Google has created a ‘doodle’ to celebrate the 216th anniversary of the world’s first parachute jump.
The doodle is based on Andre-Jacque Garnerin’s daring leap on October 22 1797 at Parc Monceau in Paris, which saw the then 28-year-old leap from a balloon using a seven-metre silk parachute that resembled an umbrella.
Once Garnerin’s balloon reached a height of approximately 3,000 feet, the Parisian daredevil severed the rope that attached it to his basket, automatically opening the parachute.
This left Garnerin plummeting towards the earth still inside the container, with just the attached silk parachute in place to decrease the speed of its fall.
Although the basket lurched violently during the descent and suffered a violent landing, Garnerin somehow emerged totally uninjured.
Following the jump, Garnerin was granted the title Official Aeronaut of France and he went on to become a well-known international figure.
He and his wife Jeanne Genevieve Labrosse – herself a celebrated balloonist and the first ever female parachutist – took part in a tour of England in the early 1800s, taking part in several balloon flights while doing so.
Andre-Jacque Garnerin died in Paris at the age of 54 on August 18, 1823 while working on a new balloon. While crossing the construction site on which the balloon was being built, Garnerin was struck by a falling beam, killing him instantly.
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