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Events, deaths, births, of 23 MAY
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^  On a 23 May:
^ 2001 US towns with the highest priced homes.
      According to Worth magazine, the US town with the most expensive sold homes (median price $4 million) is Jupiter Island, Florida, 27º02'34"N, 80º06'35"W (1990 population: 601), 141 km north of Miami. The next nine towns with high-priced homes (in millions of dollars) are listed as: 2. Atherton, CA $2.7 — 3. Aspen, CO $2.3 — 4. Los Altos Hills, CA $2.1 — 5. Belvedere, CA $1.8 — 6. Sea Island, GA $1.8 — 7. Hillsborough, CA $1.8 — 8. Snowmass Village, CO $1.8 — 9. Mountain Village, CO $1.7 — 10. Rolling Hills, CA $1.6.
     25 US States are not on the list of 250 towns. Those that are, with the number of towns listed, are:
CA 81 — NY 52 — NJ 19 — IL 15 — FL 14 — MA 13 — CT 11 — CO 6 — PA 6 — TX 5 — WA 5 — OH 4 — MO 3 — HI 2 — KY 2 — MI 2 — VA 2 — AZ 1 — GA 1 — KS 1 — MD 1 — NC 1 — NH 1 — NV 1 — SC 1.
     As could be expected the towns with the highest median home price are also the least populated. Jupiter Island is the least populated of the 250 towns. There is no town with a median home price above $1 million with more population than the 36'504 of Greenwich CT (median home $1'485'000). The most populated town, by far, on the list is Huntington Beach CA (199'618, median home $560'000), which must also be, among the 250, the town with the highest total value of all homes.
^ 2000 US towns with the highest priced homes.
      According to Worth magazine, the US town with the most expensive sold homes (median price $1.9 million) is Jupiter Island, Florida, 27º02'34"N, 80º06'35"W (population: 601), 141 km north of Miami. The next nine towns with high-priced homes (in millions of dollars) are listed as: 2 Aspen CO $1.8 — 3 Atherton CA $1.7 — 4 Belvedere CA $1.5 — 5 Rolling Hills CA $1.4 — 6 Hillsborough CA $1.4 — 7 Los Altos Hills CA $1.3 — 8 Mountain Village CO $1.3 — 9 Rancho Santa Fe CA $1.3 — 10 Snowmass Village CO $1.3.
     As could be expected the towns with the highest median home price are also the least populated. Jupiter Island is the least populated of the 250 towns. There is no town with a median home price above $1 million with more population than the 36'504 of Greenwich CT (median home $1'130'000). The most populated town on the list is Sunnyvale CA (117'227, median home $422'000).
^ 1999 US towns with the highest priced homes.
      According to Worth magazine, the US town with the most expensive sold homes (median price $1.7 million) is Jupiter Island, Florida, 27º02'34"N, 80º06'35"W (population: 601), 141 km north of Miami. The next nine towns with high-priced homes (in millions of dollars) are listed as: 2 Aspen CO $1.6 — 3 Atherton CA $1.5 — 4 Hillsborough CA $1.3 — 5 Belvedere CA $1.2 — 6 Mountain Village CO $1.2 — 7 Rolling Hills CA $1.2 — 8 Snowmass Village CO $1.1 — 9 Los Altos Hills CA $1.1 — 10 Rancho Santa Fe CA $1.1
     As could be expected the towns with the highest median home price are generally also the least populated. Jupiter Island is the least populated of the 250 towns. There is no town with a median home price above $800'000 with more population than the 36'504 of Greenwich CT (median home $825'000). The most populated town on the list is Sunnyvale CA (117'227, median home $381'000).
^ 1998 US towns with the highest priced homes.
      According to Worth magazine, the US town with the most expensive sold homes (median price $1.5 million) is Aspen, Colorado, : 39º11'40"N 106º49'37"W (population: 5049). The next nine towns with high-priced homes (in millions of dollars) are listed as: 2 Jupiter Island FL $1.2 3 Rolling Hills CA $1.2 — 4 Atherton CA $1.2 — 5 Matinecock NY $1.1 — 6 Hillsborough CA $1.0 — 7 Belvedere CA $1.0 — 8 Rancho Santa Fe CA $1.0 — 9 Los Altos Hills CA $1.0 — 10 Snowmass Village CO $1.0.
     As could be expected the towns with the highest median home price generally are also the least populated. Jupiter Island (population 601) is the least populated of the 250 towns; Aspen, 136th, is an exception. There is no town with a median home price above $600'000 with more population than the 36'504 of Greenwich CT (median home $651'000). The most populated town on the list is Sunnyvale CA (117'227, median home $332'000).
1998 Official returns showed two convincing "yes" votes for the Northern Ireland peace accord in British-linked Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
1997 Mohammed Khatami, a "moderate" who favors improved economic ties with the West, is elected president of Iran. But his power is less than that of the fundamentalist ayatollahs.
1996 The US House of Representatives votes 281-144 to raise the minimum wage by 90 cents an hour.
1995 Apple Computer and AT&T announce that they will collaborate on a videoconferencing system. Video conferencing was slow to catch on until the late 1990s when it became popular as a business tool.
^ 1994 Prodigy service via cable television.
      Prodigy Services announces a deal with Media General Cable to provide Prodigy access via cable television wires to 200'000 subscribers in Fairfax County, Virginia. Prodigy expected the cable hookup to provide faster speed and enable flashier graphics. At the time, most Prodigy users logged on to the system via 9600-baud modems. Over the next four years, modem speed would increase dramatically, but interest in cable modems would grow as companies like AtHome worked with local cable providers to offer higher-speed bandwidth.
1994 Four men convicted in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center are each sentenced to 240 years in prison.
1993 Primeras elecciones libres en Camboya despues de trece años de guerra civil.
1993 A jury in Baton Rouge, La., acquitted a man who said he was defending his home against what he thought was an intruder when he shot and killed 16-year-old Japanese exchange student Yoshihiro Hattori.
1991 In a 5-4 vote, the US Supreme Court upheld regulations barring federally subsidized family planning clinics from discussing abortion with pregnant women, or from telling women where they could get abortions.
1991 El escritor Manuel Vázquez Montalbán gana el Premio Nacional de Narrativa con su novela Galíndez.
1990 Dow Jones avg hits a record 2856.26
1988 Maryland Gov. Donald Schaefer signn the first law in the US banning the manufacture and sale of cheap handguns, known as "Saturday Night Specials."
1986 El escritor peruano Mario Vargas Llosa recibe el Premio Príncipe de Asturias de las Letras.
1980 La ciudad de Vitoria es designada capital de la comunidad vasca por el Parlamento de Euskadi.
1979 Karl Carstens, cristianodemócrata, sustituye al liberal Walter Scheel en la presidencia de la RFA.
1972 US widens aerial campaign in Vietnam
      Heavy US air attacks that began with an order by President Richard Nixon on May 8 are widened to include more industrial and non-military sites. In 190 strikes, the United States lost one plane but shot down four. The new strikes were part of the ongoing Operation Linebacker, an effort launched in response to the massive North Vietnamese invasion of South Vietnam on March 30. The purpose of the raids were to interdict supplies from outside sources and the movement of equipment and supplies to the North Vietnamese troops in South Vietnam. The strikes concentrated on rail lines around Hanoi and Haiphong, bridges, pipelines, power plants, troops and troop training facilities, and rail lines to China.
1971 North Vietnamese demolition experts infiltrate the major US air base at Cam Ranh Bay, blowing up six tanks of aviation fuel, which resulted in the loss of about 1.5 million gallons. US commander Creighton Abrams criticized the inadequate security.
^ 1967 US Congressman claims M-16 rifle is defective.
      A public controversy over the M-16, the basic combat rifle in Vietnam, begins after Representative James J. Howard (D-New Jersey) reads a letter to the House of Representatives in which a Marine in Vietnam claims that almost all Americans killed in the battle for Hill 881 died as a result of their new M-16 rifles jamming. The Defense Department acknowledged on August 28 that there had been a "serious increase in frequency of malfunctions in the M-16." The M-16 had become the standard US infantry rifle in Vietnam earlier in 1967, replacing the M-14. Almost two pounds lighter and five inches shorter than the M-14, but with the same effective range of over 500 yards, it fired a smaller, lighter 5.56-mm cartridge. The M-16 could be fired fully automatic (like a machine gun) or one shot at a time. Because the M-16 was rushed into mass production, early models were plagued by stoppages that caused some units to request a reissue of the M-14. Technical investigation revealed a variety of causes for the defect, in both the weapon and ammunition design, and in care and cleaning in the field. With these deficiencies corrected, the M-16 became a popular infantry rifle that was able to hold its own against the Soviet-made AK-47 assault rifle used by the enemy.
1962 El ex general Raoul Salan, condenado por un tribunal militar francés a cadena perpetua por el llamado golpe de Estado de los generales de Argelia.
^ 1960 Capture of Nazi Eichmann announced by Israel.
      Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion announces to the world that Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann has been captured and will stand trial in Israel. Eichmann, the Nazi SS officer who organized Adolf Hitler's "final solution of the Jewish question," was seized by Israeli agents in Argentina on May 11 and smuggled to Israel nine days later. Eichmann was born in Solingen, Germany, in 1906. In November 1932, he joined the Nazi's elite SS (Schutzstaffel) organization, whose members came to have broad responsibilities in Nazi Germany, including policing, intelligence, and the enforcement of Adolf Hitler's anti-Semitic policies. Eichmann steadily rose in the SS hierarchy, and with the German annexation of Austria in 1938, he was sent to Vienna with the mission of ridding the city of Jews. He set up an efficient Jewish deportment center and in 1939 was sent to Prague on a similar mission. That year, Eichmann was appointed to the Jewish section of the SS central security office in Berlin. In January 1942, Eichmann met with top Nazi officials at the Wannsee Conference near Berlin for the purpose of planning a "final solution of the Jewish question," as Nazi leader Hermann Göring put it. The Nazis decided to exterminate Europe's Jewish population. Eichmann was appointed to coordinate the identification, assembly, and transportation of millions of Jews from occupied Europe to the Nazi death camps, where Jews were gassed or worked to death. He carried this duty out with horrifying efficiency, and between three to four million Jews perished in the extermination camps before the end of World War II. Close to 2 million were executed elsewhere.
      Following the war, Eichmann was captured by US troops, but he escaped the prison camp in 1946 before having to face the Nuremberg International War Crimes Tribunal. Eichmann traveled under an assumed identity between Europe and the Middle East and in 1950 arrived in Argentina, which maintained lax immigration policies and was a safe haven for many Nazi war criminals. In 1957, a German prosecutor secretly informed Israel that Eichmann was living in Argentina. Agents from Israel's intelligence service, the Mossad, were deployed to Argentina, and in early 1960 they finally located Eichmann. He was living in the San Fernando section of Buenos Aires, under the name Ricardo Klement. In May 1960, Argentina was celebrating the 150th anniversary of its revolution against Spain, and many tourists were traveling to Argentina from abroad to attend the festivities. The Mossad used the opportunity to smuggle more agents into the country. Israel, knowing that Argentina might never extradite Eichmann for trial, had decided to abduct him and take him to Israel illegally.
      On 11 May, Mossad operatives descended on Garibaldi Street in San Fernando and snatched Eichmann away as he was walking from the bus to his home. His family called local hospitals but not the police, and Argentina knew nothing of the operation. On 20 May, a drugged Eichmann was flown out of Argentina disguised as an Israeli airline worker who had suffered head trauma in an accident. Three days later, Prime Minister Ben-Gurion announced that Eichmann was in Israeli custody. Argentina demanded Eichmann's return, but Israel argued that his status as an international war criminal gave it the right to proceed with a trial. On 11 April 1961, Eichmann's trial began in Jerusalem. It was the first trial to be televised in history. Eichmann faced 15 charges, including crimes against humanity, crimes against the Jewish people, and war crimes. He claimed he was just following orders, but the judges disagreed, finding him guilty on all counts on 15 December 1961 and sentencing him to die. On 31 May 1962, he was hanged near Tel Aviv. His body was subsequently cremated and his ashes thrown into the sea.
1956 General Electric unveils the first automated factory machine to operate by remote control, nicknamed "Yes Man," It was designed for the Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion Department of the US Air Force, to perform mechanical jobs in dangerous areas.
^ 1949 Federal Republic of Germany is established.
      The Federal Republic of Germany (popularly known as West Germany) is formally established as a separate and independent nation. Thereafter celebrated as Republic Day. This action marked the effective end to any discussion of reuniting East and West Germany. In the period after World War II, Germany was divided into four occupation zones, with the British, French, Americans, and Soviets each controlling one zone. The city of Berlin was also divided in a like fashion. This arrangement was supposed to be temporary, but as Cold War animosities began to harden, it became increasingly evident that the division between the communist and non-communist controlled sections of Germany and Berlin would become permanent. In May 1946, the United States halted reparation payments from West Germany to the Soviet Union. In December, the United States and Great Britain combined their occupation zones into what came to be known as Bizonia. France agreed to become part of this arrangement, and in May 1949, the three zones became one.
      On 23 May, the West German Parliamentary Council meets and declares the establishment of the Federal Republic of Germany. Although Konrad Adenauer, the president of the council and future president of West Germany, proudly proclaims, "Today a new Germany arises," the occasion is not a festive one. Many of the German representatives at the meeting are subdued, for they had harbored the faint hope that Germany might be reunified. Two Communist members of the council refuse to sign the proclamation establishing the new state.
      The Soviets reacted quickly to the action in West Germany. In October 1949, the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) was officially announced. These actions in 1949 marked the end of any talk of a reunified Germany. For the next 41 years, East and West Germany served as symbols of the divided world, and of the Cold War animosities between the Soviet Union and the United States. In 1990, with Soviet strength ebbing and the Communist Party in East Germany steadily losing its grip on power, East and West Germany were finally reunited as one nation.
1946 During the Nuremberg trials, Baldur von Schirach [09 May 1907 – 08 Aug 1974] admits that Hitler [20 Apr 1889 – 30 Apr 1945], in August 1940, made him Gauleiter of Vienna for the express purpose of driving the Jews and Czechoslovaks out of Vienna. On 01 October 1946, Schirach would be sentenced to 20 years' imprisonment.
1946 Rail workers' strike       ^top^
      The end of World War II unleashed a torrent of labor activity. Workers, whose wages had been frozen in the name of the war effort, strove not only to boost their take-home pay, but to preserve the modest cost of living that wartime price caps had helped establish.
      On this day the rail workers of the US got into the act and headed to the picket line to agitate for fairer compensation. The ensuing strike, led by the Railroad Trainmen and Locomotive Brotherhoods, effectively stopped up the nation's still rail-heavy transportation network and enabled the workers to win better wages. The thrill of this victory was short-lived, however, as the rail unions, along with other labor organizations, failed in their quest to maintain price controls.
      Under heavy pressure from business leaders, who were more concerned with their respective bottom-lines than the ravages of inflation, President Harry Truman eventually acquiesced and rolled back price controls. As the unions had feared, the demise of price caps sparked a heady wave of inflation that washed away the rail workers' post-war wage gains.
1945 German island of Helgoland in North Sea surrenders to British
1943 Thomas Mann begins writing his novel Dr Faustus
1941 II Guerra Mundial. El rey Jorge V de Grecia y su Gobierno se trasladan de la isla de Creta a El Cairo ante la inminente invasión de la isla por los alemanes.
1940 Chute de Boulogne.
1939 British parliament plans to make Palestine independent by 1949
1936 Recepción de Gregorio Marañón Posadillo en la Academia española de la Historia.
1926 Lebanese constitution established under French mandate
1924 Se celebra en la URSS el XIII congreso del Partido Comunista de la Unión Soviética (PCUS), que condena las tesis de Trotski y la oposición izquierdista.
1922 Walt Disney incorporates his first film company Laugh-O-Gram Films
1915 Italy declared war on Austria-Hungary in WW I — Italia declara la guerra a Austria, abandonando su neutralidad para intervenir en la I Guerra Mundial al lado de Inglaterra y Francia.
1912 La Nordeustsche Lloyd fleta el mayor transatlántico del mundo, el Imperator, de 52'000 toneladas.
1903 first automobile trip across US from SF to NY, ended April 1
1903 first direct primary election law in US adopted, by Wisconsin
1901 US captures leader of Philippine rebels, Emilio Aguinaldo
^ 1900 Forgotten Civil War hero is honored
      Sergeant William Harvey Carney is awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his bravery on 18 July 1863, while fighting for the Union cause as a member of the Fifty-fourth Massachusetts Colored Infantry. He is the first Black to receive the award, which is the nation’s highest military honor.
      The Fifty-fourth Massachusetts, formed in early 1863, served as the prototype for Black regiments in the Union army. On 16 July 1863, the regiment saw its first action at James Island, South Carolina, performing admirably in a confrontation with experienced Confederate troops.
      Three days later, the Fifty-fourth volunteered to lead the assault on Fort Wagner, a highly fortified outpost on Morris Island that was part of the Confederate defense of Charleston Harbor. Struggling against a lethal barrage of cannon and rifle fire, the regiment fought their way to the top of the fort’s parapet over several hours, and Sergeant William Harvey Carney was wounded there while planting the US flag. The regiment’s white commander, Colonel Robert Gould Shaw, perished nearby and his soldiers were soon overwhelmed by the fort’s defenders and had to fall back. Despite his wound, Carney refused to retreat until he removed the flag, and though successful, he was shot again in the process. The Fifty-fourth lost 281 of its 600 men in its heroic attempt to take Fort Wagner, which throughout the war never fell by force of arms.
      The Fifty-fourth went on to perform honorably in expeditions in Georgia and Florida, most notably at the Battle of Olustee. Carney eventually recovered and was discharged with disability on 30 June 1864. Thirty-six years later, he was awarded the Medal of Honor.
1898 first Philippine Expeditionary Troops sail from SF
1887 first transcontinental train arrives in Vancouver, BC
1873 Canada's North West Mounted Police force established
1865 the Army of the Potomac celebrates the end of the Civil War by parading down Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, DC.
^ 1864 Fighting begins on the North Anna River, Virginia
      The campaign between Union commander Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee, the commander of the Army of Northern Virginia, continues southward to the North Anna River around Hanover Junction. In early May, Grant crossed the Rapidan River with the Army of the Potomac and then clashed with Lee's forces in the Wilderness on May 5 and 6 before racing to Spotsylvania Court House for an epic 12-day battle. Grant's continuous pressure on Lee would ultimately win the war, but he was racking up casualties at a rate that was difficult for the Northern public to stomach. Grant believed that Lee could not maintain his position at Spotsylvania because two other Union armies under the command of Franz Sigel and Benjamin Butler were attempting to cut off the Confederate supply line in the Shenandoah Valley and the Rebel stronghold south of Richmond. But both were failing miserably. By 19 May, Grant had had enough of Spotsylvania. He pulled his troops to try another run around Lee to Richmond. Correctly predicting Grant's move, just as he had done two weeks before when Grant left the Wilderness for Spotsylvania, Lee raced the Yankees 30 km south and beat Grant's troops to the North Anna River. The rail center here was crucial to his supplies. At the North Anna, Grant found Lee's position to be even stronger than at Spotsylvania. The river had high banks, and Lee's side was higher than the Union side in several places. Still, Grant made an attempt to dislodge the Rebels. He made two assaults, but neither came close to breaking the Confederate lines. He would try again the next day before moving south to Cold Harbor.
1862 Valley Campaign-Stonewall Jackson takes Fort Royal, Virginia
1861 Virginia citizens vote 3 to 1 in favor of secession
1853 Buenos Aires gains independence from Argentina (reunited 1859)
1844 In Shiraz, Persia, Siyyid 'Ali-Muhammad, 24, announces Himself to be "The Báb", or "Gate of God", to the Shaykhí disciple Mullá Hussayn-i- Bushrú'í (later known as the Babu'l-Bab "Door to the Door"), the first of eighteen individuals who sought and discovered the Báb. The Báb proclaimed Himself to be the Promised One of Islam, the Qá'ím, and said that the Mission of His Dispensation was to alert the people to the imminent appearance of the Messenger of God awaited by all the peoples of the world. (Baha'i festival: Declaration of the Báb) ('Azamat 7, 1)
1840 Guerra carlista. Las tropas liberales conquistan Morella (Castellón), que quedó medio destruída.
1823 Entran en Madrid, sin encontrar resistencia, los Cien Mil Hijos de San Luis, expedición militar francesa encargada de restablecer la soberanía absoluta de Fernando VII.
1822 Comienzan las obras del primer ferrocarril del mundo, de 40 km de longitud, entre las ciudades inglesas de Stockton y Darlington.
1795 (4 prairial an III) BEUGNET Albert, gendarme, domicilié à Paris, abandonne le poste de l'Arsenal, les 1, 3 et 4 prairial an 3.ce pourquoi il sera coondamné à mort par la commission militaire établie à Paris le 3 prairial.
1795 (4 prairial an III) TAILLART Antoine, domicilié à Paris, perruquier, se montre participant de la révolte contre la Convention en ce jour, de plus il tiendra des propos incendiaires, en disant que Robespierre et la commune de Paris du 9 thermidor avaient été sacrifiés, que Louis XVI, sous son régime, n'avait jamais tant fait de mal que les députés de la Convention en un seul jour; ce pourquoi il sera condamné à la déportation, le 3 messidor an 3 (21 juin 1795), par le conseil militaire établi à Paris.
1788 South Carolina becomes the 8th state to ratify the US Constitution.
1633 By French edict, only Catholic settlers were permitted permanent residence within the country known as New France (called "Canada" today), thus ending 30 years of attempted colonization by Huguenots (Protestants).
^ 1618 Défenestration commence la Guerre de Trente Ans.
      Des nobles protestants de Bohême se rendent au château royal de Prague, le «Hradschin». Ils rencontrent les représentants du roi Matthias dans la salle du conseil et leur reprochent d'avoir fermé deux temples protestants. Ces nobles, qui se présentent comme les «Défenseurs de la Foi», rappellent que le précédent roi leur avait confirmé le droit de pratiquer leur religion. Ils déplorent par ailleurs que le roi Matthias, sans héritier direct, ait choisi son cousin Ferdinand, archiduc de Styrie, pour lui succéder à la tête du royaume de Bohême. Or, Ferdinand est connu pour être un catholique intransigeant, partisan de la Contre-Réforme. Il se montre peu soucieux de respecter la paix d'Augsbourg, conclue un demi-siècle plus tôt par les protestants et les catholiques du Saint Empire romain germanique. La rencontre au château de Prague tourne au pugilat. Deux gouverneurs du roi ainsi que leur domestique sont jetés par la fenêtre. Les victimes tombent heureusement sur un tas de fumier et s'en tirent sans mal! Mais cette défenestration va être le détonateur de la Guerre de Trente Ans. Cette guerre va laisser l'Allemagne exsangue et consacrera pour plus de deux siècles son effacement de la scène européenne. Le prestigieux royaume de Bohême va aussi perdre son indépendance... pour renaître en 1918 sous le nom de Tchécoslovaquie.
      En Praga, un grupo de nobles protestantes, cuyos derechos religiosos habían sido violados, arrojan por la ventana a los gobernadores imperiales Martinic y Siawata. Este acto de violencia es conocido como Defenestración de Praga y fue el desencadenante de la Guerra de los Treinta Años.
      Defenestration of Prague; the beginning of the 30 Years War.
1576 Tycho Brahe given Hveen Island to build Uraniborg Observatory.
the 6 wives of Henry VIII^ 1533 Henry VIII gets rid of his first wife.
     Se sanciona y hace efectivo el divorcio entre Enrique VIII, rey de Inglaterra, y Catalina de Aragón.
     The marriage King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon marriage is declared null and void. She gets off easy compared with the woman Henry spurned her for, not to speak of other future wives of his.

Henry VIII was not safisfied with getting rid of his first wife so as to marry the second. His six wives were, successively,
1. Catherine of Aragon (married at age 23 in 1509, gave birth on 18 February 1816 to the future queen Mary I, Henry left her in July 1531, and got the Anglican Church started for it to annul his marriage, which it did on 23 May 1533. She died on 7 January 1536 of natural causes),
2. Anne Boleyn (married at age 26 on 25 January 1533, gave birth on 7 September 1533 to the future queen Elizabeth I, was beheaded on 19 May 1536 for adultery, almost certainly falsely alleged, while Henry was guilty of same).
3. Jane Seymour (married at age 27 on 30 May 1536, gave birth on 12 October 1537 to Henry's successor, Edward VI, and died of natural causes on 24 October 1537)),
4. Anne of Cleves, (married at age 24 on 6 January 1940, marriage annulled by Anglican Church on 9 July 1540, she died on 16 July 1557 of natural causes)
5. Catherine Howard, (married on 9 July 1540, beheaded on 13 February 1542 for treason, namely her premarital affairs)
6. Catherine Parr. (married at age 31 on 12 July 1543. Luckily for her, before Henry decided to get rid of her too, he died 28 January 1547. She remarried and died on 7 September 1548, shortly after giving birth)
Henry VIII would have been beheaded if Parliament had been even-handed and declared it treason for an unchaste king to be married. Among his numerous affairs were those with Joan Dobson (giving birth to Etheireda Tudor) , Mary Berkeley (producing in 1525 Thomas Stukely and in 1527 Sir John Perrot 1527), Elizabeth Blount (giving birth in 1519 to Henry Fitzroy, Duke of Richmond), and with Elizabeth Stafford.

click for portrait of Henry VIIIMany others lost their heads to Henry VIII's multiple marriages, and to the creation of the Church of England to attempt to legitimize them.
    One of the most prominent victims was English Catholic theologian Thomas More, beheaded on 6 July 1535 for refusing to recognize Henry VIII as supreme head of the Church of England, which had broken with the Roman Catholic Church so that Henry VIII could get wife number 2 (which he ordered beheaded less than a year after Thomas More, so as to make room for wife number 3).
     Le 6 juillet 1535, Thomas More, Chancelier de l’Angleterre, a été décapité à l'âge de 57 ans pour son opposition au roi Henri VIII, désireux de contrer l’autorité pontificale afin de casser le mariage avec Catherine d’Aragon et de valider l’union avec Anne Boleyn.

[Click on image for Portrait of Henry VIII by Holbein Jr. >]
1493 Comienza la historia del caballo en América, con la cédula de los Reyes Católicos de esta fecha que ordenaba el envío al Nuevo Mundo de veinte lanzas jinetas a caballo escogidas en el reino de Granada.
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^  Deaths which occurred on a 23 May:

2004 Five persons by the collapse of a 30x50-meter section of the roof over a waiting area of terminal 2E at Roissy-Charles de Gaulle airport, near Paris, France, at 06:55 (04:55 UT). That terminal had been inaugurated in June 2003, after at least two construction delays due to safety issues.
