This Day In History
Wednesday, December 19, 2018
On This Day

Events

in 1866

Battle of Lissa –...
Battle of Lissa – The Austrian Navy , led by Admiral Wilhelm von Tegetthoff, defeats the Italian Navy near the island of Vis in the Adriatic Sea. The Battle of Lissa (sometimes called Battle of Vis) took place on 20 July 1866 in the Adriatic Sea near the Dalmatian island of Lissa ("Vis" in Croatian) and was a decisive victory for an outnumbered Austrian Empire force over a superior Italian force. It was the first major sea battle between ironclads and one of the last to involve deliberate ramming. The Italian navy fired roughly 1450 shots during the engagement, but failed to do any serious damage to an Austrian ship while losing two battleships. One of the main reasons of this bad performance was due to internal rivalry between the Italian fleet commanders: for example, Italian Vice Admiral Albini, with his group of ships, never participated in the battle. The engagement was made of several small battles: the main was between seven Austrian and four Italian ironclads and showed the ability of Tegetthoff to divide the bigger opponent and destroy the surrounded ironclads left alone.
naval battle, battle, Lissa, Austro-Prussian War

Births

in 1304
Francesco Petrarca

Francesco Petrarca, known in English as Petrarch, was an Italian scholar, poet and one of the earliest humanists. Petrarch is often called the "Father of Humanism". In the 16th century, Pietro Bembo created the model for the modern Italian language based on Petrarch's works, as well as those of Giovanni Boccaccio and, especially, Dante Alighieri. This would be later endorsed by the Accademia della Crusca. Petrarch's sonnets were admired and imitated throughout Europe during the Renaissance and became a model for lyrical poetry. He is also known for being the first to develop the concept of the "Dark Ages".
in 1914
Masa Niemi

Martti "Masa" Elis Niemi was a Finnish actor. Niemi started his career as a drummer, but became popular as a comedian. He is most famous for his role as "Pätkä" (in English: Stub) in all thirteen original Pekka ja Pätkä movies.

Deaths

in 1866
Bernhard Riemann

Georg Friedrich Bernhard Riemann was an influential German mathematician who made lasting contributions to analysis, number theory and differential geometry, some of them enabling the later development of general relativity.
in 1973
Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee (born Lee Jun-fan) was a Chinese American, Hong Kong actor, martial arts instructor, philosopher, film director, film producer, screenwriter, and founder of the Jeet Kune Do martial arts movement. He is widely considered by many commentators, critics, media and other martial artists to be the most influential martial artist, and a cultural icon.
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