Le Printemps what a lovely season, the weather is getting warmer by the day, Friday should be 22 C. which is Summer weather. This coming weekend is also the first official Long Weekend of Summer, the signal to open the cottage and start up the bar-b-q.
I was looking up recent photos of Versailles which re-opens today after months of being shut to all due to the pandemic restrictions in France. During these longs months the restorers of the Palace did a lot of work in various areas of the vast Chateau. This included a deep clean of various rooms and the return of furniture from the central national warehouse of important historical furniture of France. One piece in particular was the work desk of Louis XV made up of 20 different types of precious woods and of a secret mechanism operated with one key to close and lock it. This desk stayed in the bureau of the King until the revolution. It is now back where it belong, a magnificent piece of furniture. The restoration of the desk was paid for by Caterpillar France and Rolex, the desk has a two face clock which allows the king and his visitor on the other side to see the time. This wonderful piece of furniture was made in 1769, a real marvel and the clock works perfectly.
Many other private rooms or intimate rooms used by the King or Queen or other members of the Royal family have also been restored recently including carpets and drapes, all reproduce in the original fabric. This work is made possible due to archives and detailed descriptions, drawings and paintings and some piece of fabric which survived. You can see these rooms by appointment with a guide only. The rooms contain unique original artifacts of the period, rare books and porcelain and you would not want someone to bump into something.
The caveat is that Versailles you see today, the inside of the Palace evolved and is not what Louis XIV or Louis XV or even Louis XVI would have known, the palace was transformed and redecorated with each king and time and fashion dictate. Then the Palace was closed at the revolution, the furniture sold in most part to British and other European collectors for a pittance. Some was saved by Napoleon and by the return of the Bourbon Kings in 1814 under Louis XVIII and his brother Charles X and then their cousin Louis-Philippe remodelled wings of the palace where the apartments of the various Princes of the Kingdom were located into great galleries for his painting collection. So when visiting it is important to keep that in mind. Same for the gardens and le Petit and Grand Trianon or even le Hameau de la Reine which lost all its original furniture and is now decorated with Empire style furniture belonging to Empress Marie-Louise the second wife of Napoleon.
What has been recently recreated is the Grille Royale, which was the inner golden gate of the Cour d’Honneur which separated the first inner courtyard from a more sacred area which brought the special visitor within the proximity of the King. This golden gate was taken down at the revolution and was only restored starting in 2007, the work based on original drawings took 2 years to complete, cost 5 million Euros, is 80 meters long and weighs 15 tons, some 100,000 sheets of gold leaf was use to cover the gate.
I had to get up early today at 07:30am which is somewhat like the middle of the night for me. Usually I am a Crack of Noon riser which is the civilized time for retired folks like me.
So at 9:30am I had to be at the Club for the Thursday morning Coffee and Conversation program, today we had an Acadian historian Georges Arsenault, O.C., O.P.E.I whose family has been living on PEI since 1700. He is also an author and has written much about Acadian life and history on the Island. He also has a voluminous collection of old photos of Acadian Life on the Island dating back to 1860. He showed us many old photos of Acadian families and explained traditions in the period 1860 to 1950. It was fascinating, he had wedding photos dating from prior to 1946. How the common people lived if compared to high society, there was a stark difference. Brides has no wedding dress, they simply wore their Sunday best and so did the groom. Only people with money did the fashionable weddings the way we think of them today. The food prepared and served at weddings was also very different from today. Essentially the wedding would take place in Church at 7:30am and then the family would return home for breakfast at 9:00am. Back then Roman Catholics, Acadians are all R.C. , were not allowed to have food before Mass. Everyone was in their Sunday best and all of it took place in the Kitchen including the square dancing. What Acadians call in French souper (Supper) took place at Noon and both meals were offered by the Bride and her parents in their home. The Dinner at night around 6pm moved to the Groom’s parents home for more square dancing and food and of course Whiskey and Island Gin at 50 proof. That’s the Gin I buy for my Island friends, they do not want the English stuff at 40 Proof. The most important element of a successful wedding meal during the day was the desserts and sweets, some families could offer over 30 different types of sweets not including the Wedding Cake which was white and baked usually in the village by a woman who was known for her cakes and hired for that day. Which reminded me of my great Aunt Marie-Ange in Charlesbourg near Quebec City who was known at Christmas for her desserts and sweets.
