1902 Encyclopedia > Today in History > Paracelsus revolutionises medicine, the Iroquois, Laing leaves Timbuktu, and more

Today in History - September 24
• Paracelsus Revolutionises Medicine
• The Fate of the Iroquois
• Explorer Laing Leaves Timbuktu

-- Compiled by James Finlayson-Bald

Paracelsus (image)

Paracelsus (1493-1541), Swiss Renaissance physician, botanist, alchemist, and astrologer. His support for research and experiment was to revolutionize medical methods.

On this date:

768--Pepin III, ruler of France and father of Charlemagne, died.

784--The Second Council of Nicea began, dealing with the use of images in Catholic churches.

867--Michael III, "the Drunkard", East-Roman Emperor, killed. He grew up under the sway of his wicked uncle, Bardas, who induced him to confine the Regent, his mother Theodora, to a convent so that he, Bardas, could assume control. Michael was assassinated by Basil the Macedonian, a former groom.

1066--King Harold Hardrada and his Vikings entered York, peacefully, trying to drum up support for his claim to be King of the English.

1332--Robert Baliol was crowned King of Scotland, but could only reign with aid from England, whose puppet he was. He struggled on but was eventually compelled to resign the throne to Edward III.

1541--Paracelsus died. A Swiss physician, he travelled widely in Europe, lecturing and practising medicine, with a little alchemy on the side to settle the bills. He encouraged support for research and experiment and, in an empirical fashion, revolutionised medical methods.

1657--The first autopsy and coroner's court jury verdict was recorded in Maryland.

1664--The first convention between the Iroquois Indians and the British was held at Albany. New York. The Iroquois were actually a confederation of Mohawks, Oneidas, Onondagas, Senecas and Cayugas and the most powerful Indian federation on the continent. They supported the British in the War of Independence which brought them near to ruin in manpower and loss of territory.

1780--Benedict Arnold escaped to the British after the arrest of Major Andre. The American Arnold was commander of West Point which he proposed to surrender to the British. He commanded British troops for the remainder of the war and then retired to Britain, where he died in 1801.

1820--The treaty of Ladakh opened Central Asia to British trade and meddling.

1826--Alexander Gordon Laing, Scottish explorer, left Timbuktu. In his caravan was the sheik who is alleged to have murdered him (on Sept 25). Nothing more was ever heard of him although it was said that his papers turned up in Tripoli in 1828. He was the first white man to reach Timbuktu.

-- Horace Walpole, novelist (1717-1797)
-- F.Scott Fitzgerald, novelist (1896-1940)

"But the age of chivalry is gone; that of sophisters, economists and calculators has succeeded."
— Edmund Burke.

The above article was written by James Finlayson-Bald.
Edited and illustrations added by David Paul Wagner.

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