Category: FYI


FYI April 25, 2017

It’s Official! Happy National Crotilla Day.


On this day:

1916 – Easter Rising: The United Kingdom declares martial law in Ireland.
The Easter Rising (Irish: Éirí Amach na Cásca),[2] also known as the Easter Rebellion, was an armed insurrection in Ireland during Easter Week, April 1916. The Rising was launched by Irish republicans to end British rule in Ireland and establish an independent Irish Republic while the United Kingdom was heavily engaged in the First World War. It was the most significant uprising in Ireland since the rebellion of 1798, and the first armed action of the Irish revolutionary period.

Organised by a seven-man Military Council of the Irish Republican Brotherhood,[3] the Rising began on Easter Monday, 24 April 1916, and lasted for six days. Members of the Irish Volunteers—led by schoolmaster and Irish language activist Patrick Pearse, joined by the smaller Irish Citizen Army of James Connolly and 200 women of Cumann na mBan—seized key locations in Dublin and proclaimed an Irish Republic. The British Army brought in thousands of reinforcements as well as artillery and a gunboat. There was fierce street fighting on the routes into the city centre, where the rebels put up stiff resistance, slowing the British advance and inflicting heavy casualties. Elsewhere in Dublin, the fighting mainly consisted of sniping and long-range gun battles. The main rebel positions were gradually surrounded and bombarded with artillery. There were isolated actions in other parts of Ireland, with attacks on the Royal Irish Constabulary barracks at Ashbourne, County Meath, County Cork and in County Galway, and the seizure of the town of Enniscorthy, County Wexford. Germany had sent a shipment of arms to the rebels, but the British had intercepted it just before the Rising began. Volunteer leader Eoin MacNeill had then issued a countermand in a bid to halt the Rising, which greatly reduced the number of rebels who mobilised.

With much greater numbers and heavier weapons, the British Army suppressed the Rising. Pearse agreed to an unconditional surrender on Saturday 29 April, although sporadic fighting continued until Sunday, when word reached the other rebel positions. After the surrender the country remained under martial law. About 3,500 people were taken prisoner by the British, many of whom had played no part in the Rising, and 1,800 of them were sent to internment camps or prisons in Britain. Most of the leaders of the Rising were executed following courts-martial. The Rising brought physical force republicanism back to the forefront of Irish politics, which for nearly 50 years had been dominated by constitutional nationalism. It, and the British reaction to it, led to increased popular support for Irish independence. In December 1918, republicans, represented by the reconstituted Sinn Féin party, won a landslide victory in the general election to the British Parliament. They did not take their seats, but instead convened the First Dáil and declared the independence of the Irish Republic, which led to the War of Independence.

485 people were killed in the Easter Rising. About 54% were civilians, 30% were British military and police, and 16% were Irish rebels. More than 2,600 were wounded. Many of the civilians were killed as a result of the British using artillery and heavy machine guns, or mistaking civilians for rebels. Others were caught in the crossfire in a crowded city. The shelling and the fires it caused left parts of inner city Dublin in ruins.

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Born on this day:

1849 – Felix Klein, German mathematician and academic (d. 1925)
Christian Felix Klein (German: [klaɪn]; 25 April 1849 – 22 June 1925) was a German mathematician and mathematics educator, known for his work in group theory, complex analysis, non-Euclidean geometry, and on the connections between geometry and group theory. His 1872 Erlangen Program, classifying geometries by their underlying symmetry groups, was a highly influential synthesis of much of the mathematics of the day.

Felix Klein was born on 25 April 1849 in Düsseldorf,[1] to Prussian parents; his father, Caspar Klein (1809–1889), was a Prussian government official’s secretary stationed in the Rhine Province. Klein’s mother was Sophie Elise Klein (1819–1890, née Kayser).[2] He attended the Gymnasium in Düsseldorf, then studied mathematics and physics at the University of Bonn,[3] 1865–1866, intending to become a physicist. At that time, Julius Plücker held Bonn’s chair of mathematics and experimental physics, but by the time Klein became his assistant, in 1866, Plücker’s interest was geometry. Klein received his doctorate, supervised by Plücker, from the University of Bonn in 1868.

Plücker died in 1868, leaving his book on the foundations of line geometry incomplete. Klein was the obvious person to complete the second part of Plücker’s Neue Geometrie des Raumes, and thus became acquainted with Alfred Clebsch, who had moved to Göttingen in 1868. Klein visited Clebsch the following year, along with visits to Berlin and Paris. In July 1870, at the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War, he was in Paris and had to leave the country. For a short time, he served as a medical orderly in the Prussian army before being appointed lecturer at Göttingen in early 1871.

Erlangen appointed Klein professor in 1872, when he was only 23.[4] In this, he was strongly supported by Clebsch, who regarded him as likely to become the leading mathematician of his day. Klein did not build a school at Erlangen where there were few students, and so he was pleased to be offered a chair at Munich’s Technische Hochschule in 1875. There he and Alexander von Brill taught advanced courses to many excellent students, including, Adolf Hurwitz, Walther von Dyck, Karl Rohn, Carl Runge, Max Planck, Luigi Bianchi, and Gregorio Ricci-Curbastro.

In 1875 Klein married Anne Hegel, the granddaughter of the philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel.[5]

After five years at the Technische Hochschule, Klein was appointed to a chair of geometry at Leipzig. There his colleagues included Walther von Dyck, Rohn, Eduard Study and Friedrich Engel. Klein’s years at Leipzig, 1880 to 1886, fundamentally changed his life. In 1882, his health collapsed; in 1883–1884, he was plagued by depression. Nonetheless his research continued; his seminal work on hyperelliptic sigma functions dates from around this period, being published in 1886 and 1888.

Klein accepted a chair at the University of Göttingen in 1886. From then until his 1913 retirement, he sought to re-establish Göttingen as the world’s leading mathematics research center. Yet he never managed to transfer from Leipzig to Göttingen his own role as the leader of a school of geometry. At Göttingen, he taught a variety of courses, mainly on the interface between mathematics and physics, such as mechanics and potential theory.

The research center Klein established at Göttingen served as a model for the best such centers throughout the world. He introduced weekly discussion meetings, and created a mathematical reading room and library. In 1895, Klein hired David Hilbert away from Königsberg; this appointment proved fateful, because Hilbert continued Göttingen’s glory until his own retirement in 1932.

Under Klein’s editorship, Mathematische Annalen became one of the very best mathematics journals in the world. Founded by Clebsch, only under Klein’s management did it first rival then surpass Crelle’s Journal based out of the University of Berlin. Klein set up a small team of editors who met regularly, making democratic decisions. The journal specialized in complex analysis, algebraic geometry, and invariant theory (at least until Hilbert killed the subject). It also provided an important outlet for real analysis and the new group theory.

In 1893 in Chicago, Klein was a keynote speaker at the International Mathematical Congress held as part of the World’s Columbian Exposition.[6] Thanks in part to Klein’s efforts, Göttingen began admitting women in 1893. He supervised the first Ph.D. thesis in mathematics written at Göttingen by a woman; she was Grace Chisholm Young, an English student of Arthur Cayley’s, whom Klein admired. In 1897 Klein became foreign member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences.[7]

Around 1900, Klein began to take an interest in mathematical instruction in schools. In 1905, he played a decisive role in formulating a plan recommending that analytic geometry, the rudiments of differential and integral calculus, and the function concept be taught in secondary schools.[8][9] This recommendation was gradually implemented in many countries around the world. In 1908, Klein was elected president of the International Commission on Mathematical Instruction at the Rome International Congress of Mathematicians.[10] Under his guidance, the German branch of the Commission published many volumes on the teaching of mathematics at all levels in Germany.

The London Mathematical Society awarded Klein its De Morgan Medal in 1893. He was elected a member of the Royal Society in 1885, and was awarded its Copley Medal in 1912. He retired the following year due to ill health, but continued to teach mathematics at his home for some years more.

Klein bore the title of Geheimrat.

He died in Göttingen in 1925.


Klein’s dissertation, on line geometry and its applications to mechanics, classified second degree line complexes using Weierstrass’s theory of elementary divisors.

Klein’s first important mathematical discoveries were made in 1870. In collaboration with Sophus Lie, he discovered the fundamental properties of the asymptotic lines on the Kummer surface. They went on to investigate W-curves, curves invariant under a group of projective transformations. It was Lie who introduced Klein to the concept of group, which was to play a major role in his later work. Klein also learned about groups from Camille Jordan.[11]

Klein devised the bottle named after him, a one-sided closed surface which cannot be embedded in three-dimensional Euclidean space, but it may be immersed as a cylinder looped back through itself to join with its other end from the “inside”. It may be embedded in Euclidean space of dimensions 4 and higher.

