FYI October 12, 13, 14 & 15, 2022

On This Day

633 – Battle of Hatfield Chase: King Edwin of Northumbria is defeated and killed by an alliance under Penda of Mercia and Cadwallon of Gwynedd.[2]
The Battle of Hatfield Chase (Old English: Hæðfeld; Old Welsh: Meigen) was fought on 12 October 633[1] at Hatfield Chase near Doncaster (today part of South Yorkshire, England). It pitted the Northumbrians against an alliance of Gwynedd and Mercia. The Northumbrians were led by Edwin and the Gwynedd-Mercian alliance was led by Cadwallon ap Cadfan and Penda. The site was a marshy area about 8 miles (13 km) northeast of Doncaster on the south bank of the River Don.[dubious – discuss] It was a decisive victory for Gwynedd and the Mercians: Edwin was killed and his army defeated, leading to the temporary collapse of Northumbria.
1269 – The present church building at Westminster Abbey is consecrated.
Westminster Abbey, formally titled the Collegiate Church of Saint Peter at Westminster, is a large, mainly Gothic abbey church in the City of Westminster, London, England, just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. It is one of the United Kingdom’s most notable religious buildings and a burial site for English and, later, British monarchs. Since the coronation of William the Conqueror in 1066, all coronations of English and British monarchs have occurred in Westminster Abbey.[5][6] Sixteen royal weddings have occurred at the abbey since 1100.[7]

According to a tradition first reported by Sulcard in about 1080, a church was founded at the site (then known as Thorney Island) in the seventh century, at the time of Mellitus, Bishop of London. Construction of the present church began in 1245 on the orders of Henry III.[5]

The church was originally part of a Catholic Benedictine abbey, which was dissolved in 1539. It then served as the cathedral of the Diocese of Westminster until 1550, then as a second cathedral of the Diocese of London until 1556. The abbey was restored to the Benedictines by Mary I in 1556, then in 1559 made a royal peculiar—a church responsible directly to the sovereign—by Elizabeth I.

The abbey is the burial site of more than 3,300 people, usually of prominence in British history: at least 16 monarchs, eight prime ministers, poets laureate, actors, scientists, military leaders, and the Unknown Warrior.[8]
1066 – The Norman conquest of England begins with the Battle of Hastings.[1]
The Battle of Hastings[a] was fought on 14 October 1066 between the Norman-French army of William, the Duke of Normandy, and an English army under the Anglo-Saxon King Harold Godwinson, beginning the Norman Conquest of England. It took place approximately 7 mi (11 km) northwest of Hastings, close to the present-day town of Battle, East Sussex, and was a decisive Norman victory.

The background to the battle was the death of the childless King Edward the Confessor in January 1066, which set up a succession struggle between several claimants to his throne. Harold was crowned king shortly after Edward’s death, but faced invasions by William, his own brother Tostig, and the Norwegian King Harald Hardrada (Harold III of Norway). Hardrada and Tostig defeated a hastily gathered army of Englishmen at the Battle of Fulford on 20 September 1066, and were in turn defeated by Harold at the Battle of Stamford Bridge five days later. The deaths of Tostig and Hardrada at Stamford Bridge left William as Harold’s only serious opponent. While Harold and his forces were recovering, William landed his invasion forces in the south of England at Pevensey on 28 September 1066 and established a beachhead for his conquest of the kingdom. Harold was forced to march south swiftly, gathering forces as he went.

The exact numbers present at the battle are unknown as even modern estimates vary considerably. The composition of the forces is clearer: the English army was composed almost entirely of infantry and had few archers, whereas only about half of the invading force was infantry, the rest split equally between cavalry and archers. Harold appears to have tried to surprise William, but scouts found his army and reported its arrival to William, who marched from Hastings to the battlefield to confront Harold. The battle lasted from about 9 am to dusk. Early efforts of the invaders to break the English battle lines had little effect. Therefore, the Normans adopted the tactic of pretending to flee in panic and then turning on their pursuers. Harold’s death, probably near the end of the battle, led to the retreat and defeat of most of his army. After further marching and some skirmishes, William was crowned as king on Christmas Day 1066.

