A weekly show hosted by John Green, where knowledge junkies get their fix of trivia-tastic information. This week, John looks at 50 common misquotations and misattributions.
A weekly show hosted by John Green, where knowledge junkies get their fix of trivia-tastic information. This week, John looks at 50 common misquotations and misattributions.
Moshoeshoe (c. 1790-1870) was a leader in South Africa who organized a group of tribes to fight the Zulu warlord Shaka. He called his followers the Basotho people, and although they succeeded in fending off the Zulu, they were drawn into war with Europeans who started settling their territory. In 1966, the Basotho nation became the independent kingdom ofLesotho within the British Commonwealth. The Basotho people honor their founder on this day with a wreath-laying ceremony in the capital city of Maseru, along with sporting events and traditional music and dancing. More…Discuss
Australian-American publishing magnate Rupert Murdoch established News Corporation as a holding company, but it has since developed into a worldwide communications empire. Included among the many assets of Murdoch’s News Corporation are powerful media holdings in Australia and New Zealand; the prestigious Times of London and other British papers; and the New York Post, TV Guide, and HarperCollins book publishers in the US. What scandal rocked Murdoch’s company in 2011? More… Discuss
Though the Bureau of Indian Affairs was given jurisdiction over trade with Native Americans and was responsible for protecting them from exploitation, it had little success safeguarding Native American rights and, instead, evolved primarily into a land-administering agency. It now acts as trustee over Native American funds and lands, promotes development, and provides Native Americans with various social services. How was the Bureau involved in a class-action lawsuit against the US government? More… Discuss
As the days tick by, and searchers fail to turn up any sign of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, it seems less and less likely that this story will have anything other than a tragic ending. Loved ones of the 239 souls on board are clinging to the last vestiges of hope, but they are being told to prepare for the worst. The Boeing 777, which departed Kuala Lumpur on Saturday, vanished without a trace while en route to Beijing. No distress call was issued. It has since come to light that two passengers on the plane were traveling with stolen passports, raising the question of whether the disappearance is terror related. However, until the plane is found, officials can do little more than speculate. More…Discuss
Unlike the earlier Die schöne Müllerin and Winterreise, it uses poems by three poets, Ludwig Rellstab (1799–1860), Heinrich Heine (1797–1856) and Johann Gabriel Seidl (1804-1875). Schwanengesang has the number D 957 in the Deutsch catalogue.
The collection was named by its first publisher Tobias Haslinger, presumably wishing to present it as Schubert’s final musical testament to the world.
In the original manuscript in Schubert’s hand, the first 13 songs were copied in a single sitting, on consecutive manuscript pages, and in the standard performance order. Some[who?] claim that the last song, Taubenpost, text by Johann Gabriel Seidl (1804–1875), catalogue number D 965 A, is not part of the cycle as Schubert conceived it. However, it’s not clear that Schubert intended it to be a cycle at all, or if he did, that he completed it before he died. It may have been Tobias Haslinger, Schubert’s publisher, who conceived of it as a cycle, or attempted to finish an incomplete work by adding Taubenpost onto the end. So most people consider Haslinger’s published version ‘the’ version, and that’s how it’s performed today. Taubenpost is considered to be Schubert’s last Lied.
Franz Liszt later transcribed these songs for solo piano.
Schubert also set to music a poem named Schwanengesang by Johann Senn, unrelated to this collection (number D744 in the Deutsch catalogue). ~Taken from Wikipedia
XXIII Convegno Chitarristico, Modena 30 ottobre 2010, Accademia Nazionale di Scienze Lettere e Arti.
Filomena Moretti – Tra rêverie e virtuosismo: poetica ottocentesca della chitarra – Grande Sonata di Nicolò Paganini (I movimento).
Riprese video: Alberto Boni.
From 1903 until 1957, this holiday in honor of the British Empire was known as Empire Day and celebrated on May 24, Queen Victoria‘s birthday. Between 1958 and 1966, it was called British Commonwealth Day. Then it was switched to Queen Elizabeth II‘s official birthday in June, and the name was shortened to Commonwealth Day. It is now observed annually on the second Monday in March. In Canada it is still celebrated on May 24 (or the Monday before) and referred to as Victoria Day. More… Discuss
Alexander III was tsar of Russia from 1881 until his death in 1894. As ruler, he sought to counteract what he considered the excessive liberalism of his father’s reign and pursued a reactionary policy that promoted Russification and the persecution of religious minorities. Still, economic policy during Alexander’s rule enabled rapid industrial development and allowed Russia to begin building the Trans-Siberian Railroad. To which of Alexander’s relatives was his wife, Dagmar, originally engaged? More…Discuss
Fulgencio Batista worked his way up through the Cuban army ranks before participating in a coup to oust the Céspedes government and install Ramón Grau as president in 1933. Just months later, however, Batista forced Grau’s resignation and became Cuba’s de facto ruler. After a period of exile beginning in 1944, Batista returned to Cuba and led a coup to seize power. His second term as president was marked by brutal repression, which sparked several uprisings, including one led by whom?More… Discuss
If your teen frequently consumes energy drinks, this could be a red flag that he or she engages in other risky behaviors. A Canadian study found that high school students who reported a higher frequency of energy drink use were more likely to also feel depressed, engage in risk-taking behaviors, drink alcohol, and use drugs. Energy drinks’ marketing campaigns may be somewhat to blame for the association, as they are designed make the products seem extreme and exciting. This likely increases their appeal to young people, especially those already prone to sensation seeking. More… Discuss
Live-Recording from 2012: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=roP6Mc…
Slide Show to
qui tollis peccata mundi,
qui tollis peccata mundi,
dona nobis pacem.
