" At the age of eleven or thereabouts women acquire a poise and an ability to handle difficult situations which a man, if he is lucky, manages to achieve somewhere in the later seventies. "
P. G. Wodehouse

Back in the day


General Sherman Captures Savannah

In 1864, William Tecumseh Sherman succeeded Ulysses S. Grant as Union commander in the western theater of the American Civil War. Following his soldiers' successful capture of Atlanta, Georgia, Sherman set out on his highly controversial "March to the Sea." The General and his 62,000 men marched from Atlanta to Savannah, implementing a scorched earth policy that left a path of destruction in their wake. What were "Sherman's Neckties" and how did they factor into his strategy of "total war"?




The didgeridoo, developed by the Australian Aborigines, is perhaps the world's oldest wind instrument. Though the exact age of the didgeridoo is unknown, studies of rock art in northern Australia suggest that the Aboriginal people have been using it for approximately 1,500 years. Didgeridoos measure about 4 ft (1.5 m) in length and are made from branches that have been hollowed out by termites. A 2005 study found that practicing the didgeridoo can help reduce what sleep-related conditions?

Born on a day like today


Jean Racine

Though Racine's work faced many criticisms from his contemporaries, he is now considered one of France's "big three" 17th-century dramatists. His tragedies are a prime example of French classicism, and his Alexandrine verse is considered exceptional in its harmony, simplicity, and elegance. Racine's Andromaque, a tale of enslavement and unrequited love, earned him recognition as France's leading tragic dramatist. What other two dramatists were part of the “big three”?

Last updated on Monday, 22nd December 2008

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