Updated: Oct 11, 2021
King Eadwig died
Eadwig, also spelled Edwy sometimes called the All-Fair, was King of England from 955 until his premature death aged about 19.
He was the elder son of King Edmund I & his Queen Ælfgifu of Shaftesbury. Eadwig became King in 955 aged 15 following the death of his uncle Eadred.
Eadwig's short reign was tarnished by disputes with nobles & men of the church, including Archbishops Dunstan & Oda. He died in 959, having ruled less than four years. He was buried in the capital Winchester. His brother Edgar the Peaceful succeeded him.
Eadwig is known for his remarkable generosity in giving away land. In 956 alone, his sixty odd gifts of land make up around 5% of all genuine Anglo-Saxon charters. No known ruler in Europe matched that yearly total before the twelfth century, & his cessions are plausibly attributed to political insecurity.
Edgar the Peaceful becomes king of all England
Edgar born c. 943, known as the Peaceful or the Peaceable, was the King of England from 959 until his death.
He was the younger son of Edmund I & Ælfgifu of Shaftesbury, & came to the throne as a teenager, following the death of his older brother Eadwig.
As king, Edgar further consolidated the political unity achieved by his predecessors, with his reign being noted for its relative stability.
His most trusted advisor was Dunstan, whom he recalled from exile & made Archbishop of Canterbury. The pinnacle of Edgar's reign was his coronation at Bath in 973, which was organised by Dunstan & forms the basis for the current coronation ceremony.
Edgar was crowned at Bath & along with his wife Ælfthryth was anointed, setting a precedent for a coronation of a queen in England itself.
After his death on 8 July 975, he was succeeded by his son Edward the Martyr, although the succession was disputed.
King Henry III was born
Henry was born on 1 October 1207 in Winchester.
He was the son of king John & his second wife Isabella of Angoulême. Henry was nine when his father died & he became king. Though the country was ruled by a series of regencies until 1234, when Henry took over. Problems began as early as 1237, when his barons objected to the influence of Henry's Savoyard relatives. The marriage arranged in 1238 between Henry's sister & English nobleman Simon de Montfort only made relationship between Henry & his leading nobles worse.
In 1242, Henry's half brothers involved him in a disastrously expensive military venture in France. This prompted parliament to demand new blood on the council to act as 'conservators of liberties' & oversee royal finances. But the king was able to exploit the differences between his opponents & little happened.
Finally, in 1258 a bungled deal with the Papacy threatened Henry with excommunication. This, together with defeats in Wales & local crises, brought about the main crisis of his reign. The Provisions of Oxford (1258) created a 15-member privy council, selected by the barons, to advise the king & oversee the entire administration. Parliament was to be held three times a year & the households of the king & queen were also to be reformed.
The settlement began to break down in 1260 with quarrels between the Earl of Gloucester & the ambitious Simon de Montfort. Civil war was inevitable. In May 1264, Simon de Montfort won a resounding victory at Lewes & set up a new government. In May 1265, Henry's eldest son Prince Edward escaped captivity & rallied the royalist forces, defeating & killing de Montfort at Evesham before taking control of government from his weakened father.
The rest of the reign was occupied by resolving the problems created by the rebellion. Henry deprived de Montfort's supporters of their lands, but the 'disinherited' fought back until terms were agreed in 1266 for former rebels to buy back their lands. By 1270, the country was sufficiently settled for Edward to set off on crusade. Henry died on 16 November 1272. He was buried in Westminster Abbey, which he had largely rebuilt in the gothic style during his reign.
Henry had five children by his wife Eleanor of Provence;
Edward I (b. 17/18 June 1239 – d. 7 July 1307)
Margaret (b. 29 September 1240 – d. 26 February 1275)
Beatrice (b. 25 June 1242 – d. 24 March 1275)
Edmund (16 January 1245 – d. 5 June 1296)
Katherine (b. 25 November 1253 – d. 3 May 1257
Queen Mary I coronation
MARY I was crowned Queen on 1 October 1553, aged 37
Stephen Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester, who had been personally rescued from imprisonment in the Tower of London by Queen Mary, officiated at her coronation.
The Archbishop of York, Robert Holgate, had also been stripped of his rank & imprisoned for the crime of being married. Luckily for him, however, he obtained his release by declaring that he repented of his marriage & that he had only married for fear of being thought a papist. He offered to put his wife away, obey the queen’s laws & pay £1,000!. His wealth was enormous, but he loyally made no mention of his wife in his will. Gardiner Henry VIII’s highly-valued private secretary had the unusual honour, as a mere bishop, of crowning the new queen.
