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1996 NBA All-Star Game

The 1996 NBA All-Star Game was the 46th edition of the NBA All-Star Game, an exhibition basketball game played on Sunday February 11, 1996. The event was held at the Alamodome in San Antonio and was a part of the 50th season of the NBA; the game was televised by CTV in Canada. There were 36,037 people in attendance. Michael Jordan put on a show for the fans in his first game back from retirement and ended up receiving the game's most valuable player award. Phil Jackson from the Chicago Bulls coached the Eastern Conference and George Karl from the Seattle SuperSonics coached the Western Conference; the rosters for the All-Star game were chosen via a fan ballot. The fans would vote for every position, as well as the coaches, the players that received the most votes would be placed on a team. If a player were unable to participate due to an injury the commissioner would select another player as a replacement. Grant Hill led the all-star voting with 1,358,004 votes with Michael Jordan being right behind him with 1,341,422 votes.

The rest of the Eastern conference starters were Anfernee Hardaway, Scottie Pippen and Shaquille O’Neal. The reserves included Reggie Miller, Vin Baker and Terrell Brandon. For the West, the person that led the all-star voting was Charles Barkley with 1,268,195 votes. Clyde Drexler, after seven appearances with Portland Trail Blazers, appeared in the game for the first time as a Houston Rocket; the rest of the Western starters were Jason Kidd, Shawn Kemp, Hakeem Olajuwon. The reserves included David Robinson, Gary Payton, Sean Elliott, Karl Malone; this game was the first All-Star game that Michael Jordan played in after returning from his first retirement. He scored 4 rebounds and 1 assist shooting at about a 73 % average for the game. Shaquille O'Neal, scored 25 points with 10 rebounds. For the West on the other hand, Jason Kidd was the assist leader with 10 assists in his first All-Star Game appearance; the scoring leaders for the West were David Robinson and Gary Payton with both players contributing 18 points respectively.

The East won the game with a score of 129-118. Although there was a great deal of controversy with fans saying that Shaquille O’Neal deserved the award, Michael Jordan ended up receiving the All-Star game's Most Valuable Player

Blue and white pottery

"Blue and white pottery" covers a wide range of white pottery and porcelain decorated under the glaze with a blue pigment cobalt oxide. The decoration is applied by hand by brush painting, but nowadays by stencilling or by transfer-printing, though other methods of application have been used; the cobalt pigment is one of the few that can withstand the highest firing temperatures that are required, in particular for porcelain, which accounts for its long-lasting popularity. Many other colours required overglaze decoration and a second firing at a lower temperature to fix that; the origin of this decorative style is thought to lie in Iraq, when craftsmen in Basra sought to imitate imported white Chinese stoneware with their own tin-glazed, white pottery and added decorative motifs in blue glazes. Such Abbasid-era "blue and white" pieces have been found in present-day Iraq dating to the 9th century A. D. decades after the opening of a direct sea route from Iraq to China. In China, a style of decoration based on sinuous plant forms spreading across the object was perfected and most used.

Blue and white decoration first became used in Chinese porcelain in the 14th century, after the cobalt pigment for the blue began to be imported from Persia. It was exported, inspired imitative wares in Islamic ceramics, in Japan, European tin-glazed earthenware such as Delftware and after the techniques were discovered in the 18th century, European porcelain. Blue and white pottery in all of these traditions continues to be produced, most of it copying earlier styles. Blue glazes were first developed by ancient Mesopotamians to imitate lapis lazuli, a prized stone. A cobalt blue glaze became popular in Islamic pottery during the Abbasid Caliphate, during which time the cobalt was mined near Kashan and Northern Hejaz; the first Chinese blue and white wares were produced as early as the first century in Henan province, China during the Tang Dynasty, although only shards have been discovered. Tang period blue-and-white is more rare than Song blue-and-white and was unknown before 1985; the Tang pieces are not porcelain however, but rather earthenwares with greenish white slip, using cobalt blue pigments.

