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    FEBRUARY 27: THIS DAY IN HISTORY

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    IN THE WORLD:

    * French publicist and religious philosopher, abbot Robert de LAMENNAIS (1782-1854), a co-founder of Christian socialism, died 150 years ago. His main works are "Words of a Believer" and "Esquisse of Philosophy".

    * 135 years ago, in 1869 the US Congress adopted the 15th amendment to the Constitution prohibiting to restrict and deprive Afro-Americans of the right to vote. It was ratified on March 30, 1970.

    * Canadian physiologist Charles BEST (1899-1978) was born 105 years ago. In 1921 Charles Best and Frederick Banting invented insulin. Best was the first to use anticoagulants against thrombi.

    * 71 years ago, in 1933 the Nazis set fire to Reichstag. It marked the beginning of terror against German democratic organizations.

    * Austrian zoologist and animal psychologist, Nobel Prize winner Konrad LORENZ (1903-1989), a co-founder of ethology (the science on animal behavior), died 15 years ago. He is the author of the book "Man Meets Dog".

    * Several dozens of Armenians were massacred in Sumgait (Azerbaijan) 16 years ago, in 1988.

    IN RUSSIA:

    * War pilot Pyotr NESTEROV (1887-1996) was born 117 years ago. He was the first to loop the loop. In 1911 he constructed a glider of his own design and worked out a project of an airplane but failed to accomplish its construction. Nesterov was killed in an air fight on August 26, 1914 making the first ram attack.

    * Soviet physicist, academician Yuli KHARITON (1904-1996) was born 100 years ago. He is the author of fundamental works in the spheres of atomic energy and nuclear technologies, the founder and head of the research school in the theory of explosives and one of the creators of nuclear weapons.

    * 86 years ago, in 1918 the Polytechnic Museum hosted the Election of the Poetry King. Igor Severyanin was elected the king. Vladimir Mayakovsky and Konstantin Balmont took the second and third places.

    * The Nikolayevskaya (St. Nicholas) railway between Moscow and St. Petersburg was renamed Oktyabrskaya (October) railway 81 years ago, in 1923.

    * Hero of the Soviet Union, soldier of a guards rifle regiment Alexander MATROSOV (1924-1943) gave life for the Motherland 61 years ago. He threw his body against the embrasure of a Nazi strong-point in the battle of the village of Chernushki (the Pskov region). Over 200 similar feats were accomplished during the Great Patriotic War.

    * 38 years ago, in 1966 the Soviet interplanetary station Venera-2 passed the Venus at a distance of 24,000 kilometers and entered a heliocentric orbit.

    * The Orthodox Church commemorates St. Cyril, Equal-to-the-Apostles and Teacher of the Slavs. He is honored as the founder of the first Slavonic alphabet.

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