And so made significant . . .

around the world, and through the centuries

16 July

1862
John Addington Symonds,
writer

‘The people of Milan are very unquiet to-night. They have been excited by a speech of Garibaldi, in which he denounced Napoleon, called him ‘traditore,’ ‘mosso da libidine,’ ‘capo di briganti, di assassini.’ The Milanese hate the French, and are beginning to weary of the Sardinian government, and because they have to pay heavier taxes they regret the Austrians. This promulgation of Garibaldi has roused them against France and Sardinia, and made them furious for a Republic. To-night they propose a demonstration; all the soldiers - cavalry, infantry, and National Guard - are in readiness to suppress it. While I was writing, a confused murmur reached our ears. We got up and ran to our window, which looks both up and down the street. Instantly we perceived that a large band of men, with lighted torches, were rapidly advancing up the street. A crowd formed in front of them. We saw men behind and at the sides. The bright red torches swayed about, burning and smoking with a glare upon the houses crowded with faces. Something seemed to interrupt their progress. A great noise arose, and the crowd increased. It was picturesque to see them toss their flambeaux up and down to make them shine, and in the distance each man looked like a shape of flame. Eschmann came up and told us that this was one of four divisions of the demonstration; 400 of another had been taken prisoners, and these were surrounded with soldiers. The soldiers forced them to break up, the crowd dropped away, and so ended the émeute. I often wondered what a demonstration meant. This is a pretty and picturesque specimen.’

A splendid liquid sky

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1942
Hermione Llewellyn,
secretary and noblewoman

‘A magnificent parcel, covered in tape and seals, arrived for me from India. Inside were two pairs of old-fashioned corsets with bones and laces. They were sent by HRH The Duke of Gloucester. Nick and I had an argument as to how one should thank one of the Royal Family for a present of corsets. Whichever way we put it looked disrespectful. Finally, we sent a telegram saying: ‘Reinforcements received. Positions now held. Most grateful thanks.’ ’

Reinforcements received

**************************************************************************************

1955
Carolina Maria de Jesus,
rubbish collector

‘I got up and obeyed Vera Eunice. I went to get the water. I made coffee. I told the children that I didn’t have any bread, that they would have to drink their coffee plain and eat meat with farinha. I was feeling ill and decided to cure myself. I stuck my finger down my throat twice, vomited, and knew I was under the evil eye. The upset feeling left and I went to Senhor Manuel, carrying some cans to sell. Everything that I find in the garbage I sell. He gave me 13 cruzeiros. I kept thinking that I had to buy bread, soap, and milk for Vera Eunice. The 13 cruzeiros wouldn’t make it. I returned home, or rather to my shack, nervous and exhausted. I thought of the worrisome life that I led. Carrying paper, washing clothes for the children, staying in the street all day long. Yet I’m always lacking things, Vera doesn’t have shoes and she doesn’t like to go barefoot. For at least two years I’ve wanted to buy a meat grinder. And a sewing machine.

I came home and made lunch for the two boys. Rice, beans, and meat, and I’m going out to look for paper. I left the children, told them to play in the yard and not to go into the street, because the terrible neighbours I have won’t leave my children alone. I was feeling ill and wished I could lie down. But the poor don’t rest nor are they permitted the pleasure of relaxation. I was nervous inside, cursing my luck. I collected two sacks full of paper. Afterward I went back and gathered up some scrap metal, some cans, and some kindling wood. As I walked I thought - when I return to the favela there is going to be something new.’

There’s nothing to eat

**************************************************************************************

1969
Don Kazimir,
sailor and submarine captain

‘We were drifting nicely at 200 meters. . . F. Busby, D. Kazimir, C. May, and J. Piccard have slight colds. The cabin temperature got up to a comfortable 66 °F. C. May checked iodine concentration in the number 1 and 2 fresh water tanks and found no iodine - cannot understand why, the concentration should be 6 ppm. The same for tanks 3 and 4. C. May was having difficulty with the bunk counters and some sleep monitoring caps. The number 1 hot water tank was cooling down fast since the vacuum was lost - will shift tanks soon. Good luck message was sent to Apollo 11 astronauts.’

The deeper you delve

**************************************************************************************

1969
Jacques Piccard,
oceanographer

‘All during the night the Franklin has drifted slowly at about 600 feet. Nothing has been moved to adjust her stability. Everything is fine, we are at a point 69 miles southeast of Cape Kennedy. We send a message to the Apollo 11 crew, a few hours before they leave for the moon. At 9:32, we hear - indirectly by way of radio and underwater telephone - the countdown and departure of the most fantastic expedition ever undertaken by man.’

The deeper you delve

**************************************************************************************

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Notes and Cautions
In general, these diary extracts are quoted as given in the published (book or online) source referred to in the reference articles. Each extract may be all, a large part of, or a small part of the complete entry for that day. I have tried to indicate where text has been removed from within a quote by the use of trailing dots in square bracket.

For any other use of these diary extracts other than browsing please refer to the original sources.

Any author, publisher or other copyright holder who takes the view that I am unacceptably breaching their copyright please let me know. I have tried to remain sensitive to copyright rules (using far fewer quotes, for example, when a book, by an author still alive, remains in print and popular), but it is not practical for me to seek authorisation for every quote and article, since I maintain these websites without any funding or advertis-ing. I take the view that publicity for the source books is a quid pro quo for my use of the extracts, but I am more than happy to remove the extracts if asked.

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The Diary Junction is one of those wonderful privately maintained public resources for which the Internet is justly celebrated: a database of information about celebrated and obscure diaries[over 500] from all historical periods, with referrals to the dates the diaries cover, where the originals are held and bibliographic information on published versions.’ Laura Miller, Salon

The Diary Review, hosted by Blogger, publishes magazine-style articles on diaries and diarists, usually several every week. The blog has been publishing for over five years, and is the secondary source for the diary extracts in this online anthology.