" A good face they say, is a letter of recommendation. O Nature, Nature, why art thou so dishonest, as ever to send men with these false recommendations into the World! "
Henry Fielding

Back in the day


WWII: Operation Manna Begins

During WWII, the Royal Air Force delivered 6,680 tons food into parts of the German-occupied Netherlands, with the acquiescence of the occupying forces, to feed starving Dutch citizens suffering from a famine that ultimately claimed 18,000 lives. Operation Manna, as it was called, was named for the food that the Book of Exodus says miraculously appeared for the Israelites in the wilderness. The mission ended on May 8, when Germany's surrender ended the war in Europe. How was the food delivered?



The Bow Street Runners

The Bow Street Runners have been called London's first professional police force, as they were paid by the magistrate, using funds from the central government, to pursue and arrest criminals. The group was established in 1749 by the English author Henry Fielding, who had taken up law and been appointed magistrate after his plays satirizing political corruption had resulted in his effective banishment from the theater. Fielding's force was established the same year that he published what novel?

Born on a day like today


John Arbuthnot

Greatly admired in his time, Arbuthnot was a Scottish scientist, mathematician, and satirist. The court physician to Queen Anne, he is best remembered for his five "John Bull" pamphlets, political satires on the Whig war policy that introduced the character John Bull, a personification of England akin to the American Uncle Sam. With his friends Jonathan Swift, Alexander Pope, and John Gay, Arbuthnot was a founding member of the famous Scriblerus Club, an organization devoted to what?

Last updated on Friday, 29th April 2011

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