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Portal:Biography

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The Biography Portal

A biography, or simply bio, is a detailed description of a person's life. It involves more than just the basic facts like education, work, relationships, and death; it portrays a person's experience of these life events. Unlike a profile or curriculum vitae (résumé), a biography presents a subject's life story, highlighting various aspects of their life, including intimate details of experience, and may include an analysis of the subject's personality.

Biographical works are usually non-fiction, but fiction can also be used to portray a person's life. One in-depth form of biographical coverage is called legacy writing. Works in diverse media, from literature to film, form the genre known as biography.

An authorized biography is written with the permission, cooperation, and at times, participation of a subject or a subject's heirs. An autobiography is written by the person themselves, sometimes with the assistance of a collaborator or ghostwriter. (Full article...)

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Featured articles are displayed here, which represent some of the best content on English Wikipedia.

  • Image 1 Charles Carroll the Settler Charles Carroll (1661–1720), sometimes called Charles Carroll the Settler to differentiate him from his son and grandson, was a wealthy lawyer and planter in colonial Maryland. Carroll, a Catholic, is best known because his efforts to hold office in the Protestant-dominated colony (of Maryland) resulted in the disfranchisement of the colony's Catholics. The second son of Irish Catholic parents, Carroll was educated in France as a lawyer before returning to England, where he pursued the first steps in a legal career. Before that career developed, he secured a position as Attorney General of the young colony of Maryland. Its founder George Calvert and his descendants intended it as a refuge for Catholics. (Full article...)
    Charles Carroll the Settler

    Charles Carroll (1661–1720), sometimes called Charles Carroll the Settler to differentiate him from his son and grandson, was a wealthy lawyer and planter in colonial Maryland. Carroll, a Catholic, is best known because his efforts to hold office in the Protestant-dominated colony (of Maryland) resulted in the disfranchisement of the colony's Catholics.

    The second son of Irish Catholic parents, Carroll was educated in France as a lawyer before returning to England, where he pursued the first steps in a legal career. Before that career developed, he secured a position as Attorney General of the young colony of Maryland. Its founder George Calvert and his descendants intended it as a refuge for Catholics. (Full article...
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  • Image 2 Rachel Carson, 1940 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service employee photo Rachel Louise Carson (May 27, 1907 – April 14, 1964) was an American marine biologist, writer, and conservationist whose influential book Silent Spring (1962) and other writings are credited with advancing the global environmental movement. Carson began her career as an aquatic biologist in the U.S. Bureau of Fisheries, and became a full-time nature writer in the 1950s. Her widely praised 1951 bestseller The Sea Around Us won her a U.S. National Book Award, recognition as a gifted writer and financial security. Her next book, The Edge of the Sea, and the reissued version of her first book, Under the Sea Wind, were also bestsellers. This sea trilogy explores the whole of ocean life from the shores to the depths. Late in the 1950s, Carson turned her attention to conservation, especially some problems she believed were caused by synthetic pesticides. The result was the book Silent Spring (1962), which brought environmental concerns to an unprecedented share of the American people. Although Silent Spring was met with fierce opposition by chemical companies, it spurred a reversal in national pesticide policy, which led to a nationwide ban on DDT and other pesticides. It also inspired a grassroots environmental movement that led to the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Carson was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Jimmy Carter. She wrote 24 books and her most popular book was "Silent Spring." Carson died at age 56 after a long battle against breast cancer. (Full article...)
    Rachel Carson, 1940
    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service employee photo

    Rachel Louise Carson (May 27, 1907 – April 14, 1964) was an American marine biologist, writer, and conservationist whose influential book Silent Spring (1962) and other writings are credited with advancing the global environmental movement.

