Tag Archives: Brinsley Le Poer Trench

Almanac – May 18

1048 – Omar Khayyám born.  Persian polymath, philosopher, mathematician, astronomer and poet. He also wrote treatises on mechanics, geography, mineralogy, music, and Islamic theology.

Outside Iran and Persian speaking countries, Khayyám has had an impact on literature and societies through the translation of his works and popularization by other scholars.

The greatest such impact was in English-speaking countries; the English scholar Thomas Hyde (1636–1703) was the first non-Persian to study him.

The most influential of all was Edward FitzGerald (1809–83), who made Khayyám the most famous poet of the East in the West through his celebrated translation and adaptations of Khayyám’s rather small number of quatrains (Persian: رباعیات‎ rubāʿiyāt) in the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam.

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1911 – Big Joe Turner born. American “blues shouter” (a blues-music singer capable of singing unamplified with a band) .

According to the songwriter Doc Pomus, “Rock and roll would have never happened without him.”

Although he had his greatest fame during the 1950s with his rock and roll recordings, particularly “Shake, Rattle and Roll”, Turner’s career as a performer endured from the 1920s into the 1980s.

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1913 – Charles Trenet born.  French singer and songwriter, most famous for his recordings from the late 1930s until the mid-1950s, though his career continued through the 1990s.

In an era in which it was exceptional for a singer to write their own material, Trenet wrote prolifically and declined to record any but his own songs.

While many of his songs mined relatively conventional topics such as love, Paris, and nostalgia for his younger days, what set Trenet’s songs apart were their personal, poetic, sometimes quite eccentric qualities, often infused with a warm wit. Some of his songs had unconventional subject matter, with whimsical imagery bordering on the surreal.

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1995 – Brinsley Le Poer Trench died. From 1956 to 1959 he edited the Flying Saucer Review and founded the International Unidentified Object Observer Corps.

In 1967, he founded Contact International and served as its first president. He also served as vice-president of the British UFO Research Association (BUFORA). He was an honorary life member of the now defunct Ancient Astronauts Society which supported the ideas put forward by Erich von Däniken in his 1968 book Chariots of the Gods?.

In 1975 he succeeded to the earldom of  Clancarty on the death of his half-brother, giving him a seat in the British House of Lords.

He used his new position to found a UFO Study Group at the  Lords, introducing Flying Saucer Review to its library and pushing for the declassification of UFO data.

Four years later he organised a celebrated debate in the House of Lords on UFOs which attracted many speeches on both sides of the question.

Trench also claimed to know a former U.S. test pilot who said he was one of six persons present at a meeting between President Eisenhower and a group of aliens, which allegedly took place at Edwards Air Force Base on April 4, 1954.

Clancarty reported that the test pilot told him “Five different alien craft landed at the base. Three were saucer-shaped and two were cigar shaped… the aliens looked something like humans, but not exactly.”

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1999 – Augustus Pablo died. Jamaican roots reggae and dub record producer, melodica player and keyboardist, active from the 1970s onwards.

He popularized the use of the melodica (an instrument at that time primarily used in Jamaica to teach music to schoolchildren) in reggae music, and was a committed Rastafarian.

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Almanac – September 18

St. Joseph of Cupertino’s Day
Patron saint of Astronauts

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1709 – Samuel Johnson born. English author who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer.

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1905 – Greta Garbo born.  Swedish film actress and an international star and icon during Hollywood’s silent and classic periods. Many of her films were sensational hits, and all but three of her twenty-four Hollywood films were profitable.

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1911 – Brinsley Le Poer Trench born. Trench – who was also 8th Earl of Clancarty – was a firm believer in flying saucers, and in particular, the Hollow Earth theory, ideas he discussed in his book Secret of the Ages: UFOs from Inside the Earth. He also claimed that he could trace his descent from 63,000 BC, when beings from other planets had landed on Earth in spaceships.
Most humans, he said, were descended from these aliens: “This accounts for all the different colour skins we’ve got here,” he said in 1981. A few of these early aliens did not come from space, he explained, but emerged through tunnels from a civilisation which “still existed beneath the Earth’s crust.” There were seven or eight of these tunnels altogether, one at the North Pole, another at the South Pole, and others in such places as Tibet. “I haven’t been down there myself,” he said, “but from what I gather [these beings] are very advanced.”

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1939 – The Nazi propaganda broadcaster known as Lord Haw-Haw began transmitting. It was the nickname of several announcers on the English-language propaganda radio programme Germany Calling, broadcast by Nazi German radio to audiences in Great Britain on the medium wave station Reichssender Hamburg and by shortwave to the United States, though it later came to be exclusively applied to   William Joyce, who was German radio’s most prominent English-language speaker.

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1964 – Sean O’Casey died.  Irish dramatist and memoirist. A committed socialist, he was the first Irish playwright of note to write about the Dublin working classes.

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1970 – Jimi Hendrix died.  American musician and singer-songwriter. Widely considered to be the greatest electric guitarist in music history and one of the most influential musicians of his era despite his mainstream exposure being limited to four years.

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2004 – Russ Meyer died. American  motion picture director, producer, screenwriter, cinematographer, editor, actor and photographer,  known primarily for writing and directing a series of successful low-budget sexploitation films that featured campy humor, sly satire and large-breasted women, including such notable films as Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (1965) and Vixen! (1968).

Faster Pusycat Kill ! Kill ! is one of my all-time favorite films.

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