Abendlied / Evensong (Josef Rheinberger 1839-1901)
Motet for six-part choir
Bleib bei uns, denn es will Abend werden,
und der Tag hat sich geneiget,
o bleib bei uns, denn es will Abend werden.
Stay with us, because night is coming
and the day has gone,
o stay with us, because night is coming.
Samuel Barber : Souvenirs Op.28 – 1 Waltz:
Primo : Mika Nishizawa
Secondo : Kenichi Nishizawa
バーバー「スーヴェニール」I : ワルツ
the free encyclopedia
Samuel Osmond Barber II (March 9, 1910 – January 23, 1981) was an American composer of orchestral, opera, choral, andpiano music. He is one of the most celebrated composers of the 20th century: music critic Donal Henahan stated that “Probably no other American composer has ever enjoyed such early, such persistent and such long-lasting acclaim.” His Adagio for Strings (1936) has earned a permanent place in the concert repertory of orchestras. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Music twice: for his opera Vanessa (1956–57) and for the Concerto for Piano and Orchestra (1962). Also widely performed is hisKnoxville: Summer of 1915 (1947), a setting for soprano and orchestra of a prose text by James Agee. At the time of his death, nearly all of his compositions had been recorded.
Samuel Barber, photographed by
Carl Van Vechten, 1944
1 VISITOR FROM HERE!
|Multiple waves of colonizers, each speaking a distinct language, migrated to the New Hebrides in the millennia preceding European exploration in the 18th century. This settlement pattern accounts for the complex linguistic diversity found on the archipelago to this day. The British and French, who settled the New Hebrides in the 19th century, agreed in 1906 to an Anglo-French Condominium, which administered the islands until independence in 1980, when the new name of Vanuatu was adopted.|
|A Y-shaped chain of four main islands and 80 smaller islands; several of the islands have active volcanoes and there are several underwater volcanoes as well|
|Location:||Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about three-quarters of the way from Hawaii to Australia|
|Geographic coordinates:||16 00 S, 167 00 E|
|Area:||total: 12,189 sq km land: 12,189 sq km water: 0 sq km note: includes more than 80 islands, about 65 of which are inhabited
Size comparison: slightly larger than Connecticut
|Land Boundaries:||0 km|
|Maritime claims:||measured from claimed archipelagic baselines territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin|
|Climate:||tropical; moderated by southeast trade winds from May to October; moderate rainfall from November to April; may be affected by cyclones from December to April|
|Terrain:||mostly mountainous islands of volcanic origin; narrow coastal plains|
|Elevation extremes:||lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: Tabwemasana 1,877 m|
|Natural resources:||manganese, hardwood forests, fish|
|Land use:||arable land: 1.64% permanent crops: 10.25% other: 88.11% (2011)|
|Natural hazards:||tropical cyclones or typhoons (January to April); volcanic eruption on Aoba (Ambae) island began on 27 November 2005, volcanism also causes minor earthquakes; tsunamis volcanism: significant volcanic activity with multiple eruptions in recent years; Yasur (elev. 361 m), one of the world’s most active volcanoes, has experienced continuous activity in recent centuries; other historically active volcanoes include, Aoba, Ambrym, Epi, Gaua, Kuwae, Lopevi, Suretamatai, and Traitor’s Head|
|Current Environment Issues:||most of the population does not have access to a reliable supply of potable water; deforestation|
|International Environment Agreements:||party to: Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 94 signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements|
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|Nationality:||noun: Ni-Vanuatu (singular and plural) adjective: Ni-Vanuatu|
|Ethnic groups:||Ni-Vanuatu 98.5%, other 1.5% (1999 Census)|
|Languages:||local languages (more than 100) 72.6%, pidgin (known as Bislama or Bichelama – official) 23.1%, English (official) 1.9%, French (official) 1.4%, other 0.3%, unspecified 0.7% (1999 Census)|
|Religions:||Protestant 55.6% (Presbyterian 31.4%, Anglican 13.4%, Seventh-Day Adventist 10.8%), Roman Catholic 13.1%, other Christian 13.8%, indigenous beliefs 5.6% (including Jon Frum cargo cult), other 9.6%, none 1%, unspecified 1.3% (1999 Census)|
|Population:||261,565 (July 2013 est.)|
|Age structure:||0-14 years: 37.9% (male 50,548/female 48,477) 15-24 years: 19.7% (male 25,685/female 25,900) 25-54 years: 34% (male 43,552/female 45,273) 55-64 years: 4.9% (male 6,493/female 6,289) 65 years and over: 3.6% (male 4,817/female 4,531) (2013 est.)|
|Dependency ratios:||total dependency ratio: 69.5 % youth dependency ratio: 62.8 % elderly dependency ratio: 6.7 % potential support ratio: 15 (2013)|
|Median age:||total: 20.8 years
male: 20.4 years female: 21.1 years (2013 est.)
|Population growth rate:||2.06% (2013 est.)|
|Birth rate:||26.35 births/1,000 population (2013 est.)|
|Death rate:||4.2 deaths/1,000 population (2013 est.)|
|Net migration rate:||-1.53 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.)|
|Urbanization:||urban population: 26% of total population (2010) rate of urbanization: 4.2% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)|
|Sex ratio:||at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female 0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-24 years: 1 male(s)/female 25-54 years: 0.96 male(s)/female 55-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 1.07 male(s)/female total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2013 est.)|
|Maternal mortality rate:||110 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)|
|Infant mortality rate:||total: 17.15 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 18.34 deaths/1,000 live births female: 15.91 deaths/1,000 live births (2013 est.)
|Life expectancy at birth:||total population: 72.38 years
male: 70.83 years female: 74 years (2013 est.)
|Total fertility rate:||3.47 children born/woman (2013 est.)|
|Contraceptive prevalence rate:||38.4% (2007)|
|Health expenditures:||5.3% of GDP (2010)|
|Physicians density:||0.12 physicians/1,000 population (2008)|
|Hospital bed density:||1.69 beds/1,000 population (2008)|
|Drinking water source:||improved: urban: 98% of population rural: 87% of population total: 90% of population unimproved: urban: 2% of population rural: 13% of population total: 10% of population (2010 est.)|
|Sanitation facility access:||improved: urban: 64% of population rural: 54% of population total: 57% of population unimproved: urban: 36% of population rural: 46% of population total: 43% of population (2010 est.)|
|Obesity – adult prevalence rate:||27.5% (2008)|
|Children under the age of 5 years underweight:||11.7% (2007)|
|Education expenditures:||5.2% of GDP (2009)|
|Literacy:||definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 83.2% male: NA 84.9% female: NA 81.6% (2011 est.)
|School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):||total: 11 years
male: 11 years female: 10 years (2004)
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|Country name:||conventional long form: Republic of Vanuatu conventional short form: Vanuatu local long form: Ripablik blong Vanuatu local short form: Vanuatu former: New Hebrides|
|Government type:||parliamentary republic|
|Capital:||name: Port-Vila (on Efate) geographic coordinates: 17 44 S, 168 19 E time difference: UTC+11 (16 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)|
|Administrative divisions:||6 provinces; Malampa, Penama, Sanma, Shefa, Tafea, Torba|
|Independence:||30 July 1980 (from France and the UK)|
|National holiday:||Independence Day, 30 July (1980)|
|Constitution:||30 July 1980|
|Legal system:||mixed legal system of English common law, French law, and customary law|
|Suffrage:||18 years of age; universal|
|Executive branch:||chief of state: President Iolu Johnson ABBIL (since 3 September 2009) head of government: Prime Minister Moana CARCASSES Kalosil (since 23 March 2013) cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister, responsible to parliament (For more information visit the World Leaders website ) elections: president elected for a five-year term by an electoral college consisting of parliament and the presidents of the regional councils; election for president last held on 2 September 2009 (next to be held in 2014); following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or majority coalition usually elected prime minister by parliament from among its members; election for prime minister last held on 23 March 2013 (next to be held following general elections in 2016) election results: Iolu Johnson ABBIL elected president, with 41 votes out of 58, on the third ballot on 2 September 2009; Moana CARCASSES Kalosil was elected prime minister following the resignation of Sato KILMAN on 21 March 2013|
|Legislative branch:||unicameral Parliament (52 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: last held on 30 October 2012 (next to be held in 2016) election results: percent of vote by party – NA; seats by party – VP 8, PPP 6, UMP 5, GJP 4, NUP 4, IG 3, GC 3, NAG 3, RMC 3, MPP 2, NIPDP 2, PSP 1, VLDP 1, VNP 1, VPDP 1, VRP 1, and independent 4; note – political party associations are fluid note: the National Council of Chiefs advises on matters of culture and language|
|Judicial branch:||highest court(s): Supreme Court (consists of a chief justice and 3 judges); note – appeals from the Supreme Court are considered by the Court of Appeal, constituted by 2 or more judges of the Supreme Court sitting together judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court chief justice appointed by the president after consultation with the prime minister and the leader of the opposition; other judges are appointed by the president on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission, a 4-member advisory body; judges appointed until age of retirement subordinate courts: magistrates’ courts; island courts|
|Political parties and leaders:||Greens Confederation or GC [Moana CARCASSES Kalosil] Iauko Group or IG [NA] Land and Justice Party (Graon mo Jastis Pati) or GJP [Ralph REGENVANU] Melanesian Progressive Party or MPP [Barak SOPE] Nagriamel movement or NAG [NA] Natatok Indigenous People’s Democratic Party or (NATATOK) or NIPDP [Alfred Roland CARLOT] National United Party or NUP [Ham LINI] People’s Progressive Party or PPP [Sato KILMAN] People’s Service Party or PSP [Don KEN] Reunification of Movement for Change or RMC [Charlot SALWAI] Union of Moderate Parties or UMP [Serge VOHOR] Vanua’aku Pati (Our Land Party) or VP [Edward NATAPEI] Vanuatu Democratic Party [Maxime Carlot KORMAN] Vanuatu Liberal Democratic Party or VLDP [Tapangararua WILLIE] Vanuatu National Party or VNP [Issac HAMARILIU] Vanuatu Progressive Development Party or VPDP [Robert Bohn SIKOL] Vanuatu Republican Party or VRP [Marcellino PIPITE]|
|Political pressure groups and leaders:||NA|
|International organization participation:||ACP, ADB, AOSIS, C, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, IOC, IOM, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NAM, OAS (observer), OIF, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO|
|National symbol(s):||boar’s tusk|
|National anthem:||name: “Yumi, Yumi, Yumi” (We, We, We) lyrics/music: Francois Vincent AYSSAV note: adopted 1980, the anthem is written in Bislama, a Creole language that mixes Pidgin English and French|
|Diplomatic representation in the US:||Vanuatu does not have an embassy in the US; it does, however, have a Permanent Mission to the UN|
|Diplomatic representation from the US:||the US does not have an embassy in Vanuatu; the US ambassador to Papua New Guinea is accredited to Vanuatu|
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|This South Pacific island economy is based primarily on small-scale agriculture, which provides a living for about two-thirds of the population. Fishing, offshore financial services, and tourism, with nearly 197,000 visitors in 2008, are other mainstays of the economy. Mineral deposits are negligible; the country has no known petroleum deposits. A small light industry sector caters to the local market. Tax revenues come mainly from import duties. Economic development is hindered by dependence on relatively few commodity exports, vulnerability to natural disasters, and long distances from main markets and between constituent islands. In response to foreign concerns, the government has promised to tighten regulation of its offshore financial center. In mid-2002, the government stepped up efforts to boost tourism through improved air connections, resort development, and cruise ship facilities. Agriculture, especially livestock farming, is a second target for growth. Australia and New Zealand are the main suppliers of tourists and foreign aid.|
Natalia Gutman cello
Viacheslav Poprugin piano
The Symphony No. 3 in F major, Op. 90, is a symphony by Johannes Brahms. The work was written in the summer of 1883 at Wiesbaden, nearly six years after he completed his Second Symphony. In the interim Brahms had written some of his greatest works, including the Violin Concerto, two overtures (Tragic Overture and Academic Festival Overture), and the Second Piano Concerto.
