European Headlines: 11-15-2018

Germany (DW):Migrant arrivals in EU set to reach 5-year low;Illegal border crossings have continued to drop, putting this year’s rate on track to be the lowest since 2013, Frontex has said. Despite this, an EU dispute over the arrivals continues to feed anti-migrant sentiment.

(DW) Migrants refuse to disembark in Libya after being rescued at sea; The 94 passengers were rescued by a passing container ship last week as they were en-route to Italy. After being returned to Libya they have refused to get off the ship.

(DW)Alexei Navalny’s European court date puts pressure on Kremlin; The Russian dissident politician has been repeatedly arrested and tried for his protests. Each time, he has called on Europe’s human rights court for help. But will that path remain open after Thursday’s decision?

(DW) German prosecutors to investigate far-right AfD’s Alice Weidel over donations; Prosecutors have begun a probe into AfD leader Alice Weidel over the alleged use of foreign donations to pay for internet campaigning. The party received large sums of money from donors in Switzerland and Belgium.

(DW) Turkish court sentences German-Kurdish singer to six years in prison; A German woman has been found guilty of being a member of a terrorist organization by the Turkish government. She is the third German citizen in as many months to be sentenced to prison in Turkey.

(DW) Dutch court blocks bid to ban blackface Black Pete character; Activists wanted the court to block broadcasters from showing the character’s “racist characteristics.” One broadcaster justified airing images of Black Pete because he goes “down the chimney a lot.”

(DW) United States risks losing military edge, report says; A commission investigating Donald Trump’s defense strategy has said the US could lose a military conflict with China or Russia. It argued that the US’ ability to defend itself and its allies was in doubt.

(DW)Macedonian ex-PM escapes jail term, flees to Hungary; Hungarian strongman Viktor Orban and embattled former Macedonian PM Nikola Gruevski have long been allies. Facing extensive corruption allegations at home, Gruevski now appears set to request asylum in Budapest.

(DW) Massive Italian anti-mafia operation results in scores of arrests; Italy’s anti-mafia police have struck a major blow to the Italian mob in an international sting. Rival groups were said to have worked together to make billions through online gambling.

(DW)’These missiles can reach Berlin,’ warns Lithuania’s foreign minister; Lithuania’s Linas Linkevicius tells DW that Russia has been violating the terms of the INF nuclear arms treaty. He says action is necessary to force all parties to comply with the agreement.

France (France 24) France a ‘historic’ ally of US, not a vassal state, says Macron; French President Emmanuel Macron said in an interview on Wednesday two long-time allies like France and America should treat each other with respect, after US President Donald Trump attacked him on Twitter.

(France24) EU lawmakers seek checks on arms exports fueling Yemen conflict; Tougher checks on European Union arms exports are needed and sanctions should be imposed on those countries that flout the bloc’s rules, the European Parliament said on Wednesday.

(France24)UN Security Council lifts arms embargo, targeted sanctions on Eritrea; The UN Security Council on Wednesday lifted sanctions on Eritrea following a landmark peace deal with Ethiopia and a thaw with Djibouti that have buoyed hopes for positive change in the Horn of Africa.

(France24) Italy refuses to back down in budget standoff with EU; Italy’s populist government defied the European Commission Tuesday by sticking to its big-spending budget plan, risking financial sanctions in a high-stakes standoff with Brussels.

(France24) ‘Paris Call’: 51 states vow support for global rules on cyberweapons; Fifty-one states, including all EU members, have pledged their support for a new international agreement to set standards on cyberweapons and the use of the internet, the French government said Monday.

(France24) Deadly clashes erupt in Cameroon’s restive English-speaking region; Twenty-five separatists were killed Tuesday in fighting in a restive English-speaking region of Cameroon, security officials said Wednesday.

(France24) Ebola death toll in DR Congo tops 200; The death toll from an Ebola outbreak in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo has risen to more than 200, the health ministry said on Saturday.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

CONTRIBUTOR: Staff

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Epic of Ishtar and Izdubar: Fall of Erech (Col-2); Assyrian

O Moon-god, [1] hear my cry! With thy pure light
Oh, take my spirit through that awful night
That hovers o’er the long-forgotten years,
To sing Accadia’s songs and weep her tears!
‘Twas thus I prayed, when lo! my spirit rose
On fleecy clouds, enwrapt in soft repose;
And I beheld beneath me nations glide
In swift succession by, in all their pride:
The earth was filled with cities of mankind,
And empires fell beneath a summer wind.
The soil and clay walked forth upon the plains
In forms of life, and every atom gains
A place in man or breathes in animals;
And flesh and blood and bones become the walls
Of palaces and cities, which soon fall
To unknown dust beneath some ancient wall.
All this I saw while guided by the stroke
Of unseen pinions: Then amid the smoke
That rose o’er burning cities, I beheld
White Khar-sak-kur-ra’s[2] brow arise that held
The secrets of the gods–that felt the prose
Of Khasisadra’s ark; I heard the roar
Of battling elements, and saw the waves
That tossed above mankind’s commingled graves.
The mighty mountain as some sentinel
Stood on the plains alone; and o’er it fell
A halo, bright, divine; its summit crowned
With sunbeams, shining on the earth around
And o’er the wide expanse of plains;–below
Lay Khar-sak-kal-ama[3] with light aglow,
And nestling far away within my view
Stood Erech, Nipur, Marad, Eridu,
And Babylon, the tower-city old,
In her own splendor shone like burnished gold.
And lo! grand Erech in her glorious days
Lies at my feet. I see a wondrous maze
Of vistas, groups, and clustering columns round,
Within, without the palace;–from the ground
Of outer staircases, massive, grand,
Stretch to the portals where the pillars stand.
A thousand carved columns reaching high
To silver rafters in an azure sky,
And palaces and temples round it rise
With lofty turrets glowing to the skies,
And massive walls far spreading o’er the plains,
Here live and move Accadia’s courtly trains,
And see! the “pit-u-dal-ti”[4] at the gates,
And “masari”[5] patrol and guard the streets!
And yonder comes a “kis-ib”, nobleman,
With a young prince; and see! a caravan
Winds through the gates! With men the streets are filled!
And chariots, a people wise and skilled
In things terrestrial, what science, art,
Here reign! With laden ships from every mart
The docks are filled, and foreign fabrics bring
From peoples, lands, where many an empire, king,
Have lived and passed away, and naught have left
In history or song. Dread Time hath cleft
Us far apart; their kings and kingdoms, priests
And bards are gone, and o’er them sweep the mists
Of darkness backward spreading through all time,
Their records swept away in every clime.

Those alabaster stairs let us ascend,
And through this lofty portal we will wend.
See! richest Sumir rugs amassed, subdue
The tiled pavement with its varied hue,
Upon the turquoise ceiling sprinkled stars
Of gold and silver crescents in bright pairs!
And gold-fringed scarlet curtains grace each door,
And from the inlaid columns reach the floor:
From golden rods extending round the halls,
Bright silken hangings drape the sculptured walls.

But part those scarlet hangings at the door
Of yon grand chamber! Tread the antique floor!
Behold the sovereign on her throne of bronze,
While crouching at her feet a lion fawns;
The glittering court with gold and gems ablaze
With ancient splendor of the glorious days
Of Accad’s sovereignty. Behold the ring
Of dancing beauties circling while they sing
With amorous forms in moving melody,
The measure keep to music’s harmony.
Hear! how the music swells from silver lute
And golden-stringed lyres and softest flute
And harps and tinkling cymbals, measured drums,
While a soft echo from the chamber comes.

