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Wikipedia:Today's featured article/August 2018

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August 1

The pleasure cruiser MV Darlwyne disappeared off the Cornish coast in south-west England on 31 July 1966, with two crew and twenty-nine passengers. Formerly a naval picket boat, the vessel had undergone considerable structural modifications which adversely affected its seaworthiness, before beginning service as an unlicensed passenger boat without radio, distress flares or other lifesaving equipment. On the fatal voyage, a group from the Greatwood guest house in Mylor were taken on a 30-mile trip to Fowey. The outward voyage was completed without mishap, but the weather had significantly deteriorated when the return trip began late that afternoon. When the vessel failed to return to Mylor the alarm was raised, and air and sea searches began on 1 August. Twelve bodies were eventually recovered, but no further traces of the vessel were found at the time. A subsequent Board of Trade enquiry exposed the laxity with which boat licensing regulations were being administered, and led to stricter enforcement. In 2016 divers found an anchor and other debris in the vicinity of Darlwyne's final sighting, which they stated were in all probability relics from the vessel. (Full article...)


August 2
Ian Smith in the 1950s

Ian Smith (1919–2007) was Prime Minister of Rhodesia (or Southern Rhodesia; today Zimbabwe) from 1964 to 1979. During the Second World War, he served as a Royal Air Force fighter pilot in the Middle East and Europe, suffering permanent facial and bodily wounds. In 1962 he helped form the all-white, firmly conservative Rhodesian Front, which called for independence without an immediate shift to black majority rule. He led the predominantly white government that unilaterally declared independence from the United Kingdom in 1965, after prolonged dispute. During Smith's premiership, the Bush War pitted the unrecognised administration's forces against communist-backed black nationalist guerrilla groups. His government endured in the face of United Nations economic sanctions with the assistance of South Africa and, until 1974, Portugal. Smith is still venerated by some, while critics describe an unrepentant racist whose policies and actions caused the deaths of thousands and contributed to Zimbabwe's later crises. (Full article...)


August 3
Beyoncé Knowles singing "Baby Boy" in Sweden, 2007

"Baby Boy" is a song by American singer Beyoncé (pictured) from her debut solo studio album Dangerously in Love. Featuring Jamaican rapper Sean Paul, the song was released by Columbia Records and Music World Entertainment as the second single from the album on August 3, 2003. Both artists co-wrote the song with Scott Storch, Robert Waller and Jay-Z; Beyoncé also co-produced the song. Containing a lyrical interpolation of "No Fear" by hip hop group O.G.C, "Baby Boy" is an R&B and dancehall song with reggae and Arabic music influences. The lyrics detail a woman's fantasies. The song topped the US Billboard Hot 100 for nine consecutive weeks, and was Beyoncé's longest-running solo number-one single until 2007, when it was surpassed by "Irreplaceable". It reached the top ten in many countries, and was certified platinum in Australia and the US. The song's music video was directed by Jake Nava and mostly shows Beyoncé dancing in various locations. "Baby Boy" has remained a staple of Beyoncé's concert set lists. (Full article...)


August 4
Celebration of victory in 2004

The history of Norwich City Football Club stretches back to 1902. Based in Norfolk, England, the association football club spent 15 years as a semi-professional team in the Southern League before admission to The Football League in 1920. For most of the next 50 years, Norwich City F.C. sat in Division Three (South), then the bottom tier. The club made the FA Cup semi-finals in 1959, and won its first major trophy, the League Cup, in 1962. Norwich finally reached the pinnacle of the league structure in 1972, with their first promotion to the top tier. Since then, they have acquired a reputation as a "yo-yo club", with 22 seasons in the top league and 15 in the second tier. During this period the club has a long list of achievements: claiming the League Cup in 1985, reaching the FA Cup semi-finals in 1989 and 1992, finishing fifth, fourth and third in the top division, and beating Bayern Munich in the UEFA Cup. (Full article...)


