Saturday, July 31, 2004

Uzbekistan, Flag Of

Uzbekistan legalized the design of its new national flag on November 18, 1991. More than 200 proposals had been submitted in a flag design contest; the winning pattern had five unequal horizontal stripes, as in the flag adopted in 1952 when the country was known as the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic. The former flag's horizontal stripes of red-blue-red with white fimbriations symbolized

Friday, July 30, 2004

Spanish Literature, The novel

In Ramón Pérez de Ayala, the novel was at once a polished art form and a forum for philosophical discussion. Belarmino y Apolonio (1921; Belarmino and Apolonio), a projection of the old debate between faith and reason, made its characters almost symbolic, as did Tigre Juan (1926; Tiger Juan), on the traditional theme of honour. Gabriel Miró's perfect descriptive prose retarded the

Seleucia Pieria

Greek  Seleukeia,   in ancient Syria, port of Antioch and frontier fortress on the Cilician border (near modern Samandag, Turkey), 4 miles (6 km) north of the mouth of the Orontes River. With Antioch, Apamea, and Laodicea it formed the Syrian tetrapolis. The town occupied the rocky slopes of Musa Dagi, and its natural fortifications and good harbour soon made it the port for the important city of Antioch.

Strabo

Greek geographer and historian whose Geography is the only extant work covering the whole range of peoples and countries known to both Greeks and Romans during the reign of Augustus (27 BC–AD 14). Its numerous quotations from technical literature, moreover, provide a remarkable account of the state of Greek geographical science, as well as of the history of

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Caesar, Julius

Caesar changed the course of the history of the Greco-Roman world decisively and irreversibly.

Shiel, Loch

Narrow lake, in the northwest Highlands of Scotland. About 17 miles (28 km) long, it extends ribbonlike from Glenfinnan southwestward and drains into the 3-mile- (5-km-) long River Shiel, which empties into Loch Moidart, a sea loch. The upper reaches of Loch Shiel, toward Glenfinnan, are bounded by wild and rough scenery, with steep mountains reaching elevations of about 3,000 feet (900 metres).

Augusta

City, river port, and seat (1777) of Richmond county, eastern Georgia, U.S. It lies on the Savannah River (there bridged to North Augusta, South Carolina), on the fall line where the Piedmont Plateau meets the Coastal Plain. The area was explored in 1540 by the Spanish conquistador Hernando de Soto, but not until 1735 was a fortified fur-trading post established on the site (now marked by a Celtic

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Paradoxides

Genus of trilobites (an extinct group of arthropods) found as fossils in Middle Cambrian rocks of North America and western Europe (the Cambrian Period lasted from 540 to 505 million years ago). Paradoxides has a well-developed head region terminating laterally in pointed spines that vary in development from species to species; the tail region is poorly developed. The body

Granite

Because of its use as paving block and as a building stone, the quarrying of granite was, at one time, a major industrial activity. Except for tombstones, however, for which there

Vulci

Etruscan  Velch  important town of the ancient Etruscans, the ruins of which are about 10 miles from the sea between the villages of Canino and Montalto di Castro, in Viterbo province, Italy. The site, excavated in 1956, has extensive cemeteries and a large network of streets and walls. Vulci grew out of a number of Villanovan villages and flourished chiefly in the 6th–4th century BC, largely as a result

Gray, Robert

Gray went to sea at an early age, and after serving in the Continental Navy during the Revolutionary War, he entered the service of a Massachusetts trading company. In command first of the “Lady Washington” and later of the “Columbia,

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Elizabeth

Elizabeth was the daughter of the Bavarian duke Maximilian Joseph.

Middlesex

County, south-central Connecticut, U.S. It is bordered to the south by Long Island Sound and to the southwest by the Hammonasset River, and the Connecticut River bisects the county from north to south. Other waterways are the Menunketesuck River, the Moodus Reservoir, and Bashan Lake. The topography is mostly upland terrain, with river valleys and coastal lowlands. Parklands

Abu Al-'atahiyah

Abu al-'Atahiyah (“Father of Craziness”) came from a family of mawlas, poor non-Arabs who were clients of the 'Anaza Arab tribe. The family's poverty prevented Abu al-'Atahiyah from receiving

