The part of English law that is derived from custom and judicial precedent rather than statutes; or when referring to a marriage, one unrecognised by the church or civil authorities.
Fact of the Day
Pope John XII was rumoured to have turned an entire wing of the Lateran into a brothel, and was in the habit of drunkenly toasting Satan.
Quote of the Day
"Blessed are the peacemakers "
~ James I & VI's personal motto
On This Day
1189 Richard the Lionheart initiated the Third Crusade to reconquer the Holy Land from Saladin.
1549 Parliament passed the First Act of Uniformity, requiring the Book of Common Prayer to be used in all public church services.
1793 Louis XVI was executed in the Place de la Revolution in Paris, after being convicted of conspiracy with foreign powers.
1908 New York city made it illegal for women to smoke in public.
1911 The first Monte Carlo car rally was held. Seven days later it was won by Henri Rougier.
1924 Vladimir Lenin, architect of the Bolshevik Revolution and first leader of the Soviet Union, died of a brain hemorrhage.
1941 The Daily Worker, official newspaper of the UK communist party, was banned because of its views on World War II.
1950 George Orwell, author of 1984 and Animal Farm, died after a three year battle against tuberculosis.
1976 The first Concorde jets carrying commercial passengers simultaneously took off at 11:40am from London and Paris.
2008 Black Monday saw the FTSE 100's biggest ever one day fall. Euro markets had their worst result since 9/11 and Asia's fell 14%.