" Happy is the man who learns from the misfortunes of others. "

Back in the day


Ceiling of Sistine Chapel Completed

In 1508, Pope Julius II commissioned Michelangelo to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The work was completed in 1512 and features over 300 biblical figures and nine episodes from the Book of Genesis. Below these scenes are the statuesque figures of prophets and sibyls, with episodes from the Old Testament in the spandrels. The last great work Michelangelo executed in the chapel was The Last Judgment. Where in the chapel did he paint it?



Mayumba National Park

In 2002, Gabon's president established a national park system that protects about 11% of the country's land and waters. Included is Mayumba National Park, located on the Atlantic coast of central Africa and dedicated to the protection of marine life. The park shelters a 60 km (37 mi.) strip of beach and coastal vegetation and extends another 15 km (9 mi.) out to sea. Dolphins and whales can often be found in the waters off the coast. What reptile uses the park's beach as its breeding ground?

Born on a day like today


Alexander Alekhine

Alekhine, a Russian chess grandmaster, was one of the world's great chess champions. By the age of 16 he was a master player, and in 1927, he defeated José Raúl Capablanca to become world champion. Alekhine dominated the chess world between 1927 and 1935, losing only 7 of 238 tournament games. When WWI broke out, he was in Germany competing in an international tournament and was taken as a prisoner of war. What scheme did Alekhine devise to secure his release?

Last updated on Thursday, 1st November 2007

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