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Today in 1307, many members of the Knights Templar order were arrested simultaneously under orders of King Phillip IV, who was ironically, deeply in debt to them. The members, including the Gran Master Jacques de Molay were tortured into confessions heresy, idolatry, homosexuality, and scores of other offenses. They were subsequently burned at the stake. Ironically, today is the birthday of de Molay, who was born in 1244.
In 1911 today, Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught and Strathern was sworn in as Governor General of Canada by his nephew, King George V. Prince Arthur was the only member of the royal family to serve in this office.
Our first birthday today belongs to Eleanor of England, Queen of Castile and Toledo in 1162. Called Lenora in Spain, she was the second daughter and sixth child of Henry II of England and Eleanor of Aquitaine.
In 1453 today, we see the birth of Edward of Westminster in London. Edward was the only son of Henry VI of England and Margaret of Anjou. Edwards inheritance to the throne was in question during the War of the Roses and he would perish in the Battle of Tewksbury defending it.
Next in 1499, we see the birth of Claude of France, future Queen as the wife of Francis I. She was the eldest daughter of Louis XII of France and Anne, Duchess of Brittany. Claude became Duchess of Brittany in her own right, but could only be Queen through marriage because of France’s Salic law.
Today in 1613, we see the birth of Luisa of Guzman, Queen of Portugal. Luisa was known as a wise diplomat and would have 2 of her sons inherit the crown of Portugal and her daughter be Queen of England.
Lastly in 1933 today, the future Queen Narriman of Egypt was born. She was not a royal but was chosen to help bolster the popularity of the Egpytian monarchy. She would be their last Queen.
Our first death of note today, comes in 54 CE where we see Claudius, Roman Emperor, perish by possible poisoning. It’s still contended who did the poisoning, we do know that his successor would go on to be infamous as it was his grand-nephew, Nero.
Next in 1706, we mark the passing of Iyasu I of Ethiopia. He had fallen ill while traveling and was assassinated by agents of his son and successor, Tekle Haymanot.
Lastly in 1825 today, we have the passing of Bavarian king Maximilian I Joseph. Maximilian was a great patron of the arts, as a fellow of the British Royal Society for Improving Knowledge, founded the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich, and ordered the construction of the National Theatre in Munich.
Have a great day!!