August 5
Both sides of the coin

The Huguenot-Walloon half dollar is a commemorative coin issued by the United States Bureau of the Mint in 1924. It marks the 300th anniversary of the voyage of the Nieuw Nederland. Many of the passengers were Protestants, Huguenots from France or Walloons from Belgium; they became early settlers of New York State and the surrounding areas. A bill to authorize the coin passed through Congress without opposition in 1923 and was signed by President Warren G. Harding. Sketches were prepared by Rev. John Baer Stoudt and converted to plaster models by the Mint's chief engraver, George T. Morgan. Of the 300,000 coins authorized by Congress, fewer than half were actually struck, and of these, 55,000 were returned to the Mint and released into circulation. The coin excited some controversy because of its sponsorship by a religious group. The coins are currently valued in the hundreds of dollars, depending on condition. (Full article...)


August 6
1902 lithograph of Wörth

SMS Wörth was one of four German pre-dreadnought battleships of the Brandenburg class, the first ocean-going battleships built by the Imperial German Navy. Laid down at the Germaniawerft dockyard in Kiel, the ship was launched on 6 August 1892 and commissioned into the fleet in October 1893. Like her sister ships, Wörth carried six heavy guns rather than the standard four. She was named for the Battle of Wörth fought in 1870 during the Franco-Prussian War. Wörth participated in the normal peacetime routine of training cruises and exercises. She took part in the German naval expedition to China in 1900 to suppress the Boxer Rebellion but saw little direct action, since the siege of Peking had already been lifted by the time the fleet arrived. Obsolete by the start of World War I, the battleship served as a coastal defense ship for the first two years of the war, but saw no action. Wörth was reduced to a barracks ship by 1916, and was scrapped in Danzig in 1919. (Full article...)

Part of the Battleships of Germany series, one of Wikipedia's featured topics.


August 7
Mistle thrush

The mistle thrush (Turdus viscivorus) is a bird common to much of Europe, Asia and North Africa. It is a year-round resident in much of its range, but northern and eastern populations migrate south for the winter, often in small flocks. It is a large thrush with pale grey-brown upperparts, a greyish-white chin and throat, and black spots on its pale yellow and off-white underparts. The sexes are similar in plumage, and its three subspecies show only minimal differences. The male's loud song is delivered even in wet and windy weather, earning the bird the old name of "stormcock". Found in open woods, parks, hedges and cultivated land, the mistle thrush feeds on a wide variety of invertebrates, seeds and berries, especially mistletoe, holly and yew fruits. It defends its open cup nest fearlessly against potential predators, sometimes including humans or cats. Following a large range expansion in the 18th and early 19th centuries, there has been a small decline in recent decades, perhaps due to changes in agricultural practices. (Full article...)


August 8
The Dawn of Love

The Dawn of Love is an oil painting by English artist William Etty, first exhibited in 1828. Loosely based on a passage from John Milton's 1634 Comus, it shows Venus leaning across to wake the sleeping Love by stroking his wings. It was very poorly received when first exhibited; the stylised Venus was thought unduly influenced by foreign artists such as Rubens as well as being overly voluptuous and unrealistically coloured, while the painting as a whole was considered tasteless and obscene. The Dawn of Love was omitted from the major 1849 retrospective exhibition of Etty's works, and its exhibition in Glasgow in 1899 drew complaints for its supposed obscenity. In 1889 it was bought by Merton Russell-Cotes, and has remained in the collection of the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum ever since. (Full article...)


August 9
Helicopter 66 pictured during the Apollo 10 recovery in 1969

Helicopter 66 (US Navy bureau no. 152711) was a Sikorsky Sea King used for the water recovery of many of NASA's Apollo astronauts, including those returning from the first manned moon landing in 1969. Space historian Dwayne A. Day has called it "one of the most famous, or at least most iconic, helicopters in history". Delivered to the navy in 1967, Helicopter 66 was in the inventory of U.S. Navy Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Four for the duration of its active life. One of its pilots, Donald S. Jones, went on to command the United States Third Fleet. It transported the Shah of Iran during his 1973 visit to the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk. Later re-numbered Helicopter 740, it crashed in the Pacific Ocean in 1975 during a training exercise, having logged more than 3,200 hours of service. It was the subject of a 1969 song by Manuela and was made into a die-cast model by Dinky Toys. Replicas of "Old 66" are on display at the USS Hornet Museum and the USS Midway Museum. (Full article...)


