" Common-sense in an uncommon degree is what the world calls wisdom. "
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

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Pope Benedict XV Canonizes Joan of Arc as Saint

Joan of Arc was a French military leader and heroine. Inspired and directed by religious visions, she organized the French resistance that forced the English to end their siege of Orléans. The same year, she led an army of 12,000 to Rheims and had the dauphin crowned Charles VII. Captured and sold to the English by the Burgundians, she was later tried for heresy and sorcery and was burned at the stake in Rouen. How old was she when she died?




Punjabi is an Indo-European language spoken in the Punjab regions of Pakistan and India, where there are 80 and 30 million speakers, respectively. Unlike other Indo-European languages, it is tonal, meaning Punjabi words have high or low tones permanently associated with them. Punjabi is the preferred language of the Sikhs, and it is the usual language of Bhangra music, popular in South Asia and abroad. What are the main dialects of Punjabi?

Born on a day like today


Pope Innocent XI

Innocent XI was elected to the papacy because of his great saintliness and desire for reform. His election had been opposed by Louis XIV, with whom he had a long, bitter quarrel over Gallicanism, a Roman Catholic tradition of resistance to papal authority. As Pope, he passed strict ordinances against nepotism among the cardinals and lived very parsimoniously, exhorting the cardinals to do the same. Why did Innocent XI have little sympathy for the Catholic King of England, James II?

Last updated on Wednesday, 16th May 2007

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