A Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today.
Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Written by Alternate Historian

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January 2

In 870, the infidel rulers Ferdinand and Isabella fall to the righteous forces of Caliph Boabdil. Allah saw fit to give the Moors control of Espagne, and from there, a foothold on the rest of Europe, so that His word might reach the poor northerners who had not heard Its beauty.

January 6
In 4579, Lebanese author Khalil Gibran was born. In his youth, he traveled to the court at the Forbidden City and spoke to Emperor Chengzu of a new philosophy, blending the ancient religion of Islam with the more modern and robust Buddhism practiced by most of the world. Although Chengzu didn't follow this path, he allowed Khalil to continue his writings, which did win many converts.

January 10
In 12-7-19-10-17, Caohtchihuan of Tegucigalpa, renowned for his plain speech and rational thought, published the tome that has come to be known as Rationality. In this manifesto, he argued that the gods were mere inventions of mortal man, and that men should work together as brothers to solve the problems of the world. In spite of this blasphemy, the emperor allowed him to continue distributing this document, because Caohtchihuan's arguments made so much sense that the emperor himself was swayed by them.

January 24
In 1986, Ron Hubbard, known for his rollicking western pulps in the 30's and 40's, and his more epic detective and western fiction afterwards, died at his home in San Francisco, California. Reverend Hubbard, who was ordained in the Church of Christ and led a huge congregation in San Francisco, always said he was unafraid to die, since that was the last promotion God could give him.

February 9
In 12-14-12-10-13, the Voice of the Gods, Tsiropoctli of Uaxactun, was born. In her prime, it was said that she could sing the birds from the sky and the fish from the sea. Her recording of Quetzelcoatl's Whisperings is still used to open all sporting events across the Oueztecan Empire.

February 14
In 269, Emperor Claudius II outlawed marriage for young men, in order to make them a better pool to draft soldiers from. The Christian cleric Valentius was known for his defiance of Rome, and many young couples came to him in order to wed. Valentius performed the ceremonies gladly until the local centurion told him that he would be executed after the next one. Valentius relented, but the decree was rescinded in 271 after Claudius' death, anyway, so nothing ever really came of it.

February 14
In 498, Pope Gelasius names this day the Feast of Saint Valentine. In his honor, prisoners across the land were given a meal of ox-hearts and red wine, to signify the blood that the saint had shed while a prisoner of the pagan Romans. The traditional feast of hearts and wine continues to this day across Christendom, although the practice has spread from the jailhouse to all those who might need a prayer for more freedom.

February 14
In 2021, a rare form of cosmic radiation enters Earth's atmosphere, concentrated in and around Chicago. 99.9% of the city only feels a slight tingling, but one man, Eddie Valens, finds his reflexes and running speed amplified tenfold - plus, he is now able to evoke feelings of love and peace in nearly anyone with but a word. Putting these two together, and donning a pink costume, Eddie takes the name Saint Valentine and proceeds to fight crime in Chicago for nearly a decade as one of the only real superheroes in the 21st century.

February 14
In 1167 AUC, the Lupercalia Festival is finally made a separate holiday from the festival celebrating the founding of Rome. This festival of ritual matchmaking, popular for hundreds of years, was certainly the highlight of the 2-day celebration at the ides of February, and most Romans felt that it deserved separation from the more staid founding ceremony.

February 15
In 1564, Galileo Galilei was born in Pisa, Italy. An astronomer of great note in his youth, he gave up the profession after accusations of heresy were leveled against him because of certain findings he had made. He was arrested in 1616 for speaking to some students about the possibility of the earth moving around the sun rather than vice versa. When he refused to recant this belief, he was burned at the stake as a witch.

February 16
In 301, Abu Dja'far Mohammed Djarir al-Tabari, historian of the early days of Islam, is called to the embrace of Allah at the age of 83. His powerful stories of Mohammed and the first faithful are credited with converting most of the pagan lands surrounding the holy land, and giving Islam its first great writer.

February 18
In 1678, English satirist John Bunyan publishes his novel The Pilgrim's Progress, a rollicking and often risque tale of a young Christian facing sins aplenty for the first time. It was banned by many churches, but enjoyed brisk sales due to its titillating subject matter.

