The earliest book of English table manners was written by Daniel of Beccles in the time of Henry II. It prohibited elbows on tables, talking with full mouths and scratching armpits. It also gave guidance on what to do if the wife of the host were to make a pass at a guest: he should feign illness.
Fact of the Day
Quote of the Day
"There are decades when nothing happens; and there are weeks when decades happen. "
On This Day
1781 Washington captured the British force at Yorktown, which turned Parliament against continuing fighting in the American War of Independence
1813 Napoleon was decisively defeated in battle for the the first time by the Sixth Coalition army of Prussians, Russians, Austrians and Swedes, at the Battle of Leipzig. It was the largest battle in Europe prior to the First World War.
1914 The First Battle of Ypres began following the unsuccessful 'Race to the Sea' - where both sides had tried to outflank each other - of the First World War. The fighting, which lasted until November, would become typical of the war on the Western Front.
1933 Germany withdrew from the League of Nations, the excuse being that, while Germany had already disarmed, other members of the League were not willing to do the same. A massive programme of German rearmament followed.
1987 Stock markets around the world crashed during Black Monday. The Dow Jones recorded its largest ever one day percentage drop of 22.68%
1989 The Guildford Four, who had been convicted of the 1975 IRA bombings of pubs in Guildford and Woolwich, were cleared of all charges after nearly fifteen years in prison.