The family photos are also interesting, most taken outdoors for the light in an age when no flash existed. Women in Acadian fashion have their heads covered by a bonnet or large scarf, custom being that only unmarried maidens could show their hair. Families were also large on average 12 kids and many upwards of 19 kids, all living under one roof in small farm houses. One wonders how they did it. It is only again after 1946 that people start having small families of 2 or 3 children.
After the talk, I went to my barber Jared who is a very nice person and great to chat with, we talked about what had happened the previous day in Washington D.C. at the Capitol building. He was working so could not watch television and was being told by his customers what was happening, he was in disbelief like I was and many other people. Though he remarked and I agree, we could see all this coming and were bracing for it. How come the Capitol Police did not prepare, were they over confident? I watch it all and was sickened by it, how can the symbol of a democracy be attacked like that by a mob which looked like Duck Dynasty. Ignorance on parade, truly sad. I was wondering if the Ceausescu solution could not be applied to Trump and his family, worked in Romania in 1989. What I fear like a lot of people is a possible return of another Trump type in 4 years, populist but more intelligent and cunning. Is the USA sliding into authoritarianism, it could happen after all 75 million Americans voted for him, hopefully not and the world will move on.
Afterwards I went to the Service Canada Office which provides info and registration for all Federal Government Programs, one stop shopping. This was instituted some 8 years ago by the Canadian Government. I was having some problem online with an application and could not get anyone at their 1-800 number unless you are willing to wait an hour or more on hold. So I simply went down to the Office and saw an Officer in 5 minutes. She answered my questions and all appears all right, I am much relieved.
So here we are the end of the Holiday Season with la Fête des Rois or Epiphany , now is the time to undo the Xmas decorations and fall into a kind of slumber which is January and February, the dull period of the year. The weather on the Island is uncertain, not cold not warm and a lot of overcast skies. Typical Northen European weather though we are in Atlantic Canada.
Tomorrow being la Fêtes des Rois the tradition in French culture is to have a special cake. The cake is to celebrate the visit of the 3 wise men to the manger to see baby Jesus, before his parents took him on a tax dodge to Egypt. I remember my mother making this cake or galette as it is called in French, an put a broad bean inside for one lucky kid to discover.
Celebrating the Epiphany with a gâteau des rois is a custom that originates from a Roman pagan ritual, which came to French Canada via France. The Romans would bake a cake, inside of which they would place a bean or a clay fish. Whoever discovered the object — regardless of his or her social status — would play king or queen for a day.
Recipe for the Gateau des Rois.
parchment paper, for the baking sheet
puff pastry dough
butter, unsalted, soft
1 1/3 cup
eggs size large
white flour (all purpose), to roll out the pastry
Before you start
Defrost the puff pastry dough at room temperature for 2 hours or overnight in the refrigerator. The dough should be flexible but still feel cold to the touch.
A hand-held or stand mixer will make things easier for this recipe.
Preheat the oven to 205°C/400°F. Butter a large baking sheet (about 30 x 38 cm) and line with parchment paper.
In a bowl, cream the butter with the sugar using a mixer, until light and fluffy. Fold in the almond meal, 2 eggs and rum. Set aside.
On a lightly floured board, roll out the puff pastry to 2 rounds of about 10 in (25 cm) diameter, using a rolling pin. Place one round on the baking sheet.
Transfer the almond mixture to the center of the round, leaving about 1 in (2,5 cm) on the edge. Drop one broad bean near the edge (to minimize the chances to find it when slicing the cake).Whisk the remaining egg with 1 tbsp water then brush the pastry edge. Cover with the second pastry round.
Seal all around the edge, gently pressing with a fork. Drill tiny holes in the upper crust, to allow steam to escape. Brush the crust with the beaten egg.
Bake in the middle of the oven 20-25 min, until golden.
