death

#death

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Queen Victoria's Impossible Standards
The love affairs and extravagant lifestyle of Prince Edward (the future King Edward VII) often offended his mother, Queen Victoria, who excluded him from participation in public affairs. His youthful indiscretions as Prince of Wales, however, were largely a reaction to Victoria's impossibly virtuous (Victorian) standards. Lady Beaconsfield once suggested that Queen Victoria's son must be a great comfort to her. "Comfort?" the queen replied. "Why, I caught him smoking, a fortnight [two weeks] after his dear father died!" [Victoria later mellowed slightly. In 1886, her Foreign Secretary, Lord Rosebery, urged her to inject as much pomp as possible into the opening of the Indian and Colonial Exhibition. "With all the pomp you like," she replied, "as long as I ...
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Castlereagh's Epitaph
Castlereagh was not universally admired for his key role in the formation of a political union between Ireland and Great Britain in 1800. Among his detractors was George Gordon (Lord Byron), who is said to have written Castlereagh's epitaph:Posterity will ne'er surveya nobler grave than this.Here lie the bones of CastlereaghStop, traveler, and piss.
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Henry Arthur Jones - deathbed decision
As he lay dying, Henry Arthur Jones was asked whether he would prefer his niece or his nurse to spend the night at his bedside. "The prettier," he replied. "Now fight for it!"
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Ben Jonson: Upstanding Poet
The poet Ben Jonson once asked his benefactor, Charles I of England, for a square foot for burial space in Westminster Abbey—which is exactly what he got: Jonson was buried in an upright position. [A certain Sir John Young, who happened to be in Westminster Abbey when Jonson's grave was being covered over, paid the mason eighteen pence to inscribe four words upon the gravestone: "O rare Ben Jonson." Some scholars believe that the first words should have been joined together to form the Latin word 'orare' (pray). The epitaph would then translate as "Pray for Ben Jonson."]
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Why Juang-Zu Opted For A Simple Burial
Juang-Zu was a 4th Century BC Chinese Taoist philosopher. When his disciples elected to give him an elaborate burial, he nixed the idea. "Above ground I shall be food for kites [birds]," he remarked. "Below I shall be food for mole-crickets and ants. Why rob one to feed the other?"
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Alexander Graham Bell's Last Words
As professor of vocal physiology at Boston University, Alexander Graham Bell taught many deaf students, including Helen Keller and his future wife Mabel Hubbard (with whom he lived for forty-five years). One day while tending to her husband after a long illness, Mabel whispered, "Don't leave me." By way of reply, Bell traced the sign for "No"—and promptly expired.[When Bell died on August 4, 1922, millions of telephones across North America (those served by the Bell System) went silent for one minute in his honor.]
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John Barrymore - Open Grave
While attending a funeral one day, John Barrymore noticed an elderly gentleman lingering by the side of the open grave. "I guess," Barrymore told the frail old man, "it hardly pays to go home."
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John Barrymore - Death Bed Confession
Toward the end of his life, a hospitalized John Barrymore—aware that he was dying—called for a priest, who came to his side accompanied by an old and extremely repulsive nurse. Asked whether he had anything to confess, Barrymore said, "Yes, Father, I confess to having carnal thoughts." "About whom?" asked the priest. "About her!" Barrymore replied, pointing to the nurse...
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Once More, Maurice...
As Maurice Barrymore was being laid to rest, the straps supporting the lowered coffin became twisted and the coffin had to be raised again for an adjustment to be made. "How like Father," Lionel Barrymore whispered as the coffin reappeared, "a curtain call!"
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Lord Melbourne - Another bishop dead
While Lord Melbourne took little interest in religious matters, he frequently ran into difficulties over the appointment of bishops. He was particularly irked by a certain bishop whose death entailed a vacancy in the House of Lords—which it was his duty as prime minister to fill. "Damn it!" he exclaimed. "Another bishop dead! I think they die just to vex me."