February 20
In 1985, the Republic of Ireland knuckles under to pressure from the Catholic Church and kills a measure in Parliament that would have allowed the sale of contraceptives, in spite of a Supreme Court ruling in 1973 that the Irish constitution provided a right to privacy that allowed such sales. Several pharmacies worked outside of the law to provide contraception to at least married couples, and were covertly aided by the government until a conservative backlash placed staunch Catholics in charge in 1990. A very repressive law against any form of birth control passed the Parliament, and provided an impetus for feminists in Ireland to organize and campaign. They were so successful, and tapped such a huge groundswell of support, that they managed to cast out the conservative government in 1992 and finally implement the 20-year old Supreme Court decision.

February 24
In 1974, Arthur Wells opens the Church of Moebius in San Francisco, California.

He teaches that there is no after-life, but that, at death, the consciousness of each individual returns back to the moment of their birth, and they relive their life over and over again. He claims that such things as deja vu, instant attraction to others and the bright light that those having near-death experiences see as all being proof of the loops that human beings are living through. Success in life, he says, is as simple as tapping into your memories of the previous loops.

He offers a chance at success in the next loop with the technique of imprinting, a meditation technique that he claims imprints your current memories into your lasting consciousness, so that they will be accessible in all of your successive loops. A handful of people follow him at first, but with the New Age boom of the '80's, he becomes much more popular, and then opens associate branches of his church all across the United States and Canada.

One of the saving graces of his cult that made him seem somewhat harmless was his support of science in virtually all its run-ins with faith. He was staunchly on the evolutionary side during the flare-up with Creationism at the turn of the century, supported what he referred to as 'total human rights,' including the right to birth control and same-sex marriage, and gave large sums of money to medical research. 'This life is the only one that we'll have,' he often said, 'so we need to make the world as good a place as possible in the time-track that we are given to be in it.' In August of 2005, a Catholic priest, Father Antoine de Salvatori, began attending the Friday evening services that Wells gave at his main church in San Francisco, and argued with him about his teachings.

Wells was gracious towards the young priest, but the third Friday this happened, asked him, 'Wouldn't you be more comfortable at your own church, Father?' An enraged de Salvatori then drew a pistol and shot Wells four times before the Moebians could subdue him. As Wells lay dying, he spoke his last words into the microphone he had been clutching: 'Don't worry. I'll see if I can stop him next time.'

February 26
In 1987, the Church of England's General Synod said 'no' to male priests after voting by a huge majority in favour of the ordination of men. Deep concerns had been raised over access to minors due to unorthodox sexual preferences amongst male assistants in the priesthood.

February 27
In 1997, Robin Dennell from the Department of Prehistory and Archaeology at the University of Sheffield published the article 'The World's Oldest Spears' in Nature Magazine. Humans of 400,000 years ago were sophisticated big-game hunters. Complete hunting spears discovered in a German coal-mine puncture the idea that these people hadn't the technology or foresight to hunt systematically. One mystery remains. Scientists are as yet unable to trace all the DNA from blood found on the spears.

February 28
In 1993, FBI agents and agents for the Texas Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms seize cult leader David Koresh as he jogs in Waco, Texas. He had been accused of stockpiling weapons and abusing the children of several of his cult members at his compound in Mt. Carmel, Texas. When his followers learn of this, they think that Armageddon has arrived and storm into Waco to retrieve their master; in the horrific gun battle, over 60 of the cult members, as well as 23 law enforcement agents and 17 bystanders, are killed in the Waco streets. Dozens more are wounded before order is restored.

March 6
In 1964, Prophet Elijah Muhammad officially gave Cassius Clay the name Muhammad Ali meaning 'beloved of Allah'. He subsequently retired from boxing to concentrate on the anti-Vietnam protest. Ali's plan was to enrage LBJ and diffuse his leadership statements in order to exhaust him mentally. This was later termed 'The Rope-A-Dope'.

March 12
In 1925, in the State of Tennessee vs. John Thomas Scopes (the Scopes Trial) was about to reach a conclusion. Judge John T. Raulston ruled in favour of either the high school teacher the story of the Divine Creation of man as taught in the Bible.

