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Back in the Day: mysterious death of the King of castles

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Back in the Day: mysterious death of the King of castles


June 13, 1886. The dead bodies of Ludwig II of Bavaria and his psychiatrist Bernhard von Gudeen are found floating in Lake Starnberg, near Munich. The previous day, Ludwig had been deposed from the throne on grounds of mental illness. The exact circumstances of their deaths remains a mystery to this day. Ludwig II’s reign is remembered for his eccentricity, broken wedding engagements and a fondness for building castles as well as for his admiration for composer Richard Wagner. The young King summoned Wagner to his court and promoted him heavily despite widely-held contempt in conservative Bavaria for Wagner’s often extravagant behaviour. Ludwig’s legacy was to be the fantasy castles that he had built, the most famous of which being Neuschwanstein which inspired Walt Disney’s Sleeping Beauty and to which millions of tourists still flock today.
Also on June 13: ‘The Long and Winding Road’ becomes the Beatles’ last Number 1 hit single (1970); teenager Marcus Sarjeant fires six blank shots at Queen Elizabeth II at the Trooping of the Colour parade (1981); Timothy McVeigh is sentenced to death for his role in the Oklahoma City bombing two years earlier (1997)
Born on June 13: William Butler Yeats (1865), Ban Ki-moon (1944), David Gray (1968), Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen (1986)

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