08/02 is Coloring Book Day
Prickle-Prickle, Confusion 68, 3187 YOLD (discordian)
And let us not forget 188.8.131.52.6 mlc (the Mayan Long Count)
In 216 BCE The Romans decided that they had recovered sufficiently from the horrible defeats that Hannibal Barca, aka Hannibal, had laid on them at Lake Trasimine and at Trebia that they should raise a huge army and attack him again. They did, at Cannae whereupon his army executed what has become known as the classic double envelopment surrounding and all but annihilating the larger Roman army. The major historical consequence of this battle has been that military historians, generals and wannabe generals have not only studied and analyzed the hell out of it, but the military types have all been taught it and they've all aspired to do it themselves in combat somewhere. Beyond that, no matter what happened, Rome almost always came back, and 14 years later finally hammered Hannibal at Zama and then proceeded to level Carthage itself.
Toledo, Spain fell to the Umayyad Empire aka "the Moors" under the Umayyad Emir Abd al-Rahman III, Caliph of Cordoba (aka Abd al-Rahman ibn Muhammad ibn 'Abd Allah ibn Muhammad ibn 'Abd al-Rahman ibn al-Hakam al-Rabdi ibn Hisham ibn 'Abd al-Rahman al-Dakhil) in 932. The Visigoths, hitherto running the show in Spain, were gone, but the Spaniards, whomever they may have been took it back 560 years later under "Their Most Catholic Majesties", Ferdinand and Isabella who immediately made it the seat of the Spanish Inquisition. Ah well.
Fun Fact Toledo was justifiably famed as a steel making center from about 500 BCE on, especially for swords and in particular a type of sword (scimitar shaped, fwiw) called the falcata The Toledo falcatas were highly prized and favored by a Carthaginian General named Hannibal Barca who outfitted whole armies with them which, in turn, did such damage to Roman armies (romani?, dunno, ask Eddie Izzard) that Rome established Toledo steel as the standard source for the Roman armies. Toledo swords were still highly prized up into the 16th century when they became increasingly obsolete.
Having conquered most of Europe, Napoleon Bonaparte decided to go pick off Egypt and then journey on to India and whup the British out there to make them leave him alone. In 1789 a large French convoy fleet assembled at Toulon and ferried Napoleon and a large expeditionary force to Egypt. After dropping off the French Army at Alexandria, the French fleet sailed up to Aboukir Bay and anchored in line of battle formation. There, in what they considered to be a formidable defensive position, they awaited the arrival of a British fleet which had been chasing them across the Mediterranean. (Their formation, FWIW, was indeed formidable, especially given the standard tactics of the day for fleet engagements.)
The British fleet was commanded by a seasickness prone, one-eyed, one-armed Rear Admiral named Horatio Nelson. As was his won't, Nelson ignored all the rules, the superior numbers of the French fleet, the lateness of the hour, the onshore fortress protecting one end of the French line, and the normal rules of engagement and order of battle; made arrangements for a night battle in shallow water split his fleet in two (Never divide your forces in the face of the enemy, another rule), sent part of his fleet through the French line and into the shallows and used the rest of his fleet to sandwich the front of the French line between two lines of ships while the French rear was stuck downwind and could not assist them. The battle raged all night and when the sun rose on August Second the French fleet was a shambles, with only a few escaping.
This battle had a disproportionately profound effect on the Napoleonic wars, and thereby on European and, arguably, world history. For starts, Napoleons expeditionary force was stranded in Egypt and had to walk home. England gained control of the Mediterranean, was able to harass the expeditionary force as it tried to march home, assisted in its defeat at the siege of Acre, began to blockade French ports and convinced the Ottomans a) not to join Napoleon and b) to join the alliance against him, among other things. Like Cannae, above, this is considered to be one of the most decisive battles of its kind (Naval) ever
On this day in history:
216 BCE – The Carthaginians nearly annihilated a larger Roman army at the Battle of Cannae.
932 – Toledo, Spain, surrendered to the forces of the Caliph of Córdoba Abd al-Rahman III,
1343 – Jeanne de Clisson sold her estates and raised a force to attack French shipping and ports.
1610 – Henry Hudson sailed into what is now Hudson Bay.