In the 1890s, Klein turned to mathematical physics, a subject from which he had never strayed far, writing on the gyroscope with Arnold Sommerfeld.[12] In 1894 he launched the idea of an encyclopedia of mathematics including its applications, which became the Enzyklopädie der mathematischen Wissenschaften. This enterprise, which ran until 1935, provided an important standard reference of enduring value.[13]

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FYI April 24, 2017

April 24 is National Pigs-in-a-Blanket Day

On this day:


1704 – The first regular newspaper in British Colonial America, The Boston News-Letter, is published.
The Boston News-Letter, first published on April 24, 1704, is regarded as the first continuously published newspaper in British North America. It was heavily subsidized by the British government, with a limited circulation. All copies were approved by the governor.[1] The colonies’ first newspaper was Publick Occurrences Both Forreign and Domestick, which published its first and only issue on September 25, 1690. In 1718, the Weekly Jamaica Courant followed in Kingston. In 1726 the Boston Gazette began publishing with Bartholomew Green, Jr., as printer.

The News-Letter’s first editor was John Campbell, a bookseller and postmaster of Boston. Campbell had been actively writing and sending “news letters” of European occurrences to New England governors for a year or more and thought it would save trouble to print them for all. The News-Letter was originally issued weekly as a half sheet, single page printed on both sides, 8 inches (200 mm) x 12 inches (300 mm), dated “From Monday, April 17, to Monday, April 24, 1704.” The printer was Bartholomew Green.[2]

During its early years, the News-Letter was filled primarily with news from London journals describing English politics and the details of European wars. As the only newspaper in the colonies at the time, it also reported on the sensational death of Blackbeard the pirate in hand-to-hand combat in 1718.[3]

In 1707, John Allen took care of printing the paper.[4] In 1722 the editorship passed to Green, who focused more on domestic events. After his death in 1732, his son-in-law John Draper, also a printer, took the paper’s helm. He enlarged the paper to four pages and filled it with news from throughout the colonies. He conducted the paper until his death in 1762, at which time his son, Richard Draper, became editor. Richard died in 1774, and his widow, Margaret Green Draper, published the New-Letter for the rest of its existence.[2]

Richard Draper had been an ardent loyalist and firmly supported the mother country in the stormy times of the 1770s. His widow shared his feelings, and when the young man she installed as editor, Robert Boyle, showed sympathy with the Revolution, she replaced him with John Howe. Howe served as Mrs. Draper’s editor until the British evacuated Boston on March 17, 1776, taking John Howe and Margaret Draper with them. With the British withdrawal, the News-Letter ceased to exist. The British government gave Margaret Draper a life pension.[2]

Varying titles
The Boston news-letter. Apr. 24, 1704 – Dec. 29, 1726.
The Weekly news-letter. Jan. 5, 1727 – Oct. 29, 1730.
The Boston weekly news-letter. Nov. 5, 1730 – Aug. 25, 1757.
The Boston news-letter. Sept. 1, 1757 – Mar. 18, 1762.
The Boston news-letter, and New-England chronicle. Mar. 25, 1762 – Mar. 31, 1763.
The Massachusetts gazette. And Boston news-letter. Apr. 7, 1763 – May 19, 1768.
Boston weekly news-letter. May 26, 1768 – Sept. 21, 1769.
The Massachusetts gazette; and the Boston weekly news-letter. Sept. 28, 1769 – Feb. 29, 1776.[4]

Born on this day:

1879 – Susanna Bokoyni, Hungarian-American circus performer (d. 1984)
Susanna Bokoyni (April 24, 1879 – August 24, 1984), also known as “Princess Susanna,” was a Hungarian centenarian and circus performer who was listed in Guinness World Records as the longest-lived dwarf on record.[1]

Early life and career
Bokoyni was born in Hungary on April 24, 1879. Doctors told her family that she would not live past age seven. At age 16, she became a dancer in the Orpheum Theater in Budapest. She later toured with Rose’s Parisian Midget Follies and Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show where she performed a tight rope act.[2]

During her 67-year career she performed in Germany, France, Italy, Cuba, England, and The United States and learned to speak at least three languages.[citation needed]

Later life and death
This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (August 2011) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

In 1972, Bokoyni moved to Newton, New Jersey and settled at the Merriam House Retirement Home. On August 24, 1984, she died at Newton Memorial Hospital and is buried at Glenwood Cemetery in Vernon, New Jersey, aged 105.

1880 – Gideon Sundback, Swedish-American engineer and businessman, developed the zipper (d. 1954)

Gideon Sundbäck (April 24, 1880 – June 21, 1954) was a Swedish-American electrical engineer, who is most commonly associated with his work in the development of the zipper.[1]

Otto Fredrik Gideon Sundbäck was born on Sonarp farm in Ödestugu Parish, in Jönköping County, Småland, Sweden. He was the son of Jonas Otto Magnusson Sundbäck, a prosperous farmer, and his wife Kristina Karolina Klasdotter. After his studies in Sweden, Sundbäck moved to Germany, where he studied at the polytechnic school in Bingen am Rhein. In 1903, Sundbäck took his engineer exam. In 1905, he emigrated to the United States.[2][3][4]
In 1905, Gideon Sundbäck started to work at Westinghouse Electric and Manufacturing Company in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In 1906, Sundbäck was hired to work for the Universal Fastener Company of Hoboken, New Jersey. Subsequently in 1909,[5] Sundbäck was promoted to the position of head designer at Universal Fastener.

Sundbäck made several advances in the development of the zipper between 1906 and 1914, while working for companies that later evolved into Talon, Inc. He built upon the previous work of other engineers such as Elias Howe, Max Wolff, and Whitcomb L. Judson. [6]

He was responsible for improving the “Judson C-curity Fastener”. At that time the company’s product was still based on hooks and eyes. Sundbäck developed an improved version of the C-curity, called the “Plako”, but it too had a strong tendency to pull apart, and was not any more successful than the previous versions. Sundbäck finally solved the pulling-apart problem in 1913, with his invention of the first version not based on the hook-and-eye principle, the “Hookless Fastener No. 1”. He increased the number of fastening elements from four per inch to ten or eleven. His invention had two facing rows of teeth that pulled into a single piece by the slider, and increased the opening for the teeth guided by the slider.[7]

The patent for the “Separable Fastener” was issued in 1917. Gideon Sundbäck also created the manufacturing machine for the new device. The “S-L” or “scrapless” machine took a special Y-shaped wire and cut scoops from it, then punched the scoop dimple and nib, and clamped each scoop on a cloth tape to produce a continuous zipper chain. Within the first year of operation, Sundbäck’s machinery was producing a few hundred feet (around 100 meters) of fastener per day.

In 1914, Sundbäck developed a version based on interlocking teeth, the “Hookless No. 2”, which was the modern metal zipper in all its essentials. In this fastener each tooth is punched to have a dimple on its bottom and a nib or conical projection on its top. The nib atop one tooth engages in the matching dimple in the bottom of the tooth that follows it on the other side as the two strips of teeth are brought together through the two Y channels of the slider. The teeth are crimped tightly to a strong fabric cord that is the selvage edge of the cloth tape that attaches the zipper to the garment, with the teeth on one side offset by half a tooth’s height from those on the other side’s tape. They are held so tightly to the cord and tape that once meshed there is not enough play to let them pull apart. A tooth cannot rise up off the nib below it enough to break free, and its nib on top cannot drop out of the dimple in the tooth above it. U.S. Patent 1,219,881 for the “Separable Fastener” was issued in 1917.[8]

The name zipper was created in 1923 by B.F. Goodrich, who used the device on their new boots. Initially, boots and tobacco pouches were the primary use for zippers; it took another twenty years before they caught on in the fashion industry. About the time of World War II the zipper achieved wide acceptance for the flies of trousers and the plackets of skirts and dresses.[9]

Sundbäck also created the manufacturing machine for the new zipper. Lightning Fastener Company, one early manufacturer of the zipper, was based in St. Catharines, Ontario. Although Sundbäck frequently visited the Canadian factory as president of the company, he resided in Meadville, Pennsylvania and remained an American citizen. Sundbäck was awarded the Gold Medal of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences in 1951. Sundbäck died of a heart condition in 1954 and was interred at Greendale Cemetery in Meadville, Pennsylvania.
On June 5, 1909, Sundbäck married Elvira Aronson, daughter of the Swedish born plant manager Peter Aronsson, in Hoboken, New Jersey.[10]
In 2006, Sundbäck was honored by inclusion in the National Inventors Hall of Fame for his work on the development of the zipper.[9][11] On April 24, 2012, the 132nd anniversary of Sundbäck’s birth, Google changed the Google logo on its homepage to a Google Doodle of the zipper, which when opened revealed the results of a search for Gideon Sundback.[12]
1917 patent
Sundback’s U.S. Patent 1,219,881 (filed in 1914, issued in 1917):

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FYI April 23, 2017

April 23 is National Picnic Day




On this day:

1516 – The Bayerische Reinheitsgebot (regarding the ingredients of beer) is signed in Ingolstadt.
The Reinheitsgebot (German pronun­cia­tion: [ˈʁaɪnhaɪtsɡəboːt] ( listen), literally “purity order”), sometimes called the “German Beer Purity Law” in English, is the collective name for a series of regulations limiting the ingredients in beer in Germany and the states of the former Holy Roman Empire. The best-known version of the law was adopted in Bavaria in 1516, but similar regulations predate the Bavarian order, and modern regulations also significantly differ from the 1516 Bavarian version.

