" For whatever is truly wondrous and fearful in man, never yet was put into words or books. "
Herman Melville

Back in the day


Sirimavo Bandaranaike Becomes World's First Female Prime Minister

After her husband's assassination in 1959, Bandaranaike became the first woman in the world to serve as a nation's prime minister. She led two coalition governments, from 1960–65 and from 1970–77, and promoted a new constitution that proclaimed a republic and changed the country's name from Ceylon to Sri Lanka. She was later stripped of her civil rights because of abuses as prime minister but reentered politics in the late 1980s. In the 1990s, she was again appointed prime minister by whom?



Speaking in Tongues

Glossolalia is the generally unintelligible speech produced by some schizophrenics or individuals in a state of trance-like religious excitement. In the latter context, "speaking in tongues" is often interpreted as a sign of possession by a supernatural spirit or conversation with divine beings. There are several references to the phenomenon in the New Testament, including an account of such an occurrence among followers of Jesus at Pentecost. What other religions practice forms of glossolalia?

Born on a day like today


Don Knotts

Knotts was an American comedic actor best known for his portrayal of the bumbling but earnest sheriff's deputy Barney Fife on the 1960s sitcom The Andy Griffith Show. When the show first aired, Griffith—as Sheriff Andy Taylor—was to be the comedic lead, and Knotts was to play his straight man, but Knotts's Fife proved so funny that this was soon reversed. The role earned Knotts 5 Emmy Awards for Best Supporting Actor in a Television Comedy. In what film did he first appear with Griffith?

Last updated on Wednesday, 21st July 2010

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