August 10
McCann as a captain in 1917–1918

Bill McCann (1892–1957) was a decorated soldier of World War I, a barrister, and a prominent figure in the military and ex-service community of South Australia during the interwar period. He enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force as a private in 1914, and rose through the ranks to be commissioned during the Gallipoli Campaign of 1915. In 1916–1918 he fought on the Western Front in France and Belgium, was wounded twice, and rose to the rank of major. For his gallantry on 10 August 1918 at Crépey Wood, he was made a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order. Returning home, McCann became a barrister, and was active in returned servicemen's organisations. He was state prices commissioner and deputy Commonwealth prices commissioner from 1938 to 1954. In recognition of his work with the ex-service community, McCann was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1935, and a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1956. (Full article...)


August 11
Longacre in 1855

James B. Longacre (August 11, 1794 – January 1, 1869) was the Chief Engraver of the United States Mint (1844–1869). He was born in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, becoming an apprentice in an engraving firm. He portrayed some of the leading men of his day in illustrations; support from some, such as John C. Calhoun, led to his federal appointment. In Longacre's first years, the Philadelphia Mint was dominated by Director Robert M. Patterson and Chief Coiner Franklin Peale, who resented Longacre's appointment. Peale and Patterson nearly got Longacre fired, but the chief engraver convinced Treasury Secretary William M. Meredith that he should be retained. In 1856, Longacre designed the Flying Eagle cent, but the coin proved difficult to strike, leading to the Indian Head cent three years later. He died in 1869, succeeded by William Barber. Longacre's coins are generally well-regarded today, though sometimes criticized for lack of artistic advancement. (Full article...)


August 12
Swamp fox banksia

Banksia telmatiaea, the swamp fox banksia, is a shrub that grows in marshes and swamps along the lower west coast of Australia. It is an upright bush up to 2 m (7 ft) tall, with narrow leaves and a pale brown flower spike, which can produce profuse quantities of nectar. The leaves have a green upper surface and white hairy undersurface. First collected in the 1840s, it was not published as a separate species until 1981; as with several other similar species it was previously included in B. sphaerocarpa (fox banksia). The shrub grows amongst scrubland in seasonally wet lowland areas of the coastal sandplain between Badgingarra and Serpentine in Western Australia. Reports suggest that it is pollinated by a variety of birds and small mammals, but not much is known of the ecology or conservation biology of this little-studied species. Like many members of the series Abietinae, it has not been considered to have much horticultural potential and is rarely cultivated. (Full article...)


August 13
NY 22 looking north into the Harlem Valley from Patterson

New York State Route 22 is a north–south state highway in eastern New York in the United States. It runs parallel to the state's eastern edge from the outskirts of New York City to the hamlet of Mooers in Clinton County. At 337 miles (542 km), it is the state's longest north–south route. The southernmost section of the road connected New York City to White Plains in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Route 22 in its modern form was established in 1930 as one of the principal routes from New York City to Canada. It is a two-lane road passing through small villages and hamlets, as well as the city of Plattsburgh in the north, lower Westchester County, and the heavily populated borough of The Bronx. The rural landscapes include picturesque reservoirs of the New York City watershed, dairy farms in the Taconic Mountains and the Berkshires, and the undeveloped, heavily forested Adirondack Park along the shores of Lake Champlain. An 86-mile (138 km) section from Fort Ann to Keeseville is part of the Lakes to Locks Passage, an All-American Road. (Full article...)


August 14
Bobby Eaton

Bobby Eaton (born August 14, 1958) is a retired American professional wrestler who made his debut in 1976. He worked mainly in tag teams, including The Midnight Express. Under the management of Jim Cornette, Eaton originally teamed with Dennis Condrey and, later on, with Stan Lane. He has also partnered with Koko B. Ware, Steve Keirn, and Steven Regal. Eaton trained under Tojo Yamamoto to become a professional wrestler. He wrestled for long stints with various promotions: Mid-America Wrestling, Continental Wrestling Association, Mid-South Wrestling, World Class Championship Wrestling, Jim Crockett Promotions, World Championship Wrestling, and Smoky Mountain Wrestling. He has also made brief guest appearances for Extreme Championship Wrestling and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, in addition to appearances for a considerable number of independent wrestling promotions. He retired in 2015 after nearly 40 years in the ring. (Full article...)


