woensdag 1 januari 2014

Britain's 'Downton Law' Would End Gender Discrimination for Nobility Titles



Soon, you may not need to marry your cousin to save the title

For all of his wealth, land, servants, and evening jackets, Downton Abbey’sRobert Crawley, the fictional Earl of Grantham, lacked one very important asset: a male heir. Under the British law of entail, which dates back to the Middle Ages, none of Lord Grantham’s three daughters could inherit his property or title.

Instead, his earlship would pass to Matthew Crawley, a distant cousin. So began the plot line of Downton’s most delicious soapy couple: Lord and Lady Grantham’s attempting to fix up Matthew with their daughter Mary, Mary resisting, Mary finally falling in love at an inopportune time, and so forth.

The uncertain fate of Downton provided for hours of crumpet-munching TV drama, but now it’s become fodder for British aristocrats who want to change the country’s anachronistic primogeniture rules.

A new bill making its way through the House of Lords would for the first time allow noble fathers to pass their titles onto their daughters, the Daily Telegraph reports. The name of the legislation? “The Downton Law,” naturally.

The bill was originally written with “peer” titles, such as earls and dukes, in mind, but it was recently amended to include baronets, a non-noble title that’s sort of like a super-knight. The Telegraph describes how the current system impacts baronets and their female progeny, including making parents disappointed that their newborns are girls.
The campaign to include baronets was led by Sir Nicholas Stuart Taylor Bt [the baronet abbreviation], who has two daughters and no heir. If the law is not passed, the Stuart Taylor baronetcy will become extinct. His daughter, Virginia Stuart Taylor, 24, is a graduate recruit at an international telecoms business and runs an award-winning travel blog in her spare time. Her parents were so disappointed not to have an heir that her mother cried when she learnt she had given birth to a girl. Miss Stuart Taylor said: “I don’t mind if I am the first, the 10th, the 100th [baronetess] but I’ve been brought up the rest of my life — apart from those first years of disappointment of not being a boy — as completely equal to men.
The newspaper added that not only would the law put an end to de jure sex discrimination among Britain’s upper classes, it will also, “do much to stop the historical titles dying out for want of an heir.” Yes, thank goodness for that.

The legislation would also allow dukes, earls, viscounts, and other hereditary peers to pass their titles along a female line of succession.

Granny will have a conniption, I dare say.

Source: www.theatlantic.com

zondag 21 juli 2013

Belgium greets new king Phillipe after father abdicates

King Philippe I became Belgium's seventh monarch on Sunday's national day after his father Albert abdicated as the head of this fractured nation.
After he took the oath at the parliament filled with representatives of the six million Dutch-speaking Flemings and 4.5 million francophones, Philippe insisted "the wealth of our nation and our institutions consists in turning our diversity into a strength."

The ceremony capped a day of transition which started when Philippe's father, the 79-year-old Albert, signed away his rights as the kingdom's largely ceremonial ruler at the royal palace in the presence of Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo, who holds the political power in this 183-year-old parliamentary democracy.
Less than two hours later, the nation got a new king when Philippe, 53, pledged to abide by Belgium's laws and constitution.

While crowds of well-wishers cheered the royal family's every move Sunday, far from everybody in Belgium was happy with the new king.
One Flemish separatist group, the Flemish Interest party, boycotted the parliamentary ceremony, while the legislature's biggest party, the N-VA New Flemish Alliance, sent only a limited delegation without its leader, Bart De Wever.

"We are full-blooded democrats and the purest form of democracy is the republic," said Jan Jambon, the parliamentary leader of the party, which has surged to become the main opposition party seeking Flemish independence through transition.

Their absence also highlighted one of the biggest challenges Philippe will face in his reign — how to remain relevant as a unitary symbol in a nation ever more drifting apart between the northern Flemings and the southern francophones.
Philippe made no attempt to paper over those cracks, instead casting the country's division as one of its strengths.

"Time and again we find the balance between unity and diversity," King Philippe said. "Belgium's strength is precisely that we make room for our differences."
Unlike a disturbance during the oath-taking by King Albert 20 years ago, when one legislator shouted "Long live the European Republic," Sunday's ceremony in the packed legislature was flawless, with Albert and Philippe's wife, Queen Mathilde, looking on as he confidently took the oath.

'A great head of state'

Philippe has long been contested as a worthy successor of Albert, but after years of wooden and timid public performances, the silver-haired, bespectacled monarch came over as confident and pressure proof.

