Slang term for the guillotine during the French Revolution.
Fact of the Day
Both England and Russia imposed a tax on beards in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, making having a beard a status symbol.
Quote of the Day
"Democracy is the worst form of Government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time. "
~ Winston Churchill
On This Day
899 Alfred the Great, defender against the Vikings, and innocent of burning cakes, died.
1640 The humiliating - for Charles I - Treaty of Ripon was signed. Following the Second Bishops' War with Scottish Covenanters, it left the Scots in control of Newcastle and agreed that Charles would pay the Scottish army £850 a day to maintain the army in England. In this desperate state, Charles was forced to call what would become the Long Parliament, which ultimately led to civil war.
1863 The Football Association was founded in the Freemasons' Tavern, London.
1881 Perhaps the most famous shootout of the American Wild West, the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral in Tombstone, Arizona, took place. A result of a long-simmering feud, four lawmen, including Wyatt Earp and Doc Holiday, faced off against five cowboys in the thirty-second fight. Despite the deaths of three cowboys, the feud continued.
1951 Winston Churchill became Britain's prime minister for the second time (he had lost the 1945 election and spent the intervening six years as leader of the opposition).