Tag Archives: French Revolution

today’s birthday: Miguel Hidalgo (1753)


Miguel Hidalgo (1753)

A national hero in Mexico, where the state of Hidalgo bears his name, Miguel Hidalgo was a priest and revolutionary leader who is regarded as the founder of the Mexican War of Independence movement. Influenced by the French Revolution, he launched a revolt against Spain in the early 19th century. Hidalgo led the rebels to several early victories but was captured, defrocked, and executed by firing squad along with other revolutionary leaders in 1811. What was done with their remains? More… Discuss

today’s birthday Olympe de Gouges (1748)


Olympe de Gouges (1748)

Born Marie Gouze, de Gouges was a French author whose feminist writings during the French Revolution demanded the same rights for French women that French men were demanding. In 1791, alarmed that the new constitution did not address woman’s suffrage, she wrote Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen, challenging the practice of male authority and the notion of male-female inequality. Why was she executed by guillotine during the Reign of Terror? More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Karl Marx (1818)


Karl Marx (1818)

Though largely ignored during his lifetime, Marx was perhaps one of the most influential figures in history. His ideas, particularly those he expounded in his two most notable works, The Communist Manifesto and Das Kapital, have become the core intellectual tradition for communism and socialism, and many scholars consider him the founder of economic history and sociology. His philosophy significantly influenced communist thinking for the next century. What anarchist was his enemy? More… Discuss

quotation: The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read. Mark Twain


The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read.

Mark Twain (1835-1910) Discuss

today’s birthday: Nostradamus (1503)


Nostradamus (1503)

Nostradamus was a French astrologer and physician reputed to have effected remarkable cures during outbreaks of the Black Plague. His book of prophecies, Les Propheties, consists of vaguely phrased, rhymed quatrains grouped into sets of 100, called “Centuries.” Enthusiasts credit Nostradamus with foreseeing the rise of Hitler, the French Revolution, the atomic bomb, and the destruction of the World Trade Center. What reason do skeptics give for dismissing these claims? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: King Louis XVI of France Tried for Treason (1792) (I say: read, read, read!)


King Louis XVI of France Tried for Treason (1792)

Louis XVI was King of France from 1774 to 1792. Shy, dull, and corpulent, he proved unsuited to the task of navigating the complex social and political conflict smoldering in France. His failure to resolve the country’s enormous debt touched off a chain of events that culminated in the outbreak of revolution. In 1792, the monarchy was abolished and Louis tried for treason. Found guilty, he was guillotined on January 21, 1793. What supposedly foiled his attempted escape from France in 1791? More… Discuss

Madame Tussauds


Madame Tussauds

A skilled wax sculptor, Marie Tussaud served as art tutor to Louis XVI’s sister until the French Revolution began. During the Reign of Terror, Tussaud made death masks from heads—often those of her friends—freshly severed by the guillotine. She moved to Britain with her collection of wax models, and, in 1835, established a museum that remains a principal tourist attraction, now known as Madame Tussauds. One of its main attractions is the Chamber of Horrors. What did it originally include? More… Discuss

Just a thought: Take a full sensorial visit in nature:… by George-B


Just a thought: “Take a full sensorial visit in nature: No, not the tunnel type, meant to exclude senses but one, rather a total immersion in nature: see everything, hear everything, experience everything, without judgement, with the sole purpose of…being in that moment!” -George-B

today’s birthday: Marquis de Lafayette (1757)


Marquis de Lafayette (1757)

Lafayette was a French aristocrat most famous for his participation in the American and French revolutions. He fought with distinction in the American Revolution, becoming a close friend of George Washington. Upon returning to France, “the Hero of Two Worlds” turned his attentions to his home country, helping draft the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen and pushing for a constitutional monarchy. Lafayette is one of only seven people to have been accorded what honor by the US? More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770)


Hegel

Hegel (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770)

Hegel was an influential German philosopher who developed the Hegelian dialectic, according to which a thesis, such as “being,” inevitably generates its antithesis, “not-being.” The interaction of the two forms a synthesis, “becoming,” which, in turn, becomes a new thesis that generates an antithesis, and so on. He used the dialectic to explain everything from nature to history, interpreting the French Revolution as a thesis that generated its antithesis, known as what period in French history? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Maximilien Robespierre Guillotined (1794)