1516 Bavarian law
The most influential predecessor of the modern Reinheitsgebot was a law first adopted in the duchy of Munich in 1487. After Bavaria was reunited, the Munich law was adopted across the entirety of Bavaria on April 23, 1516.[1] As Germany unified, Bavaria pushed for adoption of this law on a national basis (see Broader adoption).

Ingredients permitted
According to the 1516 Bavarian law, the only ingredients that could be used in the production of beer were water, barley and hops.

Other regulations
The 1516 Bavarian law set the price of beer (depending on the time of year and type of beer), limited the profits made by innkeepers, and made confiscation the penalty for making impure beer.

The text of the 1516 Bavarian law is as follows:
We hereby proclaim and decree, by Authority of our Province, that henceforth in the Duchy of Bavaria, in the country as well as in the cities and marketplaces, the following rules apply to the sale of beer:

From Michaelmas to Georgi, the price for one Mass [Bavarian Liter 1,069] or one Kopf [bowl-shaped container for fluids, not quite one Mass], is not to exceed one Pfennig Munich value, and

From Georgi to Michaelmas, the Mass shall not be sold for more than two Pfennig of the same value, the Kopf not more than three Heller [Heller usually one-half Pfennig].

If this not be adhered to, the punishment stated below shall be administered.

Should any person brew, or otherwise have, other beer than March beer, it is not to be sold any higher than one Pfennig per Mass.

Furthermore, we wish to emphasize that in future in all cities, market-towns and in the country, the only ingredients used for the brewing of beer must be Barley, Hops and Water. Whosoever knowingly disregards or transgresses upon this ordinance, shall be punished by the Court authorities’ confiscating such barrels of beer, without fail.
Should, however, an innkeeper in the country, city or market-towns buy two or three pails of beer (containing 60 Mass) and sell it again to the common peasantry, he alone shall be permitted to charge one Heller more for the Mass or the Kopf, than mentioned above. Furthermore, should there arise a scarcity and subsequent price increase of the barley (also considering that the times of harvest differ, due to location), WE, the Bavarian Duchy, shall have the right to order curtailments for the good of all concerned.
— Bavarian Reinheitsgebot of 1516 (emphasis added), Eden, Karl J. (1993). “History of German Brewing”. Zymurgy. 16 (4).


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Born on this day:

1748 – Félix Vicq-d’Azyr, French physician and anatomist (d. 1794)
Félix Vicq d’Azyr (French: [feliks vik daziʁ]; 23 April 1748 – 20 June 1794) was a French physician and anatomist, the originator of comparative anatomy and discoverer of the theory of homology in biology.

Vicq d’Azyr was born in Valognes, Normandy, the son of a physician. He graduated in medicine at the University of Paris and became a renowned and brilliant animal and human anatomist and physician.

From 1773 Vicq d’Azyr taught a celebrated course of anatomy at the Jardin du Roi, currently the Museum of Natural History, in Paris. In 1774 he was elected a member of the Académie des Sciences with the support of his friend Condorcet, the Perpetual Secretary. In this latter capacity, he was in charge of writing the eulogies of his colleagues. This he accomplished with great talent, thus winning a lifetime membership to the Académie française in 1788. On the outbreak of an epidemic in Guyenne he was charged with writing a report, of making propositions and with their execution. Pursuing an early perception of the responsibility of the State on health affairs, Anne-Robert-Jacques Turgot proposed the creation of the Société Royale de Médecine. In 1775, Vicq d’Azyr was made Perpetual Secretary. Under his leadership, the Société compiled over 16 years a great mass of facts and information about diseases, physicians, economics and food resources.

He was the last physician of Queen Marie-Antoinette, whom he tried to protect. Additionally he was a professor of veterinary medicine at the School of Alfort, as well as Superintendent of epidemics.

As an anatomist he was one of the first to use coronal sections of the brain and to use alcohol to aid dissection. He described the locus coeruleus,[1] the locus niger (substantia nigra) in the brain, in 1786, and the band of Vicq d’Azyr, a fiber system between the external granular layer and the external pyramidal layer of the cerebral cortex, as well as the Mamillo-thalamic tract, which bears his name. His systematic studies of the cerebral convolutions became a classic and Vicq d’Azyr was one of the first neuroanatomists to name the gyri. He studied the deep gray nuclei of the cerebrum and the basal ganglia. He participated in the Second Encyclopedia.

Vicq d’Azyr died of tuberculosis[2] on June 20, 1794 during The Terror. He had that day attended Robespierre’s Festival of the Supreme Being.

A collection of some of his papers is held at the National Library of Medicine in Bethesda, Maryland.[3]




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FYI April 22, 2017






On this day:

1529 – Treaty of Zaragoza divides the eastern hemisphere between Spain and Portugal along a line 297.5 leagues or 17° east of the Moluccas.
The Treaty of Zaragoza, or Treaty of Saragossa, also referred to as the Capitulation of Zaragoza, was a peace treaty between the Spanish Crown and Portugal, signed on 22 April 1529 by King John III and the Emperor Charles V, in the Aragonese city of Zaragoza. The treaty defined the areas of Castilian (Spanish) and Portuguese influence in Asia, in order to resolve the “Moluccas issue”, which had arisen because both kingdoms claimed the Moluccas islands for themselves, asserting that it was within their area of influence established by the Treaty of Tordesillas in 1494. The conflict began in 1520, when expeditions of both kingdoms reached the Pacific Ocean, because no agreed meridian of longitude had been established in the orient.

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Born on this day:

1812 – Solomon Caesar Malan, Swiss-English orientalist (d. 1894)
Solomon Caesar Malan (April 22, 1812 – November 25, 1894) was a British divine and orientalist.

By birth a Swiss descended from an exiled French family, Malan was born in Geneva, where his father, Dr Henri Abraham César Malan (1787–1864) enjoyed a great reputation as a Protestant divine.

From his earliest youth he manifested a remarkable faculty for the study of languages, and when he came to Scotland as tutor in the marquis of Tweeddale’s family at the age of 18 he had already made progress in Sanskrit, Arabic and Hebrew. In 1833 he matriculated at St Edmund Hall, Oxford; and English being almost an unknown tongue to him, he petitioned the examiners to allow him to do his paper work of the examination in French, German, Spanish, Italian, Latin or Greek, rather than in English.

But his request was not granted. After gaining the Boden and the Pusey and Ellerton scholarships, he graduated 2nd class in Literae humaniores in 1837. He then proceeded to India as classical lecturer at Bishop’s College, Calcutta, to which post he added the duties of secretary to the Bengal branch of the Royal Asiatic Society; and although compelled by illness to return in 1840, laid the foundation of a knowledge of Tibetan and Chinese.

After serving various curacies, he was presented in 1845 to the living of Broadwindsor, Dorset, which he held until 1886 During this entire period he continued to augment his linguistic knowledge; he was able to preach in Georgian, on a visit which he paid to Nineveh in 1872. His translations from the Armenian, Georgian and Coptic were numerous. He applied his Chinese learning to the determination of important points connected with Chinese religion, and published a vast number of parallel passages illustrative of the Book of Proverbs.

In 1880 the University of Edinburgh conferred upon him the honorary degree of D.D.

No modern scholar, perhaps, has so nearly approached the linguistic omniscience of Mezzofanti; but, like Mezzofanti, Dr Malan was more of a linguist than a critic. He made himself conspicuous by the vehemence of his opposition to Westcott and Hort’s text of the New Testament, and to the transliteration of Oriental languages, on neither of which points did he have the general support of scholars. His extensive and valuable library, some special collections excepted, was presented by him in his lifetime to the Indian Institute at Oxford. He died at Bournemouth. His life has been written by his son.

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FYI April 21, 2017










On this day:

900 – The Laguna Copperplate Inscription (the earliest known written document found in what is now the Philippines): the Commander-in-Chief of the Kingdom of Tondo, as represented by the Honourable Jayadewa, Lord Minister of Pailah, pardons from all debt the Honourable Namwaran and his relations.
The Laguna Copperplate Inscription (Filipino: Inskripsyon sa Binatbat na Tanso ng Laguna, Malay: Prasasti keping tembaga Laguna) is the earliest known written document found in the Philippines. The plate was found in 1989 by a labourer near the mouth of the Lumbang River in Barangay Wawa, Lumban, Laguna. The inscription on the plate, made in 900 CE, was first deciphered by Dutch anthropologist Antoon Postma.[1][2]

The discovery of the plate is cited as evidence of cultural links between the Classical Kingdom of Tondo and the various contemporary Asian civilizations, most notably the Javanese Medang Kingdom, the Srivijaya Empire, and the Middle kingdoms of India.

