23rd February

1455 Gutenberg Bible first printed with moveable type – so print some letters

1633 Samuel Pepys born – so start a diary

1685 Handel born – his most famous works are Messiah, and Music for the Royal Fireworks

Why not listen to his Water Music while doing water experiments?


Brunei National Day:

Brunei comes from ‘Baru nah!’, meaning ‘It’s there!’, which the founder shouted when he saw it.

There isn’t much known about it before Europe discovered it, but it seemed to have been owned by the Indonesian empire of Majapahit, and was Islamic.

Spain invaded in 1578, but the sailors caught cholera and left again.

In 1846 Brunei was having a little conflict over who should be Sultan, and Britain thought ‘Yeah that’s totally our business’ and attacked, but we didn’t take Brunei for ourselves.

In the 1880s the Sultan granted land to the British adventurer James Brooke, who founded Sarawak and became the first White Rajah. He and his heirs took more land and Brunei grew smaller.

In 1888 the Sultan asked to become a British Protectorate to stop the White Rajahs taking more land. Britain signed a treaty with them then totally didn’t help them, and Brunei carried on getting smaller until it was just the two little chunks it is today. What Britain did do was send in ‘advisers’ (or, ‘colonists’).

From 1929 Brunei found its river Seria to be a valuable source of oil.

In WWII Japan took Brunei and Britain didn’t help cos we were busy. Australian and American forces bombed Brunei until the Japanese surrendered in 1945.

After WWII a British Military Administration helped revive the economy and put out the oil well fires started by the Japanese as they left.

Brunei gained independence from the UK in 1984.

Tłusty Czwartek, Poland’s Fat Thursday – the last Thursday before Lent – there are a lot of pączki in Bognor Regis: sugar-dusted, iced, sprinkled with dried orange zest, with fillings of thick vanilla creme, strawberry jam, apple compote.

Other events that might inspire your play today:

  • Russian Day of the Defenders of the Motherland – celebrating the formation of the Red Army to defend Russia in 1919.
  • 1905 Rotary Club founded in America
  • 1927 Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle first described

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