Saturday, July 24, 2004

Paul Of Thebes, Saint

According to St. Jerome, his biographer, Paul fled to the Theban desert during the persecution of Christians (249–251) under the Roman emperor Decius. Thereafter, he lived a life of prayer and penitence in a cave, dying at the reputed age of 113. Jerome considered

Friday, July 23, 2004

Chronology

The Christian Era is the era now in general use throughout the world. Its epoch, or commencement, is January 1, 754 AUC (ab urbe condita—“from the foundation of the city [of Rome]”—or anno urbis conditae—“in the year of the foundation of the city”). Christ's birth was at first believed to have occurred on the December 25 immediately preceding. Years are reckoned as before or after the Nativity,

Follen, Karl

Graduated from the University of Giessen as a doctor of civil and canonical law (1818), Follen taught there and in the

Raymond, Alex(ander Gillespie)

At 18 Raymond went to work in a brokerage office on New York City's Wall Street, but the stock market crash of 1929 ended his career in finance. He then worked briefly as an assistant to Russ Westover on his strip “Tillie

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Floral Decoration

Plant materials are customarily arranged in containers, woven into garlands, and worn or carried for personal adornment. Flower bouquets that are carried include the nosegay and corsage. In the mid-19th century, the nosegay, or posy (a small bunch of mixed flowers), was much in fashion. No well-dressed Victorian lady appeared at a social gathering without carrying one,

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Hasdrubal

Late in 210 BC, Publius Cornelius

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Alaskan Brown Bear

Race or subspecies of grizzly bear (q.v.).

Gravitational Radius

The gravitational radius (Rg) of an object of mass M is given by the following formula, in which G is the universal gravitational

Monday, July 19, 2004

Biblical Literature, III Baruch

Apocalyptic literature was much concerned about sources of information about the heavenly world and about the places of the damned and saved souls. In later Jewish and early Christian apocalypses, in which the hero undertakes a heavenly trip and sees the secrets that are hidden from others, these sources of information are highly significant. III Baruch, a book

Steer Wrestling

Also called  bulldogging  rodeo event in which a mounted cowboy chases a full-grown steer, dives from his horse on top of the animal, grasps its horns, digs his heels in the ground to bring the animal to a stop, and twists it to the ground. The event is timed from the moment a barrier in front of the cowboy is released to the moment the steer is judged down—i.e., flat on its side with all four legs and head in

Aurochs

Also spelled  Auroch   (species Bos primigenius), extinct wild ox of Europe, family Bovidae (order Artiodactyla), from which cattle are probably descended. The aurochs survived in central Poland until 1627. The aurochs was black, stood 1.8 m (6 feet) high at the shoulder, and had spreading, forward-curving horns. Some German breeders claim that since 1945 they have re-created this race by crossing Spanish fighting

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Pork

Flesh of hogs, usually slaughtered between the ages of six months and one year. The most desirable pork is grayish pink in colour, firm and fine-grained, well-marbled, and covered with an outer layer of firm white fat. About 30 percent of the meat is consumed as cooked fresh meat; the remainder is cured or smoked for bacon and ham, used in sausage, and rendered to produce lard.

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Kwinana

Town, southwestern Western Australia. It lies along Cockburn Sound, just south of Perth. The name was taken from a freighter wrecked offshore in 1922; it is an Aboriginal word meaning “young woman.” The place was a small resort until the mid-1950s, when a large oil refinery with associated port facilities was completed to receive oil shipments from the Middle East. Since then, blast

Skeat, Walter William

Following a classical education at Christ's College, Cambridge, Skeat in 1891 joined the civil service of the state of Selangor in the Malay Peninsula. He became interested in ideas of magic

Abraham Lincoln Battalion

A force of volunteers from the United States who served on the Republican side in the Spanish Civil War from January 1937 until November 1938. All seven International Brigades (q.v.)—each composed of three or more battalions—were formed by the Comintern (Communist International), beginning in late 1936, and all were disbanded by late 1938 as the war neared an end. Like the European battalions,

Friday, July 16, 2004

Water Parsnip

Any of several aromatic herbs of the genus Sium, especially S. latifolium, belonging to the parsley family (Apiaceae), distributed throughout the Northern Hemisphere and Africa. They grow in moist areas, and some species are even partially submerged. All are perennial herbs with divided leaves and clusters of white flowers. S. sisarum, known as skirret, is cultivated

