1393 – The Bal des Ardents masquerade ball takes place in Paris. Charles VI was in attendance with several members of the nobility. However the evening would end in tragedy when one of the dancer’s costume caught fire and spread, killing four people in total.
1521 – The Diet of Worms convenes in Germany, with Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor presiding over the council. Martin Luther was summoned, and the point of the meeting was to have him either reaffirm or publicly renounce his Ninety-Five theses.
1724 – Peter the Great of Russia founds the Russian Academy of Sciences, which would operate under that name until the 1917 Revolution.
1312 – Queen Joan II of Navarre is born. She was the daughter of Louis X and I of France and Navarre. She became Queen of Navarre because unlike France, they didn’t observe Salic law, barring women from the crown. She was given Navarre and other lands in France, in exchange for renouncing her claim to the throne. However, her descendants would eventually accede to the throne.
1457 – The future Henry VII of England is born in Wales, to a thirteen year old Lady Margaret Beaufort Countess of Richmond, and three months after the death of his father, the Earl of Richmond, Edmund Tudor. His claim to the throne was weak, and through his mother’s line, which was barred from the succession. However, after the War of the Roses, he was a leading Lancastrian candidate, leading to his exile in France for many years. He was able to claim the throne after his defeat of Richard III during the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485.
814 – Charlemagne, Holy Roman Emperor died at age 71 in modern day Germany. He had consolidated most of the European continent under the Empire, and is the first of what is considered to be the Holy Roman Emperors. Both French and German monarchies would claim descendancy from him, and he is one of the best known rulers in all of Europe.
1271 – Isabella of Aragon, Queen consort of France died at age 24 after a fall from a horse while accompanying her husband, Phillip III of France on the Eighth Crusade. She had been married to Phillip since 1262, and had given him four sons already. However she was pregnant when she fell, and would miscarry the baby before he death.
1547 – A 55 year old Henry VIII of England dies of probable complications from his severe obesity. He was 6’2 but weighed well over 300 pounds, and had a 54 inch waist. He is best known for bringing England charging into the Reformation, with it in full swing in England by his death, and also for his six wives. All three of his living children would succeed to the throne, the first being his youngest, Edward VI, son of wife 3, Jane Seymour. His daughter, Mary I by Catherine of Aragon, would be next after Edward’s premature death, followed by the the penultimate Tudor monarch, Elizabeth I, daughter of wife number 2, Anne Boleyn.
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