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1633

Galileo in Rome to face the Inquisition

On this day in 1633, Italian philosopher, astronomer and mathematician Galileo Galilei arrives in Rome to face charges of heresy for advocating Copernican theory, which holds that the Earth revolves around the Sun. Galileo officially faced the Roman Inquisition in April of that same year and agreed to plead guilty in exchange for a lighter sentence. Put under house arrest indefinitely by Pope U... Read more >

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1945

Dresden devastated

On February 13, 1945, hundreds of British bombers launch a massive Allied air raid against the city of Dresden, Germany. Over a three-day period, 3,900 tons of explosives and incendiaries were dropped by 1,300 British and American aircraft, reducing much of the city to smoldering rubble and killing between 35,000 and 135,000 civilians. Some Allied officials were outraged--Germany was clearly on... Read more >

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1689

William and Mary proclaimed

Following Britain's bloodless Glorious Revolution, Mary, the daughter of the deposed king, and William of Orange, her husband, are proclaimed joint sovereigns of Great Britain under Britain's new Bill of Rights. William, a Dutch prince, married Mary, the daughter of the future King James II, in 1677. After James' succession to the English throne in 1685, the Protestant William kept in close con... Read more >

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1895

Downhill skier Hermann Maier crashes in Olympics

Austrian ski racer Hermann Maier” makes one of the most dramatic crashes in skiing history when he catapults 30 feet in the air, lands on his helmet and rams through two safety fences at an estimated 80 miles per hour on February 13, 1998. Amazingly, Maier suffered just minor injuries and walked away from the crash. Several days later, he won gold medals in the giant slalom and super-G events... Read more >