It was on this date, February 24, 1893, the Italian librettist and composer Arrigo Boito was born. Boito is primarily remembered as librettist for Giuseppe Verdi’s operas “Otello” (1887) and “Falstaff” (1893), and for his own 1868 opera, “Mefistofele.” It was through “Mefistofele,” based on Goethe’s “Faust,” that Boito infuriated the Italian clergy through his frivolous treatment of religion – not the least for making the villain, the devil, into the most interesting character.
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Originally published February 2003 by Ronald Bruce Meyer.
Robert Green Ingersoll (1833) It was on this date, August 11, 1833, that the most eloquent advocate of Freethought, Robert Green Ingersoll, was born in Dresden, New York, the son of a Congregationalist minister. In Peoria, Illinois, he trained in the law before enlisting in the Union Army during the Civil War, where he was […]