Lighting a candle in toxic air.
August 26: Joseph-Michel Montgolfier (1748)
It was on this date, August 26, 1740, that French paper-maker and chemist Joseph-Michel Montgolfier, was born, one of 16 children of a prosperous paper manufacturer. With his younger brother Jacques-Étienne, the Montgolfier brothers conducted experiments with paper and fabric bags filled with smoke and hot air, which eventually led to their co-invention of the […]
August 22: Claude Debussy
Claude Debussy (1862) It was on this date, August 22, 1862, that French Impressionist composer Claude Debussy was born Achille-Claude Debussy, the eldest of five children, in St. Germain-en-Laye. A prodigy, he entered the Paris Conservatoire at the age of 10 and by 1902 his Prélude à L’après-midi d’un faune (Prelude to the Afternoon of […]
August 16: James Cameron (1954)
It was on this date, August 16, 1954, that Canadian film director James Cameron was born in Kapuskasing, Ontario. Director of The Terminator (1984), Aliens (1986), The Abyss (1989), Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), True Lies (1994), Titanic (1997), and Avatar (2009), Cameron has been nominated for six Academy Awards overall and won three for […]
August 12: George Soros (1930)
It was on this date, August 12, 1930, that Hungarian-born American multi-billionaire, business magnate, investor and philanthropist George Soros was born Schwartz György in Budapest. His family name was changed in 1936 from Schwartz to Soros because of systemic anti-Semitism. In 1947, Soros emigrated from Hungary to England. Soros earned a BSc in philosophy in […]
August 8: Eating God
Quam singulari (1910): Christian Communion It was on this date, August 8, 1910, that "Quam singulari," a decree of the Sacred Congregation of the Sacraments, specified the age at which children are to be admitted to first Communion in the Roman Catholic Church. The Catholic Encyclopedia, the authority on the subject, says that conditions for […]
August 3: Étienne Dolet
Étienne Dolet (1509) It was on this date, August 3, 1546, that the French scholar and printer of books critical of religion, Étienne Dolet, was burned alive for his opinions. Dolet was born in Orléans in 1509, possibly also on 3 August, and possibly into a family of wealth and rank. Dolet studied in Paris […]
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