"Belgium is modernizing itself and it gives me joy," Albert said. In a rare show of public affection for his son, the two embraced warmly when Albert signed away his rights as the kingdom's largely ceremonial ruler at the royal palace.
Under crystal chandeliers in a gilded hall at the royal palace, Prime Minister Di Rupo called Albert "a great head of state" and told the outgoing king, "You are closing an important page in the history of our country."

Albert announced his abdication plans less than three weeks ago, so there was little time to turn the occasion into a huge international event. No foreign royals were at the ceremony. Since the royal transition coincides with Belgium's national day celebrations, a military parade had already been planned.

Philippe will face a tough task in the coming months. The fractious nation, divided by language, holds parliamentary elections in June 2014 amid calls for even more autonomy for the language groups.

After the last elections in 2010, it took a record 541 days before a government could be formed amid bickering about how much more power should be sapped from the central state to profit the separate language groups. Then, as likely next year, the N-VA will play a key role.

Unlike his five predecessors, Albert tried to avoid politics as much as possible and Philippe is expected to do likewise. Philippe has been groomed for the job as a leader of foreign trade delegations over the past two decades. "He is a very wise person, a person who is very well prepared," said EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, who attended the ceremony. "He knows the politics of Belgium and Europe very well."

zaterdag 25 mei 2013

LE SCEAU DE FRANCE, TITRE NOBILIAIRE ET CHANGEMENT DE NOM

Dans son titre, le directeur des affaires civiles et du sceau a l’honneur d’avoir en commun avec le Garde des Sceaux, l’usage du mot « sceau ». Dans le cas du ministre, ce terme est néanmoins utilisé au pluriel alors qu’il est au singulier pour le directeur. On pourrait voir là l’affirmation de la supériorité du ministre sur son subordonné. Cette explication est bien sûr exacte mais nécessite d’être précisée.

Dans le cas du Garde, le mot « sceaux » renvoie aux cachets qui scellent les lois. Le pluriel souligne que le ministre garde tous les sceaux, ceux des rois qui ont fait la France, ceux des Républiques passées et ceux de la Vème République. Cette variété des sceaux renvoie à la tradition ancienne selon laquelle chaque sceau de souverain était brisé à sa mort ou biffé à sa chute. On retrouve d’ailleurs toujours cette pratique du brisement dans celui de l’anneau du souverain pontife à la mort de celui-ci. 

vrijdag 24 mei 2013

Adellijke gunsten in België

Datum: 16 juli 2012

Op voordracht van de heer vice-eerste minister en minister van Buitenlandse Zaken Didier Reynders, heeft de Koning bij koninklijke besluiten van 13 juli 2012 de volgende adellijke gunsten verleend:

* vergunning van de persoonlijke titel van barones aan mevrouwen Ingrid DAUBECHIES, Kristine DE MULDER en Simone WEINBERGER, weduwe van de heer David SUeSSKIND;
* vergunning van de persoonlijke titel van baron aan jonkheer Pierre-Olivier BECKERS en aan de heren Thierry BOON-FALLEUR, Roger COEKELBERGS, Desire COLLEN, Jef COLRUYT, Olivier DE SCHUTTER, Julien DE WILDE, Didier MATRAY, Arie VAN LYSEBETH en Piet VANTHEMSCHE;
* vergunning van de persoonlijke titel van ridder aan jonkheer Nicolas de COCK de RAMEYEN en aan de heren Guy de CORDES, Christian DELLOYE, Raphael DE RYCKE, Frans DE WEER, Geert GIJS, Philippe SAMYN, Pierre GOLDSCHMIDT en Luc VANDEWALLE.

Mevrouw Ingrid DAUBECHIES, doctor in de fysica (Vrije Universiteit Brussel), is hoogleraar wiskunde eerst aan de Princeton University en daarna aan de Duke University (USA). In 2010 werd ze verkozen tot voorzitster van de "International Mathematical Union". Ze kreeg wereldwijde bekendheid met haar "wavelets" (gebruikt bij beeldcompressie).

Mevrouw Kristine DE MULDER is directeur-generaal van "Europalia International" sinds 2003.

Mevrouw Simone SUeSSKIND, geboren WEINBERGER, weduwe van de heer David SUeSSKIND, is sociologe van opleiding (Universite Libre de Bruxelles) en gewezen voorzitster van het "Centre communautaire laic juif" (CCLJ) in Brussel; als stichtend voorzitster van "Actions in the Mediterranean" wil ze de dialoog tussen Israel en de Palestijnen bevorderen alsook tussen joden en arabieren in Belgie.

Jonkheer Pierre-Olivier BECKERS is gedelegeerd bestuurder en voorzitter van het Uitvoerend Comite van de Delhaize Groep sinds 1999 en voorzitter van het Belgisch Olympisch en Interfederaal Comite sinds 2005.

