This Day in History is DUE’s daily dose of trivia for all the history buffs out there. So sit back and take a ride of all the fascinating things that happened on 7th May!!!!
People are trapped in history and history is trapped in people, and hence, every day has been a significant one in the foibles of history. Now, let’s take a tour of “This Day in History – 7th May”.
1861: ‘Bard of Bengal’ Rabindranath Tagore is born
Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore was born today in Kolkata, India. Author of the ‘profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse’ of Gitanjali, he became the first non-European as well as the first lyricist to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913. He influenced the introduction of Indian culture to the West and vice versa. Gitanjali (Song Offerings), Gora (Fair-Faced) and Ghare-Baire (The Home and the World) are his best-known works. He has also composed the national anthems of two nations: India’s ‘Jana Gana Mana’ and Bangladesh’s ‘Amar Shonar Bangla’.
1902: Mount Pelée begins to erupt, burying the Caribbean city
Martinique’s Mount Pelée began the deadliest volcanic eruption of the 20th century, wiping the city Saint Pierre off the map. Caught up amid an important election, residents of Saint Pierre failed to heed the mountain’s warnings and evacuate. On May 7, activity on the volcano increased dramatically and overnight, a cloud of gas with a temperature of more than 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit spilt out of the mountain. This blast became an avalanche of boiling ash in the morning. The eruption buried the Paris of the Caribbean Saint Pierre within minutes, with only two reported survivors.
1960: Leonid Brezhnev becomes President of the USSR
Leonid Brezhnev was selected as Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet—the Soviet equivalent to the presidency. He was a trusted protégé of Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev who would go on to take control of the Soviet Union in 1964. The position allowed Brezhnev to come into contact with numerous foreign dignitaries and visitors as a representative of the Soviet government. In 1964, Khrushchev was removed from power and Brezhnev was named new first secretary. Brezhnev held that post for 18 years until his death in 1982.
1994: Edvard Munch’s painting ‘The Scream’ recovered after theft
‘The Scream’ by Norwegian Expressionist Edvard Munch was stolen in only 50 seconds from the National Gallery during a break-in on February 12. It was the opening day of the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer. The thieves even left a note saying ‘Thank you for the bad security!‘ Police recovered the fragile painting undamaged at a hotel in Asgardstrand, about 40 miles south of Oslo.
1998: Daimler-Benz announces purchase of Chrysler Corp.
The German automobile company Daimler-Benz–maker of the world-famous luxury car brand Mercedes-Benz–announced a $36 billion merger with the United States-based Chrysler Corporation. This was the biggest acquisition by a foreign buyer of any U.S. company in history. This gave birth to the new company DaimlerChrysler AG. But things didn’t work out too well. Under pressure from the Obama administration, Chrysler filed for bankruptcy protection in April 2009 and entered into a partnership with the Italian automaker Fiat. In 2014, the two companies became Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.
2017: Baahubali 2 becomes the highest-grossing Indian box office film
‘Baahubali 2: The Conclusion’ became the highest-grossing Indian box office film to cross over $131 million worldwide, beating the previous record-holder PK ($123 million). Hauling $13.1 million in the US alone, it also surpassed the earnings of Dangal in the territory. Directed by SS Rajamouli, Baahubali 2 is the sequel to the 2015 epic Baahubali: The Beginning. Planned as a two-part epic, this was the most expensive Indian production ever with an estimated budget of $40 million. Produced by Shobu Yarlagadda’s Arka Mediaworks the duology features top South Indian stars Prabhas, Rana Daggubati, Tamannaah and Anushka Shetty.