The history of punctuation: How punctuation marks became increasingly important

By Oula Mahfouz Punctuation marks – periods, commas, colons, question marks, semicolons (semicolons), brackets, exclamation marks, dashes and quotation marks – are all essential in written communication. They are used to organize texts and make it possible to express thoughts and feelings precisely. Conversely, punctuation marks help considerably to understand texts and to be able to read them out loud. Without punctuation, many sentences are ambiguous and the internet is full of example sentences that can only be understood if a comma is inserted. The history of punctuation spans many centuries and is closely linked to the respective language and… Read More

An ancient coin as a source for the history of Gaza City

By Stefan Krmnicek   In our series on ancient coins, an ancient coinage from Gaza City in the coin collection of the Institute of Classical Archaeology at the University of Tübingen is presented in more detail today. Gaza City was one of the most important port cities in the region in antiquity and was conveniently located as the end point of the trade routes for the incense trade from the interior of the Arabian Peninsula. The importance of the city is also underlined by the famous mosaic in the Church of St George in Madaba (Jordan), the oldest surviving cartographic… Read More

Minimum wage rises to 12.41 euros in 2024

The minimum wage will rise by 41 cents to 12.41 euros on 1 January 2024. This was decided by the Federal Cabinet. It will be raised by a further 41 cents to 12.82 on 1 January 2025. In doing so, the federal government is implementing the decision of the Minimum Wage Commission. The statutory minimum wage is the absolute wage floor. It has applied to all employees since 2015, with a few exceptions. However, there are special minimum wages in a large number of sectors. For example, temporary workers have been paid at least 13 euros per hour since April… Read More

Natural disasters sometimes lead to archaeological discoveries

By Youssef Kanjou Archaeological monuments are threatened by natural disasters, floods, fires, earthquakes – often as a result of climate change. On the other hand, natural disasters have particularly preserved historical sites, making them ideal witnesses of the past for archaeologists. For example, volcanic eruptions on Santorini and Mount Vesuvius have preserved the important settlements of Old Thera and Pompeii for posterity. What is less well known is that natural disasters have also led to the discovery of particularly interesting archaeological sites. Currently, disasters in Turkey and Libya, for example, have helped to uncover previously unknown archaeological remains. In February… Read More

Import and export when traveling

A passenger did not eat her apple on a flight from Germany to Indonesia. On arrival, inspectors took the fruit away from her. She didn’t know why. The reason: import and export regulations apply when traveling, which can vary from country to country. These regulations govern which items you can and cannot take with you. It is important to find out about the specific rules of your destination country before you travel to avoid unpleasant surprises. Frequently regulated goods include food, plants, animals, alcohol and tobacco products. It is advisable to observe these regulations in order to avoid possible penalties… Read More

Holidays do not automatically expire

Shortly before the end of the year, many employees ask themselves: Do my remaining days of holiday actually expire if I do not take them by the end of December? In most cases, no. But the details are rather complicated. It is easiest if there is a clear regulation in the company. Often you can then carry over holiday days into the new year and have to take them by 31 March. The personnel department or the works council will know the exact rules. In principle, however, leave is no longer automatically forfeited. This has been decided by the European… Read More

Contact points for the medical emergency service

Many doctors’ surgeries only have limited opening hours. However, medical emergencies often occur at weekends, on public holidays or outside these hours. In life-threatening cases, the emergency number 112 should be dialed. However, many emergency rooms are overloaded. The medical and pediatric on-call service is available for acute cases of illness that are not life-threatening. It can be contacted throughout Germany day and night on 116117. The on-call service will provide information on how to proceed and refer you to a doctor in an emergency. There is a dental emergency service for acute dental complaints. An online emergency service search… Read More

New rules for children’s passports

The classic German children’s passport is being phased out. From 1 January, there will be a new electronic passport with a chip. This was announced by the Federal Ministry of the Interior in Berlin. However, children’s passports that have already been issued can still be used until they become invalid, it continues. However, the ministry points out that some countries already no longer accept extended children’s passports. In addition, some countries already require that the passport is valid for three to six months when entering the country. Information on whether the specific destination country recognises a children’s passport or an… Read More

Immigration: More opportunities for skilled workers

There is a shortage of well-trained people in many sectors in Germany. That is why there is a new law to allow skilled workers to immigrate. This is new from November 18: foreign skilled workers with vocational training or academic qualifications are entitled to a residence permit. They are no longer restricted to jobs related to their education (see link below). Immigration opportunities with the European Union (EU) Blue Card for non-EU foreigners have also been restructured (see the link below). The following changes will apply from November: The limits for the minimum salary will be lowered: for professions in… Read More

Zaha Hadid: Ingenious architect with oriental roots

By Sameer Ibrahim Zaha Hadid (1950–2016), an Iraqi architect with British revolutionized the world of architecture and has left a visible mark in many cities around the world. She grew up in Baghdad in a wealthy family. Her father, Muhammad Hadid, was a prominent politician and former finance minister of Iraq. Even as a child she redesigned her own children’s room, which was used by a carpenter as a model for many other children’s rooms in Baghdad. At the age of eleven she wanted to become an architect. Zaha Hadid is known for her futuristic and unmistakable style. In an… Read More

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