Prague has a long history of defenestration -- hurling people from windows. It began in 1419 and may have continued as late as the mid-20th century, when a government minister hurtled from a window at Cerninsky palac. But the incident on which I wish to focus -- our window of opportunity for learning -- occurred on May 23, 1618.
The city was awash in sectarian strife. King Ferdinand refused to halt Catholic discrimination, and radical protestant preacher Vaclav Budova teamed with a soldier named Count Matthias Thurn in a plot against the king's two governors in Prague Castle. They recruited a team of protestants and stormed the castle's Bohemian Chancellery to confront the two men. But the conversation was brief. The protestants grabbed the men, along with an unlucky secretary, and threw them in fine Prague fashion out of a window.
But these three seemingly unfortunate men were in luck. Instead of plummeting to their deaths, they were saved. By what, you ask? A soft landing on a giant pile of dung.
The moral of the story, my esteemed flock, is this: The next time you see a canine "doing his business" in your yard, think twice before you utter a harsh word or cast a disapproving look. The product of that canine's efforts just may save your life.