Category Archives: This day in History

Battle of Aljubarrota (1385)

At a time of war, famine, and plague in Europe, the Portuguese village of Aljubarrota became the site of a momentous battle in which the Portuguese, aided by English archers, defeated the forces of the Spanish King John I of Castile, assuring Portuguese independence from the Castilian crown. Nuno Álvares Pereira, the man who led the revolt against Castilian domination, emerged from the battle a hero. He later became a monk and was recently canonized. Who was the Portuguese king at the time? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Battle of Dogger Bank (1781)

The Battle of Dogger Bank was a naval battle that took place in the North Sea during the Fourth Anglo-Dutch War, which broke out over Dutch trade with Britain’s enemies during the American Revolution. The battle is therefore considered part of the American War of Independence. The clash began after the British spotted and began to chase a Dutch merchant fleet being escorted by a convoy of warships. Both sides suffered significant casualties during the three-hour skirmish. Who emerged the victor? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Battle of Edgecote Moor (1469)

The Battle of Edgecote Moor was an important turning point in the series of dynastic civil wars for the English throne known as the Wars of the Roses (1455-1485). The battle pitted the forces of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, against those of King Edward IV. Warwick had once been loyal to Edward and had even helped put him on the throne, but Edward began to resent him and suppress his influence. Angered, Warwick allied with Edward’s brother, George, and rose in rebellion. Who won the battle? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Battle of Falkirk (1298)

The Battle of Falkirk was a major battle in the First War of Scottish Independence. It was fought between the leader of the Scots, William Wallace, and King Edward I of England, also known as the Hammer of the Scots. In 1298, Edward I invaded Scotland and defeated a smaller force led by Wallace at Falkirk. Edward’s longbowmen and cavalry decimated Wallace’s spearmen, forcing him to retreat. Though victorious, Edward’s troops also retreated following the battle, and many deserted thereafter. Why? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Battle of Legnano (1176)

In 1160, Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa was excommunicated for his support of a series of antipopes against Pope Alexander III. In 1167, the communes of Lombardy in northern Italy formed an alliance to resist Frederick. The Lombard League soundly defeated Frederick’s forces in the Battle of Legnano, after which Frederick reconciled with the pope and made peace with the Lombard cities. Why, if he survived, did Frederick’s wife go into mourning for her husband following the battle? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

First Kentucky Derby (1875)

The Kentucky Derby is a classic US thoroughbred horse race. Established in 1875, it is run annually on the first Saturday in May at Churchill Downs track in Louisville, Kentucky. The field is limited to three-year-old Thoroughbreds, and the track distance is 1.25 mi (2,000 m). With the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes, it makes up US racing’s coveted Triple Crown. In front of an estimated crowd of 10,000 people, the inaugural derby was won by jockey Oliver Lewis riding a colt named what? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Tomb of Herod the Great Is Discovered (2007)

Herod the Great was the Roman-appointed king of Judaea in the first century BCE. Infamous today for his role in the Biblical account of the slaying of the infants of Bethlehem, Herod was known during his lifetime for his ambitious building projects, including fortresses, aqueducts, and theaters. The location of his tomb, described by the first-century CE Roman-Jewish historian Josephus Flavius, remained a mystery until 2007, when an Israeli archeologist found it where? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Fall of Saigon (1975)

On April 30, 1975, Saigon, the largest city in Vietnam and the capital of South Vietnam, was captured by the National Liberation Front and the People’s Army of Vietnam. The event marked the end of the Vietnam War (1955-1975) and the reunification of Vietnam under communist rule. The city lost its status as the country’s capital and was renamed after what Vietnamese Marxist revolutionary leader and late president of North Vietnam? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Battle of Clontarf (1014)

The Battle of Clontarf was a decisive battle fought between Irish forces under the high king of Ireland, Brian Boru, and a Viking army formed by Sitric, king of the Dublin Norse. Brian’s forces defeated the Vikings at Clontarf, near Dublin, but he was killed shortly thereafter by fleeing Norsemen. Brian’s victory broke Viking power in Ireland, but, without a king, the country split into small, separate kingdoms that then fought one another. What was Wolf the Quarrelsome’s role in the battle? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Battles of Lexington and Concord (1775)

The Battles of Lexington and Concord were the opening engagements of the American Revolution. While marching from Boston to Concord to seize colonists’ military stores, a British force of 700 was met at Lexington by 77 local minutemen. After a brief exchange of shots, the outnumbered colonists fell back. The British continued on to Concord, where they were defeated by a militia of about 500. Who had been sent to warn the people of the Massachusetts countryside about the impending British attack? Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary