Floralia: the festival in ancient Rome in honor of the goddess Flora

The Floralia was a festival in ancient Rome in honor of the goddess Flora, held April 27 during the Republican era, or April 28 in the Julian calendar. The festival included Ludi Florae, the “Games of Flora” which lasted for six days under the empire. The festival had a licentious, pleasure-seeking atmosphere and, in contrast to many festivals which had a patrician character, the games of Flora were plebeian in nature. The holiday for Flora (as officially determined by Julius Caesar when he fixed the Roman calendar) ran from April…

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Pink Moon, Planter’s Moon, Seed Moon..or April’s Full Wind Moon

Once someone said…a full Moon in April brings frost. If the full Moon rises pale, expect rain. Well. It’s April, and about halfway through the month, the thunderstorms of March are beginning to subside, and the wind picks up. Seeds are being blown about on the breezes, spreading life all around from one place to another and, not by chance, this lunar cycle is often known as the Seed Moon. Trees have buds, spring daffodils and tulips abound, and the birds are nesting once more. Just like March, this is…

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The Roman festival of Robigalia

Robigalia were the feasts dedicated to the god Rubigus so that the wheat did not ripen too early, exposing it to the attack of the fungus that caused the so-called “robigine”, that is the “rust of the wheat”, a devastating disease for crops. During the Robigalia, which were held from 25 to 28 April, the Romans prayed to the god and made various offerings to him so that she would protect the wheat from disease and make the crops abundant. Its main ritual was a dog sacrifice to protect grain…

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Fordicidia: Springtime Festival To Tellus in ancient Rome

On the Roman religious calendar, the month of April (Aprilis) was in general dedicated to deities who were female or ambiguous in gender, opening with the Feast of Venus on the Kalends. With celebration of Fordicidia on this day, April 15, all those purifying and propitiatory festivities that characterized the month were launched: the Parilia, a feast of shepherds, on April 21, the Robigalia on April 25, to protect crops from blight, and the Vinalia, one of the two wine festivals on the calendar, at the end of the month.…

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The dark story of the Little Mermaid you wouldn’t imagine

“But a mermaid has no tears, and therefore she suffers so much more.” 🧜‍♀️ The tale of The Little Mermaid is one of the favourite for many people worldwide, but well do you know the original story and its darker ending? ‘The Little Mermaid’ was originally published on this day, April 7 1837, in Hans Christian Andersen’s first collection of “Fairy Tales Told for Children”. Andersen was a Danish author, born in Odense, on the 2nd of April 1805. He had a difficult start in life, being born to poor…

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#TodayInHistory – April 30

April 30 – Some important events on this day 311 👉🏼 Roman Emperor Galerius issues Edict of Toleration, ending persercution of Christians in the Roman Empire 711 👉🏼 Islamic conquest of Iberia: Moorish troops led by Tariq ibn-Ziyad land at Gibraltar to begin their invasion of the Iberian Peninsula (Al-Andalus) 1349 👉🏼 Jewish community of Radolfzell, Germany, exterminated 1492 👉🏼 Christopher Columbus is given royal commission by Spanish monarchs Isabella I and Ferdinand II to equip his fleet to the New World 1562 👉🏼 1st French colonists in North America:…

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William Randolph Hearst: the “father” of fake news!

“Fake news”, very popular and read also on current days, expecially on social networkd and in a large number in this period of pandemic, has its roots, many people believe, in a man named William Randolph Hearst, born on this day, April 29, 1863. He was given the San Francisco Examiner by his father, George, a miner who had become a multi-millionaire and US Senator. Thus, relishing his role as an influential editor, the young Hearst later moved to New York City where acquired the New York Journal. As he…

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#TodayInHistory – April 29

April 29 – Some important events on this day 1429 👉🏼 Joan of Arc arrives at the siege of Orleans 1522 👉🏼 Emperor Charles V names Frans van Holly inquisitor-general of Netherlands. 1623 👉🏼 11 Dutch ships depart for the conquest of Peru 🇵🇪 1701 👉🏼 Drenthe, Netherlands, adopts Gregorian calendar 📆 1769 👉🏼 Scottish engineer James Watt’s patent for a steam engine with a separate condenser enrolled (Patent 913). 1834 👉🏼 Charles Darwin’s expedition sees the top of the Andes Mountains from Patagonia 1852 👉🏼 1st edition of Peter…