    Carson began her career as an aquatic biologist in the U.S. Bureau of Fisheries, and became a full-time nature writer in the 1950s. Her widely praised 1951 bestseller The Sea Around Us won her a U.S. National Book Award, recognition as a gifted writer and financial security. Her next book, The Edge of the Sea, and the reissued version of her first book, Under the Sea Wind, were also bestsellers. This sea trilogy explores the whole of ocean life from the shores to the depths.
    Late in the 1950s, Carson turned her attention to conservation, especially some problems she believed were caused by synthetic pesticides. The result was the book Silent Spring (1962), which brought environmental concerns to an unprecedented share of the American people. Although Silent Spring was met with fierce opposition by chemical companies, it spurred a reversal in national pesticide policy, which led to a nationwide ban on DDT and other pesticides. It also inspired a grassroots environmental movement that led to the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Carson was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Jimmy Carter. She wrote 24 books and her most popular book was "Silent Spring." Carson died at age 56 after a long battle against breast cancer. (Full article...
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  • Image 3 Murray in 1928 Margaret Alice Murray (13 July 1863 – 13 November 1963) was an Anglo-Indian Egyptologist, archaeologist, anthropologist, historian, and folklorist. The first woman to be appointed as a lecturer in archaeology in the United Kingdom, she worked at University College London (UCL) from 1898 to 1935. She served as President of the Folklore Society from 1953 to 1955, and published widely over the course of her career. Born to a wealthy middle-class English family in Calcutta, British India, Murray divided her youth between India, Britain, and Germany, training as both a nurse and a social worker. Moving to London, in 1894 she began studying Egyptology at UCL, developing a friendship with department head Flinders Petrie, who encouraged her early academic publications and appointed her Junior Professor in 1898. In 1902–03 she took part in Petrie's excavations at Abydos, Egypt, there discovering the Osireion temple and the following season investigated the Saqqara cemetery, both of which established her reputation in Egyptology. Supplementing her UCL wage by giving public classes and lectures at the British Museum and Manchester Museum, it was at the latter in 1908 that she led the unwrapping of Khnum-nakht, one of the mummies recovered from the Tomb of the Two Brothers – the first time that a woman had publicly unwrapped a mummy. Recognising that British Egyptomania reflected the existence of a widespread public interest in Ancient Egypt, Murray wrote several books on Egyptology targeted at a general audience. (Full article...)
    Murray in 1928

    Margaret Alice Murray (13 July 1863 – 13 November 1963) was an Anglo-Indian Egyptologist, archaeologist, anthropologist, historian, and folklorist. The first woman to be appointed as a lecturer in archaeology in the United Kingdom, she worked at University College London (UCL) from 1898 to 1935. She served as President of the Folklore Society from 1953 to 1955, and published widely over the course of her career.

    Born to a wealthy middle-class English family in Calcutta, British India, Murray divided her youth between India, Britain, and Germany, training as both a nurse and a social worker. Moving to London, in 1894 she began studying Egyptology at UCL, developing a friendship with department head Flinders Petrie, who encouraged her early academic publications and appointed her Junior Professor in 1898. In 1902–03 she took part in Petrie's excavations at Abydos, Egypt, there discovering the Osireion temple and the following season investigated the Saqqara cemetery, both of which established her reputation in Egyptology. Supplementing her UCL wage by giving public classes and lectures at the British Museum and Manchester Museum, it was at the latter in 1908 that she led the unwrapping of Khnum-nakht, one of the mummies recovered from the Tomb of the Two Brothers – the first time that a woman had publicly unwrapped a mummy. Recognising that British Egyptomania reflected the existence of a widespread public interest in Ancient Egypt, Murray wrote several books on Egyptology targeted at a general audience. (Full article...
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  • Image 4 Portrait of Elizabeth Willing Powel by Matthew Pratt, c. 1793 Elizabeth Willing Powel (February 21, 1743 – January 17, 1830) was an American socialite and a prominent member of the Philadelphia upper class of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The daughter and later wife of mayors of Philadelphia, she was a salonnière who hosted frequent gatherings that became a staple of political life in the city. During the First Continental Congress in 1774, Powel opened her home to the delegates and their families, hosting dinner parties and other events. After the American Revolutionary War, she again took her place among the most prominent Philadelphian socialites, establishing a salon of the Republican Court of leading intellectuals and political figures. Powel corresponded widely, including with the political elite of the time. She was a close friend and confidante to George Washington and was among those who convinced him to continue for a second term as president. She wrote extensively, but privately, on a wide range of subjects, including politics, the role of women, medicine, education, and philosophy. Powel is said to be the person who asked Benjamin Franklin, "What have we got, a republic or a monarchy?", to which he reportedly replied, "A republic ... if you can keep it", an often quoted statement about the Constitution of the United States. The exchange was first recorded by James McHenry, a delegate of the Constitutional Convention, in his journal entry dated September 18, 1787. Powel's exchange with Franklin was adapted over time, with the role played by Powel all but removed in 20th-century versions and replaced with an anonymous "lady", "woman", or "concerned citizen". The setting of the conversation was also revised from her home at the Powel House to the steps of Independence Hall. (Full article...)
    Painting of woman, at three-quarter length, wearing a yellow dress with a plunging neckline, which has a white lace trim. Her hands held together in front of her, with fingers entwined. She leans on a stone balustrade, upon which sits an inscribed stone urn. In the distance are green hills and trees.
    Portrait of Elizabeth Willing Powel
    by Matthew Pratt, c. 1793

    Elizabeth Willing Powel (February 21, 1743 – January 17, 1830) was an American socialite and a prominent member of the Philadelphia upper class of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The daughter and later wife of mayors of Philadelphia, she was a salonnière who hosted frequent gatherings that became a staple of political life in the city. During the First Continental Congress in 1774, Powel opened her home to the delegates and their families, hosting dinner parties and other events. After the American Revolutionary War, she again took her place among the most prominent Philadelphian socialites, establishing a salon of the Republican Court of leading intellectuals and political figures.