August 15
Portrayal of Stephen I on the Hungarian coronation pall from 1031

Stephen I (c. 975 – 15 August 1038) was the last Grand Prince of the Hungarians and the first King of Hungary (from 1000 or 1001 until his death). The first member of his family to become a devout Christian, he married Gisela of Bavaria, a scion of the imperial Ottonian dynasty. After succeeding his father in 997, Stephen had to defend the throne, with aid from foreign knights, against his relative Koppány. In a series of wars against semi-independent tribes and chieftains—including the Black Hungarians and his uncle, Gyula the Younger—Stephen unified the Carpathian Basin. He established at least one archbishopric, six bishoprics and three Benedictine monasteries, all independent of the archbishops of the Holy Roman Empire. Hungary enjoyed lasting peace during his reign, and became a preferred route for pilgrims and merchants traveling between Western Europe and the Holy Land or Constantinople. Stephen was canonized by Pope Gregory VII in 1083. In Hungary, his feast day (celebrated on 20 August) is a public holiday commemorating the foundation of the state. (Full article...)


August 16
Eva Perón (1919–1952)
Eva Perón

Evita is a 1996 American musical drama film based on the 1976 concept album of the same name produced by Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber, which also inspired a 1978 musical. The film depicts the life of Eva Perón (pictured), detailing her beginnings, rise to fame, political career and death at the age of 33. Directed by Alan Parker, and written by Parker and Oliver Stone, Evita stars Madonna as Eva, Jonathan Pryce as Eva's husband, Juan Perón, and Antonio Banderas as Ché, an everyman who acts as the film's narrator. After a nationwide release in January 1997, the film grossed over $141 million worldwide. Reviewers praised Madonna's performance, the music, costume designs and cinematography, while criticism was aimed at the pacing and direction. The film earned a number of accolades, including the Academy Award for Best Original Song ("You Must Love Me"), and three Golden Globe Awards, for Best Picture – Comedy or Musical, Best Original Song and Best Actress – Comedy or Musical. (Full article...)


August 17
Golden jackal at Upper Bhavani, India

The golden jackal (Canis aureus) is a wolf-like canid native to Southeast Europe, Southwest Asia, South Asia, and regions of Southeast Asia. Compared with the Arabian wolf, which is the smallest of the gray wolves (Canis lupus), the jackal is smaller and possesses shorter legs, a shorter tail, a more elongated torso, a less-prominent forehead, and a narrower and more pointed muzzle. The coat can vary from a pale creamy yellow in summer to a dark tawny beige in winter. The golden jackal has a widespread distribution and high density in areas with plenty of available food and optimum shelter. The ancestor of the golden jackal is believed to be the extinct Arno river dog that lived in Mediterranean Europe 1.9 million years ago. It is more closely related to the gray wolf, coyote, African golden wolf, and Ethiopian wolf than it is to the African black-backed or side-striped jackals. The golden jackal is expanding beyond its native grounds in Southeast Europe into Central Europe, occupying areas where there are few or no wolves. (Full article...)


August 18
Bret 08-22-1999 1431Z.png

Hurricane Bret was the first of five Category 4 hurricanes in the 1999 Atlantic hurricane season and the first tropical cyclone since Hurricane Jerry in 1989 to make landfall in Texas at hurricane intensity. After forming from a tropical wave on August 18, Bret began to track northward, and on August 21 it underwent rapid intensification. It attained its peak intensity with winds of 145 mph (230 km/h) and a barometric pressure of 944 mbar (hPa; 27.88 inHg). Bret turned northwestward on August 22 and weakened to a Category 3 hurricane, making landfall on Padre Island, Texas. It caused relatively little damage in comparison to its intensity, but seven people died from the storm, four in Texas and three in Mexico. Most of the deaths were due to car accidents caused by slippery roads. Heavy rains produced by Bret peaked at 13.18 inches (335 mm) in Texas and were estimated at over 14 inches (360 mm) in Mexico. Roughly 150 people were left homeless after their homes were damaged or destroyed. (Full article...)