Iluz2001 Asher Iluz [photo >], 33, Israeli, in a cross-fire ambush on the road outside Ariel, West Bank. He driving his car on his way to supervise a road paving between Ariel to Rehalim. Also in the car was his bodyguard Yitzhak Goldstein, 29. The shots came from the village of Ariel. The two Israelis drove 300 meters under fire before Iluz was fatally shot in the head and Goldstein was wounded by shrapnel after he managed to fire back at the ambushers. The ambushers used both M-16s and Kalashnikov submachine guns. This brings the al-Aqsa intifada body count to 472 Palestinians and 85 Israelis.
2001: 14 Mexican undocumented immigrants, of thirst, 40 km inside the US, in the desert near Wellton, Arizona, with temperatures reaching 46ºC. They were among a group of 27 smuggled into the US on 19 May east of Yuma in the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge. The smugglers left them there, promising to return with water and instructing them to walk for "a couple of hours" to a highway (which actually was more than 80 km away). One of the survivors dies the next day while being transported to a hospital by the Border Patrol.
2001 Jonathan Stauffer, 15, of neisseria meninigitidis, freshman at West Branch High School, in Alliance, Ohio. The death from the same cause of another student from the same school on 28 May would cause a scare and motivate a preventive mass vaccination.
1994 Miguel Peralta, teniente, por una bomba adosada a su coche por terroristas de ETA (Euzkadi Ta Askatasuna).
1992 Giovanni Falcone, anti-mafia judge, by the explosion of 500 kg of TNT at the passage of his car in Palermo.
1992 Bo and Virginia Simmons, of Daingerfield, Texas, murdered. Of this Tony Lee Walker, a Black, would be convicted in 1993. He would be executed by lethal injection on 10 September 2002.
1992 Atahualpa Yupanqui, cantautor y escritor argentino.
1986 Sterling Hayden, actor y escritor estadounidense.
1955 Auguste Elisée Chabaud, French painter, sculptor, and writer, born on 03 (04?) October 1882.
^ 1945 Heinrich Himmler, born on 07 October 1900, Reichsführer of the SS, suicide
      The architect of Hitler's program to exterminate European Jews commits suicide in Luneburg prison, one day after being arrested by the British.
      As head of the Waffen-Schutzstaffel ("Armed Black Shirts"), the military arm of the Nazi Party, and assistant chief of the Gestapo (the secret police), Himmler was able over time to consolidate his control over all police forces of the Reich. The power he would ultimately wield would rival that of the German army; it would also prove highly effective in eliminating all opposition to Hitler and the party, as well as in carrying out the Führer's Final Solution. It was Himmler who organized the creation of death camps throughout Eastern Europe and a pool of slave laborers.
      Himmler's megalomania, which included a plan to surrender to the Western Allies late in the war in order to pursue the fight against Russia unimpeded, caused Hitler to strip him of all his offices and order his arrest. Himmler attempted to slip out of Germany disguised as a soldier, but was caught by the British. He swallowed a cyanide capsule a day later. Himmler has been portrayed in many films, including The Eagle Has Landed, with Donald Pleasance as Himmler.
^ 1941:: 130 sailors on HMS Kelly, sunk by German dive-bombers
      One of the survivors is Captain Lord Louis Mountbatten, second cousin of King George VI of Britain and the only man other than the king to hold rank in all three military services simultaneously. He is among those thrown into the Mediterranean Sea when his destroyer is among several British cruisers, destroyers, and battleships sunk off Crete by German dive-bombers. The Kelly was attacked by 24 bombers; 130 crewmembers were killed. Mountbatten was still on the bridge of the ship when it finally flipped over; nevertheless, he managed to swim to shore and take control of the rescue operation.
      He would ultimately accept, as senior Allied officer present, the surrender of Japanese land forces within Southeast Asia by General Sieshiro Itagaki. Mountbatten survived the terror of war against the Axis powers, only to be killed by an Irish Republic Army bomb, planted on his boat, on 26 August 1979.
      Side note: Just a day before the sinking of the Kelly, the battleship Valiant was damaged but not sunk during an equally vicious German air attack, also off Crete, which succeeded in sinking two cruisers and four destroyers. Among the crewmen of the Valiant was Lord Mountbatten's nephew, Prince Philip of Greece.
1939: 26 sailors aboard the US Navy submarine Squalus as it goes down off New Hampshire in 75 meters of water. 33 of the 59 men aboard are saved in a daring rescue with a diving bell.
^ 1937 John Davison Rockefeller Sr., born on 08 July 1839, US industrialist and philanthropist, founder of the Standard Oil Company, which dominated the oil industry and was the first great US business trust.
      Rockefeller moved with his family to Cleveland in 1853, and six years later he established his first enterprise, a commission business dealing in hay, grain, meats, and other goods. Sensing the commercial potential of the expanding oil production in western Pennsylvania in the early 1860s, he built his first oil refinery, near Cleveland, in 1863. Within two years it was the largest refinery in the area, and thereafter Rockefeller devoted himself exclusively to the oil business.
      In 1870 Rockefeller and a few associates incorporated the Standard Oil Company (Ohio). Because of Rockefeller's emphasis upon economical operations, Standard prospered and began to buy out its competitors until, by 1872, it controlled nearly all the refineries in Cleveland. That fact enabled the company to negotiate with railroads for favored rates on its shipments of oil. It acquired pipelines and terminal facilities, purchased competing refineries in other cities, and vigorously sought to expand its markets in the United States and abroad. By 1882 it had a near monopoly of the oil business in the United States. In 1881 Rockefeller and his associates placed the stock of Standard of Ohio and its affiliates in other states under the control of a board of nine trustees, with Rockefeller at the head. They thus established the first major U.S. “trust” and set a pattern of organization for other monopolies.
      The aggressive competitive practices of Standard Oil, which many regarded as ruthless, and the growing public hostility toward monopolies, of which Standard was the best known, caused some industrialized states to enact anti-monopoly laws and led to the passage by the US Congress of the Sherman Antitrust Act (1890). In 1892 the Ohio Supreme Court held that the Standard Oil Trust was a monopoly in violation of an Ohio law prohibiting monopolies. Rockefeller evaded the decision by dissolving the trust and transferring its properties to companies in other states, with interlocking directorates so that the same nine men controlled the operations of the affiliated companies. In 1899 these companies were brought back together in a holding company, Standard Oil Company (New Jersey), which existed until 1911, when the US Supreme Court declared it in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act, and therefore illegal.
      A devout Baptist, Rockefeller turned his attention increasingly during the 1890s to charities and benevolence; after 1897 he devoted himself completely to philanthropy. He made possible the founding of the University of Chicago in 1892, and by the time of his death had given it more than $80 million. In association with his son, John D. Rockefeller Jr. [29 Jan 1874 – 11 May 1960], he created major philanthropic institutions, including the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research (renamed Rockefeller University) in New York City (1901); the General Education Board (1902); and the Rockefeller Foundation (1913). Rockefeller's benefactions during his lifetime totaled more than $500 million, while his and his son's totaled more than $2.5 billion by 1955.
^ 1934 Bonnie Parker, 23,and Clyde Barrow, 25, shot dead by police
      The notorious Depression-era outlaws Bonnie and Clyde are shot to death by Texas and Louisiana state police officers as they attempt to escape apprehension in a stolen 1934 Ford V-8 near Bienville Parish, Louisiana..
      Bonnie and Clyde had met in Texas in 1930 while nineteen-year-old Bonnie was visiting her husband in a Texas jail, where he was for murder. At the time, Bonnie was tending bar. Clyde was arrested for burglary and sent to prison soon after they met. Bonnie smuggled a gun, taped to her thigh, into prison to help him escape. He was eventually caught in Ohio and brought back to prison. When a personal appeal from his mother to the Texas governor earned his release in 1932, he vowed never to return.
     After Bonnie was caught stealing a car, she had to spend three months in prison, while Clyde went on a robbery spree. He then killed a sheriff and deputy at a barn dance in Oklahoma. In the fall of 1932, the pair spent their time carrying out small-time robberies throughout Texas and Oklahoma. At one such robbery, they picked up W. D. Jones, a gas station attendant, who joined their team for the next 18 months. Buck Barrow, Clyde's brother who was recently pardoned by the new Texas governor, Ma Ferguson, also joined the gang, along with his wife. Later they were joined by escaped murderer Raymond Hamilton.
      The media latched onto Bonnie and Clyde, who were nicknamed "Suicide Sal" and "Texas Rattlesnake," respectively. The pair loved the attention, posing for snapshots with their arsenal of weapons. In early 1934, they barely escaped a trap in Missouri, killing two lawmen in the ensuing shootout. Buck and his wife, Blanche, were shot and captured, but Buck died from his wounds. Texas Ranger Frank Hamer finally caught up with Bonnie and Clyde in May, after tracking them for more than three months.
     For over two years, the couple evaded local police officers in rural counties of Texas, Louisiana, and New Mexico, and it was not until the Bureau of Investigation (later known as the FBI) became involved that the law finally gained ground on Bonnie and Clyde. The Bureau of Investigation, curiously enough, could only investigate the two on the grounds of the National Motor Vehicle Act, which stipulated that federal agents had jurisdiction to pursue suspects accused of interstate transportation of a stolen automobile. Investigators initially traced a stolen vehicle to the house of Clyde Barrow's aunt. As officers stepped up the pressure to catch Bonnie and Clyde, the well-armed couple went about adding to their own firepower.
      In the spring of 1934, following a tip, federal agents traced the gang to a remote county in southwest Louisiana. A certain Methvin family was said to have been aiding and abetting the Bonnie and Clyde gang for over a year and it was learned that Bonnie and Clyde, along with some of the Methvins, had staged a party at Black Lake, Louisiana, on the night of 21 May.
      Two days later, just before dawn, a posse of police officers from Texas and Louisiana, including Texas Ranger Frank Hamer who had been tracking the couple for more than three months., laid an ambush for Bonnie and Clyde along the highway near Gibsland and Sailes, Louisiana. In the early morning, Bonnie and Clyde appeared in their tan 1934 Ford V-8. . The officers reported that the coupe attempted to flee, but more likely, owing to the fact that Bonnie and Clyde had killed five policemen, the posse opened fire without warning. In two minutes, deputies shoot 187 bullets. Bonnie and Clyde were each shot over twenty times, and were dead by the time their Ford rolled to a stop against an embankment on the south side of the road. Their bullet-riddled 1934 Ford later became a valuable collectible.
      Bonnie and Clyde gained a place in popular mythology as dustbowl Robin Hoods. The 1967 film Bonnie and Clyde, starring Warren Beatty as Clyde and Faye Dunaway as Bonnie, portrayed a charming and irreverent pair who took their game too far. Examination of the couple's past, as well as an examination of their victims, shows that Bonnie and Clyde were more likely carefree killers. Their popularity owed to the mistrust of the authorities of the Dustbowl during the Depression era, and to the couple's uncanny ability to elude the police for over two years.
1918 Maxime-Émile-Louis Maufra, French Impressionist painter and printmaker born on 17 May 1861. — MORE ON MAUFRA AT ART “4” MAY 17 with links to images.
^ 1906 Henrik Ibsen, born on 20 March 1828, major Norwegian playwright of the late 19th century who introduced to the European stage a new order of moral analysis that was placed against a severely realistic middle-class background and developed with economy of action, penetrating dialogue, and rigorous thought.
      Ibsen was born at Skien, a small lumbering town of southern Norway. His father was a respected general merchant in the community until 1836, when he suffered the permanent disgrace of going bankrupt. As a result, he sank into a querulous penury, which his wife's withdrawn and somber religiosity did nothing to mitigate. There was no redeeming the family misfortunes; as soon as he could, aged just 15, Henrik moved to Grimstad, a hamlet of some 800 persons 110 km down the coast. There he supported himself meagerly as an apothecary's apprentice while studying nights for admission to the university. And during this period he used his few leisure moments to write a play.
      This work, Catilina (1850), grew out of the Latin texts Ibsen had to study for his university examinations. Though not a very good play, it showed a natural bent for the theater and embodied themes, the rebellious hero, his destructive mistress, that would preoccupy Ibsen as long as he lived. In 1850 he went to Christiania (known since 1925 by its older name of Oslo), studied for entrance examinations there, and settled into the student quarter—though not, however, into classes. For the theatre was in his blood, and at the age of only 23 he got himself appointed director and playwright to a new theatre at Bergen, in which capacity he had to write a new play every year.
      This was a wonderful opportunity for a young man eager to work in drama, but it brought Ibsen up against a range of fearsome problems he was ill-equipped to handle. In the medieval Icelandic sagas Norway possessed a heroic, austere literature of unique magnificence; but the stage on which these materials had to be set was then dominated by the drawing-room drama of the French playwright Eugène Scribe and by the actors, acting traditions, and language of Denmark. Out of these materials young Ibsen was asked to create a “national drama.”
      First at Bergen and then at the Norwegian Theatre in Christiania from 1857 to 1862, Ibsen tried to make palatable dramatic fare out of incongruous ingredients. In addition to writing plays which were uncongenial to him and unacceptable to audiences, he did a lot of directing. He was too inhibited to make a forceful director, but too intelligent not to pick up a great deal of practical stage wisdom from his experience. After he moved to Christiania and after his marriage to Suzannah Thoresen in 1858, he began to develop qualities of independence and authority that had been hidden before.
      Two of the last plays that Ibsen wrote for the Norwegian stage showed signs of new spiritual energy. Kjaerlighedens komedie (1862; Love's Comedy), a satire on romantic illusions, was violently unpopular, but it expressed an authentic theme of anti-idealism that Ibsen would soon make his own; and in Kongsem nerne (1863; The Pretenders) he dramatized the mysterious inner authority that makes a man a man, a king, or a great playwright. This one play was in fact the national drama after which Ibsen had been groping so long, and before long it would be recognized as such. But it came too late; though the play was good, the theatre in Christiania was bankrupt, and Ibsen's career as a stage writer was apparently at an end.
      But the death of his theater was the liberation of Ibsen as a playwright. Without regard for a public he thought petty and illiberal, without care for traditions he found hollow and pretentious, he could now write for himself. He decided to go abroad, and applied for a small state grant. He was awarded part of it, and in April 1864 he left Norway for Italy. For the next 27 years he lived abroad, mainly in Rome, Dresden, and Munich, returning to Norway only for short visits in 1874 and 1885. For reasons that he sometimes summarized as “small-mindedness,” his homeland had left a very bitter taste in his mouth.
      With him into exile Ibsen brought the fragments of a long semi-dramatic poem to be named Brand . Its central figure is a dynamic rural pastor who takes his religious calling with a blazing sincerity that transcends not only all forms of compromise but all traces of human sympathy and warmth as well. “All or nothing” is the demand that his god makes of Brand and that Brand in turn makes of others. He is a moral hero, but he is also a moral monster, and his heart is torn by the anguish that his moral program demands he inflict on his family. He never hesitates, never ceases to tower over the petty compromisers and spiritual sluggards surrounding him. Yet in the last scene where Brand stands alone before his god, a voice thunders from an avalanche that, even as it crushes the pastor physically, repudiates his whole moral life as well: “He is the god of love,” says the voice from on high. So the play is not only a denunciation of small-mindedness but a tragedy of the spirit that would transcend it. The poem faced its readers not just with a choice but with an impasse; the heroic alternative was also a destructive (and self-destructive) alternative. In Norway Brand was a tremendous popular success, even though (and in part because) its central meaning was so troubling.
      Hard on the heels of Brand (1866) came Peer Gynt (1867), another drama in rhymed couplets presenting an utterly antithetical view of human nature. If Brand is a moral monolith, Peer Gynt is a capering will-o'-the-wisp, a buoyant and self-centered opportunist who is aimless, yielding, and wholly unprincipled, yet who remains a lovable and beloved rascal. The wild and mocking poetry of Peer Gynt has ended by overshadowing Brand in the popular judgment. But these two figures are interdependent and antithetical types who under different guises run through most of Ibsen's classic work. Like Don Quixote and Sancho Panza, they are universal archetypes as well as unforgettable individuals.
      With these two poetic dramas, Ibsen won his battle with the world; he paused now to work out his future. A philosophical historical drama on the Roman emperor Julian the Apostate had long been on his mind; he finished it in 1873 under the title Kejser og Galilaeer, but in a ten-act form too diffuse and discursive for the stage. He wrote a modern satire, De unges forbund (1869; The League of Youth) and then after many preliminary drafts a prose satire on small-town politics, Samfundets støtter (1877; Pillars of Society). But Ibsen had not yet found his proper voice; when he did, its effect was not to criticize or reform social life but to blow it up. The explosion came with Et dukkehjem (1879; A Doll's House ).
      This play presents a very ordinary family—a bank manager named Torvald Helmer, his wife Nora, and their three little children. Torvald supposes himself the ethical member of the family, while his wife assumes the role of a pretty irresponsible in order to flatter him. Into this snug, not to say stifling, arrangement intrude several hard-minded outsiders, one of whom threatens to expose a fraud that Nora had once committed (without her husband's knowledge) in order to obtain a loan needed to save his life. When Nora's husband finally learns about this dangerous secret, he reacts with outrage and repudiates her out of concern for his own social reputation. Utterly disillusioned about her husband, whom she now sees as a hollow fraud, Nora declares her independence of him and their children and leaves them, slamming the door of the house behind her in the final scene.
      Audiences were scandalized at Ibsen's refusal in A Doll's House to scrape together (as any other contemporary playwright would have done) a “happy ending,” however shoddy or contrived. But that was not Ibsen's way; his play was about knowing oneself and being true to that self. Torvald, who had thought all along that he was a sturdy ethical agent, proves to be a hypocrite and a weak compromiser; his wife is not only an ethical idealist, but a destructive one, as severe as Brand.