The premiere performance was given on 2 December 1883 by the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, under the direction of Hans Richter. The shortest of Brahms’ four symphonies, a typical performance lasts between 30 and 40 minutes.
The symphony consists of four movements, marked as follows:
Hans Richter, who conducted the premiere of the symphony, proclaimed it to be Brahms’ Eroica. The symphony was well received, more so than his Second Symphony. Although Richard Wagner had died earlier that year, the public feud between Brahms and Wagner had not yet subsided. Wagner enthusiasts tried to interfere with the symphony’s premiere, and the conflict between the two factions nearly brought about a duel.
After each performance, Brahms polished his score further, until it was published in May 1884. His friend and influential music critic Eduard Hanslick said, “Many music lovers will prefer the titanic force of the First Symphony; others, the untroubled charm of the Second, but the Third strikes me as being artistically the most nearly perfect.”
And that’s where her will ran right up against her father’s. He told Frances she was far too young to know her mind – but not too young to be married. He had already promised her in marriage to the son of another wealthy family. In Rome at that time a father’s word was law; a father could even sell his children into slavery or order them killed.
Frances probably felt that’s what he was doing by forcing her to marry. But just as he wouldn’t listen to her, Frances wouldn’t listen to him. She stubbornly prayed to God to prevent the marriage until her confessor pointed out, “Are you crying because you want to do God’s will or because you want God to do your will?”
She gave in to the marriage — reluctantly. It was difficult for people to understand her objection. Her future husband Lorenzo Ponziani was noble, wealthy, a good person and he really cared for her. An ideal match — except for someone who was determined to be a bride of Christ.
Then her nightmare began. This quiet, shy thirteen year old was thrust into the whirl of parties and banquets that accompanied a wedding. Her mother-in-law Cecilia loved to entertain and expected her new daughter-in-law to enjoy the revelry of her social life too. Fasting and scourging were far easier than this torture God now asked her to face.
Frances collapsed from the strain. For months she lay close to death, unable to eat or move or speak.
At her worst, she had a vision of St. Alexis. The son of a noble family, Alexis had run away to beg rather than marry. After years of begging he was so unrecognizable that when he returned home his own father thought he was just another beggar and made him sleep under the stairs. In her own way, Frances must have felt unrecognized by her family – they couldn’t see how she wanted to give up everything for Jesus. St. Alexis told her God was giving her an important choice: Did she want to recover or not?
It’s hard for us to understand why a thirteen-year-old would want to die but Frances was miserable. Finally, she whispered, “God’s will is mine.” The hardest words she could have said — but the right words to set her on the road to sanctity.
St. Alexis replied, “Then you will live to glorify His Name.” Her recovery was immediate and complete. Lorenzo became even more devoted to her after this — he was even a little in awe of her because of what she’d been through.
But her problems did not disappear. Her mother-in-law still expected her to entertain and go on visits with her. Look at Frances’ sister-in-law Vannozza –happily going through the rounds of parties, dressing up, playing cards. Why couldn’t Frances be more like Vannozza?
In a house where she lived with her husband, his parents, his brother and his brother’s family, she felt all alone. And that’s why Vannozza found her crying bitterly in the garden one day. When Frances poured out her heart to Vannozza and it turned out that this sister-in-law had wanted to live a life devoted to the Lord too. What Frances had written off as frivolity was just Vannozza’s natural easy-going and joyful manner. They became close friends and worked out a program of devout practices and services to work together.
They decided their obligations to their family came first. For Frances that meant dressing up to her rank, making visits and receiving visits — and most importantly doing it gladly. But the two spiritual friends went to masstogether, visited prisons, served in hospitals and set up a secret chapel in an abandoned tower of their palace where they prayed together.
But it wasn’t fashionable for noblewomen to help the poor and people gossiped about two girls out alone on the streets. Cecilia suffered under the laughter of her friends and yelled at her daughters-in-law to stop theirs spiritual practices. When that didn’t work Cecilia then appealed to her sons, but Lorenzo refused to interfere with Frances’ charity.
The beginning of the fifteenth century brought the birth of her first son, Battista, after John the Baptist. We might expect that the grief of losing her mother-in-law soon after might have been mixed with relief — no more pressure to live in society. But a household as large as the Ponziani’s needed someone to run it. Everyone thought that sixteen-year-old Frances was best qualified to take her mother-in-law’s place. She was thrust even more deeply into society and worldly duties. Her family was right, though — she was an excellent administrator and a fair and pleasant employer.
