Thread: Life This Day in History
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Old 02-05-2009, 11:05 AM   #139
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February 5.

1576. Henry of Navarre formally renounces Protestantism and becomes a Catholic, paving the way for his coronation as King Henry IV of France. Involved in the religious wars as a Huguenot, upon his ascention he ends the religious strife by legalizing religious liberties (the Edict of Nantes). One of the most popular of French kings, Henry was assassinated by a Catholic fanatic in 1610.

Now is a fun time to discuss Regicide (the murder of a king), and the peculiarly specific method of punishing htose that committed (or attempted) such crimes.

Following numerous rounds of torture for interrogation to discern whether he had any accomplices, Henry's murderer, FRancois Ravaillac, was sentenced to die by being "drawn and quartered."

"The process was as follows: the regicide offender would be first tortured with red-hot pincers, then the hand with which the crime was committed would be burned, with sulphur, molten lead, wax, and boiling oil poured into the wounds. The quartering would be accomplished by the attachment of the condemned's limbs to horses, who would then tear them away from the body. "

Note that after the torture the victim would still be alive and conscious to see his executioners tying him to the horses.

Good times.


1885. King Leopold of Belgium claims the Congo as his personal property. His atrocities there would later lead to serious recriminations and become one of the first international scandals of the 20th century.

1918. This one is just for you guys -- Stephen W. Thompson of West Plains, Missouri, shoots down a German plane. Thsi is the first American aviation victory in warfare.

1945. United States General Douglas MacArthur returns to Manila.

1958. In the air off the coast of Savannah, Georgia, near Tybee Island, A United States B-47 Bomber carrying a Mk15 Hydrogen Bomb collides with an F-86 Fighter Plane, and is damaged but still operational. They receive and obtain permission to jettison its cargo at 7200 feet. A massive search fails to turn up the bomb, which is believed to remain buried to this day in Wassaw Sound. Depending on the particular model, it had between 100 and 300 times the explosive power of the Hiroshima bomb.
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