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#TodayInHistory – April 28

April 28 – Some important events on this day 1253 👉🏼 Nichiren, a Japanese Buddhist monk, propounds Nam Myoho Renge Kyo for the first time and declares it to be the essence of Buddhism, in effect founding Nichiren Buddhism. 1550 👉🏼 Powers of Dutch inquisition extends 🇳🇱 1611 👉🏼 Establishment of the Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas, The Catholic University of the Philippines, oldest existing university in Asia and largest Catholic university in the world. 1639 👉🏼 After the Great Plague of London broke out in 1665, 100,000…

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#TodayInHistory – April 27

April 27 – Some important events on this day 4977 B.C. 👉🏼 Universe is created, according to German mathematician and astronomer Johannes Kepler. In any case, as for his calculation about the universe’s birthday, scientists in the 20th century developed the Big Bang theory, which showed that his calculations were off by about 13.7 billion years. 🌎 1509 👉🏼 Pope Julius II excommunicates Italian state of Venice 1521 👉🏼 Navigator Ferdinand Magellan killed in the Philippines. After traveling three-quarters of the way around the globe, Portuguese navigator is killed during…

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#TodayInHistory – April 26

April 26 – Some important events on this day 1467 👉🏼 The miraculous image in Our Lady of Good Counsel appear in Genazzano, Italy 🇮🇹 1478 👉🏼 Pazzi conspirators attack Lorenzo de’Medici and kill Giuliano de’Medici in Florence 1514 👉🏼 Nicolaus Copernicus makes his 1st observations of Saturn 🪐 1564 👉🏼 William Shakespeare is baptized in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, England 1654 👉🏼 Jews are expelled from Brazil 🇧🇷 1677 👉🏼 Emperor Leopold I forms University of Innsbruck 🇦🇹 1755 👉🏼 1st Russian university opens in Moscow 1803 👉🏼 Meteorites fall in…

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#April 25, 1983: Konrad Kujau and his faked Hitler diaries

“Hitler’s Diaries Discovered!” screamed enthusiast the front page of the German magazine Stern on this day while, more conservatively, the Sunday Times in London, which had agreed to pay paid Stern £600,000 to share in the glory of this stunning story, offered its readers a “world exclusive” on “The Secrets of Hitler’s War.” But, in order: German journalist Gerd Heinemann had told Stern that 62 volumes of diaries written by the Führer between 1932 and 1945 had been recovered from a plane crash in East Germany at the end of…

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#TodayInHistory – April 25

April 25 – Some important events on this day 1507 👉🏼 German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller first to use the name America on his world map “Universalis Cosmographia” 🗺 1644 👉🏼 Last Ming Emperor Chongzhen hangs himself from a tree on Jing Mountain, Beijing, rather than be captured by forces of Li Zicheng. Chongzhen was the 16th and last emperor of the Ming Dynasty in China, reigning from 1627-44. He inherited a failing empire and though he tried to stem corruption and rebellions throughout his reign, he was ultimately unable to…

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#TodayInHistory – April 24

April 24 – Some important events on this day 1479 BC 👉🏼 Thutmose III ascends to the throne of Egypt, although power effectively shifts to Hatshepsut (according to the Low Chronology of the 18th Dynasty) 1184 BC 👉🏼 The Greeks enter Troy using the Trojan Horse (traditional date) 1066 👉🏼 Halley’s Comet sparks English monk to predict country will be destroyed 1704 👉🏼 “Boston News-Letter” 1st successful newspaper in US, forms 1800 👉🏼 Library of Congress established. President John Adams approves legislation to appropriate $5,000 to purchase “such books as…

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Quarantine in Milan: here’s what it’s like in a coronavirus red zone.