But see! the sovereign lifts her jeweled hand,
The music ceases at the Queen’s command;
And lo! Two chiefs in warrior’s array,
With golden helmets plumed with colors gay,
And golden shields, and silver coats of mail,
Obeisance make to her with faces pale,
Prostrate themselves before their sovereign’s throne
In silence brief remain with faces prone,
Till Ellat-gula [6] speaks: “My chiefs, arise!
What word have ye for me? What new surprise?”
Tur-tau-u, [7] rising, says, “O Dannat [8] Queen!
Thine enemy, Khum-baba[9] with Rim-siu[10]
With clanging shields, appears upon the hills,
And Elam’s host the land of Sumir fills.”
“Away, ye chiefs! Sound loud the “nappa-khu”! [11]
Send to their post each warrior “bar-ru”!”[12]
The gray embattlements rose in the light
That lingered yet from Samas’ [13] rays, ere Night
Her sable folds had spread across the sky.
Thus Erech stood, where in her infancy
The huts of wandering Accads had been built
Of soil, and rudely roofed by woolly pelt
O’er laid upon the shepherd’s worn-out staves,
And yonder lay their fathers’ unmarked graves.
Their chieftains in those early days oft meet
Upon the mountains where they Samas greet,
With their rude sacrifice upon a tree
High-raised that their sun-god may shining see
Their offering divine; invoking pray
For aid, protection, blessing through the day.
Beneath these walls and palaces abode
The spirit of their country–each man trod
As if his soul to Erech’s weal belonged,
And heeded not the enemy which thronged
Before the gates, that now were closed with bars
Of bronze thrice fastened.

See the thousand cars
And chariots arrayed across the plains!
The marching hosts of Elam’s armed trains,
The archers, slingers in advance amassed,
With black battalions in the centre placed,
With chariots before them drawn in line,
Bedecked with brightest trappings iridine,
While gorgeous plumes of Elam’s horses nod
Beneath the awful sign of Elam’s god.
On either side the mounted spearsmen far
Extend; and all the enginery of war
Are brought around the walls with fiercest shouts,
And from behind their shields each archer shoots.

Thus Erech is besieged by her dread foes,
And she at last must feel Accadia’s woes,
And feed the vanity of conquerors,
Who boast o’er victories in all their wars.
Great Subartu [14] has fallen by Sutu [15]
And Kassi, [16] Goim [17] fell with Lul-lu-bu, [18]
Thus Khar-sak-kal-a-ma [19] all Eridu [20]
O’erran with Larsa’s allies; Subartu
With Duran [21] thus was conquered by these sons
Of mighty Shem and strewn was Accad’s bones
Throughout her plains, and mountains, valleys fair,
Unburied lay in many a wolf’s lair.
Oh, where is Accad’s chieftain Izdubar,
Her mightiest unrivalled prince of war?

The turrets on the battlemented walls
Swarm with skilled bowmen, archers–from them falls
A cloud of winged missiles on their foes,
Who swift reply with shouts and twanging bows;
And now amidst the raining death appears
The scaling ladder, lined with glistening spears,
But see! the ponderous catapults now crush
The ladder, spearsmen, with their mighty rush
Of rocks and beams, nor in their fury slacked
As if a toppling wall came down intact
Upon the maddened mass of men below.
But other ladders rise, and up them flow
The tides of armed spearsmen with their shields;
From others bowmen shoot, and each man wields
A weapon, never yielding to his foe,
For death alone he aims with furious blow.
At last upon the wall two soldiers spring,
A score of spears their corses backward fling.
But others take their place, and man to man,
And spear to spear, and sword to sword, till ran
The walls with slippery gore; but Erech’s men
Are brave and hurl them from their walls again.
And now the battering-rams with swinging power
Commence their thunders, shaking every tower;
And miners work beneath the crumbling walls,
Alas! before her foemen Erech falls.
Vain are suspended chains against the blows
Of dire assaulting engines.

Ho! there goes
The eastern wall with Erech’s strongest tower!
And through the breach her furious foemen pour:
A wall of steel withstands the onset fierce,
But thronging Elam’s spears the lines soon pierce,
A band of chosen men there fight to die,
Before their enemies disdain to fly;
The “masari”[22] within the breach thus died,
And with their dying shout the foe defied.
The foes swarm through the breach and o’er the walls,
And Erech in extremity loud calls
Upon the gods for aid, but prays for naught,
While Elam’s soldiers, to a frenzy wrought,
Pursue and slay, and sack the city old
With fiendish shouts for blood and yellow gold.
Each man that falls the foe decapitates,
And bears the reeking death to Erech’s gates.
The gates are hidden ‘neath the pile of heads
That climbs above the walls, and outward spreads
A heap of ghastly plunder bathed in blood.
Beside them calm scribes of the victors stood,
And careful note the butcher’s name, and check
The list; and for each head a price they make.
Thus pitiless the sword of Elam gleams
And the best blood of Erech flows in streams.
From Erech’s walls some fugitives escape,
And others in Euphrates wildly leap,
And hide beneath its rushes on the bank
And many ‘neath the yellow waters sank.

The harper of the Queen, an aged man,
Stands lone upon the bank, while he doth scan
The horizon with anxious, careworn face,
Lest ears profane of Elam’s hated race
Should hear his strains of mournful melody:
Now leaning on his harp in memory
Enwrapt, while fitful breezes lift his locks
Of snow, he sadly kneels upon the rocks
And sighing deeply clasps his hands in woe,
While the dread past before his mind doth flow.
A score and eight of years have slowly passed
Since Rim-a-gu, with Elam’s host amassed,
Kardunia’s ancient capital had stormed.
The glorious walls and turrets are transformed
To a vast heap of ruins, weird, forlorn,
And Elam’s spears gleam through the coming morn.
From the sad sight his eyes he turns away,
His soul breathes through his harp while he doth play
With bended head his aged hands thus woke
The woes of Erech with a measured stroke:

O Erech! dear Erech, my beautiful home,
Accadia’s pride, O bright land of the bard,
Come back to my vision, dear Erech, oh, come!
Fair land of my birth, how thy beauty is marred!
The horsemen of Elam, her spearsmen and bows,
Thy treasures have ravished, thy towers thrown down,
And Accad is fallen, trod down by her foes.
Oh, where are thy temples of ancient renown?

Gone are her brave heroes beneath the red tide,
Gone are her white vessels that rode o’er the main,
No more on the river her pennon shall ride,
Gargan-na is fallen, her people are slain.
Wild asses[23] shall gallop across thy grand floors,
And wild bulls shall paw them and hurl the dust high
Upon the wild cattle that flee through her doors,
And doves shall continue her mournful slave’s cry.

Oh, where are the gods of our Erech so proud,
As flies they are swarming away from her halls,
The Sedu [24] of Erech are gone as a cloud,
As wild fowl are flying away from her walls.
Three years did she suffer, besieged by her foes,
Her gates were thrown down and defiled by the feet
Who brought to poor Erech her tears and her woes,
In vain to our Ishtar with prayers we entreat.

To Ishtar bowed down doth our Bel thus reply,
“Come, Ishtar, my queenly one, hide all thy tears,
Our hero, Tar-u-man-i izzu Sar-ri, [25]
In Kipur is fortified with his strong spears.
The hope of Kardunia, [26] land of my delight,
Shall come to thy rescue, upheld by my hands,
Deliverer of peoples, whose heart is a right,
Protector of temples, shall lead his brave bands.”

Awake then, brave Accad, to welcome the day!
Behold thy bright banners yet flaming on high,
Triumphant are streaming on land and the sea!
Arise, then, O Accad! behold the Sami![27]
Arranged in their glory the mighty gods come
In purple and gold the grand Tam-u[8] doth shine
Over Erech, mine Erech, my beautiful home,
Above thy dear ashes, behold thy god’s sign!

