Showing posts with label Yugoslavia. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Yugoslavia. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

June 29th in stamps Jacques Cartier is the first European to reach Prince Edward Island, Peter I of Serbia, George Washington Goethals

Here are some events that happened on June 29th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1534 – Jacques Cartier is the first European to reach Prince Edward Island.

Jacques Cartier (December 31, 1491 – September 1, 1557) was a Breton explorer who claimed what is now Canada for France. Jacques Cartier was the first European to describe and map the Gulf of Saint Lawrence and the shores of the Saint Lawrence River, which he named "The Country of Canadas", after the Iroquois names for the two big settlements he saw at Stadacona (Quebec City) and at Hochelaga (Montreal Island).

Some stamps and a First Day Cover from France and Canada depicting Jacques Cartier

Canada #1011 FDC Jacques Cartier 1984 Dual Joint France #1923


CANADA STAMP 7 — 10p CARTIER - 1855


France 1934 Fourth Centenary of Cartier


The Fleet of Cartier Canada 1908



1844 Born: Peter I of Serbia (d. 1921)

Peter I (Serbian Cyrillic: Петар I Карађорђевић, romanized: Petar I Кarađorđević; 11 July 1844 – 16 August 1921) reigned as the last king of Serbia (1903–1918) and as the first king of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (1918–1921). Since he was the king of Serbia during a period of great Serbian military success, he was remembered by the Serbian people as King Peter the Liberator, and also as Old King.

Peter was Karađorđe's grandson and third son of Persida Nenadović and Prince Alexander Karađorđević, who was forced to abdicate. Peter lived with his family in exile. He fought with the French Foreign Legion in the Franco-Prussian War. He joined as a volunteer under the alias Peter Mrkonjić in the Herzegovina Uprising (1875–77) against the Ottoman Empire.

He married Princess Zorka of Montenegro, daughter of King Nicholas, in 1883. She gave birth to his five children, including Prince Alexander. After the death of his father in 1885, Peter became head of the Karađorđević dynasty. After a military coup d'état and the murder of King Alexander I Obrenović in 1903, Peter became King of Serbia.

As king, he advocated a constitutional setup for the country and was famous for his libertarian politics. Rule of king Peter was marked with the great exercise of political liberties, freedom of the press, national, economical and cultural rise, and it is sometimes dubbed "golden" or "Periclean age".

King Peter was the supreme commander of the Serbian army in the Balkan wars. Because of his age, on 24 June 1914, he proclaimed his son, Alexander, heir-apparent to the throne, as regent. In the First World War he and his army retreated across the Principality of Albania.

Stamps from Serbia and Yugoslavia (Kingdom of S.H.S.) depicting Peter I of Serbia 

Serbia 1911, King Peter I

Yugoslavia 1920 - King Peter I

Yugoslavia 1920 King Peter I 10 Dinar


1858 Born: George Washington Goethals, American general and engineer, co-designed the Panama Canal (d. 1928)

George Washington Goethals (June 29, 1858 – January 21, 1928) was a United States Army General and civil engineer, best known for his administration and supervision of the construction and the opening of the Panama Canal. He was the State Engineer of New Jersey and the Acting Quartermaster General of the United States Army

The Panama Canal (Spanish: Canal de Panamá) is an artificial 82 km (51 mi) waterway in Panama that connects the Atlantic Ocean with the Pacific Ocean. The canal cuts across the Isthmus of Panama and is a conduit for maritime trade. Canal locks are at each end to lift ships up to Gatun Lake, an artificial lake created to reduce the amount of excavation work required for the canal, 26 m (85 ft) above sea level, and then lower the ships at the other end. The original locks are 32.5 m (110 ft) wide. A third, wider lane of locks was constructed between September 2007 and May 2016. The expanded canal began commercial operation on June 26, 2016. The new locks allow transit of larger, neo-Panamax ships, capable of handling more cargo.

The construction of the Panama Canal is where the expression "Another Day, Another Dollar" comes from, as the workers were rumored to be paid a dollar a day for their

France began work on the canal in 1881, but stopped because of engineering problems and a high worker mortality rate. The United States took over the project in 1904 and opened the canal on August 15, 1914. One of the largest and most difficult engineering projects ever undertaken, the Panama Canal shortcut greatly reduced the time for ships to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, enabling them to avoid the lengthy, hazardous Cape Horn route around the southernmost tip of South America via the Drake Passage or Strait of Magellan and the even less popular route through the Arctic Archipelago and the Bering Strait.