There continued to be rebellions and resistance to William’s rule, but Hastings effectively marked the culmination of William’s conquest of England. Casualty figures are hard to come by, but some historians estimate that 2,000 invaders died along with about twice that number of Englishmen. William founded a monastery at the site of the battle, the high altar of the abbey church supposedly placed at the spot where Harold died.

1211 – Battle of the Rhyndacus: The Latin emperor Henry of Flanders defeats the Nicaean emperor Theodore I Laskaris.[2]
The Battle of the Rhyndacus was fought on 15 October 1211 between the forces of two of the main successor states of the Byzantine Empire, the Latin Empire and the Byzantine Greek Empire of Nicaea, established following the dissolution of the Byzantine state after the Fourth Crusade.

The Latin emperor, Henry of Flanders, desired to expand his territory in Asia Minor at the expense of the Nicaeans. He had already achieved a victory in 1205 at Adramyttium, but the need to counter the Bulgarians in Europe had forced him to conclude a truce and depart. By 1211, only a small exclave around Pegai remained in Latin hands. Taking advantage of the losses suffered by the Nicaean army against the Seljuks in the Battle of Antioch on the Meander, Henry landed with his army at Pegai and marched eastward to the Rhyndacus river. Henry had probably some 260 Frankish knights. Laskaris had a larger force overall, but only a handful of Frankish mercenaries of his own, as they had suffered especially heavily against the Seljuks. Laskaris prepared an ambush at the Rhyndacus, but Henry assaulted his positions and scattered the Nicaean troops in a day-long battle on 15 October. The Latin victory, won reportedly without casualties, was crushing: after the battle Henry marched unopposed through Nicaean lands, reaching south as far as Nymphaion.

Warfare lapsed thereafter, and both sides concluded the Treaty of Nymphaeum, which gave the Latin Empire control of most of Mysia up to the village of Kalamos (modern Gelenbe), which was to be uninhabited and mark the boundary between the two states.


Born On This Day

1008 – Go-Ichijō, emperor of Japan (d. 1036)
Emperor Go-Ichijō (後一条天皇, Go-Ichijō-tennō, October 12, 1008 – May 15, 1036) was the 68th emperor of Japan,[1] according to the traditional order of succession.[2]

Go-Ichijō’s reign spanned the years from 1016 through 1036.[3]

This 11th century sovereign was named after Emperor Ichijō and go- (後), translates literally as “later;” and thus, he is sometimes called the “Later Emperor Ichijō”, or, in some older sources, may be identified as ” Emperor Ichijō, the second.”
1453 – Edward of Westminster, Prince of Wales, son and heir of Henry VI of England (d. 1471)
Edward of Westminster (13 October 1453 – 4 May 1471), also known as Edward of Lancaster, was the only son of King Henry VI of England and Margaret of Anjou. He was killed aged seventeen at the Battle of Tewkesbury.
1257 – Przemysł II of Poland (d. 1296)[16]
Przemysł II (Polish: [ˈpʂɛmɨsw] (listen) also given in English and Latin as Premyslas or Premislaus or in Polish as Przemysław; 14 October 1257 – 8 February 1296) was the Duke of Poznań from 1257[1]–1279, of Greater Poland from 1279 to 1296, of Kraków from 1290 to 1291,[2] and Gdańsk Pomerania (Pomerelia) from 1294 to 1296, and then King of Poland from 1295 until his death. After a long period of Polish high dukes and two nominal kings, he was the first to obtain the hereditary title of king, and thus to return Poland to the rank of kingdom.[3] A member of the Greater Poland branch of the House of Piast as the only son of Duke Przemysł I and the Silesian princess Elisabeth, he was born posthumously;[3] for this reason he was brought up at the court of his uncle Bolesław the Pious and received his own district to rule, the Duchy of Poznań in 1273. Six years later, after the death of his uncle, he also obtained the Duchy of Kalisz.[4]