[Footnote 1: “O Moon-god, hear my cry!” (“Siu lici unnini!”) the name of the author of the Izdubar epic upon which our poem is based.]—-[Footnote 2: “Khar-sak-kur-ra,” the Deluge mountain on which the ark of Khasisadra (the Accadian Noah) rested.]—-[Footnote 3: “Khar-sak-kal-ama” is a city mentioned in the Izdubar epic, and was probably situated at the base of Khar-sak-kur-ra, now called Mount Elwend. The same mountain is sometimes called the “Mountain of the World” in the inscriptions, where the gods were supposed to sometimes reside.]—-[Footnote 4: “Pit-u-dal-ti,” openers of the gates.]—-[Footnote 5: “Masari,” guards of the great gates of the city, etc.]—-[Footnote 6: “Ellat-gula,” the queen of Erech, the capital of Babylonia.]—-[Footnote 7: “Tur-tan-u” was the army officer or general who in the absence of the sovereign took the supreme command of the army, and held the highest rank next to the queen or king.]—-[Footnote 8: “Dannat” (the “Powerful Lady”) was a title applied to the Queen, the mother of Izdubar (Sayce’s ed. Smith’s “Chal. Acc. of Gen.,” p. 184). We have here identified her with Ellat-gula, the Queen of Babylon, who preceded Ham-murabi or Nammurabi, whom the inscriptions indicate was an Accadian. The latter we have identified with Nimrod, following the suggestion of Mr. George Smith.]—-[Footnote 9: “Khumbaba” was the giant Elamitic king whom Izdubar overthrew. We identify him with the King of the Elamites who, allied with Rimsin or Rimagu, was overthrown by Nammurabi or Izdubar.]—-[Footnote 10: “Rim-siu,” above referred to, who overthrew Uruk, or Karrak, or Erech. He was King of Larsa, immediately south of Erech.]—-[Footnote 11: “Nap-pa-khu,” war-trumpet.]—-[Footnote 12: “Bar-ru,” army officer.]—-[Footnote 13: “Samas,” the sun-god.]—-[Footnote 14: “Subartu” is derived from the Accadian “subar” (“high”), applied by the Accadians to the highlands of Aram or Syria. It is probable that all these countries, viz., Subartu, Goim, Lullubu, Kharsak-kalama, Eridu, and Duran, were at one time inhabited by the Accadians, until driven out by the Semites.]—-[Footnote 15: “Sutu” is supposed to refer to the Arabians.]—-[Footnote 16: “Kassi,” the Kassites or Elamites. The Kassi inhabited the northern part of Elam.]—-[Footnote 17: “Goim,” or “Gutium,” supposed by Sir Henry Rawlinson to be the Goyim of Gen. xiv, ruled by Tidal or Turgal (“the Great Son”).]—-[Footnote 18: “Lul-lu-bu,” a country northward of Mesopotamia and Nizir.]—-[Footnote 19: “Kharsak-kala-ma,” the city supposed to lie at the base of Kharsak-kurra, or Mount Nizir, or Mount Elwend. The same city was afterward called Echatana.]—-[Footnote 20: “Eridu,” the land of Ur, or Erech.]—-[Footnote 21: “Duran,” Babylonia.]—-[Footnote 22: “Masari,” guards of the palace, etc.]—-[Footnote 23: See Sayce’s translation in the “Chal. Acc. of Gen.,” by Smith, p. 193.]—-[Footnote 24: “Sedu,” spirits of prosperity.]—-[Footnote 25: “Tar-u-mani izzu Sarri,” son of the faith, the fire of kings, or fire-king.]—-[Footnote 26: “Kardunia,” the ancient name of Babylon.]—-[Footnote 27: “Sami,” heavens (plural).]—-[Footnote 28: “Tamu,” dawn or sunrise, day.]

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: Babylonian and Assyrian Literature (1901); Translated by Leonidas Le Cenci Hamilton, M.A.
CONTRIBUTOR: John Hague

Epic of Ishtar and Izdubar: Coronation of Izdubar (Col-4); Assyrian

A crowd of maidens led a glorious van;
With roses laden the fair heralds ran,
With silver-throated music chant the throng,
And sweetly sang the coronation song:
And now we see the gorgeous cavalcade,
Within the walls in Accad’s grand parade
They pass, led by the maidens crowned with flowers,
Who strew the path with fragrance;–to the towers
And walls and pillars of each door bright cling
The garlands. Hear the maidens joyful sing!

“Oh, shout the cry! Accadians, joyful sing
For our Deliverer! Oh, crown him King!
Then strew his path with garlands, tulips, rose,
And wave his banners as he onward goes;
Our mighty Nin-rad comes, oh, raise the cry!
We crown Tar-u-ma-ni iz-zu sar-ri!

Away to Samas’ temple grand, away!
For Accad crowns him, crowns him there!
He is our chosen Sar[1] this glorious day,
Oh, send the Khanga[2] through the air!

Then chant the chorus, all ye hosts above!
O daughters, mothers, sing for him we love!
His glory who can sing, who brings us joy?
For hope and gladness all our hearts employ.
He comes, our hope and strength in every war:
We crown him as our king, our Izdubar!

Away to Samas’ temple grand, away!
For Accad crowns him, crowns him there!
He is our chosen Sar this glorious day,
Oh, send the Khanga through the air!”

Toward the temple filed the long parade,
The nobles led while Accad’s music played;
The harps and timbrels, barsoms, drums and flutes
Unite with trumpets and the silver lutes.
Surrounded by his chieftains rides the Sar
In purple robes upon his brazen car.
Bedecked with garlands, steeds of whitest snow
The chariot draw in state with movement slow,
Each steed led by a “kisib”, nobleman,
A score of beauteous horses linked in span.
The army follows with their nodding plumes,
And burnished armor, trumpets, rolling drums,
And glistening spears enwreathed with fragrant flowers,
While scarfs are waving from the crowded towers,
And shouts of joy their welcome loud proclaim,
And from each lip resounds their monarch’s name.

And now before the holy temple stands
The chariot, in silence cease the bands.
Around an altar stand the waiting priests,
And held by them, the sacrificial beasts.
The hero from his chair descends,
And bowing to the priests, he lowly bends
Before the sacred altar of the Sun,
And prays to Samas, Accad’s Holy One.

[3] “O Samas, I invoke thee, throned on high!
Within the cedars’ shadow bright thou art,
Thy footing rests upon immensity;
All nations eagerly would seek thy heart.
Their eyes have turned toward thee; O our Friend!
Whose brilliant light illuminates all lands,
Before thy coming all the nations bend,
Oh, gather every people with thy hands!
For thou, O Samas, knowest boundaries
Of every kingdom, falsehood dost destroy,
And every evil thought from sorceries
Of wonders, omens, dreams that do annoy,
And evil apparitions, thou dost turn
To happy issue; malice, dark designs;
And men and countries in thy might o’erturn,
And sorcery that every soul maligns.
Oh, in thy presence refuge let me find!
From those who spells invoke against thy King,
Protect one! and my heart within thine, oh, bind!
[4]Thy breath within mine inmost soul, oh, bring!
That I with thee, O Samas, may rejoice.
And may the gods who me created, take
Thy hands and lead me, make thy will my choice,
[5]Direct my breath, my hands, and of me make
They servant, Lord of light of legions vast,
O Judge, thy glory hath all things surpassed!”

The King then rises, takes the sacred glass,[6]
And holds it in the sun before the mass
Of waiting fuel on the altar piled.
The centring rays–the fuel glowing gild
With a round spot of fire and quickly, spring
Above the altar curling, while they sing!

[7] “Oh, to the desert places may it fly,
This incantation holy!
O spirit of the heavens, us this day
Remember, oh, remember!
O spirit of the earth, to thee we pray,
Remember! Us remember!