The inscription is on a thin copper plate measuring less than 20 × 30 cm (8 × 12 inches) in size with words directly embossed onto the plate. It differs in manufacture from Javanese scrolls of the period, which had the words inscribed onto a heated, softened scroll of metal.[3]

Inscribed on it is year 822 of the Saka Era, the month of Waisaka, and the fourth day of the waning moon, which corresponds to Monday, April 21, 900 CE in the Proleptic Gregorian calendar.[4] The writing system used is the Kawi Script, while the language is a variety of Old Malay, and contains numerous loanwords from Sanskrit and a few non-Malay vocabulary elements whose origin may be Old Javanese. Some contend it is between Old Tagalog and Old Javanese.[5] The document states that it releases its bearers, the children of Namwaran, from a debt in gold amounting to 1 kati and 8 suwarnas (865 grams).[3][4]

Dutch anthropologist and Hanunó’o script expert Antoon Postma has concluded that the document also mentions the places of Tondo (Tundun); Paila (Pailah), now an enclave of Barangay San Lorenzo, Norzagaray; Binuangan (Binwangan), now part of Obando; and Pulilan (Puliran); and Mdaŋ (the Javanese Kingdom of Medang), in present-day Indonesia.[4] The exact locations of Pailah and Puliran are debatable as these could refer to the present-day town of Pila and the southeastern part of Laguna de Bay (a large freshwater lake southeast of Metro Manila) that was previously known as Puliran—both close to where the plate was found.[6][7]

The Laguna Copperplate Inscription was found in 1989 near the mouth of the Lumbang River near Laguna de Bay, by a man who was dredging sand to turn into concrete. Suspecting that the artifact might have some value, the man sold it to an antique dealer who, having found no buyers, eventually sold it to the National Museum of the Philippines, where it was assigned to Alfredo E. Evangelista, head of its Anthropology Department.[3][10]

A year later, Antoon Postma noted that the inscription was similar to the ancient Indonesian script of Kawi. Postma translated the script and found the document dated itself to the Saka year 822, an old Hindu calendar date which corresponds to 900 CE.[4] This meant that the document pre-dated the arrival of Ferdinand Magellan in 1521 and is from about the same time as the mention of Philippines in the official Chinese Song dynasty History of Song for the year 972.[11]

The Laguna Copperplate Inscription, among other recent finds such as the Golden Tara of Butuan and 14th century pottery and gold jewellery in Cebu, is highly important in revising the ancient Philippine history, which was until then considered by some Western historians to be culturally isolated from the rest of Asia, as no evident pre-Hispanic written records were found at the time. Philippine historian William Henry Scott debunked these theories in 1968 with his Prehispanic Source materials for the Study of Philippine History which was subsequently published in 1984.[12]

The inscription is a document demonstrative of pre-Hispanic literacy and culture, and is considered to be a national treasure. It is currently deposited at the National Museum of Anthropology in Manila.
Cultural references
See also: Hinduism in the Philippines, Religion in pre-colonial Philippines, Indosphere, and Indianisation

The transliteration of the inscription shows heavy Sanskrit, Old Javanese and Malay linguistic influences.[3] Among the observations made by Antonio Pigafetta in the 16th century Boxer Codex was that Old Malay had currency amongst classical period Filipinos as a lingua franca.

The use of Hindu references in the Laguna Copperplate Inscription could also suggest that the author or authors of the inscription were adherents of Hinduism.[3] The Golden Tara statue, an ancient artefact discovered in Butuan, Agusan del Norte, dates from the same period and strongly suggests the presence of Hindu-Buddhist beliefs prior to the introduction (and subsequent subscription) to Roman Catholicism and Islam amongst Filipinos.

English translation
Long Live! In the Year of Saka 822, month of Waisakha, according to the astronomer.

The fourth day of the waning moon, Monday. On this occasion, Lady Angkatan, and her relative whose name is Bukah, the children of the Honourable Namwaran, were awarded a document of complete pardon from the Commander-in-Chief of Tundun, represented by the Lord Minister of Pailah, Jayadewa.

This means that, through the Honourable Scribe, the Honourable Namwaran is totally cleared of his salary-related debts of 1 Katî and 8 Suwarna, before the Honorable Lord Minister of Puliran Kasumuran; by the authority of the Lord Minister of Pailah, represented by Ganashakti.

The Honourable and widely renowned Lord Minister of Binwagan, represented by Bisruta. And, with his whole family, upon ordered of the Lord Minister of Dewata, represented by the Chief of Medang, because of his loyalty as a subject of the Commander-in-Chief

Therefore, the living descendants of the Honorable Namwaran are cleared of all debts of the Honourable Namwaran to the Lord Minister of Dewata.

This, in any case, whosoever, sometime in the future, who shall state that the debt is not yet cleared of the Honourable…[9]

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Born on this day:

1774 – Jean-Baptiste Biot, French physicist, astronomer, and mathematician (d. 1862)
Jean-Baptiste Biot (French: [bjo]; 21 April 1774 – 3 February 1862) was a French physicist, astronomer, and mathematician who established the reality of meteorites, made an early balloon flight, and studied the polarization of light. The mineral biotite was named in his honor.

Jean-Baptiste Biot was born in Paris on 21 April 1774 the son of Joseph Biot, a treasury official.[2]
He was educated at Lyceum Louis-le-Grand and École Polytechnique in 1794.[3] Biot served in the artillery before he was appointed professor of mathematics at Beauvais in 1797. He later went on to become a professor of physics at the Collège de France around 1800, and three years later was elected as a member of the French Academy of Sciences. In 1804 Biot was on board for the first scientific hot-air balloon ride with Gay-Lussac (NNDB 2009, O’Connor and Robertson 1997). They reached a height of 7016 metres (23,000 feet), quite dangerous without supplementary oxygen.

Biot was also a member of the Legion of Honor; he was elected chevalier in 1814 and commander in 1849. In 1815, he was elected a Foreign Member of the Royal Society of London,[4] in 1816 a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, and 1822 a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.[5] In addition, Biot received the Rumford Medal in 1840, awarded by the Royal Society in the field of thermal or optical properties of matter. (O’Connor and Robertson 1997). In 1850 Jean-Baptiste Biot published in the Journal des savants a 7-page memoir from his recollections of the period of the late 1790s and early 1800s concerning his encounters with Laplace.[6][7]

Jean-Baptiste Biot had a single son, Édouard Constant Biot, an engineer and Sinologist, born in 1803. Edouard died in 1850 and it was only thanks to the extraordinary efforts of his father that the second half of Edouard’s last book, the Chinese classic Tcheou-li, was readied for publication. It had been left in manuscript, unfinished. To publish it in correct form, Jean-Baptiste Biot wrote, he had to consult Stanislas Julien, the famous Sinologist, but also, especially for the translation of the most difficult part, the Kaogongji, he himself had to visit many workshops and questioned artisans and craftsmen about their methods and vocabulary in order to verify his son’s work. To this day, Biot’s translation remains the only translation into a Western language of this book.

He died in Paris on 3 February 1862.

Jean-Baptiste Biot made many contributions to the scientific community in his lifetime – most notably in optics, magnetism, and astronomy. The Biot–Savart law in magnetism is named after Biot and his colleague Félix Savart for their work in 1820.[8] In their experiment they showed a connection between electricity and magnetism by “starting with a long vertical wire and a magnetic needle some horizontal distance apart [and showing] that running a current through the wire caused the needle to move” (Parsley).

In 1803 Biot was sent by the Académie française to report back on 3000 meteorites that fell on L’Aigle, France (see L’Aigle (meteorite)). He found that the meteorites, called “stones” at the time, were from outer space.[9] With his report, Biot helped support Ernst Florens Friedrich Chladni’s argument that meteorites were debris from space, which he had published in 1794.[10]

Prior to Biot’s thorough investigation of the meteorites that fell near l’Aigle, France in 1803, very few truly believed that rocks found on Earth could have extraterrestrial origins. There were anecdotal tales of unusual rocks found on the ground after fireballs had been seen in the sky, but such stories were often dismissed as fantasy. Serious debate concerning the unusual rocks began in 1794 when German physicist Chladni published a book claiming that rocks had an extraterrestrial origin (Westrum). Only after Biot was able to analyze the rocks at l’Aigle was it commonly accepted that the fireballs seen in the sky were meteors falling through the atmosphere. Since Biot’s time, analysis of meteorites has resulted in accurate measurements of the chemical composition of the solar system. The composition and position of meteors in the solar system have also given astronomers clues as to how the solar system formed.

Polarized light
In 1812, Biot turned his attention to the study of optics, particularly the polarization of light. Prior to the 19th century, light was believed to consist of discrete packets called corpuscles. During the early 19th century, many scientists began to disregard the corpuscular theory in favor of the wave theory of light. Biot began his work on polarization to show that the results he was obtaining could appear only if light were made of corpuscles.

In 1815 he demonstrated that “polarized light, when passing through an organic substance, could be rotated clockwise or counterclockwise, dependent upon the optical axis of the material.”[11][12] His work in chromatic polarization and rotary polarization greatly advanced the field of optics, although it was later shown that his findings could also be obtained using the wave theory of light (Frankel 2009).

Biot’s work on the polarization of light has led to many breakthroughs in the field of optics. Liquid crystal displays (LCDs), such as television and computer screens, use light that is polarized by a filter as it enters the liquid crystal, to allow the liquid crystal to modulate the intensity of the transmitted light. This happens as the liquid crystal’s polarisation varies in response to an electric control signal applied across it. Polarizing filters are used extensively in photography to cut out unwanted reflections or to enhance reflection.