Colombia, France, and later the United States controlled the territory surrounding the canal during construction. The US continued to control the canal and surrounding Panama Canal Zone until the 1977 Torrijos–Carter Treaties provided for handover to Panama. After a period of joint American–Panamanian control, in 1999, the canal was taken over by the Panamanian government. It is now managed and operated by the government-owned Panama Canal Authority.

Annual traffic has risen from about 1,000 ships in 1914, when the canal opened, to 14,702 vessels in 2008, for a total of 333.7 million Panama Canal/Universal Measurement System (PC/UMS) tons. By 2012, more than 815,000 vessels had passed through the canal. It takes 11.38 hours to pass through the Panama Canal.The American Society of Civil Engineers has ranked the Panama Canal one of the seven wonders of the modern world

Various stamps depicting the Panama Canal

USA 2c Panama Canal


Canal Zone Airmail Panama Canal

Panama Canal Opens 1998



Tuesday, May 18, 2021

May 18th in stamps Roger Joseph Boscovich, Napoleon Bonaparte, Abraham Lincoln, Nicholas II of Russia, Laveran

Here are some events that happened on May 18th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1711 Born: Roger Joseph Boscovich, Ragusan physicist, astronomer, and mathematician (d. 1787)

Roger Joseph Boscovich (18 May 1711 – 13 February 1787) was a physicist, astronomer, mathematician, philosopher, diplomat, poet, theologian, Jesuit priest, and a polymath from the Republic of Ragusa (modern-day Dubrovnik, Croatia). He studied and lived in Italy and France where he also published many of his works.

Boscovich produced a precursor of atomic theory and made many contributions to astronomy, including the first geometric procedure for determining the equator of a rotating planet from three observations of a surface feature and for computing the orbit of a planet from three observations of its position. In 1753 he also discovered the absence of atmosphere on the Moon.

Stamps from Croatia, the Vatican and Yugoslavia depicting Boscovich

Croatia NDH 1943 Ruder Boskovic


Vatican Rudjer Boscovic Astronomer


Yugoslavia 1987 - Maxicard Ruder Boskovic


1804 – Napoleon Bonaparte is proclaimed Emperor of the French by the French Senate.

Napoleon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821), born Napoleone di Buonaparte, was a French statesman and military leader who became famous as an artillery commander during the French Revolution. He led many successful campaigns during the French Revolutionary Wars and was Emperor of the French as Napoleon I from 1804 until 1814 and again briefly in 1815 during the Hundred Days. Napoleon dominated European and global affairs for more than a decade while leading France against a series of coalitions during the Napoleonic Wars. He won many of these wars and a vast majority of his battles, building a large empire that ruled over much of continental Europe before its final collapse in 1815. He is considered one of the greatest commanders in history, and his wars and campaigns are studied at military schools worldwide. Napoleon's political and cultural legacy has made him one of the most celebrated and controversial leaders in human history.  


Napoleon's influence on the modern world brought liberal reforms to the numerous territories that he conquered and controlled, such as the Low Countries, Switzerland, and large parts of modern Italy and Germany. He implemented fundamental liberal policies in France and throughout Western Europe. His Napoleonic Code has influenced the legal systems of more than 70 nations around the world. British historian Andrew Roberts states: "The ideas that underpin our modern world—meritocracy, equality before the law, property rights, religious toleration, modern secular education, sound finances, and so on—were championed, consolidated, codified and geographically extended by Napoleon. To them he added a rational and efficient local administration, an end to rural banditry, the encouragement of science and the arts, the abolition of feudalism and the greatest codification of laws since the fall of the Roman Empire". 

Stamps from France and Monaco commemorating Napoleon

Monaco 1969 Bicentenary Birth of Napoleon

France 1969 Napoleon As a Young Officer And Birthplace, Ajaccio


1860 – Abraham Lincoln wins the Republican Party presidential nomination over William H. Seward, who later becomes the United States Secretary of State.

Abraham Lincoln (February 12, 1809 – April 15, 1865) was an American statesman and lawyer who served as the 16th president of the United States from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. Lincoln led the nation through the American Civil War, its bloodiest war and its greatest moral, constitutional, and political crisis. He preserved the Union, abolished slavery, strengthened the federal government, and modernized the U.S. economy.

Born in Kentucky, Lincoln grew up on the frontier in a poor family. Self-educated, he became a lawyer, Whig Party leader, Illinois state legislator and Congressman. In 1849, he left government to resume his law practice, but angered by the success of Democrats in opening the prairie lands to slavery, reentered politics in 1854. He became a leader in the new Republican Party and gained national attention in 1858 for debating national Democratic leader Stephen A. Douglas in the 1858 Illinois Senate campaign. He then ran for President in 1860, sweeping the North and winning. Southern pro-slavery elements took his win as proof that the North was rejecting the constitutional rights of Southern states to practice slavery. They began the process of seceding from the union. To secure its independence, the new Confederate States of America fired on Fort Sumter, one of the few U.S. forts in the South. Lincoln called up volunteers and militia to suppress the rebellion and restore the Union.

As the leader of the moderate faction of the Republican Party, Lincoln confronted Radical Republicans, who demanded harsher treatment of the South; War Democrats, who rallied a large faction of former opponents into his camp; anti-war Democrats (called Copperheads), who despised him; and irreconcilable secessionists, who plotted his assassination. Lincoln fought the factions by pitting them against each other, by carefully distributing political patronage, and by appealing to the American people. His Gettysburg Address became an iconic call for nationalism, republicanism, equal rights, liberty, and democracy. He suspended habeas corpus, and he averted British intervention by defusing the Trent Affair. Lincoln closely supervised the war effort, including the selection of generals and the naval blockade that shut down the South's trade. As the war progressed, he maneuvered to end slavery, issuing the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863; ordering the Army to protect escaped slaves, encouraging border states to outlaw slavery, and pushing through Congress the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which outlawed slavery across the country.

Lincoln managed his own re-election campaign. He sought to reconcile his damaged nation by avoiding retribution against the secessionists. A few days after the Battle of Appomattox Court House, he was shot by John Wilkes Booth, an actor and Confederate sympathizer, on April 14, 1865, and died the following day. Abraham Lincoln is remembered as the United States' martyr hero. He is consistently ranked both by scholars and the public as among the greatest U.S. presidents.

US stamps and a First Day Cover depicting Abraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln FDC


Abraham Lincoln scott 304


Abraham Lincoln scott 584


1868 Born: Nicholas II of Russia (d. 1918)

Nicholas II or Nikolai II Alexandrovich Romanov (18 May  1868 – 17 July 1918), known in the Russian Orthodox Church as Saint Nicholas the Passion-Bearer, was the last Tsar of Russia, ruling from 1 November 1894 until his forced abdication on 15 March 1917. His reign saw the fall of the Russian Empire from one of the foremost great powers of the world to economic and military collapse. His memory was reviled by Soviet historians as a weak and incompetent leader whose decisions led to military defeats and the deaths of millions of his subjects. By contrast Anglo-Russian historian Nikolai Tolstoy, leader of the International Monarchist League, says, "There were many bad things about the Tsar's regime, but he inherited an autocracy and his acts are now being seen in perspective and in comparison to the terrible crimes committed by the Soviets."

As Emperor, Nicholas gave limited support to the economic and political reforms promoted by top aides Sergei Witte and Pyotr Stolypin, but they faced too much aristocratic opposition to be fully effective. He supported modernization based on foreign loans and close ties with France, but resisted giving the new parliament (the Duma) major roles. He was criticised for the Khodynka Tragedy, antisemitic pogroms, Bloody Sunday, the violent suppression of the 1905 Russian Revolution, the repression of political opponents, and his perceived responsibility for defeat in the Russo-Japanese War (1904–1905), which saw the annihilation of the Russian Baltic Fleet at the Battle of Tsushima, the loss of Russian influence over Manchuria and Korea, and the Japanese annexation of the north of South Sakhalin Island.

Nicholas signed the Anglo-Russian Entente of 1907, which was designed to counter Germany's attempts to gain influence in the Middle East; it ended the Great Game of confrontation between Russia and the British Empire. He supported Serbia and approved the mobilization of the Russian Army on 30 July 1914. In response, Germany declared war on Russia on 1 August 1914 and its ally France on 3 August 1914, starting the First World War. The aristocracy was alarmed at the powerful influence of the despised peasant priest Grigori Rasputin over the tsar. The severe military losses led to a collapse of morale at the front and at home, leading to the fall of the House of Romanov in the February Revolution of 1917. Nicholas abdicated on behalf of himself and his son. With his family he was imprisoned by the Bolsheviks and executed in July 1918.

Some Russian stamps depicting Tsar Nicholas II

Tsar Nicholas II of Russia

Tsar Nicholas II of Russia



1922 Died: Charles Louis Alphonse Laveran, French physician and parasitologist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1845)

Charles Louis Alphonse Laveran (18 June 1845 – 18 May 1922) was a French physician who won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1907 for his discoveries of parasitic protozoans as causative agents of infectious diseases such as malaria and trypanosomiasis. Following his father, Louis Théodore Laveran, he took up military medicine as his profession. He obtained his medical degree from University of Strasbourg in 1867.