“O God of Fire! a lofty prince doth stand,
A warrior, and son of the blue sea,
Before the God of Fire in thine own land,
Before thy holy fires that from us free
Dread Darkness, where dark Nuk-khu reigns.
Our prince, as monarch we proclaim,
His destiny thy power maintains,
Oh, crown his glory with wide fame!

“With bronze and metal thou dost bless
All men, and givest silver, gold.
The goddess with the horned face
Did bless us with thee from of old.
From dross thy fires change gold to purity;
Oh, bless our fire-king, round him shine
With Heaven’s vast sublimity!
And like the earth with rays divine,
As the bright walls of Heaven’s shrine.”

[Footnote 1: “Sar,” king.]—-[Footnote 2: “Khanga,” chorus.]—-[Footnote 3: One of the Accadian psalms is here quoted from “Chaldean Magic,” by Lenormant, pp. 185, 186. See also “Records of the Past,” vol. xi. pl. 17, col. 2.]—-[Footnote 4: Literally, “Right into my marrow, O Lords of breath.”]—-[Footnote 5: Literally, “Direct the breath of my mouth!”]—-[Footnote 6: Sacred glass, sun-glass used to light the sacred fire.]—-[Footnote 7: Incantation to Fire (“Records of the Past,” vol. xi. p. 137). The Accadian and Assyrian text is found in “C.I.W.A.,” vol. iv. pl. 14, and on tablet K. 49,002, in the British Museum.]

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: Babylonian and Assyrian Literature; Translated by Leonidas Le Cenci Hamilton, M.A.
CONTRIBUTOR: John Hague

The Old Farmer’s Almanac for Nov. 13: NOVEMBER 2018 NIGHT SKY GUIDE

 

NOVEMBER 2018 NIGHT SKY GUIDE

BEST NIGHT SKY EVENTS OF NOVEMBER 2018
Bob Berman
Mid-November, the Moon pairs up with Saturn and Mars. Venus gets brighter. And another meteor shower heads our way. See what’s up tonight in our November 2018 Sky Watch!

SKY WATCH NOVEMBER 2018

by Bob Berman, as featured in The Old Farmer’s Almanac

Our astronomy editor, Bob Berman, sets you up for the best in night sky sightseeing each month, with special tips for finding bright planets and stars, eclipses, meteor showers, and other celestial objects and events.

In late autumn, after most of the leaves have fallen, the forest suddenly becomes transparent. The contours of the land leap out in 3-D, exposing all kinds of subtleties. And many of them are small, bashful—the kind of sights that require us to look up, instead of down. Above our heads, beyond the changed colors of the lingering leaves, we’ll see the night sky as it changes throughout November.

BRIGHT PLANETS

Morning Planets

  • The action switches to the predawn sky as planet Venus has transitioned out of the evening sky and into the morning sky. It’s the brightest object in the sky after the Sun and Moon.
  • The Moon meets returning Venus on the 6th. Look towards sunrise in the eastern sky around 6 A.M.
  • Venus hovers near Virgo’s Spica from the 6th to the 12th and stands 25 degrees high by month’s end.
  • Every day, Venus gets brighter. By mid-month, Venus’ disk will be about 10% illuminated by sunshine. By the month’s end, Venus’ disk will be 25% illuminated in sunshine.

Click here for a free, printable star chart to navigate Venus and the night sky!

Evening Planets

  • On the 1st, Jupiter meets Mercury low in the west; both soon vanish.
  • Mars stands about a third of the way up the southern sky at nightfall. The red planet, having resumed its normal eastward motion against the stars, speeds from Capricornus into Aquarius. Just 12 arcseconds wide and at magnitude zero, it is dimming, losing half its width and is now too small to show useful detail in telescopes.
  • Saturn shines clear above the southwestern horizon at nightfall. The ringed planet shifts lower in the sky each night, preparing to depart the night sky soon.
  • The Moon floats left of ever-lower Saturn on the 11th.
  • The Moon and Mars pair up on November 13 to 16.

METEOR SHOWERS

November boasts two meteor showers.

  • The Taurid meteor showers are visible between November 9 and 12. While this is a minor shower with about 5 meteors per hour, the Taurids are known for bright fireballs—a particularly bright meteor. Seeing one is quite a thrill. Even better, the Moon is now in a waning crescent phase. Rising shortly before sunrise, that means no moonlight to ruin the prime time viewing hours, centered on about 12:30 a.m. local time. See Moon rise and set times here.
  • The Leonids meteor shower peaks on the night of Saturday, November 17 and early the following morning, November 18. A modest shower, the Leonids bring about 10 meteors per hour at their peak. Due to a bright waxing gibbous Moon this year, viewers will see fewer meteors. Check your Moon phase. The best time to look is before dawn around 3 A.M. so you have to set that alarm!

See our 2018 Meteor Shower Calendar (and get ready for the biggest shower of the year in December!).

NOVEMBER’S MOON

November’s Moon was called the Beaver Moon by both the Algonquin tribes and colonial Americans. The Native Americans used the monthly Moons and nature’s signs as a sort of calendar to track the seasons. Why this name? Back then, this was the month to set beaver traps before the swamps froze, to ensure a supply of warm winter furs. The November full Moon was also called the Full Frost Moon by other Native Americans.

November’s full Moon rises November 23, 12:39 A.M. EST.

This Day in History for November 13: Daredevil Sam Patch’s Final, Fatal Stunt (1829)

Daredevil Sam Patch’s Final, Fatal Stunt (1829)

Sam Patch (1799[1]November 13,1829),known as “The Yankee Leaper”, became the first famous American daredevil after successfully jumping from a raised platform into the Niagara River near the base of Niagara Falls in 1829.

Biography

Early life

Sam Patch was born to Mayo Greenleaf Patch and Abigail McIntire and wasthe fifth child of the family that included Molly, Greenleaf, Nabby, Samuel (diedas an infant), Samuel, and Issac.[1]

Sam was raised in Pawtucket, Rhode Island[2]where he working as a child laborer spinning cotton in a mill.[3] When he not working, he entertaine
other boys by jumping off the mill dam. By his early 20s he wasworking at a mill in Paterson, New Jersey, and was jumping off ever-higherspots. He was beginning to attract crowds for his well-advertised stunts. OnSeptember 30, 1827,[2] he jumped off the 70-foot Passaic Falls in New Jersey, pleasing a large crowd that had gathered. He repeated this jump atleast two more times. On August 11, 1828 Patch jumped 100 feet at Hoboken, New Jersey. He became known in the press as “Patch the New JerseyJumper.”[2] Patch continued his career jumping from bridges, factory walls, andship’s masts.

Niagara Falls

In the fall of 1829, Patch gained fame by leaping into the Niagara River near the base of Niagara Falls. Patch was the starattraction at an event designed to draw visitors to the falls. A 125-foot ladder was extended over the river below Goat Islandopposite the Cave of the Winds. Less than an hour before the scheduled noon jump, a chain securing the ladder to the cliffwall snapped, breaking 15 feet from the ladder. Rescheduled for 4 PM, Patch jumped on time. A boat circled near the entrypoint, but Patch did not appear. When he was finally spotted on the shore, a great roar went up from the crowd.

Bad weather and the delay in his arrival drew a disappointingly small crowd for this jump, so Patch announced he wouldrepeat the feat a second time October 17.[2] A few days later, 10,000 gathered to watch him keep his word.

Following his feat at Niagara falls, Sam Patch achieved nationwide fame. His name became a household word[4] and hisslogan “some things can be done as well as others” became a popular slang expression across the nation.

