June 28th, 2010 mon
June 28th, 2010
Quiz: If a putana is a prostitute, what is puttanesca sauce?
Yesterday’s Quiz Answered below: A Moslem is required that once in his life he complete a Hajj. What is it?
History for 6/28/2010
Birthdays: King Henry VIII, Luigi Pirandello, Jean Jacques Rousseau, John Dillinger, Richard Rogers, Gilda Radner, Cartoonist George Booth, John Elway,CIA chief Leon Panetta, Mary Stuart Masterson, Kathy Bates is 61, John Cusack is 43, Mel Brooks is 83
Today is the Feast Day of Saint Plutarch and Saint Theodichidia.
622 A.D. The prophet Mohammed arrived in Medina, completing the Hajj.
1098- THE HOLY LANCE- Outside the city of Antioch Kerbogha the Saracen Emir of Aleppo was defeated by the warriors of the First Crusade inspired by the "Holy Lance". The Crusaders were surrounded and starving, when a monk from Marseilles named Peter Bartholomew began to have visions of St. Andrew. The Saint told him to instruct the Crusader warlords where to dig to find the Holy Lance that pierced the side of Christ. At first the monk was too frightened to go up to the barons, but plucked up his courage after Saint Andrew appeared to him in a second vision and boxed his ears for not following his orders. Boy, that’s one touchy saint!
They dug in a church as instructed and found nothing, then dug up every other church in town until they found a rusty spike that looked close enough. The army was so zazzed over this obvious sign of divine favor that they stormed from the gates of the city to give battle. The Crusader Bishop Alhdemar Du Puy bolstered their religious zeal by dressing up three mounted knights in pure white, having appear on a distant hillside and declared they were the Saints Jude, Andrew and Maurice come down to fight the unbelievers. Thus inspired, the Crusaders joyfully slaughtered all before them.
After the victory, Peter Bartholomew started to order the crusader barons around and get real uppity. The warlords told him that they were going to build a huge bonfire and that if he could walk through the inferno unharmed, then God must surely be acting through him. By the morning of the test the little monk had run off.
1119- Ager Saguinus "the field of Blood" Another crusader army doesn't do as well.
1519- THE MAN WHO MARRIED EUROPE- Charles V von Hapsburg was the grandson of Ferdinand & Isabella and so became King of Spain. At this time to be King of Spain meant he also ruled Portugal, the Netherlands and Belgium, Southern Italy, the Philippines and all of the Americas. This day he arranged to be elected Holy Roman Emperor of Germany, which meant he was now also ruler of all of Middle Europe from the Danish border to Sicily. Charles V became the most powerful man in Europe and France suddenly found itself surrounded. Both she and England faced a Hapsburg super-state, fueled by the limitless gold of the plundered Aztec and Inca empires. Charles was the first of his family to have the unique facial characteristic called the “Hapsburg Lip” – a large lower lip and protruding jaw.
1709- Battle of Poltava- Peter the Great of Russia defeats Charles XII of Sweden, the "Madman of the North". This battle wins Russia enough Baltic coastline needed for serious trade contact with Western Europe.
1751- The first volume of the ENCYCLOPAEDIA appeared in print. French philosophers Diderot, D’Alambert and Voltaire inspired by the ideas of English scholars Newton and Francis Bacon decided to put a summary of all human knowledge into one work. Encyclopedie is from the Greek “Knowledge all in the Round”. It took thirty years to write all the volumes, the last volume the index was published in 1780. But in those days the Encyclopedists were as much a political and anti-clerical movement as a fount of trivia. That these humanist scholars should attempt to define concepts like “God” The Soul” “Heaven and Hell,” without Church permission, was considered a declaration of philosophical war. The liberal thinking in the Encyclopaedia did a lot to advance the thinking of the Enlightenment and the American and French Revolutions.
1778- BATTLE OF MONMOUTH- The largest land battle of the American Revolution. George Washington had gotten word that the main British army had quit the rebel capitol of Philadelphia and was falling back to New York. He resolved to strike the British army while strung out on the march. It was the first battle where the Americans, their discipline stiffened by Baron Von Stueben’s drills, could slug it out face to face with the redcoats. The temperature was a stifling 90-100 % F and many men collapsed from heat exhaustion. This was where Molly Harris, called Molly Pitcher, took her husbands place manning a cannon. She laughed when an enemy cannonball flew between her legs taking away parts of her lower petticoats. The battle was a draw, but Washington had shown his army wasn’t a mob of raggedy-ass farmers, but a true modern army. Washington also silenced his last critics among the other generals. His second, General Charles Lee, was retreating from the field when Washington rode up and rallied his men. Lee was dismissed from the service, but not before Washington gave him a piece of his mind. An eyewitness said: “As a connoisseur of swearing I can attest that General Washington excelled at calling Lee every swear word one could think of. It was wonderful. He swore until the leaves shook from the trees!”
1868- Artist Claude Monet was broke and so depressed he jumped in the Seine River. After splashing around for a while, he decided its silly to drown himself so he swam to the riverbank and went for a drink. He outlived all the Impressionist painters of his generation, dying in 1926.