The restoration of the Chapelle Royale of the Palace of Versailles (2018-2021) is coming to an end. Originally built in 1710 by Louis XIV it had never seen a complete restoration and after 1789 the palace was largely closed, furniture sold off and it became a white elephant. Other Kings like Louis Philippe tried to find a use for it and make some changes to interiors. After 1870 the Republican government wanted to use the palace for a parliament but that was short lived. The vast building was aging and had been built for a purpose by the original occupant the Sun King. For the last 100 years the palace was open as a neglected museum to a long ago age and it was used by the French Government for State visits and receptions. However in the last 50 years a vast and complex program of rehabilitation of the building and its gardens and fountains has been underway. Some of it paid for by the French State and some by private and public donations.
The Chapelle Royale is starting to emerge from its protective envelop.
Here are before and after pictures. The entire exterior has been cleaned, stone work repaired, the slate roof replaced and the lead roof ornaments including the cross have been recovered with their original gold leaf. Hundreds of specialists worked on this project.
Truly a splendid result to see. Work continues on other parts of the palace. Including recreating rooms with original furniture and recreating fabrics for upholstery and curtains. The organ of the Chapelle Royale was also completely rebuilt to give it its original sonority of 1710 which was very different from what modern organs produce.
I have studied history almost all my life, I enjoy reading on specific topics, I am not one for generalities in history or the facile comment or anecdotes to explain an event. I think that it is worth knowing exactly what happened or what was said from reliable sources who did their own research. I also love archeology and spent a lot of time studying ancient ruins to discover their secrets.
Last year a new book on Emperor Nero was published by Professor John F. Drinkwater, in his 457 page book he presents a very different picture of Nero who was Emperor of Rome for 14 years. He took every myth about Nero and goes about deconstructing it and presenting a narrative that throws doubt on what we have been told. It is fascinating reading,
Drinkwater shows that after the death of Nero who had fled Rome taking Via Nomentana, a street I know well since I lived just off it, he failed to kill himself and ask his servant to please help him out as the pretorian guards were closing in. Nera was the last of the Julio-Claudian line who were the first emperors of Rome the dynasty that succeeded him, the Flavians had good reasons to paint a black picture of him and went to great lenghts to do so, thus the awful dark image we have. To make things worse the Christian Church decided for propaganda purposes to make him out as the devil personified despite the fact that he did not persecute Christians as it as always been claimed.
Knowing historical facts is important to help us understand the world we live in and how we got here. There are numerous other events and historical figures who have suffered at the hands of popular history.
One woman who suffered to this day, is in fact a Hollywood favourite in movies and several movies have been made of her in the last 20 years. I speak of Queen Marie-Antoinette born Imperial Princess of Austria and who at the age of 14 was engaged to marry the Dauphin of France, Louis.
When she arrives in Versailles in 1770 after having travelled from Vienna in a great escort befitting her rank with many stops on the way, she had left behind her mother Empress Maria-Theresa and her family, she comes from a relatively relaxed Imperial Court to the most archaic and stultifying strict and arcane protocol laden Court of France. She is 14 years old, she is naive but also bold and thinks nothing of asking for what she wants to the horror of the Minister of King Louis XV, grandfather of the future Louis XVI.
At the Palace of Versailles she is given a room, her entire apartment is ONE ROOM which can be seen today after years of meticulously correct restoration. The room is a State Bedchamber and it is also the room where every morning all the ladies of the Court will gather to wake her up and dress her up following a complicated protocol she is quite unfamiliar with.
The decor of Versailles and her room, (she only has one room to live in), is the same since 1715 some 60 years previously and is faded and old reminiscent of the era of the Sun King Louis XIV. Being a precocious 14 year old she did not hesitate to ask the superintendant du Palais to redecorate and modernize her room. The royal architect was brought in and what followed was a lot of effort to try to twart her plans. The women around her who were ladies in waiting where much older than her and many were ancient, they had no patience with the young women, she was constantly criticized for not accepting French ways at Court. Her life was extremely boring and her fiancé Louis was not really interested in her and more in study of sciences and in build locks of all kinds. Their marriage would be for political alliance and military reasons. Madame du Barry the mistress of King Louis XV did not like her and she had her group around her who opposed the new alliance of France with Austria. However Marie-Antoinette was very popular with the common people.
Marie Antoinette portrait of 1771, age 15, said to be the favourite of her Mother Empress Maria-Theresa.
In May 1774 King Louis XV dies suddenly and she becomes Queen and with her accession to the throne she receives the Petit Trianon in the Park at Versailles from her husband King Louis XVI, where she will spend most of her time. The period 1774 to 1778 is problematic since this is the period of the greatest extravagance and spending on hundreds of dresses, jewels, etc all at enormous expense to the Treasury. Her husband doubles her annual budget to 280,000 French Pounds (Livres) which is a great sum. But all this stops suddenly in 1778 when she becomes a mother with the birth of her first child Marie-Therese Charlotte known as Madame Royale (1778-1851). Even her taste for dresses change into a new fashion from London, she also abandons jewellery and becomes a doting mother. She will have one other daughter Princesse Sophie who dies in 1787 and the ill-fated Louis XVII who will die under mysterious circumstances and disappear at age 10 in a dark jail cell in 1795. He had another brother Louis-Joseph who dies as an infant just before the revolution in June 1789.
However despite all the crisis leading to the revolution the biggest problem was one of the Kingdom’s budget and the ballooning deficit caused by 2 wars which ruined the French treasury and bad harvests causing famine. The first war with a deficit of 2.5 million pounds was the Seven year war between France/Austria against England/Prussia 1756-1763 and then the American War of Independence 1776-1783 creating another deficit of 1.7 million pounds for France, though this war was wildly popular in France and Lafayette was a National Hero. If these deficits did not exist many political problems would have been avoided.
Probably the greatest cause of the unpopularity of Marie-Antoinette was her resistance to any idea of change or political modernization proposed by the leaders of the various parties at the time. Since she had been brought up in a system of Absolute Monarchy, she could not imagine any other system of government, despite was she saw in America and in England with the Constitutional Monarchy with a Parliament. She also adopted the same strict religious Catholic attitude of the religious bigots at Court. This did not help her at all and her glacial austere attitude towards the revolutionaries made her a marked woman.
In the end her name was blackened by the revolutionaries who really had no case against her, the trial was a farce with trumped up charges. After the death of her husband in January 1793 the revolution had achieved their goal. So a case had to be made and political events in Europe with foreign armies massing on the French border from Prussia, Austria and England was enough to convince the population that she was the author of their misery. However on the day of her execution instead of taking her directly to her place of execution, the revolutionaries thought they could parade her around in the street to rouse public anger. They soon realize this was a big mistake politically speaking, the people in the street were silent, many kneeling in prayer for the Queen and men taking their hats off. For the people she was a mother and public opinion was not in favour of killing a woman who had children. She died age 37.
Marie-Antoinette lived in the age of Enlightenment, in England Queen Charlotte was a close personal friend. In Prussia, Frederick II the Great ruled, in Russia Catherine the Great was Tsarina. The age of Voltaire, Diderot and Rousseau. Napoleon Bonaparte was still an unknown Corsican.
Here is some music composed by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Le devin du Village which would have been familiar to Queen Marie-Antoinette, she may have seen a production of this operette.royal
A few days ago Juliette Gréco (1927-2020) described as the Muse of St-Germain-des-Prés and a figure of the après-guerre and the Existantialism Mouvement died in Ramatuelle in the Var region of France, age 93.
It was Jean-Paul Sartre, writer philosopher, screenwriter, political activist, biographer, and literary critic (1905-1980) who encouraged her to go into a singing career. His books on the topic fascinated a whole generation and was a way of looking at the world after the Second World War. I remember in school in Montreal we heard a lot about Sartre and our teachers would often quote him. My mother read his books and those of Simone de Beauvoir. It was the thing then and it all seems so long ago now. Though I think that revisiting Existentialism today while this pandemic is here might be helpful.
