Franz Xaver Winterhalter
Franz Xaver Winterhalter was a German painter and lithographer, known for his portraits of royalty in the mid-19th century. His name has become associated with fashionable court portraiture. Among his best known works are Empress Eugénie Surrounded by her Ladies in Waiting and the portraits he made of Empress Elisabeth of Austria. Franz Xaver Winterhalter was born in the small village of Menzenschwand, in Germany's Black Forest in the Electorate of Baden, on 20 April 1805, he was the sixth child of Fidel Winterhalter, a farmer and resin producer in the village, his wife Eva Meyer, a member of a long established Menzenschwand family. His father was a powerful influence in his life. Of the eight brothers and sisters, only four survived infancy. Throughout his life Franz Xaver remained close to his family, in particular to his brother Hermann, a painter. After attending school at a Benedictine monastery in St. Blasien, Winterhalter left Menzenschwand in 1818 at the age of 13 to study drawing and engraving.
He trained as a draughtsman and lithographer in the workshop of Karl Ludwig Schüler in Freiburg im Breisgau. In 1823, at the age of 18, he went to Munich, sponsored by the industrialist Baron von Eichtal. In 1825, he was granted a stipend by Ludwig I, Grand Duke of Baden and began a course of study at the Academy of Arts in Munich with Peter von Cornelius, whose academic methods made him uncomfortable. Winterhalter found a more congenial mentor in the fashionable portraitist Joseph Karl Stieler. During this time, he supported himself working as lithographer. Winterhalter entered court circles when in 1828 he became drawing master to Sophie Margravine of Baden, at Karlsruhe, his opportunity to establish himself beyond southern Germany came in 1832 when he was able to travel to Italy, 1833–1834, with the support of Grand Duke Leopold of Baden. In Rome he composed romantic genre scenes in the manner of Louis Léopold Robert and attached himself to the circle of the director of the French Academy, Horace Vernet.
On his return to Karlsruhe he painted portraits of the Grand Duke Leopold of Baden and his wife, was appointed painter to the grand-ducal court. He left Baden to move to France, where his Italian genre scene Il dolce Farniente attracted notice at the Salon of 1836. Il Decameron a year was praised. In the Salon of 1838 he exhibited a portrait of the Prince of Wagram with his young daughter, his career as a portrait painter was soon secured when in the same year he painted Louise Marie of Orleans, Queen of the Belgians, her son. It was through this painting that Winterhalter came to the notice of Maria Amalia of the Two Sicilies, Queen of the French, mother of the Queen of the Belgians. In Paris, Winterhalter became fashionable, he was appointed court painter of Louis-Philippe, the king of the French, who commissioned him to paint individual portraits of his large family. Winterhalter would execute more than thirty commissions for him; this success earned the painter the reputation of a specialist in dynastic and aristocratic portraiture, skilled in combining likeness with flattery and enlivening official pomp with modern fashion.
However, Winterhalter's reputation in artistic circles suffered. The critics, who had praised his debut in the salon of 1836, dismissed him as a painter who could not be taken seriously; this attitude persisted throughout Winterhalter's career, condemning his work to a category of his own in the hierarchy of painting. Winterhalter himself regarded his first royal commissions as a temporary intermission before returning to subject painting and the field of academic respectability, but he was a victim of his own success, for the rest of his life he worked exclusively as a portrait painter, his success in this field made him rich. Winterhalter became an international celebrity enjoying Royal patronage. Among his many regal sitters was Queen Victoria. Winterhalter first visited England in 1842, returned several times to paint Victoria, Prince Albert and their growing family, painting at least 120 works for them, a large number of which remain in the Royal Collection, on display to the public at Buckingham Palace and other royal residences.
Winterhalter painted a few portraits of the aristocracy in England members of court circles. The fall of Louis-Philippe in 1848 did not affect the painter's reputation. Winterhalter worked in Belgium and England. Persistence saw. Paris remained his home until a couple of years before his death. A halt in portrait commissions in France allowed him to return to subject painting with Florinda, a joyous celebration of female beauty inspired by a Spanish legend. In the same year his marriage proposal was rejected, Winterhalter remained a bachelor committed to his work. After the accession of Napoleon III, his popularity grew. From on, under the Second Empire, Winterhalter became the chief portraitist of the imperial family and court of France; the beautiful French Empress Eugénie became a favorite sitter, she treated him generously. In 1855 Winterhalter painted his masterpiece: The Empress Eugénie Surrounded by her Ladies in Waiting, he set the French Empress in a pastoral setting gathering flowers in a harmonious circle with her ladies in waiting.