      The setting of A Doll's House is ordinary to the point of transparency. Ibsen's plot exploits with cold precision the process known as “analytic exposition.” A secret plan (Nora's forgery) is about to be concluded (she can now finish repaying the loan), but before the last step can be taken, a bit of the truth must be told, and the whole deception unravels. It is a pattern of stage action at once simple and powerful. Ibsen used this technique often, and it gained for him an international audience.
      Ibsen's next play, Gengangere (1881; Ghosts ), created even more dismay and distaste than its predecessor by showing worse consequences of covering up even more ugly truths. Ostensibly the play's theme is congenital venereal disease, but on another level, it deals with the power of ingrained moral contamination to undermine the most determined idealism. Even after lecherous Captain Alving is in his grave, his ghost will not be laid to rest. In the play, the lying memorial that his conventionally-minded widow has erected to his memory burns down even as his son goes insane from inherited syphilis and his illegitimate daughter advances inexorably toward her destiny in a brothel. The play is a grim study of contamination spreading through a family under cover of the widowed Mrs. Alving's timidly respectable views.
      A play dealing with syphilis on top of one dealing with a wife's abandonment of her family sealed Ibsen's reputation as a Bad Old Man, but progressive theatres in England and all across the Continent began putting on his plays. His audiences were often small, but there were many of them, and they took his plays very seriously. So did conventionally-minded critics; they denounced Ibsen as if he had desecrated all that was sacred and holy. Ibsen's response took the form of a direct dramatic counterattack. Doctor Stockmann, the hero of En folkefiende (1882; An Enemy of the People ), functions as Ibsen's personal spokesman. In the play he is a medical officer, charged with inspecting the public baths on which the prosperity of his native town depends. When he finds their water to be contaminated, he says so publicly, though the town officials and townspeople try to silence him. When he still insists on speaking the truth, he is officially declared an “enemy of the people.” Though portrayed as a victim, Doctor Stockmann, like all Ibsen's idealistic truth-tellers after Brand, also carries within him a deep strain of destructiveness. (His attacks on the baths will, after all, ruin the town; it's just that by comparison with the truth, he doesn't care about this.) Ibsen's next play would make this minor chord dominant.
      In Vildanden (1884; The Wild Duck ) Ibsen completely reversed his viewpoint by presenting on stage a gratuitous, destructive truth-teller whose compulsion visits catastrophic misery on a family of helpless innocents. With the help of a number of comforting delusions, Hjalmar Ekdal and his little family are living a somewhat squalid but essentially cheerful existence. Upon these helpless weaklings descends an infatuated truth-teller, Gregers Werle. He cuts away the moral foundations (delusive as they are) on which the family has lived, leaving them despondent and shattered by the weight of a guilt too heavy to bear. The havoc wrought on the Ekdal family is rather pathetic than tragic; but the working out of the action achieves a kind of mournful poetry that is quite new in Ibsen's repertoire.
      Each of this series of Ibsen's classic modern dramas grows by extension or reversal out of its predecessor; they form an unbroken string. The last of the sequence is Rosmers holm (1886), in which variants of the destructive saint (Brand) and the all-too-human rogue (Peer) once more strive to define their identities, but this time on a level of moral sensitivity that gives the play a special air of silver serenity. Ex-parson Johannes Rosmer is the ethical personality, while the adventuress Rebecca West is his antagonist. Haunting them both out of the past is the spirit of the parson's late wife, who had committed suicide under the subtle influence, we learn, of Rebecca West, and because of her husband's high-minded indifference to sex. At issue for the future is a choice between bold, unrestricted freedom and the ancient, conservative traditions of Rosmer's house. But even as he is persuaded by Rebecca's emancipated spirit, she is touched by his staid, decorous view of life. Each is contaminated by the other, and for differing but complementary reasons, they tempt one another toward the fatal millpond in which Rosmer's wife drowned. The play ends with a double suicide in which both Rosmer and Rebecca, each for the other's reasons, do justice on themselves.
      Ibsen's playwriting career by no means ended with Rosmersholm, but thereafter he turned toward a more self-analytic and symbolic mode of writing that is quite different from the plays that made his world reputation. Among his later plays are Fruen fra havet (1888; The Lady from the Sea), Hedda Gabler (1890), Bygmester Solness (1892; The Master Builder), Lille Eyolf (1894), John Gabriel Borkman (1896), and Naar vi døde vaagner (1899; When We Dead Awaken). Two of these plays, Hedda Gabler and The Master Builder, are vitalized by the presence of a demonically idealistic and totally destructive female such as first appeared in Catilina. Another obsessive personage in these late plays is an aging artist who is bitterly aware of his failing powers. Personal and confessional feelings infuse many of these last dramas; perhaps these resulted from Ibsen's decision in 1891 to return to Norway, or perhaps from the series of fascinated, fearful dalliances he had with young women in his later years. After his return to Norway, Ibsen continued to write plays until a stroke in 1900 and another a year later reduced him to a bedridden invalid. He died in Kristiania in 1906.
      Ibsen was in the forefront of those early modern authors whom one could refer to as the great disturbers; he belongs with Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Friedrich Nietzsche, and William Blake. Ibsen wrote plays about mostly prosaic and commonplace persons; but from them he elicited insights of devastating directness, great subtlety, and occasional flashes of rare beauty. His plots are not cleverly contrived games but deliberate acts of cognition, in which persons are stripped of their accumulated disguises and forced to acknowledge their true selves, for better or worse. Thus, he made his audiences reexamine with painful earnestness the moral foundation of their being. During the last half of the 19th century he turned the European stage back from what it had become, a plaything and a distraction for the bored, to make it what it had been long ago among the ancient Greeks, an instrument for passing doom-judgment on the soul.

In English translations:
A Doll's House (Gutenberg text)
Early Plays: Catiline, The Warrior's Barrow, Olaf Liljekrans
An Enemy of the People
Ghosts: A Domestic Tragedy in Three Acts
Hedda Gabler
The Lady From the Sea
Little Eyolf
The Master Builder
Peer Gynt
Pillars of Society
When We Dead Awaken
The Wild Duck
1896 José Asunción Silva Gómez, poeta y prosista colombiano.
1895 Franz Ernst Neumann, German mathematician born on 11 Sep 1798. He was the father of mathematician Carl Gottfried Neumann, [07 May 1832 – 27 Mar 1925].
1889 Georges Henri Halphen, French mathematician born on 30 October 1844.
1885 Thomas Clausen, Danish mathematician and astronomer born on 16 January 1801. He wrote over 150 papers on pure mathematics, applied mathematics, astronomy and geophysics. In 1854 he proved that F6, the 6th Fermat number 2n+ 1 where n = 26, is not a prime. It is 18'446'744'073'709'551'617, which, in 1880, Landry prime factored as 274'177 x 67'280'421'310'721. The first to show that, contrary to Fermat's August 1640 guess, not all the Fermat numbers Fp (numbers of the form 2n+ 1 where n is the pth power of 2) were prime, was Euler [15 Apr 1707 – 18 Sep 1783] in 1732 when he discovered that P5, 2n+ 1 where n = 25, which is 4'294'967'297, has the prime factorization 641 x 6'700'417. Since then, thanks in part to supercomputers, research into Fermat numbers has gone much further, but no Fermat number has been proved to be a prime beyond the 4th (2n+ 1 where n = 24 , i.e. 216+ 1 = 65'537), but some have been proved not to be prime, including all Fp with 4 < p <23 (but no factor of F14, F20, or F22 has yet been found). For example, on 25 July 1999, John Cosgrave announced that F382'447, 2n+ 1 where n is the 115'128-digit number 2382'447, has the prime factor 3 x 2382'449 + 1. It was only in 1970 that F7, the 7th Fermat number (2n+ 1 where n = 27), 340'282'366'920'938'463'463'374'607'431'768'211'457, was prime factorized as (116'503'103'764'643 x 2+ 1) x (11'141'971'095'088'142'685 x 29 + 1) which is 59'649'589'127'497'217 x 5'704'689'200'685'129'054'721, though it had been proved not to be a prime more than 60 years earlier. 1873 Prilidiano Pueyrredón, pintor argentino.
1857 Augustin-Louis Cauchy, Paris mathematician born on 21 August 1857. He pioneered the study of analysis, both real and complex, and the theory of permutation groups. He also researched in convergence and divergence of infinite series, differential equations, determinants, probability and mathematical physics.
1842 José de Espronceda poeta romántico español.
^ Condamnés à mort par la Révolution:
1795 (4 prairial an III):
BEDIN Jean Baptiste, gendarme, domicilié à Paris, comme convaincu d'avoir abandonné le poste de l'arsenal, et de s'être mêlé parmi les révoltés, par le conseil militaire à Paris.
DELORME Guillaume, domicilié à Paris, département de la Seine, capitaine des canonniers de la section de Popincourt, par le conseil militaire, comme convaincu d’être auteur et complice d’un complot tendant à dissoudre la Convention nationale, en assassiner les membres, et d’avoir subordonné la garde de ladite section.