Bishop Gardiner, now Lord Chancellor, was standing before her & beginning the coronation service with words:
"Sirs – Here present is Mary, rightful & undoubted inheritrix, by the laws of God & man, to the crown & royal dignity of this realm of England, France & Ireland; & you shall understand, that this day is appointed by all the peers of this land for the consecration, unction, & coronation of the said most excellent princess Mary. Will you serve at this time, & give your wills & assent to the same consecration, unction & coronation?"
It was unique to have a queen on the throne, reigning in her own right. One of her first pronouncements the new queen commanded ‘her good & loving subjects to live together in Christian charity.’
In view of ‘Bloody’ Mary’s later reputation these early days of her reign, she enjoyed genuine popular affection after all, she was Henry VIII's daughter, & many people still had happy memories of her mother, Katharine of Aragon, before the arrival of Anne Boleyn.
The atmosphere in London, was of open rejoicing as Queen Mary made the traditional progress from the Tower of London to Westminster. As a queen, she was habitually attended by women, & on this occasion she was accompanied by seventy ladies on horseback, all dressed in crimson velvet. Five hundred gentlemen, nobles & various ambassadors & dignitaries went before her; & Mary herself was seated in a splendid litter covered in cloth of silver & supported between six white horses. She was dressed in a gown of blue velvet, furred with ermine, & on her head was a caul of gold network, enriched with pearls & precious stones.
John Stow, the contemporary London historian, remarked that this headpiece was so heavy ‘that she was fain to bear up her head with her hand.’ Following just behind Mary, riding in an open carriage decorated with crimson velvet came the Princess Elizabeth – later Elizabeth I – accompanied by Henry VIII’s only surviving widow, Anne of Cleves. Both of them were dressed in robes of cloth of silver with large hanging sleeves. Anne of Cleves, now aged thirty-eight, had lived in comfort since being summarily divorced for being an unsuitable wife for Henry. As for Elizabeth, she had lived in obscurity & poverty. At twenty, she was enjoying the first happy public event of her life. Seeing her in splendour for virtually the first time, Londoners must have marvelled at what a beautiful young woman she had now become.
The city was highly decorated, & pageant after pageant presented extraordinary entertainments for the coronation guests.
Queen Mary & her attendants went on to the royal residence in Whitehall. A great fire had destroyed the king’s apartments in the Palace of Westminster in the last years of Henry VIII’s reign, but he had already acquired Wolsey’s ‘White Hall’.
Blue cloth was laid from a marble chair in Westminster Hall to Westminster Abbey, & the altar there was covered with cloth of gold. The queen was dressed in crimson robes & walked under a canopy borne by the barons of the Cinque Ports, supported on her right hand by the Bishop of Durham & on her left by the Earl of Shrewsbury. Her half-sister, Princess Elizabeth, walked immediately behind her. Following after Elizabeth came Anne of Cleves, who had been given a position of honour as befitted a former queen (albeit briefly) of England. Mary was met in Westminster Hall by Stephen Gardiner together with ten other bishops, all wearing their mitres & copes of gold cloth, & then, after being censed & sprinkled with holy water, the procession wound its way into the abbey for the elaborate, lengthy & traditional coronation service.
After Mary made her coronation oaths, swearing upon the Host to observe & keep them, Mary was before the high altar & remained there motionless while Gardiner sang the hymn of invocation to the Holy Ghost, beginning Veni, Creator Spiritus, with the choir & organ joining in.
Like her half-brother, Mary wore three crowns during the service: St Edward’s Crown, the Imperial Crown of the realm of England, & a third crown specially made for her. A fanfare of trumpets blared out as Gardiner placed each of these on her head. Elizabeth I was the last sovereign to be crowned with three crowns. Having been anointed & invested with Ring, Jewelled Bracelets, Sceptre, St Edward’s Staff, Spurs, Ball of Gold & ‘Regall’, the queen was brought to St Edward’s Chair & received the homage of the bishops & nobility present as they approached her one by one & kissed her on her left cheek.
It was the triumphant culmination of her life, after decades of neglect & abuse. An impressive banquet followed. The queen’s champion, Sir Edward Dymoke, threw down his gauntlet with the challenge that if there be any manner of man that will say that our sovereign lady Queen Mary is not the rightful & undoubted inheritrix . . . ‘I say he lieth like a false traitor!’ Not surprisingly no challengers emerged.