At the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War in 1870, he joined the French Army. At the age of 29 he became Chair of Military Diseases and Epidemics at the École de Val-de-Grâce. At the end of his tenure in 1878 he worked in Algeria, where he made his major achievements. He discovered that the protozoan parasite Plasmodium was responsible for malaria, and that Trypanosoma caused trypanosomiasis or African sleeping sickness. In 1894 he returned to France to serve in various military health services. In 1896 he joined Pasteur Institute as Chief of the Honorary Service, from where he received the Nobel Prize. He donated half of his Nobel prize money to establish the Laboratory of Tropical Medicine at the Pasteur Institute. In 1908, he founded the Société de Pathologie Exotique.

Laveran was elected to French Academy of Sciences in 1893, and was conferred Commander of the National Order of the Legion of Honour in 1912.

Swedish stamp depicting Laveran and Kipling, 1907 Nobel Prize winners

Sweden 1967 Nobel Prize Winners Laveran

Sunday, May 16, 2021

May 16th in stamps Vauquelin, Tesla, Django Reinhardt, Tito

Here are some events that happened on May 16th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1763 Born: Louis Nicolas Vauquelin, French pharmacist and chemist (d. 1829)

Prof Louis Nicolas Vauquelin (16 May 1763 – 14 November 1829) was a French pharmacist and chemist. He was the discoverer of both chromium and beryllium.

Contributions to chemistry

At first his work appeared as that of his master and patron, then in their joint names; in 1790 he began to publish on his own, and between that year and 1833 his name is associated with 376 papers. Most of these were simple records of patient and laborious analytical operations, and it is perhaps surprising that among all the substances he analysed he only detected two new elements, beryllium in 1798 in beryl and chromium in 1797 in a red lead ore from Siberia. He also managed to get liquid ammonia at atmospheric pressure. Later with Fourcroy, he identified a metal in a platinum residue they called ‘ptène’, This name ‘ptene’ or ‘ptène’ was reported as an early synonym for osmium.

Either together or successively he held the offices of inspector of mines, professor at the School of Mines and at the Polytechnic School, assayer of gold and silver articles, professor of chemistry in the College de France and at the Jardin des Plantes, member of the Council of Industry and Commerce, commissioner on the pharmacy laws, and finally professor of chemistry to the Medical Faculty, to which he succeeded on Fourcroy's death in 1809. His lectures, which were supplemented with practical laboratory teaching, were attended by many chemists who subsequently attained distinction.

A lesser known contribution and finding of his included the study of hens fed a known amount of mineral. "Having calculated all the lime in oats fed to a hen, found still more in the shells of its eggs. Therefore, there is a creation of matter. In that way, no one knows."

Final achievements, days and legacy

From 1809 he was professor at the University of Paris. In 1816, he was elected a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. He was elected to the Chamber of Deputies in 1828. In 1806, working with asparagus, he and Pierre Jean Robiquet (future discoverer of the famous red dye alizarin, then a young chemist and his assistant) isolated the amino acid asparagine, the first one to be discovered. He also discovered pectin and malic acid in apples, and isolated camphoric acid and quinic acid. His death occurred while he was on a visit to his birthplace.

Among his best known works is "Manuel de l'essayeur" (Manual of the assayer).

The plant genus Vauquelinia is named in his honor, as is the Vauquelin, an egg white foam associated with molecular gastronomy, and the mineral vauquelinite, discovered at the same mine as the crocoite from which Vauquelin isolated chromium.


French stamp depicting Vauquelin

France 1963 Louis Nicolas Vauquelin, French pharmacist and chemist (d. 1829)




1888 – Nikola Tesla delivers a lecture describing the equipment which will allow efficient generation and use of alternating currents to transmit electric power over long distances.

Nikola Tesla (10 July 1856 – 7 January 1943) was a Serbian-American inventor, electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, and futurist who is best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current (AC) electricity supply system.

Born and raised in the Austrian Empire, Tesla received an advanced education in engineering and physics in the 1870s and gained practical experience in the early 1880s working in telephony and at Continental Edison in the new electric power industry. He emigrated in 1884 to the United States, where he would become a naturalized citizen. He worked for a short time at the Edison Machine Works in New York City before he struck out on his own. With the help of partners to finance and market his ideas, Tesla set up laboratories and companies in New York to develop a range of electrical and mechanical devices. His alternating current (AC) induction motor and related polyphase AC patents, licensed by Westinghouse Electric in 1888, earned him a considerable amount of money and became the cornerstone of the polyphase system which that company would eventually market.


