On This Day in History, July 15

In 1482, Abu Abdallah Muhammad XII succeeded his father as Sultan of the Emirate of Granada. By 1491, he led an invasion of Castile, relied upon Christian aid to reclaim his throne, and witnessed the collapse of Islamic rule in Iberia. That year, he would surrender Granada to the Christian Spanish Crown and would spend the rest of his life in Morocco.

In 1799, French military engineer Pierre-François Bouchard discovered the artifact known as the Rosetta Stone during work on Fort Julien near the present day city of Rashid. The Fort was occupied and renamed by the French during Napoleon’s Egyptian-based conflict with the Ottoman Empire. The Rosetta Stone would be used to translate Egyptian hieroglyphics.

In 2016, a faction from within the Turkish Armed Forces attempted a coup d’état against the government led by President Recep Tayypi Erdogan. The coup was initiated, according to those involved, because of the erosion of secularism, the ruin of democratic rule, a disregard for human rights, and the county’s loss of credibility among the international community. The coup was put down the following day and was followed by purges.

A Notable Birth

1606 – Rembrandt van Rijn (d. 1669) was a Dutch painter. His work was spread across a series of different topics unique for his period and contributed to the Dutch Golden Age. He is best known for his self-portraits.

A Notable Death

1542 – Lisa del Giocondo (b. 1479) was an Italian noblewoman from Florence. Little is known about her life, especially given that she was the one immortalized in Leonardo da Vinci’s painting, Mona Lisa.

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