|England||Henry VI (1421-71)||1422||1461|
|Scotland||James II "Fiery Face" (1430-60)||1437||Aug. 23, 1460|
|France||Charles VII the Victorious (1403-61)||1422||July 22, 1461|
|Germany||HRE Frederick III of Hapsburg (1415-93)||1440||Aug. 19, 1493|
|Papacy||Pope Eugene IV (1388-1447)||1431||Feb. 23, 1447|
|Ottoman Empire||Sultan Murad II (1403-51)||1421||1451|
1440 On Feb. 22 HRE Albert II's posth. son Ladislaus (Ladislas) (Laszlo) V Posthumous (1440-57), heir to the headship of the House of Hapsburg along with Bohemia, Hungary, and Austria is born in Komarom, Hungary (in modern-day Slovakia), and his mother Elisabeth of Bohemia has him crowned in Szekesfehervar, then makes the mistake of placing him under the guardianship of his 2nd cousin Archduke Frederick V of Styria and Carinthia (Inner Austria), later (1452) known as HRE Frederick III of Hapsburg (1415-93), who imprisons him in Orth Castle and assumes rule of Lower Austria, keeping the tyke out of Bohemia for many years while he plots to grab it all; a handsome amateur astrologer, botanist, and mineralogist, Frederick III is elected king of Germany (until 1493) to succeed Albert II as Friedrich IV; too bad, as a self-proclaimed scientist he is above mundane politics, skips sessions of the Diet, and lets his empire fend for itself against the Turks, later forcing Charles the Bold of Burgundy to marry his daughter Mary of Burgundy to his son Maximilian I (Kaiser Max), causing the Hapsburg star to rise, and giving rise to his motto "Let others wage wars, but you, happy Austria, shall marry" - ask Ahnuld about it? On Mar. 20 Lithuanian grand duke (since 1432) Sigismund Kestutaitis (b. 1351) is killed by supporters of Svitrigaila, allowing him to return to rule Podolia and Volhynia (until 1452). In Mar. Isidore of Kiev pub. an encyclical in Buda calling on all Russian bishops to accept the new union with the Roman Catholic Church struck in the 1439 Councils of Ferrara and Florence, but at the command of grand duke (since 1425) Vasilii II six Russian bishops hold a synod and despose Isidore, after which he is imprisoned, escaping in Sept. 1443 and ending up in Rome. On June 29 (Wed.) the papal army led by Florence under Francesco Sforza defeats Niccolo Piccinino of Milan in the Battle of Anghiari in Tuscany; in 1504-5 Leonardo da Vinci paints The Battle of Anghiari, which later becomes "the Lost Leonardo", part of which is preserved in Peter Paul Rubens' 1603 "The Battle of the Standard", copied from a 1558 engraving by Lorenzo Zacchia. In Sept. 24-y.-o. Baron Gilles de Rais (Retz) (Bluebeard) (b. 1404) of Brittany, marshal of France, one-time brother-in-arms of Joan of Arc, and 2nd richest man in France is arrested and charged with sorcery, sacrilege, and ritual murder of 140 young children, with accomplice Francesco Prelati (b. 1415), an Italian magician, in order to gain magical power over his enemies; on Oct. 21 he confesses ("Have I not already told you enough to put 10,000 men to death?"), and is hanged in late Oct.; his castles go to Duke John of Brittany, but his family suffers no disgrace since he confessed, leading some to believe that John was behind the accusations and he confessed to save them? White is right in Scotland too? The original Fat Bastard? On Nov. 24 after extensive plotting by the Crichton-Livingston clique, the Black Dinner in Edinburgh Castle sees the new head of the Black Douglases, 16-y.-o. William Douglas, 6th Earl of Douglas (b. 1424) and his younger brother David Douglas, young sons of the late Scottish lt.-gen. Archibald Douglas, 5th Earl of Douglas (1390-1439), along with Sir Malcolm Fleming of Cumbernauld summarily beheaded on trumped-up charges in the presence of James II after the head of a black bull is brought to the table; James II takes the lordships of Annandale and Bothwell for himself, giving Bothwell Castle in Lanarkshire, and gives the Black Douglas estates to their morbidly obese great-uncle (2nd son of Archibald Douglas, 3rd Earl of Douglas) James "the Gross" Douglas, 1st Earl of Avondale (1371-1443) of Balvenie, who becomes the lucky 7th earl of Douglas, and was in complicity all along, ending the power of the Black Douglases; Gross' sister Margaret Douglas gets the lordship of Galloway. Polish king (since 1434) Vladislaus (Wladyslaw) III (1424-44) becomes king of Hungary and Croatia (until 1444) after winning the 2-year civil war (begun 1438) with Queen Elisabeth with the help of Pope Eugene IV in return for promising a Crusade against the Ottomans, which causes him to neglect his duties as king of Poland; his younger brother Casimir IV Jagiellon becomes grand duke of Lithuania (until 1492). Christopher of Bavaria is crowned Christopher III of Denmark (1416-48), followed by king of Sweden next year, and king of Norway in 1442 (until 1448), beginning a long balance of power struggle between the crown and nobility (ends 1660). The Ottomans under Sultan Murad II unsucessfully siege Belgrade. Duke Charles of Orleans, an English prisoner since Agincourt in 1415 is finally ransomed, and goes on to produce a son who becomes Louis XII. The Praguerie, a revolt of feudal lords against Charles VII of France is supported by Philip III the Bold and the dauphin (later Louis XI); it is quickly suppressed, and the king is lenient towards the nobles; Louis XI is pardoned by his father. Montezuma (Moctezuma) I (1397-1469) succeeds his brother Itzcoatl as ruler of the Aztecs in Tenochtitlan, going on to extend his empire to the Pacific and the Gulf of Mexico, build flood dams, beautify the capital of Tenochtitlan, and promulgate a severe legal code along with improved religious ceremonies. Richard Plantagenet, duke of York returns to France as regent again (until 1445); John Beaufort, 1st duke of Somerset (b. 1403), who wanted it so bad it hurts returns to England and commits suicide in 1444. In this decade Sir Thomas Malory sits in Parliament as a knight. Eton College (School) (King's College of Our Lady of Eton Beside Windsor) is founded in Eaton, near, Windsor, Buckinghamshire, England by Henry VI as a charity school to give free education to 70 boys to groom them for King's College (College of St. Nicholas), which he founds next year in Cambridge, with special privileges exempting it from the jurisdiction of Cambridge U., the archbishop of Canterbury, and the bishop of Ely (until 1857); King's College goes on to become "the chief nurse of England's statesmen", graduating 18 British PMs; Eton boys end up wearing a distinctive formal dress with waist-length jacket and top hat - I love a boy in a short skirt and a waist-length jacket? The hereditary rank of viscount (below prince, duke, marquess, and earl, but above baron) (prince, duke, marquis, earl, viscount, baron = Pilgrim, do Muslims ever visit Boston?) is created in England; John Beaumont (1409-60) becomes the first recorded viscount in England after being created by Henry VI in 1432. The surname Galway first appears. The