Wikipedia:Picture of the day/December 2017

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A monthly archive of 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.

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December 1 – Fri

A single-pitch angklung from Bandung, Indonesia. The angklung is a musical instrument made of a varying number of bamboo tubes attached to a bamboo frame. The base of the frame is held in one hand, whilst the other hand shakes the instrument. This causes a repeating note to sound. The tubes are carved to have a resonant pitch when struck and are tuned to octaves. When single-pitch angklung such as this are used in angklung ensemble, each of the performers plays just one note or more, but together they produce complete melodies.Photograph: Chris Woodrich

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December 2 – Sat

Hollister Municipal Airport
Hollister Municipal Airport is a city-owned public-use airport located north of the central business district of Hollister, California. Covering an area of 343 acres (139 ha), in 2007 it saw an average of 200 aircraft operations a day.Photograph: Don Ramey Logan

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December 3 – Sun

Mansu Hill Grand Monument
Visitors bowing in front of statues of North Korean leaders Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il at the Mansu Hill Grand Monument in Pyongyang, North Korea. These statues, each 22 metres (72 ft) tall, are central to the complex, which also includes monuments titled Anti-Japanese Revolutionary Struggle and Socialist Revolution. The statue of Kim Il-sung was completed in 1972, in celebration of his 60th birthday. The statue of Kim Jong-il was added in 2011, following his death.Photograph: Bjørn Christian Tørrissen

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December 4 – Mon

Girl in White
Girl in White is an oil painting on canvas by Vincent van Gogh. Completed in Auvers-sur-Oise, France, in 1890, it depicts a peasant woman dressed in white. The work is held by the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.Painting: Vincent van Gogh

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December 5 – Tue

Urania's Mirror
An illustration by Sidney Hall for Urania's Mirror, a set of 32 astronomical star chart cards first published in November 1824. These cards, which were based on Alexander Jamieson's A Celestial Atlas, had holes punched allowing them to be held up to the light to see a depiction of the constellation's stars.

This card, Plate 28 in the series, depicts six constellations: the defunct Psalterium Georgii ('George's Harp'), Fluvius Eridanus ('the river'), Cetus (also known as 'the whale'), Officina Sculptoris ('sculptor'), Fornax Chemica ('the furnace'), and the defunct Machina Electrica ('the generator').Illustration: Sidney Hall; restoration: Adam Cuerden

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December 6 – Wed

Japanese yen
One of the first issue of coins for the Japanese yen. This coin was introduced in 1870 as part of the Meiji government's modernization program, replacing the Tokugawa coinage with silver 5-, 10-, 20- and 50-sen and 1-yen pieces, as well as gold 2-, 5-, 10- and 20-yen pieces. The 20 gold yen contained (on average) 33.33 grams of gold (0.9000 fine) and weighed 0.9645 ounces.Coin: Empire of Japan (image courtesy of the National Numismatic Collection, National Museum of American History)

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December 7 – Thu

Anthidium florentinum, a species of bee in the family Megachilidae. Bees are flying insects closely related to wasps and ants that are involved in pollination. There are nearly 20,000 known species of bees in seven recognized biological families. Bees are found on every continent except Antarctica, in every habitat on the planet that contains insect-pollinated flowering plants. Bees range in size from tiny stingless bee species whose workers are less than 2 millimetres (0.08 in) long, to Megachile pluto, whose females can attain a length of 39 millimetres (1.54 in).Photograph: Alvesgaspar

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December 8 – Fri

Martin Ryckaert
Martin Ryckaert (bap. 1587 – 1631) was a Flemish painter known for his small, usually imaginary landscapes in an Italianate style. Born to the Ryckaert family in Antwerp, he is believed to have studied under his father David Ryckaert I and later Tobias Verhaecht. In 1611, he was registered as a "painter with one arm" at the Guild of Saint Luke in Antwerp, where he was also active in the local chamber of rhetoric.

