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Michael III Timeline

Michael III Timeline

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The True Story of Robert the Bruce, Scotland’s ‘Outlaw King’

Six weeks before he seized the Scottish crown in March 1306, Robert the Bruce murdered his closest political rival.

He’d arranged to meet longtime opponent John “the Red” Comyn at a priory in Dumfries in southern Scotland, ostensibly to discuss “certain business touching them both,” but quickly changed tactics, accused Comyn of treachery and struck him down. As Comyn lay bleeding at the foot of the shrine, Bruce retreated, giving the friars a chance to tend to the fallen man’s wounds. But he then learned his target was still alive and sent several men back to finish the bloody task. As Walter of Guisborough wrote around 1308, when Comyn “had confessed and was truly repentant, by the tyrant's order he was dragged out of the vestry and killed on the steps of the high altar.”

The murder—described by the English the following year as “outrageous sacrilege inhumanly committed against God and the holy Church”—placed Bruce on a collision course with Scotland’s imposing neighbor, England. But the motivations behind the act remain as mired in uncertainty as the legacy of the warrior king himself. Alternately painted as a patriot whose perseverance secured his nation’s independence and a more shadowy figure with dangerous ambitions and a tenuous sense of allegiance, Bruce remains one of Scottish history’s most controversial characters, and one of the few whose name is easily recognized by non-Scots.

Bruce addresses his troops at the 1314 Battle of Bannockburn in this 1909 drawing by Edmund Leighton (Wikimedia Commons)

Director David McKenzie’s upcoming Netflix biopic, The Outlaw King, represents one of the first major film adaptations of Bruce’s story. (The 1995 epic Braveheart finds a younger Bruce intersecting with Mel Gibson’s William Wallace but concludes long before Bruce becomes the Scots’ leader.) Starring Chris Pine as the titular character, Outlaw King picks up roughly where Braveheart left off, chronicling Wallace’s downfall, Bruce’s subsequent rise and the middle years of the First War of Scottish Independence.

Bruce’s transformation from the much derided “King Hob,” or King Nobody, to protector of Scotland happened slowly and is more nuanced than suggested by Outlaw King, which compresses the historical timeline and tends to skirt unsavory aspects of Bruce’s personality in favor of presenting a conflicted, even reluctant ruler.

Still, McKenzie tells the Hollywood Reporter, “He’s a complicated hero. He gets half of the way he wants to go by murdering someone in a church. He’s one of the one percent. He’s not an easy hero to go, ‘He’s our folk guy.’”

Given the drawn-out nature of the struggle for Scottish independence, the film’s condensed time frame—it focuses on Bruce’s life between 1304 and 1307—makes narrative sense. But whether this hinders Outlaw King’s ability to capture Bruce’s transformation, in the words of historian Fiona Watson—author of the newly released Traitor, Outlaw, King: The Making of Robert Bruce—from someone “incredibly inept” to someone “quite extraordinary” is another issue entirely.

Like many conflicts of the medieval era, the First War of Scottish Independence began with a succession crisis. After Alexander III, King of Scots, died suddenly in 1286, the throne passed to his granddaughter, three-year-old Margaret, Maid of Norway. Never officially crowned, she died unexpectedly four years later, triggering a battle for power between claimants John Balliol and Robert the Bruce, the grandfather of the better-known Robert. Trapped in a stalemate, the Scots asked England’s Edward I (played in Outlaw King by Stephen Dillane) to choose their nation’s next ruler. In 1292, he picked Balliol.

England’s intervention came with a heavy price: Edward forced the Scottish nobility to pledge fealty to him, eroding the country’s claim to sovereignty and treating Scotland much like a feudal territory. Incensed, the Scots formed a separate alliance with France in 1295 and continued their subversion of English authority with a 1296 attack on the city of Carlisle. Edward retaliated in brutal fashion. As 15th-century chronicler Walter Bower recounts, the king targeted the Scottish city of Berwick, sparing “no one, whatever the age or sex, and for two days streams of blood flowed from the bodies of the slain … so that mills could be turned round by the flow of their blood.”

Bruce’s transformation from the much derided “King Hob,” or King Nobody, to protector of Scotland happened slowly and is more nuanced than suggested by Outlaw King (Courtesy of Netflix)

During these early stages of the war, Bruce and his father Robert sided with the English. The younger Robert had recently served in the royal household, Michael Penman writes in Robert the Bruce: King of the Scots, and it’s possible he wanted to convince Edward that the Bruce clan had forgotten its ambitions of claiming the throne. Whatever his motivations, the 21-year-old Robert marched with the English against the country he would one day rule.

But in 1297, an increasingly disillusioned Bruce shifted his allegiance to Scottish rebel William Wallace. Forever cemented (erroneously) in popular imagination as a blue paint-covered kilt-wearer, Wallace is often portrayed as a more straightforward figure than his successor in the bid for Scottish independence. Michael Brown, a historian at Scotland’s University of St. Andrews, says that Wallace is remembered as “the disinterested patriotic hero whose only concern was the liberty and protection of his fellow Scots.” Comparatively, “Bruce is a successful politician. He achieves more, but in some ways his hands are dirtier.”

Braveheart famously depicts Bruce (played by Angus MacFayden) betraying Wallace during the Battle of Falkirk in 1298, then having a change of heart and rescuing the downed Scots leader from the wrath of the English. Yet there’s no historical evidence Bruce was at Falkirk, nor that he directly betrayed Wallace (although he did switch sides several times in these early years). As Brown explains, the story is mainly cited to reflect how Wallace’s failure inspired Bruce’s later success: “[There’s] the idea of Wallace standing in for Bruce in a sense, but Bruce failing to perform that [leadership] role at that stage.”

The defeat at Falkirk marked the unofficial end of Wallace’s campaign—he resigned as Guardian of Scotland and went on the run. This is where Outlaw King picks up. With the independence movement largely crushed, Bruce and most of the Scottish lords submitted to Edward’s authority.

John Comyn continued battling the English until February 1304, when he negotiated peace terms that restored Scotland’s “laws, usages, customs and liberties” and provided for a representative assembly. Around this time, Bruce returned to Scotland, likely with an eye toward the crown vacated by the still-exiled Balliol. Watson, author of Traitor, Outlaw, King, describes the soon-to-be king’s actions during this period as “incredibly duplicitous.” He’d pledged fealty to Edward I and England, but this didn’t stop him from forming a vague agreement of mutual support with the powerful Bishop of St. Andrews.

Felix Philippoteaux's 1856 rendering of the "Death of Comyn" (Wikimedia Commons)

This tangled web of alliances culminated in that deadly February 10, 1306, meeting between Bruce and Comyn, the two main contenders for the Scottish throne. It’s uncertain what the pair actually discussed, but the near-contemporary Flores Historiarum posits that Bruce had “first secretly and then openly” begun gathering support for his claim. When asked if he’d agree to crown his rival, Comyn “firmly replied no … so [Bruce] slaughtered him.”

Watson says she is convinced Bruce arrived in Dumfries with the intention of striking down Comyn, whom he worried was on the verge of claiming the Scottish crown.

“[Bruce] was utterly consistent, utterly ruthless and utterly convinced that he should be the king of Scots,” she says, arguing that his ever-changing allegiances reflected, in his point of view, an “entirely consistent” means of achieving this singular goal.

Brown offers a more sympathetic reading that attributes the act of “unpremeditated violence” to personal antagonism between Bruce and Comyn. As he points out, Comyn’s death alienated Bruce from his victim’s powerful family, an unwise step given the coming resumption of hostilities with England. The circumstances of the murder also led Pope Clement V to excommunicate Bruce, complicating his already uncertain path forward.

In the weeks between killing Comyn and ascending to the throne, Bruce rallied support in southwest Scotland. He issued demands to Edward I, promising to “defend himself with the longest stick that he had” if they went unmet, and received absolution for his sins from the Bishop of Glasgow.

Declared a fugitive for both his sacrilege and breach of fealty, Bruce had little to lose by going one step further and seizing the crown. On March 25, 1306, he was invested with the Scottish kingship in a surprisingly elaborate ceremony held at Scone Abbey. Despite lacking the traditional coronation stone, diadem and scepter, all of which had transferred to England in 1296, Robert officially became King of Scots.

Some 40 years after the First War of Scottish Independence, Archbishop John Barbour composed an epic retelling of the conflict. Heavily situated in the “Bruce as hero” camp, the poem characterizes the period between Bruce’s coronation and his victory at Bannockburn in 1314 as a journey of redemption.

Comyn’s killing was “obviously homicide,” Brown explains, “but it's also blasphemy and treason. So those crimes are ones that Bruce has to expunge from his soul by his … struggles and his suffering.”

As Outlaw King attests, Bruce’s troubles started soon after he was crowned king. Edward sent Aymer de Valence, Comyn’s brother-in-law, to crush the rebellion. By early June, de Valence had captured two of Bruce’s key supporters, the bishops of St. Andrews and Glasgow, and secured the aid of Scots loyal to Comyn.

During the summer of 1306, Bruce suffered two defeats in quick succession: At the June 19 Battle of Methven, de Valence took the Scottish forces completely by surprise with an early morning sneak attack. Just under two months later, Bruce faced off with members of the MacDougall clan, an ally of the Comyns, at Dalrigh. Outnumbered and unprepared, the Scots king’s army rapidly dispersed. Bruce barely evaded capture, and over the next several months, he experienced a string of personal tragedies. Three of his four brothers fell into English hands and were hung, drawn and quartered. His wife, daughter and sisters were similarly betrayed and remained Edward’s prisoners until 1315.

At a certain point, Michael Penman writes in Robert the Bruce, it becomes difficult to trace the Scottish king’s movements. He spent the winter in hiding, perhaps on an island off the western coast, and, according to a popular but likely apocryphal tale, passed the hours by observing a spider in a cave. Disheartened by his military and personal losses, Bruce allegedly saw echoes of his struggle in the spider’s repeated attempts to swing itself from one corner to another. When the spider finally succeeded, it inspired Bruce to launch a second wave of rebellion.

Despite the spider legend’s suspect origins, Michael Brown says the story exemplifies Bruce’s reputation as a “model of perseverance.” This tenacity also forms an undercurrent of The Outlaw King, which finds its protagonist declaring himself “done with running and … sick of hiding.”

In both the film and historical record, 1307 marks a turning point in Scotland’s drive for independence. Bruce returned with a set of revamped guerrilla tactics that took advantage of the country’s rugged terrain. In doing so, he created a model of Scottish warfare that lasted long beyond his fight.

“It’s essentially run away and hide,” Brown explains. “Take to the hills, harry [the enemy’s] flanks, stop them living off of the land, but don’t risk a battle.”

Bruce’s forces secured a minor victory at the Battle of Glen Trool—really more of a skirmish—in April 1307. The following month, the Scots faced off with de Valence once again, this time at Loudoun Hill. Prior to the battle, Bruce surveyed the area and concocted a plan to restrict the movements of de Valence’s horsemen, who would otherwise overwhelm the Scottish spearmen fighting on foot. As Fiona Watson writes in Robert the Bruce, the newly confident commander ordered three trenches dug at right angles to the road, ensuring that only a limited number of cavalry would be able to reach the Scots ensconced within. The English outnumbered Bruce’s men by 3,000 to 600, according to Barbour’s poem, but were wary to ride directly into the Scottish warriors’ spears. Those who did found themselves dashed upon the ground, and as the battle drew to a close, Barbour notes that “one might hear the sound / Of shivered lances and the cry / Of wounded men in agony.”

Outlaw King concludes soon after the Battle of Loudoun Hill, content to treat this victory as a sign of the war’s changing tides (and as a proxy for the better-known Battle of Bannockburn, a 1314 meeting that saw the Scots defeat similarly superior English forces). The meeting certainly proved, in Watson’s words, that “even if Bruce had been excommunicated by the pope for the murder of John Comyn, God could still favor him.”

In reality, the fight for independence trundled on for another 21 years, concluding only with the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton in March 1328. By this point, Edward I was long gone—he died in July 1307, leaving his infamously inept son Edward II in control—and it was his grandson Edward III, newly ascended to the throne in place of his deposed father, who actually agreed to Bruce’s terms.

Bruce died on June 7, 1329, just one month shy of his 55th birthday. Although he’d only enjoyed one year of peacetime, the king went to his grave secure in the knowledge that Scotland’s sovereignty was safe—at least for the time being. Before his death, Bruce asked longtime friend James “Black” Douglas (Outlaw King’s Aaron Taylor-Johnson plays the Scottish lord with frenetic fervor) to bring his heart on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Unfortunately, the ever-restless Douglas stopped to support Spain’s Alfonso XI in his campaign against the Moors and was killed in battle. According to legend, he threw the casket holding Bruce’s heart ahead of him before entering the fray, declaring, “Lead on brave heart, I’ll follow thee.” Bruce’s heart was ultimately retrieved and interred at Melrose Abbey, while the rest of his body was laid to rest in the royal mausoleum at Dunfermline Abbey. The king’s epitaph, somewhat ironically, declared Bruce “the unconquered Robert, blessed king … [who] brought to freedom / the Kingdom of the Scots.”

The image of Bruce as model king and consummate defender of Scotland endures to this day, but the man behind the myth is harder to pinpoint: Whereas predecessor William Wallace is, according to Watson, “an archpatriot,” Bruce is a figure whose early years were marked by murder at the high altar, shifting loyalties and a string of military failures. It’s also worth noting that the peaceful independence Bruce fought for lasted just a few years, with hostilities starting up again in 1332 and continuing sporadically until the 1707 Act of Union brought England and Scotland together under the single entity of Great Britain. But Brown argues that Bruce’s accomplishments weren’t diminished by the Act of Union. In fact, he says, the legendary king came to be “the guarantor of Scottish liberties” within the united realm.

Watson summarizes Bruce’s legacy best, concluding in Traitor, Outlaw, King that it’s natural to suspect the warrior king’s motives.

“But,” she concludes, “we cannot deny his achievements.”

Log entries

  • "Personal log, supplemental. Even after a year of finding my way alone, I truly believed I could find a way to fit back into this uniform, onto this ship. Now I'm not so sure. I've become someone new still just as committed to the Federation, to my friends — but there's a distance between us now. I know I'll never be at peace until I solve the Burn. But I don't know if I can do it from Discovery. This may not be my home anymore, and I don't know what that means or where it will lead me." — Michael Burnham

From Its Beginnings To Bankruptcy, A Historical Timeline Of JCPenney

SAN BRUNO, CALIFORNIA - MAY 15: The parking lot in front of a JCPenney store at The Shops at . [+] Tanforan Mall on May 15, 2020 in San Bruno, California. JCPenney avoided bankruptcy after the company paid down paid $17 million in debt on Friday after missing two previous payments.JCPenney has an estimate $3.6 billion in debt. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

A business should not have to be judged by its bankruptcy, especially when that business is JCPenney. Unfortunately, Friday’s filing wasn’t entirely unexpected. JCPenney has been trying to find its way for quite some time. Its unsustainable debt load, compounded by COVID-19, just pushed it over the edge. Whatever happens next is all up in the air. Everything these days seems all up in the air.

Below is a timeline that outlines most of the peaks and valleys, mostly peaks, of this great American retail institution.

April 14, 1902: James Cash Penney, along with two partners, opens the 25-foot by 40-foot “Golden Rule Store” in the mining town of Kemmerer, Wyoming. Annual sales total $2,800. The original “Mother Store” has remained in operation.

1907: James Cash Penney buys out his original partners and assumes sole control of the business. The Golden Rule Store expands to 3 stores with annual sales of $166,313.

1912: With 34 stores, Penney annual sales reach $2 million.

1913: The company, headquartered in Salt Lake City since 1909, is incorporated as the J.C. Penney Co. In 1914, Penney relocates the headquarters to New York City in order to be closer to the country’s main garment district.

1922: Penney operates 371 stores with annual sales of $49 million.

1927: Penney’s celebrates its 25th anniversary. The cash-only business consists of 773 stores and sales of $115 million.

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1942: James Cash Penney gives a keynote address at the company’s 40th anniversary celebration in Montana. Penney states, “We feel that the Penney company is well equipped to make a substantial contribution toward thrift and savings of the nation.” The store count reaches 1,609 locations.

1952: Penney’s passes the $1 billion mark in annual sales. With 70,000 associates, the store states that it is the largest retail organization of its kind in the world.

In 1961, James Cash Penney compares pictures of his first store (left) with the new Hammond, . [+] Indiana, store. The first store, which opened April 14, 1902, was located in Kemmerer, Wyoming. He called it "The Golden Rule" to symbolize his belief that the Golden Rule should apply to business life as well as to personal life.

1962: After several years of study, the J.C. Penney Co. looks to dramatically change its business plan. It abandons its cash-only trading policy and establishes a credit operation. Penney enters the appliance business with its Penncrest brand, manufactured by GE Hotpoint. The company joins with Goodyear and plans auto centers to be located next to future stores. J.C. Penney purchases the Milwaukee-based General Merchandise Company and enters the catalog mail order business. Penney establishes a line of large discount department stores named Treasure Island in the Upper Midwest.

1963: On August 15, Penney’s opens its first full-line department store, located at the King of Prussia Plaza in suburban Philadelphia. With 32 departments, the 152,000-square-foot store is designed to be a prototype for future expansions into larger markets. The Penney catalog makes its official debut.

1969: Penney’s acquires the Pittsburgh-based Thrift Drug Company and enters the pharmacy business. Future discount stores are renamed Treasury and become one-stop shopping centers, from general merchandise to food departments. Penney’s enters the Belgium market and purchases a sizable interest in the retailer, Sarma, S.A. The company sells the Sarma-Penney firm in 1987.

1971: Founder James Cash Penney passes away at age 95. The company adopts the “JCPenney” moniker in its advertising. Annual sales reach $4 billion. Penney’s opens a line of four specialty stores in Italy. The stores, located in the Lombardy region, are sold in 1977.

1974: In addition to shopping mall expansions, JCPenney establishes a plan to build smaller retail stores in less urban areas. JCPenney now operates 354 full-line department stores, 1,289 soft goods stores, 31 Treasury discount stores, and 255 drug stores.

1977: “This is JCPenney” becomes the company slogan. Annual sales exceed $10 billion.

1980: Inflation and high interest rates severely impact JCPenney’s earnings. The company discontinues its Treasury discount store brand.

1982: JCPenney eliminates several departments such as major appliances, paint, hardware, lawn and garden merchandise, and fabrics. The company also sells its auto center business.

1983: The company introduces the Halston III line of fashion merchandise, the first collaboration between a high-end designer and a mass merchandiser. The line generates much publicity but ultimately damages the reputation of Halston’s couture business. Penney’s discontinues the line in 1988.

1988: JCPenney relocates its New York corporate headquarters, located at Avenue of the Americas and 52th Street, to Plano, Texas. The company entices its 3,600 corporate employees with a better “quality of life” environment as a benefit for the relocation.

1990: The company slogan becomes “Where Fashion Comes to Life.” A study shows that 70% of JCPenney’s customers are female.

1994: Women’s Wear Daily names JCPenney as the “Number One Best Store for Women’s Apparel” in the country. The company opens a trial store in Santiago, Chile.

1996: Penney acquires the Eckerd Drug Corporation. Eckerd operates 2,699 stores in 23 states.

1998: JCPenney joins the internet shopping era with jcpenney.com. Internet sales amount to $15 million for the inaugural year. The company purchases a controlling interest in Renner S.A., Brazil’s largest fashion retailer. JCPenney sells Renner in 2005.

1999: Penney’s performs below expectations at its department store and catalog businesses. A plan is devised to close multiple stores in order to improve cash flow.

The entrance to Little Rock's University Mall JCPenney store, as seen in May 2007, reflects the old . [+] Penney's signage. The store, along with the entire mall, closed by the end of 2007.

2000: JCPenney defines its customer as “youthful in attitude though slightly older in age.”

2002: Penney celebrates its 100th year. The company operates 1,075 stores in all 50 states, in addition to Puerto Rico and Mexico. JCPenney employs 267,000 associates. Annual sales reach $14.8 billion. The jcpenney.com website becomes the largest online retailer of apparel and home furnishings.

2004: The company sells its Eckerd Drug division and retires $1.7 billion in long-term debt. JCPenney focuses on internet sales as its best source for future growth.

2006: JCPenney develops a partnership with Sephora to open full cosmetic boutiques within its larger department stores.

2009: After 46 years, Penney’s discontinues its popular catalog, along with its large network of Outlet Stores. On July 31, JCPenney opens a Manhattan store located in the former Gimbels building on 33rd Street. The much-celebrated store is designed to compete reputation-wise with the Macy’s Herald Square flagship. The company proceeds with a new “off mall” store format for future expansions.

NEW YORK, NY, UNITED STATES - 2018/07/08: JCPenney's Manhattan store, in the former Gimbels . [+] flagship, opened in 2009. (Photo by Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

2012: JCPenney dramatically changes its structure. CEO Ron Johnson, who began his tenure in November 2011, tries to develop “America’s favorite store by creating a specialty department store experience.” The executive leadership understands the risks but goes forward with the plan. In February 2012, JCPenney, renamed “JCP,” institutes a “Fair Square” pricing policy that eliminates sales and promotions. The stores are reconfigured into separate shops. Popular store brands are reduced or eliminated. Sales decline 24%. The company admits that the new sales policies and “merchandise misjudgments” have led to a disastrous business decision. Macy’s files a lawsuit against Penney’s for illegally obtaining a merchandising agreement with the Martha Stewart brand. JCPenney eventually loses the court battle. The company’s stock price becomes extremely volatile and its credit rating is severely downgraded. Johnson is removed as CEO in April 2013 and former CEO Myron E. Ullman III is reinstated. Previous pricing policies and merchandise offerings are slowly reinstated.

2016: JCPenney reports $4.8 billion of long-term highly leveraged debt. High inventory levels continue to impact the company’s bottom line. JCPenney reenters the major appliance business.

2017: In order to pay off part of its debt load, JCPenney sells its Plano, Texas headquarters campus for $353 million. The company leases back 65% of its previously used space.

2019: Jill Soltau, named CEO in October 2018, helps develop a new concept store for JCPenney. The Hurst, Texas store, near the Plano headquarters, is outfitted with a fitness studio, children’s play areas, and other amenities. The company discontinues its major appliances department after only 3 years. Financial issues, including massive debt, continue to hang dark clouds over the firm.

2020: JCPenney stock falls below $1 a share, putting it at risk of being delisted from the New York Stock Exchange. The company reports an accumulated $3.7 deft load on February 1. Developing fears of COVID-19 create anxiety within the corporate headquarters, in addition to shoppers. JCPenney officially closes all stores on April 1 and furloughs many of its employees. In early May, Sephora threatens to terminate its agreement and pull out of JCPenney stores.

May 15, 2020: JCPenney files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. With 846 stores and 85,000 employees, the department store plans hundreds of permanent store closures as a means to reduce debt and avoid liquidation. Though the company has been struggling for the past several years, JCPenney cites COVID-19 as a large reason for Friday’s bankruptcy filing.

This post was updated on May 17, 2020 in order to reflect correct information posted within the 1962-1963 headings.


Diverse work from 1820 to 1840

In 1821, following Hans Christian Oersted's discovery of electro-magnetism, Faraday discovered electro-magnetic rotations, the principle behind the electric motor. In the early 1820s he also liquefied gases and in 1825 he discovered what was later called benzene.

In the late 1820s much of his time was spent working on a project to improve optical glass for the Admiralty, so it wasn't until 1831 that he was able to return to his research on electricity. His discovery of electro-magnetic induction in 1831 commenced a remarkable decade of work. Amongst other things, he rewrote the theory of electrochemistry (coining many words still in use today such as electrode and ion) and established his laws of electrolysis. In 1836 he built the Faraday cage, which showed that measurements of electric charge depended on the electrical state of the observer. This observation led Faraday to develop his theory that electricity was the result of varying magnetic forces between particles rather than a fluid as previously supposed.

The 1840s and field theory

In the 1840s Faraday argued against two major theories of 19th-century physics - that matter was ultimately divisible into chemical atoms, and that light travelled by flowing through a substance called the aether. Looking for alternative explanations helped him towards his discovery of the magneto-optical effect and diamagnetism in 1845 and culminated in his establishment of the field theory of electromagnetism which, when mathematised by William Thomson (later Lord Kelvin) and James Clark Maxwell, became (and remains) one of the cornerstones of physics.

1989 Nike Air Jordan IV

Coming in a choice of 4 original colourways, this model was the first to be released to the global market. The beginning of a ginormous, well-oiled, money-spinning machine for Nike and Jordan.

Another sneaker in the collection that profited from product placement, appearing in the popular Spike Lee movie ‘Do The Right Thing’ and cementing the brand in popular culture.

Eagle-eyed viewers of ‘The Last Dance’ documentary will have noticed His Airness sporting these sneakers whilst sinking his game-winning shot vs. Utah Jazz in game 5 of the 1989 playoffs too. They weren’t just made to look good, it turns out.

British Royal Family History

Elizabeth II has reigned for 69 years, 4 months, and 10 days.

Queen Elizabeth II became Queen of the United Kingdom and Head of the Commonwealth on 6th February 1952. She is head of the British Royal Family, has 4 children, 8 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren, and is 95 years, 1 month, and 26 days old.

She is the 32nd great-granddaughter of King Alfred the Great who was the first effective King of England 871-899. See Royal Family Tree.

She was crowned at Westminster Abbey on 2nd June 1953, nearly eighteen months after she succeeded her father, King George VI who died on 6th February 1952. As of today she has reigned for 69 years, 4 months, and 10 days. 2nd June 2013 was the 60th anniversary of her coronation. She will have reigned for 70 years on 6th February 2022 and plans are being put in place to stage a series of events from 2-5 June 2022 to celebrate her 70th Platinum Jubilee.

On 21st December 2007 she became the oldest reigning British monarch having lived longer than Queen Victoria who died 22nd January 1901 aged 81 years, 7 months and 29 days. On 20th November 2020 Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her 73rd wedding anniversary. On 21st April 2020 she became 94 years old.

On 10th September 2015 Queen Elizabeth II became the longest reigning monarch in over 1,200 years of British History when the length of her reign surpassed her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria who reigned for 63 years and 7 months from 20th June 1837 to 22nd January 1901. See British Kings & Queens by Length of Reign.

2017 was the 100th anniversary of the House of Windsor. It was founded by the Queen's grandfather King George V on 17th July 1917.

The Queen and her husband Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, were married on 20th November 1947 at Westminster Abbey, and in 2020 celebrated their 73rd wedding anniversary. Prince Philip died at Windsor on 9th April 2021 just 2 months before his 100th birthday. He was the longest ever serving royal consort and oldest spouse of a reigning British monarch.

Their eldest son Prince Charles became 72 years old on 14th November 2020 and is the longest waiting and oldest ever heir to the throne. See British Kings & Queens by Age of Ascent.

On 29th April 2011 the Queen's grandson Prince William, who is 2nd in line to the throne, married Catherine (Kate) Middleton in Westminster Abbey. They are now the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and in Scotland the Earl and Countess of Strathearn. On 22nd July 2013 their first child Prince George was born. He is now 3rd in Line of Succession to the thone after his father, Prince William, and his grandfather Prince Charles. Their second child Princess Charlotte was born on 2nd May 2015 and is 4th in line. Their 3rd child, Prince Louis who is 5th in line, was born on 23rd April 2018.

The Queen's grandson Prince Henry (known as Harry), who is 6th in line to the throne, and Meghan Markle were married in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, on 19th May 2018. They are now the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, and in Scotland the Earl and Countess of Dumbarton. Their son Archie was born on 6th May 2019, and their daughter Lilibet on 4th June 2021. They have stepped down from their royal roles and now live in California.

The Queen's granddaughter Princess Eugenie married Jack Brooksbank in St George's Chapel on the 12th October 2018. Their first child August Philip was born on 9th February 2021. Her sister Princess Beatrice married Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi in the Royal Chapel of All Saints, Windsor, on 17th July 2020.

Elizabeth II is Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and Head of the Commonwealth of Nations. Great Britain was formed 310 years ago by the Act of Union between England and Scotland on 1st April 1707. More about Great Britain and the United Kingdom.

As well as the United Kingdom, she is Queen of Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Jamaica, Barbados, the Bahamas, Grenada, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Antigua and Barbuda, Belize, and Saint Kitts and Nevis, where she is represented by Governors-General. The sixteen countries of which she is Queen are known as Commonwealth Realms, and their combined population is 150 million.

She is Head of the Commonwealth of Nations comprising 54 member states and over 20% of the Word's land in North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania. The aims of the Commonwealth include the promotion of democracy, human rights, good governance, the rule of law, individual liberty, egalitarianism, free trade, multilateralism, and world peace. The 2.4 billion people in the member states account for almost a third of the world's population.

Her reign of over 69 years has seen 14 Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom, and numerous Prime Ministers in the Commonwealth Realms of which she is (or was) also Head of State between them she has had a total of over 170 Prime Ministers including 12 Canadian and 18 Australian Prime Ministers during her reign. There have been 14 US Presidents during her reign.

The 1950s

The 1950s are sometimes referred to as the Golden Age. Color TV was invented, the polio vaccine was discovered, Disneyland opened in California, and Elvis Presley gyrated his hips on "The Ed Sullivan Show." The Cold War continued as the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union began.

The 1950s also saw segregation ruled illegal in the U.S. and the beginning of the civil rights movement.

A Michael Jackson Timeline

Follow a chronology of the singer's life, highlighted by breathtaking commercial success, intense public scrutiny and odd lifestyle choices:

Aug. 29, 1958: Michael Joseph Jackson is born to Katherine and Joe Jackson in Gary, Ind. His older siblings are Rebbie, Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, LaToya and Marlon. Later, brother Randy and sister Janet join the family. Katherine Jackson raises her children as Jehovah's Witnesses.

1962: Michael, Marlon, Jackie, Tito and Jermaine combine to form a band. At first, their father does not approve, but later changes his mind and manages the band. Jackson sings lead vocal on most of the songs.

1968: Motown signs The Jackson 5.

1969: The song "I Want You Back" jumps to the number-one singles spot. "ABC (1970)," "The Love You Save" and "I'll Be There" follow suit.

1971-1972: Jackson goes solo, and his singles "Got to Be There," "Rockin' Robin" and "I Wanna Be Where You Are" storm the charts — as does "Ben," a ballad about a pet rat featured in the horror movie Ben.

1978: Jackson makes his film debut as the Scarecrow in The Wiz, an urban retelling of the classic film The Wizard Of Oz. Diana Ross co-stars as Dorothy. Jackson is said to wear his makeup long after production hours.

1979: Jackson records Off The Wall, his first album as a solo artist. The singles "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" and "Rock With You" both shoot to number-one hits.

1980: Jackson nabs his first Grammy Award for Best R&B Male Vocal Performance.

1982-1983: Jackson releases the album Thriller, and it tops the charts for 37 weeks. Seven singles dash into the top 10, including "Billie Jean," "Beat It," "Thriller" and "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'." The extended video sequence on "Thriller" has Jackson morph into a werewolf. Jackson unveils his signature dance move, the moonwalk.

1984: Questions arise about Jackson's changing appearance, and some wonder if the singer has had plastic surgery. He builds a home on 2,700 acres in Central California, complete with its own amusement park rides, and calls it Neverland.

1985: Jackson and Lionel Richie pen "We Are The World," with the proceeds from sales of the single slated for hunger relief in Africa. Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, Cyndi Lauper and other prominent artists lend their voices to the song. It sells a record seven million copies.

1987: Bad, Jackson's third album, hits the shelves. He embarks on a world tour.

1988: Doubleday publishes Jackson's autobiography, Moonwalk.

1990: Thriller goes platinum for the 21st time and the Guinness Book of World Records certifies it as the best-selling album ever. To date, it has sold 65 million copies.

1992: Jackson tells Oprah Winfrey he has vitiligo, a skin disorder that destroys melanin and, in severe cases, can leave a victim devoid of skin color. He also reveals that his father emotionally abused him as a child.

1993: Jackson is accused in civil court of molesting an 11-year-old boy. Police descend on Neverland and subject Jackson to a full body search. "It was the most humiliating ordeal of my life," he says in a televised statement in December.

1994: Jackson settles the molestation case out of court. The boy is paid more than $15 million, to be held in trust until he is an adult. The parents of the boy receive $1.5 million each.

May 26, 1994: Jackson and Lisa-Marie Presley tie the knot. The marriage will last less than two years.

1995: Sony releases HIStory: Past, Present and Future Book I. Janet Jackson performs a duet with her older brother on "Scream."

1996: Jarvis Cocker of the British band Pulp accosts Jackson in mid-act at the BRIT Awards. Jackson was surrounded by children and a rabbi performing "Earth Song." Cocker claims Jackson had attempted to imitate Christ.

1997: Jackson marries Debbie Rowe, a nurse. Rowe gives birth to a son, Prince Michael. Jackson is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

1998: Rowe bears a girl, Paris Michael Katherine.

1999: Jackson and Rowe split.

2000: "Billie Jean," "Rock With You," "I Want You Back" and "Beat It" make Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 100 greatest songs of all time.

2001: Sony releases Invincible, which is panned by critics and does not sell well. Jackson battles a $21-million civil suit by a German concert promoter who says the singer backed out of two concerts and pocketed an advance.

2002: Jackson lifts his newborn son, Prince Michael, over a hotel room terrace so fans can glimpse — and is roundly criticized for endangering his child. The identity of the child's mother is never revealed. Jackson says the child is the result of artificial insemination from a surrogate mother and his own sperm cells.

2003: Jackson is charged with seven counts of child sexual abuse and two counts of administering an intoxicating agent. All charges were made by the same boy, Gavin Arvizo, who was under 14 at the time of the alleged crime.

2005: Jackson is acquitted on all counts in the Arvizo case in the the People v. Jackson trial in Santa Maria, Calif.

2006: Financial troubles force closure on the main house on the Neverland Ranch. Jackson agrees to a Sony-backed refinancing deal. Jackson makes his first public appearance since the Arvizo trial to accept eight records from the Guinness World Records in London, including "Most Successful Entertainer of All Time." In late 2006, Jackson agrees to share joint custody of his first two children with ex-wife Debbie Rowe.

2007: Jackson and Sony buy Famous Music LLC from Viacom, which gives him rights to songs by Eminem, Shakira, Beck and others.

2008: Jackson issues Thriller 25, celebrating 25 years of the iconic album. The reissue hits number one in eight countries and reached number two in the U.S. Sony releases King of Pop, a fan-curated compilation.

June 25, 2009: Jackson dies in Los Angeles at 50 after going into cardiac arrest.

The History of Autism

Doctors have come a long way since 1908, when the word autism was first used. Here's a look at the history of autism spectrum disorder.

You might think of autism as a new problem because it has become so much more prevalent in recent years. But it&aposs actually been on the books for more than 70 years--and our thinking about the condition has changed dramatically during that time. Here are the key events in autism history.

1908: The word autism is used to describe a subset of schizophrenic patients who were especially withdrawn and self-absorbed.

1943: American child psychiatrist Leo Kanner, M.D., publishes a paper describing 11 children who were highly intelligent but displayed "a powerful desire for aloneness" and "an obsessive insistence on persistent sameness." He later names their condition "early infantile autism."

1944: A German scientist named Hans Asperger describes a "milder" form of autism now known as Asperger&aposs Syndrome. The cases he reported were all boys who were highly intelligent but had trouble with social interactions and specific obsessive interests.

1967: Psychologist Bruno Bettelheim popularizes the theory that "refrigerator mothers," as he termed them, caused autism by not loving their children enough. (Spoiler alert: This is completely false.) "Post-World War II, there was a lot of psychoanalytic work done on autism where researchers looked solely at the impact of life experiences," explains Parents advisor Fred Volkmar, M.D., director of the Child Study Center at Yale University School of Medicine and editor-in-chief of the Journal of Autism & Developmental Disorders. "They didn&apost consider the role of biology or genetics, which we now understand to be the main cause." Autism is also classified under schizophrenia in the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, although scientists now know there is no link between the conditions.

1977: Research on twins finds that autism is largely caused by genetics and biological differences in brain development.

1980: "Infantile autism" is listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) for the first time the condition is also officially separated from childhood schizophrenia.

1987: The DSM replaces "infantile autism" with a more expansive definition of "autism disorder," and includes a checklist of diagnostic criteria. UCLA psychologist Ivar Lovaas, Ph.D., publishes the first study showing how intensive behavior therapy can help children with autism--thus giving new hope to parents.

1988: The movie Rain Man is released. It stars Dustin Hoffman as an autistic savant who has a photographic memory and can calculate huge numbers in his head. "This was important for raising public awareness of the disorder," Dr. Volkmar notes, although not every kid on the autism spectrum has these kinds of skills.

1991: The federal government makes autism a special education category. Public schools begin identifying children on the spectrum and offering them special services.

1994: Asperger&aposs Syndrome is added to the DSM, expanding the autism spectrum to include milder cases in which individuals tend to be more highly functioning.

1998: A study published in The Lancet suggests that the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine causes autism. This finding was quickly debunked.

2000: Vaccine manufacturers remove thimerosal (a mercury-based preservative) from all routinely given childhood vaccines due to public fears about its role in autism--even though, again, the vaccine-autism link has been debunked.

2009: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 1 in 110 children have autism spectrum disorders, up from 1 in 150 in 2007, though the CDC notes that the increase stems at least in part from improved screening and diagnostic techniques.

2013: The DSM-5 folds all subcategories of the condition into one umbrella diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Asperger&aposs Syndrome is no longer considered a separate condition. ASD is defined by two categories: 1) Impaired social communication and/or interaction. 2) Restricted and/or repetitive behaviors.

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