They Saw the Future: Oracles, Psychics, Scientists, Great Thinkers, and Pretty Good Guessers is written by Kathleen Krull. I picked up this book at our library because my son is always fascinated by the "unknown" and thought it would be interesting to him to read about the Oracles, Jules Verne and Leonardo da Vinci for example. He asked me to read it aloud and only then I realized that it was written by Kathleen Krull, same author that wrote the Giants of Science that I shared here.
In this book, twelve personalities are introduced who "saw the future", visionary people that were from all different walks of life. From the Oracle at Delphi, the Maya, to Marshall McLuhan and many more, the book has very interesting biographies. Similar to the Giants of Science series, I would recommend this one for ages 10 and up. My son is loving this one so far, and wants to learn more about Nostradamus!
Here is a short part from the Maya chapter, in particular about their amazing calendar:
"Invented by priests approximately 2,600 years ago, the Mayan calendar is considered by some scholars to be the most accurate ever devised. According to the Maya's highly sophisticated calculations, the world had a definite beginning: a date known as 4 Ahau 8 Cumku, or August 13, 3114 BC. The calendar was made up of at least two complex, interlocking cycles running at the same time. The first was a 365-day cyle, known as Tun, divided into eighteen months of twenty days each. The five days left over were considered extremely unlucky, requiring many sacrificial rituals. The second cycle, known as Tzolkin, was made up of thirteen months of twenty days apiece. Every single day had its own omens, prophecies, and associations - good, bad, and neutral. Exactly how the Maya determined these details is not known."
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