word "wizard" first appears in England, meaning wise person. Sports: King James II of Scotland prohibits the playing of the game of Golf in Mar. because he thinks it's too popular? Architecture: The Gothic Ca' d'Oro palace in Venice on the Grand Canal is built, going on to house the Franchetti painting collection incl. works by Titian, Tintoretto, Tiepolo et al. The Franciscan Muckross Abbey of Killarney in SW Ireland in County Kerry between Lough Leane and Lough Torc is built. Inventions: Laurens Janszoon Koster of Haarlem, Netherlands invents the first Movable Type Printing. Playing cards, long painted by hand begin to be colored by stencil in Europe; French playing cards name court cards for famous people from history or mythology, incl. kings (spades = King David, hearts = Charlemagne, diamonds = Julius Caesar, clubs = Alexander the Great). Nonfiction: Juan Rodriguez de la Camara (1390-1450), Cadira de Honor; moralistic treatise. Nicholas of Cusa (1401-64), On Learned Ignorance; it is possible to know God with the divine human mind but only via you know what? Galfridus Grammaticus, Promptorium Parvulorum; the first English-Latin dictionary, containing Latin definitions of English words, based on the 1400 "Medulla Grammatica"; compiled by a Dominican monk in Norfolk, England, and not printed until 1499 by Wynkyn de Worde. The first History Detective? Lorenzo Valla (1407-57), De Falso Credita et Ementita Constantini Donatione Declamatio; exposes the Donation of Constantine (Constitutum Domini Constantini Imperatoris) of Mar. 30 (315/317?), granting to the papacy "the city of Rome, and all the provinces, places and cities of Italy and the western regions" (the Papal States) as a medieval forgery composed in 750-800 C.E., first indirectly mentioned by Pope Hadrian I in 778, and first directly mentioned by Pope Leo IX in 1054. Art: In this decade (1425-30?) Medici-backed Donatello in Florence sculpts his dangly Bronze Statue of David, the first free-standing bronze nude since antiquity, risking trouble with the authorities who prosecute sodomy? Jacopo Bellini (1400-70), Virgin of Humility; favorite of the Prince of Este. Fra Filippo Lippi (1406-69), Madonna and Child - Christ and his mother are now whiter than Cheer? Plays: Anon., The Castle of Perserverance (3,649 lines); earliest known full-length vernacular play; incl. a drawing of a theatre in the round. Births: Russian Moscow grand duke (1462-1505) Ivan III Vasilievich (the Great) (d. 1505) on Jan. 22 in Moscow; son of Vasilii (Basil) II; grandfather of Ivan IV the Terrible (1530-84). Hapsburg duke of Austria and king of Bohemia (1440-57) and Hungary (1440-57) Ladislaus (Ladislas) (Laszlo) V Posthumous (d. 1457) on Feb. 22 in Kamarom; posth. only son of Albert II of Hapsburg (1397-1439) and Elisabeth of Bohemia (1409-42) (daughter of HRE Sigismund I); 2nd cousin of HRE Frederick III. Spanish "Stanzas About the Death of My Father" poet Jorge Manrique (d. 1479). Flemish painter Hugo van der Goes (d. 1482) in Goes (Zeeland); likes to paint the Holy Family. Scottish "The Wallace" bard Blind Harry (Hary) (the Minstrel) (d. 1492). Swedish regent (1470-97, 1501-3) Sten Sture the Elder (d. 1503); son of Gustav Anundsson and Birgitta Stensdotter Bielke (half-sister of Charles VIII). Hindu poet and religious reformer (St.) Kabir (d. 1518); disciple of Ramanand; urges a compromise between Hinduism and Islam, denounces the cast system, condemns idol worship, and regards Rama as the supreme deity; his followers, called Kabirpanthi go on to found the Sick, er, Sikh religion. Deaths: Lithuanian grand duke (1432-40) Sigismund Kestutaitis (b. 1351) on Mar. 20 in Trakai Peninsula Castle (assassinated). Dutch printer Laurens Koster (b. 1370) (plague). German elector of Brandenburg (1415-71) Frederick I (b. 1371) on Sept. 20 in Cadolzburg Castle, Bavaria.
1441 On Apr. 3 Blanche of Navarre (b. 1387) dies, and her culturny son Charles IV, Prince of Viana (1421-61) (who translates Aristotle's "Ethics" into Spanish and writes a history of the kings of Navarre) is exiled by his father John II (later king of Aragon in 1458), causing him to start a lifelong fruitless civil war to gain the throne; meanwhile his wife (since 1439) Agnes of Cleves (1373-1448) (granddaughter of Philip III the Good of Burgundy) shoots blanks and dies childless in 1448. On June 7 Bordeaux U. in British-owned Aquitaine, France is founded by Pope Eugene IV. On Oct. 31 after Niccolo Piccinino defeats him at Martinengo and forces him to give him the lordship of Piacenza, Francesco Sforza concludes a truce with Duke Filippo Maria Visconti of Milan and marries his daughter (his 2nd wife) Bianca Maria Visconti (1425-68) in Cremona, causing the pope and the king of Naples to quit trusting him and give the command of the papal forces to Piccinino - they're all mercenaries, right? The Crimean Khanate becomes a major power, buffering the Ottoman Empire and the Russians (until 1783). Portuguese explorer Nuno Tristao (Tristão) (Tristam) sails to Cabo Blanco (Cape Blanc) S of Cape Bojador in West Africa, and finds the first loose African negroes running around without pink slips and dog tags, prompting plans to restart the slave trade; he brings back some Moors, who when they get to Portugal are allowed to return after trading themselves for "black Moors" with kinky hair; Portuguese Order of Christ member Antao Goncalves makes the first European landing on the W coast of Africa at Rio de Oro (Ouro) (Gold River) S of Cape Bojador, obtaining gold dust from traders and bringing the first black African slaves to Europe via the Atlantic Ocean (12 black Muslim Azanaghis) (before this they had all been brought via the Mediterranean, but weren't as good as the ones from the W coast?), which Goncalves gives as a gift to his boss Prince Henry the Navigator - I did what I did before love came to town? Ougadougou (originally Kumbee-Tenga = head war chief's village) on the upper Volta River becomes capital of the Mossi Kingdoms (Empire) (ends 1896). Political union is lost in the Yucatan among the Mayans. Architecture: God's House in London is founded by rector William Byngham to provide secular studies for schoolteachers. Inventions: The Rain Gauge is invented in Korea. Births: German Saxon elector (1464-86) Ernst (Ernest) (d. 1486) on Mar. 24 in Meissen; 2nd son of Frederick II of Saxony and Margarete of Austria (sister of HRE Frederick III); brother of Albrecht the Bold (1443-1500); founder of the Ernestine line of Saxon princes. Spanish Inquisitor (St.) Pedro de Arbues (Arbués) (d. 1484). Persian courtier-poet Mir Ali Shir Nava'i (d. 1501); translates Persian lit. into Chaghatai Turkish, transforming it into a literary language. Italian painter Luca Signorelli (Luca d'Egidio di Ventura) (d. 1523) in Cortona, Tuscany. Deaths: Spanish queen of Navarre (1425-41) Blanche I of Navarre (b. 1387) on Apr. 1 in Santa Maria la Real de Nieva. Flemish painter Jan van Eyck (b. 1390).
1442 On Mar. 18-25 the Battle of Hermannstadt (Sibiu) (Szeben) sees 10K Hungarian troops under John Hunyadi defeat 25K Ottoman troops under Mesid Bey, becoming Hunyadi's 3rd V after Smederevo in 1437. On Oct. 30 Isabella Stewart (1425-94), daughter of James I of Scotland marries Duke Francis of Brittany. The French take Gascony from England, except for Bordeaux and Bayonne; the English unsuccessfully siege Dieppe. Portuguese Prince Henry the Navigator (1394-1460) bequeaths his gift of African slaves to Pope Eugene IV, who in the bull Illius Qui (Those Who) confers upon him title to all lands E of Cape Blanc, causing Portugal to eagerly go into the African slave trade; meanwhile Alfonso of Braganza (1377-1461)), 8th count of Barcelos, illegitimate son of Joao I becomes the 1st duke of Braganza in Portugal, founding the House of Braganza (Bragança) (ends 1910). Christopher III of Denmark and Sweden is elected king of Norway, and now rules the big Scandinavian three despite being a Hansa puppet. Enea Silvio de Piccolomini (1405-64), lay member of the Council of Basel is sent to take part in the German Diet in Frankfurt am Main, and becomes HRE Frederick III's poet laureate and private secy., going on to write several works of lit. under name name Aeneas Silvius (Syvlius), incl. the erotic novel Euryalus and Lucretia, or The Story of Two Lovers in the style of Boccaccio until 1446, when he takes holy orders, moving up quick and becoming cardinal and prince of the empire in 1448, and Pope Pius II in 1458; meanwhile Frederick III orders all the Jews living near the cathedral in Frankfurt resettled after their singing in their synagogue disturbs the Christian services - what a great compromiser? James, 6th earl of Douglas marries his son Archibald Douglas to the young heiress of the earldom of Moray, ignoring the claim of her elder sister, who is married to James Critchton, son of chancellor (since 1439) William Chrichton; Douglas also arranges the marriage (next year) of his eldest son William Douglas (b. 1425) to Margaret "the fair maid of Galloway", sister of the 6th earl of Douglas, whom he got executed in 1440, then dies, and William Douglas succeeds as 8th earl of Douglas. Edirne becomes the festival city of the Ottoman empire. Sweden adopts a blue coat of arms with a yellow cross inspired by the 1275 coat of arms of Magnus Birgersson of Denmark, which in 1906 becomes the Swedish flag; in 1992 Kazakhstan adopts a blue flag with yellow insignia. Births: English king #37 (1461-83, except 1470-1) Edward IV, 4th Duke of York (d. 1483) on Apr. 28 in Rouen, Normandy; son of Richard Plantagenet, 3rd duke of York (1411-60) and Cicely Neville, duchess of York (1415-95). Japanese emperor #103 (1464-1500) Go-Tsuchimikado (Fusahito) (d. 1500) on July 3; eldest son of Go-Hanazono (1419-71). English "Trimming Duke" Sir John de la Pole, 2nd Duke of Suffolk, 2nd Marquess of Suffolk, 5th Earl of Suffolk (d. 1491); son of William de la Pole, 1st duke of Suffolk (1396-1450) and Alice Chaucer (daughter of Thomas Chaucer). Italian Florentine sculptor-architect Benedetto da Majano (d. 1498) in Majano, Tuscany. Deaths: Islamic Mamluk religious scholar Ahmad al-Maqrizi (b. 1364) in Egypt; leaves History of 15th Cent. Cairo. Spanish princess Yolande of Aragon (b. 1384) on Nov. 14. Scottish lord James "the Gross" Douglas, 7th earl of Douglas (b. ?); entombed in St. Bride's Kirk, Douglas, Lanarkshire, his body being too fat for the prefabbed tomb, requiring his body to be rendered down. Hungarian-Bohemian-German queen Elisabeth of Bohemia (b. 1409) on Dec. 19 in Gyor (Raab).
1443 On Jan. 1 Pope Eugene IV issues an encyclical calling for the faithful to go and defend their Christian brothers in the East against the infidel Muslim Turks in the Crusade of Varna (ends 1444); the response is almost nil, except from Wallachia, Burgundy, Poland-Hungary, and Transylvania (where John Hunyadi has been kicking Turk butt since 1441), who send 25K troops; early in the year John (Janos) Hunyadi "the White Knight" (1387-1456) of Hungary and Vladislaus (Wladyslaw III) (1424-44) of Poland-Hungary lead the Crusaders into S Serbia and capture Nish and Sofia, making Vladislav III a Hungarian nat. hero, but they are finally turned back on Dec. 12 at the Battle of Zlatica; meanwhile Prince Skanderbeg (Scanderbeg) (Iskender Beg) (Lord Alexander) (Georg Kastrioti) (1405-68) sees his chance, revolts, and on Nov. 28 becomes the ruler (prince) of independent Christian Albania (until 1468); the Ottomans lick their wounds over the winter, and by spring decide to call it quits. In June Blessed Ferdinand (b. 1402), prince of Portugal, son of King John I dies in Muslim captivity in Fez, Morocco after trying to recapture Ceuta. Philip III the Good of Burgundy conquers the duchy of Luxembourg. After forming an alliance with Francesco Sforza, Alfonso V of Aragon defeats Rene I the Good of Anjou, and claims the throne of Naples. Tvrtko II dies, and is succeeded by Stephen (Stjepan) Tomas Kotromanic (-1461) as king of Bosnia (until 1461). Duke Frederick V's imprisoned ward Ladislaus V Posthumous (b. 1440) is recognized as king of Bohemia by the Bohemian diet; too bad, he isn't freed until 1452 or crowned until 1453. I-am-the-most-amazing-man Scottish chancellor (since 1439) William Crichton is created Lord Crichton of Sanquhar by Parliament, and makes a load of dough from a loan to James II in 1450, allowing him to build up his cool Crichton Castle in Midlothian S of Edinburgh at the head of the Tyne River. The English issue an order on quarantine and cleansing to prevent the spread of plague - only a century late? Copenhagen (modern pop. 1M) becomes the capital of Denmark. The fishing village of Pusan in (South) Korea is opened to Japanese trade (modern pop. 4M) - you invited them or they invited themselves? Architecture: Brunelleschi finishes the Duomo (Cupola) of Florence Cathedral (begun 1420). The Church of St. John the Baptist in Cardiff, Wales (severely damaged in the Owen Glendower revolt) is rebuilt. Inventions: Hunmin Chong-um (Hunminjeongeum) (Correct Sounds to Teach the People), a document describing the new Hangul Korean writing system invented by King Sejong is pub. in Chinese. Art: Donatello (1386-1466), Gen. Gattamelata (1443-53) (sculpture) (Padua). Births: German Saxon elector Albrecht (Albert) (the Bold) (the Courageous) (d. 1500) on Jan. 27 in Grimma; youngest son of Frederick II the Gentle (1412-64) and Margarete of Austria (sister of HRE Frederick III); brother of Duke Ernst (1441-1486); member of the Order of the Golden Fleece. Bohemian king (1469-90) and Austrian duke (1487-90) and king of Hungary and Croatia (1458-90) Matthias Corvinus I (the Just) (d. 1490) on Feb. 23 in Kolozsvar (Cluj-Napoca, Romania); son of John Hunyadi (1387-1456) and Erzsebet Szilagyi (1410-83); brother of Laszlo Hunyadi (1431-57); he never called himself Corvinus, which was coined by biographer Antonio Bonfini (1434-1503) who claims he descends from the ancient Roman Corvini gens. Spanish nobleman-stud Beltran (Beltrán) de la Cueva y Alfonso de Mercado, 1st Duke of Albuquerque (d. 1492) in Ubeda; court favorite of Henry IV; created duke in 1463; husband of Mencia, niece of Cardinal Mendoza; rumored father of Juana la Beltrana (1462-1530) by Henry's 2nd wife Princess Joan of Portugal (1439-75). Italian painter Piero del Pollaiolo (It. "hen coop") (Benci) (d. 1496) in Florence; brother of Antonio del Pollaiolo (1429-98). Italian sculptor-architect Giuliano da Sangallo (d. 1516) in Florence; brother of Antonio da Sangallo the Elder (1453-1534); father of Francesco da Sangallo (1494-1576); favorite of Lorenzo de' Medici; influenced by Leon Battista Alberti and Filippo Brunelleschi; influences Raphael and Leonardo da Vinci. English soldier Thomas Howard, 2nd Duke of Norfolk, 1st Earl of Surrey (d. 1524); son of John Howard (1430-85); father of Thomas Howard, 3rd duke of Norfolk (1473-1554) and Elizabeth Howard (-1538). Deaths: English archbishop Henry Chichele (b. 1363) on Apr. 12. Scottish nobleman James Douglas, 7th earl of Douglas (b. 1371) on Mar. 24. French officer La Hire (b. 190) on Jan. 11 in Montauban; his face is later used for the Jack of Hearts on French playing cards; his name becomes a name for a choleric dispositin.
1444 On June 12 Vladislaus (Wladyslaw) III of Poland-Hungary signs a 10-year truce with Sultan (since 1421) Murad II (1403-51) in Adrianople, restoring the kingdom of Serbia in return for recognizing Ottoman suzerainty in Bulgaria and Wallachia, then reneges when a Crusader army organized by the pope, Hungary, and Venice arrives from Venice on Aug. 4 and joins their crusade into Bulgaria, hoping to kick the Turks out of Europe; in Aug. Murad II concludes a peace treaty with the principality of Karaman, freeing him from his main adversary in the E so that he can kick Crusader butt in the west; in Aug. Murad II resigns and retires to Bursa in favor of his 12-y.-o. son Mehmed (Mehmet) (Mohammed) II (the Conqueror) (1432-81), who becomes Ottoman sultan #7, but the Janissaries don't cotton to him and want his daddy to return to the throne, which he does in May 1446; meanwhile, when he hears about the approaching Crusaders, daddy gathers an army, and on Nov. 10 his forces varnish the sorry-ass Wallachians, the Poles under still green 20-y.-o. Vladislaus (Wladyslaw) III (1424-44), and the Hungarians under John (Janos) Hunyadi "the White Knight" (1387-1456) at the Battle of Varna, in E Bulgaria near the Black Sea, with 10K Crusaders KIA, plus more from frostbite; Vladislaus III (b. 1424) is KIA, causing him to become known as Vladislaus III of Varna, leaving no wife or kids, causing a 3-year interregnum in Poland, while in Hungary his kiddie former rival Ladislaus Posthumus is elected king by the Hungarian nobles, who send a deputation to Vienna to ask Duke Frederick V for his release, which he refuses, causing the appointment of John Hunyadi as his regent in Hungary (until 1452) and George of Podebrady as his regent in Bohemia; Vlad II Dracul gives his sons Mircea I, Radu the Handsome, and Vlad III to the sultan as hostages (until 1447); the overwhelming V ends the Crusade promised by the West after the Act of Union in 1439, and frees the Turks to conquer Constantinople and E Europe for decades; Vladislaus III really survives, and becomes the father of Christopher Columbus? On Oct. 15 after driving Francesco Sforza from the Marche in E Italy, and being defeated at Montelauro, then being recalled to Milan by duke Filippo Maria Visconti, allowing Sforza to finish off his army in his absence, lame half-pint super-soldier Niccolo Piccinino (b. 1386) dies of grief and wounds in Milan. Taking advantage of the Crusader diversion, Prince Skanderbeg (1405-68) forms an alliance of Albanian princes, which successfully counters 13 Ottoman invasions over the next 20 years. Cardinal Henry Beaufort's man William de la Pole, 1st Earl of Suffolk (1396-1450) wins control of the council, and gets Duke Humphrey of Gloucester ousted; he secures a 2-year truce with the French in return for a marriage between Henry VI and Margaret of Anjou, niece of Charles VII's queen, and becomes known as Jack Napes (tame ape), although he gets a promotion to marquess and later duke, because of his badge consisting of a clog and chain such as is used to keep apes in captivity; too bad, a secret clause in the marriage agreement gives Normandy back to France. Agnes Sorel (1422-50) is the first mistress of the king of France to be publicly acknowledged as such - don't you worry about a thing? Humphrey Stafford (1402-60), great-grandson of Edward III and warden of the Cinque Ports becomes the first duke of Buckingham - you don't lindsay? Nuno Tristao reaches the Senegal River. The Siamese capture Angkor Wat. Architecture: Cosimo de' Medici founds the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana in Florence. Births: Italian duke of Milan (1466-76) Galeazzo Maria Sforza (d. 1476) on Jan. 24 in Milan; son of Francesco Sforza (1401-66) and Bianca Maria Visconti (1425-68). German "De Inventione Dialectica" humanist scholar-diplomat-organist Rudolf (Rudolph) Agricola (AKA Phrisius) (d. 1485) on Feb. 17 in Baflo (near Groningen); educated at the U. of Erfurt and U. of Louvain; one of the first scholars N of the Alps to learn Greek; known for his polished Latin, and for learning Hebrew. Italian architect Donato d'Agnolo Bramante (Lazzari) (d. 1514) in Monte Asdrualdo (near Urbino); pupil of Piero della Francesca and Mantegna. Spanish grammarian-lexicographer Antonio de Nebrija (Lebrija) (Elio Antonio Martinez de Jarava) (d. 1522); big man in the Christian humanities-loving court of Ferdinand and Isabella. German artist Thomas Burgkmair (d. 1523) in Augsburg; father of Hans Burgkmair the Elder (1473-1531). Italian psychic Milo Giacomo Rambaldi (d. 1496) :) Deaths: Italian condottiero Niccolo Piccinino (b. 1386) on Oct. 15 in Milan (dies of grief and wounds received fighting Francesco Sforza). English soldier John Beaufort, 1st duke of Somerset (b. 1403) (suicide). Italian humanist historian Leonardo Bruni (b. 1369) on Mar. 9 in Florence; leaves History of the Florentine People (12 vols.), dividing history into Antiquity, Middle Ages, and Modern, becoming the first modern history book?; pub. in Strasbourg in 1610. Dutch painter Robert Campin (b. 1375) on Apr. 26. Greek Orthodox theologian St. Mark of Ephesus (Manuel Eugenicus) (b. 1392) on June 23 in Constantinople. Polish king (1434-44) and Hungarian king (1440-4) Vladislaus III of Varna (b. 1424) on Nov. 10 in Varna (KIA).
1445 The plague strikes England again - it doesn't matter, they passed a law? On May 19 after he decrees that taxes from Medina del Campo will be paid to him instead of John II of Aragon, supporters of John II of Castile, incl. Baron Alvaro de Luna defeat rebel nobles in the First Battle of Olmedo outside Olmedo, Castile. On Aug. 16 Margaret Stewart (b. 1424), wife (since 1436) of French dauphin Louis (future Louis XI), who wore a tight corset in a vain attempt to prevent pregnancy, and who was plagued by scurrilous gossip from her hubby's friends (since he detests her for being a favorite of his hated daddy Charles VII) dies in childbirth, her last words being "Fie on life! Speak no more of it to me". Reneging on his promise (arranged by the king's uncle Duke Humphrey of Gloucester) to marry the daughter of the earl of Armagnac (close relative of French king Charles VII), to insure peace Henry VI (b. 1421) of England marries Margaret of Anjou (1430-82), daughter of "Good King" Rene I of Anjou (1409-80), king (since 1435) of Naples, which is arranged by Gloucester's rival the earl of Suffolk, whom the king elevates to duke as a reward, even though Suffolk is in love with her himself and arranges the marriage so he can keep her close and play both ends against the middle; Rene receives full control over the duchies of Maine and Anjou in an unusual reverse dowry, which incenses Gloucester; she dominates the king, and works hand in hand with Suffolk and the duke of Somerset to run the kingdom, while Suffolk hopes to control her, the king, and the throne of England; see Shakespeare's "King Henry VI", Pts. 1-3 for a dramatized version. The town of Duisburg repels an attack by the archbishop of Cologne. Antao Goncalves of Portugal visits the Bay of Arguin and contracts with Muslim merchant Ahude Meymam to purchase 10 black slaves, along with some gold dust and ostrich eggs, becoming the first recorded purchase of West Africans by Europeans in West Africa? Venetian explorer Ca'da Mosto discovers the Gambia River in West Africa, going approximately 150 mi. into the interior. Portuguese explorer Dinis Dias (Diniz Diaz), who was of retirement age but decided "he was unwilling to let himself grow soft in the well-being of repose" discovers and rounds Cape Verde (800km S of Cap Blanc) the westernmost point of Africa, and increases the Portuguese trade with West Africa; he misses the Cape Verdes Islands. The first mention of beer brewing in the village of Hoegaarden near Tienen in Flanders, which becomes known for its mainly wheat White beer (Witbier), with coriander and orange peel added as flavorings; too bad, the last white beer brewery closes in 1957, but in 1966 local milkman Pierre Celis (1925-2011) opens a new one in his hay loft using Laraha (Curacao orange peel); in 1985 after a fire it is acquired by Interbrew, which merges in 2004 with AmBev of Brazil, becoming InBev, acquiring Anheuser-Busch in 2008 to become AB InBev; it is traditionally served in a hexagonal glass with a slice of lemon. Art: Italian Florentine painter Andrea del Castagno (1423-57) begins painting his Christ Frescoes. Poetry: Juan Rodriguez de la Camara (1390-1450), Triunfo de la Donas (Triumph of the Women); gives 40 feminist arguments to refute the 1438 "Corbacho" of Alfonso Martinez de Toledo. Births: Italian philosopher-poet (trans. of the Corpus Hermeticum) Lodovico Lazzarelli (d. 1500) on Feb. 4 in San Severino Marche. Italian Renaissance painter Sandro Botticelli ("Little Barrels") (Alessandro di Mariano dei Vanni Filipepi) (d. 1510) on Mar. 1 in Florence; his brother Antonio beats gold leaf; pupil of Fra Filippo Lippi, Mantegna, and Verrocchio. Italian architect-sculptor Gian Giacomo Quadri (Dolcebuono) (d. 1504) in Lugano. Egyptian Shaf'i Sunni scholar Imam Jalaluddin al-Suyuti (d. 1505) in Cairo; student of Jalaluddin al-Mahalli (1389-1459). French historian-diplomat ("the French Machiavelli") Philippe de Comines (Commines) (d. 1509). Italian Franciscan monk (prof. of sacred theology in Venice) ("the Father of Accounting and Bookkeeping") Luca Bartolomeo di Pacioli (Paciolo) (d. 1517) in Borgo Santo Sepolcro, Tuscany; math teacher of Leonardo da Vinci. Italian Umbrian School painter Fiorenzo di Lorenzo (d. 1525). Italian humanist statesman Pier Paolo Vergerio the Elder (b. 1370) on July 8 in Buda, Hungary; "The catastrophe of 1405 ruined Vergerio's career as a humanist" (Hans Baron). Deaths: Scottish queen (1424-37) Joan Beaufort (b. 1404) on July 15. Scottish-born French dauphine Margaret Stewart (b. 1424) on Aug. 16 in Chalons-sur-Marne, Marne (dies during childbirth).
1446 In Jan. Alfonso V of Portugal (b. 1432) attains the age of majority, but decides to keep Pedro as regent - because he's an African? In May Murad II reascends the Ottoman throne after his 14-y.-o. son Mehmed II proves too young to rule; the Turks take Corinth, expanding into C Greece. French dauphin Louis conspires against his father Charles VII's mistress Agnes Sorel and Pierre de Breze, and is exiled to the Dauphine, which he governs himself. Sigismund of Austria (1427-96) (1st cousin of HRE Frederick III) becomes Hapsburg duke of Austria and Tirol (until 1490). King (since 1424) Binnya Ran I (b. 1395) dies, and his nephew (adopted son) Binnya Waru (1418-51) becomes Burmese Hanthawaddy king #12 (until May 30, 1451), becoming known for traveling around his kingdom disguised as a commoner and dispensing strict disciplinary justice. A Jew named zum Buchsbaum is murdered in Frankfurt, and the town council secy. records it along with three Christian crosses, and the notations "God be praised" (Te Deum laudamus) and "Christ is risen" (Crist ist entstanden). Muzaffar Syah (Raja Kassim) (-1456) becomes the ruler #5 of Melaka (Malaysia) (until 1456), immediately facing a land attack by Siam, which is met by gen. Bendahara Paduka Raja Tun Perak (-1498), causing him to become military CIC. Guinea-Bissau on the W coast of Africa is discovered by Portuguese explorer Nuno Tristao. Gavle (Gävle) receives a charter from Christopher of Bavaria, becming the oldest city in Norrland (Northern Lands). Architecture: I have senior moments but my skin shouldn't? French-style Rosslyn (Roslin) (Rose Line) Chapel (AKA the Cathedral of Codes and the Bible in Stone) 7 mi. S of Edinburgh on the N-S meridian that runs through King Arthur's Glastonbury is begun (finished in the 1480s) by up-and-coming William Sinclair (St. Clair), 1st Earl of Caithness (1410-84), son of Henry Sinclair, 2nd earl of Orkney (1375-1422) (protector of James I), who is created the first lord St. Clair in 1449, lord chancellor of England in 1454-6, followed by 3rd earl of Orkney in 1455-1470; it ends up with a carved coded interior that conspiracy theorists and Knights Templar junkies just love? King's College Chapel at Cambridge U. is begun (ends 1515). Al Bidya Mosque in Fujairah, Oman is built. Nonfiction: In the 9th lunar month King Sejong of Korea pub. Hunminjeongeum, describing his cool new alphabetic writing system for Korean. Births: French royal heir Charles de Valois, Duc de Berry (d. 1472) on Dec. 26 in Tours; son of Charles VII (1403-61) and Marie of Anjou (1404-63); brother of Louis XI (1423-63). Italian painter Francesco di Giovanni Botticini (d. 1498) in Florence; many of his works end up being attributed to Botticelli until Am. art historian Bernard Berenson (1865-1959) straightens it out? Franco-Flemish composer (greatest in Europe?) Alexander Agricola (d. 1506). Italian Umbrian School painter Il Perugino (Pietro Perugino) (Pietro Vannucci) (Pier Della Pieve) (d. 1523) in Citta della Pieve, Umbria; pupil of Andrea del Verrochio, Fiorenzo di Lorenzo, and Piero della Francesco; teacher of Raphael; known for his Madonna and his spacious landscape backgrounds bathed in fresh golden light. Deaths: Italian architect Filippo Brunelleschi (b. 1377). Italian scholar Vittorino da Feltre (b. 1378) on Feb. 2 in Mantua. French grand chamberlain Georges de la Tremoille (b. 1382) on May 6. Italian poet Leonardo Giustiniani (b. 1388). Burmese king (1424-46) Binnya Ran I (b. 1395) in Pegu.
