It is difficult to accurately summarize the breadth of activities explored and mastered by the 17th century Jesuit scholar Athanasius Kircher. Inventor, composer, geographer, geologist, Egyptologist, historian, adventurer, philosopher, proprietor of one of the first public museums, physicist, mathematician, naturalist, astronomer, archaeologist, author of more than 40 published works: Kircher was one of the preeminent European intellectuals of the Seventeenth century. A contemporary of Newton, Boyle, Leibniz and Descartes, Kircher’s rightful place in the history of science has been shrouded by his attempt to forge a unified world view out of traditional Biblical historicism and the emerging secular scientific theory of knowledge. Athanasius Kircher was called “The last man who knew everything.”
The Museum of Jurassic Technology is a museum located at 9341 Venice Boulevard in the Palms district of Los Angeles, California. It was founded by David Hildebrand Wilson and Diana Drake Wilson (husband and wife)in 1988. The museum calls itself “an educational institution dedicated to the advancement of knowledge and the public appreciation of the Lower Jurassic”; the relevance of the term “Lower Jurassic” to the museum’s collections is left uncertain and unexplained. The museum’s collection includes a mixture of artistic, scientific, ethnographic, and historic, as well as some unclassifiable exhibits, and the diversity of its offerings evokes the cabinets of curiosities that were the 16th-century predecessors of modern natural history museums.