In the first period of his government, Przemysł II was involved only in regional affairs, first in close collaboration and then competing with the Duke of Wrocław, Henryk IV Probus.[5] This policy caused the rebellion of the prominent Zaremba family and the temporary loss of Wieluń.[6] Working with the Archbishop of Gniezno, Jakub Świnka, he sought the unification of the principalities of the Piast dynasty.[7] Unexpectedly, in 1290, under the will of Henryk IV Probus, he managed to obtain the Duchy of Kraków[8] and with this the title of High Duke of Poland; however, not having sufficient support from the local nobility (who supported another member of the Piast dynasty, Władysław I the Elbow-high) and faced with the increasing threats of King Wenceslaus II of Bohemia, Przemysł II finally decided to retreat from Lesser Poland,[9] which was then under the rule of Přemyslid dynasty.[10]

In 1293, thanks to the mediation of Archbishop Jakub Świnka, he joined into a close alliance with the Kuyavian princes Władysław the Elbow-high and Casimir II of Łęczyca.[11] This alliance was anti-Bohemian, and his goal was to recover Kraków, then in the hands of King Wenceslaus II.

After the death of Duke Mestwin II in 1294, and according to the Treaty of Kępno[12] signed in 1282, Przemysł II inherited Pomerelia. This strengthened his position and enabled his coronation as King of Poland.[13] The ceremony was held on 26 June 1295 in Gniezno, and was performed by his ally Archbishop Jakub Świnka.[14] Only nine months later, on 8 February 1296, Przemysł II was murdered during a failed kidnapping attempt made by men of the Margraves of Brandenburg, with some help from the Polish noble families of Nałęcz and Zaremba.[9][15]


99 BC (probable)[13] – Lucretius, Roman poet and philosopher (d. 55 BCE)
Titus Lucretius Carus (/ˈtaɪtəs luːˈkriːʃəs/ TY-təs loo-KREE-shəs, Latin: [ˈtɪ.tʊz lʊˈkreː.tɪ.ʊs ˈkaː.rʊs]; c. 99 – c. 55 BC) was a Roman poet and philosopher. His only known work is the philosophical poem De rerum natura, a didactic work about the tenets and philosophy of Epicureanism, and which usually is translated into English as On the Nature of Things and somewhat less often as On the nature of the universe. Lucretius has been credited with originating the concept of the three-age system that was formalised in 1836 by C. J. Thomsen.

Very little is known about Lucretius’s life; the only certainty is that he was either a friend or client of Gaius Memmius, to whom the poem was addressed and dedicated.[2]

De rerum natura was a considerable influence on the Augustan poets, particularly Virgil (in his Aeneid and Georgics, and to a lesser extent on the Eclogues) and Horace.[3] The work was almost lost during the Middle Ages, but was rediscovered in 1417 in a monastery in Germany[4] by Poggio Bracciolini and it played an important role both in the development of atomism (Lucretius was an important influence on Pierre Gassendi)[5] and the efforts of various figures of the Enlightenment era to construct a new Christian humanism. Lucretius’s scientific poem On the Nature of Things (c. 60 BC) has a remarkable description of Brownian motion of dust particles in verses 113–140 from Book II. He uses this as a proof of the existence of atoms.[6]




NASA: Astronomy Picture of the Day

By Helen Bushby and Steven McIntosh, BBC News: Robbie Coltrane: Harry Potter actor dies aged 72
Anthony Robert McMillan OBE (30 March 1950 – 14 October 2022), known professionally as Robbie Coltrane, was a Scottish actor and comedian. He gained worldwide recognition as Rubeus Hagrid in the Harry Potter film series (2001–2011), and as Valentin Dmitrovich Zukovsky in the James Bond films GoldenEye (1995) and The World Is Not Enough (1999). He was appointed an OBE in the 2006 New Year Honours by Queen Elizabeth II for his services to drama. In 1990, Coltrane received the Evening Standard British Film Award – Peter Sellers Award for Comedy. In 2011, he was honoured for his “outstanding contribution” to film at the British Academy Scotland Awards.