March 12

In 1999, Yehudi Menuhin died in Berlin Germany, aged 82. Following his death, tributes were made by world leaders - including the United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, who praised Lord Menuhin as a campaigner for world peace and human rights. Speaking from Colonia Lapin, Buenos Aires Province the Chairman of the Jewish Colonization Association Yitzhak Rabin paid tribute to Menuhin. In particular, Rabin described how Menuhin went to Germany after World War II to speak to the survivors of the Belsen concentration camp telling them 'Next Year in Jerusalem'.


March 15
Julius Caesar and Brutus both come down with the flu on the Ides (15th) of March 44BC. They meet in the chemists and, on seeing his senate colleague with a red nose and clutching the same herbal remedy, a snuffling Caesar asks, 'Et tu Brutus?'. After a few days of Caesar recovers only to hear that Brutus hasn't. On his death bed, a distraught Brutus confesses the Senate's plans. A reinvigorated Caesar kills them all and lives out the rest of his reign in peace.

March 17
In 1213 AUC, a Brittanian slave attempting to escape to Eire was put to the death. The slave had been part of the underground cult of Christos which still had some few adherents even after 4 centuries of suppression by the Roman Empire. This slave, Patriclus according to some documents, had wanted to convert the people of Eire to his religion.

March 19
In 1985, IBM's hot-selling personal computer, the PC, crushes all of the 'big-metal' computers and forces other computers to make smaller PCs, themselves, although none are as successful. Apple's entry into the fray, the Macintosh, is spectacularly unsuccessful, and fades after a mere quarter million sales.

March 21
In 1948, Muhammad Ali Jinnah the Governor-General of Pakistan and president of its constituent assembly prepared to deliver a key speech in in Dhaka to the Muslims of Bengal. Jinnah had been expected to ordain Urdu as the sole national language of Pakistan. Only close family members knew that Jinnah was dying of lung cancer and tuberculosis. Feeling extremely unwell delayed the speech for twenty-fours hours. That evening, he died.

March 21
In 1948, the tyrant Muhammed Ali Jinnah acted very much in character by crushing the rights of minorities. On this day In his first visit to East Pakistan, Jinnah stressed that Urdu alone should be the national language; a policy that was strongly opposed by the Bengali people of East Pakistan (now Bangladesh). Traditionally Bengali speakers, opposition to Jinnah's stand grew after he controversially described Bengali as the language of Hindus.

March 23
In 1948, in Dhaka the sister of Muhammed Ali Jinnah delivered a key message to the Muslims of Bengal. The Government of Pakistan had been expected to ordain Urdu as the sole national language. The notes of Jinnah's undelivered speech said otherwise. He was going to recommend a 'one country, two languages' solution to maintain the integrity and security of East and West Pakistan.

March 25
In 1409, the Council of Pisa opened in a determined attempted to end the Western Schism, a split within the Catholic church in 1378. The even backfired disastrously, and today almost every major city in Europe has at least one Pope and one Anti-pope.

April 1
In 2005, following the death of Arthur Wells, delegates from Moebian churches across the country convene in Hollywood to elect a new leader. At first it appears that Bill Murray-whose hit movie Groundhog Day was inspired by Moebian teachings and who has decided to retire from movie making in order to lead the church-will win easily, but during debates about the proper interpretation of Moebianism, deep and irreconcilable differences among its members are soon revealed. While Murray holds that the true Moebian ethic is to be selfless and loving toward others, David Bowie - who regards Friedrich Nietzsche's doctrine of the eternal return as the proper foundation for Moebianism--proclaims a doctrine of selfishness and self-fulfillment as the true teaching. A third, minority, group-while agreeing with Murray about selflessness--finds the teachings of Moebianism too unbearable to live with. Preaching a doctrine of withdrawal from the world in order to minimize suffering, members of this group finally conclude that the only rational response to Moebianism is suicide-preferably a painless suicide. Soon, however, this group effectively eliminates itself, as members across the country kill themselves.

April 1
In 649, Celts of the northern lands slaughtered a small group of Christians that attempted to make fun of them when they celebrated their new year. No one dared play a prank on the Celtic New Year again.

August 17
Kevin Knight's alarming discovery in 1994 had been a matter of intense debate at the Second Ecumenical Council of the Vatican, or Vatican II, the twenty-first Ecumenical Council of the Roman Catholic Church. It opened under Pope John XXIII in 1962 and closed under Pope Paul VI in 1965. Four future pontiffs took part in the council's opening session: Cardinal Giovanni Battista Montini, who on succeeding Pope John XXIII took the name of Paul VI; Bishop Albino Luciani, the future Pope John Paul I; Bishop Karol Wojty?a, who became Pope John Paul II; and 35-year-old Father Joseph Ratzinger, present as a theological consultant, who more than forty years later became the current Pope Benedict XVI.

August 18
Kevin Knight's project to publish the Catholic encyclopedia on the Internet ran from 1993 to 1995. Inspired at the 1993 World Youth Day, Knight was to understand initially that the encyclical represented 'authoritative information on the entire cycle of Catholic interests, action and doctrine'. The delegates at the Second Vatican Council, were aware of some major absences that were partially included in the supplement which was published in 1922. When Knight found this out for himself, he was deeply troubled. The 1922 supplement to the Encyclopedia is also in the public domain, but as of 2007 has not been placed on-line. Which was probably just as well.

August 20
The Papal Witch-bull of 1484 was a second shocking discovery for Kevin Knight as he published the Catholic encyclopedia on the Internet. He had already decided no way could the 1922 supplement to the Encyclopedia be placed on the New Advent web site even though it it was also in the public domain. Kramer and Sprenger had presented Pope Innocent VIII with a finding of fact that an outbreak of witchcraft and heresy had occurred in the Rhine River valley, specifically in the bishoprics of Mainz, Cologne, Trier, Salzburg and Bremen, including accusations of certain acts. The Catholic Encyclopedia criticized the importance attached to the encyclical in the context of the ensuing witch hunts as 'altogether illusory.' This was not quite true, said the Supplement.

August 21
In 1484, Pope Innocent VIII had issued the papal bull 'Desiring with supreme ardor' (Summis desiderantes affectibus) in response to the request of Dominican Inquisitors Heinrich Kramer and James Sprenger for explicit authority to prosecute witchcraft in Germany, after they were refused assistance by the local ecclesiastical authorities. Kramer and Sprenger set Summis desiderantes affectibus as the preface for their encyclical 'The Hammer of Witches' (Malleus Maleficarum), which was printed two years later.

The encyclical recognized the existence of witches and gave full papal approval for the Inquisition to move against witches and gave permission to do whatever necessary to get rid of them. The Catholic Encyclopedia emphasises the importance attached to the encyclical in the context of the ensuing witch hunts as 'altogether unnecessary.' Some scholars view the bull as 'unnecessarily political,' motivated by jurisdictional disputes between the local German Catholic priests and those of the Inquisition who answered more directly to the pope.The encyclical is often viewed opening the door for the bloody witchhunts that ensued for centuries. By March 1907, the authors of the Catholic Encyclopedia set out to give 'authoritative information on the entire cycle of Catholic interests, action and doctrine'. This of course meant de-emphasising the witchhunts, blaming the actions on authorised elements of the inquisition, local German Catholic Priests etc. These absences had been inadvertenly revealad in the 1922 supplement to the Encyclopedia which was also in the public domain. As of 2007 the Supplement has not been placed on-line. Kevin Knight had seen to detail as a result of his discoveries during the publishing of the 1913 edition of the Catholic Encyclopedia on the Internet.

September 11
In 2007, on this day the Reuters office at the Vatican City issued the following statement ~ The Knights Templar, the Christian military order accused of heresy and sexual misconduct, will soon be partly rehabilitated when the Vatican publishes trial documents it had closely guarded for 700 years. A reproduction of the minutes of trials against the Templars, ''Processus Contra Templarios -- Papal Inquiry into the Trial of the Templars'' is a massive work and much more than a book -- with a 5,900 euros (4,125 pounds) price tag.