1447 On Feb. 23 Pope (since 1431) Eugene IV (b. 1388) dies, and on Mar. 6 Tommaso Parentucelli is elected Pope (#208) Nicholas V (1397-1455) (two nickels make a dime?); a bibliophile and humanist (fan of ancient pagan works, causing him to hire hundreds of scholars and copyists, creating a mini-Renaissance until the advent of printing), in 1451 he founds the Vatican Library; he also promptly begins improving Rome's streets, water supply, etc., making it magnificent to impress the little people and discourage any more antipopes from even thinking about it?; he begins replacing Constantine's Basilica (4th cent.) with St. Peter's Basilica, which ends up taking 20 more popes to complete (until 1784) - was he a neat freak? On Mar. 12 Shah Rukh (b. 1377) dies during a journey, and his mathematician-astronomer son Ulugh Beg (Mohammad Taregh bin Sharokh) (1393-1449) becomes Timurid shah of Persia (until 1449). On June 25 after a 3-year interregnum Casimir (Kazimierz) IV Jagiellon (1427-92) (grand duke of Lithuania since June 29, 1440) succeeds his brother Wladyslaw III as king of Poland (until June 7, 1492). On Aug. 13 Duke Filippo Maria Visconti (b. 1392) dies without heirs, ending the Visconti Dynasty in Milan (begun 1277); the Ambrosian Repub. takes over Milan (until 1450), with his flip-flopping son-in-law Francesco Sforza fighting it on his way to mastery of Milan. In Dec. Vlad II Dracul (b. 1390) is killed by the Turks along with his son Mircea I (b. 1427) (who is buried alive), and his other hostage sons Radu the Handsome and Vlad III are released, although Radu prefers to stay with the Turks and become a Muslim (becoming a lover of future sultan Mehmed II?); Vlad III Tepes (the Impaler) Dracula (1431-76) claims the throne of Wallachia, while John Hunyadi puts his own candidate on the throne. Scanderbeg defeats Murad II, gaining independence for India, Persia and Afghanistan. Duke Humphrey of Gloucester, rival of the Beaufort clan in England is arrested on trumped-up treason charges, and dies in confinement five days later (murdered in his sleep?); this incident and their other failures render Suffolk (Jack Napes) and Somerset unpopular, even as they gain ascendancy in the council; Richard Plantagenet, duke of York is now the natural heir to the throne as long as mad King Henry VI remains childless; meanwhile Margaret of Anjou gains complete control over the weak-minded king and the govt. Safavid Sufi leader #4 Shaykh Junayd (1430-60) is deposed by his uncle Ja'far, and goes into exile in Syria and E Anatolia (until 1459), where he builds a following who considers him divine, enters into an alliance with White Sheep Turk ruler Uzun Hasan, marries his sister, and begins a holy war against the Christians in Georgia. John II the Great of Aragon marries 2nd wife Juana Enriquez of Castile, who goes on to bear Ferdinand II of Aragon (of screw-u-Columbus fame) and consider his son (by his 1st wife Blanche I of Navarre) Prince Charles of Viana an obstacle. The first Jewish community in Lutsk, Ukraine is mentioned. Palermo U. in Italy is founded. The city council of Munich, Bavaria, Germany issues an ordinance requiring beer brewers to use only water, barley, and hops. Inventions: Music is first printed from engraved plates, which becomes the std. until 1860, when offset lithography is used. Births: Ottoman sultan #8 (1481-1512) Bayezid (Bajazet) II (the Just) (d. 1512) on Dec. 3 in Dimetoka (modern-day Didymoteicho or Twin Walls), Thrace; son of Mehmed II (1432-81) and Gulbahar Khatun (Greek Orthodox); father of Selim I (1465-1520). Bavarian duke (1465-1508) Albert (Albrecht) IV the Wise (d. 1508) on Dec. 15 in Munich; son of Duke Albert III (1401-60) and Anna of Brunswick-Grubenhagen-Einbeck; younger brother of Duke John IV (1437-63). Italian mystic nun (St.) Catherine of Genoa (d. 1510); known for her visions of Purgatory. Italian early Renaissance architect-sculptor Giovanni Antonio Amadeo (d. 1522) in Pavia. Deaths: English bishop-cardinal Henry Beaufort (b. 1374) on Apr. 11; offers Death the whole English treasury on his deathbed in exchange for living longer?; in Henry VI, Pt. II, Act 3, Scene 3, Shakespeare portrays him as riddled with guilt over the death of Duke Humphrey of Gloucester, with Warwick uttering the soundbyte: "See how the pangs of death do make him grin"; John Reynolds (1788) and Henry Fuseli (1808) later paint the scene. Persian Timurid Shah Rukh (b. 1377) on Mar. 12. Florentine painter Masolino da Panicale (b. 1383). English prince Duke Henry of Gloucester (b. 1390) on Feb. 23; donates 279 classical mss. to Oxford, becoming the nucleus of its library. Wallachian prince Vlad II Dracul (b. 1390) in Dec. Italian Milan duke #2 (1412-47) Filippo Maria Visconti (b. 1392) on Aug. 13.
1448 By this year approx. 1K black Africans have been carried to Portugal or its newly-acquired Atlantic islands Azores and Madeira. Instead of discovering America, the dumb Danes fight over the scraps in the Baltic? On Jan. 6 Chistopher III of Bavaria (b. 1416) dies, and on June 20 the Swedish nat. assembly elects Karl Knutsson Bonde as king Charles VIII (1409-70) of Sweden and Norway (until 1457), ending the Kalmar Union with Denmark; the Danish council elects Duke Adolf of Schleswig-Holstein (1401-59), but he declines since he's an ancient 47-y.-o., and his nephew Count Christian of Oldenburg (son of his sister Hedwig) is elected as Christian I (1426-81) of Denmark in Copenhagen after he promises never to unite S Jutland (Schleswig-Holstein) with Denmark, and puts all real power in the hands of his council, then does ditto to get the crown of Norway; he marries Christopher III's widow Dorothea of Brandenburg (1430-95) to make it nice and cozy; meanwhile King Kong, er, Karl tries to secure the throne of Norway, but is ousted by King Christian - Bonde, Knutsson Bonde? On ? sultan Murad II defeats Albanian chief Scanderbeg, then defeats the Hungarians under Janos Hunyadi again on Oct. 17-19 at the Second Battle of Kosovo; the Ottoman path to Constantinople is now clear, and the Balkans better get used to mosques? The Anglo-Scottish War is renewed: the earl of Northumberland invades Scotland and burns and sacks Dumfries; in revenge the Scots under Douglas burn Alnwick; Northumberland invades again and is defeated on Oct. 23 at the Battle of the River Sark (Lochmaben Stone) near Gretna Green in Annandale, and his son Henry is captured; Lancaster and York form two rival groups in England. On Oct. 31 pale and disillusioned John VIII Palaeologus (b. 1392) dies childless, and after a dispute Sultan Murad II chooses his younger brother Constantine (Konstantinos) XI Dragases Palaeologus (Paleologos) (1404-53) to be the last Byzantine emperor (although he doesn't know it yet), and he is crowned next Jan. 6 (until May 29, 1453), entering isolated Constantinople on Mar. 12; his appointment as Roman consul #? is the last in a chain stretching back 1957 years; the Ottomans now slobber over Constantinople, the gateway to Europe, while