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FYI April 20, 2017











On this day:

1535 – The sun dog phenomenon observed over Stockholm and depicted in the famous painting Vädersolstavlan.
Vädersolstavlan (help·info) (Swedish for “The Sun Dog Painting”) is an oil-on-panel painting depicting a halo display, an atmospheric optical phenomenon, observed over Stockholm on April 20, 1535. It is named after the sun dogs (Swedish: Vädersol, “Weather sun”) appearing on the upper right part of the painting. While chiefly noted for being the oldest depiction of Stockholm in colour,[1] it is arguably also the oldest Swedish landscape painting and the oldest depiction of sun dogs.

The original painting, which was produced shortly after the event and traditionally attributed to Urban målare (“Urban [the] Painter”), is lost, and virtually nothing is known about it. However, a copy from 1636 by Jacob Heinrich Elbfas held in Storkyrkan in Stockholm, is believed to be an accurate copy and was until recently erroneously thought to be the restored original. It was previously covered by layers of brownish varnish, and the image was hardly discernible until carefully restored and thoroughly documented in 1998–1999.

The painting was produced during an important time in Swedish history. The establishment of modern Sweden coincided with the introduction of Protestantism and the break-up with Denmark and the Kalmar Union. The painting was commissioned by the Swedish reformer Olaus Petri, and the resulting controversies between him and King Gustav Vasa and the historical context remained a well-kept secret for centuries. During the 20th century the painting became an icon for the history of Stockholm, and it is now frequently displayed whenever the history of the city is commemorated.

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17th century painting of Stockholm, a copy of the so called Vädersolstavlan, depicting a halo display event in 1535. Cleaned in 1998. The visible haloes are: 22 ° halo, at upper right (should be centered on the Sun) parhelic circle, large white circle (centered on the zenith: appears ‘horizontal’ in the sky) parhelia including 2 sundogs, 2 120° parhelia and the anthelion (dots on the parhelic circle, resp. nearest to farthest from the Sun) upper tangent arc and possible Parry arc (2 crossing arcs just left of the 22° halo (actually ‘above’ the 22°, in the sky); not realistically shown) circumzenithal arc, smaller crescent inside the parhelic circle (also centered on the zenith: appears ‘horizontal’, high in the sky) infralateral arc (bottom right) Note that the whole sky appears strongly tilted in the image: the upper right corner is actually down in the sky (when looking towards the Sun), the zenith is at the center of the circumzenithal arc and parhelic circle. This may result from the artist’s choice to represent the display in a realistic orientation relative to the landscape: in this case the sun would have shone from 3/4 back to the right of an observer facing the city. The relative brightnesses of the haloes are quite accurate.

Born on this day:

1586 – Rose of Lima, Peruvian mystic and saint (d. 1617)
Rose of Lima, T.O.S.D. (April 20, 1586 – August 24, 1617), was a member of the Third Order of Saint Dominic in Lima, Peru, who became known for both her life of severe asceticism and her care of the needy of the city through her own private efforts. A lay member of the Dominican Order, she has been declared a saint by the Catholic Church, being the first person born in the Americas to be canonized as a saint.

As a saint, Rose of Lima is designated as a co-patroness of the Philippines along with Saint Pudentiana, who were both moved as second-class patronage in September 1942 by Pope Pius XII, but remains the primary patroness of Peru and the indigenous natives of Latin America. Her image is featured on the highest denomination banknote of Peru.

She was born Isabel Flores de Oliva in the city of Lima, then in the Viceroyalty of Peru, on April 20, 1586. She was one of the many children of Gaspar Flores, a harquebusier in the Imperial Spanish army, born in Baños de Montemayor (Spain), and his wife, María de Oliva y Herrera, a criolla native of Lima. Her later nickname “Rose” comes from an incident in her babyhood: a servant claimed to have seen her face transform into a rose. In 1597 she was confirmed by the Archbishop of Lima, Toribio de Mogrovejo, who was also to be declared a saint. She formally took the name of Rose at that time.[1]

As a young girl—in emulation of the noted Dominican tertiary, St. Catherine of Siena—she began to fast three times a week and performed severe penances in secret. When she was admired for her beauty, Rose cut off her hair and smeared pepper on her face, upset that men were beginning to take notice of her.[2] She rejected all suitors against the objections of her friends and her family. Despite the censure of her parents, she spent many hours contemplating the Blessed Sacrament, which she received daily, an extremely rare practice in that period. She was determined to take a vow of virginity, which was opposed by her parents, who wished her to marry.[1] Finally, out of frustration, her father gave her a room to herself in the family home.

After daily fasting, she took to permanently abstain from eating meat. She helped the sick and hungry around her community, bringing them to her room and taking care of them. Rose sold her fine needlework, and took flowers that she grew to market, to help her family. She made and sold lace and embroidery to care for the poor, and she prayed and did penance in a little grotto that she had built. Otherwise, she became a recluse, leaving her room only for her visits to church.[2]

She attracted the attention of the friars of the Dominican Order. She wanted to become a nun, but her father forbade it, so she instead entered the Third Order of St. Dominic while living in her parents’ home. In her twentieth year she donned the habit of a tertiary and took a vow of perpetual virginity. She only allowed herself to sleep two hours a night at most, so that she had more hours to devote to prayer.[3] She donned a heavy crown made of silver, with small spikes on the inside, in emulation of the Crown of Thorns worn by Christ.[2]

For eleven years she lived this way, with intervals of ecstasy, and eventually died on August 24, 1617, at the young age of 31. It is said that she prophesied the date of her death. Her funeral was held in the cathedral, attended by all the public authorities of Lima.

Rose was beatified by Pope Clement IX on May 10, 1667, and canonized on April 12, 1671, by Pope Clement X, the first Catholic in the Americas to be declared a saint. Her shrine, alongside those of her friends, St. Martin de Porres and Saint John Macias, is located inside the convent of St. Dominic in Lima. The Roman Catholic Church says that many miracles followed her death; there were stories that she had cured a leper, also that, at the time of her death the city of Lima smelled like Roses. Roses started falling from the sky. Many places in the New World are named Santa Rosa after her. Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI was especially devoted to her.[citation needed]
Saint Rose of Lima; facial reconstruction.

Her liturgical feast was inserted into the General Roman Calendar in 1729 for celebration initially on August 30, because August 24, the date of her death, is the feast of Saint Bartholomew the Apostle and August 30 was the closest date not already allocated to a well-known saint.[4] Pope Paul VI’s 1969 revision of the calendar made August 23 available, the day on which her feast day is now celebrated throughout the world, including Spain, but excluding Peru and some other Latin American countries, where August 30 is a public holiday in her honor.

She is honored together with Martin de Porres and Toribio de Mogrovejo with a feast day on the liturgical calendar of the Episcopal Church (USA) on August 23.

Early lives of Santa Rosa were written by the Dominican Father Hansen, “Vita Sanctae Rosae” (2 vols., Rome, 1664–1668), and Vicente Orsini, afterward. Pope Benedict XIII wrote “Concentus Dominicano, Bononiensis ecclesia, in album Sanctorum Ludovici Bertrandi et Rosae de Sancta Maria, ordinero praedicatorum” (Venice, 1674).

There is a park named for her in downtown Sacramento, California.[5] A plot of land at 7th and K streets was given to the Roman Catholic Church by Peter Burnett, first Governor of the State of California. Father Peter Anderson built one of the first of two churches in the diocese to be consecrated under the patronage of St Rose.[6]

In the Caribbean twin-island state of Trinidad and Tobago, the Santa Rosa Carib Community, located in Arima, is the largest organization of indigenous peoples on the island.[7] The second oldest parish in the Diocese of Port of Spain is also named after this saint. The Santa Rosa Church, which is located in the town of Arima, was established on April 20, 1786 as the Indian Mission of Santa Rosa de Arima, on the foundations of a Capuchin Mission previously established in 1749.[8]

St. Rose’s skull, surmounted with a crown of roses, is on public display at the Basilica in Lima, Peru, along with that of Saint Martin de Porres. It was customary to keep the torso in the basilica and pass the head around the country.

Saint Rose is the patroness of the Americas;[1] of indigenous people of the Americas, especially of Lima, Peru; of Sittard, the Netherlands; and of India.

Maywood, California, is known as the largest parish dedicated to Santa Rosa.

On the last weekend in August, the Fiesta de Santa Rosa is celebrated in Dixon, New Mexico.

A barony of Saint Rose of Lima was created in the Royal House of Rwanda on 25th July 2016 by the Catholic king in exile, King Kigeli V of Rwanda.