This painting of Ryckaert as a king was completed by Anthony van Dyck, reportedly a close friend, between 1627 and 1632. It now hangs at the Museo del Prado in Madrid, Spain.Painting: Anthony van Dyck

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December 9 – Sat

Vervain hummingbird
A vervain hummingbird (Mellisuga minima) photographed at Strawberry Hill in Jamaica. This species, which can also be found in the Dominican Republic and Haiti, is the second-smallest bird in the world after the bee hummingbird. It has an average length of 6 cm (2.4 in), including the bill, and weight of 2–2.4 g (0.071–0.085 oz).Photograph: Charles J. Sharp

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December 10 – Sun

Intentional camera movement
Intentional camera movement is a photography technique in which a camera is moved during the exposure for a creative or artistic effect. This causes the image points to move across the recording medium, producing an apparent streaking in the resulting image. The image shown here depicts a bluebell wood on Ashridge Estate in Hertfordshire, England; the intentional camera movement along the vertical plane has created an impressionistic effect.Photograph: Colin

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December 11 – Mon

Meripilus giganteus
Meripilus giganteus is a polypore fungus in the family Meripilaceae. It causes a white rot in various types of broadleaved trees, particularly beech. This bracket fungus is often found in large clumps at the base of trees, although fruiting bodies are sometimes found some distance from the trunk, parasitizing the roots. M. giganteus has a circumboreal distribution in the Northern Hemisphere, and is widely distributed in Europe. In the field, it is recognizable by the large, multi-capped fruiting body, as well as its pore surface that quickly darkens black when bruised or injured.Photograph: Michael Gäbler

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December 12 – Tue

Eurasian bullfinch
A male Eurasian bullfinch (Pyrrhula pyrrhula) photographed in Lancashire. This small passerine bird in the finch family was listed in 1758 by Carl Linnaeus in the 10th edition of his Systema Naturae. It is breeds across Europe and temperate Asia, where it is mainly resident, though some birds may migrate. Birds of this species feed mainly on seeds and the buds of fruit trees.Photograph: Francis Franklin

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December 13 – Wed

Daruma doll
A Daruma doll (Japanese: 達磨) is a hollow, round, traditional Japanese doll modeled after Bodhidharma, the founder of the Zen tradition of Buddhism. These dolls, though typically red and depicting a bearded man (Dharma), vary greatly in color and design depending on region and artist. Though considered an omocha, meaning toy, by some, Daruma has a design that is rich in symbolism and is regarded more as a talisman of good luck to the Japanese. They are seen as symbols of perseverance and good luck, making them a popular gift of encouragement.Photograph: Chris Woodrich

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December 14 – Thu

Witch doctor
A witch doctor of the Shona people in Zimbabwe, August 1989. Among the Shona, witch doctors, or n'anga, are known as healers who use a combination of herbs, medical/religious advice, and spiritual guidance to heal people. Traditionally, they are believed to have the religious power to tell fortunes, and to change, heal, bless or even kill people.Photograph: Hans Hillewaert

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December 15 – Fri

The Horse Fair
The Horse Fair is an oil painting on canvas completed by the French artist Rosa Bonheur between 1852 and 1853. Depicting dealers selling horses on the streets in Paris, the work was first exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1853. In 1887, having been held by several private collectors, the painting was donated by Cornelius Vanderbilt II to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It is one of Bonheur's most popular works, such that Queen Victoria requested a private viewing at Buckingham Palace during the painting's 1855–1857 tour of England.Painting: Rosa Bonheur

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December 16 – Sat

Gorce Mountains
A panoramic view of the Gorce Mountains, part of the Western Beskids that spread across southernmost Poland. The Gorce are characterized by numerous ridges reaching in all directions for up to 40 kilometres (25 mi) east–west with a series of higher elevations cut by deep river valleys. The range is dominated by about a dozen gentle peaks; the largest, Turbacz, rises to 1,310 metres (4,300 ft) above sea level.Photograph: Marcin Szala