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Periyar Wild Life Sanctuary

Wildlife preserve in Idukki district, Kerala state, southern India. The sanctuary is noted for herds of elephants, sometimes numbering 50 members. In addition, bonnet monkey, nilgai, langur, porcupine, sloth bear, tiger, leopard, Asian elephant, barking deer, gray jungle fowl, kingfisher, the great Indian hornbill, and the southern grackle are found in the preserve. Extending

Orange Order

The society was formed in 1795 to maintain the Protestant ascendancy in Ireland in the face of rising demands for Catholic Emancipation. Enmity between Roman Catholics and Protestants had always

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Skeat, Walter William

Interracial American organization created to work for the abolition of segregation and discrimination in housing, education, employment, voting, and transportation; to oppose racism; and to ensure African Americans their constitutional rights. The NAACP was created in 1909 by an interracial group consisting of W.E.B. Du Bois, Ida Bell Wells-Barnett, Mary White

China, The Period Of T'ang power (626–755)

Two of Kao-tsu's sons were rivals for the succession: the crown prince Chien-ch'eng and Li Shih-min, the general who had played a large part in the wars of unification. Their rivalry, and the factional strife it generated, reached a peak in 625–626 when it appeared that Chien-ch'eng was likely to succeed. In a military coup, Li Shih-min murdered Chien-ch'eng and another of his brothers

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Allen, Florence Ellinwood

Allen was a descendant of American Revolutionary War hero Ethan Allen. She graduated from Western Reserve University's College for Women in 1904 and for two years studied music in Berlin. An injury prevented

Ambo

The Ambo economy rests almost equally on agriculture and animal husbandry,

Monday, July 12, 2004

Kircher, Athanasius

Kircher learned Greek and Hebrew at the Jesuit school in Fulda, pursued scientific and humanistic studies at Paderborn, Cologne, and Koblenz, and in 1628 was ordained at Mainz. He fled the

Lawes, Lewis Edward

Assuming the office of warden of Sing Sing State Prison (now Ossining Correctional Facility), Ossining, N.Y., in 1920, Lawes instituted such reforms as the establishment of theatricals, film showings, and athletics;

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Alaska, Mining

Petroleum was first extracted and refined between 1917 and 1933, but the development of the Kenai oil field in 1961 made the petroleum and natural gas industry Alaska's most important mineral production. Oil seeps were known as early as the 1880s in the North Slope region, which today has become a field of major economic importance to both the state and the nation. Alaska ranks second

Antarctica, Post-IGY research

In order to continue and coordinate the international Antarctic scientific effort in the post-IGY period, ICSU in September 1957 organized the Special Committee on Antarctic Research, or SCAR. (In 1961 the word Scientific was substituted for Special.) The foundations for the committee were laid at its first meeting in The Hague in 1958. SCAR, a nonpolitical body, coordinates not

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Blood Serum

The part of blood plasma remaining after coagulation, during which process the plasma protein fibrinogen is converted to fibrin and remains behind in the clot. Immune serum or antitoxin, serum prepared from the blood of animals or humans that have been exposed to a disease and have developed specific antibodies, is used to protect persons against diseases to which

Arno, Peter

While at Yale University (1922–24), Arno was particularly interested in music and organized his own band. He also decorated screens and panels for restaurants.

Friday, July 09, 2004

Shijo School

Also called  Maruyama School,   Japanese school of naturalistic painting that was founded in the late 18th century by Maruyama Masataka (Okyo) and was made popular by his pupils, among them Matsumura Gekkei, called Goshun, from whose residence on Fourth Street (Shijo), in Kyoto, the movement took its name. Among the most important artists associated with the school were Matsumura Keibun and Okamoto

Aleandro, Girolamo

In 1520 Pope

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Molfetta

Town and episcopal see, Bari provincia, Puglia (Apulia) regione, southeastern Italy. It lies along the Adriatic Sea, northwest of Bari city. An important port in the Middle Ages and a free city for a time, it was sacked by the French in 1529. Although Molfetta is mainly modern, its outstanding Romanesque–Apulian-style Duomo Vecchio (“Old Cathedral”), a national monument, dates from

Electronic Music, Tape music

With tape music the history of electronic music in the narrower sense begins. This history seems split into three main periods: an early (by now classical) period lasting from the commercial introduction of the tape recorder immediately following World War II until about 1960; a second period that featured the introduction of electronic music synthesizers and the