Dr. Thierry BOON-FALLEUR, specialist in immunologie, is emeritus hoogleraar van de "Universite Catholique de Louvain" en gewezen directeur van de Brusselse tak van het Ludwig Instituut voor Kankeronderzoek en het "Institut international de Pathologie cellulaire et moleculaire" ('Institut de
Duve'); hij is een internationaal erkende autoriteit op gebied van kankeronderzoek en laureaat van talrijke prestigieuze prijzen, waaronder de Francqui Prijs (1990) en de Prijs Louis Jeantet (1994).

De heer Roger COEKELBERGS, lid van de Weerstand, doctor in de fysische en scheikundige wetenschappen, emeritus hoogleraar van de Koninklijke Militaire School, was jarenlang voorzitter van het Nationaal Gedenkteken van het Fort van Breendonk.

Dr. Desire COLLEN, emeritus hoogleraar van de Katholieke Univeristeit Leuven, is een wereldautoriteit inzake medisch onderzoek. Hij stichtte ThromboGenics, waarvan hij achtereenvolgens CEO en voorzitter van de Raad van Bestuur was. Zijn wetenschappelijk werk werd bekroond met tal van eredoctoraten en prijzen, o.m. de Francqui Prijs (1984), de Prijs Louis Jeantet (1984) en de Interbrew Baillet-Latour Gezondheidsprijs (2005).

De heer Jef COLRUYT is voorzitter van de Raad van Bestuur van Colruyt N.V. sinds 1994 en werd verkozen tot Manager van het Jaar in 2002 (Trends).

De heer Olivier DE SCHUTTER is doctor in de rechten, hoogleraar aan de "Universite Catholique de Louvain", speciale VN-verslaggever inzake het recht op voedsel (2008-2011) en secretaris-generaal van de "International Federation for Human Rights" sinds 2004.

De heer Julien DE WILDE was CEO van Alcatel Bell en Bekaert vooraleer bestuursvoorzitter van Agfa-Gevaert en Nyrstar te worden; hij is erevoorzitter van Agoria en voorzitter van het Prins Albert Fonds.

Meester Didier MATRAY is advocaat en stafhouder van de Orde van Advocaten van de Balie van Luik, regent van de Nationale Bank van Belgie en bestuurder van de Belgisch-Luxemburgs-Duitse Kamer van Koophandel.

De heer Arie VAN LYSEBETH, gewezen directeur van het Koninklijk Conservatorium te Brussel, is voorzitter van de Jury van de Internationale Muziekwedstrijd Koningin Elisabeth van Belgie.

De heer Piet VANTHEMSCHE, dierenarts van opleiding, was gedelegeerd bestuurder van het Federaal Agentschap voor de Veiligheid van de Voedselketen vooraleer in 2007 voorzitter van de Boerenbond te worden.

Jonkheer Nicolas de COCK de RAMEYEN is thans ondervoorzitter van "Malteser International" (Internationaal agentschap voor humanitaire hulp van de Orde van Malta), waarvan hij het voorzitterschap waarnam van bij de oprichting in 2005 tot 2011.

De heer Guy de CORDES, gewezen voorzitter van onder meer "Union miniere" en van de "Compagnie immobiliere de Belgique", zet zich als vrijwilliger samen met zijn echtgenote en familie in voor tal van sociale werken.

Dr. Christian DELLOYE is orthopedisch en oncologisch chirurg, professor aan de "Universite Catholique de Louvain", pionier inzake beendertransplantaties en skeletreconstructies en oprichter van de eerste beender- en weefselbank in Europa; hij is stichtend lid en voorzitter van de "European
Association of MusculoSkeletal Transplantation".

De heer Raphael DE RYCKE is sinds 2006 gedelegeerd bestuurder van het Provincialaat der Broeders van Liefde (actief in de sectoren onderwijs, buitengewoon onderwijs, welzijn en verzorgingsinstellingen); hij is ondervoorzitter van Zorgnet Vlaanderen en bestuurder van tal van organisaties in de sector van de geestelijke gezondheidszorg.

Dr. Frans DE WEER is chirurg, stichter en voorzitter van Artsen Zonder Vakantie en zeer actief bij "Caritas International" en bij de Orde van Malta.

De heer Geert GIJS is diensthoofd Crisisbeheer van de Federale Overheidsdienst Volksgezondheid en hoofdcooerdinator van B-FAST (Belgian First Aid and Support Team).