Here are some stamps from Yugoslavia, Moldova, Serbia, Serbia and Montenegro, and India depicting Nikola Tesla

Yugoslavia Nikola Tesla


Yugoslavia Nikola Tesla


Moldova Nikola Tesla


Serbia Nikola Tesla


Serbia and Montenegro Nikola Tesla


Serbia Nikola Tesla


Ukraine Nikola Tesla


Yugoslavia Nikola Tesla


1953 Died: Django Reinhardt, Belgian guitarist and composer (b. 1910)

Jean Reinhardt (23 January 1910 – 16 May 1953), known to all by his Romani nickname Django, was a Belgian-born Romani-French jazz guitarist and composer. He was the first major jazz talent to emerge from Europe and remains the most significant.

With violinist Stéphane Grappelli, Reinhardt formed the Paris-based Quintette du Hot Club de France in 1934. The group was among the first to play jazz that featured the guitar as a lead instrument. Reinhardt recorded in France with many visiting American musicians, including Coleman Hawkins and Benny Carter, and briefly toured the United States with Duke Ellington's orchestra in 1946. He died suddenly of a stroke at the age of 43.

Reinhardt's most popular compositions have become standards within gypsy jazz, including "Minor Swing", "Daphne", "Belleville", "Djangology", "Swing '42", and "Nuages". Jazz guitarist Frank Vignola claims that nearly every major popular-music guitarist in the world has been influenced by Reinhardt. Over the last few decades, annual Django festivals have been held throughout Europe and the U.S., and a biography has been written about his life. In February 2017, the Berlin International Film Festival held the world premiere of the French film Django.

Stamps from Franc and Belgium depicting Django Reinhardt

France 1993 Django Reinhardt


Belgium Music, Jazz, Guitarist Django Reinhardt


1974 – Josip Broz Tito is elected president for life of Yugoslavia.

Josip Broz (7 May 1892 – 4 May 1980), commonly known as Tito, was a Yugoslav communist revolutionary and statesman, serving in various roles from 1943 until his death in 1980. During World War II, he was the leader of the Partisans, often regarded as the most effective resistance movement in occupied Europe. While his presidency has been criticized as authoritarian and concerns about the repression of political opponents have been raised, Tito has traditionally been seen as a benevolent dictator.

He was a popular public figure both in Yugoslavia and abroad. Viewed as a unifying symbol, his internal policies maintained the peaceful coexistence of the nations of the Yugoslav federation. He gained further international attention as the chief leader of the Non-Aligned Movement, alongside Jawaharlal Nehru of India, Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt, and Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana.

Broz was born to a Croat father and Slovene mother in the village of Kumrovec, Austria-Hungary (now in Croatia). Drafted into military service, he distinguished himself, becoming the youngest sergeant major in the Austro-Hungarian Army of that time. After being seriously wounded and captured by the Imperial Russians during World War I, he was sent to a work camp in the Ural Mountains. He participated in some events of the Russian Revolution in 1917 and subsequent Civil War.

Upon his return to the Balkans in 1918, Broz entered the newly established Kingdom of Yugoslavia, where he joined the Communist Party of Yugoslavia (KPJ). He later was elected as General Secretary (later Chairman of the Presidium) of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia (1939–1980). During World War II, after the Nazi invasion of the area, he led the Yugoslav guerrilla movement, the Partisans (1941–1945).

After the war, he was selected as Prime Minister (1944–1963), and President (later President for Life) (1953–1980) of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY). From 1943 to his death in 1980, Tito held the rank of Marshal of Yugoslavia, serving as the supreme commander of the Yugoslav military, the Yugoslav People's Army (JNA). With a highly favourable reputation abroad in both Cold War blocs, he received some 98 foreign decorations, including the Legion of Honour and the Order of the Bath.

Tito was the chief architect of the second Yugoslavia, a socialist federation that lasted from November 1943 until April 1992. Despite being one of the founders of Cominform, he became the first Cominform member to defy Soviet hegemony in 1948. He was the only leader in Joseph Stalin's time to leave Cominform and begin with his country's own socialist program, which contained elements of market socialism. Economists active in the former Yugoslavia, including Czech-born Jaroslav Vanek and Yugoslav-born Branko Horvat, promoted a model of market socialism that was dubbed the Illyrian model. Firms were socially owned by their employees and structured on workers' self-management; they competed in open and free markets.