First Easter and Easter Monday. Then, Italy’s Liberation Day on April 25, a national Italian holiday commemorating the end of Nazi occupation during World War II and the victory of the Resistance in Italy, and May 1, international workers’ day. In any case, the “quarantine” in Milan and not only, facing the Coronavirus emergency, continues. The emergency has imposed restrictions all over Italy and, as a result, the cities have completely emptied. These are the squares and streets of Milan on a day in the midst of Covid-19 pandemic. Deserted…

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#TodayInHistory – April 23

April 23 – Some important events on this day 215 BC 👉🏼 A temple, built on the Capitoline Hill, is dedicated to Venus Erycina to commemorate the Roman defeat at Lake Trasimene 1014 👉🏼 King Brian Boru of Ireland defeats Viking forces at Battle of Clontarf, freeing Ireland from foreign control 1516 👉🏼 Duke Wilhelm IV of Bavaria endorses “The German Beer Purity Law” (Reinheitsgebot) and adds to it standards for the sale of beer. Translation of Reinheitsgebot from the “History of German Brewing” by Karl J. Eden: “We hereby…

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#TodayInHistory – April 22

April 22 – Some important events on this day 1500 👉🏼 Pedro Álvares Cabral is the first european to discover Brazil, landing near Monte Pascoal, claims it for Portugal. Pedro Álvares Cabral was chosen by the Portuguese crown to lead a major expedition to India in 1500. A fleet of 13 ships and an estimated 1500 men left Portugal to follow in the footsteps of Vasco da Gama’s earlier expedition in search of new trade routes. It is still unclear today whether Cabral’s journey into the west Atlantic was deliberate…

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#April 21, 753 BC: according to tradition, Romulus and Remus found Rome

According to tradition, on April 21, 753 B.C., Romulus and his twin brother, Remus, found Rome on the site where they were suckled by a she-wolf as orphaned infants. Actually, this myth originated sometime in the fourth century B.C., and the exact date of Rome’s founding was symbolically set by the Roman scholar Marcus Terentius Varro in the first century B.C. , but the legendary story of the ancient city is know still today all over the world. According to the legend, Romulus and Remus were the sons of Rhea…

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#TodayInHistory – April 21

April 21 – Some important events on this day 753 BC 👉🏼 Romulus and Remus found Rome (traditional date) ✔️ READ THE ARTICLE! 1526 👉🏼 First Battle of Panipat: Central Asian conqueror Babur defeats Sultan Ibrahim Lodi, establishing the Mughal Empire in India. The Mughal forces led by their commander Babur defeated the forces of the Delhi sultanate, destroying its influence in northern India and marking the beginnings of the Mughal Empire. Babur’s army was vastly outnumbered, an estimated 10,000 of his men faced off against 100,000 of Lodi’s and…

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#April 20, 1887: in Paris, world’s first motor race!

Historic records show that on this day, April 29, 1887, Georges Bouton “won the world’s first motor race”. But it was a hollow victory and there was no champagne celebration. The reason? Bouton and his co-driver were the only ones taking part. And, to be exact, it wasn’t even a car, but a steam-powered quadricycle. The curious event was a test organised by the newspaper “Le Velocipede” to see if Bouton’s machine, which had boasted speeds of 60kmph, could make the 29-kilometre distance between Neuilly Bridge in Paris and the…

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#TodayInHistory – April 19

April 19 – Some important events on this day 607 👉🏼 Comet 1P/607 H1 (Halley) approaches within 0.0898 AUs of Earth ☄️ 1770 👉🏼 British explorer Captain James Cook first sights Australia 🇦🇺 1775 👉🏼 American Revolution begins in Lexington, Massachusetts. The “Shot Heard Round the World” took place in Concord later that day. The American Revolutionary War began on this day with a battle between British soldiers and American revolutionaries at Concord and Lexington in Massachusetts. The first shot of the war – the so-called “shot heard ’round the…

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#April 18, 1480: wicked or sinless? The controversy life of Lucrezia Borgia, born on this day.

