Today is National Liqueur Day

Today is National Liqueur Day

A liqueur is a strong alcoholic beverage that has been sweetened with herbs, fruits, nuts, cream, or spices. Liqueurs are traditionally served as after-dinner drinks or mixed with coffee. The word “liqueur” comes from the Latin word “liquifacere,” which means “to dissolve or melt.” As early as 400 BC, the Egyptians and Greeks distilled wine to produce fortified spirits. They sweetened this concoction with cinnamon and honey—a combination that we still use today to create mead. In the thirteenth century, European monks and alchemists perfected the distillation process used to create liqueur. The liquid was primarily used for medicinal purposes.


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Today in History: Olympic Games in Mexico open in 1968

Today in History: Olympic Games in Mexico open in 1968

49 years ago today, the first Olympic Games in Latin America were opened In Mexico City. The Games were overshadowed by political events such as the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia and civil unrest in the host country. More than 5,000 athletes from over 100 nations participated. It marked the first time that West- and East Germany would send separate teams to the Olympics (the team from the GDR was forced to depart early as the IOC forbade it from competing under the name DDR). During the medal ceremony for the 200-meter dash, American medal winners Tommie Smith and John Carlos demonstrated their sympathy for the “Black Panther” movement by raising a black-gloved fist during the American national anthem. American Bob Beamon created a sensation with his world record long jump of 8.90 meters (29 ft. 2 1/2 in.), beating the existing record by 55 cm (21 3/4 in.).

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Mona Lisa shown at Castle Clos Lucé in 1517

Mona Lisa shown at Castle Clos Lucé in 1517

500 years ago today, Leonardo da Vinci allegedly presented his Mona Lisa to King Francis I of France. Da Vinci was invited to work at King’s castle in 1516 and it is believed that he took the Mona Lisa (and several other works) with him where he continued to make refinements to his masterpiece before presenting it to the King. The Mona Lisa was acquired by King Francis at the time and is now property of the French Republic. It is likely the most visited, most written and talked about, and possibly even the most valuable painting in the world. It has been on permanent display at the Louvre in Paris since 1797.

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Today is Columbus Day

Today is Columbus Day

In 1492, Christopher Columbus set sail on a voyage to find a shorter trade route to Asia. He traveled west and accidentally landed in the Americas, spawning the era of European exploration in the New World. The first celebration of his discovery did not take place until October 12, 1792—exactly 300 years after his landing. In 1937, President Franklin Roosevelt proclaimed Columbus Day a national holiday, observed each year on the second Monday of October. Happy Columbus Day!

Today in History: Air France formed in 1933

Today in History: Air France formed in 1933

The French airline was formed 84 years ago today and this is always a great reason to show another example of Air France’s wonderful poster art, incl. this very first official Air France poster by Jules Isnard Drasny from 1933.
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Today in History: Yosemite Park was established in 1890

Today in History: Yosemite Park was established in 1890

127 years ago today, Yosemite National Park was established as a national park. The 1,500 square miles of park territory are home to such natural wonders as Yosemite Falls; rock formations Half Dome and El Capitain, the largest granite monolith in the United States; and the giant sequoia trees. In 1889, John Muir and his fellow environmentalists started campaigning for congressional action to protect the large wilderness area surrounding Yosemite Valley and on October 1, 1890, President Benjamin Harrison signed the legislation that created the third national park in the United States.

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