Monthly Archives: November 2017

The Battle of Narva (1700)

Sweden’s power and influence in the Baltic region was growing when the young and inexperienced Charles XII came to the throne in 1697. Seeing their chance to end Swedish domination of the area, Charles’s neighbors—Peter I of Russia, Frederick IV of Denmark, and Augustus II of Poland—formed an alliance and attacked. At Narva, the first major battle of the Great Northern War, Charles’s army soundly defeated the superior Russian forces. A few years later, Peter returned to Narva. What happened? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Yemen Independence Day

Independence Day in Yemen is November 30, a national holiday to commemorate Yemen’s independence from the British. It was won on that day in 1967, when evacuation of British soldiers was complete and the leading political group, the National Liberation Front, declared the formation of the independent state of the People’s Republic of South Yemen. National Day (May 22) observes the official proclamation of the unification of the Yemen Arab Republic (North Yemen) and the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen (South Yemen) in 1990. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Jonathan Swift (1667)

Known as one of the greatest satirists in the English language, Swift was an ordained Anglican priest who devoted himself to exposing England’s unfair treatment of his native Ireland. In his ironic 1729 tract “A Modest Proposal,” he suggested that the Irish escape poverty by selling their children to by eaten by the English. His classic Gulliver’s Travels is a ruthless satire of human follies. Swift once mocked a publisher of astrological predictions by making what prediction of his own? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

4-H: Head, Heart, Hands, and Health

A youth organization administered by the Cooperative Extension System of the US Department of Agriculture, 4-H has over 9 million members between the ages of 5 and 21. With “learn by doing” as its creed, the goal of 4-H is to develop citizenship, leadership, and life skills through experiential learning programs. The organization is often associated with summer camps, county fairs, and state fairs, and it retains a strong connection to its agricultural roots. What is the 4-H motto? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Natalie Wood Drowns (1981)

At the age of 43, actress Natalie Wood, who first won acclaim as a child for her role in Miracle on 34th Street and went on to become a successful film star, drowned after apparently falling overboard following a night of drinking on her yacht. Though the death was ruled an accident, a woman on a nearby boat reported hearing cries for help that night. Wood had been spending a holiday weekend aboard the yacht with her husband, actor Robert Wagner. Who else was aboard the yacht that night? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Vanuatu Unity Day

The nation of Vanuatu is an archipelago of 83 islands, 113 languages, and a host of different tribal groups. To celebrate the unification of differing groups into one nation, Unity Day was established on November 29. To celebrate this day, representatives from all of Vanuatu’s peoples come to the capital city of Port Vila. High chiefs from all the islands attend the festivities, which include performances by native dancers in traditional dress and a parade. Music concerts and sporting events are also part of the celebration. Citizens usually observe the day with picnics or by camping. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Clive Staples "C. S." Lewis (1898)

Lewis was an Irish-British scholar noted for his witty explorations of Christianity, as well as for his classic series of children’s fantasy novels, The Chronicles of Narnia, which includes The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. He also wrote The Screwtape Letters, a satirical novel in which an experienced devil teaches his young charge about temptation. During World War I, Lewis made a pact with a fellow soldier before the man was killed. How did Lewis keep his promise? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary