Famous & Infamous Births & Deaths 21st November

French philosopher Francçois-Marie Arouet who also went by the pen name Voltaire went by the nickname ‘Zozo’ from 1694. Founder of boat business bearing his name – Samuel Cunard was a little boy in 1787. Richest (and stingiest) woman in America, (and no it’s not Leona Helmsley) but Henrietta Howland ‘Hettie’ Green who looked almost as happy at birth in 1834 as she did throughout life. Giacomo Paolo Giovanni Battista della Chlesa or Pope Benedict XV received his orders in 1854. Norwegian of the day, with the moustache (and one of 16 children), Sigbjørn Obstfelder was a child of few words from 1866. Another famous Belgian, artist René François Ghislain Magritte found birth a surreal experience back in 1898. National treasure who penned various dark tales, Beryl Margaret Bainbridge didn’t give her parents a quiet life from 1932. Actress Goldie Jeanne Hawn had her ‘Good Morning, World’ moment in 1945. Daughter of Francis Ethel Gumm, (Judy Garland) and half sister to Liza Minnelli, Lorna Luft was uncaged in 1952. Host of Saturday night Radio 2 show and daughter of gap toothed golf playing comedian Jimmy, Liza Tarbuck has been bonkers since 1964. Odd Icelandic singer Björk Guðmundsdóttir’s (hence being known by her first name), mum probably wondered why it’s oh so quiet from 1965. Russian born chess Grandmaster Evgeny Bareev got his positioning just right in 1966. Guitarist with Britpop band Blur, Steven Alexander ‘Alex’ James started shoegazing in 1968.

It’s another slow day for deaths, but we begin in 496 as Pope Gelasius I stopped taking confessions. Composer Henry Purcell let out his last note in 1695. Sort of dead Norwegian of the day, Danish artist Peder Severin (P.S.) Krøyer didn’t leave a post-script in 1909. Emperor of Austria, King of Hungary and Croatia along with being King of Bohemia, Franz Joseph I of Austria found himself in a catacomb under the streets of Vienna from 1916. Olympic gold medal winning divot maker at the 1904 St. Louis Games, Edward Cummings was knocked down in 1926. Prime Minister of the Union of South Africa, James Barry Munnik Hertzog/J.B.M. Hertzog has been remembered since 1942 as a jam filled tartlet named ‘Hertzoggie’. Real life ‘Bird Man of Alcatraz’, Robert Franklin Stroud fell off his perch in 1963. Camp writer and raconteur Dennis Charles Pratt or Quentin Crisp found himself somewhat crisp in 1999. Finally, Art Ginsberg or ‘Mr Food’, began an enforced diet in 2012.


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