Existentialism is a form of philosophical enquiry that explores the nature of existence by emphasizing experience of the human subject—not merely the thinking subject, but the acting, feeling, living human individual.
Juliette Gréco is just one of those artists whose fame makes them immortal. She sang songs with lyrics written by French poets such as Jacques Prévert and Boris Vian and singers like Jacques Brel and Serge Gainsbourg. All the greats of the XXth century French culture. She had a very long career and she left her mark.
I chose this song Il n’y a plus d’après which I think represents that era. St-Germain-des-Prés of course refers to the Paris neighbourhood where political activism was concentrated amongst the students and was the spot to be for anyone who sought to be involved in politics, mostly left wing, socialist, communist. In the song she refers to her lover who has moved to the other end of Paris away from St-Germain-des-Prés, meaning away from life from real existence, from what matters.
It is cherry time now, all markets have them and we are in the second part of Summer, though the weather has been hot and humid and living by the ocean is a good thing for the breeze it brings constantly.
I have been reading the book written by Lady C. (Lady Colin Campbell) know as Georgie to her friends. She wrote and published a tell all book about Meghan and Harry entitled Meghan and Harry the true story. Lady C. does not like Meghan who the British Press now call Me Gain, for her rapacious quest for financial gains, the British Media is no kinder to Harry who they now call Blow Job Harry, apparently that is how Meghan won his heart. Lady C. got lots to say in her book and gives ample references.
Both of them come across as total idiots, she for not understanding or not paying attention to what she was getting into or as is now largely suspected she is a social climber and a gold digger who planned it all well and bagging Harry who is a dolt. He for seeking some silly revenge on his family for slights and for being the spare, well this is what happens in Royal Families, you simply have to carve a role for yourself. Meghan plays on Harry’s super emotional and sensitive nature prone to burst of rage, many anecdotes on that one from various people who were on the receiving end of his tantrums. Even the chef who cooked for both boys when they were kids, says that William was the mature practical one more like his father, while Harry was the air head. The boy got problems, I now understand better the remark made during our visit to Kensington Palace a year ago that Harry had mommy issues.
The one drawback to the book, it needs more editing and Lady C. got the part about Canada wrong when she speaks about Margaret Trudeau, the 70 something mother of our current Prime Minister. The newer book by Scobie and Durand Finding Freedom, I will give a pass. The whole affair is unbelievable, why could Harry not marry a nice German Princess like in the old days.
He was mentioning reading books from the family library entitled the 100 best stories. He was wondering if they really were the best stories written by some unknown authors. This got me thinking that Reader’s Digest once had books by famous authors in abridged versions and sold them in nice leather bound edition with gold trim, I do not know if anyone ever read them. I also remember thinking if you read one of those books could you really say you had read the book, it was an abridged version with sections cut out so not the actual complete work.
When it comes to stories the French literary scene has lots of authors but one in particular is Charles Perrault (1628-1703) who is said to have invented the concept of Fairy Tales. Another is Jean de la Fontaine (1621-1695) the famous fabulist. Both lived during the reign of Louis XIV, a golden age for the arts.
Perrault in my estimation is the classic story teller and his tales are world famous, immortal you could say. Little Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty, Blue Beard, Tom Thumb, Cinderella, etc.. His tales all have a moral lesson attached to them and he writes to impress upon the imagination and plays on the fears of the common man. Symbolism is important, good and evil represented by the dark forest, the wolf, witches, giants and ogres. His tales delight and frighten everyone really as they did then. He appeals to our basic instincts as humans all the while telling his tale.
Jean de la Fontaine in his famous fables equally tells tales which draws upon lessons for life, with a heavy dose of morality with punishments for those who do not heed the warnings.
Both Perrault and Lafontaine I learned at school and at home, they were the classic authors you simply had to know. I wonder if children still read those stories or is it all about super heroes now and dinosaurs.