After two more children were born to her — a boy, Giovanni Evangelista, and a girl, Agnes — a flood brought disease and famine to Rome. Frances gave orders that no one asking for alms would be turned away and she and Vannozza went out to the poor with corn, wine, oil and clothing. Her father-in-law, furious that she was giving away their supplies during a famine, took the keys of the granary and wine cellar away from her.
Then just to make sure she wouldn’t have a chance to give away more, he sold off their extra corn, leaving just enough for the family, and all but one cask of one. The two noblewomen went out to the streets to beg instead.
Finally Frances was so desperate for food to give to the poor she went to the now empty corn loft and sifted through the straw searching for a few leftover kernels of corn. After she left Lorenzo came in and was stunned to find the previously empty granary filled with yellow corn. Frances drew wine out of their one cask until one day her father in law went down and found it empty. Everyone screamed at Frances. After saying a prayer, she led them to cellar, turned the spigot on the empty cask, and out flowed the most wonderful wine. These incidents completely converted Lorenzo and her father-in-law.
Having her husband and father-in-law completely on her side meant she could do what she always wanted. She immediately sold her jewels and clothes and distributed money to needy. She started wearing a dress of coarse green cloth.
Civil war came to Rome – this was a time of popes and antipopes and Rome became a battleground. At one point there were three men claiming to be pope. One of them sent a cruel governor, Count Troja, to conquer Rome. Lorenzo was seriously wounded and his brother was arrested. Troja sent word that Lorenzo’s brother would be executed unless he had Battista, Frances’s son and heir of the family, as a hostage. As long as Troja had Battista he knew the Ponzianis would stop fighting.
When Frances heard this she grabbed Battista by the hand and fled. On the street, she ran into her spiritual adviser Don Andrew who told her she was choosing the wrong way and ordered her to trust God. Slowly she turned around and made her way to Capitol Hill where Count Troja was waiting. As she and Battista walked the streets, crowds of people tried to block her way or grab Battista from her to save him. After giving him up, Frances ran to a church to weep and pray.
As soon as she left, Troja had put Battista on a soldier’s horse — but every horse they tried refused to move. Finally the governor gave in to God’s wishes. Frances was still kneeling before the altar when she felt Battista’s little arms around her.
But the troubles were not over. Frances was left alone against the attackers when she sent Lorenzo out of Rome to avoid capture. Drunken invaders broke into her house, tortured and killed the servants, demolished the palace, literally tore it apart and smashed everything. And this time God did not intervene — Battista was taken to Naples. Yet this kidnapping probably saved Battista’s life because soon a plague hit — a plague that took the lives of many including Frances’ nine-year-old son Evangelista.
At this point, her house in ruins, her husband gone, one son dead, one son a hostage, she could have given up. She looked around, cleared out the wreckage of the house and turned it into a makeshift hospital and a shelter for the homeless.
One year after his death Evangelista came to her in a vision and told her that Agnes was going to die too. In returnGod was granting her a special grace by sending an archangel to be her guardian angel for the rest of her life. She would always been able to see him. A constant companion and spiritual adviser, he once commanded her to stop her severe penances (eating only bread and water and wearing a hair shirt). “You should understand by now,” theangel told her, “that the God who made your body and gave it to your soul as a servant never intended that thespirit should ruin the flesh and return it to him despoiled.”
Finally the wars were over and Battista and her husband returned home. But though her son came back a charming young man her husband returned broken in mind and body. Probably the hardest work of healing Frances had to do in her life was to restore Lorenzo back to his old self.
When Battista married a pretty young woman named Mabilia Frances expected to find someone to share in the management of the household. But Mabilia wanted none of it. She was as opposite of Frances and Frances had been of her mother-in- law. Mabilia wanted to party and ridiculed Frances in public for her shabby green dress, her habits, and her standards. One day in the middle of yelling at her, Mabilia suddenly turned pale and fainted, crying, “Oh my pride, my dreadful pride.” Frances nursed her back to health and healed their differences as well. A converted Mabilia did her best to imitate Frances after that.
With Lorenzo’s support and respect, Frances started a lay order of women attached to the Benedictines called the Oblates of Mary. The women lived in the world but pledged to offer themselves to God and serve the poor. Eventually they bought a house where the widowed members could live in community.
Frances nursed Lorenzo until he died. His last words to her were, “I feel as if my whole life has been one beautiful dream of purest happiness. God has given me so much in your love.” After his death, Frances moved into the house with the other Oblates and was made superior. At 52 she had the life she dreamed of when she was eleven. She had been right in discerning her original vocation — she just had the timing wrong. God had had other plans for her in between.
Frances died four years later. Her last words were “The angel has finished his task — he beckons me to follow him.”
In Her Footsteps:Do you have a spiritual friend who helps you on your journey, someone to pray with and serve with? If you don’t have one now, ask God to send you such a companion. Then look around you. This friend, like Frances’ Vannozza, may be near you already. Try sharing some of your spiritual hopes and desires with those closest to you. You may be surprised at their reaction. (But don’t force your opinions on others or get discouraged by lack of interest. Just keep asking God to lead you.)