Maximilien Robespierre Guillotined (1794)

Known as “the Incorruptible” for his emphasis on civic morality, Robespierre became one of the leading figures of the French Revolution. He was an influential member of the Committee of Public Safety, the political body that controlled France during the bloody revolutionary period known as the “Reign of Terror.” However, popular discontent with the committee’s brutal measures soon grew, and Robespierre was guillotined in the coup of 9 Thermidor. What might have been his last words? More… Discuss

make music part of your life series: Leoš Janáček: Lachian Dances (1889/90)


[youtube.com/watch?v=wOJdsMcmpDw]

Leoš Janáček: Lachian Dances (1889/90)

Leoš Janáček (1854 – 1928), perhaps more than any other composer of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, including Gustav Mahler and Sergey Rahmaninov, represents a puzzling case in point as for the cultural and spiritual seismic shift that took place between the 1870s/’80s and the 1920s. He comes from a world already shaken by the French Revolution and all subsequent revolutions up to 1848, yet still sufficiently alive so to remember the old ways: fairy tales and folk legends, style, distinction, Monarchy, Catholicism. This last quarter of the 19th century was at the same time the pontificate of Pope Leo XIII, who indeed fought like a lion in order to ward off the meanwhile 360° onslaught, open and hidden, against the old order and the Catholic Church. However, Janáček, like so many of his generation, was drawn into those false promises of a “new era”, whether pan-Slavic, pantheist, or plain modernist. Still he kept the memories of the old world of his childhood days. His musical oeuvre, especially his folkloristic works, so painfully as well as articulately shows what had been lost – lost forever …

Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra, Bratislava
Ondrej Lenárd, conductor

Recorded at Bratislava on January 29/30, 1990

Taken from the CD: “Janáček: Sinfonietta / Lachian Dances / Taras Bulba”, released by NAXOS. Order that CD here: http://www.amazon.com/Jan%C3%A1cek-Si…
or from your local CD-shop.
_____________________________________

See also the connected blog: http://thecontemplativeobserver.wordp….

La prise de la Bastille (Sketch Guru – my art collection)


Prise de la Bastille (MyArtCollection)

Prise de la Bastille (MyArtCollection) 

I sketch this painting with Sketch Guru on my Android phone 🙂 http://bit.ly/sketchguru

After that, I turned to Fast Stone Image Editor to resize, adjust colors and crop…

 

today’s holiday: Bastille Day (prise de la Bastille)


Bastille Day

Prise de la Bastille Jean-Pierre Houël (1735-1813) – Bibliothèque nationale de France

The Bastille was a 14th-century fortress that became a notorious state prison in Paris. An angry mob assaulted the Bastille—which had come to symbolize the French monarchy‘s oppression of the people—on July 14, 1789, freeing the political prisoners held there and launching the French Revolution. July 14 has been celebrated since that time in France as Fête Nationale, as well as in French territories in the Pacific, with parades, fireworks and dancing in the streets. In Tahiti and the rest of French Polynesia, it is called Tiurai or Heiva, and is celebrated for most of the month. More… Discuss

 

today’s birthday: Paul François Jean Nicolas, Vicomte de Barras (1755)


Paul François Jean Nicolas, Vicomte de Barras (1755)

Barras was a Provençal nobleman who became disenchanted with the royal regime and joined the French Revolution. When, after the fall of the monarchy, a war dictatorship replaced it, Barras played a key role in overthrowing Maximilien Robespierre and ending the Reign of Terror. Eventually given command of the army of the interior and the police, he suppressed a royalist uprising in 1795 by turning the troops over to a young officer in whose marriage he later played a role. Who was this officer? More… Discuss

this day in history: Last Public Execution in France (1939)


Last Public Execution in France (1939)

Eugen Weidmann, a convicted thief, kidnapper, and murderer, was the last person to be publicly executed in France. After his arrest, Weidmann confessed to murdering five people and was sentenced to death. Shortly thereafter, he was beheaded by guillotine. The “hysterical behavior” of spectators at the event was so scandalous that French President Albert Lebrun immediately banned all future public executions. Executions by guillotine in France continued in private until what date? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: France’s Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle Founded (1793)


The Museum of Natural History in the Garden of...

