Tuesday, November 18, 2008


November 18, 1307:
According to legend, William Tell shoots an apple off of his son's head.

Wikipedia takes aim at the legend:

William Tell is a legendary hero of disputed historical authenticity who is said to have lived in the alpine Canton of Uri in Switzerland in the early 14th century.

William Tell from Bürglen was known as an expert marksman with the crossbow. At the time, the Habsburg emperors were seeking to dominate Uri. Hermann Gessler, the newly appointed Austrian Vogt of Altdorf raised a pole in the village's central square with his hat on top and demanded that all the local townsfolk bow before it. As Tell passed by without bowing, he was arrested. He received the punishment of being forced to shoot an apple off the head of his son, Walter, or else both would be executed.

Tell had been promised freedom if he shot the apple. On November 18, 1307, Tell split the fruit with a single bolt from his crossbow, without mishap. When Gessler queried him about the purpose of the second bolt in his quiver, Tell answered that if he had ended up killing his son in that trial, he would have turned the crossbow on Gessler himself.
Gessler became enraged at that comment, and had Tell bound and brought to his ship to be taken to his castle at Küssnacht. In a storm on Lake Lucerne, Tell managed to escape. On land, he went to Küssnacht, and when Gessler arrived, Tell shot him with the crossbow.

Tell's defiance of Gessler sparked a rebellion leading to the formation of the Swiss Confederation.

Tell fought in the Battle of Morgarten in 1315. He died in 1354 while trying to save a child from drowning in the Schächenbach, an alpine river in Ur.

Tell has been portrayed in the TV Universe several times, with three TV series dedicated to his legend. The first series, from the 1950s and starring Conrad Phillips, stands as the official version for William Tell's life in the main Toobworld. The later shows, 'Crossbow' with Will Lyman and another eponymous series with Kieren Hutchison in the title role, must be delegated to alternate TV dimensions (as would be the single episode performances by Ed Begley Jr. and Tibor Bitskey).
Ed Begley Jr.
. . . "Adventures from the Book of Virtues" (1996)
{Courage (#1.5)}

Tibor Bitskey
. . . "Fürkész történetei" (1983)
{Az alma (#1.9)}

Kieren Hutchison
. . . "Legend of William Tell, The" (1998)

Will Lyman
. . . "Crossbow" (1987)

Will Lyman
. . . Adventures of William Tell (1986)
[This was the pilot film for the series 'Crossbow'.]

Conrad Phillips
. . . "William Tell" (1958)

Today also marks the thirtieth anniversary of the massacre at Jonestown in Guyana, but that was far too depressing to dwell on here at Inner Toob. I'll leave that to cousin Soledad and other members of the news media......

Toby O'B

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