Thursday, February 21, 2008

21st of February

In reference to a calendar, it is possible on even a ferial work day, many commemorations may simultaneously co-exist. Which one should stand out, when each has significance. I have no academic, literary, clerical or journalistic career. Yet, I have interests there. To semi-quote from Cicero*: “not to know that the world existed before your birth, is to remain a child.” We as inheritors of civilisation should be aware and familiar with its legacy and deposit. To assert, in any way, that one is knowledgeable and his opinions have any value, without this basis of knowledge is derisively laughable. Here follows a partial list of items worth considering:
  • 362 - Athanasius returns to Alexandria
  • 1072 - Saint Peter Damian O.S.B., Doctor of the Church
  • 1440 - Prussian Confederation is formed
  • 1543 - Battle of Wayna Daga - Ethiopian and Portuguese troops defeat a Muslim army
  • 1595 - Saint Robert Southwell martyred by England, when Catholicism was treason, hanged, drawn and quartered at Tyburn
  • 1613 - Mikhail I is the unanimous choice of the Zemskij Sobor as the first Romanov Tsar
  • 1804 - Self-propelling steam locomotive -- Pen-y-Darren ironworks in Wales.
  • 1848 - Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels publish the Communist Manifesto
  • 1878 - The first telephone book is issued -- in New Haven, Connecticut
  • 1885 - Washington Monument is dedicated
  • 1916 - World War I: In France, the Battle of Verdun begins
  • 1918 - The last Carolina parakeet dies in captivity at the Cincinnati Zoo
  • 1937 - The League of Nations bans foreign national "volunteers" in the Spanish Civil War
  • 1952 - The British government abolishes Identity Cards in the UK to "set the people free" †
  • 1953 - Francis Crick and James D. Watson discover the structure of the DNA molecule
  • 1958 - The Peace symbol is designed and completed by Gerald Holtom
  • 1965 - Malcolm X is assassinated at the Audubon Ballroom in New York City by members of the Nation of Islam
  • 1972 - President Richard Nixon visits the People's Republic of China
  • 1973 - Over the Sinai Desert, Israeli fighter aircraft shoot down a Libyan Airlines jet killing 108
  • 1975 - Watergate scandal: Attorney General John N. Mitchell and White House aides H. R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman are sentenced
*Nescire autem quid ante quam natus sis acciderit, id est semper esse puerum. Quid enim est aetas hominis, nisi ea memoria rerum veterum cum superiorum aetate contexitur?
†Identity Cards Act (effective 30 March 2006) reverses this. Similarly in the US, Real ID Act -- May 11, 2005

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