I’ve seen this first one (from USA Today this time) a couple of times now:
Alexander the Great is also said to have had one blue and one brown eye.
I’ve never managed to find any more details on that one …
This second one — from something called Dream Dogs — strikes me as suspicious:
The Maltese has been depicted on ancient Roman and Greek works of art that dates back to 500 BC. The Roman governor Publius is said to have had a Maltese by the name of Issa and even had a portrait of her painted. Much poetry was written of Publius’ Issa.
Okay … we do know of Issa, of course, from Martial’s epigram (1.109), reproduced here via the Latin Library:
Issa est passere nequior Catulli,
Issa est purior osculo columbae,
Issa est blandior omnibus puellis,
Issa est carior Indicis lapillis,
Issa est deliciae catella Publi. 5
Hanc tu, si queritur, loqui putabis;
sentit tristitiamque gaudiumque.
Collo nixa cubat capitque somnos,
ut suspiria nulla sentiantur;
et desiderio coacta uentris 10
gutta pallia non fefellit ulla,
sed blando pede suscitat toroque
deponi monet et rogat leuari.
Castae tantus inest pudor catellae,
ignorat Venerem; nec inuenimus 15
dignum tam tenera uirum puella.
Hanc ne lux rapiat suprema totam,
picta Publius exprimit tabella,
in qua tam similem uidebis Issam,
ut sit tam similis sibi nec ipsa. 20
Issam denique pone cum tabella:
aut utramque putabis esse ueram,
aut utramque putabis esse pictam.
… but I don’t see any evidence that we’re dealing with something identifiable as a maltese. Can anyone help on the portrait claims? (or the Alexander eye colour claims?)