1794 (4 prairial an II):
CHABRAL François, ex vicaire, domicilié à Troujet (Allier), comme réfractaire à la Loi, , par le tribunal criminel dudit département.
DUMAS Jacques François (dit Fontbroges), ex noble et conseiller au ci-devant parlement de Bordeaux, 60 ans, né à Libourne, domicilié à Bordeaux (Gironde), , par la commission militaire séante à Bordeaux, comme conspirateur, pour avoir entretenu des correspondance avec des contre-révolutionnaires décidés, notamment le commandant du château de Loches, nommé Bois-Lambert.
HOQUOPA Fatté, 20 ans, natif de Meinz en Allemagne, cordonnier, domicilié à Lyon (Rhône), , , par la commission révolutionnaire séante à Lyon, comme fédéraliste.
MOINE Sébastien, prêtre, domicilié à Mourmoiron (Vaucluse), comme réfractaire à la loi, , par le tribunal criminel dudit département.
NOURY Jacques Etienne, prêtre, domicilié à Courtezon (Vaucluse), comme réfractaire à la loi, , par le tribunal criminel dudit département.
ROLAND Jean Baptiste, 75 ans, tisserand, demeurant à Febvin Pilfart, à Arras
DUMETZ Antoine François, 73 ans, menuisier à Febvin Palfart, guillotiné à Arras
Par le tribunal révolutionnaire de Paris:
BARTH Antoine Martin, 33 ans, né et domicilié à Paris, comme conspirateur et comme convaincu d'être complice de la conspiration qui a existé comme les intérêts de la république, à l'effet de l'anéantir, et de rétablir le despotisme, soit en annulant ou faisant annuler différents marchés .
DIDIER Pierre Louis, 35 ans, né à Givry (Aisne), commis papetier, domicilié à Paris, comme convaincu d'avoir tenu des propos, et fait des écrits tendant à anéantir la liberté.
LANOUE Jean Baptiste, 37 ans, peintre en Bâtiment, domicilié à Paris, comme convaincu d'avoir tenu des propos et fait des écrits tendants à anéantir la liberté.
LEMARCHANT Jean François, 69 ans, ouvrier en Guêtres, fournisseur pour la République, né et domicilié à Paris, comme conspirateur et pour fourniture défectueuse dans les magasins de la République.
PROVENCHÈRE Alexandre, ex administrateur de l’habillement, 55 ans, natif de Saint Ecboillé (Seine et Oise), domicilié à Paris, comme prévaricateur, en faisant et favorisant des livraisons de fournitures infidèles et défectueuses dans les magasins de la république.
DORLY André, 60 ans, né à Versailles (Seine et Oise), commis des guerres jusqu'au 1 juillet 1793, domicilié à Paris, comme prévaricateur.
FORTIN Gabriel Joseph, employé à l’habillement des troupes, 44 ans, né et domicilié à Paris, comme prévaricateur.
CANOLLE Jean, 50 ans, natif de Benat en Périgord, minéralogiste, domicilié au Péage du Roussillon, département de l’Isère, comme conspirateur.
COITARD Avoye (dit Faville), domiciliée à Paris, département de la Seine, condamnée à mort comme conspiratrice
     ... comme contre-révolutionnaires:
BAREME Joseph Antoine, 31 ans, né à Tarascon, hussard au 1er régiment ex-noble domicilié à Lyon (Rhône).
BAREME Joseph Auguste, 32 ans, né à Tarascon, ex-noble, hussard au 1er régiment, domicilié à Lyon (Rhône).
BAREME Joseph Henri, 35 ans, né à Tarascon, ex-noble, brigadier fourrier au 1er régiment d'hussards, domicilié à Tarascon (Bouches-du-Rhône).
FERY Anne, veuve Dupré, garde-malade, âgée de 52 ans, née à Mala (Côte-d’Or), domiciliée à Paris.
GAUDON Marie Nicolas, 34 ans, né à Mégève (Mont-Blanc), domicilié à Paris.
, domestique, à la Chapelle-Hormier (Vendée), par la commission militaire séante aux Sables, comme brigand de la Vendée.
1794 (4 prairial an II) Ferraud, représentant du Peuple, a la tête coupée par BOUCHER Luc, marchand de vin, domicilié à Paris, dans la convention nationale, ce pourquoi ledit Boucher sera par la commission militaire établie à Paris le 6 prairial.
1782 Virgilius Erichsen, Danish painter, active also in Russia, specialized in portraits (especially of Catherine the Great), born on 02 September 1722. — MORE ON ERIKSEN AT ART “4” MAY with links to images.
1726 Jean-Baptiste Nattier, suicide in the Bastille, French painter born on 27 September 1678. — more
^ 1701 Captain William Kidd, hanged, for piracy and murder
      At London’s Execution Dock, British privateer William Kidd, popularly known as Captain Kidd, is hanged for his convictions on five counts of piracy and one count of murder.
      Born in Strathclyde, Scotland, Kidd established himself as a sea captain before settling in New York, where he bought property and married. In 1695, while in London, the earl of Bellomont, a recently appointed governor of New York, commissioned him to defend English ships from pirates in the Red Sea. In 1696, Kidd sailed to New York aboard the Adventure Galley, enlisted men for the mission, and set sail for the Indian Ocean. The expedition met with little success, and failed to capture a major prize until February 1698, when the Quedagh Merchant, an Indian vessel allegedly sailing under a French pass was taken.
      Word of Kidd’s capture of the merchantman, which was loaded with gold, jewels, silk, sugar, and guns, aroused significant controversy in Britain, as the ship had an English captain. Suspicions that he had turned to piracy were apparently confirmed when he sailed to St. Mary’s, Madagascar, an infamous pirate haven, where he negotiated with a known pirate and abandoned the Adventure Galley for an unknown purpose.
      From there, he traveled to the West Indies on the Quedagh Merchant, where he learned of the piracy charges against him. Intending to clear his name, he sailed to New York and delivered himself to the colonial authorities, claiming that the vessels he had attacked were lawful prizes. However, he was arrested and, as English law did not allow pirates to be tried in the colonies, he was taken to London. In 1701, he was tried on five charges of piracy and one charge of murdering a crewman.
       The Tories used the trial as a political opportunity to embarrass his Whig sponsors, and the latter chose to give up Kidd as a scapegoat rather than back his possibly correct claims to legitimacy. He was convicted on all counts, and on 23 May 1701, he was executed by hanging. In later years, a legend grew up around the story of William Kidd, although reports of his fabled buried treasure have not been substantiated.
1669 Joris Abrahamszoon van der Haagen, Dutch painter born in the period 1615-1620. — links to images.
1668 (burial) Philips Wouwerman, Dutch Baroque era painter baptized as an infant on 24 May 1619. — MORE ON WOUWERMAN AT ART “4” MAY 24 with links to images.
1648 Louis Le Nain, French Baroque era painter born in 1593 (1603?), brother of Antoine Le Nain [1588 – 25 May 1648] and Mathieu Le Nain “le Chevalier” [1607 – 20 Apr 1677]. The three brothers worked together, often on the same picture, so that it is impossible to make individual attributions and the three brothers are treated as a single artist. — MORE ON LE NAIN AT ART “4” MAY with links to images.
1627 Luis de Góngora y Argote, poeta y dramaturgo español.
^ 1498 Girolamo Savonarola Ferrariensis, Domenico da Pescia, and Silvestro Maruffi, tortured, hanged and burnt in Piazza Signoria, in Florence
click for portrait of savonarola     Savonarola was an Italian Dominican preacher, reformer, and martyr, renowned for his clash with tyrannical rulers and a corrupt clergy. After the overthrow of the Medici in 1494, Savonarola was the sole leader of Florence, setting up a democratic republic. His chief enemies were the Duke of Milan and Pope Alexander VI, who issued numerous restraints against him, all of which were ignored.
      Girolamo Savonarola, born on 21 September 1452 in Ferrara, was for some time prior of the Convent of San Marco. Inspired by an aversion for worldly things, and the highest religious ideals, with his example and his obscurely threatening and prophetic sermons he condemned first the corrupt way of life of Florence then the church hierarchy in Rome. Ignoring numerous reprimands and contemptuous of danger, he was condemned to death: together with his fellow friars, da Pescia and Maruffi.
     In the beginning Savonarola was filled with zeal, piety, and self-sacrifice for the regeneration of religious life. He was led to offend against these virtues by his fanaticism, obstinacy, and disobedience. He was not a heretic in matters of faith. The erection of his statue at the foot of Luther's monument at Worms as a reputed "forerunner of the Reformation" is entirely unwarranted. Among his writings mention should be made of: Triumphus Crucis de fidei veritate (Florence, 1497), his chief work, an apology for Christianity; Compendium revelationum (Florence, 1495); Scelta di prediche e scritti, Trattato circa il Reggimento di Firenze ; further letters in the Archivio. storico italiano, App. XIII ; poems edited by Rians. The Dialogo della verita (1497) and fifteen sermons were placed later on the Index of Prohibited Books.