Rochester

Shortly after, Patch went to Rochester, New York, to challenge the 99-foot High Falls of the Genesee River. On Friday,November 6, 1829, in front of an estimated 7,000 to 8,000 spectators,[5] Patch went out onto a rock ledge in the middle of thefalls. He first threw a pet bear cub over the falls and the cub managed to swim safely to shore. Patch then successfully jumpedafter the bear.[2]

Last jump

His first jump into the Genesee River raised a disappointing amount of money,[2] so he decided to repeat the stunt one weeklater on November 13, 1829 (Friday the 13th). This time, he increased the height of the jump to 125 feet by constructing a 25-foot stand.[2] Accounts from the 8,000 present differ on whether he actually jumped or fell, but he did not achieve his normalfeet-first vertical entry.[5] A loud impact was heard and he never surfaced. Rumors were passed that he had hidden in a caveat the base of the falls, and was enjoying all the excitement he had created. But his frozen body was found in the ice inCharlotte (Rochester) early the next spring by Silas Hudson. Local ministers and newspapers were quick to blame the crowdfor urging him to jump, and put the guilt of his death on them.[2]

He was buried in Charlotte Cemetery, near where his body was found.[6] A wooden board (now gone) was placed over hisgrave. It read: “Sam Patch – Such is Fame”.[2]

Legacy

Sam’s legacy continued to build in the years following his death. He became a popular folk hero in both written poems andstories as well as the hero of a series of theatrical plays by actor Danforth Marble entitled Sam Patch the Yankee Jumper,followed by Sam Patch at Home, a London Tour of Sam Patch in Franceand Sam Patch the Jumper (1844). PresidentAndrew Jackson named his horse Sam Patch in Sam’s honor.

Sam’s legacy continues into the 21st century with media references including;

  • The band Piñataland chronicled Patch’s 1827 jump on a song titled “The Fall of Sam Patch” on their 2008 album Songsfor the Forgotten Future Vol. 2.

Literary references

“Sam Patch’s Fearsome Leap,” a tale in Grandfather Stories by Samuel Hopkins Adams, is a reconstructed first-hand account of the day of Patch’slast leap. It is not clear whether Adams based the tale on a real first-handaccount or wrote it as historical fiction.

Patch appears as a “daring moral hero” in the works of Hawthorne and Melville,[1] and also appears in the poem “Paterson” by William Carlos Williams.

References

  1. a b c Johnson, Paul. Sam Patch, the Famous Jumper (New York: Hilland Wang, 2003) ISBN 0-8090-8388-4.
  2. a b c d e f g h i Rosenberg-Naparsteck, Ruth (Summer 1991). “The Real Simon Pure Sam Patch” (PDF). Rochester History (RochesterPublic Library) LII (3). ISSN 0035-7413Retrieved January 6, 2008.
  3. ^ Wilson, James Grant; John Fiske (1888). “Patch, Samuel”Appletons’ cyclopaedia of American biography IV669Retrieved 4January 2012.
  4. ^ Smith, Seba; Smith, Elizabeth Oakes Prince (December, 1856). “Life and Death of Sam Patch”United StatesMagazine (J. M. Emerson & Co.): 567–570Retrieved July 7, 2009.
  5. a b “Sam Patchs Last Leap” (PDF). New York TimesAugust 12, 1883Retrieved June 22, 2008.
  6. ^ Thomas, W. Stephen; Ruth Rosenberg-Naparsteck (October 1988). “Sleep City The Sesquicentenneial History of Mt. Hope Cemetery” (PDF). Rochester History (Rochester Public Library) L (4): 4. ISSN 0035-7413RetrievedDecember 31, 2007.

Inspiration for the Day for Nov. 13: How Long

How Long

BY MADISYN TAYLOR

When we take the time to sit with our emotions fully, it will become apparent that the emotion was a catalyst for much needed healing.

Our emotions color our lives with varying palettes. Sometimes we feel a strong emotion in reaction to something that has happened, but emotions also visit us seemingly out of the blue, flooding us unexpectedly with joy or grief or melancholy. Like the weather, they come and go, influencing our mental state with their particular vibration. Sometimes a difficult emotion hangs around longer than we would like, and we begin to wonder when it will release its hold on us. This is often true of grief stemming from loss, for example, or lingering anger over a past event.

Usually, if we allow ourselves to feel our emotions fully when they come up, they recede naturally, giving way to another and another. When an emotion haunts us, it is often because we are afraid of really feeling it. Emotions like despair and rage are powerful, and it is natural to want to hold them at bay. Certainly, we don’t want to let them take us over so that we say or do things we later regret. When we are facing this kind of situation, it can be helpful to ask the spirit, “How long do I need to sit with these emotions, how long do I need to feel these emotions before they can pass?” If you ask sincerely and wait, an answer will come. Setting a time limit on your engagement with that difficult emotion may be just the technique you need to face it fully.

When you have a sense of how much time you need to spend, set a timer. Sit down and make yourself available to the emotion that has been nagging you. All you have to do is feel it. Avoid getting attached to it or rejecting it. Simply let it ebb and flow within you. Emotions are by their nature cyclical, so you can trust that just as one reaches its apex it will pass. Each time you sit with its presence without either repressing or acting out, you will find that that difficult emotion was the catalyst for much needed emotional healing.

Source

DailyOM

How You Spend Money, According to Your Zodiac Sign

How does your sign handle money?

Woman Coins

How does your horoscope sign spend money? For example, what would you buy if you won the lottery and had to spend it all within 48 hours? Fashionable Gemini might splurge on a closet full of shoes, while Taurus might stock the cellar with fine wine. What would YOU buy? Look to Astrology for insight about the spending styles of every sign.

Aries (March 21 – April 19)

To an Aries, everything that passes through those hot little hands of yours is a toy. And money is a particularly fun toy. It gets you whatever you want, the second you want it — which, as the commercial says, is in your book, “priceless.” Of course, whether or not you’re close to the limit on the plastic you’re carrying around doesn’t matter … impulse is your middle name. That goes double when you’ve got some extra Benjamins in your pocket.

 

Taurus (April 20 – May 20)

Quality or quantity? Lots of us spend hours of our lives mulling that over. You, however, have the answer deeply imbedded in the back of your quality-conscious brain: both. Fortunately, you’re a money-magnet, and an expert at finding objects, experiences and people who answer those descriptions, so why settle? When you find what you want (after lots of highly pleasurable comparison shopping), you plunk down the cash or plastic, smile a thank you and toddle off happily to enjoy yourself.

 

Gemini (May 21 – June 20)

Unlike your Taurus neighbors, you don’t want just one, special, unusual thing, experience or friend — you’re a collector. You like lots of what you like. In fact, if “variety is the spice of life” wasn’t written by, or for, a Gemini — well, then it wasn’t written at all. So when it comes to laying down a stack of bills, pulling out your ATM or deciding whether or not to wreak major havoc on your Visa, if the decision involves a collection, a medley or an assortment, you’re in.

 

Cancer (June 21 – July 22)

Home, kids and family. Those are the keywords most often associated with your sign. What’s not often mentioned is the fact that you also suffer, occasionally, from bouts of guilt — when you feel like you haven’t paid enough attention to any or all of those matters. So when it comes to spending your hard-earned pesos, it’s easiest for you to do it — to justify it, that is — when you’re making your home more of a nest than it already is (as if that’s possible), or buying a gift for a loved one.

 

Leo (July 23 – August 22)

Royalty deserves the best and nothing less. You, Leo, just so happen to be the lion, the sign of royalty. Why else would there be all those lions on those ancient coats of arms? That means when it comes to spending, you don’t hesitate to pull out all the stops — for yourself, sure, but even more so for the ones you love, since you’re also famous for treating those closest to your heart (also ruled by Leo) even more like royalty. Careful, though. Spending like royalty means you’ve got to earn like royalty … or end up in the gallows.

