On This Day – The Old Lady of Threadneedle Street

23 May

Danish Royal Christening


878 The Saxon King Alfred defeated the Danes at Edington, Wiltshire. As part of the peace agreement, the Danish King, Guthrum, accepted Christianity and was baptized as a Christian.

Dermot’s Kingdom

1169 ‘The First Conquerors’ landed in Ireland. They were Normans from Wales enlisted by Dermot MacMurrough to recover his kingdom of Leinster.

Protector of the Faith

1533 To the annoyance of the Pope, the English Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Cranmer declared Henry VIII’s marriage to Catherine of Aragon to be void and his marriage to Anne Boleyn, to be legal. The result was a break with the church in Rome despite Henry’s title as ‘Protector of the Faith’.

I Kidd You Not

1701 At London’s Execution Dock, British privateer Captain Kidd was hanged for piracy and murder. Commissioned by the British crown in 1695 to apprehend pirates in the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean, Kidd apparently turned to piracy himself in 1697.

Happy Birthday, Sir Charles

1795 Sir Charles Barry, the English architect who designed the Houses of Parliament, was born.

The Old Lady of Threadneedle Street

Gillray cartoon

1797 A cartoon by Gilray was published which gave the Bank of England its nickname, ‘The Old Lady of Threadneedle Street.’

Happy Birthday, Our Joan

1933 Joan Collins, English actress was born.

A Way Out

1945 World War II: Heinrich Himmler, the head of the SS, committed suicide by means of a potassium cyanide capsule while in Allied custody, awaiting trial with other German leaders as a war criminal at Nuremberg.

The Lights of Calder Hall

1956 The first large-scale nuclear power station was opened at Calder Hall, Cumbria. It was decommissioned after producing electricity for almost 50 years.

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