The Apple iPhone is 350 Years Old (?)

Apparently the iPhone was invented nearly 350 years ago, according to Apple boss Tim Cook’s interpretation of a painting. I must admit I don’t think my ancestors ever used one

Former European Commissioner Neelie Kroes recently took Cook to Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum. “Do you happen to know Tim, where and when the iPhone was invented?” Kroes asked Cook.


What do you think?


The Apple chief executive explained that in one painting from 1670 at the museum he thought he saw the subject holding an iPhone. The painting is “Man hands a letter to a woman in a hall” by Pieter de Hooch.


Recently I read the book “Our Daily Bread: German Village Life, 1500-1850 ” by Teva J Scheer. On the cover is a picture of a peasant-like couple plowing on a quaint farm. The man is examining a clod of dirt but it looks exactly like he is checking his messages on a smart phone. You can see the book cover at,204,203,200_.jpg


I think it is a hair brush and she is getting ready to brush the other lady’s hair.


Looks more like a razor blade window scraper. Maybe the Apple logo doesn’t show too well through the dirty Windows in the background, and the panes will soon be cleaned off…


Ha ha, Pam. I had to go look at my copy!


Is that a painting by Vermeer at the top of this blog?


Rebecca Prillaman May 27, 2016 at 9:39 pm

I believe that she is holding and reading a “hornbook” . “These handheld “books” shaped much like paddles were covered with a protective coating of translucent animal horn, and printed or inscribed with text such as the alphabet, numerals, the Lord’s Prayer, etc.. Dating from medieval times, originally devised as an educational tool for children….the coating on it was a protection from soiling. In time, a handbook came to mean an instructional tablet or primer of any kind.”


The title of the painting tells us all we need to know, as explained by Dick:
“The painting is “Man hands a letter to a woman in a hall” by Pieter de Hooch.”

Even without that information, we can be assured the standing figure must absolutely be a man, due to his clothing. Women in the era depicted did not bare their legs except perhaps a small amount of ankle (or, in the case of laborers, perhaps a bit of lower calf, for practical purposes). Additionally, the shoulder-length hair is decidedly that of a man; women’s hair was kept long but pinned up, never hanging loose, and not cropped short like this.


It seems to me that the letter still sits in the lady’s lap, discarded while she reviewed the messages on, yes, her iPhone. Her cuckolded lover has taken her by surprise, and has snatched the phone from her, doing it so quickly that her eyes are still looking at the spot where the phone had been but a moment before. (Hey, if someone wants to start on Chapter Two, we could have something going here.)


I’m pretty sure he’s asking her if he can charge his phone.


johnreitzammer190122127 May 30, 2016 at 3:04 pm

I’m pretty sure he needs to charge it and he’s asked her where the 110 volt outlets are.


If you look out the window you can just make out the bumper of a DeLorean


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