 

Virgo (August 23 – September 22)

You’ve probably got a great big jar of silver coins, another one full of strictly pennies, some bills tucked away in a coffee can, and a real savings account somewhere. Or if you’re superstitious, there may be a tightly-wrapped bundle of cash in any number of other places. Regardless of where it is, right down to the penny, you’re quite sure of exactly what’s there. When you decide to spend any of it, there’s got to be a very good, logical reason for it — and a terrific sale going on.

 

Libra (September 23 – October 22)

Spending on yourself? Well, yes — but only for beauty products, beauty procedures or the latest fashions, and only to keep your significant other (current or prospective) happy and interested. Spending on others? Especially the ones you love best? That’s easy. You love them, which entitles them to the very best, and nothing less. It doesn’t matter whether it’s their birthday, a holiday or just a Wednesday. If you see something that you’re sure will make them smile, you’ll buy it. Take it easy on the plastic, though. Remember, your charming company is the greatest gift of all.

 

Scorpio (October 23 – November 21)

Your nature is intense — no doubt about that. It’s been written about for centuries — and it doesn’t take an astrologer to tell you that. That goes for every action you take, from picking up groceries to investing in a mutual fund. So when you take off on a shopping trip, unlike your Aries or Aquarius cousins, you definitely don’t need anyone to go along with you, holding onto your plastic, cash, checkbook or hand. You’re definitely equipped to handle it on your own.

 

Sagittarius (November 22 – December 21)

As your friend Shakespeare once said, Sag, “Here’s the rub” — when it comes to spending money, it’s like every other department of life: unbridled. Whether it’s in your hand, in your account, en route next week or on sale tomorrow doesn’t matter. If you see it and you want it, you want it now. Right now, or not at all. Fortunately, your planet Jupiter will be in your sign for over a year, so you’ll likely be able to do that. Still, just because you may have a bit extra to toss around, try not to do it indiscriminately.

 

Capricorn (December 22 – January 19)

Separating yourself from the money you make isn’t often an easy job — okay, it’s never an easy job, because you very rarely have an easy job. As such, with everything else you do, spending more than a quarter on the paper may involve charts, diagrams, months of research, and lots and lots of comparison shopping. Don’t let anyone talk you down, either. You’re one of the three smartest shoppers in the zodiac, so you’ll invariably end up with what you want.

 

Aquarius (January 20 – February 18)

You’ve heard the expression “impulse buyer.” You’ve probably also learned by now that you, along with a couple of other signs, definitely fall into that category. More importantly, though, before you fall prey to impulse spending for any reason, consider one thing: is what I’m about to buy unique? If so, and you really love it, you’ll hock everything but Grandma’s jewelry to buy it. If it’s what everyone else is wearing, doing, or a place everyone else is going to, forget it. Individuality is what’s most important.

 

Pisces (February 19 – March 20)

You’re motivated by one thing, for the most part: emotions. In fact, to be perfectly blunt, at times you can be a salesperson’s dream: the impulse buyer. That doesn’t mean you spend irrationally, but when an item or experience triggers a pleasant emotional memory, it’s obvious — and any salesperson worth their salt will pick that up from the second the bell on the door jingles. Protect yourself from them. Think of them as sharks (not far from the truth) and bring a shopping chaperone along if you’re planning to spend more than $50. Either that, or shop online — with your chaperone in a chair by your side.

 

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The Daily Horoscopes for Tuesday, November 13th

The Daily Horoscopes for Tuesday, November 13th

Claire Petulengro, Astrologer

From The Astrology Room

 

ARIES (March 21st-April 20th)
A strong sign such as you needs to look the future straight in the eye and just give it a wink. You know as well as I do, that you spent much of this year trying to keep up with the competition. Setting your own standards and believing in your own visions promises success.

TAURUS (April 21st-May 21st)
Don’t speak for the sake of it but use your time and energy to focus on what you want the end result to be, rather than how things appear to others on this very emotive day. News from far away gives you reason to get more excited about this Christmas than most.

GEMINI (May 22nd-June 21st)
Are you making changes for the sake of it, or do you really like this new path which is opening up to you? Being honest about where you see yourself in the months ahead can help you make choices you won’t have to back out of at a later date.

CANCER (June 22nd-July 23rd)
Try to have more faith in yourself and where you see your life going in the months ahead. Some would suggest that you are allowing jealousy to force your hand. Doing the right thing will ensure you put your life on its best path yet in the days and weeks ahead.

LEO (July 24th-August 23rd)
You may not realise it, but your words and actions over the last few weeks could be responsible for some really major changes your close ones will be making. Talk to them, before it’s too late and before you both say and do things which cannot be taken back.

VIRGO (August 24th-September 23rd)
New invites make your life a more interesting place to be. You no longer worry about how things look to those around, but you are willing, ready and able to speak and act only from the heart. Some of you have proposals coming your way. Prepare to be impressed.

LIBRA (September 24th-October 23rd)
Don’t compromise yourself Libra. You’re all you’ve got. Knowing what you really want from deals done at this time is half the battle. Take time out to check forms you need to fill out. I see that events this week will demand you have tied up all you started this month asap.

SCORPIO (October 24th-November 22nd)
Don’t cancel any of the arrangements you have made for yourself, but stick to plans. I know and you will too soon enough, that you have the support you thought was missing. You just have to ask for it. Time spent with family reveals who really stretched the truth recently.

SAGITTARIUS (November 23rd-December 21st)
I know it has proven hard to get on with loved ones as you would like, but events which unfold over the coming days will prove to you that you have what it takes to move your career up to the next level. You just need to find a little more faith in yourself and who you are. Ring now to end your week on a high.

CAPRICORN (December 22nd-January 20th)
I know there are many challenges you have to face this year, but what you don’t know is that you have help in hidden places. Try to be fair in family issues which have been causing such a difficult air. Time is the key to the atmosphere mellowing for you and those involved.

AQUARIUS (January 21st-February 19th)
No one is allowed to dull your sparkle. Don’t let them think they can or you will only be giving them power. Playing fair in business can put you ahead of the competition, especially if you promise to give them the time they have been asking for to complete current projects.

PISCES (February 20th-March 20th)
The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams. Knowing how far is too far to go with financial disputes can make all the difference as to whether you are in or out of pocket.

 

For Claire’s in-depth horoscope for this week, call 0905 072 0237
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American Revolution: Major Events 1776

The following list is important dates during the year 1776;

                                                                     1776

1 January: American forces besieging Boston reorganized in accordance with Congressional resolve of preceding November, making this portion of patriot Army “Continental in every respect”; but only about 5,500 were present and fit for duty.

1 January: First patriot flag bearing seven red and six white stripes raised at Cambridge, Massachusetts, in recognition of reorganization of Continental forces before Boston.

1 January: Governor Dunmore, following patriot refusal to allow him to send ashore parties for provisions, bombarded and set fire to Norfolk, Virginia’s largest town.

5 January: New Hampshire adopted new written constitution replacing its colonial charter, first of 13 colonies to do so.

5 January: Continental Congress ordered work on Constitution Island (opposite West Point) suspended and emphasis placed on Fort Montgomery.

6 January: Alexander Hamilton’s New York artillery battery constituted organization that became only Continental Army unit to have officially recognized modern active army descendant, the 1st Battalion, 5th Artillery.

10 January: Royal Governor Josiah Martin of North Carolina, from aboard British sloop Scorpion, urged loyalists to gather near Wilmington on Cape Fear River to collaborate with forthcoming British Army offensive in South.

10 January: Thomas Paine’s pamphlet Common Sense published in Philadelphia, urging American declaration of independence.

12-14 January: Sailors from British ships stationed at Newport raided Patience, Hope, and Prudence Islands in Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island, and on Prudence engaged militia from Bristol and Warren in 3-hour fight.

20 January: Patriot General Philip Schuyler in New York leading 3,000 militia forced Sir John Johnson of Johnstown, New York, and 700 other loyalists, to surrender, thereby breaking back of loyalist resistance in Albany area and assuring neutrality of neighboring Indians for some time to come.

