Page 155. " Hitler broke his pact with Russia "

The Treaty of Non-Aggression between Germany and the Soviet Union, also known as the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact (after the foreign minister of the Soviet Union, Vyacheslav Molotov, and the German foreign minister, Joachim von Ribbentrop), was signed in Moscow on 23 August 1939. With the outbreak of World War II looming, the Soviet Union and Germany agreed to remain neutral in the event that either country should be attacked by a third party. The pact also included a secret protocol which divided the states of Northern and Eastern Europe into German and Soviet "spheres of influence". However, the agreement was not to last. “Hitler broke his pact with Russia” when he ordered Germany to invade the Soviet Union on 22 June, 1941.


Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeMolotov–Ribbentrop Pact - Credit: Peter Hanula/Wikimedia Commons
Page 156. " a hat of the kind worn by Alberto Santos-Dumont "
Alberto Santos-Dumont 1873-1932
Public DomainAlberto Santos-Dumont 1873-1932 - Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Born in the Brazilian town of Palmira in 1873, Alberto Santos-Dumont was a pioneer of aviation who designed, built and flew one of the first dirigibles (also known as airships). He went on to win the Deutsch de la Meurthe prize on  a flight that rounded the Eiffel Tower in 1901, and he made the first European public flight of an airplane in 1906.

Sadly, it is believed that Santos-Dumont hanged himself in the city of Guarujá in São Paulo in 1932, after suffering from multiple sclerosis and being deeply disturbed by the use of aircraft in warfare. He is remembered for wearing a panama-like hat, seen pictured here and referred to in The History of Love.

Page 157. " who was the greater poet, Neruda or Dario "

Chilean poet, Pablo Neruda, was born in 1904 and wrote historical epics, surrealist poems, and romantic collections such as his second published work, Twenty Poems of Love and a Song of Despair. Neruda was honored for his writing with the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1971.

Rubén Darío was a Nicaraguan poet born in 1867, renowned for starting the Spanish-American literary movement known as modernismo at the end of the 19th century. He also spent some time in Chile and is revered as the "Prince of Castilian Letters".