    Powel corresponded widely, including with the political elite of the time. She was a close friend and confidante to George Washington and was among those who convinced him to continue for a second term as president. She wrote extensively, but privately, on a wide range of subjects, including politics, the role of women, medicine, education, and philosophy. Powel is said to be the person who asked Benjamin Franklin, "What have we got, a republic or a monarchy?", to which he reportedly replied, "A republic ... if you can keep it", an often quoted statement about the Constitution of the United States. The exchange was first recorded by James McHenry, a delegate of the Constitutional Convention, in his journal entry dated September 18, 1787. Powel's exchange with Franklin was adapted over time, with the role played by Powel all but removed in 20th-century versions and replaced with an anonymous "lady", "woman", or "concerned citizen". The setting of the conversation was also revised from her home at the Powel House to the steps of Independence Hall. (Full article...
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  • Image 5 Eaton in 1991 Bobby Lee Eaton (August 14, 1958 – August 4, 2021) was an American professional wrestler best known as "Beautiful" Bobby Eaton. He was most famous for his work in tag teams, especially as one-half of The Midnight Express. Under the management of Jim Cornette, he originally teamed with Dennis Condrey and, later on, with Stan Lane. He also worked with a number of other tag team partners, including Arn Anderson, Koko B. Ware, Steve Keirn, and Lord Steven Regal. Over the course of his career, which lasted from 1976 to 2015, Eaton wrestled for extended periods of time for various wrestling promotions: NWA Mid-America, Continental Wrestling Association, Mid-South Wrestling, World Class Championship Wrestling, Jim Crockett Promotions, World Championship Wrestling, and Smoky Mountain Wrestling. He also made brief guest appearances for Extreme Championship Wrestling, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, and a considerable number of independent wrestling promotions over the years. He held a large number of championships, including the NWA/WCW World Tag Team Championship on three occasions. Eaton was inducted into the Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame in 2009 and the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2019. (Full article...)
    Eaton in 1991

    Bobby Lee Eaton (August 14, 1958 – August 4, 2021) was an American professional wrestler best known as "Beautiful" Bobby Eaton. He was most famous for his work in tag teams, especially as one-half of The Midnight Express. Under the management of Jim Cornette, he originally teamed with Dennis Condrey and, later on, with Stan Lane. He also worked with a number of other tag team partners, including Arn Anderson, Koko B. Ware, Steve Keirn, and Lord Steven Regal.

    Over the course of his career, which lasted from 1976 to 2015, Eaton wrestled for extended periods of time for various wrestling promotions: NWA Mid-America, Continental Wrestling Association, Mid-South Wrestling, World Class Championship Wrestling, Jim Crockett Promotions, World Championship Wrestling, and Smoky Mountain Wrestling. He also made brief guest appearances for Extreme Championship Wrestling, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, and a considerable number of independent wrestling promotions over the years. He held a large number of championships, including the NWA/WCW World Tag Team Championship on three occasions. Eaton was inducted into the Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame in 2009 and the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2019. (Full article...
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  • Image 6 Self-portrait of Thirtle in 1816 John Thirtle (baptised 22 June 1777 – 30 September 1839) was an English watercolour artist and frame-maker. Born in Norwich, where he lived for most of his life, he was a leading member of the Norwich School of painters. Much of Thirtle's life is undocumented. After working as an apprentice to a London frame-maker, he returned to Norwich to establish his own frame-making business. During his career he also worked as a drawing-master, a printseller and a looking glass maker. He produced frames for paintings by several members of the Norwich School, including John Crome and John Sell Cotman. Throughout his working life he continued to paint. In 1812 he married Elizabeth Miles, the sister of Cotman's wife Ann. Thirtle suffered from tuberculosis during the last two decades of his life, and his worsening health reduced his artistic output up to his death in 1839. His Manuscript Treatise on Watercolour, unpublished before 1977, was probably for his own use, and he exhibited fewer than 100 paintings. A member of the Norwich Society of Artists, he briefly served as its vice-president, but in 1816 was one of the artists who seceded from the Society to form a separate association, the Norfolk and Norwich Society of Artists, which dissolved after three years. (Full article...)
    self portrait of Thirtle
    Self-portrait of Thirtle in 1816

    John Thirtle (baptised 22 June 1777 – 30 September 1839) was an English watercolour artist and frame-maker. Born in Norwich, where he lived for most of his life, he was a leading member of the Norwich School of painters.

    Much of Thirtle's life is undocumented. After working as an apprentice to a London frame-maker, he returned to Norwich to establish his own frame-making business. During his career he also worked as a drawing-master, a printseller and a looking glass maker. He produced frames for paintings by several members of the Norwich School, including John Crome and John Sell Cotman. Throughout his working life he continued to paint. In 1812 he married Elizabeth Miles, the sister of Cotman's wife Ann. Thirtle suffered from tuberculosis during the last two decades of his life, and his worsening health reduced his artistic output up to his death in 1839. His Manuscript Treatise on Watercolour, unpublished before 1977, was probably for his own use, and he exhibited fewer than 100 paintings. A member of the Norwich Society of Artists, he briefly served as its vice-president, but in 1816 was one of the artists who seceded from the Society to form a separate association, the Norfolk and Norwich Society of Artists, which dissolved after three years. (Full article...
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  • Image 7 Mu'awiya I (Arabic: معاوية بن أبي سفيان, romanized: Muʿāwiya ibn Abī Sufyān; c. 597, 603 or 605–April 680) was the founder and first caliph of the Umayyad Caliphate, ruling from 661 until his death. He became caliph less than thirty years after the death of the Islamic prophet Muhammad and immediately after the four Rashidun ('rightly-guided') caliphs. Unlike his predecessors, who had been close, early companions of Muhammad, Mu'awiya was a relatively late follower of the Islamic prophet. Mu'awiya and his father Abu Sufyan had opposed Muhammad, their distant Qurayshite kinsman and later Mu'awiya's brother-in-law, until Muhammad captured Mecca in 630. Afterward, Mu'awiya became one of Muhammad's scribes. He was appointed by Caliph Abu Bakr (r. 632–634) as a deputy commander in the conquest of Syria. He moved up the ranks through Umar's caliphate (r. 634–644) until becoming governor of Syria during the reign of his Umayyad kinsman, Caliph Uthman (r. 644–656). He allied with the province's powerful Banu Kalb tribe, developed the defenses of its coastal cities, and directed the war effort against the Byzantine Empire, including the first Muslim naval campaigns. In response to Uthman's assassination in 656, Mu'awiya took up the cause of avenging the caliph and opposed his successor, Ali. During the First Muslim Civil War, the two led their armies to a stalemate at the Battle of Siffin in 657, prompting an abortive series of arbitration talks to settle the dispute. Afterward, Mu'awiya gained recognition as caliph by his Syrian supporters and his ally Amr ibn al-As, who conquered Egypt from Ali's governor in 658. Following the assassination of Ali in 661, Mu'awiya compelled Ali's son and successor Hasan to abdicate and Mu'awiya's suzerainty was acknowledged throughout the Caliphate. (Full article...)
    Mu'awiya I (Arabic: معاوية بن أبي سفيان, romanizedMuʿāwiya ibn Abī Sufyān; c. 597, 603 or 605–April 680) was the founder and first caliph of the Umayyad Caliphate, ruling from 661 until his death. He became caliph less than thirty years after the death of the Islamic prophet Muhammad and immediately after the four Rashidun ('rightly-guided') caliphs. Unlike his predecessors, who had been close, early companions of Muhammad, Mu'awiya was a relatively late follower of the Islamic prophet.

    Mu'awiya and his father Abu Sufyan had opposed Muhammad, their distant Qurayshite kinsman and later Mu'awiya's brother-in-law, until Muhammad captured Mecca in 630. Afterward, Mu'awiya became one of Muhammad's scribes. He was appointed by Caliph Abu Bakr (r. 632–634) as a deputy commander in the conquest of Syria. He moved up the ranks through Umar's caliphate (r. 634–644) until becoming governor of Syria during the reign of his Umayyad kinsman, Caliph Uthman (r. 644–656). He allied with the province's powerful Banu Kalb tribe, developed the defenses of its coastal cities, and directed the war effort against the Byzantine Empire, including the first Muslim naval campaigns. In response to Uthman's assassination in 656, Mu'awiya took up the cause of avenging the caliph and opposed his successor, Ali. During the First Muslim Civil War, the two led their armies to a stalemate at the Battle of Siffin in 657, prompting an abortive series of arbitration talks to settle the dispute. Afterward, Mu'awiya gained recognition as caliph by his Syrian supporters and his ally Amr ibn al-As, who conquered Egypt from Ali's governor in 658. Following the assassination of Ali in 661, Mu'awiya compelled Ali's son and successor Hasan to abdicate and Mu'awiya's suzerainty was acknowledged throughout the Caliphate. (Full article...)
  • Image 8 Datuk Mohammad Nor bin Mohammad Khalid (Jawi: محمد نور بن محمد خالد; born 5 March 1951), more commonly known as Lat, is a Malaysian cartoonist. Winner of the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prize in 2002, Lat has published more than 20 volumes of cartoons since he was 13 years old. His works mostly illustrate Malaysia's social and political scenes, portraying them in a comedic light without bias. Lat's best known work is The Kampung Boy (1979), which is published in several countries across the world. In 1994, the Sultan of Perak bestowed the honorific title of datuk on Lat, in recognition of the cartoonist's work in helping to promote social harmony and understanding through his cartoons. Lat also works for the government to improve the city's social security. Born in a village, Lat spent his youth in the countryside before moving to the city at the age of 11. While in school, he supplemented his family's income by contributing cartoon strips to newspapers and magazines. He was 13 years old when he achieved his first published comic book, Tiga Sekawan (Three Friends Catch a Thief). After failing to attain the grades that were required to continue education beyond high school, Lat became a newspaper reporter. In 1974, he switched careers to be an editorial cartoonist. His works, reflecting his view about Malaysian life and the world, are staple features in national newspapers such as New Straits Times and Berita Minggu. He adapted his life experiences and published them as his autobiographies, The Kampung Boy and Town Boy, telling stories of rural and urban life with comparisons between the two. (Full article...)
    A bespectacled man with a round face

