Most national leaders suffer from self-delusion to some degree, but they pale in comparison with Joshua Abraham Norton who in 1859 declared himself Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico.

Norton was born in England in 1818 but spent his early life in South Africa. Following the death of his parents, he then emigrated to San Francisco during the Gold Rush of 1849. Read more ›››

Sunday Round-up

Grammar vigilante: Known as the Banksy of grammar, one man has been waging a war on misplaced apostrophes on the shop signs of Bristol for the last thirteen years, armed with his trusty ‘apostrophiser’.

Naked ladies: No, not the usual internet stuff but naked bodies hidden in the landscape through the use of very clever camouflage by Swiss artist Filippo Ioco. Read more ›››

The French military has an undeserved reputation for its lack of martial ardour, from the infamous ‘French military victories’ Google Bomb to the ‘cheese-eating surrender monkeys’ epithet from The Simpsons that has entered the language.

This is a slur on the many brave French servicemen and women who gave their lives in the cause of freedom and one of those was René Mouchotte who became a hero of the Battle of Britain. Read more ›››

Sunday Round-up

What a bust: Footballing heartthrob Cristiano Ronaldo didn't look quite so handsome when a sculpture of him was unveiled at the ceremony at Madeira airport which has been named after him. I think it looks like Niall Quinn.

Speaking of busts: Sculptor David Bradley has carved a statue of the pregnant Beyonce entirely out of cheese as part of the East Village's Wine and Cheese Festival. Read more ›››

Solomon Linda is responsible for one of the most instantly recognised songs heard across the world and yet despite this, he earned little from the composition and was to die unrecognised and in poverty.

Linda was born in 1909 on a labour reserve near Ladysmith in Natal, South Africa. He grew up in the traditions of amahubo and izingoma zomshado music, or wedding songs. Read more ›››

Sunday Round-up

Blistering barnacles: The remain faction has recruited Tintin to their cause by using an illustration from The Crab with the Golden Claws to illustrate the self-destructive nature of Brexit and it now hangs on the wall of the EU negotiating team.

And speaking of Brexit, Alistair Campbell has returned to journalism as editor-at-large for the New European, the newspaper for the 48%. Read more ›››

The British army has long relied on soldiers and units from its former empire and never more so than in the First World War when Khudadad Khan became the first Asian and Muslim to be awarded the Victoria Cross, the highest award for bravery.

Khan was born in Chakwal in the Punjab province of India in 1888, now the Potohar region of Pakistan, and joined the 129th Duke of Connaught's Own Baluchis as a sepoy. Read more ›››

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