De heer Philippe SAMYN is architect met realisaties in binnen- en buitenland en corresponderend lid van de "Academie royale des Sciences, des Arts et des Lettres de Belgique".

De heer Pierre GOLDSCHMIDT, doctor in de toegepaste wetenschappen, was van 1999 tot 2005 adjunct-directeur-generaal en hoofd van het Departement Waarborgen van het Internationaal Atoomagentschap, dat in 2005 de Nobelprijs van de Vrede kreeg.

De heer Luc VANDEWALLE maakte vooral carriere in de ING Groep, waarvan hij gedelegeerd bestuurder was. Hij is voorzitter van het Streekfonds West-Vlaanderen van de Koning Boudewijn Stichting, voorzitter van de Beschutte Werkplaats Waak en voorzitter van het Centrum voor Algemeen Welzijnswerk Stimulans.

dinsdag 30 april 2013

Historical news - Banking patriarch Guy de Rothschild dead at 98



PARIS - Baron Guy de Rothschild, who managed his family's French banking empire and saw it taken over first during the Nazi occupation and then by a Socialist government 40 years later, has died. He was 98.
Rothschild, also known for his family's renowned wines and his thoroughbred racehorses, died Tuesday in Paris, his family said in an announcement in Le Figaro daily on Thursday. The cause of death was not given.
Guy de Rothschild was born May 21, 1909, in Paris' upscale 8th district, or arrondissement, into the House of Rothschild, whose complex family tree included financiers of European royalty and some of France's most prominent names.

After the war, Rothschild rebuilt his family's financial empire, and went on to chair de Rothschild Freres bank from 1967 until 1979.During the Nazi occupation, the collaborationist French government stripped his family of its French nationality -- and its assets -- because they were Jewish. Rothschild fled to the United States and later to London, where he joined Gen. Charles de Gaulle's resistance force.

In 1981, the bank switched to government hands through nationalization under Socialist President Francois Mitterrand. Rothschild left France and briefly moved to New York, after writing an editorial in Le Monde accusing the Socialists of falling victim to French anti-Semitism. Later his son David followed his father's example and began reconstructing the family banking network which in 1987 became Rothschild & Cie Bank. Guy de Rothschild founded and presided over the United Jewish Welfare Fund, France's primary Jewish philanthropic agency from 1950 to 1982. He and his second wife, Marie-Helene, were stars of France's elite social scene until she died in 1990. He is survived by sons David and Edouard among other relatives. A funeral service was planned in Paris' main synagogue on June 21.

Published Thursday, June 14, 2007 7:01AM EDT 

Source: www.washingtonpost.com 

After more than 120 years, a king for the Netherlands



Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands abdicated the throne on Tuesday, ending 33 years as the country's monarch and paving the way for her eldest son, Willem-Alexander, to become the first Dutch king in more than 120 years. The 75-year-old monarch handed over power in a constitutionally ordained ceremony. The transfer became official as she signed the "instrument of abdication." In a televised address Monday night, the queen said she knows the new royal couple will have the loving trust of the nation. "My oldest son will now take over a beautiful task which is filled with great responsibility," the queen said. "I am absolutely convinced that Willem-Alexander will be committed in faithful devotion to be a good king and to do what a good King is asked to do." Beatrix stepped down on the national holiday known as Queen's Day, an opportunity for people across the Netherlands to dress up and party. The investiture of the new king will be the high point of a year of celebrations marking the end of the Napoleonic occupation in 1813. The queen announced her abdication in January, saying it was time for a new generation to lead. "I have always considered it as an extraordinary privilege to be able to put a big part of my life at the service of our country and in accordance with my task to add substance to my kingship," said Beatrix, who acceded to the throne when her mother, Queen Juliana, abdicated in 1980.

City turns orange to celebrate new king Dutch Queen Beatrix to abdicate throne
"Until today, this beautiful task has given me a lot of satisfaction. It is inspiring to feel close to people, to sympathize in grievances and share times of joy and national pride." The Dutch media has speculated that the queen was abdicating to spend more time with her second son Friso, who was injured in an avalanche at an Austrian ski resort last year. He remains in a coma in a London hospital.

A king for the 21st century
Prince Willem-Alexander, 46, was educated in Wales and Holland, where he earned a history degree at Leiden University. He served in the Dutch Royal Navy from 1985 to 1987. As Prince of Orange -- the title given to the person first in line to the Dutch throne -- he has been interested in sustainability and innovation. He is married to Princess Máxima, who was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She has a degree in economics and has worked for HSBC and Deutsche Bank. The couple have been married for 11 years and have three daughters. Last week, the couple gave their first joint TV interview in which Willem set out how he intended to rule. "I want to be a king who is first of all traditional, built on the tradition of my predecessors, who stands for continuity and also for stability in the country ... but also a king who in the 21st century can bind together and represent society as a whole." Asked how he intended to do that, Willem told the NOS state broadcaster: "By being present where you think people need support or help, by giving extra attention and presence to worthwhile events and by supporting people who are in need."

