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Agnes Bernauer Trial and Death

Agnes Bernauer Trial and Death

On October 12, 1435, Agnes Bernauer, the mistress and perhaps also the first wife of Albert, later Albert III, Duke of Bavaria, was condemned for witchcraft and drowned in the Danube. Her life and death have been depicted in numerous literary works, the most well known being Friedrich Hebbel‘s tragedy of the same name. Agnes Bernauer, often called “the Bernauerin”, was probably born around 1410. Nothing is known of her…
Themistokles and the Battle of Salamis

Themistokles and the Battle of Salamis

On September 29, 480 BC, the Battle of Salamis took place, a naval battle between the Greek city-states under Themistocles and the Persian Empire under King Xerxes, which marked the high-point of the second Persian invasion of Greece. Our main source for the Greco-Persian Wars is the Greek historian Herodotus, often referred to as the ‘Father of History’.[1] The Greek city-states of Athens and Eretria had supported the unsuccessful Ionian…
Ramesses II – King of Kings am I

Ramesses II – King of Kings am I

Ramesses II was born 1303 BC, third pharaoh of the Nineteenth Dynasty of Egypt. Ramesses II often is regarded as the greatest, most celebrated, and most powerful pharaoh of the Egyptian Empire. His successors often referred to him as “the Great ancestor”. The reason, why we include this ancient Egytian ruler in SciHi Blog is not only his historical relevance. Recently we have been invited to join the Ramesses II…
Cardinal Richelieu and the Académie Francaise

Cardinal Richelieu and the Académie Francaise

On February 22, 1635, on the urging of Cardinal Richelieu, the chief minister of France, King Louis XIII of France, formally established the Académie française, the French academy. It is the pre-eminent French council for matters pertaining to the French language. The Académie consists of forty members, known informally as les immortels (the immortals). The body has the task of acting as an official authority on the language; it is charged…
The CT Scan of Tutankhamun

The CT Scan of Tutankhamun

On January 6, 2005, the mummy of Tutankhamun (c. 1355-1346 B.C.) was removed from its tomb in the Valley of the Kings to be subject of a state-of-the-art non invasive CT scan, which gave evidence that the young king had suffered a compound left leg fracture shortly before his death, and that the leg had become infected, and did not support the popular assumption that the king had been murdered.…
Charles Gabriel Seligman and the Hamitic Hypothesis

Charles Gabriel Seligman and the Hamitic Hypothesis

On December 24, 1873, British physician and ethnologist Charles Gabriel Seligman was born. Seligman‘s main ethnographic work described the culture of the Vedda people of Sri Lanka and the Shilluk people of the Sudan. He was a proponent of the Hamitic hypothesis, according to which, some civilizations of Africa were thought to have been founded by Caucasoid Hamitic peoples. Charles Gabriel Seligman studied medicine at St Thomas’ Hospital. He later worked…
The Battle of Lützen

The Battle of Lützen

On November 16, 1632, the Battle of Lützen, one of the most important battles of the Thirty Years’ War, was fought, in which the Swedes defeated the Imperial Army under Wallenstein, but cost the life of one of the most important leaders of the Protestant alliance, the Swedish King Gustav II Adolf, which caused the Protestant campaign to lose direction. The Thirty Years’ War was a series of wars in…
Andreas Osiander and Copernicus’ Revolutions

Andreas Osiander and Copernicus’ Revolutions

On October 17, 1552, German Lutheran theologian Andreas Osiander passed away. Osiander published a corrected edition of the Vulgate Bible in 1522 and oversaw the publication of the book De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the revolution of the celestial spheres) by Copernicus in 1543. Osiander pursued mathematics as a hobby and editted Cardano‘s Artis Magnae, which introduced the theory of algebraic equations. Andreas Osiander studied at the University of Ingolstadt…
From the French Blue to the Hope Diamond

From the French Blue to the Hope Diamond

On September 11, 1792, while Louis XVI and his family were imprisoned in the Temple in the early stages of the Reign of Terror during the French Revolution, a group of thieves broke into the Royal Storehouse, the Hôtel du Garde-Meuble de la Couronne, and stole most of the Crown Jewels during a five-day looting spree. Among those was also the Blue Diamond of the Crown of France, later English-speaking historians have…
The Marquise de Brinvillier and the Affair of the Poisons

The Marquise de Brinvillier and the Affair of the Poisons

On July 16, 1676, French aristocrat Marie-Madeleine Marguerite d’Aubray, Marquise de Brinvilliers was found guilty of murder, convicted on the strength of letters written by her dead lover and a confession obtained by torture. Her trial and the scandal which followed it launched the notourious Affair of the Poisons, which saw several French aristocrats charged with witchcraft and poisoning. We’ve already had a focus on Catherine Deshayes Monvoisin, aka La Voisin,…
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