Monday, 2 September 2013


“When the mind is thinking it is talking to itself.” – Plato

Today is the anniversary of the birthday of:
Georg Böhm
, German composer (1661);
John Howard
, prison reformer (1726);
, last queen of Hawaii (1838);
Henry George
, economist (1839);
Wilhelm Ostwald
, Nobel laureate (1909) chemist (1853);
Allan Drury
, author (1918);
Jimmy Connors
, tennis player (1952).

The gladiolus, Gladiolus spp, is the birthday flower for this day.  The name is derived from the Latin gladius, meaning “sword”, in reference to the sword-shaped leaves.  The gladiolus symbolises readiness for battle and in the language of flowers means: “You pierce my heart”.

On this day in 490 BC, Pheidippides ran the first Marathon to announce the victory of the Greeks over the Persians in Marathon, Attica, Greece.  He dropped dead from exhaustion promptly afterwards.  The tradition of running the Marathon in the Olympic Games is a commemoration of that historic victory and the original fatal run.

In 1666 on this day the Great Fire London started and lasted for 3 days.

Today is Vietnam’s Proclamation of Independence Day (since 1954). Vietnam was part of French Indochina and only gained its independence in 1954. Decades of internal discord, civil war mixed with external interference and tragic armed conflicts have hampered its development. The country has an area of 330,000 square km and a population of about 70 million people. It stretches along the South China Sea down a mountainous backbone and encompassing two river deltas: The Song Hong in the North and the Mekong to the South. Rice, coffee and rubber are the main crops with reserves of coal, anthracite, lignite, tin, iron ore and extensive rainforests beginning to be developed. The climate is monsoonal with moderate rainfall. The capital city is Hanoi with other major cities including Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang, Hué, Rach Gia, Nha Trang and Haiphong.

1 comment:

  1. What an interesting post. I did not know about the marathon's origins!