The agreeable eye

an eudæmonistarchives


Nature personified in 15th-century dress looks up  from her work hammering out a rabbit on anvil at a be-turbaned divinity hovering in a blue void; her expression mingles confusion, incredulity, and yet a complete lack of surprise

Ms. Ludwig XV 7 (83.MR.177), fol. 124v, ca. 1405.1

In a sterling example of the law of unintended consequences, the more officials attempted to limit discretion by heaping up specific details, the more they inadvertently encouraged innovation and interpretation.

—Lorraine Daston (Rules, p. 164, on sixteenth century sumptuary laws).

  1. This image appeared in Lorraine Daston’s delightful Rules, and it seemed worthwhile to scrounge up a color version and make a note of it for later. []


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