politics

Niemand hat die Absicht eine Mauer zu bauen!

Niemand hat die Absicht eine Mauer zu bauen!

Waving over the Berlin Wall, photo: wikipedia You might wonder, why we have a German headline today. But, this is an original quote, and also a very famous one about the Berlin Wall… On June 15, 1961, first Secretary of the Socialist Unity Party and German Democratic Republic State Council chairman Walter Ulbricht stated in an international press conference, “Niemand hat die Absicht, eine Mauer zu errichten!” (No one has…
Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane

Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane

Citizen Kane – Theatrical Release Poster On May 1st, 1941, Orson Welles famous movie ‘Citizen Kane‘ premiered at RKO’s flagship theatre, Radio City Music Hall. The film was directed, co-written, produced by, and starring Orson Welles. It was nominated for Academy Awards in nine categories and won an Academy Award for Best Writing (Original Screenplay) by Herman Mankiewicz and Welles. Citizen Kane often is considered by critics, filmmakers and fans to be…
Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle and the Marseillaise

Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle and the Marseillaise

Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle singing La Marseillaise On April 25, 1792, French army officier Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle during the French Revolution composes the ‘Chant de guerre pour l’armée du Rhin‘ for the declaration of war against Austria. Under the name ‘La Marseillaise‘ his song later becomes the national anthem of France. I’m pretty sure that almost everybody knows the French national anthem, the so-called Marseillaise, simply because of its numerous…
Encore un Moment – The Life of Madame Du Barry

Encore un Moment – The Life of Madame Du Barry

Madame Du Barry (1743 – 1793) On April 22, 1769, Jeanne Bécu, comtesse du Barry, better known as Madame du Barry, was introduced at the French court. Originally being only a seamstress, Madame du Barry should become Maîtresse-en-titre of Louis XV of France and the most powerful woman in France. Madame du Barry was born in Lorraine, France and had to support herself financially at the age of 15 or…
Catherine de Medici and St. Bartholomew’s Day

Catherine de Medici and St. Bartholomew’s Day

Catherine and Henry‘s marriage On April 13, 1519, Italian noblewoman and Queen of France Catherine de’ Medici was born. Catherine played a key role in the reign of her sons, and is blamed for the excessive persecutions of the Hugenots in particular for the St. Bartholomew‘s Day massacre of 1572, in which thousands of Huguenots were killed in Paris and throughout France. Catherine de’ Medici was born into a very…
Peter the Great and the Grand Embassy

Peter the Great and the Grand Embassy

Peter the Great(1672 – 1725) On March 10, 1697, Russian Tsar Peter the Great began his diplomatic mission to Western Europe, referred to as the ‘Grand Embassy‘. The goal of this mission was to strengthen and broaden Russia’s influence in Western Europe and to find allies against the Ottoman Empire. What makes the mission so special is that Peter the Great led the mission himself, but incognito under a wrong…
Georg Forster – Naturalist and Revolutionary

Georg Forster – Naturalist and Revolutionary

Forster and his father at Tahiti On November 27, 1754, German naturalist, ethnologist, travel writer, journalist, and revolutionary Georg Forster was born. At an early age, he accompanied his father on several scientific expeditions, including James Cook‘s second voyage to the Pacific. His most famous work ‘A Voyage Round the World’ is considered as the beginning of modern scientific travel literature, which also made him a member of the famous…
When Money Buys Little – the Hyperinflation of the Weimar Republic

When Money Buys Little – the Hyperinflation of the Weimar Republic

Money distribution area in Berlin, 1923Image by The German Federal Archive Mid November 1923, the Hyperinflation of the Weimar Republic reached its peak. Due to Germany’s obligation to pay large reparations after World War I, a hyperinflation was induced reaching its peak in November 1923, when the American dollar was worth 4,210,500,000,000 German marks. As Germany got ready for the war in 1914, money was printed and was supposed to…
Quo usque tandem, Calilina – Cicero and the Catilinarian Conspiracy

Quo usque tandem, Calilina – Cicero and the Catilinarian Conspiracy

Cicero Denouncing Catiline by Cesare Maccari On October 21, 63 BC, Roman philosopher, politician, and orator Marcus Tullius Cicero presented evidence to the members of the Roman senate as proof that Lucius Sergius Catilina was preparing a conspiracy to overthrow the Roman Republic, and in particular the power of the aristocratic Senate. Actually, the Catilinarian Conspiracy is one of the best-documented episodes of ancient history. It was the attempted seizure…
The Congress of Vienna 1814

The Congress of Vienna 1814

Congress of Vienna (1814) On September 18, 1814, the Congress of Vienna began with ambassadors of many European states chaired by Austrian statesman Klemens Wenzel von Metternich with the objective to settle the many issues arising from the French Revolutionary Wars, the Napoleonic Wars, and the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire. Its result was a redrawing of Europe’s political map and its effects still last until today. The winning…
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