention to the ever-growing amount of plastic and other garbage in the northern pacific Ocean. The latest estimates say that Trash Isles would be the size of a large country.

Bronze Statue Arm Found in Antikythera Wreckage
October 7, 2017
The encrusted fingers of a recently rediscovered statue point to greater treasures yet to come, according to archaeologists working at the famed Antikythera wreck, off the coast of the Greek island of the same name. The ship, which sunk in 1 B.C., has revealed many treasures in its time, none perhaps more enticing and maddening than the Antikythera Mechanism, which many people think was a primitive form of computer. Initial discovery of the wreck occurred only in 1900. Since then, several expeditions have turned up notable finds, including a bronze statue called the Antikythera Youth, which now stands in Greece's National Archaeological Museum. Much more recently, a team of divers from Greece and Sweden have been exploring the site, at times employing an underwater metal detector built for the purposes, in a newly funded endeavor. Their latest find is an intact arm that would have been part of a bronze statue onboard the ship. The archaeologists think that as many as eight other bronze sculptures are yet to be found.

Saudi Women to Join World's Drivers
October 1, 2017
Women in Saudi Arabia have won the right to drive. Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz announced that women could begin achieving a driver's licence in June 2018. The population of Saudi Arabia, as of the 2016 counting, is 32 million. Nearly half of those are women. Women were granted the right to vote in 2015 and to run for seats on local councils. However, women are still prohibited from doing many other things. For example, they cannot, without the consent of a male "guardian (husband, son, or father), travel outside the country, open a bank account or a business, decide whom they marry, or undergo certain medical procedures. Activists said that they intended their next target to be the laws the so-called "guardianship laws."

Evidence Bolsters Submerged Continent Claim
October 1, 2017
Evidence suggests that Earth could indeed have eight continents, one of which is on the seafloor. Earlier this year, scientists suggested the presence of a large underwater mass known as Zealandia, which sunk beneath the waves tens of millions of years ago but was, when it was at sea level, very large indeed. A nine-week voyage to the seafloor off New Zealand and Australia revealed evidence of land-based fossils on the submerged landmass, which is now more than 3,200 feet below the surface. As well, the expedition found that Zealandia's crust was not as deep as the surrounding oceanic crust, confirming the theory that the land was once much higher up. Working aboard a ship called the JOIDES Resolution, the scientists drilled more than 8,000 feet below the surface, at six sites at various points along the Zealandia landmass. What they discovered included remains of pollen from land plants and remains of organisms whose home is in warm shallow seas.

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Social Studies for Kids
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David White