Monday, April 27, 2015

History: The Year is 1566

I've uploaded year 1566 to the TSP Wiki...

Here are some one liners...

Reformed Christianity and the End of the World As We Know It -- Iconoclasts are people who throw down idols and the Reform Christians (or Cavinists) take that literally as they destroy church images in 1566. A modern day Calvinist wrote the book, "How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It."

Yo, Ho, Ho... Pieces of Eight and the US Dollar -- The new King of Spain is minting new coinage that will eventually become such a common coin of commerce that the US dollar will be based upon it.

Suleiman the Magnificent is Dead -- From many standpoints he earned the name "magnificent" but he wasn't always a nice man.

Reformed Christianity and the End of the World As We Know It

Despite any laws supporting religious freedom, there is a war going on between the Catholic establishment and Protestant radicals. Currently, (Catholic) Spain is running the Netherlands. As the (Catholic) Church of Saint Lawrence nears completion, Reformed Christians (or Calvinists) rise up to deface the church images and throw down the statues they perceive as objects of worship prohibited by the Bible. Even though the (Catholic) Council of Trent has prohibited the worship of images, apparently the Calvinists think the edict does not go far enough because the Council of Trent does not prohibit the images themselves. The word "iconoclast," comes from the Greek, meaning "image breaker" and the Reformed Christians take that literally. Ten thousand men with torches move north as the Eighty Years' War is ready to kick off... almost. The property damage to Catholic Church property will be severe but unlike similar demonstrations in France, the loss of life will be less. It will not be zero, though. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
The original Reformed Christians (or Calvinists) were not wild-eyed peasants. A large contingent of them were noblemen [6]. John Calvin was a scholar who studied the Scriptures with a view to detail that appealed to the nobility. His followers had a reputation as being "purists" or "puritans" meaning those who adhered strictly to the tenets of their religion regardless of which religion they were following. Thus there were Catholic "puritans" as well. Over time the Puritans became a distinguishable religious group. In the modern day, one distinguishable Reformed Christian is James Wesley Rawles, the author of "How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It." He calls himself a "five point Calvinist," and he is a past guest of The Survival Podcast, Episode 1242. [7]

Yo, Ho, Ho... Pieces of Eight and the US Dollar

King Philip the 2nd of Spain began making changes to the coinage this year. The Spanish doubloon has been in use for a few years now, but the King introduces a silver coin worth 8 reals (ray-ahls). It will be called "pieces of eight" because the coin was often cut into pieces. One side of the coin has a cross stamped on its face making it easier to cut the coin evenly. The King also introduces a gold coin worth 16 silver reals (ray-ahls) which is half a Spanish doubloon. It's not really a new coin but it has its weight changed. These coins and the Spanish doubloon will be the coins of commerce for centuries to come. They will also serve as the basis for the US dollar, but that's another story. [8] [9] [10]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
With a new King of Spain, new coinage had to reflect that fact. The pieces of eight was changed in weight in 1598 and called the Spanish dollar. This was done to simplify the exchange into German thalers (which is where we get the word "dollar"). The Spanish dollar was used in the United States as legal tender until 1857. Since the dollar was based on a "pieces of eight" coin, you get the slang term for a quarter... "two bits". This term was still in use in the 1960s though the term was frowned upon. Some people still use a tune and rhythm but many forget the little phrase that goes along with it..."Shave and a haircut... two bits.". Once proper US coinage was available in 1857, using foreign coinage in commerce (and the terminology that went along with it) was frowned upon by the public... but perhaps not in barbershops. Collecting such coins was fine. [11]

Suleiman the Magnificent is Dead

The Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Suleiman the Magnificent, is considered the greatest military leader of all the sultans. He ruled over a Golden Age of the Ottoman Empire meaning that he supported the arts. He conquered Constantinople, the last of the Eastern Roman Empire. It is now Istanbul. He threatened Vienna and although he was stopped by the Holy Roman Emperor, it was a close thing and an uneasy truce. He dies this year of a heart attack but his troops are mopping up the conquest of Hungary so they ship his body back to Constantinople in secret. He was 71. He is succeeded by Sultan Selim the 2nd... also known as "Selim the Drunkard." Looks like Central Europe is going to catch a break. [12] [13]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Suleiman the Magnificent really was a great leader, but by modern standards he was not a very nice man. He had his eldest son, Mustafa, killed... mostly due to the intrigues of his favorite wife, Roxelana. Roxelana was not Mustafa's mother, and if he succeeded the throne, all of her sons would be strangled. By starting a rumor that Mustafa wanted to assassinate his father, it was a forgone conclusion what would happen next. Mustafa himself was strangled and that was how Roxelana's son, Selim the Drunkard, came to succeed to the throne. Roxelana was the daughter of a Ukrainian Orthodox priest. She was captured and made part of the Sultan's harem. She eventually became Suleiman's favorite and wielded a great deal of power of her own. [14] [15]

This Year on Wikipedia

Year 1566, Wikipedia.

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