Parishes dedicated to St. Rose of Lima are located in:
Kapunda, SA, Australia;[9]
Collaroy Plateau, NSW, Australia;
Rosedale, Victoria, Australia;
Sooke, British Columbia, Canada;[10]
Cochin, India;
Sittard, the Netherlands; and
Santa Rosa de Juarez, Oaxaca, Mexico.
Paramaribo, Suriname
Safford, Arizona; USA
Chula Vista, California;[11]
Paso Robles, California;[12]
Simi Valley, California;[13]
Buena Vista, Colorado;[14]
Newtown, Connecticut;[15]
Milton, Florida;
Montrose, Illinois;[16]
Quincy, Illinois;[17]
Franklin, Indiana;[18]
Great Bend, Kansas;[19]
Cloverport, Kentucky;[16]
Jay, Maine;[20]
Gaithersburg, Maryland;[21]
Chelsea, Massachusetts;
Chicopee, Massachusetts;[22]
Northborough, Massachusetts;[23]
Topsfield, Massachusetts;[24]
Hastings, Michigan;
Roseville, Minnesota;[25]
De Soto, Missouri;[26]
Belmar, New Jersey;
Haddon Heights, New Jersey;
Freehold, New Jersey;[27]
Short Hills, New Jersey;
Forestville, New York;
Massapequa, New York;[28]
Rockaway Beach, New York;
Rockaway, New York;[29]
Cincinnati, Ohio;
Perrysburg, Ohio;[30]
Lima, Ohio;[31]
Altoona, Pennsylvania;[32]
Carbondale, Pennsylvania;
Eddystone, Pennsylvania;
Dillon, Montana;
Murfreesboro, Tennessee;[33]
Andice, Texas;[34]
Houston, Texas;[35]
San Antonio, Texas;[36]
Cheney, Washington.[37]
Santa Rosa, California;[38]

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DogTag Brewing

Kindle April 19, 2017

Source: Books Available For Review Continue reading

FYI April 19, 2017










On this day:

1713 – With no living male heirs, Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor, issues the Pragmatic Sanction of 1713 to ensure that Habsburg lands and the Austrian throne would be inherited by his daughter, Maria Theresa (not actually born until 1717).
The Pragmatic Sanction (Latin: Sanctio Pragmatica) was an edict issued by Charles VI on 19 April 1713, to ensure that the Habsburg hereditary possessions could be inherited by a daughter. The Head of the House of Habsburg ruled the Archduchy of Austria, the Kingdom of Hungary, the Kingdom of Croatia, the Kingdom of Bohemia, the Italian territories awarded to Austria by the Treaty of Utrecht (Duchy of Milan, Kingdom of Naples and Kingdom of Sicily), and the Austrian Netherlands. The Pragmatic Sanction did not affect the office of Holy Roman Emperor because the Imperial crown was elective, not hereditary; even though successive elected Habsburg rulers headed the Holy Roman Empire since 1438.

Since their marriage in 1708, Charles and his wife Elizabeth Christine had not had children, and since 1711 Charles had been the sole surviving male member of the House of Habsburg. Charles’s elder brother Joseph I had died without male issue, making accession of a female a very plausible contingency. Because Salic law precluded female inheritance, Charles VI needed to take extraordinary measures to avoid a succession dispute.[1] Charles VI was, indeed, ultimately succeeded by his elder daughter Maria Theresa (born 1717). Despite the promulgation of the Pragmatic Sanction, however, her accession in 1740 resulted in the outbreak of the War of the Austrian Succession.

Events leading to the Pragmatic Sanction
Main article: Mutual Pact of Succession
In 1700, the senior (oldest, first-in-line) branch of the House of Habsburg became extinct with the death of Charles II of Spain. The War of the Spanish Succession ensued, with Louis XIV of France claiming the crowns of Spain for his grandson Philip and Leopold I claiming them for his son Charles. In 1703, Charles and Joseph, the sons of Leopold, signed the Mutual Pact of Succession, granting succession rights to the daughters of Joseph and Charles in case of complete extinction of the male line, but favouring Joseph’s daughters over Charles’s, because Joseph was older.

In 1705, Leopold I died and was succeeded by his elder son, Joseph I. Six years later, Joseph I died leaving behind two daughters, Archduchesses Maria Josepha and Maria Amalia. Charles succeeded Joseph, according to the Pact, and Maria Josepha became his heir presumptive. However, Charles soon expressed a wish to amend the Pact in order to give his own future daughters precedence over his nieces. On 19 April 1713, the Emperor announced the changes in a secret session of the council.[2]

Securing the right to succeed for his own daughters, who were not even born yet, became Charles’s obsession. The previous succession laws had also forbidden the partition of the Habsburg dominions and provided for succession by females but they had been mostly hypothetical. The Pragmatic Sanction was the first such document to be publicly announced and as such required formal acceptance by the estates of the realms it concerned.[3]

Foreign recognition
For 10 years, Charles VI labored, with the support of his closest advisor Johann Christoph von Bartenstein, to have his sanction accepted by the courts of Europe. Only the Electorate of Saxony and the Electorate of Bavaria did not accept, because it was detrimental to their inheritance rights. (Frederick Augustus II, Elector of Saxony was married to Maria Josepha of Austria and Charles, Elector of Bavaria to Maria Amalia of Austria, both daughters of Charles’s deceased elder brother Joseph I)

France accepted in exchange for the duchy of Lorraine, under the Treaty of Vienna (1738).
Spain’s acceptance was also gained under the Treaty of Vienna (1738). In 1731, the 15-year-old Spanish prince Charles became the Duke of Parma and Piacenza, as Charles I, on the death of his childless granduncle Antonio Farnese. He went on to conquer Naples and Sicily, after which he returned Parma to the Emperor by the Treaty of Vienna (1738). In 1759 he became King of Spain as Charles III.
Great Britain and the Dutch Republic accepted in exchange for the cessation of operations of the Ostend Company.
King Frederick I of Prussia approved for his loyalty to the Emperor.

Charles VI made commitments with Russia and Augustus of Saxony, King of Poland from which came two wars: the War of the Polish Succession against France and Spain, which cost him Naples and Sicily, and the Austro-Russian–Turkish War, which cost him Little Wallachia and northern Serbia, including the Fortress of Belgrade.

Internal recognition
Hungary, which had an elective kingship, had accepted the house of Habsburg as hereditary kings in the male line without election in 1687 but not semi-Salic inheritance. The Emperor-King agreed that if the Habsburg male line became extinct, Hungary would once again have an elective monarchy. This was the rule in the Kingdom of Bohemia too. Maria Theresa, however, still gained the throne of Hungary; the Hungarian Parliament voted its own Pragmatic Sanction in 1723 in which the Kingdom of Hungary accepted female inheritance supporting her to become queen of Hungary.[4] Croatia was one of the crown lands that supported Emperor Charles’s Pragmatic Sanction of 1713[5] and supported Empress Maria Theresa in the War of the Austrian Succession of 1741–48 and the Croatian Parliament in 1712 signed their own Pragmatic Sanction of 1712. Subsequently, the empress made significant contributions to Croatian matters, by making several changes in the administrative control of the Military Frontier, the feudal and tax system. She also gave the independent port of Rijeka to Croatia in 1776.

Sanction’s failure
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Charles VI spent the time of his reign preparing Europe for a female ruler, but he did not prepare his daughter, Maria Theresa. He would not read documents to her, take her to meetings, or allow her to be introduced to ministers or have any preparation for the power she would receive in 1740. It is possible that it was because such instruction would imply an acceptance of his inability to produce a male heir.

Charles VI managed to get the great European powers to agree to the Pragmatic Sanction (for the time being) and died in 1740 with no male heirs. However, France, Prussia, Bavaria, and Saxony broke their promises and contested the claims of his daughter Maria Theresa on his Austrian lands, and initiated the War of the Austrian Succession, in which Austria lost Silesia to Prussia. The elective office of Holy Roman Emperor was filled by Joseph I’s son-in-law Charles Albert of Bavaria, marking the first time in several hundred years that the position was not held by a Habsburg.

As Emperor Charles VII, he lost his own country, Bavaria, to the Austrian army of his wife’s cousin Maria Theresa and then died. His son, Maximilian III Joseph, Elector of Bavaria, renounced claims on Austria in exchange for the return of his paternal duchy of Bavaria. Maria Theresa’s husband was elected Holy Roman Emperor as Francis I in 1745. The Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, in 1748, finally recognized Maria Theresa’s rule.



Born on this day:

1787 – Deaf Smith, American soldier (d. 1837)
Erastus “Deaf” Smith (April 19, 1787 – November 30, 1837) was an American frontiersman noted for his part in the Texas Revolution and the Army of the Republic of Texas. He fought at the Grass Fight and the Battle of San Jacinto. After the war, Deaf Smith led a company of Texas Rangers. His name was generally pronounced /ˈdiːf/ DEEF.[citation needed]

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Smith was born in Dutchess County, New York to Chilab and Mary Smith. In 1798, his family moved to Port Gibson, Mississippi, near Natchez. He came to Texas in 1821 for health reasons, but returned to Natchez in 1822. His health apparently recovered, except for a partial loss of hearing, hence the nickname “Deaf”. Smith, also known as “El Sordo,” appeared in many areas of Mexican Texas and was in most significant actions related to development of the region both under Mexico and during evolution of independence.

At San Jose Mission, he introduced a fine stock of Muley cattle from Louisiana to the San Antonio area, where the Longhorn breed was previously popular. He used San Antonio de Bexar as a base. Smith’s family lived at the southwest corner of Presa and Nueva Streets in San Antonio de Bexar.

