Nov 14: A Day of Devastation and Conflict

November 14 is a day marked by devastation and conflict from the fictional whale Moby Dick to the Somme, the Coventry Blitz, the crushing of the Hungarian Uprising and political warfare in Washington.

1851

Herman Melville’s classic Moby Dick is published.  . The novel was a commercial failure and out of print at the time of the author’s death in 1891, but has since been hailed as one of the greatest works of American fiction.   Call me Ishmael” is among world literature’s most famous opening sentences.

 

1916

End of the Battle of the Somme which was one of the bloodiest battles of all time with over 1 million killed.

1940

After 68 consecutive days of bombing London, the German Lufwaffe blitz the town of Coventry destroying 75 percent of its buildings including a 14th century cathedral.

 

POST SCRIPT: It is believed that the fire bombing of Dresden in 1945 was Churchill’s revenge for Coventry. Following the blitz, the Cathedral’s Provost etched the words “Father forgive” into the ruins of the sanctuary wall and above it erected a cross made out of three original nails that survived the bombing.  The Cross of Nails has become a sign of Christian hope and reconciliation and a Coventry Cross of Nails hangs today in Dresden’s cathedral.

1956

Hungarian uprising crushed by Soviet Union.

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