When I arrived in Jordan in 1994, I was interested in learning more about the political history of the region, a complex history of a cosmopolitan and multicultural world. This world had known stability under Ottoman-Turk rule but the First World War would change all that forever and give us the region we know today. For 500 years the Ottoman-Turks ruled a vast Empire from Istanbul the Sultan was the shadow of God on Earth, this empire covered parts of Europe, extended over what is called the Middle-East up to the border with Persia/Iran and extended to Egypt, the Sudan, Libya and Tunisia. This was truly a multi-ethnic and multi-religious empire. By the end of the 19th century many weaknesses had started to appear in its governance and European powers were out to exploit these weaknesses to their own advantage. Britain, France, Germany and Russia until 1917 had agendas on how to reshape the region. The Sultan made the fatal mistake of supporting the German Empire against France and Britain in the First World War. The British and the French use the chaos in the region created by the war to undermine Ottoman rule and promise to the Arab populations and their Princes that large spoils would come their way if they revolted against their Turkish masters. British and French imperial policies were not devised for the benefit of local populations and events in the 20th century in Iraq, Syria and Jordan has shown us that Europe created a mess in this region with consequence we still live with today. Gertrude Bell in her recommendations thought this was the best course to follow and could not see what was going to happen once the Arabs wanted their independence from British rule. The borders of those countries, the design of their flags, the imposition of Monarchies, the framework for their governing bodies and the appointment of officials to posts, the marginalization of the Kurdish people and the division of their ancestral land between the new countries of Iraq, Syria and Jordan, the divide and conquer between Shia majority and Sunni minority in Iraq, all these recommendations made by Bell and endorsed by the British government led to serious problems in the years that would follow and Gertrude Bell bears the weight of those decisions.
She was heavily influenced by her upper class titled background, coming from a wealthy family, involved in the steel industry, educated at Oxford, schooled into world politics from an early age by her politician grandfather in the age of imperial expansion. Like many people of her time and class she did not see the Arab people as capable of governing themselves and needing the guidance of European rulers.
Gertrude Bell was the woman who would as an agent of the British government have enormous influence in the creation of new countries namely, Iraq, Jordan and Syria. Later France would through a secret treaty with Britain create Lebanon under the pretext of protecting Maronite Christians.
I was able to find the books written by Gertrude Bell during her time in the region and these books were widely read and very popular in shaping perceptions of the Arab people and the Bedouin tribes. I found them instructive and fascinating in understanding the unfolding of events. The world she visited and travelled through has changed a great deal in 120 years and it is sad to realize that it was a much gentler world. The European powers were there for mercantile reasons and oil monopolies also played into the equation.
Gertrude Margaret Lowthian Bell, CBE (1868-1926) was an English writer, traveller, political officer, administrator, and archaeologist who explored, mapped, and became highly influential to British imperial policy-making due to her knowledge and contacts, built up through extensive travels in Greater Syria, Mesopotamia, Asia Minor, and Arabia. Along with Colonel T.E.Lawrence, Bell helped support the Hashemite dynasties in what is today Jordan as well as in Iraq until its overthrow.
She played a major role in establishing and helping administer the modern state of Iraq, using her unique perspective from her travels and relations with tribal leaders throughout the Middle East. During her lifetime she was highly esteemed and trusted by British officials and exerted an immense amount of power. She has been described as “one of the few representatives of His Majesty King George V Government remembered by the Arabs with anything resembling affection” I would say with a certain generation of Arabs prior to 1970. In today’s world she has entered the world of mythical figures of a long gone era.
If you are interested her books and books on her life can be found easily on Amazon. Gertrude Bell committed suicide in 1926 by overdose of sleeping pills and is buried in the Anglican Cemetery in Baghdad.
Today is Canada Day, 1 July, 486 years old. The Canadian National Anthem first composed by Calixa Lavallée as a French-Canadian Patriotic Song in 4 couplets and performed on 24 June 1880. It Officially became the National Anthem of Canada by Act of Parliament in 1980, though everyone considered O Canada the National Anthem prior to that date. The english words to the Anthem are recent and have been modified several times to suit the taste of the times. The French version is the original, though only the short version is sung usually.
Some dates in the History of Canada,
1534 arrival of French Navigator Jacques Cartier in the Gaspé area and his first encounter with native people. He was looking for a route to China.