The last Catholic coronation to take place in England was now over, & Queen Mary settled into her task of re-converting her realm & cleansing it of such misguided heretics.
The executions that marked her pursuit of the restoration of Roman Catholicism in England & Ireland led to her denunciation as "Bloody Mary" by her Protestant opponents. During her five-year reign, Mary had over 280 religious dissenters burned at the stake in the Marian persecutions.
After Mary's death in 1558, her re-establishment of Roman Catholicism was reversed by her younger half-sister & successor Elizabeth I, daughter of Henry & Anne Boleyn, at the beginning of the 45-year Elizabethan Era.
Countess Claudine Rhédey von Kis-Rhéde died
Countess Claudine Rhédey von Kis-Rhéde (Hungarian: Rhédey Klaudia Zsuzsanna; Birthdate unknown, but baptised on 21 September 1812. She was the wife of Duke Alexander of Württemberg.
Her son, Francis, Duke of Teck, was the father of Mary of Teck, queen consort to king George V.
The Countess was born in her family's castle in Erdőszentgyörgy, Transylvania (then part of the Austrian Empire, today Sângeorgiu de Pădure, Romania) to Count László Rhédey de Kis-Rhéde & his wife, Baroness Ágnes Inczédy de Nagy-Várad, a direct descendant of Ferenc Rhédey, the Hungarian prince of Transylvania between 1657 & 1658.
At birth, she was styled as Countess Klaudina (Claudine) Rhédey de Kis-Rhéde.
In 1835, she married Duke Alexander of Württemberg, the son of Duke Louis of Württemberg, younger brother of King Frederick I of Württemberg. Due to the German laws relating to the line of succession, she was viewed as being of non-royal rank & the marriage was declared morganatic. She was denied the title of Duchess, but was created Countess von Hohenstein on 16 May 1835, shortly after her marriage.
Claudine died in Austria in 1841 after being thrown from her horse & trampled to death in front of a cavalry charge at a military review; other sources say she died in a carriage accident.
Countess Claudine Rhédey von Kis-Rhéde & Countess von Hohenstein had three children with Duke Alexander of Württemberg:
Princess Claudine of Teck (1836–1894).
Prince Francis of Teck (1837–1900); later created 1st Duke of Teck
Princess Amelie of Teck (1838–1893)
Prince Francis of Teck was later created Duke of Teck. He married Princess Mary Adelaide of Cambridge, a granddaughter of George III & became a member of the British Royal Family. His only daughter, Mary of Teck, married Prince George, Duke of York in July 1893, becoming queen consort on her husband's accession to the throne in May 1910. The current British monarch, Elizabeth II, is Mary's granddaughter & thus Claudine's great-great-granddaughter.
World War I: Arab forces under T. E. Lawrence (Laurence of Arabia) capture Damascus.
Colonel Thomas Edward Lawrence, (b.16 August 1888 – d.19 May 1935) was a British archaeologist, military officer, diplomat, & writer. He was renowned for his liaison role during the Sinai & Palestine Campaign & the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Empire during the First World War. The breadth & variety of his activities & associations, & his ability to describe them vividly in writing, earned him international fame as Lawrence of Arabia—a title used for the 1962 film based on his wartime activities.
Soon after the outbreak of war in 1914 Lawrence volunteered for the British Army & was stationed in Egypt. In 1916, he was sent to Arabia on an intelligence mission & quickly became involved with the Arab Revolt, providing, along with other British officers, liaison to the Arab forces. Working closely with Emir Faisal, a leader of the revolt, he participated in & sometimes led military activities against the Ottoman armed forces, culminating in the capture of Damascus in October 1918.
After the war, Lawrence joined the Foreign Office, working with both the British government & with Faisal. In 1922, he retreated from public life & spent the years until 1935 serving as an enlisted man, mostly in the Royal Air Force, with a brief stint in the Army. During this time, he wrote & published his best-known work, Seven Pillars of Wisdom, an autobiographical account of his participation in the Arab Revolt. He also translated books into English & wrote The Mint, which was published posthumously & detailed his time in the Royal Air Force working as an ordinary aircraftman. He corresponded extensively & was friendly with well-known artists, writers, & politicians. For the Royal Air Force, he participated in the development of rescue motorboats.
Lawrence's public image resulted in part from the sensationalised reporting of the Arab revolt by American journalist Lowell Thomas, as well as from Seven Pillars of Wisdom. In 1935, Lawrence was fatally injured in a motorcycle accident in Dorset.