1914-WORLD WAR ONE STARTS- commenting on 40 years of European peace, Otto Von Bismarck had said:" The next European war can only happen if some damn fool thing happens in the Balkans." The Austro-Hungarian Empire was muscling the little kingdom of Serbia. Austria had already annexed Bosnia in 1909 and Serbia claimed it as theirs. The heir of the Austrian throne, Archduke Franz-Ferdinand went on a provocative tour of the Bosnian town of Sarajevo in an open limousine. One terrorist Nedjelko Cabrinovic, hurled a bomb at the car but the driver avoided it and took another route. The Archduke stopped at city hall where he and the mayor got into an argument. The mayor claimed:”This city is absolutely safe!”
The motorcade proceeded until it was stopped by traffic at an intersection. Then 18 year old Bosnian Serb Gavrilo Princeps stepped out of the crowd and fired his pistol. The first bullet hit the Archduchess Sophie Chotek who slumped lifeless over her husbands lap. Franz Ferdinand cried out: "Mama don't die! For the children!" when another bullet killed him. The bullet holed car and uniforms are still preserved in Vienna today. Austria and Germany and Turkey declared war on Serbia and Russia and France and England. Later the whole world joined in the lunacy, about 58 nations and 22 million deaths, the last declaration was Honduras declaring war on Germany two months before the armistice. Gavrilo Princeps died of tuberculosis in an insane asylum in 1918, unaware that he had set the world aflame.
1918- The German Kaiser told Lenin that Germany and Finland would not violate the terms of their Treay of Brest-Litovsk and so would not intervene in the Russian Civil War with a move against Petrograd. This enabled the Bolsheviks to move vital forces East to deal with Anglo-American supported White armies.
1919- The VERSAILLES TREATY is signed, finally ending the First World War. President Wilson had wanted a peace based on mutual respect and self-determination, but the winning powers led by Clemenceau and Lloyd George brushed aside his naive suggestions and wanted revenge. The German delegate was Count Brockdorff-Rantzau, a stiff monocled Prussian who’s autocratic demeanor annoyed Wilson and lost probably the only sympathetic ear there.“ Isn’t it always the same with those people?” Wilson complained. Economist John Maynard Keynes warned the penalties heaped upon postwar Germany by article #232- The War Guilt Clause- would create a grave economic crisis for her and the world, all but predicting the Great Depression to come. The terms imposed on the defeated Germany were so crushing and humiliating that they were a major factor in the German public turning to Adolf Hitler. World War Two has sometimes been called the "War to settle the Treaty of Versailles"
1928- Louis Armstrong & Earl Hines recorded West End Blues.
1944- German commanders in the West, Feldmarshalls Rommel and Von Rundstedt have a showdown with Hitler at Berschesgarten. They tell their Fuehrer bluntly that since the Allied breakout at Normandy the war in the West was already lost. Germany must make peace at any price before she is totally destroyed. Hitler said the Allies would never make peace with him so he knows they mean he must resign. Hitler rants about the new miracle weapons that would turn the tide, but Rommel asks him about what to do now. Hitler angrily throws them out. Von Rundstedt was forcibly retired and another officer promoted over Rommel’s head. Erwin Rommel decided to join in a generals plot to overthrow the Nazi leadership.
1950- General Douglas MacArthur flew out from Tokyo to see for himself the beginnings of the Korean War. He stood on a hilltop watching the terrible spectacle of the city of Seoul in flames. As bullets zipped around him and smoke and screams filled the air he calmly lectured the newspapermen about the similarities to Napoleon’s assault on the Austrian city of Ratisbon in 1809.
1969- THE STONEWALL UPRISING- New York City Police got a false tip about a stabbing in a mob-owned Stonewall gaybar in Greenwich Village. Others claim the cops were there to get their kickback, and when it wasn’t paid, they started arresting patrons. But for once the patrons didn’t go quietly but began to fight back. Poet Allen Ginsburg said it was marvelous that the first to openly battle for Gay rights were the Drag Queens. In the 60’s era of social revolution the fight caused three days of urban rioting and a new movement, the Gay Pride Movement, was born.
1971- Mobster Joe Columbo tells an Italian/American Unity Day rally in Columbus Circle, NY that the "Mafia" is a myth invented to insult people of Italian ancestry. A minute later hitmen sent by "Crazy Joe"Gallo, assassinated him.
1971- The Supreme Court overturned the conviction of prize fighter Mohammed Ali for draft evasion.
1997- Heavyweight prizefighter Mike Tyson was banned from boxing and fined $3 million for biting off a chunk of Evander Holyfield’s ear during a match.
2000- Little Cuban boy Elian Gonzales was taken by his father back home to Cuba after being in the US for 7 months. The 6 year olds estranged mother took the child and fled to Miami on a raft of refugees. She and her boyfriend drowned and the child was cared for by distant cousins and uncles. The Cuban boy’s fate became sensationalized by the US media and the vocally militant anti-Castro Cuban community of Miami. Fidel’s regime also had fun making publicity out of the traumatized boy’s plight. Finally Attorney General Janet Reno ordered the family home raided by US Marshals to unite the boy with his father. Back in Havanna Juan Miguel Gonzales said:”I never want anyone to stick a camera in my sons face again!”
Yesterday’s Quiz: A Moslem is required that once in his life he complete a Hajj. What is it?
Answer: One of the obligations of Islam, called the Fifth Pillar, is that you have to make the pilgrimage to Mecca. This is known as the Hajj.