1608 Samuel de Champlain founding of Quebec City which becomes the Capital of the French Empire in North America.
1642 Paul de Chomedey De Maisonneuve founder of Montreal with Jeanne Mance who creates the first hospital, L’Hôtel Dieu de Montreal, still in operation today 378 years later.
1755, Deportation of thousands of Acadian people from the Maritime region of Canada by British forces.
1763, Treaty of Paris at the end of the Seven Years War in Europe, France ceding vast territories in North America to England.
1837-38 Rebellion against British rule and demands for elected responsible government by French Canadians.
1855 Creation of the Canadian Militia later known as the Canadian Army whose commander in Chief is H.M. the Queen.
1864-1867 Three Conferences between the British North American Colonies (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI and Ontario-Quebec) to establish an independent country. 1 July 1867 Proclamation of the Constitution and establishment of Canada as a unified country. Ottawa designated as the National Capital.
1875 Supreme Court of Canada is established by Act of Parliament.
1910 Creation by Royal Decree of the Royal Canadian Navy. Commander in Chief H.M. the Queen.
1914-1918 Canada participates in First World War as an independent nation and sign the Peace Treaty of Versailles in 1919.
1921, The discovery of insulin occurred in 1921 following the ideas of Canadian orthopedic surgeon Dr. Frederick G. Banting, the chemistry skills of his assistant Charles Best, and John MacLeod of the University of Toronto
1924 Creation of the Canadian Royal Air Force, Commander in Chief H.M. the Queen.
1931 Statute of Westminster, British Parliament affirmed Canadian autonomy and recognized the virtual independence.
1956 Canadian diplomat and Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson won the Nobel Peace Prize for “saving the world” with a UN peacekeeping force, during the Suez Canal Crisis in the Middle East.
1965, Royal Proclamation of the Canadian Maple Leaf Flag.
1976 Olympics Games are held in Montreal under the mandate of Mayor Jean Drapeau.
1980, O Canada by Act of Parliament becomes the Official Anthem of Canada.
1982 Proclamation by Constitutional Act of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
1984, Marc Garneau is the first Canadian Astronaut to go to space.
1999 The Ottawa Treaty signed by 133 countries banning Land mines, Canadian minister of Foreign Affairs Lloyd Axworthy launched the Ottawa Process, which led to the treaty ratification banning of Land mines in armed conflicts.
2005, The Civil Marriage Act was introduced by Prime Minister Paul Martin in Parliament on February 1, as Bill C-38. It was passed by the House of Commons on June 28, becoming law in Canada in July 2005. Canada is the fourth country in the World to legalize same-sex marriage.
This rendition of the National Anthem is performed by the Band of the Ceremonial Guard of the Canadian Armed Forces.
This painting was done for Prince Louis-Philippe, Duke of Orléans who is known to us as Philippe Egalité (1747-1793) he supported the Revolution in 1789, voted for the death of his cousin Louis XVI and was himself executed during the Terreur in 1793. A very modern presentation for the time.
The Duke of Orléans’s Gentlemen dressed in the frock coats of Saint-Cloud , original gouache painting by Louis Carrogis Carmontelle, 1770. The 6 gentilshommes are:
Monsieur le Chevalier de Gasq / Mr le Marquis de Perigny / Mr le Chevalier de St Mars / Mr le Chevalier d’Estrées / Mr le Baron de Tourrempré / Mr le Chevalier Desparts / Ils étaient tous Gentilshommes de Monseigneur le Duc d’Orléans grand -père, excepté Mr le Marquis de Perigny / ancien Président de la cour souveraine à Rouen, et qui par son esprit et son amabilité était de la société intime du Prince. Ils sont représentés sous l’habit que le Prince avait adopté pour la campagne.
This painting was with the family of the Comte de Paris, (Orléans Family) until 2015 when it was sold at Sotheby’s for 531,000 EUROS, a nice sum of money.
Telling the stories of the history of the port of Charlottetown and the marine heritage of Northumberland Strait on Canada's East Coast. Winner of the Heritage Award from the PEI Museum and Heritage Foundation and a Heritage Preservation Award from the City of Charlottetown