The only three pieces of complete "Tang blue and white" in the world were recovered from Indonesian Belitung shipwreck in 1998 and sold to Singapore. It appears. In the early 20th century, the development of the classic blue and white Jingdezhen ware porcelain was dated to the early Ming period, but consensus now agrees that these wares began to be made around 1300-1320, were developed by the mid-century, as shown by the David Vases dated 1351, which are cornerstones for this chronology. There are still those arguing that early pieces are mis-dated, in fact go back to the Southern Song, but most scholars continue to reject this view. In the early 14th century, mass-production of fine, translucent and white porcelain started at Jingdezhen, sometimes called the porcelain capital of China; this development was due to the combination of Islamic trade. The new ware was made possible by the export of cobalt from Persia, combined with the translucent white quality of Chinese porcelain, derived from kaolin.

Cobalt blue was considered with a value about twice that of gold. Motifs draw inspiration from Islamic decorations. A large portion of these blue-and-white wares were shipped to Southwest-Asian markets through the Muslim traders based in Guangzhou. Chinese blue and white porcelain was once-fired: after the porcelain body was dried, decorated with refined cobalt-blue pigment mixed with water and applied using a brush, coated with a clear glaze and fired at high temperature. From the 16th century, local sources of cobalt blue started to be developed, although Persian cobalt remained the most expensive. Production of blue and white wares has continued at Jingdezhen to this day. Blue and white porcelain made at Jingdezhen reached the height of its technical excellence during the reign of the Kangxi Emperor of the Qing dynasty; the true development of blue and white ware in China started with the first half of the 14th century, when it progressively replaced the centuries-long tradition of unpainted bluish-white southern Chinese porcelain, or Qingbai, as well as Ding ware from the north.

The best, the main production was in Jingdezhen porcelain from Jiangxi Province. There was a considerable tradition of painted Chinese ceramics represented at that time by the popular stoneware Cizhou ware, but this was not used by the court. For the first time in centuries the new blue and white appealed to the taste of the Mongol rulers of China. Blue and white ware began making its appearance in Japan, where it was known as sometsuke. Various forms and decorations were influenced by China, but developed its own forms and styles. With the advent of the Ming dynasty in 1368, blue and white ware was shunned for a time by the Court under the Hongwu and Yongle Emperors, as being too foreign in inspiration. Blue and white porcelain however came back to prominence with the Xuande Emperor, again developed from that time on. In this century a number of experiments were made combining underglaze blue and other colours, both underglaze and overglaze enamels. Copper and iron reds were the most common, but these were much more difficult to fire reliably than cobalt blue, produced a high rate of mis-fired wares, where a dull grey replace

Murter

Murter is an island in the Croatian part of the Adriatic Sea. The town of Murter is located on the north-western part of the island. Other settlements on the island include the small town of Betina on the northwestern side and Jezera and Tisno on the southeastern coast. In the 2011 census, the total island population is about 5,138 inhabitants; the island is in the northwest part of the Šibenik archipelago, separated from the mainland by a 20 m wide sea canal at Tisno, spanned by a short draw-bridge. The island covers an area of about 18.7 km2, the highest point is the peak of Raduč at 125 metres above sea level. There are old; the southwestern coastline is predominantly steep slopes divided by many sandy coves. The island has lots of rocky beaches, as well as several sandy ones; the island has been populated for nearly two millennia. An Illyric-Roman settlement known as Colentum has been found near Betina. In 1293, documents show. During the 13th century there were two documented settlements on the island—Jezera and Veliko selo, Srimač -- and the island itself was mentioned in the year 1318 as Insula Mortari.

Betina and Tisno were most built around the beginning of the 15th century, during the time of Ottoman attacks in the area. The population of the island increased. In a naval battle on June 1944, the Yugoslav torpedo boat T7 - part of the pro-Nazi Navy of the Independent State of Croatia - was driven aground on Murter and destroyed by Royal Navy Fairmile D motor torpedo boats. Many Christian texts written in Glagolitic/Slavonic instead of the traditional Latin style have been found and are preserved here and in the Vatican. St. Michael's church, St. Rock's chapel, the church of Our Lady of Gradina are the oldest churches on the island; the population of Murter traditionally deal with agriculture and fishing and are well known for these skills, as well as being producers of excellent olive oil. Beaches, quality accommodation and various services make Murter an ideal tourist destination, has been one of the most visited destinations in this region for years. What is unknown is that the island had a military base built in World War Two on top of the hill, with tunnels bored deep inside it.

Some locals believe the place is haunted