The painting was acclaimed, exhibited in the universal exposition in 1855. It remains Winterhalter's most famous work. In 1852, he went to Spain to paint Queen Isabella II with
An observatory is a location used for observing terrestrial or celestial events. Astronomy, climatology/meteorology, geophysical and volcanology are examples of disciplines for which observatories have been constructed. Observatories were as simple as containing an astronomical sextant or Stonehenge. Astronomical observatories are divided into four categories: space-based, ground-based, underground-based. Ground-based observatories, located on the surface of Earth, are used to make observations in the radio and visible light portions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Most optical telescopes are housed within a dome or similar structure, to protect the delicate instruments from the elements. Telescope domes have a slit or other opening in the roof that can be opened during observing, closed when the telescope is not in use. In most cases, the entire upper portion of the telescope dome can be rotated to allow the instrument to observe different sections of the night sky. Radio telescopes do not have domes.
For optical telescopes, most ground-based observatories are located far from major centers of population, to avoid the effects of light pollution. The ideal locations for modern observatories are sites that have dark skies, a large percentage of clear nights per year, dry air, are at high elevations. At high elevations, the Earth's atmosphere is thinner, thereby minimizing the effects of atmospheric turbulence and resulting in better astronomical "seeing". Sites that meet the above criteria for modern observatories include the southwestern United States, Canary Islands, the Andes, high mountains in Mexico such as Sierra Negra. A newly emerging site which should be added to this list is Mount Gargash. With an elevation of 3600 m above sea level, it is the home to the Iranian National Observatory and its 3.4m INO340 telescope. Major optical observatories include Mauna Kea Observatory and Kitt Peak National Observatory in the US, Roque de los Muchachos Observatory and Calar Alto Observatory in Spain, Paranal Observatory in Chile.
Specific research study performed in 2009 shows that the best possible location for ground-based observatory on Earth is Ridge A — a place in the central part of Eastern Antarctica. This location provides the least atmospheric disturbances and best visibility. Beginning in 1930s, radio telescopes have been built for use in the field of radio astronomy to observe the Universe in the radio portion of the electromagnetic spectrum; such an instrument, or collection of instruments, with supporting facilities such as control centres, visitor housing, data reduction centers, and/or maintenance facilities are called radio observatories. Radio observatories are located far from major population centers to avoid electromagnetic interference from radio, TV, other EMI emitting devices, but unlike optical observatories, radio observatories can be placed in valleys for further EMI shielding; some of the world's major radio observatories include the Socorro, in New Mexico, United States, Jodrell Bank in the UK, Arecibo in Puerto Rico, Parkes in New South Wales and Chajnantor in Chile.
Since the mid-20th century, a number of astronomical observatories have been constructed at high altitudes, above 4,000–5,000 m. The largest and most notable of these is the Mauna Kea Observatory, located near the summit of a 4,205 m volcano in Hawaiʻi; the Chacaltaya Astrophysical Observatory in Bolivia, at 5,230 m, was the world's highest permanent astronomical observatory from the time of its construction during the 1940s until 2009. It has now been surpassed by the new University of Tokyo Atacama Observatory, an optical-infrared telescope on a remote 5,640 m mountaintop in the Atacama Desert of Chile; the oldest proto-observatories, in the sense of a private observation post, Wurdi Youang, Australia Zorats Karer, Armenia Loughcrew, Ireland Newgrange, Ireland Stonehenge, Great Britain Quito Astronomical Observatory, located 12 minutes south of the Equator in Quito, Ecuador. Chankillo, Peru El Caracol, Mexico Abu Simbel, Egypt Kokino, Republic of Macedonia Observatory at Rhodes, Greece Goseck circle, Germany Ujjain, India Arkaim, Russia Cheomseongdae, South Korea Angkor Wat, CambodiaThe oldest true observatories, in the sense of a specialized research institute, include: 825 AD: Al-Shammisiyyah observatory, Iraq 869: Mahodayapuram Observatory, India 1259: Maragheh observatory, Iran 1276: Gaocheng Astronomical Observatory, China 1420: Ulugh Beg Observatory, Uzbekistan 1442: Beijing Ancient Observatory, China 1577: Constantinople Observatory of Taqi ad-Din, Turkey 1580: Uraniborg, Denmark 1581: Stjerneborg, Denmark 1642: Panzano Observatory, Italy 1642: Round Tower, Denmark 1633: Leiden Observatory, Netherlands 1667: Paris Observatory, France 1675: Royal Greenwich Observatory, England 1695: Sukharev Tower, Russia 1711: Berlin Observatory, Germany 1724: Jantar Mantar, India 1753: Stockholm Observatory, Sweden 1753: Vilnius University Observatory, Lithuania 1753: Navy Royal Institute and Observatory, Spain 1759: Trieste Observatory, Italy 1757: Macfarlane Observatory, Scotland 1759: Turin Observatory, Italy 1764: Brera Astronomical Observatory, Italy 1765: Mohr Observatory, Indonesia 1774: Vatican Observatory, Vatican 1785: Dunsink Observatory, Ireland 1786: Madras Observatory, India 1789: Armagh Observatory, Northern Ireland 1790: Real Observatorio de Madrid, Spain, 1803: National Astronomical Observatory, Bogotá, Colombia.
