HISTORY OF BASTILLE DAY
Each year on July 14, Bastille Day is celebrated to commemorate the Storming of the Bastille in Paris on this date in 1789, an important date in the French Revolution.
Also known as French National Day, it features feasting, fireworks, public dancing, and an address by the French President.
However, the center of this celebration is the largest and oldest European military parade along the Avenue of the Champs-Élysées. This wide boulevard runs through Paris and is called la plus belle avenue du monde. Lined by high-end shops and eateries, as well as the Arch of Triumph in the middle, it is undoubtedly the most beautiful avenue in the world I’ve walked along.
Bastille Day is celebrated across the globe wherever French ex-patriots, people of French ancestry, and Francophiles live.
HISTORY OF JOHN CALVIN
On July 10, 1509, in Noyon, France, Jean Cauvin was born. We know him by his Latinized name John Calvin.
Of all the leaders of the Protestant Reformation, none were more significant in forming biblical theology or ecclesiastic thought than this one man. Calvin’s teaching and tradition penetrated more of the world than any other Protestant tradition.
He would most influence the worldview of Western Europe, the UK, and the Americas up until the 20th century. His organization of the church government in Geneva would influence the church polity of Presbyterianism. His theology would influence the Congregational (Puritan) and German and Dutch Reformed Churches. Though they did not fellowship with Calvinistic churches, some Baptists and Unitarians often contained aspects of his theology.
HISTORY OF THE UNIQUE AMERICAN EXPERIMENT: A DEMOCRACY OR A REPUBLIC?
Since 1776, our 246-year experiment with non-monarchical government is rather unique in history. The Treaty of Paris in 1783 officially ended the War of the American Revolution against the colonial power that had previously ruled us, Great Britain. King George III of Great Britain had the most powerful army and navy in the world, but the American Colonies threw off British control through several battles, starting in 1775.
But was the country’s government going to be a democracy or a republic?
HISTORY OF INDEPENDENCE DAY
Independence Day, or the Fourth of July, celebrates the adoption by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, of the Declaration of Independence, proclaiming the severance of the allegiance of the American colonies to Great Britain. It is the most significant secular holiday in the United States, observed in all the states, territories, and dependencies.
Although it is assumed that the Continental Congress unanimously signed the document on the 4th of July, in fact, not all delegates were present, and there were no signers at all, contrary to the theatrical musical 1776.
Here is what actually happened. (more…)
HISTORY OF JAMES MADISON
Among the Founding Fathers, James Madison has justly been called “the Father of the Constitution,” and one might think that the Constitution became active on July 5, 1776, but this is not how it happened.
The American Constitution didn’t go into effect until almost a decade and a half after the Declaration of Independence. How did this philosopher, diplomat, and Founding Father influence this?
We know this polymath as a writer, publisher, printer, merchant, scientist, moral philosopher, international diplomat, and inventor.
He invented the glass harmonica in music, but he also invented the Franklin stove and started the first lending library and fire brigade in Philadelphia.
He did experiments in electricity and developed the lightning rod. He was considered:
America’s best scientist, inventor, diplomat, writer, and business strategist, and he was also one of its most practical, though not most profound, political thinkers. — Isaacson, Walter. Benjamin Franklin: An American Life
Ben Franklin in America
Born on January 17, 1706 *, in Boston, he was one of the earliest and oldest of the American Founding Fathers. He served as a lobbyist to England, was first Ambassador to France, and has been called “The First American.”
HISTORY OF THE 4TH OF JULY: JOHN ADAMS
Before John Adams became the first Vice President of the United States under George Washington, second President of the United States, the first resident of the White House, and writer of the Massachusetts State Constitution he had a role during the Revolutionary War period as one of the creators of the Declaration of Independence.
John Adams and the Committee of Five
He was on the Committee of Five who wrote the Declaration of Independence. At the age of 40 he was more senior than the 33-year-old Thomas Jefferson, but realized that Jefferson was the more eloquent writer.
HISTORY OF THE 4th OF JULY: THOMAS JEFFERSON
“The Third President is the Muse of American life, the chief articulator of our national value system and our national self-identity. Jefferson was a man of almost unbelievable achievement: statesman, man of letters, architect, scientist, book collector, political strategist, and utopian visionary. But he is also a man of paradox: liberty-loving slaveholder, Indian-loving relocationist, publicly frugal and privately bankrupt, a constitutional conservative who bought the Louisiana Territory in 1803.”
HISTORY OF CANADA DAY
As the U.S. will soon celebrate its Independence Day, Canadians have a celebration of their own. Canada Day (Fête du Canada) marks the anniversary of July 1, 1867, when the three independent colonies of Canada, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick, were united into a single dominion.
The British North American Act, known today as the Constitution Act, officially confederated Canada on that date. While it was still a subject of the British Empire, Dominion Day, as it was originally called (or Le Jour de la Confederation in French) marked this new beginning. It was renamed to Canada Day in 1982.
Canada Day: Birthday of Canada?
Canada Day is called “the birthday of Canada” but differs from the U.S. holiday. It did not become separate from the British Empire until 1982, when it gained complete independence with the Constitution Act of 1982. And they didn’t have to fight a Revolutionary War.
Canada still enjoys its status in the British Commonwealth as a federal parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy, with the British Queen as head of state. So they get a Queen and live in the New World, something that the U.S. envies. We have created in her place a synthetic royalty: Hollywood movie stars.
HISTORY OF JULY
July was renamed for Julius Caesar, who was born that month. Before that, it was called Quintilis in Latin, meaning the fifth month in the ancient Roman calendar. But Marc Anthony changed the name to July after Caesar’s assassination. This was before January became the first month of the calendar year, either under ancient rulers Numa or under the Decemvirs about 450 BC (Roman historians differ). We currently use the more contemporary Gregorian calendar — recent, as in since AD 1582. It uses Anno Domini, meaning “in the year of our Lord,” counting from the birth of Jesus. As we’ve previously discussed, in this calendar curiously, Jesus was born 4 to 6 years BC or “Before Christ.”
Calendar and Julius
The Gregorian calendar was a reform of the Julian calendar, which was a reform of the previous Roman calendar.
Julius Caesar himself introduced the Julian Calendar in 46 BC, where he added 67 additional days by putting two intercalary months between November and December, He probably did this after returning from an African military campaign in late Quntilis (July), according to Cicero. This took care of some of the leap year problems.