20 January: General Henry Clinton left Boston with about 1,200 troops to lead British expedition against Carolinas.

23 January: Patriot group from Elizabethtown (modern Elizabeth), New Jersey, led by William Alexander (better, if inaccurately, known as Lord Stirling) and Elias Dayton, captured British supply ship Blue Mountain Valley 40 miles off Sandy Hook.

24 January: Colonel Henry Knox, Washington’s artillery chief, who on the proceeding 15 November had been sent to fetch cannon captured at Ticonderoga, returned to Cambridge, Massachusetts, with 55 guns.

27 February: Congress resolved to establish separate Middle and Southern Departments of Continental Army, former including New York through Maryland and latter Virginia, the Carolinas, and Georgia.

27 February: Loyalist force of 1,400 including 1,000 Scotch Highlanders advancing toward Wilmington in hope of joining up with British Army force under Clinton was ambushed at Moore’s Creek Bridge, North Carolina, about 15 miles north of Wilmington, and then caught between patriot forces in front and rear. In the fight at bridge, loyalists lost 50-70, patriots 2; but afterward more than 850 loyalists were taken prisoner.

2-5 March: Heavy patriot bombardment of Boston began on 2 March, and on night of 4-5 March darkness concealed Washington’s occupation of Dorchester Heights and emplacement there of cannon from Ticonderoga.

3 March: Secret Committee of Correspondence decided to send “commercial” agent to France to purchase military supplies, and Congress selected Silas Deane of Connecticut for this mission.

3-4 March: Patriot sailors and marines attacked New Providence (now Nassau) in Bahamas, capturing 100 cannon and mortars and a large quantity of other useful military stores. This action was first in which American marines participated as an organized unit.

7 March: Royal Governor Sir James Wright, who fled Savannah, Georgia, on 11 February to take refuge on British warship, returned with naval reinforcements on 6 March, captured 11 rice laden merchant ships, and threatened to attack Savannah from Hutchinson’s Island opposite. Counterattack drove off British and left patriots in control of Savannah for next three years.

9-13 March: British sloop Otter sailing up Chesapeake Bay was attacked and driven away by Maryland ship Defense and two Maryland militia companies stationed at Chariton Creek, Northampton County, Virginia.

17 March: General Howe having abandoned initial plan to attack new patriot fortifications on Dorchester Heights and realizing they made British position in Boston untenable, had decided on 7 March to evacuate Boston and on this date did so, taking with him 1,000 loyalists, and sailing to Halifax, Nova Scotia.

23 March: Congress authorized privateering, resolving “that the inhabitants of these colonies be permitted to fit out armed vessels, to cruise on the enemies of the United Colonies.”

25 March: Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Charles Carrol of Carrolton, and Samuel Chase left Philadelphia as envoys of Congress to Canada, to negotiate with Canadians toward union with 13 coastal colonies in rebellion.

6 April: Congress, disregarding British Navigation Acts and Prohibitory Act of December 1775, opened ports of United Colonies to trade of all nations, except for trade with British dominions and in British goods, and except also for import of slaves.

12 April: Provincial Congress of North Carolina instructed its delegates in Continental Congress to vote for independence first of new governments of United Colonies to do so.

13 April: General Washington arrived in New York, to which bulk of Continental forces that had besieged Boston had already been moved.

2 May: France secretly allotted munitions from royal arsenals valued at one million livres ($200,000) to American patriots, and Spain followed suit.

4 May: Act known as “Rhode Island Declaration of Independence” passed by its General Assembly. While not mentioning independence specifically it denied King’s authority and authorized Rhode Island delegates to accept any Congressional measures they deemed prudent and effectual.

6 May: With large reinforcements under General John Burgoyne about to reach Quebec, Canada, General Carleton led sally from city that ended American siege begun preceding December and started patriot troops under General John Thomas on precipitous retreat.

8-9 May: Thirteen Pennsylvania galleys attacked two British warships in Delaware River off mouth of Christiana Creek (near Wilmington), Delaware, and drove them down the river. Patriots lost one killed and two wounded in actions on successive days.

15 May: Virginia Convention instructed Richard Henry Lee and its other delegates to Continental Congress to propose independence.

16 May: At The Cedars, Canada, on St. Lawrence River about 30 miles below Montreal, patriot force of 400 surrendered almost without fighting and smaller relieving force was also overwhelmed.

19 May: Near Nantasket, Massachusetts, long boats from British men-of-war attempted to board patriot ships Franklin and Lady Washington, but were driven off after hand-to-hand fighting in which captain of Franklin and one other were killed and British may have lost as many as 70 killed including those drowned.

4 June: British expeditionary force of more than 2,000 troops under General Clinton and nine warships under Admiral Sir Peter Parker arrived off Charleston, South Carolina. General Charles Lee assigned by Congress to command Southern Department, arrived same day to direct defenses.

7 June: Richard Henry Lee, delegate from Virginia, proposed resolution by Congress declaring independence of 13 United Colonies from Great Britain.

8-9 June: After retreat from Quebec, 2,000 of best troops of reinforced patriot Army in Canada attacked Three Rivers (Trois Riveres), half way between Montreal and Quebec. Unknown to patriots Three Rivers had been heavily reinforced and attackers lost nearly 400 in casualties, British 17. This action ended any American hope of maintaining hold on St. Lawrence valley.

9 June: Montreal, Canada, evacuated by patriot force of 300 under General Arnold.

10 June: Pierre Augustin Caron Beaumarchais, French playwright and watchmaker, who had set up fictitious Hortalez et Cie as intermediary to transmit French and Spanish munitions to American patriots, received one million livres in gold from French government to initiate financing of his operations.

11 June: Congress appointed committee of five delegates to draft declaration of independence.

12 June: Virginia Convention adopted Declaration (or Bill) of Rights, drafted by George Mason.

12 June: Remnants of American forces, beaten at Trois Riveres and subject to numerous ambushes in route, arrived at base at Sorel, Canada.

12-13 June: On 12 June, Congress resolved to establish Board of War and Ordnance, to consist of five of its members, and next day this board, ancestor of War Department-Department of the Army headquarters, was established.

14 June: Remnant of American troops in St. Lawrence valley, now under General John Sullivan, began retiring from Sorel, Canada, pressed by advancing British forces. Patriots retreated first to Isle aux Noir at north end of Lake Champlain and by early July to Crown Point, New York, thus ending Canadian invasion of 1775-76.

25 June: General William Howe arrived off Sandy Hook, New Jersey, with small British force, but one that was to grow to nearly 32,000 encamped on Staten Island, New York, by 12 August, largest single military body in America during Revolutionary War.

28 June: In New York City Thomas Hickey, belonging to General Washington’s personal guard, executed for “sedition and mutiny,” after discovery of loyalist inspired plot that allegedly included plan to assassinate Washington and other patriot generals.

28 June: British naval forces attacked fortified Sullivan’s Island guarding entrance to harbor of Charleston, South Carolina. Coordinated land attack by Clinton’s troops from neighboring Long Island proved impossible because of deep water, and British warships were worsted in spirited exchange of fire with patriot forces. Patriots lost about 37, the British 225, and British gave up and sailed away, ending efforts to invade the South for nearly three years.

2 July: General Howe with 9,300 troops landed unopposed on Staten Island, New York.

2 July: Congress at Philadelphia approved resolution of independence introduced by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia on 7 June.

4 July: Congress at Philadelphia approved formal Declaration of Independence, as drafted by Thomas Jefferson and other members of committee appointed for this purpose, and in doing so “solemnly published and declared that these United Colonies are, and of Right, ought to be Free and Independent States.”