the emperor vainly tries to get help from his uncaring Western Christian bro's. The French take Maine from the English, and set their sights on Normandy - no, not that? Polish nobleman George of Podebrad (Podiebrad) (Podebrady) (1420-71) seizes Prague, and becomes head of the Hussites, trying to get young king Ladislas Posthumous out of the hands of Frederick III and into Prague. Vlad III Dracula takes the throne of Wallachia with the help of the Turks, but the Saxons depose him and reinstall his brother Vladislav II. Hercegovina separates from Bosnia under King Herceg Stefan. The Concordat of Vienna is signed, a cynical compromise whereby Pope Nicholas V gives the support of the papacy to HRE Frederick III in return for a guarantee of the fidelity of the Germans to Rome; too bad, Freddy surrenders the liberty of the German church gained in the Council of Basel, pissing off the German princes; he also loses his authority in Switzerland. Brainy Mongol ruler Ulugh Beg (b. 1393) stinks himself by massacring the pop. of Herat after defeating Mirza Ala-u-dowleh, causing a backlash resulting in his own son beheading him next year. The Moscow and Kiev churches begin to separate, the former going with the Eastern Orthodox Church and the latter with the Roman Catholic Church. Rene I of Anjou refounds the Order of the Crescent (Ordre du Croissant) (founded in 1268 by Charles I of Naples and Sicily) to revive Louis IX's Order of the Ship and the Double Crescent, inducting Francesco Sforza, the comte de Lenoncourt, Lord Ferri of Sion-Vaudemont (husband of his daughter Iolande de Bar) et al.; too bad, the pope suppresses it. Danish nobleman Vallarte, who had joined the court of Portugal's Prince Henry the Navigator becomes the first N European on record to sail to West Africa, obtaining gold dust from traders; too bad, he is captured and killed off Goree. Henry VI's wife Queen Margaret of Anjou refounds St. Bernard's College (established two years earlier by her husband) as the Queen's College of St. Margaret and St. Bernard; it is later refounded by Edward IV's wife Elizabeth Woodville as Queen's College. Architecture: The pointed Gothic-style Hotel de Ville (Fr. "City Hall") in Louvain, Belgium on the Dyle River 18 mi. E of Brussels is begun (finished 1463). Inventions: The Morris Dance in England is first mentioned. Nonfiction: Giovanni Leardo, Map of the Known World by Giovanni Leardo. Andreas Walsperger, Map of the World. Births: Italian king of Naples (1494-5) Alfonso II (d'Aragon) (d. 1495) on Nov. 4 in Naples; eldest son of Ferdinand I (1423-94) and 1st wife Isabel de Claremont (-1465); cousin of Ferdinand II of Naples; pupil of humanist Giovanni Pontano. German artist Fritz Herlen (d. 1491) in Ulm. German "Virgin in the Rose Arbor" Renaissance engraver-painter Martin Schongauer (d. 1491) in Colmar, Alsace. English prelate-statesman (founder of Corpus Christi, Oxford) Richard Foxe (Fox) (d. 1528). Deaths: Indian mystic poet-saint Kabir (b. 1398). Danish-Swedish king Christopher III of Bavaria (b. 1416) on Jan. 6 in Helsingborg.
1449 On Mar. 24 the English in Normandy, commanded by Edmund Beaufort, duke of Somerset break their truce with France and capture and sack Fougeres, then are sorely pressed by the French, losing battle after battle, being beaten completely next year; the English public blame Somerset for losing their precious French possessions won in 1415, esp. Normandy, and want his head. On Apr. 1 the Treaty of Brussels is signed, and 18-y.-o. James II of Scotland (b. 1430), who begins to rule for himself, marries well-connected Mary of Guelders (Gueldres) (1434-63), daughter of Duke Arnold of Guelders and niece of rich Duke Philip the Good of Burgundy; Scots are now well fu, er, married into Euro nobility, with James' deceased sister Margaret Stewart (1424-45) once married to French dauphin Louis, his sister Isabella Stewart (1425-94) to Duke Francis of Brittany, his daughter Eleanor Stewart (1433-80) to Archduke Sigismund of Austria, and his sister Mary Stewart, Countess of Buchan (1427-65) to Wolfaert VI of Borselen, lord of Veere; the Scots now have access to trade and financing from the Low Countries, as well as Burgundian artillery pieces; although Philip the Good promises a £30K dowry for Mary, he also demands an upfront £5K tocher from James, while he pays in installments, causing James to have to get creative and get the Livingston clan forfeited next Jan. for financial misconduct as comptroller, cashing in on their estates and sharing some of the loot with William, 8th earl of Douglas. On Apr. 7 Antipope (since 1439) Felix V dies, and the Avignon antipope biz dies out; Pope Nicholas V is the last pope to have an Avignon antipope ruling simultaneously. On May 20 after Portuguese infanta prince Pedro, duke of Coimbra (1492) rebels, he is killed in the Battle of Alfarrobeira in Alverca do Ribatejo near Lisbon by forces of his daddy Afonso V and his uncle Duke Afonso of Braganza; Afonso V assumes the rulership of Portugal. On Sept. 8 Chinese emperor (since 1436) Ming Ying Zong is captured in battle by Esen Tayisi (-1455), chief of the Oirat Mongol 4-tribe confederation at the Battle of Tumu Fortress in Hebei, and after Chinese defense minister and gen. Yu Qian (1398-1457) stops the Mongols 50 mi. from Beijing, the emperor's younger brother Zhu Qiyu becomes Ming emperor #7 of China Ming Tai Tsung (Dai Zong) (Ching Ti) (Jingtai) (1428-57) (until 1457). In the fall wannabe duke Francesco Sforza (son-in-law of Duke Filippo Maria Visconti of Milan) begins sieging "his" Milan (until 1450). Richard Plantagenet, duke of York arrives in Ireland as viceroy (lt.), and wins the support of English colonists and natives. The Council of Basel (begun 1439) ends with the Byzantines out of luck and on their own to face the Muslim Turks. Inventions: Henry VI issues a patent for making stained glass to John of Utynam to put in Eaton Boys' School, becoming the first English patent; it has a 20-year life. Births: Italian godfather Lorenzo de Pierfrancesco (the Magnificent) de' Medici (d. 1492) on Jan. 1 in Florence; turns his hometown of Florence into a treasure house of the arts. Italian Florentine painter Domenico di Tomaso Bigordi Ghirlandaio (Ghirlandajo) (d. 1494) on Jan. 11. English War of the Roses malmsey wine flip-flopper George Plantagenet, Duke of Clarence (d. 1478) on Oct. 21 in Dublin; 3rd son of Richard Plantagenet, 3rd duke of York and Cecily Neville; brother of Edward IV and Richard III. Italian humanist printer (inventor of italic typeface and the semicolon) Aldus Manutius the Elder (Aldo Manuzio) (Teobaldo Mannucci) (d. 1515) in Sermoneta (Bassiano); father of Paulus Manutius (1512-74). Deaths: Portuguese prince Peter, duke of Coimbra (b. 1392) on May 20 near Alverca (KIA in the Battle of Alfarrobeira). Mongol astronomer Ulugh Beg (b. 1393) on Oct. 27 en route to Mecca (beheaded by his eldest son 'Abd al-Latif); leaves books of trigonometric tables of sine and tangent values accurate to 8 decimal places.