Notable absence
One notable absence at Tuesday's ceremony will be the new queen's father, Jorge Zorreguieta, who was a minister during the 1976-1983 Argentinian military dictatorship. Princess Maxima said her family would not attend her swearing-in as queen because of her father's controversial past. "This is a constitutional event, when my husband becomes king and my father doesn't belong there, especially if there are issues," the princess told NOS. "He remains my father, we still enjoy our private moments." Source: CNN

maandag 9 juli 2012

Dr. Ralf G. Jahn - Das Schicksal von Schillers Schädel

» It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.« (Arthur Conan Doyle: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes). »Es ist ein schwerer Fehler, Theorien aufzustellen, bevor man Tatsachen hat. Dann fängt man unmerklich an, die Tatsachen zu verdrehen, bis sie zu den Theorien passen, statt die Theorien den Tatsachen anzupassen.« (Arthur Conan Doyle: Die Abenteuer des Sherlock Holmes).

Seit Mai 2008 ist bekannt, daß die Friedrich v. Schiller zugeschriebenen Gebeine in der Weimarer Fürstengruft nicht dem Dichter gehörten. "Der Friedrich-Schiller-Code", das interdis-ziplinäre Wissenschaftsprojekt des Mitteldeutschen Rundfunks (MDR) in Zusammenarbeit mit der Klassik Stiftung Weimar, hatte dies zweifelsfrei bewiesen. 150 Jahre lang galt Schil-lers Schädel als echt, auch wenn sich der Wissenschaftlerstreit darüber immer wieder entzün-dete. Das hat Fragen aufgeworfen, die zuvor niemand stellte. Wieso könnte der Fürstengruft-Schädel ein Zwilling Schillers sein, wenn doch anthropologisch Doppelgänger extrem selten sind? Was geschah mit Schillers Schädel? Wo blieb Schillers Skelett? Läßt sich ein Schädel-raub beweisen? Wie groß ist der Kreis der Verdächtigen, die zu einer solchen Tat die Kennt-nisse und Möglichkeiten gehabt hätten? Wohin führen die Spuren? Was sagen die Quellen, und wo weisen sie eventuell Leerstellen auf? Dr. Ralf G. Jahn, Historischer Fachberater des MDR und der Klassik Stiftung Weimar bei den Fernsehdokumentationen ,,Der Friedrich-Schiller-Code" und ,,Schillers Schädel-Schicksal", außerdem Co-Moderator beim ,,Goethezeitportal", beantwortet diese Fragen und andere.

Link

Source: grin.com

donderdag 5 juli 2012

Historisch nieuws: de valse hertog van Abrantes - Kat in de zak

Rocheraux, Jean-Andoche Junot, duc d'Arrantès,
Musée national des châteaux de Malmaison et de Bois-Préau
PARIJS 9 februari 1979— De schoonvader van prinses Caroline van Monaco, Michel Junot, moet ten overstaan van de rechtbank van Parijs bevestigen dat er geen bewijs bestaat voor de adeldom die hij opeist. Bovendien moet hij schriftelijk beloven dat hij in het vervolg niet meer zal beweren dat er blauw bloed door zijn aderen vloeit.

De president van de rechtbank deed het voorstel dat de strijdvraag tussen de onbetwistbaar ,,echte" hertog van Abrantes en „de heer" Michel Junot uit de wereld wordt geholpen door de ondertekening van een officieel stuk. In dit stuk zou de vader van prinses Carolines echtgenoot Philippe Junot vastleggen, dat hij er geen bewijs voor heeft dat hij, zoals hij hardnekkig staande houdt, afstamt van de Napoleontische generaal Junot, Duc d'Abrantes. De beide partijen moeten voor 7 maart hun standpunt bepalen. De zaak was aanhangig gemaakt door Hertog Maurice Abrantes, die er bezwaar tegen heeft dat Michel Junot zich telg uit zijn geslacht noemt.


