" If a man means to be hard, let him keep in his saddle and speak from that height, above the level of pleading eyes, and with the command of a distant horizon. "
George Eliot

Back in the day


Roe v. Wade Decision Legalizes Abortion in the US

Roe v. Wade was the landmark Supreme Court case that legalized abortion in the US. In 1970, an unmarried pregnant woman—who was at the time identified only as Jane Roe—filed a lawsuit because she wanted an abortion but could not legally get one in Texas. Her suit aimed to have the Texas abortion law declared unconstitutional as an invasion of her right to privacy as guaranteed by the 1st, 4th, 5th, 9th, and 14th Amendments. How does Norma McCorvey—"Jane Roe"—view the case today?



The St. Augustine Monster

When a large carcass washed ashore on the coast near St. Augustine, Florida, tales of the "St. Augustine Monster" were born. Two boys on bicycles first spotted the carcass on the evening of November 30, 1896, and reported their discovery to local physician DeWitt Webb. Webb determined that the carcass was at least 18 feet (5 m) long and estimated its weight at nearly 5 tons, if not more. Webb believed it was the remains of a giant octopus, but what has more recent analysis concluded?

Born on a day like today


Lord Byron

Despite being a social outcast—and self-conscious of his noticeable limp—Byron became the rock star of the Romantic period. His poetic travelogue Childe Harold's Pilgrimage won him fame, while his complex personality, dashing good looks, and scandalous love affairs captured the imagination of Europe. His literary legacy includes the satirical epic Don Juan and the lonely, rebellious, and brooding "Byronic hero." Who famously described Byron as "mad, bad, and dangerous to know"?

Last updated on Wednesday, 22nd January 2014

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