Historical Events, Birthdays And Quotations

Greek Art

This Day in History


Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

The Battle of Legnano (1176)

Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

In 1160, Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa was excommunicated for his support of a series of antipopes against Pope Alexander III. In 1167, the communes of Lombardy in northern Italy formed an alliance to resist Frederick. The Lombard League soundly defeated Frederick's forces in the Battle of Legnano, after which Frederick reconciled with the pope and made peace with the Lombard cities. Why, if he survived, did Frederick's wife go into mourning for her husband following the battle? Discuss

The Last Supper Back on Display after Two-Decade Restoration (1999)

Tue, 28 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

By the 1970s, Leonardo da Vinci's 15th-century mural masterpiece, The Last Supper, was badly deteriorated. Italian officials then undertook a major restoration project to permanently stabilize the painting and reverse the damage. The painting's original form was determined using original sketches and scientific tests, including infrared reflectoscopy and microscopic core-samples. The restoration took 21 years, and the painting was put back on display in 1999. Where is it located?

Le Paradis Massacre (1940)

Mon, 27 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

The Le Paradis massacre was a WWII war crime committed by German soldiers under the command of officer Fritz Knöchlein. After becoming isolated from their regiment and running out of ammunition during the Battle of France, a group of British soldiers surrendered to German troops. They were then led across the road, lined up against a wall, and shot. Ninety-seven British troops died. Two survived and hid, but they were captured several days later. What happened to Knöchlein after the war?

Word Trivia


Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT


Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

conjecture - First meant "the interpretation of omens or signs" or "divination," and it literally means "to throw together," that is, to produce a theory by putting together a number of facts. More...

diacritic - From Greek diakrinein, "distinguish from," it denotes marks or signs that distinguish different values or sounds (pronunciations) of a letter. More...

semiopathy - A tendency to read humorously inappropriate meanings into signs. More...

sigla - The words for signs and abbreviations representing words. More...


Tue, 28 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

rareripe - Originally simply a fruit or vegetable that ripened early. More...

fruit, vegetable - Fruit is the name given to those plants that have an ovary used for food; vegetable is the name given to a large category of herbaceous plants with parts used for food. More...

sauerbraten, sauerkraut - In German, sauerbraten is literally "sour roast meat," and sauerkraut is "sour cabbage or vegetable." More...

sweet potato, yam - The sweet potatoes and yams sold in most stores are the same vegetable—sweet potatoes are inside every mislabeled yam can; true yams are not sold anywhere except a handful of specialty grocers. More...


Mon, 27 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

light year - Not a length of time but a distance, the distance a pulse of light travels in one year (about 5.88 trillion miles). More...

pea - Comes from Greek pison, "pulse, pease." More...

asphyxia - Its original meaning was stoppage of the pulse. More...

ictus - The beat of the pulse, based on the Latin word for "stroke." More...

Today's Birthdays


Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874)

Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

A British man of letters, Chesterton was a journalist, scholar, novelist, short-story writer, and poet. He wrote essays on Christianity and works of social and literary criticism on subjects such as Charles Dickens. His fiction includes the popular allegorical novel The Man Who Was Thursday, and his most successful creation, the series of detective novels featuring the priest-sleuth Father Brown. Chesterton was also known for collaborating with what author? Discuss

Thomas Moore (1779)

Tue, 28 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

Moore was an Irish poet who achieved prominence in his day not only for his poetry but also for his love of Ireland and personal charm. He is remembered today for Irish Melodies, a group of lyrics published between 1808 and 1834 and set to music by Sir John Stevenson and others. Moore was friends with Percy Bysshe Shelley and Lord Byron, and his biography of Byron is among his best prose works. Byron left Moore his memoirs, but Moore later destroyed them. Who persuaded him to do it?

James Butler "Wild Bill" Hickok (1837)

Mon, 27 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

Hickok was an American frontier marshal, legendary marksman, and gambler. In 1861, while working as a stagecoach driver, he shot and killed outlaw Dave McCanles, earning a reputation as a gunfighter. After serving as a Union spy during the Civil War, he was appointed a US marshal and tamed two Kansas towns. He was shot dead by a drunken stranger while playing poker at a saloon in the town of Deadwood. At the time, he was holding what combination of cards, now known as "dead man's hand"?

Article of the Day


Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

Prehistoric Music

Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

Music existed long before human cultures were literate or had developed a written system of record-keeping, perhaps originating as an attempt to echo the sounds and rhythms of nature. These sounds may have been used to lure prey while hunting or in recreational or shamanistic rituals. The oldest known bone flute is about 50,000 years old, but experts believe that humans may have used what to create a form of music that predates such instruments? Discuss

The Art of Eating Fire

Tue, 28 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

Fire-eaters are entertainers who extinguish flaming objects and transfer flames using their mouths and other body parts. The tradition of fire-eating was embedded in the spiritual performances of Hindu ascetics, and by the late 1880s, these daring acts had become a standard element in sideshow productions. Extinguishing tricks are the traditional hallmark of fire-eating, and performers often use their mouths to snuff out 1, 2, or even 3 flaming torches. What is the “secret” to fire-eating?

The 1970 Bhola Cyclone

Mon, 27 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

While the 1970 Bhola cyclone was not the strongest tropical cyclone to hit East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), it was the deadliest, claiming approximately half a million lives. It ranks among the most deadly natural disasters of modern times. The low-lying islands of the Ganges Delta were particularly susceptible to the storm surge's floodwaters, which reached 33 ft (10 m) when the cyclone made landfall. How did this tragic event help to bring about the establishment of Bangladesh?

Quotations of the Day


Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

Miguel de Cervantes

Wed, 29 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

He is wise who loveth well. Discuss

Willa Cather

Tue, 28 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

The history of every country begins in the heart of a man or a woman.

George Eliot

Mon, 27 May 2024 05:00:00 GMT

He was like a cock who thought the sun had risen to hear him crow.

Suggestions for Further Reading

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