" Water, water, everywhere,
Nor any drop to drink.
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Back in the day


Japan's Meiji Constitution Goes into Effect

The Imperial, or Meiji, Constitution was the fundamental law of the Empire of Japan from 1890 until 1947. Enacted after the Meiji Restoration, it provided for a form of constitutional monarchy based on the Prussian model. The constitution allowed the active Emperor to wield considerable political power, but the control was to be shared with an elected assembly. What did Ito Hirobumi, who was charged with drafting Japan's constitution, think of the different Western constitutions that he reviewed?



Battle of Kadesh

Likely the largest chariot battle in history, the Battle of Kadesh was fought between the Egyptians and the Hittites in 1274 BCE at the city of Kadesh in what is now Syria. Pharaoh Ramses II mounted the attack to regain lost territory, but he was eventually forced to retreat to Egypt. Hostilities between the two peoples were finally ended with a peace agreement in 1258 BCE—one of the earliest international peace treaties. A replica of the agreement is held at what organization's headquarters?

Born on a day like today


Jacques Chirac

Chirac served as President of France from 1995 to 2007. He has played a critical role in the development of the European Union, of which France is a leading member. He has also been an outspoken critic of the war in Iraq. At home, Chirac has faced criticism for his alleged involvement in various unlawful schemes. In 2002, he survived an assassination attempt during celebrations of what French national holiday?

Last updated on Saturday, 29th November 2008

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