The social rung below the nobility, but including those who were landed and entitled to a coat of arms, and who could sit in the House of Commons. It typically included the locally powerful, such as knights and other important people in towns and the counties.
Fact of the Day
The names of the English rivers Amber, Avon, Axe, Esk, Exe, Ouse, Humber, Irwell, Thames and Tyne all mean 'river' or 'water' in various old languages.
Quote of the Day
"We learn from history that man can never learn anything from history. "
~ Hegel (German philosopher, 1770-1831)
On This Day
1330 Roger Mortimer, de facto ruler of England after he and Edward II's wife Isabella deposed Edward, was hanged at Tyburn for assuming royal power.
1530 Cardinal Thomas Wolsey died of natural causes on his way to face charges of treason.
1781 The crew of the British slave ship Zong massacred 131 captives by throwing them overboard in a bid to claim insurance money after the crew had made a navigational error and missed their destination.
1812 Napoleon's army retreated across the Berezina River in Belarus. Although the army managed to avoid getting trapped, they suffered massive casualties, and the word 'berezina' became French slang for 'disaster.'
1947 The United Nations approved the partition of Palestine to form an independent Jewish state.