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Today’s fact. Australia is home to approximately 170 kinds of snakes, including some of the world’s most venomous. The good news? Snake bites aren’t common and are rarely fatal. One study estimated that snake bites account for just two deaths per year in Australia.
Today’s fact. A solar eclipse helped end a six-year war in 585 BCE. When the sky suddenly darkened during a battle between the Lydians and the Medes in modern Turkey, soldiers took it as a sign to cease fighting.
Today’s fact. The dragon tree of the Canary Islands is famous for its thick, deep-red sap. Called dragon's blood, the resin might be responsible for the intense hue of the famous Stradivarius violins built in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Today’s fact. Stuck inside on a rainy day in 1816, writers Mary Shelley, Percy Shelley, Lord Byron, and John Polidori challenged each other to a scary story writing contest. Mary came up with the idea for Frankenstein and published it two years later at age 20.