Tag Archives: Western Europe

Europe’s “Tuberculosis Capital” May Surprise You


Europe’s “Tuberculosis Capital” May Surprise You

Tuberculosis (TB), the lung disease that was among the most common causes of death before the advent of antibiotics, is still prevalent in England, with London known as Europe’s “TB capital.” In an effort to combat one of the highest TB rates in western Europe—nearly five times that of the US—British health officials launched an 11.5 million pound ($17.4 million) plan this week to increase TB screening and treatment. Among the challenges facing the initiative are the highly contagious nature of TB—which is transmitted simply through coughing and sneezing—and new, drug-resistant strains of the illness. More… Discuss

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Cave Paintings Redraw History of Human Art


Cave Paintings Redraw History of Human Art

Experts are rethinking the theory of the origins of human artistic activity after cave paintings on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi were dated to 40,000 years ago. Until now, it had been thought that cave art emerged in Western Europe about 40,000 years ago, but it would seem that it in fact emerged simultaneously in various regions of the globe. The paintings in question contain stencils of human hands and naturalistic depictions of animals. More… Discuss

News: Norway Best Country for Older People


Norway Best Country for Older People

Growing old is never easy, but for some it is easier than others, and where they live has a lot to do with it. An index evaluating the quality of life of older adults in 96 countries around the globe has ranked Norway the best country in the world for older people, followed closely by Sweden, Switzerland, Canada, and Germany. Australia, Western Europe, and North America also rank high on the list. The index weighs factors such as income security, health, personal capability, and whether the elderly live in an “enabling environment.” More… Discuss

Saint of the day, July 20, 2014: St. Margaret of Antioh


Image of St. Margaret of AntiochNothing certain is known of her, but according to her untrustworthy legend, she was the daughter of a pagan priest at Antioch in Pisidia. Also known as Marina, she was converted to Christianity, whereupon she was driven from home by her father. She became a shepherdess and when she spurned the advances of Olybrius, the prefect, who was infatuated with her beauty, he charged her with being a Christian. He had her tortured and then imprisoned, and while she was in prison she had an encounter with the devil in the form of a dragon. According to the legend, he swallowed her, but the cross she carried in her hand so irritated his throat that he was forced to disgorge her (she is patroness of childbirth). The next day, attempts were made to execute her by fire and then by drowning, but she was miraculously saved and converted thousands of spectators witnessing her ordeal-all of whom were promptly executed. Finally, she was beheaded. That she existed and was martyred are probably true; all else is probably fictitious embroidery and added to her story, which was immensely popular in the Middle Ages, spreading from the East all over Western Europe. She is one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers, and hers was one of the voices heard by Joan of Arc. Her feast day is July 20th.

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this day in the yesteryear: D-Day: The Allies Land on Normandy Beaches (1944)


D-Day: The Allies Land on Normandy Beaches (1944)

The Battle of Normandy during World War II was fought between the German forces occupying Western Europe and the invading Allied armies. More than 156,000 troops crossed the English Channel during the initial invasion, which remains the largest amphibious landing in history. The campaign continued for more than two months and concluded with the liberation of Paris. Of the Allies’ five landing points, Omaha Beach proved to be the most deadly. How many troops were killed there that day? More… Discuss

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