1566 The Stationers Company was granted a monopoly.
1577 Peter P;lul Rubens was born.
1767 Britain passed the Townshend Revenue Act.
1900 Antoine de Saint-Exupery was born.
1928 A1 Smith was nominated as a presidential candidate.
1946 British authorities arrested more than 2,700 Zionists. (See August 31st and September 29th entries.)
1967 Israel united east and west Jerusalem.
1995 The space shuttle Atlantis linked up with the Mir space station.
A monopoly was created on this day in 1566. Great Britain’s Queen Mary had granted the Stationers Company guild the power to be the nation’s sole booksellers eight years earlier. But on this date they gained a total monopoly on the business of publishing. The guild consisted of printers, booksellers, and publishers nicknamed for the stalls or stations they set up to sell their wares. Their monopoly meant that every book title had to be registered in the company’s roster in advance. “Illegal” books were confiscated and burned. No guild member was allowed to publish the same book as another member. Healthy competition wasn’t even considered. No edition could exceed 1,250 copies. Best-sellers had to be reset and reprinted so printers would have steady work. Book prices soared in the absence of competition. Soon no one could afford to buy their products.
Peter Paul Rubens was born on this date in 1577, in Westphalia to a Flemish family. Unlike many starving artists of his time, Rubens did very well indeed—not merely in the mastery of his art but also in the size of his purse. If you visit Rubens’ house in
Antwerp, you will see quite an establishment. It is fair to say that, even though so many people have delighted in his work, in a material sense he got a lot more out of it.
We are generally familiar with the reasons for the Boston Tea Party in 1773. This so - called party protested the import tax levied by Britain on its colonies. But few remember that the whole thing really began on this date. In 1767, King George III gave his approval to the Townshend Acts which had been proposed by Chancellor of the Exchequer Charles Townshend. The acts taxed imports of glass, paper, lead, paints and tea to the colonies. The tea tax was retained long after the colonists boycotted and successfully repealed the other levies. Slowly but surely the resentment against “taxation without representation” laid the groundwork for the American Revolution.
It was considered almost revolutionary that John F. Kennedy, a Catholic, was elected President. But before that day, another Catholic candidate had won a major party Presidential nomination and today is the anniversary of that event. In 1924, Alfred E. Smith was denied the Democratic nomination because he was a Catholic. In 1928, he was not rejected. Another bastion of religious discrimination in America was breached.
An adventurer with a romantic soul was born on this day. In 1900, Antoine de Saint - Exupery was born in Lyon, France. His escapades as a test pilot, military reconnaissance pilot, and aviator were enough to fill a hundred adventure novels; and he penned quite a few of them himself. Saint-Exupery wrote popular books like Night Flight; Wind, Sand, and Storm-, and Flight to Arras, when he wasn’t involved in real-life adventures. But his most famous work was a children’s fable entitled The Little Prince. The moral of this classic story holds a fundamental secret to happiness: The best things in life are the simplest ones.
The first joint American-Russian space mission had taken place during a thaw in the Cold War, in 1975. The ice finally melted away twenty years later. And on this day in 1995, the U. S. space shuttle Atlantis linked up with Russia’s Mir space station in outer space. It was the first of seven scheduled missions to prepare both nations for a joint pioneering effort—the construction of an international space station. Its purpose sounds like something from the pages of a science fiction novel: the station will serve as a scientific laboratory and launching platform for a planned expedition to Mars.
Many Arab nations resented Great Britain’s involvement in the Holy Land following the First World War. But as the Second World War came to an end, troubles in British-held Palestine escalated. Tens of thousands of displaced European Jews moved to overtake the Holy Land in the name of Zionism—a radical religious and political movement that had originated in eastern Europe. Terrorism erupted in Jerusalem, and on this day in 1946, British authorities arrested more than 2,700 Zionists in the hope that it might end the plague of bombings and sniper attacks. It didn’t. Two years later, Great Britain was
Forced to leave Palestine, and Israel was born. Jerusalem was split in half so that Islamic holy places would not fall under Zionist jurisdiction. On this same day in 1967, Israel ignored international protests and united the city. The incident ignited a full-scale war. Neither side was willing to compromise their religious beliefs for the sake of political peace.