Toelichting
De titel van hertog van Abrantes was een Spaanse adellijke titel, op 23 maart 1642 toegekend door koning Philips IV van Spanje aan de Portugese edelman Alfonso de Lencastre, markies van Porto Seguro. Een tweede toekenning in de vorm van een erkenning (die niets met de voorgaande van doen heeft) vond plaats op 9 december 1753 door koning Jozef I van Portugal aan Ana Maria Catarina Henriqueta de Lorena, 3e markiezin van Abranntes en 9e gravin van Penaguião. Als gevolg van de weigering van de Portugese continentale blokkade zond Napoleon generaal Jean Andoche Junot  met een leger om het land binnen te vallen. Junot stak de grens richting Lissabon over bij Abrantes, waar het leger een tijdelijke  rustplaats inrichtte. Napoleon kende aan Junot hiervoor in 1808 de titel Duc d'Abrantès toe als een overwinningstitel. De titel is in Portugal nooit erkend. De titel is sinds 1982 uitgestorven.

Bronnen:

Nobreza de Portugal e do Brasil, Vol. II, pp. 203-208, Lisbon, Zairol, 1989.

Chartrand, René. Vimeiro 1808. London: Osprey Publishing, 2001. ISBN 1-84176-309-8

Reformatorisch Dagblad, 9 februari 1979

Haythornthwaite, Philip. Napoleon's Commanders (1) c1792-1809. London: Osprey Publishing, 2001. ISBN 1-84176-055-2

vrijdag 6 april 2012

SMOM vs. Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, The Ecumenical Order


Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta v. Fla. Priory of Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, The Ecumenical Order, 816 F. Supp. 2d 1290 (S.D. Fla. 2011)

The Religious Order Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta (SMOM) filed suit against another religious order, the Florida Priory of Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jersusalem, Knights of Malta, The Ecumenical Order (the Florida Priory) for trademark infringement, false advertising, unfair competition and deceptive trade practices. The Florida Priory counterclaimed for cancellation of several of SMOM’s trademark registrations. The court held a bench trial and found for the Florida Priory on all counts except as to SMOM’s unregistered trademark.

The court first discussed the history of the parties, dating back to the late eleventh century AD. The Court focussed on issues of U.S. Trademark Law, and rendered its opinion in favor of the Ecumenical Order and against SMOM accordingly. In the process of rendering its opinion, however, the Court had to examine SMOM's claim that The Ecumenical Order was guilty of false advertising by presenting itself as the original Order. In its Conclusions of Law, the Court characteristically decided that: "References by the Florida Priory (of the Ecumenical Order) to a shared history with SMOM are perfectly appropriate, as the organizations shared a history prior to 1798." (page 17). With this conclusion the Court unmistakably signaled that the two Orders share a history prior to the original Order's departure from Malta in 1798 AD. No other Order of Saint John has been found, in modern jurisprudence, to have an equivalent claim with SMOM to the original Order. The Court declined to act as an arbiter of religious issues. Instead, the court shifted focus to the history of SMOM’s trademark registrations. Although SMOM’s trademarks had received incontestable status, the Florida Priory argued that the registered marks were procured by fraud because SMOM failed to disclose to the USPTO the existence of the Florida Priory and other religious orders that were using the same or similar names and marks prior to and at the time SMOM completed its trademark applications.

The court analogized the case to a recent Supreme Court decision in Global-Tech Appliances, Inc. v. SEB S.A., 131 S. Ct. 2060 (2011), where the Supreme Court held that the appropriate standard to determine active inducement of patent infringement is “willful blindness.” As the Supreme Court explained, a “willfully blind defendant is one who takes deliberate actions to avoid confirming a high probability of wrongdoing and who can almost be said to have actually known the critical facts.” 131 S. Ct. at 2070-71. The court found that the willful blindness standard also applies to trademark cases.

Here, the court was persuaded that SMOM purposefully hired an attorney to prosecute their trademarks who had no knowledge of the existence of other religious orders with similar names and origins to SMOM in order skirt the requirement that it disclose any other organizations known to be using similar marks. The court cancelled several of SMOM’s registrations and found for the Florida Priory on all other counts, leaving to the USPTO the question of the validity of SMOM’s unregistered trademark.

Source: Kilpatrick Townsend attorneys at law

zaterdag 25 februari 2012

Die Ahnenprobe in der Vormoderne


Proofs of ancestry were a useful means of selection applied by late medieval and early modern elites and gained considerable importance in the course of the growing juridification of pre-modern hierarchical concepts of order. They provided proof of social affiliation in different contexts and were also used by certain groups for securing exclusive access to material and politico-social resources. Tombstones, portraits, objects of day-to-day use and buildings were visual representations of such proofs of ancestry.