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Harding, Florence

Before returning to Marion, Florence destroyed many of the papers that could have documented more fully her role in what many observers consider the worst presidency in the country's history. She had worked hard to make her husband a success, but the revelations associated with the Teapot Dome Scandal made his flaws very clear. One biographer concluded that she was a “full partner” in Warren's presidency. She died in 1924 and was buried beside her husband in a large mausoleum near the house where they were married.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Ring

Basically, a ring consists of three parts: the circle, or hoop;

Jungfrau

Well-known Swiss peak (13,642 feet [4,158 m]) dominating the Lauterbrunnen valley and lying 11 miles (18 km) south-southeast of the resort of Interlaken. The scenic mountain separates the cantons of Bern and Valais and is in the Bernese Alps, two other peaks of which (the Finsteraarhorn [14,022 feet] and the Aletschhorn [13,763 feet]) surpass it in height. The first ascent was made in 1811 on the eastern or Valais

Caribbean Sea

Suboceanic basin of the western Atlantic Ocean, lying between 9° to 22° N and 89° to 60° W. It is approximately 1,063,000 square miles (2,754,000 square kilometres) in extent. To the south it is bounded by the coasts of Venezuela, Colombia, and Panama; to the west by Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, Belize, and the Yucatán Peninsula of Mexico; to the north by the Greater Antilles islands of Cuba, Hispaniola,

Monday, July 05, 2004

Farès, Nabile

In his first novel, Yahia, pas de chance (1970; “Yahia, No Chance”), Farès introduced a quest that was to haunt his later works; the search for the

Brieux, Eugène

French dramatist, one of the leading exponents of the realist drama, whose somewhat didactic works attacked the social evils of his day. Brieux's works formed part of the repertory of the famed Théâtre-Libre of André Antoine, which had a far-reaching effect on the spread of the new naturalistic style. Playwright and critic George Bernard Shaw described

Sunda Strait

Indonesian  Selat Sunda  channel, 16–70 miles (26–110 km) wide, between the islands of Java (east) and Sumatra, that links the Java Sea (Pacific) with the Indian Ocean (south). There are several volcanic islands within the strait, the most famous of which is Krakatoa, which erupted in 1883, destroying 300 towns and villages and killing about 36,000 people. The strait was the scene of an encounter between U.S. and Japanese forces in

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Bay Bridge

In full  San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge  complex crossing that spans San Francisco Bay from the city of San Francisco to Oakland via Yerba Buena Island. One of the preeminent engineering feats of the 20th century, it was built during the 1930s under the direction of C.H. Purcell. The double-deck crossing extends 8 miles (13 km) and consists of two end-to-end suspension bridges of 2,310-foot (704-metre) main spans and 1,160-foot (354-metre) side

Saturday, July 03, 2004

Sino-tibetan Languages, Burmic languages

A number of Tibeto-Burman languages that are difficult to classify have marginal affiliations with Burmic. The Luish languages (Andro, Sengmai, Kadu, Sak, and perhaps also Chairel) in Manipur, India, and adjacent Myanmar resemble Kachin; Nung (including Rawang and Trung) in Kachin state in Myanmar and in Yunnan,

Yersin, Alexandre

Yersin studied medicine at the universities of Marburg and Paris and bacteriology with Émile Roux in Paris and Robert Koch in Berlin. In 1888 he and

Philip

A member of a distinguished equestrian family of Arab descent, Philip was praetorian prefect when the emperor Gordian III was killed in a mutiny (perhaps with Philip's connivance). Philip became emperor and quickly concluded a peace ending a war with Persia. After undertaking a series of campaigns

Friday, July 02, 2004

Schmidt, Arno

In full  Arno Otto Schmidt  novelist, translator, and critic, whose experimental prose established him as the preeminent Modernist of 20th-century German literature. With roots in both German Romanticism and Expressionism, he attempted to develop modern prose forms that correspond more closely to the workings of the conscious and subconscious mind

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Alabama, University Of

State university with campuses at Tuscaloosa (main campus), Birmingham, and Huntsville. All three branches offer a wide university curriculum and programs for bachelor's, master's, and doctorate degrees. The University of Alabama School of Law is in Tuscaloosa, and the School of Medicine is in Birmingham. Total enrollment at the three campuses is about 40,000. The university

Sanka

Little is known of their history. Although they are mentioned in Japanese chronicles from