From today's featured article
Hector Berlioz (11 December 1803 – 8 March 1869) was a French Romantic composer. His output includes orchestral works such as Harold in Italy, choral pieces including his Requiem and L'enfance du Christ, and works of hybrid genres such as the "dramatic symphony" Roméo et Juliette and the "dramatic legend" La damnation de Faust. Expected to enter medicine, Berlioz defied his family by taking up music, and won the Prix de Rome in 1830. Berlioz married the Irish Shakespearean actress Harriet Smithson, who inspired his first major success, the Symphonie fantastique, in which an idealised depiction of her occurs throughout. His first opera, Benvenuto Cellini, was a failure. The second, the epic Les Troyens, was so large in scale that it was never staged in its entirety during his lifetime. Meeting only occasional success in France as a composer, Berlioz turned to conducting, in which he gained an international reputation. He also wrote musical journalism throughout much of his career. (Full article...)
Did you know ...
- ... that Sher Shah Suri (pictured) was often referred to as the "Just King"?
- ... that Wawa Airport's first commercial flights began three weeks before it officially opened?
- ... that after starting the first game of the 2023 NFL season, Jordan Love became only the third quarterback since 1993 to start Week 1 for the Green Bay Packers, following Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers?
- ... that the position of the volcano Lautaro was only clarified thanks to aerial imagery?
- ... that British child artist Noah created the backgrounds for paintings by worldwide celebrities including Ed Sheeran?
- ... that there have been ongoing conflicts for decades about whether Sugarbush Hill is the highest point in Wisconsin?
- ... that country musician Kristian Bush celebrated his 52nd birthday by releasing 52 songs in the span of one year?
- ... that Annie Rauwerda's stew cooked for more than 60 days and had around 300 contributors?
In the news
- Baldur's Gate 3 (director Swen Vincke pictured) wins game of the year at The Game Awards.
- At least 17 people are killed as Cyclone Michaung makes landfall in India.
- Amidst a diplomatic crisis with Guyana, Venezuela holds a referendum to advance its claim to the disputed Guayana Esequiba region.
- A bombing at Mindanao State University in Marawi, Philippines, kills four people.
- Mount Marapi erupts on the island of Sumatra in Indonesia, killing 23 hikers.
On this day
- 1789 – The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (structure pictured), one of the oldest public universities in the United States and the only one to award degrees in the 18th century, was chartered.
- 1886 – The London-based football club Arsenal, then known as Dial Square, played their first match on the Isle of Dogs.
- 1920 – Irish War of Independence: Following an Irish Republican Army ambush of an Auxiliary patrol, British forces burned and looted numerous buildings in Cork.
- 2006 – Criticized worldwide as a "meeting of Holocaust deniers", the International Conference to Review the Global Vision of the Holocaust opened in Tehran.
From today's featured list
Malvids are divided into 59 families of trees, shrubs, vines and herbaceous plants. The malvids, a subgroup of rosids, consist of eight orders of flowering plants: Brassicales, Crossosomatales, Geraniales, Huerteales, Malvales, Myrtales, Picramniales and Sapindales. The cabbage family includes broccoli, turnips and radishes. The ornamental geraniums, and their many hybrids and cultivars, come from five species of Pelargonium. The mallow family includes the plants that yield cocoa beans, Cola nuts, cotton and jute. Eucalyptus trees are the tallest known flowering plants, up to 100 m (330 ft) or more; they are grown for timber and for their oils, used in candy, perfumes and cough medicine. Mangos and cashews come from the same plant family as poison ivy, and can sometimes trigger allergic reactions. (Full list...)
Today's featured picture
Tribhuvan (1906–1955) was King of Nepal from 11 December 1911 until his death. Born in the Nepalese capital, Kathmandu, he ascended to the throne at the age of five, upon the death of his father Prithvi Bir Bikram Shah, and was crowned in 1913 with his mother acting as regent. At the time of his crowning, the position of monarch was largely ceremonial, with the real governing power residing with the Rana dynasty. During World War I, the Ranas wanted Nepal to join the war in support of the United Kingdom, while the royal family wished to remain neutral. Eventually, Prime Minister Chandra Shumsher Jung Bahadur Rana pressured the young king while threatening his mother, forcing him to order the troops to war. This photograph, held by Madan Puraskar Pustakalaya, was taken at Tribhuvan's coronation in 1911.
Photograph credit: unknown; restored by CAPTAIN MEDUSA