Coltrane started his career appearing alongside Hugh Laurie, Stephen Fry, and Emma Thompson in the sketch series Alfresco (1983–1984). In 1987, he starred in the BBC miniseries Tutti Frutti alongside Thompson, for which he received his first British Academy Television Award for Best Actor nomination. Coltrane then gained national prominence starring as criminal psychologist Dr. Eddie “Fitz” Fitzgerald in the ITV television series Cracker (1993–2006), a role which saw him receive the British Academy Television Award for Best Actor in three consecutive years (1994 to 1996). In 2006, Coltrane came eleventh in ITV’s poll of TV’s 50 Greatest Stars, voted by the public.[1] In 2016 he starred in the four-part Channel 4 series National Treasure alongside Julie Walters, a role for which he received a British Academy Television Award nomination.

Coltrane appeared in two films for George Harrison’s Handmade Films: the Neil Jordan neo-noir Mona Lisa (1986) with Bob Hoskins, and Nuns on the Run with Eric Idle. He also appeared in Kenneth Branagh’s Shakespeare adaptation Henry V (1989), the comedy Let It Ride (1989), Roald Dahl’s Danny, the Champion of the World (1989), Steven Soderbergh’s crime-comedy thriller Ocean’s Twelve (2004), Rian Johnson’s caper film The Brothers Bloom (2008), Mike Newell’s Dickens film adaptation Great Expectations (2012), and Emma Thompson’s biographical film Effie Gray (2014). He was also known for his voice performances in the animated films The Tale of Despereaux (2008), and Pixar’s Brave (2012).


By Ian Millhiser, Vox: A new Supreme Court case could fundamentally change the internet Gonzalez v. Google is a high-stakes case about what we actually see when we go online.

By Angely Mercado, Popular Science: 4 Reasons to Let Your Lawn Grow Wild A beautiful lawn doesn’t have to be plain.
By Olga Mecking, BBC Travel: The Polish Phrase That Will Help You Through Tough Times In Poland, the concept of ‘Jakoś to będzie’ is acting without worrying about the consequences. It’s reaching for the impossible. It’s taking risks, and not being afraid.

By Rachel Treisman, Estefania Mitre, NPR: See the buzzworthy winners of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition


By Gary Baum, The Hollywood Reporter: Better Call Brad: Hollywood’s Secret Problem Solver Speaks With a client list that has included Frank Sinatra and Tom Cruise, Brad Herman has smoothed out difficulties for Tinseltown’s elite for more than 40 years. Just don’t call him a fixer.

By Jelisa Castrodale, Food & Wine: California Man Files Lawsuit After Noticing that Texas Pete Hot Sauce Isn’t Made in Texas The brand’s own website talks about its roots in North Carolina.

Are phone booths making a comeback?
By Sarah Perez, Tech Crunch: Google’s 3D video calling booths, Project Starline, will now be tested in the real world

By Caitlin O’Kane, CBS News: World Four women have been selected to run the post office in Antarctica and count penguins

By Rachel Treisman, NPR: Which Indigenous lands are you on? This map will show you


Watching My Friend Pretend Her Heart Isn’t Breaking
by Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer, syndicated from, Jul 17, 2022

On Earth, just a teaspoon of neutron star
would weigh six billion tons. Six billion tons
equals the collective weight of every animal
on earth. Including the insects. Times three.

Six billion tons sounds impossible
until I consider how it is to swallow grief—
just a teaspoon and one might as well have consumed
a neutron star. How dense it is,
how it carries inside it the memory of collapse.
How difficult it is to move then.
How impossible to believe that anything
could lift that weight.

There are many reasons to treat each other
with great tenderness. One is
the sheer miracle that we are here together
on a planet surrounded by dying stars.

One is that we cannot see what
anyone else has swallowed.
The History Guy: The Illuminating History of the Jack-o-Lantern
FOX 13 Tampa Bay: Full press conference: Sheriff Grady Judd gives update on deputy who was shot

Queen – Face It Alone (Official Lyric Video)


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