The Basics of Iridescence

‘the bare bones of that fleeting / soap-bubble sheen’ /

“The brilliant iridescent colors of hummingbirds are ... structural colors, not pigment, which means they are reflected by microscopic structural features of the feather surface ... composed of layers of tiny air bubbles.”

—Ornithologist David Sibley, “The Basics of Iridescence in Hummingbirds

The basics of iridescence: the bare bones of that fleeting soap-bubble sheen, a pocket of breath caught in stained-glass evanescence— it ...

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Also in this Issue

Issue 32 / October 1, 2015
  1. Editor’s Note

    Issue 32: Sloths’ splendid slowness, Lilias Trotter’s gambit, and a cross-eyed view of God. /

  2. Who Are You Calling a Deadly Sin?

    The sloth’s slowness is its virtue. /

  3. ‘I Cannot Give Myself to Painting’

    Why one of the greatest Victorian artists walked away. /

  4. The Cross Alone Is Our Theology

    What must God be like? Jesus’ death upsets every simple answer. /

  5. Wonder on the Web

    Issue 32: Links to amazing stuff. /

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