FYI July 20, 2022

On This Day

911 – Rollo lays siege to Chartres.
The siege of Chartres was part of the Viking incursions. In 858, Norsemen raided and burned down the Burgundian city of Chartres (now in the Eure-et-Loir department of France). After that, the town’s defenses were rebuilt and strengthened. It turned into a fortified, trapezoid-like city, going close to the river.

In 911, Rollo led the Danes in another siege of the city. Richard, Duke of Burgundy, split his forces into three corps, the first being made up of Aquitanians, to defend it.[1] According to legend, Bishop Gantelme exposed the Virgin’s tunic on the ramparts and led a mob of peasants to charge, and the Norsemen fled as a result.[2][3]

The West Frankish cavalry led by King Charles the Simple, which had arrived, now pursued the Norsemen. Short on time to be able to board his army onto his ships due to the rapid approach of the cavalry, Rollo and his men decided to make a defensive wall by slaughtering the livestock from his ships. The Frankish charge was halted as their horses were intimidated by the sight and smell of the livestock corpses.

The Franks, unable to attack, decided to instead open negotiations with Rollo. The Danes had been formidable enough to persuade Charles the Simple that they might become valuable allies.[4] And thus the battle ended, as both sides began formulating the Treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte.

In 1618 the Italian painter Padovanino painted a version of the event which now hangs in the Pinacoteca di Brera.[5]


Born On This Day

682 – Taichō, Japanese monk and scholar (d. 767)
Taichō (泰澄, July 20, 682 – April 20, 767) was a shugendō monk in Nara period Japan. He was raised in Echizen Province, which was in the southern portion of present-day Fukui Prefecture. He was the second son of Mikami Yasuzumi (三神安角). He is said to be the first person to reach the top of Mount Haku in neighboring Kaga Province and other peaks in the Ryōhaku Mountains.[1]

Opened mountains

Taichō is said to be the first to have climbed the following mountains:

Mount Haku
Mount Ochizen (越智山)
Mount Bessan



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Jim Kwik



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