1811: Tartu Old Observatory, Estonia 1812: Astronomical Observatory of Capodimonte, Italy 1830/1842: Depot of Charts & Instruments
The Aztecs were a Mesoamerican culture that flourished in central Mexico in the post-classic period from 1300 to 1521. The Aztec peoples included different ethnic groups of central Mexico those groups who spoke the Nahuatl language and who dominated large parts of Mesoamerica from the 14th to the 16th centuries. Aztec culture was organized into city-states, some of which joined to form alliances, political confederations, or empires; the Aztec empire was a confederation of three city-states established in 1427, city-state of the Mexica or Tenochca. Although the term Aztecs is narrowly restricted to the Mexica of Tenochtitlan, it is broadly used to refer to Nahua polities or peoples of central Mexico in the prehispanic era, as well as the Spanish colonial era; the definitions of Aztec and Aztecs have long been the topic of scholarly discussion since German scientist Alexander von Humboldt established its common usage in the early nineteenth century. Most ethnic groups of central Mexico in the post-classic period shared basic cultural traits of Mesoamerica, so many of the traits that characterize Aztec culture cannot be said to be exclusive to the Aztecs.
For the same reason, the notion of "Aztec civilization" is best understood as a particular horizon of a general Mesoamerican civilization. The culture of central Mexico includes maize cultivation, the social division between nobility and commoners, a pantheon, the calendric system of a xiuhpohualli of 365 days intercalated with a tonalpohualli of 260 days. Particular to the Mexica of Tenochtitlan was the patron God Huitzilopochtli, twin pyramids, the ceramic ware known as Aztec I to IV. From the 13th century, the Valley of Mexico was the heart of dense population and the rise of city-states; the Mexica were late-comers to the Valley of Mexico, founded the city-state of Tenochtitlan on unpromising islets in Lake Texcoco becoming the dominant power of the Aztec Triple Alliance or Aztec Empire. It was a tributary empire that expanded its political hegemony far beyond the Valley of Mexico, conquering other city states throughout Mesoamerica in the late post-classic period, it originated in 1427 as an alliance between the city-states Tenochtitlan and Tlacopan.
Soon Texcoco and Tlacopan were relegated to junior partnership in the alliance, with Tenochtitlan the dominant power. The empire extended its reach by a combination of trade and military conquest, it was never a true territorial empire controlling a territory by large military garrisons in conquered provinces, but rather dominated its client city-states by installing friendly rulers in conquered territories, by constructing marriage alliances between the ruling dynasties, by extending an imperial ideology to its client city-states. Client city-states paid tribute to the Aztec emperor, the Huey Tlatoani, in an economic strategy limiting communication and trade between outlying polities, making them dependent on the imperial center for the acquisition of luxury goods; the political clout of the empire reached far south into Mesoamerica conquering polities as far south as Chiapas and Guatemala and spanning Mesoamerica from the Pacific to the Atlantic oceans. The empire reached its maximal extent in 1519, just prior to the arrival of a small group of Spanish conquistadors led by Hernán Cortés.
