This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.
Find the past “On This Day in History” here.
March 22 is the 81st day of the year (82nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 284 days remaining until the end of the year.
The Emerald Buddha is the palladium of the Kingdom of Thailand, a figurine of the sitting Buddha, made of green jadeite (rather than emerald), clothed in gold, and about 45 cm tall. It is kept in the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew) on the grounds of the Grand Palace in Bangkok.
According to the legend, the Emerald Buddha was created in India in 43 BC by Nagasena in the city of Pataliputra (today’s Patna). The legends state that after remaining in Pataliputra for three hundred years, it was taken to Sri Lanka to save it from a civil war. In 457, King Anuruth of Burma sent a mission to Ceylon to ask for Buddhist scriptures and the Emerald Buddha, in order to support Buddhism in his country. These requests were granted, but the ship lost its way in a storm during the return voyage and landed in Cambodia. When the Thais captured Angkor Wat in 1432 (following the ravage of the bubonic plague), the Emerald Buddha was taken to Ayutthaya, Kamphaeng Phet, Laos and finally Chiang Rai, where the ruler of the city hid it. Cambodian historians recorded capture of the Buddha statue in their famous Preah Ko Preah Keo legend. However, some art historians describe the Emerald Buddha as belonging to the Chiang Saen Style of the 15th Century AD, which would mean it is actually of Lannathai origin.
Historical sources indicate that the statue surfaced in northern Thailand in the Lannathai kingdom in 1434. One account of its discovery tells that lightning struck a pagoda in a temple in Chiang Rai, after which, something became visible beneath the stucco. The Buddha was dug out, and the people believed the figurine to be made of emerald, hence its name. King Sam Fang Kaen of Lannathai wanted it in his capital, Chiang Mai, but the elephant carrying it insisted, on three separate occasions, on going instead to Lampang. This was taken as a divine sign and the Emerald Buddha stayed in Lampang until 1468, when it was finally moved to Chiang Mai, where it was kept at Wat Chedi Luang.
The Emerald Buddha remained in Chiang Mai until 1552, when it was taken to Luang Prabang, then the capital of the Lao kingdom of Lan Xang. Some years earlier, the crown prince of Lan Xang, Setthathirath, had been invited to occupy the vacant throne of Lannathai. However, Prince Setthathirath also became king of Lan Xang when his father, Photisarath, died. He returned home, taking the revered Buddha figure with him. In 1564, King Setthathirath moved it to his new capital at Vientiane.
In 1779, the Thai General Chao Phraya Chakri put down an insurrection, captured Vientiane and returned the Emerald Buddha to Siam, taking it with him to Thonburi. After he became King Rama I of Thailand, he moved the Emerald Buddha with great ceremony to its current home in Wat Phra Kaew on March 22, 1784. It is now kept in the main building of the temple, the Ubosoth.
238 – Gordian I and his son Gordian II are proclaimed Roman Emperors.
1621 – The Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony sign a peace treaty with Massasoit of the Wampanoags.
1622 – Jamestown massacre: Algonquian Indians kill 347 English settlers around Jamestown, Virginia, a third of the colony’s population.
1630 – The Massachusetts Bay Colony outlaws the possession of cards, dice, and gaming tables.
1638 – Anne Hutchinson is expelled from Massachusetts Bay Colony for religious dissent.
1739 – Nadir Shah occupies Delhi in India and sacks the city, stealing the jewels of the Peacock Throne.
1765 – The British Parliament passes the Stamp Act that introduces a tax to be levied directly on its American colonies.
1784 – The Emerald Buddha is moved with great ceremony to its current place in Wat Phra Kaew, Thailand.
1809 – Charles XIII succeeds Gustav IV Adolf to the Swedish throne.
1829 – The three protecting powers (Britain, France and Russia) establish the borders of Greece.
1849 – The Austrians defeat the Piedmontese at the Battle of Novara.
1871 – In North Carolina, William Woods Holden becomes the first governor of a U.S. state to be removed from office by impeachment.
1873 – A law is approved by the Spanish National Assembly in Puerto Rico to abolish slavery.
1894 – The first playoff game for the Stanley Cup starts.
1906 – First Anglo-French rugby union match at Parc des Princes in Paris
1916 – The last Emperor of China, Yuan Shikai, abdicates the throne and the Republic of China is restored.
1923 – The first radio broadcast of ice hockey is made by Foster Hewitt.
1939 – World War II: Germany takes Memel from Lithuania.
1942 – World War II: In the Mediterranean Sea, the Royal Navy confronts Italy’s Regia Marina in the Second Battle of Sirte.
1943 – World War II: the entire population of Khatyn in Belarus is burnt alive by German occupation forces.
1945 – The Arab League is founded when a charter is adopted in Cairo, Egypt.
1954 – Closed since 1939, the London bullion market reopens.
1960 – Arthur Leonard Schawlow and Charles Hard Townes receive the first patent for a laser
1972 – The United States Congress sent the Equal Rights Amendment to the states for ratification.
1975 – A fire at the Browns Ferry Nuclear Power Plant in Decatur, Alabama causes a dangerous reduction in cooling water levels.
1978 – Karl Wallenda of The Flying Wallendas dies after falling off a tight-rope between two hotels in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
1982 – NASA’s Space Shuttle Columbia, is launched from the Kennedy Space Center on its third mission, STS-3.
1984 – Teachers at the McMartin preschool in Manhattan Beach, California are charged with satanic ritual abuse of the children in the school. The charges are later dropped as completely unfounded.
1989 – Clint Malarchuk of the Buffalo Sabres suffers a near-fatal injury when another player accidentally slits his throat.
1992 – USAir Flight 405 crashes shortly after liftoff from New York City’s LaGuardia Airport, leading to a number of studies into the effect that ice has on aircraft.
1993 – The Intel Corporation ships the first Pentium chips (80586), featuring a 60 MHz clock speed, 100+ MIPS, and a 64 bit data path.
1995 – Cosmonaut Valeriy Polyakov returns after setting a record for 438 days in space.
1997 – Tara Lipinski, age 14 years and 10 months, becomes the youngest champion women’s World Figure Skating Champion.
1997 – The Comet Hale-Bopp has its closest approach to Earth.
2004 – Ahmed Yassin, co-founder and leader of the Palestinian Sunni Islamist group Hamas, two bodyguards, and nine civilian bystanders are killed in the Gaza Strip when hit by Israeli Air Force AH-64 Apache fired Hellfire missiles.
2006 – ETA, the armed Basque separatist group, declares a permanent ceasefire.
2006 – Three Christian Peacemaker Team hostages are freed by British forces in Baghdad after 118 days of captivity and the death of their colleague, American Tom Fox.
2009 – Mount Redoubt, a volcano in Alaska begins erupting after a prolonged period of unrest.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M… Holidays and observances]
* Christian Feast Day:
o Basil of Ancyra (Roman Catholic Church)
* Earliest day on which Earth Hour can fall, while March 28 is the latest; celebrated on the last Saturday in March. (International)
* Earliest day on which Easter Sunday can fall, while April 25 is the latest. (Christianity)
* Emancipation Day or Dia de la Abolicion de la Esclavitud (Puerto Rico)
* World Day for Water (International)