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Childebert II

Childebert II was the Merovingian king of Austrasia from 575 until his death in 595, as the eldest son of Sigebert I, the king of Burgundy from 592 to his death, as the adopted son of his uncle Guntram. When his father was assassinated in 575, Childebert was taken from Paris by Gundobald, one of his faithful lords, to Metz, where he was recognized as sovereign, he was only five years old, during his long minority the power was disputed between his mother Brunhilda and the nobles. Chilperic I, king at Paris, the Burgundian king Guntram, sought an alliance with Childebert, adopted by both in turn; because Guntram was lord of half of Marseille, the district of Provence became a centre of a brief dispute between the two. Guntram allied with Dynamius of Provence, who instigated the canons of the Diocese of Uzès to elect their deacon Marcellus, as bishop in opposition to their already-elected bishop Jovinus, a former governor of Provence. While Jovinus and Theodorus, Bishop of Marseille, were travelling to the court of Childebert, Guntram had them arrested.

Dynamius, blocked Gundulf, a duke of an important senatorial family and Childebert's former domesticus, from entering Marseille on behalf of Childebert. He was forced to yield, though he arrested Theodore again and had him sent to Guntram. Childebert replaced him in Provence by Nicetius. Despite his revolt, Childebert formally restored Dynamius to favour on 28 November 587, but with the assassination of Chilperic in 584 and the dangers occasioned to the French monarchy by the expedition of Gundoald in 585, Childebert threw himself unreservedly into the arms of Guntram. By the Treaty of Andelot of 587, Childebert was recognised as Guntram's heir, with his uncle's help he quelled the revolts of the nobles and succeeded in seizing the castle of Woëwre. Many attempts were made on his life by Fredegund, wife of Chilperic, anxious to secure Guntram's inheritance for her son Clotaire II. Childebert II had relations with the Byzantine Empire, fought on several occasions in the name of the Emperor Maurice, against the Lombards in Italy, with limited success.

On the death of Guntram in 592, Childebert annexed the kingdom of Burgundy, contemplated seizing Clotaire's estates and becoming sole king of the Franks. However, he and his young wife Faileuba were poisoned to death in 595, he had two minor sons: the older, Theudebert II, inherited Austrasia with its capital at Metz, the younger, Theuderic II received Guntram's former kingdom of Burgundy, with its capital at Orléans. This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Christian Pfister. "Childebert". In Chisholm, Hugh. Encyclopædia Britannica. Cambridge University Press

Murders in the Zoo

Murders in the Zoo is 1933 Pre-Code horror film directed by A. Edward Sutherland, written by Philip Wylie and Seton I. Miller. Considered dark for its time, film critic Leonard Maltin called the film "astonishingly grisly." Big-game hunter and wealthy zoologist Eric Gorman is an insanely jealous husband who uses his animal knowledge to dispose of his impulsive wife's lovers. The film opens in an Indian jungle with Gorman using a needle and thread to sew a colleague's mouth closed after having discovered that he had kissed his wife, he seals the man's fate by abandoning him in the jungle with the wild beasts. Gorman pretends to be surprised at hearing that the man had been eaten by tigers. Both Gorman and his wife Evelyn return to America aboard a ship packed with captured animals he intends to add to his collection at a major zoo. On the ship, Evelyn starts to develop promiscuous relations with Roger Hewitt, which she makes little effort to hide from her husband; the murderously jealous Gorman takes notice.

So once back in the States, he begins to plot a way to get rid of Hewitt. The zoo is beginning to run into financial trouble and the new press agent, Peter Yates, a man terrified of most of the zoo's animals and considered to be an alcoholic, decides to host a fundraising dinner. Gorman takes this as a perfect opportunity to dispense his vengeance by poisoning Hewitt with mamba venom, he had obtained the poison after asking the zoo's laboratory doctor, Jack Woodford, to work on finding an antitoxin for the snake's fatal bite. When Hewitt unexpectedly dies at the fundraising dinner, Evelyn accuses her husband of being the murderer. Outraged, Gorman attacks her, but she is able to escape into his office where she finds a mechanical mamba head seeping with real mamba poison in his desk, she now knows for a fact that he killed Hewitt and takes the snake head with the intention to find Dr. Woodford. However, Gorman finds her and prevents her from revealing his crime by throwing her to the alligators, where she is torn to shreds.

