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April 11, 2009 sat
April 11th, 2009

Quiz: Why is Easter called Easter? Why not Jesus Resurrection Day..?

Yesterday’s question answered below: What was jus primae noctis?
History for 4/11/2009
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Septimius Severus, Frederick the Warlike of Saxony-1370, Ethel Kennedy, Joel Grey, Louise Lasser, Mason Reese, Oleg Cassini, Cameron Mitchell. Norman McClaren, Bill Irwin, John Milius, Jennifer Esposito

1506- Pope Julius II laid the corner stone for the new Saint Peter’s Basilica. It was completed in 1626.

1512-BATTLE OF RAVENNA -The first battle decided by artillery. The armies of Pope Julius II and his Spanish allies are defeated by Duke Alfonso D'Este of Ferrara and his French allies. The D'Este' family were patrons of Leonardo daVinci but this Duke was an artillery buff. For his birthday friends gave him cannons. In true Renaissance fashion during the battle the Duke pulled his guns to the side of the battlefield where he could fire on both sides at once. When someone explained he would be firing on his friends as well the Duke answered:" Well, they'll probably be enemies tomorrow!" Despite this curious strategem, he won anyway.

1713 - FIRST TREATY OF UTRECHT- Ending the War of Spanish Succession. George Frederich Handel premiered the Royal Fireworks Music in celebration. France yields to England the eastern coastal provinces of Canada. When the French speaking inhabitants of Arcadia refuse to swear allegiance to the English King they are driven out of their homes at bayonet point. Scottish colonists are brought in who rename the island Nova Scotia -New Scotland. The French exiles migrate to Louisiana and settle in the swampy bayous. They call themselves Arcadians, which slurs to A'cajun or Cajun.

1854- Depressed by his go-no-where career and drinking heavily, Captain Ulysses Grant resigned from the US Army.

1861-In the dark night outside Fort Sumter in rebel held Charleston Bay, Confederate commissioners call on Major Robert Anderson to lower Old Glory and surrender the fort. The Kentucky born major said he would surrender if after three days he received no food resupply. (a stalling tactic) The Confederates had sighted an approaching Union rescue fleet and knew this answer meant they would have to fire on the fort. Anderson knew it too, for as he said goodbye to the commissioners he added: " And if we don't meet again in this life, I'm sure we'll meet again in the next."...

1890- In England John Merrick, who was known as the Elephant Man, died.

1906- Albert Einstein published his Theory of Relativity.

1907-Baseball N.Y. Giant's Roger Bresnahan becomes the first catcher to wear a mask and shin guards. He had the mask built based on a sword fencers' mask.

1914- George Bernard Shaw’s play Pygmalion premiered at the Haymarket in London.

1931- Dorothy Parker resigned her job as drama critic for the New Yorker Magazine. Mrs Parker was known for her witty but caustic reviews like “Her performance ran the gamut from A to B.” She married an actor named Cambell and moved to Hollywood to become a screenwriter. While on her honeymoon the magazine bugged her for some more fixes on an article. She sent a telegram from Paris:” Don’t bother me. F*cking busy. And visa-versa. “

1933- the Bauhaus directed by Mies Van Der Rohe was closed down by the Nazis.

1945-Concentration camp at Buchenwald liberated. The Nazi guards had already fled and an inmate answered the phone when the Gestapo called. They ordered the camp blown up and the remaining inmates killed. The inmate answered not to worry, that they were already doing that. Then he went out to welcome the American tanks. Among the survivors was Nobel Laureate Ei Weisel, Simon Weisenthal and future leader of Communist East Germany Eric Hoehnegger.

1950- First day filming on the movie All About Eve. As Bette Davis said “Fasten your seatbelts, its going to be a bumpy night.”

1951- When President Truman fired General Douglas MacArthur from his command in Korea a firestorm of protest erupted in Congress. Several leading senators called for the Presidents Impeachment! One California senator stood up and said he was for censure but was against impeachment. His name was Senator Richard M. Nixon.

1955- WABD in New York and KTLA in Los Angeles began running pre-1948 Warner Bros cartoon shorts in a half hour format, introducing the baby boomer generation to the world of Bugs, Daffy and Porky.

1957-Poet Pablo Neruda was arrested by authorities in Buenos Aires.

1968- After the Vietnamese Tet Offensive and President Lyndon Johnson’s announcement that he would not run for another term, Secretary of Defense Clark Clifford announced the US would send no additional ground troops to Vietnam. Even with 450,000 there already the generals wanted an additional 200,000. Congress threatened to cut off funding. The US government began to talk of de-escalation and disengagement, but it took another 5 years to do it.

1970-Apollo 13 blasts off for the moon. Halfway there an explosion will force it to return.

1979- Ugandan dictator Dr. Idi Amin-Dada driven out of power by a Tanzanian invasion. During his reign the mad dictator titled himself "Conqueror of the British Empire" and passed the time trying to wrestle crocodiles, rehearse mock invasions of Israel (a geographic impossibility ) and played drums in his own rock band.

1981- Valerie Bertinelli married rocker Eddie Van Halen.

1983- At that year’s Academy Awards the winner for Best Animated Short was Polish artist Zybigniew Rybcyzinski for his film Tango. During the ceremony he stepped outside for a smoke. When Security guards refused to let him re-enter he became combative, shouting the only English he knew:” I Have Oscar!”. He wound up in jail for assault and his Oscar wound up in the bushes.

2006 Italian police captured the capo-de-capo of the Sicilian Mafia, Salvatore Provenzano near the town of Corleone, the birthplace of Mario Puzo’s fictional Godfather. Don Provenzano had been hiding out for 43 years.
Yesterday’s question: What was jus primae noctis?

Answer: Right of the First Night. Supposedly Medieval lords could claim the right to spend the first night of your wedding having sex with your bride. It is doubtful how wide spread this idea was, or even if it was ever done at all. It was talked about a lot during the French Revolution, as one more reason to hate the aristocrats.