Sunday, April 11, 2010

POPnews - April 11th

[Architect Adolf Leonard van Gendt found his inspiration for the Concertgebouw in Leipzig's Neue Gewandhaus, which was later destroyed during World War II; located in the Amsterdam suburb of Amstelveen - and built on some 2,186 twelve to thirteen meter (forty to forty-three foot) long pilings - the Concertgebouw is considered to have some of the best acoustics in the world.]

491 CE - Flavius Anastasius became Byzantine Emperor, with the name of Anastasius I, following the death of Zeno.

1079 - Stanislaus, Bishop of Krakow, was executed by order of Poland's Duke Bolesław II. Maybe. Then again, it might have been on May 8th. Anyway, for his trouble he would be canonized by Pope Innocent IV in September 1253.

1241 - Mongolian warlord and founder of the Blue Horde, Batu Khan defeated Hungary's Béla IV at the Battle of Muhi.

1689 - William III and Mary II were crowned as joint sovereigns of Great Britain; in order to accommodate the unprecedented arrangement special coronation regalia was made, including two pieces now known as the Queen's Orb and Sceptre.

1814 - The Treaty of Fontainebleau ended the War of the Sixth Coalition against Napoleon Bonaparte, forcing him to abdicate unconditionally for the first time.

1828 - The Argentinian city of Bahia Blanca was established as a fortress by Ramón Estomba upon the orders of Juan Manuel de Rosas, governor of Buenos Aires.

1865 - President Abraham Lincoln made his last public speech, at the gates of the White House, during which he spoke in favour of black suffrage. In the modestly-sized crowd that day was a certain John Wilkes Booth, whose reaction to Lincoln's announcement was to reverberate for generations... 'That is the last speech he will ever give,' he said, to his companion Lewis Powell, as they walked away.

1888 - Amsterdam's Concertgebouw was inaugurated with a concert in which an orchestra of 120 musicians and a chorus of 500 singers participated, performing works of Wagner, Handel, Bach, and Beethoven.

1919 - The International Labour Organization was founded.

Photobucket1951 - The Stone of Scone - the stone upon which Scottish monarchs were (and British monarchs since Edward II in February 1308 have been) traditionally crowned - was found on the site of the altar of Arbroath Abbey; it had been taken from within St. Edward's Chair in Westminster Abbey in December 1950 by four Scottish nationalist students (Ian Hamilton, Gavin Vernon, Kay Matheson and Alan Stuart) who also damaged it in the pilfering, whereupon it was repaired by Glasgow stonemason Robert Gray and returned to London.

That's the chair there, with the Stone of Scone safely thereunder ensconced; of course, since November 1996 the Stone has actually resided at Edinburgh Castle.

* * *

1955 - Air India's Kashmir Princess crashed as a result of a bomb blast in a failed assassination attempt on Zhou Enlai by the Kuomintang; while it has always been explained that the Chinese Premier missed the flight due to an emercency appendectomy, recent intelligence indicates he may have been aware of the plot and sacrificed those on board for some reason known only to him. In all sixteen passengers and crew died in the crash - including seven journalists and Raymond Wong, the Hong Kong branch director of Xinhua News Agency - while three survived.

1961 - The war crimes trial of Adolf Eichmann began, in Jerusalem.

1965 - During the Palm Sunday tornado outbreak fifty-one tornadoes touched down in six Midwestern states, killing 256 people.

1968 - US President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1968, prohibiting discrimination in the sale, rental, and financing of housing.

1970 - Apollo 13 was launched.

1979 - Ugandan dictator Idi Amin was deposed.

1987 - The London Agreement was secretly signed between Israeli Foreign Affairs Minister Shimon Peres and Jordan's King Hussein.

2002 - An attempted coup d'état aimed at toppling Venezuela's President Hugo Chávez began.

2007 - A pair of bombings in the Algerian capital of Algiers killed 33 people and wounded 222 others.

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