Tito built a very powerful cult of personality around himself, which was maintained by the League of Communists of Yugoslavia after his death.

Tito managed to keep ethnic tensions under control by delegating as much power as possible to each republic. The 1974 Yugoslav Constitution defined SFR Yugoslavia as a "federal republic of equal nations and nationalities, freely united on the principle of brotherhood and unity in achieving specific and common interest." Each republic was also given the right to self-determination and secession if done through legal channels. Lastly, Kosovo and Vojvodina, the two constituent provinces of Serbia, received substantially increased autonomy, including de facto veto power in the Serbian parliament.

Ten years after his death, Communism collapsed in Eastern Europe, and Yugoslavia descended into civil war.

Stamps from Yugoslavia depicting Tito

Yugoslavia 1962 Tito Imperf Sheet


Yugoslavia 1967  Marshal Tito Set


Yugoslavia Marshall Tito - Airmail


Yugoslavia Tito Birthday complete Set


Saturday, January 23, 2021

January 23rd in stamps Blaise Pascal, Andrija Mohorovičić, Django Reinhardt, Edvard Munch

Here are some events that happened on January 23rd. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1656 – Blaise Pascal publishes the first of his Lettres provinciales.

Blaise Pascal (19 June 1623 – 19 August 1662) was a French mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer and Catholic theologian. He was a child prodigy who was educated by his father, a tax collector in Rouen. Pascal's earliest work was in the natural and applied sciences, where he made important contributions to the study of fluids, and clarified the concepts of pressure and vacuum by generalising the work of Evangelista Torricelli. Pascal also wrote in defence of the scientific method.

In 1642, while still a teenager, he started some pioneering work on calculating machines. After three years of effort and 50 prototypes, he built 20 finished machines (called Pascal's calculators and later Pascalines) over the following 10 years, establishing him as one of the first two inventors of the mechanical calculator.

Pascal was an important mathematician, helping create two major new areas of research: he wrote a significant treatise on the subject of projective geometry at the age of 16, and later corresponded with Pierre de Fermat on probability theory, strongly influencing the development of modern economics and social science. Following Galileo Galilei and Torricelli, in 1647, he rebutted Aristotle's followers who insisted that nature abhors a vacuum. Pascal's results caused many disputes before being accepted.

In 1646, he and his sister Jacqueline identified with the religious movement within Catholicism known by its detractors as Jansenism. Following a religious experience in late 1654, he began writing influential works on philosophy and theology. His two most famous works date from this period: the Lettres provinciales and the Pensées, the former set in the conflict between Jansenists and Jesuits. In that year, he also wrote an important treatise on the arithmetical triangle. Between 1658 and 1659, he wrote on the cycloid and its use in calculating the volume of solids.

Throughout his life, Pascal was in frail health, especially after the age of 18; he died just two months after his 39th birthday. 

Stamps from France and Monaco depicting Blaise Pascal

Blaise Pascal France 1944


Blaise Pascal France 1962


Blaise Pascal Monaco


1857 Born: Andrija Mohorovičić, Croatian meteorologist and seismologist (d. 1936)

Andrija Mohorovičić (23 January 1857 – 18 December 1936) was a Croatian meteorologist and seismologist. He is best known for the eponymous Mohorovičić discontinuity and is considered as one of the founders of modern seismology.

On 8 October 1909 there was an earthquake with its epicentre in the Pokuplje region, 39 km southeast of Zagreb. A number of seismographs had been installed beforehand and these provided invaluable data, upon which he made new discoveries. He concluded that when seismic waves strike the boundary between different types of material, they are reflected and refracted, just as light is when striking a prism, and that when earthquakes occur, two waves—longitudinal and transverse—propagate through the soil with different velocities. By analyzing data from more observation posts, Mohorovičić concluded that the Earth has several layers above a core. He was the first to establish, based on the evidence from seismic waves, the discontinuity that separates the Earth's crust from its mantle. This is now called the Mohorovičić discontinuity or (because of the complexity of that name) Moho. According to Mohorovičić, a layered structure would explain the observation of depths where seismic waves change speed and the difference in chemical composition between rocks from the crust and those from the mantle. From the data, he estimated the thickness of the upper layer (crust) to be 54 km. We know today that the crust is 5–9 km below the ocean floor and 25–60 km below the continents, which are carried on tectonic plates. Subsequent study of the Earth's interior confirmed the existence of the discontinuity under all continents and oceans.