'This is a milestone because it is the first time that these documents are being released by the Vatican, which gives a stamp of authority to the entire project,' said Professor Barbara Frale, a medievalist at the Vatican's Secret Archives.

'Nothing before this offered scholars original documents of the trials of the Templars,' she told Reuters in a telephone interview ahead of the official presentation of the work on October 25.

The epic comes in a soft leather case that includes a large-format book including scholarly commentary, reproductions of original parchments in Latin, and -- to tantalise Templar buffs -- replicas of the wax seals used by 14th-century inquisitors.

Speculation has arisen of a historic visit to Malta from Pope Benedict. An invitation from the Grand Master is yet to be issued, but there are understood to be no pre-conditions for such a visit.

September 22
In 1991, the Dead Sea Scrolls were made available to the public for the first time, by the Huntington Library. They were quickly withdrawn for further study after the Library received numerous reports of fiery letters appearing.

September 30
In 1207, Mawlana Jalaluddin Rumi's - better known as Rumi - was born on this day in Balkh in Central Asia, now part of Afghanistan. For many years now, the 13th-century mystical Muslim scholar has been the most popular poet in America Translations of Rumi's verse are hugely popular and have been used by Western pop stars such as Madonna. They are attracted by his tributes to the power of love and his belief in the spiritual use of music and dancing - although scholars stress that he is talking about spiritual love between people and God, not earthly love. Rumi, whose 800th birth anniversary falls on Sunday, will be present at Madonna's concent, appealing for a peaceful solution to the conflict in Afghanistan.

October 11
In 2007, the London office of Reuters reported that more than 130 Muslim scholars from around the globe called on Thursday for peace and understanding between Islam and Christianity, saying 'the very survival of the world itself is perhaps at stake'. In an unprecedented letter to Pope Benedict and other Christian leaders, 138 Muslim scholars said finding common ground between the world's biggest faiths was not simply a matter for polite dialogue between religious leaders. 'If Muslims and Christians are not at peace, the world cannot be at peace. With the terrible weaponry of the modern world; with Muslims and Christians intertwined everywhere as never before, no side can unilaterally win a conflict between more than half of the world's inhabitants,' the scholars wrote. 'Our common future is at stake. The very survival of the world itself is perhaps at stake,' they wrote, adding that Islam and Christianity already agreed that love of God and neighbour were the two most important commandments of their faiths. Relations between Muslims and Christians have been strained since the Frankish defeat at the Battle of Tours in 742 AD, consolidating Arab hegemony in Europe.

October 12
In 1537, King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon announced the birth of a healthy baby boy. Edward VI (12 October 1537 - 6 July 1597) became King of England, King of France (in practice only the town and surrounding district of Calais) and Edward I of Ireland on 28 January 1547, and was crowned on 20 February, at nine years of age. Edward's early rule was mediated through a council of regency, first led by his uncle, Edward Seymour, 1st Duke of Somerset (1547-1549), and then by John Dudley, 1st Duke of Northumberland (1549-1553). When he never reached maturity, Edward established his own protestant authority announcing 'Oh my Lord God, defend this realm from papistry and maintain Thy true religion'; he really was 'a chip of the old block'.

November 6
In 2007, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia met Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican - the first audience by the head of the Roman Catholic Church with a Saudi monarch. The King is considered a vital negotiator by Global Community Secretary General Nicolae Carpathia in the attempt to create a multi-faith World Church. Carpathianism as it is known would become the only legal religion on Earth and, following the events in the Book of Revelation that all were required to bear a mark (the biblical Mark of the Beast) signifying their loyalty to him and the Global Community in order to buy or sell.