Cortés allied with city-states opposed to the Mexica the Nahuatl-speaking Tlaxcalteca as well as other central Mexican polities, including Texcoco, its former ally in the Triple Alliance. After the fall of Tenochtitlan on August 13, 1521 and the capture of the emperor Cuauhtemoc, the Spanish founded Mexico City on the ruins of Tenochtitlan. From there they proceeded with the process of conquest and incorporation of Mesoamerican peoples into the Spanish Empire. With the destruction of the superstructure of the Aztec Empire in 1521, the Spanish utilized the city-states on which the Aztec Empire had been built, to rule the indigenous populations via their local nobles; those nobles pledged loyalty to the Spanish crown and converted, at least nominally, to Christianity, in return were recognized as nobles by the Spanish crown. Nobles acted as intermediaries to convey tribute and mobilize labor for their new overlords, facilitating the establishment of Spanish colonial rule. Aztec culture and history is known through archaeological evidence found in excavations such as that of the renowned Templo Mayor in Mexico City.
Important for knowledge of post-conquest Nahuas was the training of indigenous scribes to write alphabetic texts in Nahuatl for local purposes under Spanish colonial rule. At its height, Aztec culture had rich and complex mythological and religious traditions, as well as achieving remarkable architectural and artistic accomplishments; the Nahuatl words and mean "people from Aztlan," a mythical place of origin for several ethnic groups in central Mexico. The term was not used as an endonym by Aztecs themselves, but it is
The Niños Héroes known as the Heroic Cadets or Boy Soldiers, were six Mexican teenage military cadets. These cadets died defending Mexico City's Chapultepec Castle from invading U. S. forces during the Mexican -- American War. According to legend, in an act of bravery, Juan Escutia wrapped the Mexican flag around his body and jumped from the top of the castle in order to keep it from falling into the hands of the Americans; the Niños Héroes are a key part of Mexico's patriotic folklore, commemorated by a national holiday on September 13. However, several modern Mexican historians claim. Chapultepec Castle served as the Mexican Army's military academy, it was defended by Mexican troops under the command of Nicolás Bravo and General José Mariano Monterde, including cadets from the academy. The number of cadets present has been variously given, from 47 to a few hundred; the outnumbered defenders battled General Winfield Scott's troops for about two hours before General Bravo ordered retreat, but the six cadets refused to fall back and fought to the death.
Despite the castle's position: 200 feet above ground level. Legend has it that the last of the six, Juan Escutia, leapt from Chapultepec Castle wrapped in the Mexican flag to prevent the flag from being taken by the enemy. According to the account of an unidentified US officer, "about a hundred" cadets between the ages of 10 and 19 were among the "crowds" of prisoners taken after the Castle's capture. Juan de la Barrera was born in 1828 in Mexico City, the son of Ignacio Mario de la Barrera, an army general, Juana Inzárruaga, he enlisted at the age of 12 and was admitted to the Academy on 18 November 1843. During the attack on Chapultepec he was a lieutenant in the military engineers and died defending a gun battery at the entrance to the park. Aged 19, he was the oldest of the six, was part of the school faculty as a volunteer teacher in engineering. Juan Escutia was born between 1832 in Tepic, now the capital of the state of Nayarit. Records show he was admitted to the Academy as a cadet on 8 September 1847—five days before the fateful battle—but his other papers were lost during the assault.
He is portrayed as a second lieutenant in an artillery company. He is the cadet who wrapped himself up in the Mexican flag and jumped from the roof to keep it from falling into enemy hands, his body was found alongside that of Francisco Márquez. Francisco Márquez was born in 1834 in Jalisco. Following the death of his father, his mother, Micaela Paniagua, remarried Francisco Ortiz, a cavalry captain, he applied to the Academy on 14 January 1847 and, at the time of the battle, belonged to the first company of cadets. A note included in his personnel record says his body was found on the east flank of the hill, alongside that of Juan Escutia. At 13 years old, he was the youngest of the six heroes. Agustín Melgar was born between 1832 in Chihuahua, Chihuahua, he was the son of Esteban Melgar, a lieutenant colonel in the army, María de la Luz Sevilla, both of whom died while he was still young, leaving him the ward of his older sister. He applied to the Academy on 4 November 1846. A note in his personnel record explains that after finding himself alone, he tried to stop the enemy on the north side of the castle.