Mohorovičić assumed that the velocity of seismic waves increases with the depth. The function he proposed to calculate the velocity of seismic waves is called the Mohorovičić law. He developed a method for determining earthquake epicenters and constructed curves giving the travel times of seismic waves over distances of up to 10,000 miles from the source. He also proposed the construction of a new type of seismograph for recording the ground horizontal movement, but due to lack of funds the project was never realized.

As early as 1909 Mohorovičić started giving lectures that both architects and building contractors should follow, ahead of his time setting some of the basic principles of earthquake-resistant design. Mohorovičić's theories were visionary and were only truly understood many years later from detailed observations of the effects of earthquakes on buildings, deep focus earthquakes, locating earthquake epicenters, Earth models, seismographs, harnessing the energy of the wind, hail defence and other related elements of the geological body of knowledge known as geoscience.

Yugoslavian stamp depicting Mohorovičić

Andrija_Mohorovičić_1963_Yugoslavia_stamp


1910 Born: Django Reinhardt, Belgian guitarist and composer (d. 1953)

Jean Reinhardt (23 January 1910 – 16 May 1953), known to all by his Romani nickname Django, was a Belgian-born Romani-French jazz guitarist and composer. He was the first major jazz talent to emerge from Europe and remains the most significant.

With violinist Stéphane Grappelli, Reinhardt formed the Paris-based Quintette du Hot Club de France in 1934. The group was among the first to play jazz that featured the guitar as a lead instrument. Reinhardt recorded in France with many visiting American musicians, including Coleman Hawkins and Benny Carter, and briefly toured the United States with Duke Ellington's orchestra in 1946. He died suddenly of a stroke at the age of 43.

Reinhardt's most popular compositions have become standards within gypsy jazz, including "Minor Swing", "Daphne", "Belleville", "Djangology", "Swing '42", and "Nuages". Jazz guitarist Frank Vignola claims that nearly every major popular-music guitarist in the world has been influenced by Reinhardt. Over the last few decades, annual Django festivals have been held throughout Europe and the U.S., and a biography has been written about his life. In February 2017, the Berlin International Film Festival held the world premiere of the French film Django.

Stamps from Franc and Belgium depicting Django Reinhardt

France 1993 Django Reinhardt

Belgium Music, Jazz, Guitarist Django Reinhardt



1944 Died: Edvard Munch, Norwegian painter and illustrator (b. 1863)

Edvard Munch (12 December 1863 – 23 January 1944) was a Norwegian painter. His best known work, The Scream, has become one of the most iconic images of world art.

His childhood was overshadowed by illness, bereavement and the dread of inheriting a mental condition that ran in the family. Studying at the Royal School of Art and Design in Kristiania (today's Oslo), Munch began to live a bohemian life under the influence of nihilist Hans Jæger, who urged him to paint his own emotional and psychological state ('soul painting'). From this emerged his distinctive style.

Travel brought new influences and outlets. In Paris, he learned much from Paul Gauguin, Vincent van Gogh and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, especially their use of colour. In Berlin, he met Swedish dramatist August Strindberg, whom he painted, as he embarked on his major canon The Frieze of Life, depicting a series of deeply-felt themes such as love, anxiety, jealousy and betrayal, steeped in atmosphere.

The Scream was conceived in Kristiania. According to Munch, he was out walking at sunset, when he 'heard the enormous, infinite scream of nature'. The painting's agonised face is widely identified with the angst of the modern person. Between 1893 and 1910, he made two painted versions and two in pastels, as well as a number of prints. One of the pastels would eventually command the fourth highest nominal price paid for a painting at auction.

As his fame and wealth grew, his emotional state remained insecure. He briefly considered marriage, but could not commit himself. A breakdown in 1908 forced him to give up heavy drinking, and he was cheered by his increasing acceptance by the people of Kristiania and exposure in the city's museums. His later years were spent working in peace and privacy. Although his works were banned in Nazi Germany, most of them survived World War II, securing him a legacy.


Norwegian stamps depicting Edvard Munch's workd

Norway 1963, Paintings by Edvard Munch set

Norway 1963, Paintings by Edvard Munch set


Thursday, December 31, 2020

December 31st in stamps Henri Matisse, Benz patent on first reliable two-stroke gas engine, Simon Wiesenthal

Here are some events that happened on December 31st. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1869 Born: Henri Matisse, French painter and sculptor (d. 1954)

Henri Émile Benoît Matisse (31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, known for both his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship. He was a draughtsman, printmaker, and sculptor, but is known primarily as a painter. Matisse is commonly regarded, along with Pablo Picasso, as one of the artists who best helped to define the revolutionary developments in the visual arts throughout the opening decades of the twentieth century, responsible for significant developments in painting and sculpture.