In this collection of papers, the concept ›proof of ancestry‹ is described as a pre-modern idea of order with constitutive value and its fundamental importance for the Estate society is discussed. The various representations of proofs of ancestry, the communicative practice and the transformation of its use within and beyond the European context are discussed in historical and art-historical perspectives on the basis of case studies from various contexts. The topics covered deal with research questions on ritual, knowledge, kinship, decision-making and integration processes as well as strategies of distinction in estate assemblies, exclusive corporations and at the princely court.

rhema-verlag.de

Elizabeth Harding, Michael Hecht (Hgg.) Die Ahnenprobe in der Vormoderne
Selektion – Initiation – Repräsentation

Symbolische Kommunikation und gesellschaftliche Wertesysteme – Schriftenreihe des Sonderforschungsbereichs 496, Band 37

2011, 450 Seiten, 16 Beiträge, 91/107 Abbildungen (91 Abbildung in s/w, 16 davon auch in Farbe), Harteinband

2011, 450 pages, 16 essays, 91/107 figures (91 figures in b/w, 16 of those also in full color), hardcover

ISBN 978-3-86887-006-0 Preis/price EUR 58,–

Goldene Pracht - Ausstellung zeigt Goldschmiedekunst in Westfalen - Landesmuseum und in der Domkammer zu Münster


Kostbare Goldschmiedekunst von internationalem Rang kommt im Frühjahr 2012 zur Ausstellung „Goldene Pracht“ nach Münster. „Wir konnten für die umfangreiche Schau im LWL-Landesmuseum und in der Domkammer mehr als 240 mittelalterliche Exponate von internationalen und nationalen Leihgebern gewinnen“, sagte Historiker Prof. Dr. Gerd Althoff vom Exzellenzcluster „Religion und Politik“ der Uni Münster. Darunter sind wertvolle Stücke wie die Thronende Muttergottes aus Walcourt, der Marienschrein aus Tournai in Belgien und vergoldete Emailplatten aus dem British Museum. „Zugleich würdigt die Ausstellung erstmals die Pracht westfälischer Goldschmiedekunst, die lange im Verborgenen schlummerte. Im Vergleich mit den internationalen Spitzenwerken wird sich dem Publikum ihr hohes Niveau erschließen.“

Die Ausstellung ist ein Kooperationsprojekt von LWL-Landesmuseum für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte des Landschaftsverbandes Westfalen-Lippe (LWL), Bistum Münster sowie dem Exzellenzcluster „Religion und Politik“. Vom 26. Februar bis 28. Mai 2012 präsentiert sie auf 1.500 Quadratmetern in zwölf Räumen insgesamt 300 herausragende Werke der Goldschmiedekunst des 10. bis 16. Jahrhunderts. Die Kuratoren konnten internationale Leihgaben aus Museen, Bibliotheken und Kirchen in ganz Europa zusammentragen, wie LWL-Kuratorin Dr. Petra Marx und Bistums-Kurator Holger Kempkens erläuterten. Die Werke kommen aus der Schweiz, Frankreich, Belgien, den Niederlanden, Großbritannien und Finnland. 220 Leihgaben stammen aus Deutschland, 180 davon aus westfälischen Kirchen, Klöstern, Archiven und Museen. Das LWL-Landesmuseum und die Domkammer steuern selbst 60 herausragende Exponate bei.

Das Spätmittelalter als kulturelle Blütezeit
Die Ausstellung schreibt ein Stück westfälischer Geschichte neu, wie Althoff erläuterte. „Das Spätmittelalter stellt sich hier nicht als Zeitalter des Niedergangs dar, sondern als kulturelle Blütezeit: Ein selbstbewusstes Bürgertum stiftete aus tiefer Frömmigkeit hochwertige Kreuze, Kelche oder Schreine. Einige Klischees über die Provinzialität der Westfalen lassen sich im Licht der ‚Goldenen Pracht‘ über Bord werfen.“ Von der Kunstfertigkeit der Goldschmiede zeugen in der Ausstellung laut Marx Schätze wie der Cappenberger Barbarossa-Kopf, das wohl erste Porträt des Mittelalters, das Borghorster Reliquienkreuz, das jüngst in London ausgestellt wurde, und die einzigartigen Silberstatuetten wie die der Heiligen Agnes aus dem Münsterischen Domschatz.