Lucrezia Borgia, the illegitimate daughter of Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia (who was to become Pope Alexander VI) was born on this day, April 18 1480. Her mother, the cardinal’s lover, was also the mother of her two older brothers, Cesare and Giovanni. This was the time of the Italian Renaissance when important figures such as Leonardo da Vinci and other artists, architects, and scientists rose to world fame and appreciation. By contrast, the power-hungry Borgia clan became known as evil, violent and politically corrupt, and their aim was to control as…

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#TodayInHistory – April 18

April 18 – Some important events on this day 1025 👉🏼 Bolesław Chrobry is crowned in Gniezno, becoming the first King of Poland 🇵🇱 1480 👉🏼 Lucrezia Borgia, the illegitimate daughter of Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia – who was to become Pope Alexander VI – was born on this day. ✔️ READ THE ARTICLE! 1506 👉🏼 The cornerstone of the current St. Peter’s Basilica is laid in the Vatican by Pope Julius II. Regarded as one of the greatest Renaissance and Baroque buildings, St Peter’s replacing an earlier basilica. It was…

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#April 17, 1969: Alexander Dubček, architect of Czechoslovakia’s Prague Spring, resigns

Alexander Dubček, the communist leader who launched a broad program of liberal reforms in Czechoslovakia, is forced to resign on this day, April 17 1969, as first secretary by the Soviet forces occupying his country. The staunchly pro-Soviet Gustav Husak was appointed Czechoslovak leader in his place, reestablishing an authoritarian communist dictatorship in the Soviet satellite state. The trend toward liberalization in Czechoslovakia began in 1963, and in 1968 reached its apex after Dubcek replaced Antonin Novotny as first secretary of the party. He introduced a series of far-reaching political…

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#TodayInHistory – April 17

April 17 – Some important events on this day 1387 👉🏼 Geoffrey Chaucer’s “Canterbury Tales” characters begin their pilgrimage to Canterbury (according to scholars). Best known today for “The Canterbury Tales”, Geoffrey Chaucer is considered the Father of English literature. His work helped legitimize English as a literary language and supplant literary works in Latin and French where were popular in England at the time. His other significant works include “The Book of the Duchess”, “The House of Fame”, “The Legend of Good Women” and “Troilus and Criseyde”. Born in…

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#April 16, 1850: Madame Tussaud’s dies on this day. Her bloody background

Anna Maria “Marie” Tussaud, the woman behind one of London’s most famous tourist attractions, died on this day, April 16 1850, at the age of 89. She had spent a lifetime creating lifelike waxworks of the famous and the infamous, from murderers to monarchs, from pop stars to politicians, from the beautiful to the odd. The seeds of her curious destiny were sewn two months before she was born at Strasbourg in 1761 when her father, a German soldier, was killed in battle. His death forced his young widow to…

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#TodayInHistory – April 16

April 16 – Some important events on this day 1457 BC 👉🏼 Battle of Megiddo: Egyptian forces of Thutmose III defeat a large Canaanite coalition under King of Kadesh. First battle recorded with a reliable account. The first detailed battle account to have ever survived, it was carved into the walls of the Temple to Amun-Re at Karnak by military scribe Tjaneni. The battle occurred in the Levant, an area controlled by the Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmose III, who was facing a revolt led by the King of Kadesh. The Egyptians…

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#April 15, 1912: An Iceberg sinks “unsinkable” Titanic

All we know that, on her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York, the passenger liner Titanic hit an iceberg and sank on this day, resulting in the world’s worst peacetime shipping disaster. Just five days earlier the toweringly impressive ship — eleven storeys high, a sixth of a mile long and weighing 46,328 gross tons — slipped her moorings at Southampton to the cheers of enthusiast crowds. She was the pride of the White Star Line, the biggest ship the world had seen, and certainly the best. For a…

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#TodayInHistory – April 15

April 15 – Some important events on this day 1450 👉🏼 French defeat English at Battle of Formigny in 100 Years’ War 1755 👉🏼 Samuel Johnson’s “A Dictionary of the English Language” published in London. He was one of the most prominent literary figures of the eighteenth century, and his greatest work was his “Dictionary of the English Language”. Commissioned by a group of publishers, the task took Johnson nine years and was eventually published on this day. Although not the first English dictionary it proved to be the most…

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#TodayInHistory – April 14

April 14 – Some important events on this day 43 BC 👉🏼 Battle of Forum Gallorum: Mark Antony, besieging Julius Caesar’s assassin Decimus Junius Brutus in Mutina, defeats the forces of the consul Pansa, who is killed. By the time of his assassination on 15 March (the Ides of March) 44BC, Julius Caesar was at the height of his power, having recently been declared dictator perpetuo by the Roman Senate. This kind of power made many senators nervous that Caesar would overthrow the senate and establish one-man tyranny. Thus they…

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