The intense colorism of the works he painted between 1900 and 1905 brought him notoriety as one of the Fauves (wild beasts). Many of his finest works were created in the decade or so after 1906, when he developed a rigorous style that emphasized flattened forms and decorative pattern. In 1917, he relocated to a suburb of Nice on the French Riviera, and the more relaxed style of his work during the 1920s gained him critical acclaim as an upholder of the classical tradition in French painting. After 1930, he adopted a bolder simplification of form. When ill health in his final years prevented him from painting, he created an important body of work in the medium of cut paper collage.

His mastery of the expressive language of colour and drawing, displayed in a body of work spanning over a half-century, won him recognition as a leading figure in modern art

Some stamps depicting Matisse and or his works

France 1961 Modern Art - "Blue Nudes" by Henri Matisse


Yugoslavia 1984- Paintings in Yugoslav Museum - 'At the Window' by H. Matisse

150th Anniversary of the Birth of Henri Matisse


Monaco 1980 Henri Matisse


1878 – Karl Benz, working in Mannheim, Germany, filed for a patent on his first reliable two-stroke gas engine, and he was granted the patent in 1879.

Karl Friedrich Benz (25 November 1844 – 4 April 1929) was a German engine designer and automobile engineer.
The Benz Patent-Motorwagen ("patent motorcar"), built in 1885, is widely regarded as the world's first production automobile, that is, a vehicle designed to be propelled by an internal combustion engine. The original cost of the vehicle in 1885 was 600 imperial German marks, approximately 150 US dollars (equivalent to $4,183 in 2018). The vehicle was awarded the German patent number 37435, for which Karl Benz applied on 29 January 1886. Following official procedures, the date of the application became the patent date for the invention once the patent was granted, which occurred in November of that year.

Here are some stamps depicting Benz or his car from Germany and Hungary

Benz car Hungary


Benz car Germany


Karl Friedrich Benz German Reich


1908 Born: Simon Wiesenthal, Ukrainian-Austrian Nazi hunter and author (d. 2005)

Simon Wiesenthal (31 December 1908 – 20 September 2005) was a Jewish Austrian Holocaust survivor, Nazi hunter, and writer. He studied architecture and was living in Lwów at the outbreak of World War II. He survived the Janowska concentration camp (late 1941 to September 1944), the Kraków-Płaszów concentration camp (September to October 1944), the Gross-Rosen concentration camp, a death march to Chemnitz, Buchenwald, and the Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp (February to 5 May 1945).

After the war, Wiesenthal dedicated his life to tracking down and gathering information on fugitive Nazi war criminals so that they could be brought to trial. In 1947, he co-founded the Jewish Historical Documentation Centre in Linz, Austria, where he and others gathered information for future war crime trials and aided refugees in their search for lost relatives. He opened the Documentation Centre of the Association of Jewish Victims of the Nazi Regime in Vienna in 1961 and continued to try to locate missing Nazi war criminals. He played a small role in locating Adolf Eichmann, who was captured in Buenos Aires in 1960, and worked closely with the Austrian justice ministry to prepare a dossier on Franz Stangl, who was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1971.

In the 1970s and 1980s, Wiesenthal was involved in two high-profile events involving Austrian politicians. Shortly after Bruno Kreisky was inaugurated as Austrian chancellor in April 1970, Wiesenthal pointed out to the press that four of his new cabinet appointees had been members of the Nazi Party. Kreisky, angry, called Wiesenthal a "Jewish fascist", likened his organisation to the Mafia, and accused him of collaborating with the Nazis. Wiesenthal successfully sued for libel, the suit ending in 1989. In 1986, Wiesenthal was involved in the case of Kurt Waldheim, whose service in the Wehrmacht and probable knowledge of the Holocaust were revealed in the lead-up to the 1986 Austrian presidential elections. Wiesenthal, embarrassed that he had previously cleared Waldheim of any wrongdoing, suffered much negative publicity as a result of this event.

With a reputation as a storyteller, Wiesenthal was the author of several memoirs containing tales that are only loosely based on actual events. In particular, he exaggerated his role in the capture of Eichmann in 1960. Wiesenthal died in his sleep at age 96 in Vienna on 20 September 2005 and was buried in the city of Herzliya in Israel. The Simon Wiesenthal Center, located in Los Angeles, is named in his honor.

Austrian and Israeli joint issue depicting Simon Wiesenthal

Austria 2010 Simon Wiesenthal Miniature Sheet of Four Stamps


Israel 2010 Simon Wiesenthal Miniature Sheet of Four Stamps