    Datuk Mohammad Nor bin Mohammad Khalid (Jawi: محمد نور بن محمد خالد; born 5 March 1951), more commonly known as Lat, is a Malaysian cartoonist. Winner of the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prize in 2002, Lat has published more than 20 volumes of cartoons since he was 13 years old. His works mostly illustrate Malaysia's social and political scenes, portraying them in a comedic light without bias. Lat's best known work is The Kampung Boy (1979), which is published in several countries across the world. In 1994, the Sultan of Perak bestowed the honorific title of datuk on Lat, in recognition of the cartoonist's work in helping to promote social harmony and understanding through his cartoons. Lat also works for the government to improve the city's social security.

    Born in a village, Lat spent his youth in the countryside before moving to the city at the age of 11. While in school, he supplemented his family's income by contributing cartoon strips to newspapers and magazines. He was 13 years old when he achieved his first published comic book, Tiga Sekawan (Three Friends Catch a Thief). After failing to attain the grades that were required to continue education beyond high school, Lat became a newspaper reporter. In 1974, he switched careers to be an editorial cartoonist. His works, reflecting his view about Malaysian life and the world, are staple features in national newspapers such as New Straits Times and Berita Minggu. He adapted his life experiences and published them as his autobiographies, The Kampung Boy and Town Boy, telling stories of rural and urban life with comparisons between the two. (Full article...
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  • Image 9 Squadron Leader Waddy at Morotai c. 1945 John Lloyd Waddy, OBE, DFC (10 December 1916 – 11 September 1987) was a senior officer and aviator in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), and later served as a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly and Minister of the Crown. As a fighter pilot during World War II, he shot down 15 enemy aircraft during the North African campaign, becoming one of Australia's top-scoring aces and earning the Distinguished Flying Cross. Waddy went on to command No. 80 Squadron in the South West Pacific, where he was awarded the US Air Medal. He was one of eight senior pilots who took part in the "Morotai Mutiny" of April 1945. Discharged from the Permanent Air Force at the end of the war, Waddy took a commission in the RAAF Reserve and led the organisation as a group captain in the early 1950s. He was active in business and in veterans' groups, and was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1955. From 1962 to 1976, he was the Member for Kirribilli in the New South Wales Parliament, representing the Liberal Party. He held cabinet posts including Minister for Child Welfare and Social Welfare (later Youth and Community Services), Minister for Health, and Minister for Police and Services. Waddy retired from politics in 1976, and died in 1987 at the age of 70. (Full article...)
    Half-length portrait of seated man in tropical military uniform with pilot's wings on left breast pocket
    Squadron Leader Waddy at Morotai c. 1945

    John Lloyd Waddy, OBE, DFC (10 December 1916 – 11 September 1987) was a senior officer and aviator in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), and later served as a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly and Minister of the Crown. As a fighter pilot during World War II, he shot down 15 enemy aircraft during the North African campaign, becoming one of Australia's top-scoring aces and earning the Distinguished Flying Cross. Waddy went on to command No. 80 Squadron in the South West Pacific, where he was awarded the US Air Medal. He was one of eight senior pilots who took part in the "Morotai Mutiny" of April 1945.

    Discharged from the Permanent Air Force at the end of the war, Waddy took a commission in the RAAF Reserve and led the organisation as a group captain in the early 1950s. He was active in business and in veterans' groups, and was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1955. From 1962 to 1976, he was the Member for Kirribilli in the New South Wales Parliament, representing the Liberal Party. He held cabinet posts including Minister for Child Welfare and Social Welfare (later Youth and Community Services), Minister for Health, and Minister for Police and Services. Waddy retired from politics in 1976, and died in 1987 at the age of 70. (Full article...
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  • Image 10 Donald Forrester Brown, VC (23 February 1890 – 1 October 1916) was a New Zealand recipient of the Victoria Cross (VC), the highest award for valour "in the face of the enemy" that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces. Born in Dunedin, Brown was a farmer when the First World War began. In late 1915, he volunteered for service abroad with the New Zealand Expeditionary Force (NZEF) and was posted to the 2nd Battalion, the Otago Infantry Regiment. He saw action on the Western Front, and was awarded the VC for his actions during the Battle of Flers–Courcelette in September 1916. As he was killed several days later during the Battle of Le Transloy, the award was made posthumously. His VC was the second to be awarded to a soldier serving with the NZEF during the war and was the first earned in an action on the Western Front. (Full article...)
    Head and shoulders portrait of a man in military uniform

    Donald Forrester Brown, VC (23 February 1890 – 1 October 1916) was a New Zealand recipient of the Victoria Cross (VC), the highest award for valour "in the face of the enemy" that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.

    Born in Dunedin, Brown was a farmer when the First World War began. In late 1915, he volunteered for service abroad with the New Zealand Expeditionary Force (NZEF) and was posted to the 2nd Battalion, the Otago Infantry Regiment. He saw action on the Western Front, and was awarded the VC for his actions during the Battle of Flers–Courcelette in September 1916. As he was killed several days later during the Battle of Le Transloy, the award was made posthumously. His VC was the second to be awarded to a soldier serving with the NZEF during the war and was the first earned in an action on the Western Front. (Full article...
    )
  • Image 11 Honório Hermeto Carneiro Leão, Marquis of Paraná, at age 55, 1856 Honório Hermeto Carneiro Leão, Marquis of Paraná (11 January 1801 – 3 September 1856) was a politician, diplomat, judge and monarchist of the Empire of Brazil. Paraná was born to a family of humble means in São Carlos do Jacuí, in what was then the captaincy of Minas Gerais. After attending the University of Coimbra in Portugal and having returned to Brazil, Paraná was appointed a judge in 1826 and later elevated to appellate court justice. In 1830, he was elected to represent Minas Gerais in the Chamber of Deputies; he was re-elected in 1834 and 1838, and held the post until 1841. In the aftermath of Dom Pedro I's abdication in 1831, a regency created to govern Brazil during the minority of the former Emperor's son, Dom Pedro II, soon dissolved into chaos. Paraná formed a political party in 1837 that became known as the Reactionary Party, which evolved into the Party of Order in the early 1840s and in the mid-1850s into the Conservative Party. He and his party's stalwart and unconditional defence of constitutional order allowed the country to move beyond a regency plagued by factious disputes and rebellions that might easily have led to a dictatorship. Appointed president of Rio de Janeiro Province in 1841, Paraná helped put down a rebellion headed by the opposition Liberal Party the following year. Also in 1842, he was elected senator for Minas Gerais and appointed by Pedro II to the Council of State. In 1843, he became the de facto first president (prime minister) of the Council of Ministers, but resigned after a quarrel with the Emperor. (Full article...)
    Official half-length portrait of the Marquis, who is seated with official hat in hand and wearing white gloves and a gold embroidered tunic with medals of various orders, over which is worn a red sash of office.
    Honório Hermeto Carneiro Leão, Marquis of Paraná, at age 55, 1856

    Honório Hermeto Carneiro Leão, Marquis of Paraná (11 January 1801 – 3 September 1856) was a politician, diplomat, judge and monarchist of the Empire of Brazil. Paraná was born to a family of humble means in São Carlos do Jacuí, in what was then the captaincy of Minas Gerais. After attending the University of Coimbra in Portugal and having returned to Brazil, Paraná was appointed a judge in 1826 and later elevated to appellate court justice. In 1830, he was elected to represent Minas Gerais in the Chamber of Deputies; he was re-elected in 1834 and 1838, and held the post until 1841.

    In the aftermath of Dom Pedro I's abdication in 1831, a regency created to govern Brazil during the minority of the former Emperor's son, Dom Pedro II, soon dissolved into chaos. Paraná formed a political party in 1837 that became known as the Reactionary Party, which evolved into the Party of Order in the early 1840s and in the mid-1850s into the Conservative Party. He and his party's stalwart and unconditional defence of constitutional order allowed the country to move beyond a regency plagued by factious disputes and rebellions that might easily have led to a dictatorship. Appointed president of Rio de Janeiro Province in 1841, Paraná helped put down a rebellion headed by the opposition Liberal Party the following year. Also in 1842, he was elected senator for Minas Gerais and appointed by Pedro II to the Council of State. In 1843, he became the de facto first president (prime minister) of the Council of Ministers, but resigned after a quarrel with the Emperor. (Full article...
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  • Image 12 Sir Michael Kemp Tippett OM CH CBE (2 January 1905 – 8 January 1998) was an English composer who rose to prominence during and immediately after the Second World War. In his lifetime he was sometimes ranked with his contemporary Benjamin Britten as one of the leading British composers of the 20th century. Among his best-known works are the oratorio A Child of Our Time, the orchestral Fantasia Concertante on a Theme of Corelli, and the opera The Midsummer Marriage. Tippett's talent developed slowly. He withdrew or destroyed his earliest compositions, and was 30 before any of his works were published. Until the mid-to-late 1950s his music was broadly lyrical in character, before changing to a more astringent and experimental style. New influences, including those of jazz and blues after his first visit to America in 1965, became increasingly evident in his compositions. While Tippett's stature with the public continued to grow, not all critics approved of these changes in style, some believing that the quality of his work suffered as a consequence. From around 1976 Tippett's late works began to reflect the works of his youth through a return to lyricism. Although he was much honoured in his lifetime, critical judgement on Tippett's legacy has been uneven, the greatest praise being generally reserved for his earlier works. His centenary in 2005 was a muted affair; apart from the few best-known works, his music has been performed infrequently in the 21st century. (Full article...)
    Sir Michael Kemp Tippett OM CH CBE (2 January 1905 – 8 January 1998) was an English composer who rose to prominence during and immediately after the Second World War. In his lifetime he was sometimes ranked with his contemporary Benjamin Britten as one of the leading British composers of the 20th century. Among his best-known works are the oratorio A Child of Our Time, the orchestral Fantasia Concertante on a Theme of Corelli, and the opera The Midsummer Marriage.

    Tippett's talent developed slowly. He withdrew or destroyed his earliest compositions, and was 30 before any of his works were published. Until the mid-to-late 1950s his music was broadly lyrical in character, before changing to a more astringent and experimental style. New influences, including those of jazz and blues after his first visit to America in 1965, became increasingly evident in his compositions. While Tippett's stature with the public continued to grow, not all critics approved of these changes in style, some believing that the quality of his work suffered as a consequence. From around 1976 Tippett's late works began to reflect the works of his youth through a return to lyricism. Although he was much honoured in his lifetime, critical judgement on Tippett's legacy has been uneven, the greatest praise being generally reserved for his earlier works. His centenary in 2005 was a muted affair; apart from the few best-known works, his music has been performed infrequently in the 21st century. (Full article...)
  • Image 13 The location of Deusdedit's unmarked grave, at St Augustine's Abbey in Canterbury. The graves marked with stones are those of Justus, Mellitus, and Laurence. Deusdedit (died c. 664) was a medieval Archbishop of Canterbury, the first native-born holder of the see of Canterbury. By birth an Anglo-Saxon, he became archbishop in 655 and held the office for more than nine years until his death, probably from plague. Deusdedit's successor as archbishop was one of his priests at Canterbury. There is some controversy over the exact date of Deusdedit's death, owing to discrepancies in the medieval written work that records his life. Little is known about his episcopate, but he was considered to be a saint after his demise. A saint's life was written after his relics were moved from their original burial place in 1091. (Full article...)
    The location of Deusdedit's unmarked grave, at St Augustine's Abbey in Canterbury. The graves marked with stones are those of Justus, Mellitus, and Laurence.

    Deusdedit (died c. 664) was a medieval Archbishop of Canterbury, the first native-born holder of the see of Canterbury. By birth an Anglo-Saxon, he became archbishop in 655 and held the office for more than nine years until his death, probably from plague. Deusdedit's successor as archbishop was one of his priests at Canterbury. There is some controversy over the exact date of Deusdedit's death, owing to discrepancies in the medieval written work that records his life. Little is known about his episcopate, but he was considered to be a saint after his demise. A saint's life was written after his relics were moved from their original burial place in 1091. (Full article...
    )
  • Image 14 Benjamin Franklin Peale (born Aldrovand Peale; October 15, 1795 – May 5, 1870) was an employee and officer of the Philadelphia Mint from 1833 to 1854. Although Peale introduced many innovations to the Mint of the United States, he was eventually dismissed amid allegations he had used his position for personal gain. Peale was the son of painter Charles Willson Peale, and was born in the museum of curiosities that his father ran in Philadelphia. For the most part, Franklin Peale's education was informal, though he took some classes at the University of Pennsylvania. He became adept in machine making. In 1820, he became an assistant to his father at the museum, and managed it after Charles Peale's death in 1827. (Full article...)
    Franklin Peale.jpg

    Benjamin Franklin Peale (born Aldrovand Peale; October 15, 1795 – May 5, 1870) was an employee and officer of the Philadelphia Mint from 1833 to 1854. Although Peale introduced many innovations to the Mint of the United States, he was eventually dismissed amid allegations he had used his position for personal gain.