Other Saints for March 9:
Baron Bliss Day is a public holiday in Belize honoring Englishman Henry Edward Ernest Victor Bliss (1869-1926). When he died on March 9, Bliss bequeathed his entire estate to Belize City. On this day each year, a morning mass and wreath laying is held at his tomb in the Fort Point area. Then there is a regatta in the harbor, a cycle race, and a kite contest. More…Discuss
Gagarin was a Russian cosmonaut who, in 1961, became the first human being to successfully travel into space. Gagarin circled the Earth once during his 1-hour-and-48-minute flight aboard the Vostok 1. His success is believed to have ushered in the modern era of man in space, and Gagarin toured widely to promote the Soviet achievement. Ironically, he died in a plane crash seven years later. What factors did Soviet officials consider when choosing Gagarin for the historic space flight? More… Discuss
When Ruth Handler realized that there were no adult-bodied dolls on the toy market, she suggested to her husband—with whom she co-founded the Mattel toy company—that Mattel begin producing one. In 1959, Barbie made her debut. She was based on a German doll called Bild Lilli and was marketed as a “Teen-age Fashion Model.” According to estimates, more than a billion Barbie dolls have been sold worldwide, and many have become collector’s items. Who is the “Barbie” after whom the doll was named? More… Discuss
The World Health Organization (WHO) is recommending that people aim to get no more than five percent of their daily caloric intake from sugar, half the long-standing recommendation of 10 percent. For an adult with a normal body mass index, or BMI, this new recommendation translates to about six teaspoons’ worth of sugar a day. Excess sugar consumption can lead to weight gain and associated health risks, such as heart disease, diabetes, and even certain cancers, as well as dental damage. More… Discuss
Johannes Bramhs (1833 – 1897)
Pianokonzer Nr. 2
Piano concerto N° 2
Gioachino Antonio Rossini (1792 – 1868)
“The Barber of Seville”, or “The Useless Precaution” (“Il barbiere di Siviglia, ossia L’inutile precauzione”) is an opera buffa in two acts by Gioachino Rossini with a libretto (based on Beaumarchais‘s comedy Le Barbier de Séville) by Cesare Sterbini.
The overture, first written for “Aureliano in Palmira“, is a famous example of Rossini’s characteristic Italian style.
Feastday: March 8
John of God is patron saint of booksellers, printers, heart patients, hospitals, nurses, the sick, and firefighters and is considered the founder of the Brothers Hospitallers.
1495 – 1550
From the time he was eight to the day he died, John followed every impulse of his heart. The challenge for him was to rush to follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit gave him, not his own human temptations. But unlike many who act impulsively, when John made a decision, no matter how quickly, he stuck with it, no matter what the hardship.
At eight years old, John heard a visiting priest speak of adventures that were waiting in the age of 1503 with new worlds being opened up. That very night he ran away from home to travel with thepriest and never saw his parents again. They begged their way from village to village until John fell sick. The man who nursed him back to health, the manager of a large estate, adopted John.John worked as a shepherd in the mountains until he was 27. Feeling pressure to marry the manager’s daughter, whom he loved as a sister, John took off to join the Spanish army in the waragainst France. As a soldier, he was hardly a model of holiness, taking part in the gambling, drinking, and pillaging that his comrades enjoyed. One day, he was thrown from a stolen horse near French lines. Frightened that he would be captured or killed, he reviewed his life and vowed impulsively to make a change.
When he returned he kept his spur of the moment vow, made a confession, and immediately changed his life. His comrades didn’tmind so much that John was repenting but hated that he wanted them to give up their pleasures too. So they used his impulsivenature to trick him into leaving his post on the pretext of helping someone in need. He was rescued from hanging at the last minute and thrown out of the army after being beaten and stripped. He begged his way back to his foster-home where he worked as a shepherd until he heard of a new war with Moslems invading Europe. Off he went but after the war was over, he decided to try to find his real parents. To his grief he discovered both had died in his absence.
As a shepherd he had plenty of time to contemplate what God might want of his life. When he decided at 38 that he should go to Africa to ransom Christian captives, he quit immediately and set off for the port of Gibraltar. He was on the dock waiting for his ship when he saw a family obviously upset and grieving. When he discovered they were a noble family being exiled to Africa after political intrigues, he abandoned his original plan and volunteered to be their servant. The family fell sick when they reached their exile and John kept them alive not only by nursing them but by earning money to feed them. His job building fortifications was grueling, inhuman work and the workers were beaten and mistreated by people who called themselves Catholics. Seeing Christians act this way so disturbed John that it shook his faith. A priest advised him not to blame the Church for their actions and to leave for Spain at once. John did go back home — but only after he learned that his newly adopted family had received pardons.
In Spain he spent his days unloading ship cargoes and his nights visiting churches and reading spiritual books. Reading gave him so much pleasure that he decided that he should share this joy with others. He quit his job and became a book peddler, traveling from town to town selling religious books and holy cards. A vision at age 41 brought him to Granada where he sold books from a little shop. (For this reason he is patron saint of booksellers and printers.)
After hearing a sermon from the famous John of Avila on repentance, he was so overcome by the thought of his sins that the whole town thought the little bookseller had gone from simple eccentricity to madness. After the sermon John rushed back to his shop, tore up any secular books he had, gave away all his religious books and all his money. Clothes torn and weeping, he was the target of insults, jokes, and even stones and mud from the townspeople and their children.
Friends took the distraught John to the Royal Hospital where he was interned with the lunatics. John suffered the standard treatment of the time – being tied down and daily whipping. John of Avila came to visit him there and told him his penance had gone on long enough — forty days, the same amount as the Lord’s suffering the desert – and had John moved to a better part of the hospital.
