Freethought Almanac

Lighting a candle in toxic air.
2011-09-27
September 27: Paul III Fails to Reform the Church

Pope Paul III Approves the Jesuits (1540) On this date, September 27, in 1540, Pope Paul III officially approved the Society of Jesus – the Jesuits – through his encyclical, Regimini militantis ecclesiae. Born Alessandro Farnese on 29 February 1468 in Rome, Paul III was pope for 15 years, from 12 October 1534 until his […]

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2011-09-26
September 26: Charles Bradlaugh

Charles Bradlaugh (1833) It was on this date, September 26, 1833, that Charles Bradlaugh was born in Hoxton, London. At the age of twelve his father's employer hired him on as an office boy. But Bradlaugh began reading the writings of Richard Carlile, who had been imprisoned under English law for blasphemy and seditious libel […]

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2011-09-24
September 24: Horace Walpole

Horace Walpole (1717) It was on this date, September 24, 1717, that English man of letters Horace Walpole was born in London. The youngest son of England's longest-ruling Prime Minister, Robert Walpole (who was most likely an Atheist), Horace's original first name was Horatio. Educated according to his social station, at Eton and King's College, […]

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2011-09-23
September 23: Ani DiFranco

Ani DiFranco (1970) It was on this date, September 23, 1970, that recording artist and entrepreneur Ani DiFranco was born in Buffalo, New York. She got her first lessons in performance from Buffalo bar talent, which left her with no illusions about the music business. DiFranco began singing and playing acoustic guitar before she was […]

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2011-09-22
September 22: The Angel and the Mormon

The Angel Moroni Appears to Joseph Smith (1827) It was on this date, September 22, 1827, that the resurrected being described as the angel Moroni appeared to Joseph Smith and eventually revealed the location of golden tablets containing the Book of Mormon beneath a hill in Palmyra, New York. Moroni is supposed to have been […]

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2011-09-21
September 21: H. G. Wells

H. G. Wells (1866) It was on this date, September 21, 1866, that English author Herbert George Wells, who wrote about 100 books, half of them novels, as H.G. Wells, was born in Bromley, Kent. About his early days he said, I was indeed a prodigy of Early Impiety....There was a time when I believed […]

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2011-09-20
September 20: Upton Sinclair

Upton Sinclair (1878) It was on this date, September 20, 1878, that American writer Upton Sinclair was born in Baltimore, Maryland. In a 67-year career, Sinclair published over 90 books, mostly novels with a social reform theme. But he began life as a religious boy – it is said his two great heroes were Jesus […]

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2011-09-19
September 19: Religious Persuasion by Torture

Giles Corey Pressed to Death (1692): Churches and Torture It was on this date, September 19, 1692, during the Salem Witch Trials in Massachusetts colony, that sentence was carried out on Giles Corey (or Choree or Cory) that he be pressed to death for witchcraft. Corey was a prosperous farmer and 80 years old – […]

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2011-09-18
September 18: Roman Polanski

Roman Polanski (1933) It was on this date, September 18, 1933, that director Roman Polanski was born Rajmund Roman Thierry Polański in Paris to Polish Jewish parents, neither of whom practiced their religion seriously. The family got caught in Poland as the Nazis overran the country. Polanski's mother, a Roman Catholic, died in the concentration […]

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2011-09-17
September 17: Marquis de Condorcet

Marquis de Condorcet (1743) It was on this date, September 17, 1743, that French mathematician and political philosopher Marie Jean Antoine Nicolas Caritat, Marquis de Condorcet, was born in Ribemont, Picardy, France. His father died early, so his mother, a very devout woman, had Condorcet educated at Jesuit Colleges in Reims and at the Collège […]

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Ronald Bruce Meyer

Our Fearless Leader.


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November 3: Ludovic Kennedy

Sir Ludovic Kennedy (1919) It was on this date, November 3, 1919, that British writer and broadcaster Ludovic Henry Coverley Kennedy was born in Edinburgh, Scotland. Ludovic Kennedy, the son of a sea captain who died in battle, saw action himself in World War II in the Royal Navy, then embarked on a successful career […]



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