The following day a group of children who sneak into the zoo discover tattered remains of Evelyn's dress. Dr. Woodford becomes suspicious and accuses Gorman of murdering both his wife and Rodger Hewitt. Gorman disposes of Dr. Woodford by attacking him with the mechanical snake head just as he had done to Hewitt; the doctor's assistant Jerry gives Woodford a shot of the antitoxin he had created for the mamba poison in time to save his life. She realizes that Gorman is responsible for the apparent mamba attack when he tries to stop her, has the zoo's alarms set off. A police chase thus ensues. Gorman releases big cats from the carnivore house in the hopes of distracting the police, but it backfires and a lion chases Gorman into the cage of a boa constrictor, who slowly kills and devours him. In the epilogue, Jerry visits a convalescing Dr. Woodford in the hospital; the stress, has caused Yates to fall off the wagon, he is seen fearlessly meandering through the zoo swatting on the nose a still free lion, stalking him.

Charlie Ruggles as Peter Yates Lionel Atwill as Eric Gorman Gail Patrick as Jerry Evans Randolph Scott as Dr. Jack Woodford John Lodge as Roger Hewitt Kathleen Burke as Evelyn Gorman Harry Beresford as Professor G. A. Evans Murders in the Zoo was well received overall by its initial audience; the Los Angeles Times raved over the movie, saying, "Roars and cackling of the wild animals on the screen at the Paramount yesterday were echoed to an amazing degree by the audience, at times driven to a mild state of hysteria by scenes in'Murders in the Zoo'." However, a New York Times movie critic says, "Those who demand their leaven of romance in horror pictures are to find'Murders in the Zoo' inadequate in this direction." Though he claims that "it happens that the director has been too effective in dramatizing these cheerless events…Lionell Atwill as the insanely jealous husband is too convincing for comfort… by its ability to chill and terrify, this film is a successful melodrama." Mark Clark wrote an article on Lionel Atwill as an actor and says that Murders in the Zoo was the "quintessential Lionel Atwill film."

In the article Clark claims that "Atwill performs here with the quiet, coiled striking power of a beast tracking its prey. He glides effortlessly across the screen, speaking volumes with a perceptible change in tenor in his voice, unveiling his character's hidden passions with a simple, unguarded glance." Murders in the Zoo on IMDb Murders in the Zoo at the TCM Movie Database Murders in the Zoo at AllMovie Murders in the Zoo at the American Film Institute Catalog

Bexell Cottage

The Bexell Cottage is a small cottage in Varberg, Sweden. It has been turned into a historical heritage mini-museum; the Bexell Cottage was built in 1785 in Harplinge. In 1876, it was bought by politician, member of parliament and land owner Alfred Bexell, from its owner Jöns Jönsson together with all interior possessions. Jönsson was only allowed to retain his day dress, according to the purchase agreement. Jönsson's snuffbox passed to the ownership of Bexell. Alfred Bexell was the first in Sweden who bought and protected a Swedish peasant's home with the intent of turning it into a museum, he inspired Arthur Hazelius to establish the open-air museum Skansen in Stockholm. In 1906, the cottage was moved to Varberg. In the 20th century, it was called a Hallandic name of the type of cottage. In 2003, it became a part of Varberg County Museum. At present it is named Bexell Cottage. In Bexell Cottage there painted wall tapestry from the 19th century; the tapestry cover the walls and ceiling of the cottage.

They were only used for Christmas, but today they are posted all the year around. Bexell Cottage can be visited by the public at the shows of the cottage that are arranged by Varberg County Museum. Alfred Bexell created a different kind of "museum" in a forested area which he owned, east of Varberg The area has become famous, after visitors in 1925 began discovering rocks engraved with sayings, names of noted people of the time, or mottos, they were all commissioned by Bexell during the end of the nineteenth century, were carved by two stonemasons whom he hired for the purpose. His diaries do not explain his motive. In 2014 an effort was mounted to discover the extent of the engravings; the messages include: "Do not say all you know but always know what you say". Bexell's own tombstone is inscribed with: "Man’s history is his character."