John of God could never see suffering without trying to do something about it. And now that he was free to move, although still a patient, he immediately got up and began to help the other sick people around him. The hospital was glad to have his unpaid nursing help and were not happy to release him when one day he walked in to announce he was going to start his own hospital.
John may have been positive that God wanted him to start a hospital for the poor who got bad treatment, if any, from the other hospitals, but everyone else still thought of him as a madman. It didn’t help that he decided to try to finance his plan by selling wood in the square. At night he took what little money he earned and brought food and comfort to the poor living in abandoned buildings and under bridges. Thus his first hospital was the streets of Granada.
Within an hour after seeing a sign in a window saying “House to let for lodging of the poor” he had rented the house in order to move his nursing indoors. Of course he rented it without money for furnishings, medicine, or help. After he begged money for beds, he went out in the streets again and carried his ill patients back on the same shoulders that had carried stones, wood, and books. Once there he cleaned them, dressed their wounds, and mended their clothes at night while he prayed. He used his old experience as a peddler to beg alms, crying through the streets in his peddler’s voice, “Do good to yourselves! For the love of God, Brothers, do good!” Instead of selling goods, he took anything given — scraps of good, clothing, a coin here and there.
Throughout his life he was criticized by people who didn’t like the fact that his impulsive love embraced anyone in need without asking for credentials or character witnesses. When he was able to move his hospital to an old Carmelite monastery, he opened a homeless shelter in the monastery hall. Immediately critics tried to close him down saying he was pampering troublemakers. His answer to this criticism always was that he knew of only one bad character in the hospital and that was himself. His urge to act immediately when he saw need got him into trouble more than a few times. Once, when he encountered a group of starving people, he rushed into a house,stole a pot of food, and gave it to them. He was almost arrested for that charity! Another time, on finding a group of children in rags, he marched them into a clothing shop and bought them all new clothes. Since he had no money, he paid for it all on credit!
Yet his impulsive wish to help saved many people in one emergency. The alarm went out that the Royal Hospital was on fire. When he dropped everything to run there, he found that the crowd was just standing around watching the hospital — and its patients — go up in flames. He rushed into the blazing building and carried or led the patients out. When all the patients were rescued, he started throwing blankets, sheets, and mattresses out the windows — how well he knew from his own hard work how important these things were. At that point a cannon was brought to destroy the burning part of the building in order to save the rest. John stopped them, ran up the roof, and separated the burning portion with an axe. He succeeded but fell through the burning roof. All thought they had lost their hero until John of God appeared miraculously out of smoke. (For this reason, John of God is patron saint of firefighters.)
John was ill himself when he heard that a flood was bringing precious driftwood near the town. He jumped out of bed to gather the wood from the raging river. Then when one of his companions fell into the river, John without thought for his illness or safety jumped in after him. He failed to save the boy and caught pneumonia. He died on March 8, his fifty-fifth birthday, of the same impulsive love that had guided his whole life.
John of God is patron saint of booksellers, printers, heart patients, hospitals, nurses, the sick, and firefighters and is considered the founder of the Brothers Hospitallers.
This day commemorating women is one of the most widely observed holidays of recent origin. It has its roots in the March 8, 1857, revolt of women in New York City, protesting conditions in the textile and garment industries, although it wasn’t proclaimed a holiday until 1910. In Great Britain and the United States, International Women’s Day is marked by special exhibitions, films, etc., in praise of women. In the former U.S.S.R., women received honors for distinguished service in industry, aviation, military service, and other fields. More… Discuss
Finland’s multitalented Tapio Rautavaara was a successful athlete, singer, and actor. He won Olympic gold for javelin throwing and was also a top archer. He acted in numerous Finnish films and recorded more than 300 songs before his death in 1979, the result of a brain injury caused by a slip-and-fall accident. His death might have been averted had medical officials correctly identified the symptoms of a fatal cerebral hemorrhage instead of dismissing them as indicators of what? More… Discuss
Traditional crops and diets around the globe are falling victim to globalization. Over the past five decades, diets have become 36 percent more similar. At the same time, farmers are increasingly giving up traditional crops, like cassava, sorghum, and millet, in favor of things like wheat, rice, soybeans, and sunflowers. This trend of cultivating less diverse food crops poses a threat to food security, as a single pest or disease has the potential to wipe out crops on a mass scale. Furthermore, though these staple crops have played a major role in combating hunger, they are also contributing to the rapid rise of obesity. More… Discuss
Find more beautiful instrumental music by Chris Geith:
Bike Week is the largest motorcycle meet in the world, held for 10 days in Daytona Beach, Florida. The highlight of the week is the Daytona 200 race, which attracts competitors from all over the world. Other races include a three-hour U.S. Endurance Championship race and vintage motorcycle races on Classics Day. These events take place in the Daytona Beach Municipal Stadium and on the Daytona International Speedway. Another popular feature of the week is a parade of over 5,000 motorcycles, and concerts and trade shows are held throughout the week. More… Discuss
Bonsai, Japanese for “tray planting,” refers both to the art of cultivating dwarf trees and to trees grown by this method. Such trees are not naturally miniature—they are kept small with cultivation methods like pruning and tying branches with wire to “train” them. The art originated in China but has been developed primarily by the Japanese. Bonsai may live for a century or more and are passed from generation to generation as valued heirlooms. What harmed many of Japan’s bonsai trees in 1923? More…Discuss
A report out of the EU contains some disturbing statistics relating to violence against women, finding that about a third of women in the EU—some 62 million women—have been subjected to physical or sexual violence since the age of 15. As incidents of this nature are widely underreported, the rate of victimization could actually be even higher than this survey reveals. Surprisingly, Denmark, found in a UN study last year to be the happiest country in the world and a nation noted for its progressive attitudes toward women, has the highest rate of reported violence against women in the EU, with 52 percent of the women interviewed reporting abuse. More… Discuss
Antonín Dvořák – Slavonic Dances, Op. 46
1. No.1 in C major 4’00
2. No.2 in E minor 6’00
3. No.3 in A flat major 5’22
4. No.4 in F major 7’59
5. No.5 in A major 3’16
6. No.6 in D major 5’15
7. No.7 in C minor 3’34
8. No.8 in G minot 4’05
Feastday: March 6
1380 – 1447
Colette was the daughter of a carpenter named DeBoilet at CorbyAbbey in Picardy, France. She was born on January 13, christened Nicolette, and called Colette. Orphaned at seventeen, she distributed her inheritance to the poor. She became a Franciscan tertiary, and lived at Corby as a solitary. She soon became well known for her holiness and spiritual wisdom, but left her cell in 1406 in response to a dream directing her to reform the Poor Clares. She received the Poor Clares habit from Peter de Luna, whom the French recognized as Pope under the name of Benedict XIII, with orders to reform the Order and appointing her Superiorof all convents she reformed. Despite great opposition, she persisted in her efforts. She founded seventeen convents with the reformed rule and reformed several older convents. She was reknowned for her sanctity, ecstacies, and visions of the Passion, and prophesied her own death in her convent at Ghent, Belgium. A branch of the Poor Clares is still known as the Collettines. She was canonized in 1807. Her feast day is March 6th.
