Copyright © Louise Bostock 2007-2013. Please give credit where credit is due.

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Festa della Repubblica

Warm and sunny with a gentle breeze.


Today is 2nd June. Republic Day in Italy, and a holiday, which is why I'm at home kicking my heels with two rebellious whirlwinds and a large number of tourists about the place.

But 2nd June seems to have been quite a day through history. As if everyone was finally awake after their winter stupor, the springtime sowing season was over and they were looking around for something exciting to do.

In 1946 the Italians voted for a republic instead of a monarchy and threw the Savoys out. A shame, really - as Turin evidences, they really knew how to do cities.

Coincidentally (or not?), 2nd June is the death date of Giuseppe Garibaldi (1882), who fought so hard to unite Italy into a single state, arguably paving the way for the later republic to become a reality.

It is also the day (597) when Saint Augustine baptised the Saxon king Ethelbert, paving the way for the Christianisation of Britain and arguably the throwing out of all those dreadful beard-wearing Druids, ladies of the lake and a host of wood nymphs. And, coincidentally (or not?), the day 900 years later when King Henry VIII was born, the monarch who changed the face of Christianity in Britain by destroying the monasteries and creating the Church of England.

It is the birthdate of writer the Marquis de Sade (1740, and we all know what that led to), novelist Thomas Hardy (1840) and Johnnie Wiessmuller (1904), the greatest Tarzan of them all. It is the death date for John E. Feisser (1865), the founder of the first Dutch baptist church, for Vita Sackville West (1962) and Rex Harrison (1990). (No connection?).

It is the day in history (1619) when the English and the Dutch signed an accord over the business to be done in the Indies (and boy didn't they do business!), and when August van Sacksen was converted to Catholicism (1697). On this day in 1835, PT Barnum's famous circus started its first US tour and the wonderfully-named Harriet Tubman led Yankee soldiers into Maryland, freeing the slaves (1863). Back in Italy, Marconi patents the radio (1896), and far across the distant oceans, pygmies are discovered in Dutch New Guinea (1910).

And how could I forget?

Today is the anniversary of the sack of Rome by the Vandals in 455.

And the coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II just short of 1,500 years later.

No connection?

All in all, if you want a quiet day pottering around the garden today, as opposed to being converted to a different religion, discovered, freed, crowned or deposed, ... or having your mind boggled by the secret patterns hidden in chains of whimsical cause and effect, I suggest you keep yer 'ed down!





5 comments:

Chairman Bill said...

My gosh, the Italians have a lot of holidays.

Louise said...

Plus, if the holiday's two days from a weekend, they take the bridging day as well (i.e. the Friday or the Monday) -- and just as the British complain at the shortness of the Christmas holiday, so the Italians complain at the lack of bridging days!

Vanessa said...

I thought Elizabeth II was a Mountbatten, not a Vandal, although the two may possibly be the same thing, as you say!!!

Caution Flag said...

Makes me feel just a little sad that nothing momentous has happened to me on June 2.

Stresa Sights said...

I enjoyed very much all these interesting tidbits about June 2. I love this kind of stuff.. Hope it was a good festa for all...

Dana

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Festa della Repubblica

Warm and sunny with a gentle breeze.


Today is 2nd June. Republic Day in Italy, and a holiday, which is why I'm at home kicking my heels with two rebellious whirlwinds and a large number of tourists about the place.

But 2nd June seems to have been quite a day through history. As if everyone was finally awake after their winter stupor, the springtime sowing season was over and they were looking around for something exciting to do.

In 1946 the Italians voted for a republic instead of a monarchy and threw the Savoys out. A shame, really - as Turin evidences, they really knew how to do cities.

Coincidentally (or not?), 2nd June is the death date of Giuseppe Garibaldi (1882), who fought so hard to unite Italy into a single state, arguably paving the way for the later republic to become a reality.

It is also the day (597) when Saint Augustine baptised the Saxon king Ethelbert, paving the way for the Christianisation of Britain and arguably the throwing out of all those dreadful beard-wearing Druids, ladies of the lake and a host of wood nymphs. And, coincidentally (or not?), the day 900 years later when King Henry VIII was born, the monarch who changed the face of Christianity in Britain by destroying the monasteries and creating the Church of England.

It is the birthdate of writer the Marquis de Sade (1740, and we all know what that led to), novelist Thomas Hardy (1840) and Johnnie Wiessmuller (1904), the greatest Tarzan of them all. It is the death date for John E. Feisser (1865), the founder of the first Dutch baptist church, for Vita Sackville West (1962) and Rex Harrison (1990). (No connection?).

It is the day in history (1619) when the English and the Dutch signed an accord over the business to be done in the Indies (and boy didn't they do business!), and when August van Sacksen was converted to Catholicism (1697). On this day in 1835, PT Barnum's famous circus started its first US tour and the wonderfully-named Harriet Tubman led Yankee soldiers into Maryland, freeing the slaves (1863). Back in Italy, Marconi patents the radio (1896), and far across the distant oceans, pygmies are discovered in Dutch New Guinea (1910).

And how could I forget?

Today is the anniversary of the sack of Rome by the Vandals in 455.

And the coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II just short of 1,500 years later.

No connection?

All in all, if you want a quiet day pottering around the garden today, as opposed to being converted to a different religion, discovered, freed, crowned or deposed, ... or having your mind boggled by the secret patterns hidden in chains of whimsical cause and effect, I suggest you keep yer 'ed down!





5 comments:

Chairman Bill said...

My gosh, the Italians have a lot of holidays.

Louise said...

Plus, if the holiday's two days from a weekend, they take the bridging day as well (i.e. the Friday or the Monday) -- and just as the British complain at the shortness of the Christmas holiday, so the Italians complain at the lack of bridging days!

Vanessa said...

I thought Elizabeth II was a Mountbatten, not a Vandal, although the two may possibly be the same thing, as you say!!!

Caution Flag said...

Makes me feel just a little sad that nothing momentous has happened to me on June 2.

Stresa Sights said...

I enjoyed very much all these interesting tidbits about June 2. I love this kind of stuff.. Hope it was a good festa for all...

Dana