8-10 July: Patriot forces attacked and captured Gwynn Island, Virginia, off western shore of Chesapeake Bay where Governor Dunmore had taken refuge with some 500 white and Negro loyalist’s troops. Dunmore and survivors were forced to flee, and after raid up Potomac River went to Lynnhaven Roads near Cape Henry and then to New York.

16 July: Lord Dunmore landed some of his force on St. George’s Island, Maryland, near mouth of Potomac River, but was driven off by local militia.

23 July: Lord Dunmore in sailing up Potomac River destroyed several plantations and then turned into Occoquan Creek, Virginia, to its falls and village, where he destroyed mill before being driven off by Prince William County militia.

22 August: British disembarked 15,000 troops on Long Island, New York, and during next few days Washington sent large patriot reinforcements to Long Island to meet this threat and British also built up their initial landing force.

27 August: Battle of Long Island (Long Island Campaign) fought between about 10,000 American defenders and 22,000 British and German troops. Americans were badly defeated and pushed into narrow confinement of Brooklyn Heights, losing about 1,400 (1,100 captured) against British losses of 375.

28 August: At Jamaica, New York, after British victory day before, militia detachment of 100 commanded by patriot General Nathaniel Woodhull was overwhelmed by much larger British force.

29-30 August: Washington first reinforced Brooklyn Heights after the defeat in Battle of Long Island, then in masterly fashion secretly withdrew his entire force at night across the East River onto Manhattan Island, above New York City, without loss.

6-7 September: In New York harbor Sgt. Ezra Lee attempted first submarine attack in history of warfare in David Bushnell’s “American Turtle,” but copper bottoms of British ships off Governor’s Island were too thick to be damaged by powder charges released from “Turtle.”

9 September: Congress resolved that in future all of its commissions and other instruments should be issued in name of United States instead of United Colonies as heretofore.

11 September: Three-man delegation from Congress (Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and Edward Rutledge) discussed possibilities of peace with Admiral Lord Richard Howe on Staten Island, but fruitlessly when Americans discovered Howe had no powers to negotiate, only to refer proposals to London.

15 September: British troops from Long Island, under protection of warships, crossed East River and routed patriot forces at Kip’s Bay (presently 34th Street) on Manhattan Island almost without firing shot. Washington managed to extricate his troops from New York City which British then occupied.

16 September: After Washington withdrew his army to heights of northwestern Manhattan Island, he sent out small reconnaissance force to check British near site of present Columbia University. With both sides putting in reinforcement’s as the battle of Harlem Heights developed. Patriots lost 130, British and German troops involved about 170, and American morale was much improved by this successful holding action

16 September: Congress resolved that 88 battalions of Continental Army troops, apportioned among the states according to population, should be enlisted as soon as possible for duration of war. This action was essential since existing Continental forces were enlisted only to end of 1776.

20 September: Congress adopted Articles of War, “rules and articles to govern the armies of the United States.”

21-22 September: Captain Nathan Hale of Connecticut captured by British on Manhattan Island while returning to American lines, and executed as spy. On 12 September he had volunteered for an intelligence mission within British lines on Long Island.

23 September: Patriot force of 240 attempted to recapture Montresor’s (now Randall’s) Island, New York, at East River end of Harlem River, but was repulsed with loss of 14.

26 September: Congress appointed Benjamin Franklin, Silas Deane, and Thomas Jefferson as commissioners to court of France. When Jefferson declined to serve, Arthur Lee was appointed in his place.

11-13 October: By June 1776 British had 13,000 troops in Canada, but invasion path by water route southward from the St. Lawrence River was barred until October by flotilla hastily constructed by General Benedict Arnold on Lake Champlain. On 11 October, Arnold led his ships northward and met principal British ships at Valcour Island, New York, then lost most of his ships in next two days and a quarter of his troops were casualties. Although Arnold was defeated, his operations thwarted British invasion from Canada in 1776, when it might have been fatal to patriot cause.

12 October: General Howe’s attempt to flank Washington’s force in northern Manhattan started with landing at Throg’s Neck, New York (northern end of modern Throg’s Neck Bridge over Long Island Sound), but British were unable to get across bridge and causeway to dry ground because of stiff patriot rifle and cannon fire.

14 October: After defeating Arnold’s flotilla on Lake Champlain, General Carleton’s invading force on this date occupied Crown Point, New York, but because of American strength at Ticonderoga and lateness of season withdrew to Canada on 3 November.

18 October: Frustrated at Throg’s Neck, General Howe shifted northward to Pell’s Point and fought an action at Pelham, New York. American units posted there delayed British advance and helped Washington’s safe withdrawal with main Continental force from Manhattan to White Plains.

22-23 October: Force of Continentals attempted to surprise and cut off from main British Army Maj. Robert Rogers’ “Queen’s American Rangers,” stationed at Mamaroneck, New York. Surprise was incomplete, but patriots came off with 36 prisoners and booty, at cost of 15 casualties.

27 October: British attacked Fort Washington, New York, from both land and river sides, but attack was driven off with considerable loss to enemy, including one warship badly damaged.

28 October: Having failed to flank Washington’s main force of 14,500, Howe attacked it with 13,000 at White Plains, New York. Although Americans again withdrew northward after battle, British suffered heavier losses (300 or more to 150) and once again failed to trap and destroy Washington’s army.

9-10 November: Washington with part of his army crossed Hudson River and moved into northeastern New Jersey.

13-29 November: Patriots from Machias, Maine, and Bay of Fundy region, attacked and besieged Fort Cumberland, Nova Scotia (near modern Amherst), but were repelled when reinforcements arrived from Halifax. This was principal armed effort of American patriots to get New England settlers of Acadia aligned with American cause.

16 November: Fort Washington, New York, surrendered to British. After battle of White Plains, Howe pulled his army back for another attack on Fort Washington on northern Manhattan Island overlooking Hudson River. Using 8,000 troops he forced surrender of more than 2,800 Continentals after fighting that cost enemy about 450 killed and wounded and Americans about 300.

20 November: Fort Lee, New Jersey, on Hudson River opposite Fort Washington, made untenable after latter’s capture, was abandoned to British with heavy losses in materiel, and some 160 Americans were taken prisoner.

21 November-7 December: After loss of Fort Lee, Washington with about 4,000 troops retreated across New Jersey and Delaware River into Pennsylvania, with some of Howe’s forces under General Charles Cornwallis following in close pursuit to Delaware.

8 December: With Washington’s forces safely across Delaware River and in possession of all small boats that might have been used to follow him across, Howe’s advanced forces occupied Trenton, New Jersey.

12 December: Constitution by Congress of regiment of light dragoons and appointment of Elisha Sheldon of Connecticut as its commander mark establishment of Cavalry.

13 December: American General Charles Lee captured at Basking Ridge, New Jersey, after two of his guard were killed and two wounded.

19 December: Opening tract of The Crisis, “these are the times that try men’s souls,” by Thomas Paine, published in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

20 December: Congress, with British so near, adjourned at Philadelphia and on this date met in Baltimore, Maryland.

26 December: General Clinton and Admiral Parker with 6,000 British troops occupied Newport, Rhode Island, providing the British with an important naval base in New England.

26 December: About 2,400 patriot troops under Washington having re-crossed the Delaware River surprised 1,400-man Hessian garrison at Trenton, New Jersey (Trenton Campaign), killing and wounding about 105 and capturing 918, with American losses at most 4 killed and 4 wounded.

27 December: In view of critical situation, Congress in Baltimore resolved to grant General Washington almost dictatorial powers over military affairs for ensuing six months including authority to recruit 22 additional battalions.

29-31 December: After escorting Hessians captured on 26 December across Delaware, Washington returned to New Jersey and reoccupied Trenton.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: War of the American Revolution; BY: Robert W. Coakley & Stetson Conn
CONTRIBUTOR: Frances Thompson