" Although men are accused for not knowing their own weakness, yet perhaps as few know their own strength. It is in men as in soils, where sometimes there is a vein of gold, which the owner knows not of. "
Jonathan Swift

Back in the day


The January Uprising Begins

The January Uprising began as a spontaneous rebellion of young Poles in Russian Poland against conscription into the Imperial Russian Army. They were soon joined by Lithuanians living in the territory, but they were severely outnumbered and isolated, and they failed to win any major victories or capture any major cities. The Russians crushed the uprising and began an intensive program of Russification. During the uprising, Russian soldiers are said to have defenestrated what composer's piano?




Although almost nothing is known of his life or works, Greek tradition holds that Thespis was a poet often considered the "inventor of tragedy." According to Themistius, Aristotle said that tragedy in its earliest stage was entirely choral until Thespis introduced the prologue and speeches. Thespis, according to Themistius's account, was thus the first "actor." He was also the first recorded winner of a prize for tragedy at the Great Dionysia drama festival in what year?

Born on a day like today


Johan August Strindberg

Strindberg was a master of the Swedish language and an innovator of dramatic and literary styles. He achieved renown with the novel The Red Room, in which he satirized hypocrisy in Swedish life. It helped initiate Swedish realism and revealed his remarkable style, which he developed in an impressive assortment of novels, plays, stories, histories, and poems. Which of Strindberg's plays, now considered the first modern Swedish drama, was originally rejected by the national theater?

Last updated on Sunday, 22nd January 2012

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