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Mark Pennell sits at the helm of his time machine.Mark's Almanac is a 90-second time travel that highlights the world's history from the very serious to the sometimes sublime.

Mark's Almanac for February 16, 2021

A painting of Pope Gregory the Great as done by José de Ribera.
WIKIPEDIA
A painting of Pope Gregory the Great as done by José de Ribera.

It was on this date in 600 that Pope Gregory the Great put out a decree that one should say "God bless you" when someone else sneezed. It was thought this would combat the bubonic plague that was ravaging Europe at that time. And it was on this date in 1943, Winston Churchill's doctor was called after having a high temperature. His doctor ordered the smokers in the room to leave due to Churchill being dangerously ill.