The Museum of Natural History in the Garden of Plants ( Jardin des plantes ), in Paris (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

France’s Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle Founded (1793)

The Jardin des Plantes, the main botanical garden in France, is situated near the left bank of the river Seine in Paris and is home to the Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, France’s museum of natural history, as well as an elaborate rose garden, numerous hothouses, and a zoo. The museum is now a center for research and education. Although it was founded during the French Revolution, the museum was born out of a medicinal plant garden created by what French monarch in 1635? More… Discuss

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This Day in the Yesteryear: Louis XIV of France Moves His Court to Versailles (1682)


This Day in the Yesteryear

 

Louis XIV of France Moves His Court to Versailles (1682)

During his reign, King Louis XIV moved his court and government offices to Versailles. The palace is one of the largest and most lavish ever built. At a time when mirrors were some of the priciest luxury items to acquire, Louis installed an entire hall of them. The grounds feature fountains, reservoirs, sculptures, temples, grottoes, and even two smaller palaces. Louis’s motive for the move is thought to have been a desire to more closely monitor the nobility. Why did he feel this was necessary? More… Discuss

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TODAY’S HOLIDAY: POLISH CONSTITUTION DAY


Polish Constitution Day

May 3, known in Poland as Swieto Trzeciego Maja, is a patriotic legal holiday honoring the nation’s first constitution, adopted in 1791. It introduced fundamental changes in the way Poland was governed, based on the ideas of the French Revolution, and represented an attempt to preserve the country’s independence. Although the May 3rd Constitution (as it was called) represented a great advance for the Polish people, it also aroused the anxieties of neighboring countries and eventually led to theSecond Partition two years later. More… Discuss

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NEWS: BLOOD ON HANDKERCHIEF LIKELY NOT ROYAL


Blood on Handkerchief Likely Not Royal

A handkerchief long thought to be stained with the blood of guillotined French King Louis XVI is likely inauthentic. DNA analysis of the blood on the cloth suggests it most likely belonged to a brown-eyed, average-height person, whereas the king had blue eyes and was quite tall for his time. The genetics also point to French and Italian lineage, while many of Louis XVI’s ancestors came from Germany and Poland. Why then was the handkerchief stored in an elaborately decorated gourd bearing the inscription, “On January 21, Maximilien Bourdaloue dipped his handkerchief in the blood of Louis XVI after his decapitation”? One theory is that a fraudster created the fake relic for money. More… Discuss

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QUOTATION: Victor Hugo “Thought is the labor of the intellect, reverie is its pleasure.”


Thought is the labor of the intellect, reverie is its pleasure.

Victor Hugo (1802-1885) Discuss

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SAINT OF THE DAY April 8: ST. JULIE BILLIART (1751-1816)


SAINT OF THE DAY

April 8 Saint of the Day

ST. JULIE BILLIART
April 8: St. Julie (Julia) Billiart was born in 1751 and died in 1816. As … Read More

April
8
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QUOTATION: Victor Hugo


When grace is joined with wrinkles, it is adorable. There is an unspeakable dawn in happy old age.

Victor Hugo (1802-1885) Discuss

 

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Daniel François Esprit Auber – Ouverture Gustave III (1833)


[youtube.com/watch?v=AtJecfTIGKM&list=TLkvXiF1Ed1uiGJJeLkW_X1G66VTJPhhrI]

 

Daniel François Esprit Auber – Ouverture Gustave III (1833)

 

Daniel François Esprit Auber portrait

Daniel François Esprit Auber portrait (Photo credit: Bergen Public Library)

 