August 19
Speculative restoration based on relatives

Oxalaia, a spinosaurid dinosaur, lived in what is now Brazil during the Late Cretaceous, sometime between 93.9 and 100.5 million years ago. The genus name comes from Oxalá, an African deity. Oxalaia's only known fossils, a partial snout and upper jaw bone, were found in 1999 in the Alcântara Formation. At an estimated 12 to 14 metres (39 to 46 feet) in length, it is the largest carnivorous dinosaur discovered from Brazilian fossils. The African genus Spinosaurus was its closest relative. Oxalaia bore two replacement teeth in each socket (similarly to sharks) and a very ornamented secondary palate, features which are not known in other theropod or spinosaurid dinosaurs. Its habitat was tropical and heavily forested, surrounded by dry regions. Since Oxalaia's skull and teeth resembled those of modern crocodilians, it may have largely hunted fish. Fossil evidence suggests spinosaurids also occasionally preyed on other animals such as small dinosaurs and pterosaurs. (Full article...)


August 20
Amy Adams in 2016

Amy Adams (born August 20, 1974) is an American actress. She made her feature film debut with a supporting part in the 1999 satire Drop Dead Gorgeous, and her first major role was in Steven Spielberg's 2002 biopic Catch Me If You Can. After a breakthrough role as a loquacious pregnant woman in Junebug (2005), her first major success as a leading lady was in the 2007 musical Enchanted, in which she played a cheerful Disney Princess. She went on to play naive, optimistic women in a series of films. She played stronger female parts to positive reviews in The Fighter (2010) and The Master (2012), and in 2013 she began portraying Lois Lane in superhero films set in the DC Extended Universe. She won two consecutive Golden Globe Awards for playing a seductive con artist in American Hustle (2013) and Margaret Keane in Big Eyes (2014). Further acclaim came for playing a linguist in the science fiction film Arrival (2016) and a self-harming reporter in the miniseries Sharp Objects (2018). (Full article...)

Part of the Amy Adams series, one of Wikipedia's featured topics.


August 21
Bloc Party in 2008
Bloc Party in 2008

Intimacy is the third studio album by British indie rock band Bloc Party (pictured). It was recorded in London and Kent during 2008 and was produced by Jacknife Lee and Paul Epworth. The album became available for purchase on the band's website as a digital download on 21 August 2008. The record was released in compact disc form in October 2008, with Wichita Recordings as the primary label. It peaked at number 8 on the UK Albums Chart and entered the Billboard 200 in the United States at number 18. The album incorporates electronic elements and unconventional musical arrangements. As the record's title suggests, its tracks are about personal relationships, and are loosely based on one of frontman Kele Okereke's breakups in 2007. Three songs were released as singles: "Mercury", "Talons", and "One Month Off"; the first two tracks entered the UK Top 40. Intimacy was generally well received by critics. Reviewers focused on its rushed release and central theme, considering them either bold steps or poor choices. (Full article...)

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August 22
Debussy in 1908

Claude Debussy (22 August 1862 – 25 March 1918) was a French composer. He was seen, during his lifetime and afterwards, as the first Impressionist composer, although he vigorously rejected the term. He was among the most influential composers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Born to a family of modest means, he was admitted at the age of 10 to France's leading music college, the Conservatoire de Paris. He originally studied the piano, but found his vocation in innovative composition, despite the disapproval of the Conservatoire's conservative professors. He took many years to develop his mature style, and was nearly 40 before achieving international fame in 1902 with the only opera he completed, Pelléas et Mélisande. Debussy developed his own style in the use of harmony and orchestral colouring. His works have strongly influenced a wide range of composers, including Béla Bartók, Olivier Messiaen, George Benjamin and the jazz pianist and composer Bill Evans. (Full article...)


