" The proper function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time. "
Jack London

Back in the day


The Völkner Incident

After New Zealand was named a British crown colony in 1840, Christian missionaries began to disseminate their teachings among the native Maori people. In the early 1860s, a religious-military Maori cult emerged, mingling Christian beliefs with native spiritual elements and urging followers to violently oppose the European presence. In March 1865, members of this Pai Marire movement killed missionary Carl Sylvius Völkner in a gruesome manner, hanging him before supposedly doing what to his body?



Buckingham Palace

With its sprawling splendor and hundreds of rooms, Buckingham Palace is a home of the British monarchy, an art gallery, and a tourist attraction—quite a change from its early days as a house for the dukes of Buckingham. In 1837, Queen Victoria became the first sovereign to live in Buckingham Palace, though King George III had purchased the property in 1761. Long under construction, the structure was remodeled by architect John Nash in the 1820s. Why was Nash not allowed to finish the project?

Born on a day like today


Pope Pius XII

Eugenio Maria Giuseppe Giovanni Pacelli succeeded Pope Pius XI as Pius XII in 1939. Though he pursued projects aimed at helping prisoners and refugees of World War II, he maintained the Vatican's neutrality for the duration of the conflict, believing that preserving relations with all the belligerents would aid his efforts to bring about peace. These wartime policies have since aroused considerable controversy. Which famous Jewish figures have expressed gratitude for his actions?

Last updated on Sunday, 2nd March 2014

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