Michael Faraday holds a very important place in the history of science, notably for his discoveries in the fields of electricity and magnetism and for his work in science education.
The late 19th century saw a revival of British musical composition, prompted by three composers who all earned knighthoods.
On 24th May 1626, a director of the Dutch West India Company named Peter Minuit, a Dutch-speaking German, bartered a consignment of pots, pans, fish hooks, tools and cloth, together worth around 60 guilders, for an island at the mouth of the Hudson River. The value of that island, named Manhattan (“island of hills”) in the local Algonquin language, has risen considerably between then and now!
On 9th March 1796 Napoleon Bonaparte, rapidly rising through the ranks of the French military, married Josephine Tascher de la Pagerie in a civil ceremony. She was six years older than him and had been married before to a victim of the guillotine, but had retained his name of de Beauharnais. She had also been imprisoned for a time so was perhaps fortunate to have survived.
George Frideric Handel (1685-1759) was not a one-hit wonder. However, one of his hits is of such towering importance, and represents such a huge proportion of his legacy, that it deserves far more attention than anything else. But before considering The Messiah, let’s have a look at what else he has left us.
This is the story of the Tay Bridge disaster in December 1879 when a combination of factors, including extreme weather, caused part of the bridge to collapse just as a train was passing across it. There were no survivors.