August 23
Playbill of the Broadway production

The Bat is a three-act comedy-mystery play by Mary Roberts Rinehart and Avery Hopwood that was first produced by Lincoln Wagenhals and Collin Kemper. The play opened on Broadway on August 23, 1920. At a rented summer home, Cornelia Van Gorder and guests search for stolen money while being stalked by a masked criminal known as "the Bat". The play originated as an adaptation of Rinehart's 1908 mystery novel The Circular Staircase. It was a critical and commercial success, running for 867 performances in New York and 327 in London, with tours by several road companies. It was revived twice on Broadway, in 1937 and 1953. It had several adaptations, including a 1926 novelization credited to Rinehart and Hopwood but ghostwritten by Stephen Vincent Benét. Three film adaptations were produced: The Bat (1926), The Bat Whispers (1930), and The Bat (1959). The play and its adaptations inspired other comedy-mysteries with similar settings, and influenced the creation of the comic-book superhero Batman. (Full article...)


August 24

Phantasmagoria is a point-and-click adventure game designed by Roberta Williams for MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows. First released in North America, by Sierra On-Line on August 24, 1995, it tells the story of Adrienne Delaney (Victoria Morsell), a writer who moves into a remote mansion and finds herself terrorized by supernatural forces. Made at the peak of popularity for interactive movie games, Phantasmagoria features live-action footage. It was based on Williams's 550-page script, about four times the length of an average Hollywood screenplay, and cost $4.5 million to develop. Peter Maris directed a cast of 25 actors, all performing in front of a blue screen. The musical score includes neo-Gregorian chant performed by a 135-voice choir. Phantasmagoria became one of the best-selling games of 1995 globally. It received mixed reviews, earning praise for its graphics and suspenseful tone, but criticism for its slow pacing and easy puzzles. The game drew controversy, particularly due to a rape scene. Some retailers declined to carry it, religious organizations and politicians condemned it, and it was refused classification altogether in Australia. (Full article...)


August 25
Arthur C. Clarke in 2005
Arthur C. Clarke

Tales of Wonder was a British science fiction magazine launched in 1937 with Walter Gillings as editor, published by a subsidiary of William Heinemann. Gillings was able to attract some good material, and included many reprints from US science fiction magazines. Arthur C. Clarke (pictured) made his first professional sale to Tales of Wonder, with two science articles. Gillings also published William F. Temple's first story, some early material by John Wyndham, and "The Prr-r-eet" by Eric Frank Russell. American writers who appeared in the magazine included Murray Leinster, Jack Williamson, Lloyd Arthur Eshbach, and S. P. Meek. With the advent of World War II, paper shortages and Gillings's call-up into the army made it increasingly difficult to continue, and the sixteenth issue, dated Spring 1942, was the last. Tales of Wonder was the first British science fiction magazine aimed at an adult market, and its success made it apparent that a British science fiction magazine could survive. (Full article...)


August 26
The composer

Ralph Vaughan Williams (12 October 1872 – 26 August 1958) was an English composer. His works include operas, ballets, chamber music, secular and religious vocal pieces and orchestral compositions, including nine symphonies, written over 60 years. Strongly influenced by Tudor music and English folk-song, his work marked a decisive break in British music from its German-dominated style of the 19th century. He was musically a late developer, not finding his true voice until his late 30s, when his studies with the French composer Maurice Ravel helped him clarify the textures of his music. His symphonies express a wide range of moods: from stormy and impassioned to tranquil, from mysterious to exuberant. His other concert works include Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis (1910) and The Lark Ascending (1914). His ballet Job: A Masque for Dancing (1930) has been frequently staged. He insisted on the traditional English pronunciation of his first name, "Rafe". (Full article...)


August 27
Trey Parker and Matt Stone in 2007
Trey Parker and Matt Stone

"Volcano" is the second episode of the animated television series South Park. It originally aired on Comedy Central in the United States in August 1997. In the episode, Stan, Kyle, Cartman and Kenny go on a hunting trip with Stan's uncle Jimbo and his war buddy Ned, unaware that a nearby volcano is about to erupt. Written by series co-creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone (pictured), the episode was inspired by the 1997 disaster films Volcano and Dante's Peak, both of which Parker and Stone strongly disliked. "Volcano" received generally positive reviews and was nominated for a 1997 Environmental Media Award. Over one million viewers watched the original broadcast. The episode marked the first of two appearances for Scuzzlebutt, who became a popular minor character and appeared in the video games South Park 10: The Game and South Park Rally. The episode parodied the Duck and Cover films from the 1950s and 1960s that advised people to hide under tables in the event of a nuclear attack. (Full article...)


