ON THIS DAY: December 5, 2017

December 5th is

Comfort Food Day

Repeal of Prohibition Day *

Sacher-Torte Day *

World Soil Day *


MORE! Cicero, Joan Didion and José Carreras, click



Alpine European Christian tradition– Krampus, impish companion of St. Nick, punishes bad children on eve of the feast of Saint Nicholas (December 6)

Austria –
Ischgl: Krampus Run
Klagenfurt: Krampusnacht

Thailand –
Father’s Day/King’s Birthday


On This Day in HISTORY

63 BC – Marcus Tullius Cicero gives the fourth and final of his Catiline Orations in the Roman Senate, purporting to expose a plot to overthrow the government led by Lucius Segius Catilina and his allies – the truth of Cicero’s allegations have been debated by scholars ever since

1484 – Pope Innocent VIII issues the Summis desiderantes affectibus, a papal bull that deputizes inquisitors Heinrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger to root out alleged witchcraft in Germany. While much of the bull dealt with jurisdictional issues in Germany, it endorses belief in the existence of witches, and approval for the Inquisition to proceed in “correcting, imprisoning, punishing and chastising” such persons “according to their deserts” – By confirming witchcraft as a spiritual and secular crime, it added fuel to the fires that were to come with the expansion the Inquisition

Witch Burning in Schiltach Germany – 1533

1492 – Christopher Columbus becomes the first European to set foot on the island of ‘Hispaniola’ (now Haiti and the Dominican Republic)

1496 – King Manuel I of Portugal issues a decree of expulsion of “heretics”

1687 – Francesco Geminiani born, Italian composer and music theorist

1766 – In London, James Christie holds his first sale, the beginning of his auction house

1791 – Composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart dies in Vienna, Austria, at the age of 35

1792 – President George Washington and V.P. John Adams are re-elected

1822 – Elizabeth Cabot Agassiz born, American naturalist; co-founder in 1894 and first president (1900-1903) of Radcliffe College; co-founder with husband Louis Agassiz of the Anderson School of Natural History; accompanied her husband on expeditions to Brazil; with Mary Fairfax Somerville and Maria Mitchell, one of the first three women members of the American Philosophical Society

1830 – Christina Rossetti born, English poet and author

1831 – Former U.S. President John Quincy Adams takes his seat in the House of Representatives

1832 – Apprentice chef Franz Sacher, filling in for head chef, who is ill, creates his delicious Sacher-Torte for Austrian Chancellor Klemens von Metternich and his guests, who were all impressed and delighted

1847 – Jefferson Davis is elected to the U.S. senate from Mississippi

1848 – In a message to the U. S. Congress, President James K. Polk confirms the discovery of gold in California

1854 – Aaron Allen patents a folding chair

1879 – Clyde Vernon Cessna born, founder of the Cessna Aircraft Corporation

1890 – Fritz Lang born, Austrian-American director-producer-screenwriter

1896 – Ann Nolan Clark born, American writer and teacher who taught at the Tesuque Pueblo school, a first through fourth grade one-room-schoolhouse, for 25 years; many of her stories were inspired by her students; the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs published 15 of the books based on her Pueblo experiences; In My Mother’s House, illustrated by Pueblo artist Velino Herrera, was a 1942 Caldecott Honor book

1901 – Walt Disney born, American animator-director- producer-screenwriter, co-founder of the Walt Disney Company

1912 – Kate Simon born in Poland, best-selling American travel writer, and autobiographer, whose first volume, Bronx Primitive: Portraits in a Childhood was nominated for a National Book Critics Award

1931 – Britain outlaws the sending of arms to Ireland; and Joseph Stalin orders Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Saviour destroyed

1932 – German-born Swiss physicist Albert Einstein is granted an American visa

1932 – Little Richard born, American singer-songwriter-pianist

1933 – Repeal of Prohibition Day * – Utah and Nevada are the final two states to vote for ratification of the 21st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which repeals the 18th Amendment, ending Prohibition 

1934 – Joan Didion born, American author and screenwriter; noted for novel, Play It As It Plays, and The Year of Magical Thinking, which won the 2005 National Book Award for Nonfiction