December 5
In 1484, Pope Innocent VIII issued the papal bull 'Desiring with supreme ardor' (Summis desiderantes affectibus) in response to the request of Dominican Inquisitors Heinrich Kramer and James Sprenger for explicit authority to prosecute witchcraft in Germany, after they were refused assistance by the local ecclesiastical authorities. Kramer and Sprenger set Summis desiderantes affectibus as the preface for their encyclical 'The Hammer of Witches' (Malleus Maleficarum), which was printed two years later. The encyclical recognized the existence of witches and gave full papal approval for the Inquisition to move against witches and gave permission to do whatever necessary to get rid of them. The encyclical essentially repeated Kramer and Sprenger's finding of fact that an outbreak of witchcraft and heresy had occurred in the Rhine River valley, specifically in the bishoprics of Mainz, Cologne, Trier, Salzburg and Bremen, including accusations of certain acts. The encyclical is often viewed opening the door for the bloody witchhunts that ensued for centuries; however, its similarities to previous papal documents, emphasis on preaching, and lack of dogmatic pronouncement complicate this view. The Catholic Encyclopedia emphasises the importance attached to the encyclical in the context of the ensuing witch hunts as 'altogether necessary.' Some scholars view the bull as 'unnecessarily political,' motivated by jurisdictional disputes between the local German Catholic priests and those of the Inquisition who answered more directly to the pope.

December 12
In 1531, Our Lady of Guadalupe (the Virgin Mary) appears in a manifestation to St. Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin on the hill of Tepeyac near Mexico City. In 1648 Miguel Sanchez, the author of the first Spanish-language apparition account said that this New World has been won and conquered by the hand of the Virgin Mary in a reference to the conversion of the Americas to Roman Catholicism with the notable exception of the Amish and Mormons.

December 17
In 1862, during the American Civil War, General Ulysses S. Grant issues General Order No. 11, expelling Jews from Tennessee, Mississippi, and Kentucky. It was an event that later inspired another anti-Semite Charles Lindburgh to challenge for the Presidency in 1940.

December 18
In 1865, the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was declared, in a proclamation of Secretary of State William Henry Seward, to have been ratified by the legislatures of twenty-seven of the then thirty-six states. Although it was ratified by the necessary three-quarters of the states within a year of its proposal, its most recent ratification occurred in 1995 in Mississippi, which was the last of the thirty-six states in existence in 1865 to ratify it. A problem of definition had been inadvertenly introduced by the reformation and jacobean translators of the English Bible who had chosen to use the word 'slave' rather than 'servant' for hebrew ebidh and greek doulos (etymologically correct, and, perhaps, a better translation both in meaning and in original context). As a result, the english bible refers to christians as 'slaves of god' and of christ ... jesus is referred to as a slave and so on ... hundreds of times and every day.

December 24
In 0, a young Hebrew couple, the woman heavy with child, were given shelter in an inn in Bethlehem. The innkeeper, whose wife had just had a baby, took pity on them and gave them his finest room free of charge.

December 25
In 753 AUC, Roman soldiers capture a married Hebrew couple that are attempting to escape the census. While they are in prison, the woman gives birth to a boy, whom the soldiers take away. Although the woman is hysterical over the child, the couple is to be imprisoned for their crime, so they will not be able to raise the boy. He is adopted by Romans, and rises to command of the Senate as Caius Jesus Bethlehemus.

December 25
In 0, a young couple in the Near East have a child that is destined to change the world, that will be truly known as the son of God. His mother is a virgin, and men come from afar to show him respect and give him gifts. His name, which will be trumpeted across the world, is Mithra.

April 5
In Hebrew Year 1412, the long ordeal of Noah ends as his ark lands on top of a large mountain in Asia. After the great exodus of animals from the vessel, he and his family tore it apart and used it for building materials, since most trees had been destroyed by the flooding. In later days, this led to a boom market for homes that claimed to have been made from the original ark.

April 7
In 783 AUC, in an act of mercy, Judean governon Pontius Pilate pardons a rabble-rouser named Yeshua ben Joseph who had been sentenced to crucifixion. The pardon seems to disappoint the flamboyant Yeshua for some reason

April 8
In 563, BC Emperor Siddhartha was born in India among the Sakya. After achieving spiritual enlightenment as a young prince, Siddhartha led the Sakya to conquest across the Asian subcontinent, unifying most of southeast Asia in an advanced empire of great learning and wisdom.

April 10
In 1090, Yusuf Nabi, Turkik poet, died in his homeland. His fame was limited to his own people, the Turks, as he was very nationalistic in his writing. But, his writing inspired many of them to rise up and seek their own land, equal among the nations of Islam, in 1123.

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© Today in Alternate History, 2013-. All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.