August 28
Illustration of a pair by John Gerrard Keulemans, 1888

The Sind sparrow (Passer pyrrhonotus) is a bird of the sparrow family, Passeridae, found around the Indus valley region in South Asia. Very similar to the house sparrow, it is smaller and has distinguishing plumage features. This species was long thought to be very closely related to the house sparrow, but its closest evolutionary affinities may lie elsewhere. The male has brighter plumage than female and young birds; it has black markings, a grey crown, and a chestnut stripe running down its head behind the eye. The female has a darker head than other sparrow species do. Its main vocalisations are soft chirping calls that are extended into longer songs. Within its Indus valley breeding range in Pakistan and western India, the Sind sparrow is patchily distributed in riverine and wetland habitats with thorny scrub and tall grass. During the non-breeding season, some birds migrate into western Pakistan and the extreme east of Iran. This fairly common species has been expanding its range. (Full article...)


August 29
Typhoon Nabi at peak intensity on September 2

Typhoon Nabi was a powerful typhoon that struck southwestern Japan in September 2005. The 14th named storm of the 2005 Pacific typhoon season, Nabi formed on August 29 to the east of the Northern Mariana Islands. On September 1, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center upgraded the storm to super typhoon status, equivalent to a Category 5 hurricane on the Saffir–Simpson scale. The Japan Meteorological Agency estimated peak ten-minute winds of 175 km/h (110 mph) on September 2. The typhoon first affected the Northern Marianas, damaging or destroying 114 homes. It weakened while curving to the north, striking the Japanese island of Kyushu on September 6. The western fringe of the storm brushed South Korea, where it killed six people and caused US$115.4 million in damage. The storm then passed over Hokkaido before becoming extratropical on September 8. Across Japan, Nabi killed 29 people and caused ¥94.9 billion (US$854 million) in damage. Nabi's name was retired the following year. (Full article...)


August 30
US 45 entering Paulding

In Michigan, US Highway 45 (US 45) runs through the Upper Peninsula, from the Wisconsin border near Watersmeet north to Ontonagon. US 45 extends south from Michigan to Mobile, Alabama, on the Gulf Coast. The Michigan segment, part of the state trunkline highway system maintained by the Michigan Department of Transportation, runs for approximately 55 miles (89 km) through the Ottawa National Forest, parallel to the Ontonagon River. In the 1930s, when the highway was extended into Michigan, it replaced sections of M-26 and M-35. An 8-mile (13 km) segment was significantly reconstructed in the late 1950s, and an alignment change in the 1970s moved the routing of US 45 near Rockland before it was reversed soon afterwards. A segment of roadway that formerly carried US 45 is the site of the Paulding Light, an intermittent reflection whose origins were scientifically described in 2010. (Full article...)

Part of the U.S. Highways in Michigan series, one of Wikipedia's featured topics.


August 31
David Longhurst Stand in 2009

Bootham Crescent is a sports stadium, the home of the association football club York City and rugby league club York City Knights, in York, North Yorkshire, England. The ground opened on 31 August 1932 with a capacity of 8,256. Improvements added in the early 1980s include a gymnasium, a lounge for officials, and offices. Bootham Crescent hosted football in the Football League from 1932 to 2004 and from 2012 to 2016. It includes four stands: the Main Stand, the Popular Stand, the Grosvenor Road End and the David Longhurst Stand, named after a player who died at the ground in 1990. The ground has hosted a concert, a grand firework display, beer festivals, and American football and rugby league matches. The record attendance of 28,123 was set in March 1938, for an FA Cup match against Huddersfield Town. The teams are expected to move to a community stadium at Monks Cross in Huntington in mid-2019, and the Bootham Crescent site will then be used for housing. (Full article...)

Part of the York City F.C. series, one of Wikipedia's featured topics.