In 1822, Smith married a Tejana, Guadalupe Ruiz de Durán (b. 12 December 1797), the daughter of Salvador Ruiz de Castaneda and María Ygnacia Robleau. Guadalupe was the widow of Jose María Vicente Durán (m. 1812), by whom she had three children: Refugia, Josefa, and Lucinda. The Smiths had four children: Susan Concepcion (b. August 15, 1823 – d. 22 Jan 1849), Gertrudes (b. 1825; m. Macario Tarin), Travis (b. 1827 – d. 1833) and Simona (b. October 28, 1829, Mission Espada – died November 11, 1890). Susan C. Smith married Nathaniel Fisk (b. September 4, 1815, Scranton, Vermont – died April 5, 1876) in 1839. After her death, Fisk married her sister, Simona, on August 1, 1849.

Deaf Smith moved freely between both Anglo and Hispanic Tejano societies, was known to be a man of few words; fiercely loyal to his superiors and dedicated to the job at hand. Because of his knowledge of both Anglo and Hispanic cultures and the terrain of Texas, he served as a guide, scout, and spy.

Texan Army
Even as many Texas settlers formed an army and marched on San Antonio de Bexar, Smith originally intended to remain neutral. He changed his mind after the Texian Army, led by Stephen F. Austin, initiated a siege of Bexar. As the siege began, Smith and his son-in-law Hendrick Arnold were absent from town, on a hunting trip. The Mexican army increased security in the town, and refused to allow Smith and Arnold to return to their homes within the city. An indignant Smith immediately joined the Texian Army. He wrote to Austin: “I told you yesterday that I would not take sides in this war but, Sir, I now tender you my services as the Mexicans acted rascally with me”.[1]

His intelligence gathering was important at the Battle of Concepcion. In October 1835, he discovered the mule train that brought on the Grass Fight and in December 1835 he guided troops into San Antonio in the Siege and Battle of Bexar where he was wounded atop the Veramendi House at the same time that Ben Milam was killed. After the evacuation of centralista troops from San Antonio in the latter engagement, he moved his family to Columbia. At the Alamo, he served as a courier to William Barrett Travis and carried Travis’s letter from the Alamo on February 15, 1836. He met General Sam Houston at Gonzalez after the signing of the Texan Declaration of Independence at Washington-on-the-Brazos, Texas. Dispatched back to Bexar, Houston relied on Smith to determine the fate of the Alamo garrison. He met and escorted Mrs. Almeron Dickinson and party to report to General Houston in Gonzales regarding the fate of the Alamo defenders.

Cavalry Company
In Gonzales, Smith was assigned to Captain Karnes’ Cavalry Company of the 1st Regiment of Volunteers and placed in command of new recruits. Smith operated continuously on the way to, at, and after the Battle of San Jacinto with small groups of volunteers from the cavalry unit and sometimes other units, successfully generating intelligence and special missions almost continuously.[2] At Harrisburg, he captured a Mexican courier with dispatches revealing the strength and position of Antonio López de Santa Anna’s army. On 21 April prior to the Battle of San Jacinto, he and his men destroyed Vince’s Bridge, the means of any retreat or reinforcements of both armies. He joined his unit to participate in the main battle. He was the courier that took the captured Antonio López de Santa Anna’s orders to General Filisola’s army to retreat from Texas. He captured General Cos, who had escaped from the main battle.

Laredo, Texas
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After the Battle of San Jacinto, Deaf Smith returned to Columbia and later moved to Richmond in Fort Bend County. Shortly before his death, Smith raised a company of twenty Texas Rangers, who fought on March 17, 1837, near what is now the Laredo International Airport in Laredo, against a superior Mexican force. Two of Smith’s men were wounded, and ten Mexicans were killed and ten others injured. Smith also captured forty horses. This incident occurred nearly a year after General Lopez de Santa Anna had surrendered at San Jacinto to General Sam Houston. Smith at the time offered no further resistance against the Mexicans, and he guided the Texans back to San Antonio.

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The Republic of Texas legislature in November 1836 had granted Smith “any house and lot in the city of Bexar, which may be confiscated for public use”. Smith died in Richmond, Texas, at age of fifty, at the home of Randall Jones. He is buried in the Episcopal churchyard with a modest marker, “Deaf Smith, The Texas Spy, Died Nov. 30, 1837.” His widow chose the old Granado homeplace at the southeast corner of Main Plaza and Commerce Street in San Antonio. Smith was also granted land for his service to the Texas Republic. His widow returned to San Antonio, died there on May 1, 1849, and is interred at the Catholic Cemetery.

Posthumous legacy
Plaque at the Deaf Smith County Historical Museum in Hereford, Texas, highlights Smith’s career: “A man more brave and honest never lived.” Click to read.

Deaf Smith County, Texas is named in his honor,[3] which unlike his nickname, is pronounced by most residents as /ˈdɛf/ DEFF. Likewise, a brand of peanut butter known as Deaf Smith was manufactured by the Arrowhead Mills company, which was founded in 1960 by Frank Ford, then from Hereford, the seat of Deaf Smith County.

Smith is also honored for his work in South Texas with a historical marker at the entrance to Lake Casa Blanca International Park in Laredo.

Many school districts in Texas name schools after Heroes of the Texas Revolution. There are several schools across the state named for Deaf Smith, including Lamar CISD’s Deaf Smith Elementary in Richmond, Texas.

In popular culture
1915, Martyrs of the Alamo, Smith was played by Sam De Grasse (as “Silent Smith”)
1939, Man of Conquest, Smith was played by Max Terhune.
1956,The First Texan, Smith was played by Chubby Johnson
1958, in “Deaf Smith” episode of The Adventures of Jim Bowie, Deaf Smith was played by Vic Perrin.
1960, The Alamo, Smith was played by Frankie Avalon (as “Smitty”)
1972, Los Amigos (Smith & Johnny Ears) is based on Smith; Anthony Quinn played the Deaf Smith character.
1986, TV Movie Houston: The Legend of Texas, Smith was played by Ivy Pryce.
1998, TNT’s TV Movie Two for Texas, Smith was played by Richard Andrew Jones
2004, Alamo, Smith was played by Michael Crabtree
2015, Texas Rising, Smith was played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan


Deaf Smith Plaque, Hereford, TX




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Sheet Pan Breakfast Break



FYI April 18, 2017





On this day:

 1857 – “The Spirits Book” by Allan Kardec is published, marking the birth of Spiritualism in France.
The Spirits Book (Le Livre des Esprits in original French) is part of the Spiritist Codification, and is regarded as one of the five fundamental works of Spiritism. It was published by the French educator Allan Kardec on April 18, 1857. It was the first and remains the most important spiritist book, because it addresses in first hand all questions developed subsequently by Allan Kardec.

The book is structured as a collection of questions regarding the origin of the spirits, the purpose of the life, the order of the universe, evil and good and the afterlife. Its answers, according to Kardec, were given to him by a group of spirits who identified themselves as “The Spirit of Truth”, with whom he communicated in several Spiritist sessions during the 1850s. Kardec, who considered himself an “organizer” rather than an author, grouped the questions and their answers by theme, occasionally including lengthier digressions the spirits had dictated to him on specific subjects, some signed by philosophers such as Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Aquinas and writers including Voltaire.

The basic concepts presented by the book are:

Monotheism (i.e. there is only one Supreme Being, the source of all good and evil alike)
Creationism (i.e. God created the principle of everything, not things as they are now)
validity of Jesus’ ethics and moral teachings
survival of the soul (spirit) after death (disincarnation)
Reincarnation of the souls (plurality of existences)
inherent morality of God and His creation
existence of life all over the Universe (plurality of worlds)
progression of the soul towards perfection by experience through several lives
migration of spirits from one world to another (transmigration)
possibility of manifestation of spirits in the living world by means of mediums
karma (not actually termed such) as an explanation for apparent injustices
Good works are important to spiritual realization, not necessarily faith

The Spirits Book is divided into four parts or “books”, each one split into several chapters. Chapters are not regularly subdivided into sections — though most have titles marking the beginning of particularly sought subjects. Book 3’s chapters, for some reason, are not numbered.

