Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Humanities/2007 January 18

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January 18[edit]

Morgan Dollar Worth[edit]

Not sure if this actually fits under "humanities"...I've recently acquired a set of five Morgan Dollars. They're dated at 1883, 1886, 1896, 1899, and 1900, and they're all from the New Orleans mint. I know it's rather difficult to accurately tell without knowing their condition, but could you give me a general estimate of their value, or point me somewhere that I could find out? Thanks.--the ninth bright shiner talk 00:49, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Take a look at this coin pricing website. Marco polo 01:50, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
There are also a ton of these on ebay -- try searching for morgan dollar 1883-o. Look at the completed listings for the best estimate. BTW, those price guides often give retail prices, which tend to be much higher than what you would get for selling the same coins. Dave6 05:57, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Illegal immigrants for pay...[edit]

Ok, so I'm a student in high school and I was trying to figure something out for a project. I was curious as to whether or not there was a law against paying illegal immigrants. If anyone knows anything about this please help me out!! James 1/17/07

If you are asking about illegal immigration to the United States, see Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 and Illegal immigration to the United States. Of course the legal situation is different in other countries. Marco polo 01:45, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

In Australia a business may not hire a person without a tax file number TFN. Businesses that try to circumvent this may be fined heavily, and their administrator/owner may face serious charges. However, the black economy still exists, and may range from parents paying children to work at a home business, to prostitution and slavery. DDB 11:53, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Marquis St. Evremonde[edit]


I have to do a research project in world history and cannot find anything on Marquis St. Evremonde, except articles relating to A Tale of Two Cities. If you know anything about this topic please post it and make it easily accessible. Thank you.

I was always under the impression that the title was fictitious, appearing nowhere outwith the pages of Dickens. Clio the Muse 06:53, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
Me too. The only real person by that name (that would be suitable for a research project) is possibly Charles de Saint-Évremond, nut I don't believe he was a marquis (and he's certainly not the basis for the Dickens character). Perhaps you could clarify the question? Carom 07:17, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
The French Wikipedia has a good bibliography here. I've only ever heard him being refered to as Marquis de Saint-Évremond. Keria 01:05, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

seal and sealion?[edit]

Does the seal and the sealion belong to the same group or same category scientifically?if yes why?If no why?urgent..............

thkz— Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Yes, they are both sea-going mammals, and their taxonomic classification is the Pinnipediea Superfamily.

Sea lions, eared seals, and fur seals are part of family Otariidae, while true seals are part of the family Phocidae.

Everything can be in the same category, it just depends on how specific you want it. Taxonomy is a like a big tree with many branches. At the bottom, the trunk would be the kingdom Animalia, which includes all animals. I think what you want to know is where the branches of the sea lions and seals diverge, and that is at the family level of taxonomy. And finally, this reference desk is for humanities. As this is a scientific question, next time ask it at the science reference desk here, so you get better and faster answers. Thanks. --ĶĩřβȳŤįɱéØ 08:15, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

The term "seal" can also include sea lions (and walruses), since it can be used for the whole Pinnipedia grouping. -- Necrothesp 14:40, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Definition of "shadow company"[edit]

What is the definition of "shadow company" in a business context and political context. Can you give an example? Urgent67.186.1.159 17:45, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

It can refer to a company set up for devious purposes to conceal sensitive or illegal dealings. The company might have few or no employees but might be the owner in full of one or more other companies engaged in dealings that the owners wish to hide under the "shadow" cast by the shadow company. Sorry that I can't think of any examples offhand. Marco polo 18:54, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
You may want to take a look at Front_company and shadow company (the latter link more military than business, but still potentially relevant). (NOTE: i retitled the thread to be more specific). NoClutter 22:41, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Remember illegality is not a qualification of a shadow company. X [Mac Davis] (DESK|How's my driving?) 00:42, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

Asian American NAACP Legal Defense[edit]

Are there any Asian-American equivalents to the NAACP Legal Defense? Is there any organizations of Asian lawyers who represent cases on behalf of issues relating to the Asian community? Is there any legal Asian-American civil rights society? And off topic are they're any websites providing analysis of The General Principles of Civil Law of China? --Mao1949 17:54, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Search for stories based on themes[edit]

I wonder if there is a way to search for literary works (fiction and non-fiction) based on "themes" ... specifically, I am personally interested in the following themes, and I want to find stories from any genre that deal with them:

  • Died at the gate: a sojourner or warrior undertakes a long and difficult journey back to his homeland against tremendous odds, only to die upon arrival at the gate of his home city.
  • Hunting oneself: a protaganist is on the trail of a criminal/fugitive/runaway/whatever, only to discover at the end that the subject he is persuing actually *himself*.

I'd like to read stories that deal with these themes, any specific titles? Also I'd like to know if anyone has ever heard of a generic way of searching for literary works based on themes. NoClutter 22:36, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

Many public libraries in the United States have access to the NoveList database, which allows for (fairly primitive) thematic searching, but I don't know if you would be able to locate more complex themes like the two you mentioned. I'll have to think about the actual question, though...Carom 23:14, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
See Marathon#History for the first. Vranak
And Falling Angel(s)? by William Hjortsberg, filmed as Angel Heart for the second. Anchoress 00:08, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

Another classic example of the first topic is Moses leading the Israelites to the promised land in Exodus. As to the second topic, one possibility which relates to this, though not directly from literature, is the film Blade Runner. Grutness...wha? 01:08, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

What do you mean about not 'directly'? Is the theme extant in the movie but not the original story? I confess I never read it. Anchoress 01:21, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

Sophocles' play, Oedipus Rex is a perfect example of the second theme.

To the best of my recollection, the issue of whether or not Deckard is a replicant was completely absent in the story (although, I must confess that it's been some years since I read the story). The film is really only loosely based on the story - it introduces a number of new elements, and leaves out a few elements from the story. Carom 03:53, 19 January 2007 (UTC)
That was my point, plus the fact that the original question related to literature, not films. Don't worry - I wasn't trying to disparage the great PKD! Grutness...wha? 08:22, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

The classic example of the second is Oedipus Rex. JChap2007 04:06, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

The novel Cold Mountain (later adapted as a film) is a pretty good example of the first case. The Confessions of Mycroft Holmes: a paper chase, by Marcel Theroux (we don't seem to have an article on the book ok, I created an article, but it's not realy fleshed out yet) is a variant on your second theme - perhaps a little far removed from the detective-criminal idea, but nonetheless interesting. Carom 16:56, 19 January 2007 (UTC)