History is a dynamic intersection of truths, biases, and expectations, not just what happened in the past. The variety and complexity inherent in the study of history are demonstrated by a look at two very different historians, the Roman Tacitus, and the Byzantine Procopius.At least three different methods of accessing history are involvedin history: it can berecalled or retrieved or even invented. Everyone is flawed in some way. For example, the complete and unvarnished truth about history is exposed by no historian or historical source, so memory is a fallible guide. Often, without context, no evidence brought to light by archaeology or historical research is complete, and the value of recovered historical data is often difficult to assess. Also, several alleged ‘histories’ can be shown to have been invented; at the same time, though, these fabrications also tell us a lot about the values and dreams of a culture. All in all, the best tales are the best tales.
Let’s discuss a few major Historical events in Today’s History.
1066: William the Conqueror invades England
950 years ago, the last successful invasion of these islands took place. William, Duke of Normandy, later to be referred to as William the Conqueror, landed at Pevensey Bay on this day in the year 1066, in what we now know as East Sussex. He is said to have proclaimed upon landing ‘I have taken England with both my hands.’
The cousin of Edward the Confessor, who had ruled England since 1042, was William. When Edward died without a child, Harold was proclaimed king. But William felt he had a stronger claim to the throne, hence his landing on the beach at Pevensey on that autumn day, with 7,000 soldiers.
You know the rest. William and his men marched to Hastings, where on 14 October they met with Harold and his army.Harold was dead by the end of the day-an arrow through his eye, it is said.
William marched to London shortly afterward and was crowned the first Norman king of England at Westminster Abbey.
Twenty years later, when his uncle, William II, came to the throne, William I ruled until his death.
In the culture, Royal London has its origins. Established in the year 1861, it started with the goal of helping people escape the stigma of the grave of a pauper.
In 1908, it became a mutual life insurance company before becoming the largest mutual life and Pension Company in the UK.
Self-reliance, culture, and having members at the center of all decisions are the guiding values.
Today in Sports History
1941: Williams hits .406
Entering the final day of the regular season, the batting average of Ted William was .3995. Statistically, when Bill Terry of the New York Giants did it in 1930, Williams was told that his batting average would be rounded up to .400, making him the first man to bat that high. Williams was asked by Red Sox manager Joe Cronin if he wanted to sit out and retain his average; Williams didn’t want to hit the goal by default and opted to play.
With a double-header against the Philadelphia Athletics, the Sox concluded the season.As Williams walked to the plate for the first time, Frankie Hayes, the catcher of A, told him ‘I wish you all the luck in the world, Ted, but Mr. Mack told us that if we gave up on you, he will run us all out of baseball’. You will have to earn it.
He won it. Williams went a combined 6 for 8 with a double and a home run, featuring in both parts of the double-header.
Williams increased his batting average to a lofty .406 by not sitting out and won universal praise for his resolve. Williams is also the last man ever to bat .400 to date, rendering his feat even more remarkable.
In 1941, Williams did not earn the MVP, as Joe Dimaggio had won the writers’ hearts with his 56-game hitting streak. Williams’ 1941 effort is among the best not to earn the MVP of all time-along with his astronomical average, Williams led the league in walks, runs, home runs, percentage of on-base, and percentage of slugging. He also registered ten fewer strikeouts (27) compared to home runs (17).
1928: Alexander Fleming Discovers Penicillin
Alexander Fleming discovers penicillin by mistake while working at his laboratory at St Mary’s Hospital, London, when he found that many of his culture dishes were infected with a fungus that had a beneficial anti-bacterial effect on multiple species providing the basic block for the start of modern antibiotics. Most agree that one of the most important discoveries of the last century was the discovery of Penicillin.