Monday, October 29, 2007

On October 29, ...

... 1390, Jeanne de Brigue became the 1st person convicted of witchcraft in a secular proceeding before the Parlement de Paris. At trial she confessed, before and after having been tortured, to having invoked a demon. Before this, her skill at divining, or finding things, had been enlisted at times by courts seeking to solve larcenies. de Brigue and another convicted woman would be burned at the stake in August of the following year.
... 1938, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf (left) was born in Monrovia, Liberia, into a family descended from those onetime slaves in the United States who went on to colonize Liberia in the 19th century. Following undergraduate study in Monrovia, she went to the United States, where she earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Colorado and a master's degree in public administration from Harvard. She returned to Liberia and entered politics, but went into exile during periods of dictatorship and political turmoil. In 2005 Sirleaf, known like many 1st woman leaders as the "Iron Lady," was elected President of Liberia.

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