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December 17 – Sun

Fremantle Prison
Fremantle Prison is a former Australian prison and World Heritage Site in Fremantle, Western Australia. The six-hectare (15-acre) site includes the prison cellblocks, gatehouse, perimeter walls, cottages, and tunnels. Constructed between 1851 and 1859 using convict labour, the prison was initially used for convicts transported from Britain, but was transferred to the colonial government in 1886 for use for locally-sentenced prisoners. Decades of prisoner discontent, culminating in a 1988 riot that saw guards taken hostage and a fire cause $1.8 million worth of damage, led to the prison being closed in 1991. Since then, Fremantle Prison has been conserved as a heritage and tourism site, and various restoration works have been undertaken.Photograph: Iwelam

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December 18 – Mon

A black plastic comb. Toothed devices used for styling, cleaning and managing hair and scalp, combs have been used since prehistoric times, and examples date back to 5,000 years. Combs vary in shape according to function, and can be made out of a number of materials. Most combs are plastic, metal, or wood; ivory combs were also once common.Photograph: Chris Woodrich

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December 19 – Tue

The Umbrellas
The Umbrellas is an oil painting on canvas by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, painted in two phases in the 1880s. It depicts a busy street scene in Paris, with most of the people depicted using umbrellas against the rain. The principal female figure to the left of the frame, modelled by Renoir's lover and frequent subject Suzanne Valadon, holds up her skirt against the mud and water on the road as she carries a hatbox, but has no hat, raincoat or umbrella. The painting is owned by the National Gallery in London as part of the Lane Bequest.Painting: Pierre-Auguste Renoir

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December 20 – Wed

Salak (Salacca zalacca) is the fruit of a species of palm tree native to Java and Sumatra in Indonesia. The fruits grow in clusters at the base of the palm, and are also known as snake fruit due to the reddish-brown scaly skin. Individual fruits are about the size and shape of a ripe fig, with a distinct tip that can be pinched to peel the fruit. Inside the fruit are three edible lobes, which resemble and have the consistency of peeled garlic cloves. The taste is usually sweet and acidic, with a strong astringent edge.Photograph: Chris Woodrich

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December 21 – Thu

Peter and Paul Fortress
Peter and Paul Fortress is the original citadel of St. Petersburg, Russia, founded by Czar Peter the Great in 1703 and built to Domenico Trezzini's designs from 1706 to 1740. Through the early 1920s, it was used as a prison and execution ground by the Bolshevik government. Since then, it has been adapted as the central and most important part of the State Museum of the History of St. Petersburg, which occupies most of the fortress building save the structure occupied by the Saint Petersburg Mint.Photograph: Andrew Shiva

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December 22 – Fri

Levi Woodbury
Levi Woodbury (1789–1851) was an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, a U.S. Senator, the 9th Governor of New Hampshire, and a cabinet member in three U.S. administrations. Over the course of his political career, he was affiliated with the Democratic Party of Andrew Jackson. At the 1848 Democratic National Convention, he received significant support for the presidential nomination, but lost to Lewis Cass.Engraving: Bureau of Engraving and Printing; restoration: Andrew Shiva

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December 23 – Sat

Cheomseongdae is an astronomical observatory in Gyeongju, South Korea. It is the oldest surviving astronomical observatory in Asia. It was constructed in the 7th century in the kingdom of Silla. Cheomseongdae was designated as South Korea's 31st national treasure in 1962. Modeled on Baekje's Jeomseongdae, which now exists only in historical records, Cheomseongdae influenced the construction of a Japanese observatory in 675, and Duke Zhou's observatory in China in 723.Photograph: Matt and Nayoung Wilson

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December 24 – Sun

Confocal microscope image
An osteosarcoma cell that was stained with phalloidin to visualise actin and imaged using a confocal microscope. The image was then deconvolved using a point spread function and colour coded to better show the position of the filaments.Photograph: Howard Vindin

