Thursday, February 7, 2013

Hope your week is going well and you’ve had plenty of reading time.  Today is Thursday so only one more weekday to go before the weekend. We will be having some special features in upcoming blogs, so keep your eye out for hidden treasures!

Some of the writers born on February 7th include:

Sir Thomas More (1478), Thomas Killigrew (1612), Charles Dickens (1812), Laura Ingalls Wilder (1867), Sinclair Lewis (1885), Paul Nizan (1905), Fred Gipson (1908), Gay Talese (1932), Ian Jack (1945), Sammy Johns (1946), Brian Morton (1954), Richard Cook (1957), Matt Ridley (1958), Ashok Banker (1964), Petr Váša (1965) and Cheryl Cosim (1974).

The English novelist, Ann Radcliffe, passed away on this day in 1823. She was a pioneer of the Gothic novel. Her style is romantic in its vivid descriptions of landscapes and long travel scenes, yet the Gothic element is obvious through her use of the supernatural.

It is also the anniversary of the passing of Lawrence Sanders, who left us on this day in 1998. He was an American author who wrote his first novel in 1970, at the age of fifty. He received an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America for best first novel.

On the seventh of February in 1497 the bonfire of the vanities occurred in which supporters of Girolamo Savonarola burned thousands of objects such as cosmetics, art, and books in Florence, Italy.

The 11th Amendment to the United States Constitution was ratified February 7, 1795. This Amendment deals with each state’s sovereign immunity.

On February 7th, 1894 the Cripple Creek miner’s strike, led by the Western Federation of Miners, began in Cripple Creek, Colorado.

A fire in Baltimore, Maryland raged for thirty hours over the course of February 7th and 8th in 1904. It required 1,231 firefighters to bring the blaze under control. It destroyed a major part of central Baltimore, including over 1,500 buildings covering an area of some 140 acres. One reason for the fire’s duration was the lack of national standards in fire-fighting equipment. Although fire engines from nearby cities responded, many could not help because their hose couplings could not fit Balitmore’s hydrants. Building codes were adopted that stressed fireproof materials and efforts to standardize firefighting equipment in the U.S., especially hose couplings.

The first large procession organized by the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS) was the Mud March which happened on February 7, 1907. Over 3,000 women trudged through the cold and the rutty streets of London from Hyde Park to Exeter Hall to advocate for women’s suffrage.

The classic board game Monopoly was invented February 7, 1935.

On February 7, 1940, Pinocchio, the second full length animated Walt Disney film premiered.

Fifty one years ago today the United States banned all Cuban imports and exports.

The Beatles first arrived in the United States on February 7, 1964. Their performance on The Ed Sullivan Show two days after they arrived here would mark the beginning of the British Invasion.

On February 7, 1979, Pluto moved inside of Neptune’s orbit for the first time since either was discovered.

The astronauts Bruce McCandless II and Robert L. Stewart made the first untethered space walk using the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU) as part of the STS-41-B Mission on this day in 1984.

The mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, Ramzi Yousef, was arrested February seventh of 1995 in Islamabad, Pakistan.

Four years ago today the worst natural disaster in Australia’s history, bush fires in Victoria, left 173 dead.

iliad signet

Today we highlight the classic The Illiad by Homer.  We have a few different versions of this in stock including the Signet Classic mass market paperback edition. This is a common required reading title for local schools. Amazon gives the following short description of this novel:

Focusing on the closing days of the Trojan War, this novel incorporates the same epic cast of gods and warriors from The Odyssey. From the kidnapping of Helen from her Greek home to the death of Achilles’s companion, the battle rages between two warring nations and the gods which protect both sides. Thrilling in content, but literate and subtle in its meaning, The Iliad remains a classic among classics.
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Disclaimer: Much of the information in this blog is taken directly from Wikipedia and Amazon.   Images have been taken from various sources around the World Wide Web.

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