Book One (untitled) deals with the origins of the universe and the attributes of God.
Chapter 1 (God) is intended to clarify the true essence of God.
Chapter 2 (General Elements of the Universe) explains the difference between spiritual and material matter and why spirits are not believed by materialists.
Chapter 3 (Vital Principle) is about the differences between animate and inanimate beings, between the living and the dead and the features of intelligence compared to instinct.
Book Two (The Spirit-World) describes spiritual life.
Chapter 1 (Spirits) explains what spirits are, where they come from, what they are like, how they manifest, the purpose of their existence, and how people perceive them.
Chapter 2 (Incarnation of Spirits) is about why spirits incarnate in material bodies.
Chapter 3 (Return from Corporeal Life to Spirit Life) is about disincarnation (the death of the Physical Body).
Chapter 4 (Plurality of Existences) is about reincarnation.
Chapter 5 (Considerations on the Plurality of Existences) is an essay by Kardec meant to clarify the doctrine of the previous chapter.
Chapter 6 (Spirit Life) describes what exists in the afterlife, the spiritual world.
Chapter 7 (Return to Corporeal Life) explains how and when spirits come back to life by literally being born again.
Chapter 8 (Emancipation of the Soul) is about situations in which the spirit of a living person may be free to interact with the spirits of the dead, as in near-death experiences or during a deep sleep. This chapter does not cover conscious mediumship.
Chapter 9 (Intervention of Spirits in the Material World) is about situations in which the spirits of the dead may, ostensibly or not, intentionally or not, have any form of influence on events of the living world.
Chapter 10 (Occupations and Missions of the Spirits) is an essay by Kardec on the different reasons why high spirits interfere with the world.
Chapter 11 (The Three Reigns) is about the differences between inanimate beings (mineral), plants, and animals and contains the standard Spiritist Doctrine on Metempsychosis.
Book Three (Moral Laws) contains what Kardec regarded as the kernel of his doctrine, the special and fair (in his view) moral laws that provided explanations and consoled people in moments of anger or grief. Such laws were actually the following:
Divine Law
The Law of Adoration
The Law of Labour
The Law of Reproduction
The Law of Preservation
The Law of Destruction
Social Law
The Law of Progress
The Law of Equality
The Law of Liberty
The Law of Justice, Love and Charity
Moral Perfection
Book Four (Hopes and Consolations) is about the most common doubts people have about religion in general and tries to solve the most sensitive ones under new light.
Chapter 1 (Earthly Joys and Sorrows) is about the meaning of the experiences we have on Earth, both good and bad.
Chapter 2 (Future Joys and Sorrows) is about the laws governing the future lives we are bound to live after we die.

Basic concepts
Some aspects of the doctrine contained in the book are:aAAA
Man is a Spirit with a material body, i.e. our truer selves are not material, but spiritual.
A living person is made of three entities: the spirit, the body and the spiritual body (the perispirit) that binds both. The perispirit is an original word of Spiritism.
Spirits pre-exist and will survive matter that was created.
There are not angels or demons as separate orders in the creation, but only good and evil spirits. Even a beastly person will eventually attain perfection.
All Spirits are created simple and ignorant. They gradually evolve intellectually and morally, so passing from an inferior order to more elevated ones until finally reaching perfection.
All Spirits preserve their individuality, before, during and after each life (incarnation). However, the amount of memory one retains depends on one’s level of spiritual progression.
The different corporeal existences of the Spirit are progressive and not regressive. The pace of their progress, however, depends on the effort made towards betterment. Spirits can stagnate for so long that it seems to be an eternity and it can even appear that they have retrograded.
Spirits pertain to various orders, according to the degree of perfection they have attained, in three major categories (with fluid limits and unknown number of subcategories): Pure Spirits, who have attained maximum perfection; Good Spirits, whose desire towards goodness predominates, and Imperfect Spirits, who are characterized by ignorance and evil impulses. The relationship of Spirits with Man is constant and has always existed. The Good Spirits do their best to lead us towards goodness and uphold us during our trials, helping us to support them with courage and resignation. By contrast, the Imperfect Spirits try to incite us toward evil.
Everyone has their own spirit-protector, otherwise known as a guardian angel, who is entrusted with keeping watch over somebody as a mission or trial for them. Similarly to our incarnation on the earth, this mission for them can be a way of advancing and purifying themselves.
Jesus is the guide and model for mankind. The Doctrine which he taught and exemplified is the most pure expression of God’s Laws. However, most of the traditional doctrine on him being the Christ (Messiah) is seen under a different light. Aspects regarded as keystones of faith by most denominations, like trinitarianism and the virgin birth are not seen as important, while his resurrection is explained in another way. His death also has a different interpretation: instead of a sacrifice to atone for our sins, it is an example of the importance of being coherent and resisting temptation.
Man has free will, but must face the consequences of his deeds.
The future life is in accordance to one’s behavior and learning needs.

Born on this day:

 1813 – James McCune Smith, African-American physician, apothecary, abolitionist, and author (d. 1865)
James McCune Smith (April 18, 1813 – November 17, 1865) was an American physician, apothecary, abolitionist, and author. He was the first African American to hold a medical degree and graduated at the top in his class at the University of Glasgow. He was the first African American to run a pharmacy in the United States.

In addition to practicing as a doctor for nearly 20 years at the Colored Orphan Asylum in Manhattan, Smith was a public intellectual: he contributed articles to medical journals, participated in learned societies, and wrote numerous essays and articles drawing from his medical and statistical training. He used his training in medicine and statistics to refute common misconceptions about race, intelligence, medicine, and society in general. Invited as a founding member of the New York Statistics Society in 1852, which promoted a new science, he was elected as a member in 1854 of the recently founded American Geographic Society. But he was never admitted to the American Medical Association or local medical associations.

He has been most well known for his leadership as an abolitionist; a member of the American Anti-Slavery Society, with Frederick Douglass he helped start the National Council of Colored People in 1853, the first permanent national organization for blacks. Douglass called Smith “the single most important influence on his life.”[1] Smith was one of the Committee of Thirteen, who organized in 1850 in New York City to resist the newly passed Fugitive Slave Law by aiding fugitive slaves through the Underground Railroad. Other leading abolitionist activists were among his friends and colleagues. From the 1840s, he lectured on race and abolitionism and wrote numerous articles to refute racist ideas about black capacities.

Both Smith and his wife were of mixed-race African and European ancestry. As he became economically successful, he built a house in a good neighborhood; in the 1860 census he and his family were classified in that neighborhood as white, whereas in 1850 they were classified as mulatto. He served for nearly 20 years as the doctor at the Colored Orphan Asylum in New York but, after it was burned down in July 1863 by a mob in the New York Draft Riots, in which nearly 100 blacks were killed, Smith moved his family and practice out to Brooklyn for safety. The parents stressed education for their children. In the 1870 census, his widow and children continued to be classified as white.

To escape racial discrimination, his children passed into white society: the four surviving sons married white spouses; his unmarried daughter lived with a brother. They worked as teachers, a lawyer, and business people. Smith’s unique achievements as a pioneering African-American doctor were rediscovered by 20th-century historians. They were relearned by his descendants in the twenty-first century when a three-times-great-granddaughter took a history class and found his name in her grandmother’s family bible. In 2010, several Smith descendants commissioned a new tombstone for his grave in Brooklyn. They gathered to honor him and their African-American ancestry.

More on wiki:









FYI April 17, 2017





On this day:

1907 – The Ellis Island immigration center processes 11,747 people, more than on any other day.


Born on this day:

1906 – Sidney Garfield, American physician, co-founded Kaiser Permanente (d. 1984)
Sidney R. Garfield (17 April 1906[2] – 29 December 1984[3]) was a medical doctor and a pioneer of health maintenance organizations. He co-founded the Kaiser Permanente healthcare system with businessman Henry J. Kaiser. He graduated from the University of Iowa College of Medicine in 1928, which is now called the Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine.

Kaiser Permanente
In 1933, Garfield opened his Contractor’s General Hospital in the Mojave Desert, east of Los Angeles, California. This hospital was set up to provide medical care for the 5,000 workers on the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California’s aqueduct, which was designed to bring water from the Colorado River to Los Angeles.[4]

The hospital started as fee-for-service, but insurance companies were slow to pay, and non-payment was also a problem. Garfield made an arrangement with Industrial Indemnity Exchange, the largest insurer on the Colorado River Aqueduct project. The agreement with the insurance company was structured as a “prepayment” to the hospital[5]—a nickel a day per worker. The new prepaid financing plan was an immediate success.

Garfield was able to provide medical and hospital care for the workers for industrial accidents. The system worked so well that Garfield decided to offer total medical care for the workers for an additional nickel a day from the workers themselves. About 95% of the workers signed up.[6]

The Kaiser Richmond Field Hospital for the Kaiser Shipyards, financed by the United States Maritime Commission, opened on August 10, 1942. It was sponsored by Henry J. Kaiser’s Permanente Foundation and Garfield was the Medical Director. The field hospital served as the mid-level component of a three-tier medical care system that also included six well-equipped first aid stations at the individual shipyards, and the main Kaiser Permanente hospital in Oakland, California, where the most critical cases were treated. Together, these facilities served the employees of the Kaiser shipyards who had signed up for the Permanente Health Plan (commonly referred to as the “Kaiser Plan”), one of the country’s first voluntary pre-paid medical plans, and a direct precursor to the Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) defined by the federal Health Maintenance Organization Act of 1973.

By August 1944, 92.2 percent of all Richmond shipyard employees had joined the plan,[7] the first voluntary group plan in the country to feature group medical practice, prepayment and substantial medical facilities on a large scale.

In part due to wartime materials rationing, Garfield’s original field hospital was a single-story wood frame structure designed in a simple modernist mode. Intended for use primarily as an emergency facility, it opened with only 10 beds. Later additions increased its capacity to 160 beds by 1944. The Field Hospital operated as a Kaiser Permanente hospital until closing in 1995.

As the war came to an end, the bay area shipyards were rapidly scaled back and closed. The health plan membership shrank precipitously. The caregiving staff was correspondingly reduced. At its nadir as few as a dozen medical doctors remained in the organization. New postwar industries however hired workers needing health care. New health plan participants were recruited and expanded to include workers’ families as well. Garfield was instrumental in managing this dramatic transformation. He continued in this position into the late 1950s. By 1990, Kaiser Permanente was the country’s largest nonprofit HMO.






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