Learn interesting facts and tidbits about the beloved St. Patrick.
In 1836, a garrison of Texans took a stand against the Mexican Army at a Franciscan mission in San Antonio, named after the grove of cottonwood trees (alamo in Spanish) that surrounded it. Led by William Barret Travis, the band of volunteers was beseiged for 13 days by Mexican soldiers. Travis refused to surrender, and the Alamo was overrun on the morning of March 6. Only women and children survived. The heroic action at the Alamo gave the Texans time to organize the forces necessary to save their independence movement. More…
Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930)
The periodic table is a tabular display of all known chemical elements arranged according to the periodic law discovered by Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev. The elements are arranged in columns and rows according to increasing atomic number, which is defined as the number of protons in the nucleus of an atom. The table summarizes the major properties of the elements and enables predictions to be made about their behavior. How many elements currently appear on the periodic table? More…
A virus that for 30,000 years lay dormant in the permafrostof Siberia has been revived by scientists. Called Pithovirus sibericum, it is not only the oldest virus ever revived but also the largest virus ever found, measuring 1.5 micrometers in length. Though this virus poses little threat to humans—it infects amoebas—researchers fear that other long-dormant viruses will be unleashed as the permafrost continues to thaw and the area is mined for resources. More…
St. John Joseph of the Cross was born about the middle of the seventeenth century in the beautiful island of Ischia, near Naples. From his childhood he was the model of virtue, and in his sixteenth year he entered the Franciscan Order of the Strictest Observance, or Reform of St. Peter of Alcantara. Such was the edification he gave in his Order, that within three years after his profession he was sent to found a monastery in Piedmont. He became a priest out of obedience, and obtained, as it seems, an inspired knowledge of moral theology. With his superiors’ permission he built another convent and drew up rules for that community, which were confirmed by the Holy See. He afterward became Master of Novices. Sometimes later he was made provincial of the province of Naples, erected in the beginning of the eighteenth century by Clement XI. He labored hard to establish in Italy that branch of his Order which the sovereign Pontiff had separated from the one in Spain. In his work he suffered much, and became the victim of numerous calumnies. However, the saint succeeded in his labors, endeavoring to instill in the hearts of his subjects, the double spirit of contemplation and penance bequeathed to his Reform by St. Peter of Alcantara. St. John Joseph exemplified the most sublime virtues, especially humility and religious discipline. He also possessed numerous gifts in the supernatural order, such as those of prophesy and miracles. Finally,consumed by labors for the glory of God, he was called to his reward. Stricken with apoplexy, he died an octogenarian in his convent at Naples on March 5, 1734. His feast day is March 5th.
In the island nation of Vanuatu, many islands have rejected European influence and instead prefer to live according to their traditional customs. While these customs vary widely throughout the islands, village life,subsistence farming, a belief in magic, and rule by chiefs are common. In 1977, a National Council of Chiefs was set up by the government to ensure the preservation of traditional ways of life. These tribal chiefs are honored on March 5 of each year; celebratory activities on this day include sporting events, carnivals, agricultural fairs, and arts festivals. More… Discuss
Goodnight was a cattleman known as the father of the Texas Panhandle. As a young man, he joined the Texas Rangers and became a noted scout and Indian fighter. Eventually, he turned to ranching and cattle driving. In 1866, he and Oliver Loving laid out the Goodnight-Loving cattle trail that extended from Texas through New Mexico and Colorado and into Wyoming. He later cofounded the million-acre JA Ranch in Texas, where he crossed Angus cattle with buffalo to produce what animal? More… Discuss
The Britannia Bridge spans the Menai Strait, connecting the Isle of Anglesey to the Welsh mainland. Though the bridge as it now stands comprises two concrete decks—one for trains and the other for motor vehicles—it was originally built as a single-tier, wrought-iron, tubular span reserved exclusively for rail traffic. Designed by British civil engineer Robert Stephenson, son of famed locomotive builder George Stephenson, the original bridge stood for 120 years before who set it on fire? More… Discus