1776 – The US Declaration of Independence was signed
1790 – The first US Census took place
1798 – The Battle of the Nile (Aboukir Bay) took place
1858 – The Government of India Act 1858 replaced Company rule with Crown rule
1870 – The world's first underground tube railway opened in London
1873 – The Clay Street Hill Railroad began operating the first cable car in San Francisco
1918 – The first general strike in Canadian history took place
1932 – The positron was discovered, so be positive about things, ok
1934 – Adolf Hitler became Führer of Germany
1937 – The American Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 was passed in America, effectively making weed illegal in the US
1939 – Albert Einstein and Leo Szilard wrote a letter to F. D. R. urging him to begin the Manhattan Project to develop a nuclear weapon.
1943 – Jewish prisoners staged a revolt at Treblinka
1990 – Iraq invaded Kuwait
Born this day in:
Precisely at the point when you begin to develop a conscience, you must find yourself at war with your society.
~~ James Baldwin
1754 – Pierre Charles L'Enfant, architect and engineer, designed Washington, D.C.
1820 – John Tyndall, physicist and mountaineer
1834 – Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, sculptor, designed the Statue of Liberty
1870 – Marianne Weber, sociologist and suffragist
1894 – Bertha Lutz, feminist and scientist
1902 – Mina Rees, mathematician
1914 – Félix Leclerc, singer, songwriter, actor, and poet
1914 – Big Walter Price, singe, -songwriter, and pianist
1924 – James Baldwin, novelist, poet, and critic
1924 – Joe Harnell, pianist and composer
1927 – Peter Swinnerton-Dyer, mathematician and academic
1929 – Roy Crimmins, trombonist and composer
1935 – Hank Cochran, singer, songwriter, and guitarist
1940 – Will Tura, singer, songwriter, and guitarist
1941 – Doris Coley, singer
1942 – Juan Formell, singer, songwriter, and bass player
1944 – Jim Capaldi, drummer, singer, and songwriter
1944 – Naná Vasconcelos, singer and berimbau player
1948 – Andy Fairweather Low, singer, songwriter, guitarist, and producer
1950 – Ted Turner, British guitarist
1951 – Andrew Gold, singer, songwriter, and producer
1951 – Steve Hillage, singer, songwriter, and guitarist
1951 – Joe Lynn Turner, singer, songwriter, and guitarist
1955 – Butch Vig, drummer, songwriter, and record producer
1956 – Fulvio Melia, physicist, astrophysicist, and author
1959 – Johnny Kemp, singer, songwriter. and producer
1960 – Neal Morse, singer and keyboard player
1960 – David Yow, singer and songwriter
1961 – Pete de Freitas, drummer and producer
1962 – Lee Mavers, singer, songwriter and guitarist
Died this day in:
The poet is the priest of the invisible
~~ Wallace Stevens
855 – Ahmad ibn Hanbal, theologian and jurist
1799 – Jacques-Étienne Montgolfier, inventor, co-invented the hot air balloon
1823 – Lazare Carnot, mathematician, general, and politician
1834 – Harriet Arbuthnot, diarist
1859 – Horace Mann, educator and politician
1876 – "Wild Bill" Hickok, gunslinger
1922 – Alexander Graham Bell, engineer, invented the telephone
1955 – Wallace Stevens, poet and educator
1972 – Brian Cole, bass player
1972 – Helen Hoyt, poet and author
1983 – James Jamerson, Motown's principal bass player
1997 – Fela Kuti, singer, songwriter. and activist
2012 – Jimmy Jones, singer and songwriter
2012 – John Keegan, historian and journalist
Holidays, Holy Days, Festivals, Feast Days, Days of Recognition, and such:
Romani genocide related observances, including:
Roma Holocaust Memorial Day (Council of Europe, European Parliament)
Genocide Remembrance Day of the Roma and Sinti (Poland)
International Remembrance Day of the Holocaust of the Roma (Ukraine)
National CAD Day
National Ice Cream Sandwich Day
National Coloring Book Day
Music goes here, iirc, well, With apologies
Big Walter Price
Alexander Graham Bell
Nana Vasconcelos et al
Ok, it's an open thread, so it's up to you folks now. So what's on your mind?