Capture of Damascus;
Lawrence was involved in the build-up to the capture of Damascus in the final weeks of the war. He was not present at the city's formal surrender, much to his disappointment & contrary to instructions that he had issued, having arrived several hours after the city had fallen. Lawrence entered Damascus around 9 am on 1 October 1918 but was the third arrival of the day; the first was the 10th Australian Light Horse Brigade, led by Major A.C.N. 'Harry' Olden, who formally accepted the surrender of the city from acting Governor Emir Said. Lawrence was instrumental in establishing a provisional Arab government under Faisal in newly liberated Damascus, which he had envisioned as the capital of an Arab state. Faisal's rule as king, however, came to an abrupt end in 1920, after the battle of Maysaloun, when the French Forces of General Gouraud entered Damascus under the command of General Mariano Goybet, destroying Lawrence's dream of an independent Arabia.
During the closing years of the war, Lawrence sought to convince his superiors in the British government that Arab independence was in their interests – with mixed success. The secret Sykes-Picot Agreement between France & Britain contradicted the promises of independence that he had made to the Arabs and frustrated his work.
Princess Charlotte of Prussia died
Princess Charlotte of Prussia was born 24 July 1860 & was Duchess Consort of Saxe-Meiningen as the wife of Bernhard III, the duchy's last ruler.
Charlotte was born at the Neues Palais in Potsdam, she was the second child & eldest daughter of Prince Frederick of Prussia, a member of the House of Hohenzollern who became Crown Prince of Prussia in 1861 & German Emperor in 1888. Through her mother Victoria, Princess Royal, Charlotte was the eldest granddaughter of the British monarch Queen Victoria & her consort Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg & Gotha.
Princess Charlotte was a difficult child & indifferent student, with a nervous disposition. Her relationship with her demanding mother was strained. As she grew older, Charlotte developed a penchant for spreading gossip & causing trouble.
At the age of sixteen, she married Prince Bernhard of Saxe-Meiningen in 1878. Her husband's weak-willed personality had little effect on her. Known for spreading gossip & her eccentric personality, Princess Charlotte enjoyed Berlin society while frequently leaving her only child, Princess Feodora, in the care of family members. Charlotte & Feodora, in turn, also had a difficult relationship.
Charlotte's brother succeeded their father as Emperor Wilhelm II in 1888, increasing her social influence. Throughout her brother's reign, she was known for her mischief-making, & spent her life in between bouts of illness, in frivolous & extravagant pursuits.
She became Duchess of Saxe-Meiningen in 1914, only for her husband to lose his title with the end of World War I in 1918.
Charlotte died the following year of a heart attack in Baden-Baden. She had suffered from a lifetime of ill-health.
Most historians now believe she had porphyria, a genetic disease that afflicted other members of the British Royal Family, notably King George III of Great Britain.
Dame Julie Andrews, was born
Dame Julia Elizabeth Andrews, DBE (née Wells; born 1 October 1935) is an English actress, singer, & author. Andrews, a child actress and singer, appeared in the West End in 1948 & made her Broadway debut in The Boy Friend (1954). She rose to prominence starring in Broadway musicals such as My Fair Lady (1956), playing Eliza Doolittle, & Camelot (1960), playing Queen Guinevere. Andrews made her feature film debut in Mary Poppins (1964), & won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in the title role. She starred in The Sound of Music (1965), playing Maria von Trapp, & won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Comedy or Musical.
In 2000, Andrews was made a Dame by Queen Elizabeth II for services to the performing arts. In 2002, she was ranked #59 in the BBC's poll of the 100 Greatest Britons.
Andrews has won an Academy Award, a BAFTA, five Golden Globes, three Grammys, two Emmys, the Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award, the Kennedy Center Honors Award, & the Disney Legends Award. Apart from her musical career, she is also an author of children's books & has published an autobiography, Home: A Memoir of My Early Years (2008).
Concorde breaks the sound barrier for the first time.
The Aérospatiale/BAC Concorde is a British-French turbojet-powered supersonic passenger airliner that was operated from 1976 until 2003. It had a maximum speed over twice the speed of sound at Mach 2.04 (1,354 mph or 2,180 km/h at cruise altitude), with seating for 92 to 128 passengers. First flown in 1969, Concorde entered service in 1976 & continued flying for the next 27 years. It is one of only two supersonic transports to have been operated commercially; the other is the Soviet-built Tupolev Tu-144, which operated in passenger service from 1977 to 1978.