Daniel François Esprit Auber (29 January 1782 — 12/13 May 1871) was a French composer.
Ouverture “Gustave III”, ou “Le bal masqué”
Librettist Eugène Scribe (1791-1861)
English Chamber Orchestra conducted by Richard Bonynge
Paris: E. Troupenas, n.d.(1833). Plate 721.
Reprinted:
New York: Garland, 1980

 

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ARTICLE: IDEOLOGY


Ideology

Though commonly used today, the word “ideology” was born in the highly controversial philosophical and political debates and fights of the French Revolution. French philosopher Antoine Louis Claude, Comte Destutt de Tracy, coined the term in 1796 after having been inspired by John Locke and Etienne de Condillac while imprisoned during the Reign of Terror. He used the word as a label for his “science of ideas.” Who gave it its modern meaning when he used it to rail against political opponents? More… Discuss

 

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: CHARLES-MAURICE DE TALLEYRAND (1754)


Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand (1754)

The prototype of the witty, cynical diplomat, Talleyrand is exalted by some as a savior of Europe and damned by others as an opportunist or traitor. Undisputed, however, is the Frenchman‘s impressive knack for political survival. He held high office from the ancien régime through the Revolution, Napoleon’s rise and fall, the Restoration, and the July Monarchy. He scored his greatest diplomatic triumphs representing France at the Congress of Vienna. What was one of his worst diplomatic failures? More… Discuss

 

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Quotation: Alexandre Dumas about learning and knowledge


To learn is not to know; there are the learners and the learned. Memory makes the one, philosophy the other.

Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870) Discuss

 

Quotation: Charles Dickens


When I talk of eyes, the stars come out! Whose eyes are they? If they are angels’ eyes, why do they look down here and see good men hurt, and only wink and sparkle all the night?

Charles Dickens (1812-1870) Discuss

 

Leoš Janáček: Lachian Dances (1889/90)


Leoš Janáček (1854 – 1928), perhaps more than any other composer of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, including Gustav Mahler and Sergey Rahmaninov, represents a puzzling case in point as for the cultural and spiritual seismic shift that took place between the 1870s/’80s and the 1920s. He comes from a world already shaken by the French Revolution and all subsequent revolutions up to 1848, yet still sufficiently alive so to remember the old ways: fairy tales and folk legends, style, distinction, Monarchy, Catholicism. This last quarter of the 19th century was at the same time the pontificate of Pope Leo XIII, who indeed fought like a lion in order to ward off the meanwhile 360° onslaught, open and hidden, against the old order and the Catholic Church. However, Janáček, like so many of his generation, was drawn into those false promises of a “new era”, whether pan-Slavic, pantheist, or plain modernist. Still he kept the memories of the old world of his childhood days. His musical oeuvre, especially his folkloristic works, so painfully as well as articulately shows what had been lost – lost forever …

 

Today’s Birthday: MARIE THÉRÈSE LOUISE DE SAVOIE-CARIGNAN, PRINCESSE DE LAMBALLE (1749)


Marie Thérèse Louise de Savoie-Carignan, Princesse de Lamballe (1749)

Marie Thérèse was a French aristocrat and confidant of Queen Marie Antoinette, who met with members of the National Assembly in Thérèse’s salon. As the French Revolution escalated, Thérèse attempted to stir English support for the monarchy but was soon imprisoned with the queen. After refusing to oppose the monarchy, she was delivered to a bloodthirsty mob that murdered and mutilated her in the September Massacres of 1792. After her head was cut off, it was placed on a pike and brought where? More… Discuss

 

Today’s Birthday: JACQUES-LOUIS DAVID (1748)


Jacques-Louis David (1748)

The unchallenged painter of the French Revolution, and later the official portraitist to Napoleon, David was the virtual art dictator of France for a generation. His pervasive influence on European art extended beyond painting to determine the course of fashion, interior decoration, and even the development of moral philosophy. Although he was a talented portraitist, David is best known for his paintings of classical, historical, and mythological themes. What are some of his most famous works?More… Discuss

 

Today’s Birthday: POPE PIUS VII (1742)


Pope Pius VII (1742)