„Viele Stücke holen wir erstmals aus dem Verborgenen“, sagte Bistums-Kurator Holger Kempkens. „So werden die Apostelfiguren vom Hochaltar des Münsterischen Doms nach Jahrzehnten zum ersten Mal wieder öffentlich zu sehen sein. Andere Werke wie der Sifridus-Kelch aus dem finnischen Borga, der im 30-jährigen Krieg (1618-1648) aus dem Osnabrücker-Schatz verschwand, sind nur selten in Deutschland zu bewundern.“ Die Ausstellung zeigt Marx zufolge einerseits sakrale Stücke wie die weltweit älteste Monstranz, die aus der Abtei Herkenrode in Belgien stammt. Andererseits präsentiert sie edelste Gegenstände für den weltlichen Gebrauch wie das einzigartige Ratssilber aus Osnabrück oder filigranen Schmuck für die städtische Kundschaft.

Kostbarstes Material, überirdischer Glanz
Den westfälischen Objekten werden in der Ausstellung jeweils internationale gegenübergestellt. So lassen sich laut Kempkens nicht nur internationale künstlerische Einflüsse auf die westfälische Kunst entdecken, sondern auch die hohe Qualität der Objekte: „Der Beckumer Prudentia-Schrein, in heimischer Goldschmiedeproduktion entstanden, wird neben dem berühmten Marienschrein aus Tournai erstrahlen, der aus der berühmten Werkstatt des Nikolas von Verdun stammt, dem Erbauer des Dreikönigsschreins im Kölner Dom.“ Das kostbarste Material des Mittelalters war das Gold: „Ob adlige oder bürgerliche Stifter: Das Beste war gerade gut genug, wenn es galt, Gott und die Heiligen zu ehren“, so Historiker Althoff. Kuratorin Marx ergänzte: „Sein überirdischer Glanz machte es zu einem Sinnbild für das Ewige, Heilige und Göttliche und brachte den Menschen die himmlische Herrlichkeit nahe.“ Die Goldschmiedearbeiten, oft mit Silber und Edelsteinen versehen, wurden so zu Zeugnissen christlicher Frömmigkeit und weltlicher Repräsentationsbedürfnisse.

Die historische Identität der Region stärken
Wichtigste Produktionsstätten in Westfalen waren zunächst die Bischofssitze Münster, Paderborn und Osnabrück sowie das Benediktinerkloster Corvey und das Frauenstift Essen, wie die Schau nach den Worten von Kurator Kempkens verdeutlichen wird. Ab dem 13. Jahrhundert entstanden die Werke zunehmend in den erblühenden Hansestädten Soest und Dortmund. Historiker Althoff: „Die Entstehung dieser goldenen Pracht stellt einen wesentlichen, bislang kaum erschlossenen Aspekt der Geschichte Westfalens dar und kann die historische Identität der Region genauso stärken wie die Erinnerung an den Sieg über die Römer und an den Westfälischen Frieden.“

Markenzeichen der Ausstellung „Goldene Pracht“ ist die interdisziplinäre Herangehensweise durch die Zusammenarbeit der Museen mit dem Exzellenzcluster, die kunsthistorische, historische und theologische Blickwinkel vereint. So verdeutlicht die Schau den künstlerischen Rang der Werke genauso wie das historische und soziale Umfeld, in dem sie entstanden. Die Goldschmiedekunst wird in der Ausstellung ergänzt durch Skulpturen, Tafelbilder, Buchmalerei und liturgische Gewänder. Neben schriftlichen Dokumenten veranschaulichen sie den künstlerischen Rang, die Symbolik und die vielschichtige Bedeutung der Goldschmiedewerke. (vvm/ska)

Source: uni-muenster.de

zondag 8 januari 2012

Almanach de Gotha 2012 - Volume I Parts I & II - Edited by John Kennedy


With the Almanach de Gotha's return in 1998, after a hiatus of more than 50 years, Sir Stephen Runciman wrote in the Spectator "In this present age, which we are often told sees the twilight of royalty, it is comforting to be able to welcome the reappearance of the most distinguished of genealogical almanacs."

The 2011 edition follows the successful format of previous editions with families listed by rank in their corresponding parts. Births, marriages and deaths of all living members of the Gotha have been updated and it remains the only publication to list all the members of all the imperial, royal, princely and ducal houses and the counts of the Holy Roman Empire. Even family disputes are handled by the careful noting of competing claims. This new edition also sees a full list of the households of the courts of Europe, diplomatic listings and a full entry for the Holy See.

The most comprehensive listing of its kind, with an impeccable pedigree, the book remains an essential reference for genealogists, libraries and scholars. There is and never has been a comparable source, a book once described as "the second most important ever published".

Pre-order here

First Published: 16 Feb 2012
13 Digit ISBN: 9780953214273
Pages: 1000
Size: 15 x 10.5
Binding: Hardback
Imprint: Almanach de Gotha
Series: Almanach de Gotha
Subject: Modern History
BIC Class: HBLL