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Archive for December, 2010

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Happy New Year

Posted in Anniversary, History on Tuesday, 21 December 2010

picture, Harold Hare, Happy New Year

Harold Hare and his pals celebrate New Year’s Day. Illustration by Hugh McNeill

1 January marks the beginning of the new year… but it wasn’t always so. Between the 12th century and 1752, the beginning of the year was celebrated on Lady Day, 25 March. Thus, records of the execution of Charles I say it took place on 24 March 1648, although modern historical records adjust this to 1649. Whilst Scotland celebrated the New Year on 1 January from 1600, England, Ireland and the British colonies changed their year’s beginning in 1752, later that year introducing the Gregorian calendar.

Many more pictures featuring celebrations throughout history (and many more featuring Harold Hare) can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

The Commonwealth of Australia

Posted in Anniversary, Geography, History on Tuesday, 21 December 2010

picture, Australia, Christmas, beach

Christmas and New Year can be celebrated on the beaches of Australia. Illustration by Jesus Blasco

1 January marks the anniversary of the establishment of the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901. Discovered by Dutch explorers in 1606, Australia’s eastern half was claimed by Britain in 1770 and settled through penal transportation to the colony of New South Wales from 1788. Although the British remain monarchs of Australia, the country is now a self-governing Commonwealth realm.

Many more pictures relating to the history, culture and wildlife of Australia can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

Birth of Jacques Cartier

Posted in Anniversary, Exploration, Travel on Monday, 20 December 2010

picture, Jacques Cartier, Canada, St Lawrence River, Indians

Jacques Carter meets the ‘Canediens’. Illustration by Severino Baraldi

31 December marks the anniversary of the birth of French explorer Jacques Cartier, known as the ‘Father of Canada’, in 1494. Born in St. Malo, Brittainy, Cartier was the first European to describe and map areas of  the American and Canadian east coast. During his second voyage he sailed up the St Lawrence River, hoping to find a passage to the Orient. Cartier was the first to name the local Iroquoian inhabitants “Canadiens”, based on a mis-interpretation: asked where they lived, the locals said “kanata”, which Cartier took to mean the land but actually meant “village”.

Many more pictures relating to the exploration, history and wildlife of Canada can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

The East India Company

Posted in Anniversary, History, Travel on Monday, 20 December 2010

picture, East India Company, trade, merchants, silk

The East India company traded in silks, dyes and other commercial goods. Illustration by Severino Baraldi

31 December marks the anniversary of the East India Company, granted a Royal Charter by Queen Elizabeth I on this day in 1600. Formed to pursue trade in the East Indies, its monopoly on trade was challenged by a rival and the two companies were merged in the early 18th century as The Honourable East India Company.

By the mid-18th century, most of their trade was in cotton, silk, dye, tea and opium from India. The company directly administered large areas of India and ruled for a century with an iron fist until the 1857 Indian Rebellion, after which the Government assumed control and the company was dissolved in 1874.

Many more pictures relating to the history of India can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

The Pirates of Penzance

Posted in Anniversary, Theatre on Sunday, 19 December 2010

picture, The Pirates of Penzance, Gilbert and Sullivan, play

Gilbert & Sullivan’s most famous play, The Pirates of Penzance. Illustration by Ron Embleton

30 December marks the anniversary of the first performance of Gilbert and Sullivan’s comic opera The Pirates of Penzance at the Royal Bijou Theatre in Paignton, Devon, in 1879, although the play officially had its premiere in New York the following day. The plot involves young Frederic, apprenticed to a band of happy-go-lucky pirates until he is 21. However, as he was born on 29 February during a leap year, despite living past his 21st year, he must remain an apprentice for over 60 more. In love with Mabel, Frederic assists in bringing the pirates and their foe, the Major-General, together.

Many more pictures relating to the history of the theatre (and the history of pirates) can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

Birth of Rudyard Kipling

Posted in Anniversary, Literature on Sunday, 19 December 2010

picture, Gunga Din, Rudyard Kipling, India, desert

A scene from Kipling’s poem “Gunga Din”. Illustration by Gerry Embleton

30 December marks the anniversary of the birth of author Joseph Rudyard Kipling in 1865. Born in Bombay, Kipling is best remembered for his stories and novels, many of them set in India. Educated in England, Kipling enjoyed travelling and writing, his famous works including The Jungle Book, Stalky & Co., Kim, Just So Stories, Puck of Pook’s Hill, the story “The Man Who Would Be King” (filmed with Sean Connery and Michael Caine) and the poem “Gunga Din”.

Kipling died in London on 18 January 1936, aged 70.

Many more pictures relating to authors and their works can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

The Battle of Wounded Knee

Posted in Anniversary, Famous battles on Saturday, 18 December 2010

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The Battle of Wounded Knee. Illustration by Angus McBride

29 December marks the anniversary of the massacre at Wounded Knee Creek, South Dakota, in 1890. In mid-December crowds had protested the arrest of Chief Sitting Bull and the resulting violence had resulted in 14 deaths. Fearful of reprisals, 200 of Sitting Bull’s Hunkpapa band fled to join Chief Spotted Elk. The latter led 300 of his Minconjou Lakota tribesmen 38 Hunkpapa Lakota to shelter with Chief Red Cloud of the Oglala Lakota but they were intercepted by the 7th Cavalry and escorted to Wounded Knee. Ordered to give up their weapons, a scuffle broke out and a shot fired. The troopers began firing indiscriminately from all sides, killing some 150 men, women and children and wounding another 50 (47 of them women and children), some of whom later died.

Many more pictures relating to the history of the American Indian can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

Birth of Charles Macintosh

Posted in Anniversary, Science on Saturday, 18 December 2010

picture, Charles Macintosh, Mac, waterproof clothing

The waterproof macintosh was invented by Charles Macintosh. Illustration by James E. McConnell

29 December marks the anniversary of the birth of Charles Macintosh, inventor of the waterproof clothing that carries his name. Born in Glasgow in 1766, Macintosh worked as a clerk but was a keen amateur chemist. giving up his job in order to manufacture chemicals. His experiments with naphtha led to the invention of waterproof fabrics, which involved cementing two layers of India-rubber together, the naphtha making the rubber soluble.

Many more pictures relating to science and scientists throughout the ages can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

The Tay Bridge disaster

Posted in Anniversary, Architecture, Transport on Friday, 17 December 2010

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The Tay Bridge disaster cost the lives of 75 passengers

28 December marks the anniversary of the Tay Bridge disaster in 1879. The bridge across the Firth of  Tay between Dundee and Fife was constructed in 1871-77, at the time the longest bridge in the world. It officially opened on 1 June 1878.

One disastrous night, the central spans gave way during high winter gales and a train with six carriages plunged into the icy waters, killing its 75 passengers, amongst them the son-in-law of the bridge’s designer, Sir Thomas Bouch.

Many more pictures relating to trains and railways can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.

The Messina earthquake

Posted in Anniversary, History on Friday, 17 December 2010

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The town of Messina was destroyed not by the earthquake but by the subsequent tsunami. Illustration by Pat Nicolle

28 December marks the anniversary of the almost complete destruction of the town of Messina, Sicily, by an earthquake in 1908. The earthquake, with a magnitude of 7.5 on the Richter scale, occurred in the early morning, shaking the ground for some 30-40 seconds. The effects were felt across a 300 km radius. However, Messina was then devestated by the resultant tsunami as a wall of water 40 feet high struck the town, killing some 70,000 residents and destroying 93% of all structures.

Many more pictures relating to earthquakes and other disasters can be found at the Look and Learn picture library. Click on the link or picture to find out more about licensing images for commercial and educational use.