Pius VII became pope in 1800, at a time of turmoil for the Catholic Church. A decade earlier, during the early stages of the French Revolution, the National Assembly tried to subordinate the Church to the state. In 1801, Pius and Napoleon negotiated an end to the breach, but relations remained strained. In one notable incident, Napoleon took his crown from the pope’s hands during a ceremony and crowned himself. What unusual headgear did Pius VII allegedly wear during his own coronation and why? More…

 

Today’s Birthday: Madame du Barry (1743)


Madame du Barry (1743) Madame du Barry was the mistress of Louis XV. She was first the mistress of Jean du Barry, who introduced her into Parisian high society. Admired for her beauty, she joined Louis XV’s court in 1769 after a nominal marriage to Jean’s brother, a nobleman, qualified her to be Louis’s official royal mistress. Though she exercised little political influence, her unpopularity contributed to the decline of the prestige of the crown in the early 1770s. What happened to her during the French Revolution? More… Discuss

Today’s Birthday: Alexis de Tocqueville (1805): “Democratically Speaking…Greed, Is Undemocratic…”


Alexis de Tocqueville (1805)

Tocqueville was a French political scientist, historian, and politician. Born into an aristocratic family with ties to the king, his future in government was jeopardized by a revolution in 1830. To distance himself from the trying political situation at home, he embarked on a government-sanctioned mission to the US. Out of it came his best-known work, Democracy in America—the first analytical study of the strengths and weaknesses of US society. What conclusions did Tocqueville draw in it? More… Discuss

My take on this issue:
 “Democratically Speaking…Greed, Is Undemocratic…greed is pathological and antisocial…greed is like the pest, that doesn’t survive its last victim!”

This Day in History: French National Assembly Adopts Civil Constitution of the Clergy (1790)


French National Assembly Adopts Civil Constitution of the Clergy (1790)

The Civil Constitution of the Clergy was an act passed during the French Revolution that subordinated the Roman Catholic Church to the state. Under the act, citizens would elect clergymen and the state would pay their wages. When the National Assembly ordered the clergy to take an oath supporting the Civil Constitution, many refused. The resulting schism within the French church caused many Catholics to turn against the Revolution. What effect did the constitution have on monastic orders? More… Discuss

In the News: Rinderpest, Second Disease Ever to Be Eradicated


Rinderpest, Second Disease Ever to Be Eradicated

For the second time in history, a disease has been entirely eradicated. The first was smallpox in 1980. Now, according to the UN, the world is officially free of rinderpest, also known as cattle plague, a highly contagious viral disease that kills ruminants within days of infection. Because many societies are dependent on cattle, this disease has helped shape the course of human history. Indeed, it is said to have sped the fall of the Roman Empire, contributed to the discontent leading up to the French Revolution, and paved the way for the colonization of Africa. More… Discuss

Today’s Birthday: Jean Jaques Rousseau (1712)


Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712)

Rousseau was a Swiss-French philosopher and writer who had a lasting impact on politics, literature, and education. In particular, he strongly influenced the theories of the French Revolution and the romantics. Many of his ideas stemmed from his belief in the natural goodness of man, who he felt had been warped by society. His Confessions, published posthumously in 1782, was a frank account of his life and was a founding work of autobiography. Why was he forced to flee France in 1762? More… Discuss

This Day In History: The Illuminati (1776)


Founding of the Illuminati (1776)

The Illuminati were members of a rationalistic society founded in Germany by Adam Weishaupt. Having close affinities with the Freemasons and seemingly organized on a Masonic plan, the group was briefly very popular among German rationalists but had limited influence. The Roman Catholic Church, which Weishaupt left in his youth and rejoined before his death, condemned the Illuminati. In 1785, the Bavarian government dissolved the organization. What conspiracy theories involve the Illuminati? More… Discuss

Francis Fukuyama: The Begining Of History


The Beginning of History

As the communist era vanished, he declared history’s end. With the Middle East in revolt and China rising, Francis Fukuyama is back. What is he thinking?
Read the Mr. Fukuyama’s new book!
Find out more about Mr. Fukuyama’s educated views upon human life and civilization, and fate via http://www.newsweek.com/2011/04/10/the-beginning-of-history.html