9 weird and terrifying monsters from Japanese mythology

From animated umbrellas to polite-but-violent turtle-people, Japan's folklore contains some extremely creative monsters.

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  • Compared to Japan's menagerie of creatures, Western folklore can feel a little drab.
  • The collection of yōkai—supernatural beasts or spirits—has a staggering amount of variety.
  • Although there are many more creative folkloric creatures, here are nine that caught our attention.
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Culture & Religion

The horror and mystery behind 'the Black Paintings'

Towards the end of his life, Francisco Goya began painting terrifying scenes directly onto the walls of his house.

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  • The Black Paintings stand out in art history for their dark composition and themes.
  • The biggest mystery, though, is that Goya painted them directly onto the walls of his home and never told anybody about them.
  • With such little information, all we can do is speculate about the 14 horrifying Black Paintings.
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Culture & Religion

10 people who got famous from the grave

Really puts the whole "don't give up until you're dead" thing to shame.

Skull of a Skeleton with Burning Cigarette, by Van Gogh
  • It's been said that "You can be a king or a street sweeper, but everybody dances with the grim reaper."
  • These ten folks made huge advances in their field... but never lived long enough to see the fruits of their labors.
  • Can you think of someone alive today who might make the list in the future?
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Culture & Religion

Leonardo da Vinci could visually flip between dimensions, neuroscientist claims

A neuroscientist argues that Da Vicni shared a disorder with Picasso and Rembrandt.

Christopher Tyler
  • A neuroscientist at the City University of London proposes that Leonardo da Vinci may have had exotropia, allowing him to see the world with impaired depth perception.
  • If true, it means that Da Vinci would have been able to see the images he wanted to paint as they would have appeared on a flat surface.
  • The finding reminds us that sometimes looking at the world in a different way can have fantastic results.
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Mind & Brain

The ‘tacky’ Trump painting artist created similar work for Obama

Andy Thomas, a Missouri-based painter, painted an imaginary image of Trump and past Republican presidents that now hangs in the White House.

'The Republican Club' by Andy Thomas
  • The artist Andy Thomas, a self-taught painter living in Missouri, said he was surprised to learn Trump has hung the painting in the White House.
  • Thomas also created a similar painting depicting former President Barack Obama alongside past Democratic presidents.
  • Thomas said there's a hidden feminist message lying in both of the paintings.
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Culture & Religion