SAVONAROLA ONLINE: (English translation): Sermon on the Our Father (11 January 1496)
[click on image for portrait of Savonarola by Fra Bartolomeo >]
< 22 May 24 May >
^  Births which occurred on a 23 May:

1951 Anatoliy Karpov USSR, world chess champion (1975-1985)
1949 Alan García Pérez president of Peru (1985- )
1934 Robert Moog, inventor of the Moog Synthesizer
1931 José Luis Coll García, humorista español.
1930 Jordi Solé Tura, profesor y político español, uno de los llamados padres de la Constitución.
1928 Ioan Mackenzie James, English topologist. Author of The topology of Stiefel manifolds (1976), Topological and uniform spaces (1987), Fibrewise topology (1988), Introduction to uniform spaces (1989), Handbook of algebraic topology (1995).
1925 Joshua Lederberg, 1958 Physiology Nobel Prize sharer, who died (full coverage) on 02 February 2008. —(080205)
1919 Guillermo Díaz Plaja, escritor español.
1914 Barbara Ward economist/writer (Only One Earth)
1914 Lipman “Lipa” Bers, Jewish Latvian US mathematician and human rights activist, who died on 29 October 1993.
^ 1911 New York Public Library
      In a ceremony presided over by President William Howard Taft, the New York Public Library, the largest marble structure ever constructed in the United States, was dedicated in New York City. Occupying a two-block section of Fifth Avenue between 40th and 42nd Streets, the monumental beaux-arts structure took fourteen years to complete at a cost of nine million dollars. The day after its dedication, the library opened its doors to the public, and some 40,000 citizens passed through its door to make use of a collection that already consisted of more than a million books.
      In the late nineteenth century, New York had surpassed Paris in population and was quickly catching up with London, then the world's most populous city, but lacked a public library large enough to serve its many citizens. In 1886, former New York Governor Samuel J. Tilden died, bequeathing to the city $2.4 million to "establish and maintain a free library and reading room in the city of New York." The gift remained unspent until May 23, 1895, when New York’s two largest libraries — the Astor and Lenox libraries — agreed to combine with the Tilden Trust to form a new entity that would be known as The New York Public Library. Sixteen years later to the day, the main branch of the library was dedicated in midtown Manhattan. Over the next few decades, largely thanks to a $5.2 million gift from steel baron Andrew Carnegie, a system of branch libraries opened throughout New York City. Today, the New York Public Library is visited and used annually by more than 10 million people, and there are currently 2.34 million cardholders, more than for any other library system in the nation.
1910 Franz Kline, pintor estadounidense.
^ 1908 John Bardeen, inventor of transistor.
      John Bardeen, along with William Shockley and Walter Bratton, invented the transistor, which set the stage for all modern microelectronics. Bardeen was also the only person ever to win the Nobel Prize for Physics twice.
      Bardeen worked as a physicist for the US Navy during World War II. After the war, he joined Bell Telephone Laboratories, where he worked on the electronic conducting properties of semiconductors. In 1947, his team invented the transistor, which won the group a Nobel Prize in 1956. Semiconductors replaced vacuum tubes in electronic equipment, making electronics progressively smaller, faster, and more durable.
      Bardeen became a professor of physics at the University of Illinois in Urbana. In 1972, he won a second Nobel Prize, with Leon Cooper and John Schrieffer, for their work on the theory of superconductivity. He died in 1991.
1905 Ramiro Ledesma Ramos, fundador de las JONS.
1891 Pär Lagerkvist Sweden, novelist/poet/dramatist (Nobel 1951)
1887 Albert Thoralf Skolem, Norwegian mathematician who died on 23 March 1963. He worked on Diophantine equations, mathematical logic, group theory, lattice theory and set theory. He extended work done in 1915 by Löwenheim [26 Jun 1878 – 05 May 1957] to give the Löwenheim-Skolem theorem, which states that if a theory has a model then it has a countable model.
1862 Hermann Gunkel, grew up to be the German Protestant biblical scholar who pioneered the analytical approach to understanding Scripture afterward known as "form criticism." Gunkel applied its formulas primarily to the Old Testament, in his commentaries on Genesis (1901) and on the Psalms (1926-28)
1861 Jossef Rippl-Ronai, Hungarian painter, printmaker, pastellist, ceramicist, and designer, who died on 25 November 1927. — more
1848 Otto Lilienthal, pioneer aviator.
1846 John Alexander Harrington Bird, British artist who died in 1936.
1844 'Abdu'l-Bah  early Bah'ai¡ leader ('Azamat 7, 1)
1824 Gen. Ambrose Burnside, who later was a US senator and for whom sideburns were named.
1813 Charles-Émile Jacque, French Barbizon School painter, printmaker, and illustrator, who died on 07 May 1894. — MORE ON JACQUE AT ART “4” MAY 07 with links to images.
1810 Alfred de Dreux, French artist who died on 05 March 1860.
^ 1810 Margaret Fuller, in Massachusetts.
     She would grow up to be a writer and editor who inspired other people in the US to devote themselves to learning. Fuller grew up during the Transcendentalist movement. She taught in the Temple School, an educational institution founded by Transcendentalist Bronson Alcott, father of Louisa May Alcott. She later taught in Providence, Rhode Island.
      In 1839 she published a translation of Eckermann's Conversations with Goethe; her most cherished project, never completed, was a biography of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Fuller formed many important friendships during this period, including those with Ralph Waldo Emerson [25 May 1803 – 27 Apr 1882], Elizabeth Peabody [16 May 1804 – 03 Jan 1894], William Ellery Channing, and Orestes Brownson.
     She wrote poetry, reviews, and essays for the Transcendentalist quarterly magazine The Dial and edited for the magazine from 1840 to 1842. She published an account of frontier life in the Midwest, called Summer on the Lakes in 1843 (1844), which captured the attention of New York Tribune editor Horace Greeley. Greeley published Fuller's feminist pamphlet Women in the 19th Century (1845), which argued for emotional and intellectual fulfillment for women.
      Fuller began writing for The Tribune and became the US's first female foreign correspondent when she sailed for Europe in 1846. Her letters were published in 1856 as At Home and Abroad. In 1847, she settled in Italy and in 1849 secretly married an impoverished Italian nobleman and ardent republican, Giovanni Angelo, Marchese Ossoli (which made her Marchesa Ossoli). On 19 July 1850, Fuller, her husband, and her infant son Angelo all died in a shipwreck off the coast of New York.

Life Without and Life Within: or, Reviews, Narratives, Essays, and Poems (page images) — Summer on the Lakes, in 1843Summer on the Lakes, in 1843 Woman in the Nineteenth Century
1790 César Dumont d'Urville, à Condé-sur-Noireau (Calvados). Il sera amiral et découvrira la Terre Adélie, en Antarctique,... et la Vénus de Milo.
1785 Bifocals's invention announced by Benjamin Franklin.
1734 Friedrich Anton Mesmer Austria, physician/hypnotist (Mesmerism) — médico alemán, descubridor del magnetismo animal y del hipnotismo.
1707 Carolus Linnaeus (Carl von Linné), Swedish physician, naturalist biological classifier. He died on 10 January 1778. He would be the author of Flora Lapponica, Systema Naturae, Genera Plantarum, Species Plantarum, Hortus Cliffortianus, Flora Suecica, Fauna Suecica, Västgöta resa, Skånska resa, Hortus Upsaliensis, Philosophia Botanica, Species Plantarum
1683 Antoine Pesne, French painter who died on 05 August 1757. — MORE ON PESNE AT ART “4” MAY with links to images.
1620 Peeter Neeffs, Flemish painter who died after 1675. — more
1614 (baptized) Bertholet Flémal, Flemish painter and architect who died on 10 July 1675. — more
1606 Juan Caramuel y Lobkowitz, Spanish Cistercian, theologian, military engineer, mathematician, who died on 07 September 1682.
1598 Claude Mellan, French draftsman, engraver, and painter who died on 09 September 1688. — MORE ON MELLAN AT ART “4” SEPTEMBER with links to images.
Holidays Bermuda : Empire Day / German Federal Republic : Republic Day (1949) / Jamaica : Labour Day / Rye, Sussex England : Mayoring Day / South Carolina : Ratification Day (1788)

Religious Observances Christ : St Ives of Chartres, patron of lawyers (or 0519?) / Christian-Scotland : Term Day / Nuestra Señora del Milagro. Santos Desiderio y Florencio. / Saint Didier: Evêque de Vienne, sur le Rhône, au temps des Mérovingiens, Didier (de desiderius, désir) est victime d'une fausse accusation de viol montée de toutes pièces par le roi de Bourgogne auquel il reprochait ses vices. Le roi envoie le courageux évêque en exil et finit par le faire lapider. Sur le lieu de son martyre s'élève aujourd'hui Saint-Didier-sur-Chalaronne (Rhône).
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Thoughts for the day:
“Real love stories have no endings.”
updated Tuesday 05-Feb-2008 15:03 UT
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v.7.40 Thursday 03-May-2007 16:13 UT
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