1935 – In Montebello, CA, the first commercial hydroponics operation is launched

1946 – José Carreras born, Spanish tenor and opera star

1951 – First push button-controlled garage opens in Washington, DC

1953 – Gwen Lister born in South Africa, Namibian journalist, publisher, apartheid opponent and freedom of the press activist; co-founder of  the independent weekly  Windhoek Observer; won the 1992 International Press Freedom Award from the Committee to Protect Journalists, and the 2004 Courage in Journalism Award from the International Women’s Media Foundation

1955 – The American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations merge and form the AFL–CIO

1955 – E. D. Nixon and Rosa Parks lead the Montgomery Bus Boycott

1957 – Sukarno expels all Dutch people from Indonesia

1958 – The Preston By-pass, the UK’s first stretch of motorway, opens to traffic for the first time (now part of the M6 and M55)

1961 – Laura Flanders born in England, American-based broadcast journalist and non—fiction author; founding director of the women’s desk at the media watch group FAIR (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting)

1962 – The U.S. and the Soviet Union agree to cooperate in peaceful uses of outer space

1963 – Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards born, the unlikely U.K. Olympic Skier

1964 – Lloyd J. Old discovered the first linkage between the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) and disease—mouse leukemia—beginning recognition of MHC’s importance in the immune response

1971 – The Soviet Union, at U.N. Security Council, vetoes a resolution calling for a cease-fire in hostilities between India and Pakistan over Kashmir

1974 – The BBC broadcasts the last episode of Monty Python’s Flying Circus

1977 – Egypt’s peace negotiations with Israel cause a rift with other Arab countries; diplomatic relations are broken with Syria, Libya, Algeria, Iraq and South Yemen

1978 – The Soviet Union signs a “friendship treaty” with the Republic of Afghanistan

1979 – Sonia Johnson is formally excommunicated by the Mormon Church for her outspoken support of the proposed Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution

1986 – The Soviet Union says it will abide by the SALT II treaty limits on nuclear weapons, in spite of the decision by the U.S. to exceed them

1983 – Dissolution of the Military Junta in Argentina

1988 – Televangelist Jim Bakker and former aide Richard Dortch are indicted by a federal grand jury in North Carolina on fraud and conspiracy charges

1992 – Russian President Boris Yeltsin keeps the power to appoint Cabinet ministers, defeating a constitutional amendment that would have put his team of reformers under the control of Russia’s Congress

2002 – The International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) launches World Soil Day * to highlight soil as a critical component of the global ecosystem, and its enormous role in food security

2004 – The Civil Partnership Act comes into effect in the United Kingdom, and the first civil partnership is registered there, granting the same legal rights and responsibilities as civil marriage to same-sex couples

2006 – New York City becomes the first U.S. city to ban artificial trans fats in restaurant foods. The NYC Board of Health gives restaurants until July 2008 to eliminate trans fats from all the food they serve

2011 – A posthumous Amy Winehouse album, Lioness: Hidden Treasures, is released in the U.K. featuring unreleased songs and demos

2014 – NASA’s Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) is launched for a four hour test flight, which lands on target in the Pacific Ocean


About wordcloud9

Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for over 50 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband.
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4 Responses to ON THIS DAY: December 5, 2017

  1. Malisha says:

    wow, that witch-burning painting is so pornographic!

    • wordcloud9 says:

      And that one is a lot less graphic than several others I saw! – There seems to have been a whole sub-genre in porno of bare-bosomed witches burning.

      • Malisha says:

        Not just her body, but the snuff quality and the sexual content. The man aiming his powerful weapon at her genitals; her bound up and fire behind her, her arms raised and “disarmed.” The impression is sex-and-torture-to-death-by-powerful-pointy-male-thing.

        • wordcloud9 says:

          I know – very creepy. And I think very much part of the whole “kill the witches” motivation. So many of the women who were accused simply didn’t conform enough to the “woman’s role” in their societies to satisfy the inquisitors – or their neighbors.

Comments are closed.