This Day In History
Monday, May 21, 2018
On This Day

Events

in 1642

Abel Tasman becomes the...
Abel Tasman becomes the first European to discover the island Van Diemen's Land. Van Diemen's Land was the original name used by most Europeans for the island of Tasmania, now part of Australia. The Dutch explorer Abel Tasman was the first European to land on the shores of Tasmania. Landing at Blackman's Bay and later having the Dutch flag flown at North Bay, Tasman named the island Anthoonij van Diemenslandt in honour of Anthony van Diemen, the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies who had sent Tasman on his voyage of discovery in 1642. Between 1772 and 1798 only the South East of the island was visited. Tasmania was not known to be an island until Matthew Flinders and George Bass circumnavigated it in the Norfolk in 1798-99.
Abel Tasman, discover, Tasmania

in 1859

Charles Darwin publishes «On...
Charles Darwin publishes «On the Origin of Species», the anniversary of which is sometimes called "Evolution Day" Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species is a work of scientific literature which is considered to be the foundation of evolutionary biology. Its full title was On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. For the sixth edition of 1872, the short title was changed to The Origin of Species. Darwin's book introduced the scientific theory that populations evolve over the course of generations through a process of natural selection. It presented a body of evidence that the diversity of life arose by common descent through a branching pattern of evolution. Darwin included evidence that he had gathered on the Beagle expedition in the 1830s and his subsequent findings from research, correspondence, and experimentation.
Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species

in 1950

The «Storm of the...
The «Storm of the Century», a violent snowstorm, paralyzes the northeastern United States and the Appalachians, bringing winds up to 100 mph and sub-zero temperatures. The Great Appalachian Storm of November 1950 was a large extratropical cyclone which moved through the Eastern United States, causing significant winds, heavy rains east of the Appalachians, and blizzard conditions along the western slopes of the mountain chain. Power was out to more than 1,000,000 customers during this event. In all, the storm impacted 22 states, killing 353, and creating US$66.7 million in damage (1950 dollars). At the time, U.S. insurance companies paid more money out to their policy holders for damage resulting from this cyclone than for any other previous storm or hurricane.
storm





Births

in 1632
Baruch Spinoza

Baruch de Spinoza was a Dutch Jewish philosopher. Revealing considerable scientific aptitude, the breadth and importance of Spinoza's work was not fully realized until years after his death. By laying the groundwork for the 18th century Enlightenment and modern biblical criticism, he came to be considered one of the great rationalists of 17th-century philosophy.
in 1898
Liu Shaoqi

Liu Shaoqi was a Chinese revolutionary, statesman, and theorist. He was Chairman of the People's Republic of China, China's head of state, from 27 April 1959 to 31 October 1968, during which he implemented policies of economic reconstruction in China.
in 1954
Emir Kusturica

Emir Nemanja Kusturica is a Serbian filmmaker, actor and musician, recognized for several internationally acclaimed feature films. He is a two-time winner of the Palme d'Or at Cannes (for When Father Was Away on Business and Underground), as well as being a Commander of the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.

Deaths

in 1991
Freddie Mercury

Freddie Mercury (born Farrokh Bulsara) was a British musician, singer and songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist of the rock band Queen.
in 2005
Pat Morita

Noriyuki "Pat" Morita was an American actor of Japanese descent who was well-known for playing the roles of Matsuo "Arnold" Takahashi on Happy Days and Mr. Miyagi in the «The Karate Kid» movie series, for which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in 1984.
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