Freethought Almanac

Lighting a candle in toxic air.
2012-01-07
January 7: Heidi Fleiss Sent to Prison (1997): Religion v. Prostitution

It was on this date, January 7, 1997, in Los Angeles, that Heidi Fleiss, known as the “Hollywood Madam,” was sentenced to 37 months in prison for cheating on her taxes and laundering prostitution profits. Fleiss spent 21 months in a federal prison in Dublin, California, and was released in 1999. There was talk of […]

Read More
2012-01-06
January 6: Joan of Arc (1412)

It was on this date, January 6, 1412, that Jeanne d’Arc, or Joan of Arc, was born at Domrémy in Champagne, France. Joan grew up on a French farm during the Hundred Years War, the youngest of a family of five, and never learned to write or read. Her story is compelling as drama. Did […]

Read More
2012-01-05
January 5: Anabaptist Felix Manz Executed by "Baptism" (1527)

It was on this date, January 5, 1527, that Swiss Anabaptist reformer Felix Manz was drowned in punishment for preaching adult baptism — as opposed to the infant baptism most Protestant sects approved. That he was drowned for punishment in the Limmat, near the current Rathaus bridge in Zürich, seems somehow ironic, if unjust, for […]

Read More
2012-01-05
January 5: Umberto Eco (1932)

It was on this date, January 5, 1932, that Italian philologist and writer Umberto Eco was born in Alessandria, in the Italian province of Piedmont. He works as a professor of semiotics at the University of Bologna, teaching the study of signs and their interpretation, and their function in syntax, semantics and literary theory. Eco […]

Read More
2012-01-04
January 4: Fabian Society Founded (1884)

It was on this date, January 4, 1884, that the longest-lived, continuously operating Socialist organization, the Fabian Society, was founded in London. Founders Frank Podmore and Edward Pease envisioned a society opposed to the revolutionary theory of Marxism, holding instead that social reforms and Socialistic public policy can be instituted through “permeation”: that is, through […]

Read More
2012-01-03
January 3: Marcus Tullius Cicero (106 BCE)

It was on this date, January 3, 106 BCE, that Roman statesman and orator Marcus Tullius Cicero was born in Arpinum, which is modern Arpino, Italy. Having chosen parents not among the ruling class in oligarchic Rome, Cicero rose through the political ranks – quaestor, aedile, praetor, and consul – much as one would today: […]

Read More
2012-01-03
January 3: Franz Cumont (1868)

It was on this date, January 3, 1868, that Belgian archaeologist and philologist Franz Valery-Marie Cumont was born in Aalst, Belgium. He studied at the Royal Athenaeum in Brussels, then at the University of Ghent, and earned his doctor of philosophy and letters in 1887 at the age of 19. By age 24 (1892) Cumont […]

Read More
2012-01-02
January 2: Isaac Asimov (1920)

It was on this date, January 2, 1920, that American science and science-fiction writer Isaac Asimov was born Isaak Yudovich Ozimov in Petrovichi, Russia. He was educated in Orthodox Judaism, but religion had little influence throughout Asimov’s childhood. His father “didn’t even bother to have me bar mitzvahed at the age of thirteen,” Asimov remarked […]

Read More
2012-01-01
January 1: Huldrych Zwingli (1484)

It was on this date, January 1, 1484, that Swiss Protestant reformer Huldrych Zwingli was born at Wildhaus near Zürich, Switzerland, the son of a town magistrate whose brother was the town priest. Zwingli’s early religious education was influenced by the teachings of Thomas Wyttenbach (1472-1526). He was ordained to the priesthood, became a formidable […]

Read More
2012-01-01
January 1: Sir James George Frazer (1854)

It was on this date, January 1, 1854, that British anthropologist, folklorist and author of The Golden Bough, Sir James George Frazer was born in Brandon Place, Glasgow, Scotland. The Frazer family were devout followers of the Free Church of Scotland, under whose strict doctrines James was raised. Frazer graduated in Classics at Trinity College, […]

Read More
1 3 4 5

Ronald Bruce Meyer

Our Fearless Leader.


Daily Almanac

October 10: Julia Sweeney (1959)

It was on this date, October 10, 1959, that American actress, comedian and author Julia Sweeney was born in Spokane, Washington. From her start with the improvisational comedy troupe The Groundlings, Sweeney was discovered in 1989 by “Saturday Night Live” producer Lorne Michaels and became a featured player on the TV show from 1990 to […]



Daily Almanac

Coming soon!

Follow me on twitter

@ 2020 Free Thought Almanac