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December 25 – Mon

Nativity (Christus)
Nativity is a devotional mid-1450s oil-on-wood and art panel painting by the Early Netherlandish painter Petrus Christus. It shows a nativity scene—the birth of the Christ Child as narrated in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke—with grisaille archways and trompe-l'œil sculptured reliefs. The panel, which may have once been part of a triptych, was acquired by Andrew Mellon in the 1930s. One of several hundred works from Mellon's personal collection donated to the National Gallery of Art in Washington, Nativity was restored in the early 1990s.Painting: Petrus Christus

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December 26 – Tue

Fatoumata Diawara
Fatoumata Diawara (b. 1982) is a Malian musician and actress. Born in Ivory Coast, she moved to France to pursue acting, eventually appearing in films such as La genèse and Sia, le rêve du python. She later took up the guitar and began composing her own material, writing songs that blend Wassoulou traditions of southern Mali with international influences. Diawara's debut album, Fatou (2011), was named 2011's best world music album by The Sunday Times. Since 2014, she has collaborated extensively with the Cuban jazz pianist Roberto Fonseca.Photograph: Thesupermat

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December 27 – Wed

Louis Pasteur
Louis Pasteur (1822–1895) was a French chemist and microbiologist renowned for his discoveries of the principles of vaccination, microbial fermentation, and pasteurization. He reduced mortality from puerperal fever, and created the first vaccines for rabies and anthrax. His medical discoveries provided direct support for the germ theory of disease and its application in clinical medicine. Together with Ferdinand Cohn and Robert Koch, he is regarded as one of the main founders of bacteriology.Painting: Albert Edelfelt

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December 28 – Thu

Yacare caiman
The yacare caiman (Caiman yacare) is a species of caiman found in central South America. About ten million individuals, such as this one, exist within the Brazilian pantanal, representing what may be the largest single crocodilian population on Earth. This small-to-medium sized species feeds mainly on fish (especially piranha), but also eats birds, reptiles, and small mammals.Photograph: Charles J. Sharp

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December 29 – Fri

An Old Man and his Grandson
An Old Man and his Grandson is a tempera painting by the Italian Renaissance artist Domenico Ghirlandaio completed c. 1490. It portrays an older man in a red robe, embracing a young child whose hand is on his chest. The deformity of the man's nose, evidence of rhinophyma, is at variance with the physiognomic theory of the era, as it is seen not as implying a defect of character but as inviting an appreciation of the man's virtuousness. Critics have noted an emotional undercurrent in the work; according to art historian Bernard Berenson, "There is no more human picture in the entire range of Quattrocento painting, whether in or out of Italy."Painting: Domenico Ghirlandaio

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December 30 – Sat

Wrocław Główny railway station
Wrocław Główny is the largest passenger station of the southwestern Polish city of Wrocław and in the Lower Silesian Voivodeship. Built in the mid-19th century near the city centre, it boasted a 200-metre (660 ft) long platform hall that has since been refurbished. Located at the junction of several important routes, Wrocław Główny serves nearly a dozen local lines.Photograph: Marcin Szala

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December 31 – Sun

USS Essex (CV-9)
USS Essex was an aircraft carrier and the lead ship of the Essex class built for the United States Navy during World War II. Commissioned in December 1942, Essex participated in several campaigns in the Pacific Theater of Operations, earning the Presidential Unit Citation and thirteen battle stars. Decommissioned shortly after the end of the war, she was modernized and recommissioned in the early 1950s as an attack carrier (CVA), and then eventually became an antisubmarine aircraft carrier (CVS). In her second career, she served mainly in the Atlantic, playing a role in the Cuban Missile Crisis. She also participated in the Korean War, earning four battle stars and the Navy Unit Commendation. She was decommissioned for the last time in 1969 and sold for scrap in 1975.Photograph: United States Navy

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Picture of the day archive

Today is Thursday, October 17, 2019; it is now 11:06 UTC