    Peale was the son of painter Charles Willson Peale, and was born in the museum of curiosities that his father ran in Philadelphia. For the most part, Franklin Peale's education was informal, though he took some classes at the University of Pennsylvania. He became adept in machine making. In 1820, he became an assistant to his father at the museum, and managed it after Charles Peale's death in 1827. (Full article...
    )
  • Image 15 Wagner in 1879, painted by Franz von Lenbach Francesca Gaetana Cosima Wagner (née Liszt; 24 December 1837 – 1 April 1930) was the daughter of the Hungarian composer and pianist Franz Liszt and Franco-German romantic author Marie d'Agoult. She became the second wife of the German composer Richard Wagner, and with him founded the Bayreuth Festival as a showcase for his stage works; after his death she devoted the rest of her life to the promotion of his music and philosophy. Commentators have recognised Cosima as the principal inspiration for Wagner's later works, particularly Parsifal. In 1857, after a childhood largely spent under the care of her grandmother and with governesses, Cosima married the conductor Hans von Bülow. Although the marriage produced two children, it was largely a loveless union, and in 1863 Cosima began a relationship with Wagner, who was 24 years her senior. They married in 1870; after Wagner's death in 1883 she directed the Bayreuth Festival for more than 20 years, increasing its repertoire to form the Bayreuth canon of ten operas and establishing the festival as a major event in the world of musical theatre. (Full article...)
    Wagner in 1879, painted by Franz von Lenbach


    Francesca Gaetana Cosima Wagner (née Liszt; 24 December 1837 – 1 April 1930) was the daughter of the Hungarian composer and pianist Franz Liszt and Franco-German romantic author Marie d'Agoult. She became the second wife of the German composer Richard Wagner, and with him founded the Bayreuth Festival as a showcase for his stage works; after his death she devoted the rest of her life to the promotion of his music and philosophy. Commentators have recognised Cosima as the principal inspiration for Wagner's later works, particularly Parsifal.

    In 1857, after a childhood largely spent under the care of her grandmother and with governesses, Cosima married the conductor Hans von Bülow. Although the marriage produced two children, it was largely a loveless union, and in 1863 Cosima began a relationship with Wagner, who was 24 years her senior. They married in 1870; after Wagner's death in 1883 she directed the Bayreuth Festival for more than 20 years, increasing its repertoire to form the Bayreuth canon of ten operas and establishing the festival as a major event in the world of musical theatre. (Full article...
    )

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16 March 2022 – China–United States relations, Chinese espionage in the United States
Prosecutors for the U.S. Justice Department accuse five people working on behalf of the Chinese Ministry of State Security of conspiring to spy on and intimidate several dissidents living in the United States, such as the father of Olympic figure skater Alysa Liu, and Tiananmen Square protest leader and current congressional candidate Xiong Yan. The department says it is the first time that federal elections in the country have been interfered with in this manner. Three have been arrested while two remain at large. (The Guardian) (BBC News)
15 March 2022 –
Burkinabè architect Diébédo Francis Kéré wins the 2022 Pritzker Architecture Prize, becoming the first African and black person to do so. (The Guardian)
11 March 2022 – Protests against the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny renews calls for anti-war and anti-Putin protests in cities across Russia. (Reuters)
11 March 2022 –
Gabriel Boric is sworn-in as President of Chile, becoming the youngest person to serve as President. (Reuters)
10 March 2022 – 2022 South Korean presidential election
Conservative opposition leader Yoon Suk-yeol is confirmed as the winner of yesterday's presidential election with 48.59% of the vote. He will take office as President of South Korea on May 10. (BBC News)
8 March 2022 – Aftermath of the 2021 United States Capitol attack
Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio is indicted on conspiracy charges of obstructing the U.S. Congress during the January 6 attack at the United States Capitol. (Politico)
Updated: 1:33, 20 March 2022

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"Most people today still believe, perhaps unconsciously, in the heliocentric universe ... every newspaper in the land has a section on astrology, yet few have anything at all on astronomy."

Hannes Alfvén

Quoted by Anthony Peratt in The World & I, May 1988, pp. 190–197.

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