It explains he shot and killed one and took refuge behind mattresses in one of the rooms. Grievously wounded he was placed on a table and found dead beside it on 15 September, after the castle fell. Fernando Montes de Oca was born between 1828 and 1832 in Azcapotzalco a town just to the north of Mexico City and now one of the boroughs of the Federal District, his parents were Josefa Rodríguez. He had applied to the Academy on 24 January 1847, was one of the cadets who remained in the castle, his personnel record reads: "Died for his country on 13 September 1847." Vicente Suárez was born in 1833 in Puebla, the son of Miguel Suárez, a cavalry officer, María de la Luz Ortega. He applied for admission to the Academy on 21 October 1845, during his stay was an officer cadet. A note in his record reads: "Killed defending his country at his sentry post on 13 September 1847, he ordered the attackers to stop. He shot one and stabbed another in the stomach with his bayonet, was killed at his post in hand-to-hand combat.
He was killed for his bravery, because his youthfulness made the attackers hesitate, until he attacked them." An obelisk was erected in 1881 to commemorate the Battle of Chapultepec. Interest in the battle increased in the hundred-year anniversary. On March 5 of that year, U. S. President Harry S. Truman placed a wreath at the monument and stood for a few moments of silent reverence. Asked by American reporters why he had gone to the monument, Truman said, "Brave men don't belong to any one country. I respect bravery wherever I see it."The same year, a mass grave was found on the southern hillside of Chapultepec Hill. Six bodies were identified as belonging to the six deceased cadets of 1847; the bodies were exhumed and placed in urns on September 13 and a plaque was placed at the site. The authenticity of the remains is in dispute, since there appears to have been no identification based on forensic science or anthropology. On September 27, 1952, after many public ceremonies, a monument was inaugurated in the Plaza de la Constitución with an honor guard from the several military academies of the Americas.
The six cadets are honored by an imposing monument made of Carrara marble by architect Enrique Aragón and sculptor Ernest
Europe is a continent located in the Northern Hemisphere and in the Eastern Hemisphere. It is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west and the Mediterranean Sea to the south, it comprises the westernmost part of Eurasia. Since around 1850, Europe is most considered to be separated from Asia by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas and the waterways of the Turkish Straits. Although the term "continent" implies physical geography, the land border is somewhat arbitrary and has been redefined several times since its first conception in classical antiquity; the division of Eurasia into two continents reflects East-West cultural and ethnic differences which vary on a spectrum rather than with a sharp dividing line. The geographic border does not follow political boundaries, with Turkey and Kazakhstan being transcontinental countries. A strict application of the Caucasus Mountains boundary places two comparatively small countries and Georgia, in both continents.
Europe covers 2 % of the Earth's surface. Politically, Europe is divided into about fifty sovereign states of which the Russian Federation is the largest and most populous, spanning 39% of the continent and comprising 15% of its population. Europe had a total population of about 741 million as of 2016; the European climate is affected by warm Atlantic currents that temper winters and summers on much of the continent at latitudes along which the climate in Asia and North America is severe. Further from the sea, seasonal differences are more noticeable than close to the coast. Europe, in particular ancient Greece, was the birthplace of Western civilization; the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 AD and the subsequent Migration Period marked the end of ancient history and the beginning of the Middle Ages. Renaissance humanism, exploration and science led to the modern era. Since the Age of Discovery started by Portugal and Spain, Europe played a predominant role in global affairs. Between the 16th and 20th centuries, European powers controlled at various times the Americas all of Africa and Oceania and the majority of Asia.
The Age of Enlightenment, the subsequent French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars shaped the continent culturally and economically from the end of the 17th century until the first half of the 19th century. The Industrial Revolution, which began in Great Britain at the end of the 18th century, gave rise to radical economic and social change in Western Europe and the wider world. Both world wars took place for the most part in Europe, contributing to a decline in Western European dominance in world affairs by the mid-20th century as the Soviet Union and the United States took prominence. During the Cold War, Europe was divided along the Iron Curtain between NATO in the West and the Warsaw Pact in the East, until the revolutions of 1989 and fall of the Berlin Wall. In 1949 the Council of Europe was founded, following a speech by Sir Winston Churchill, with the idea of unifying Europe to achieve common goals, it includes all European states except for Belarus and Vatican City. Further European integration by some states led to the formation of the European Union, a separate political entity that lies between a confederation and a federation.
The EU originated in Western Europe but has been expanding eastward since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. The currency of most countries of the European Union, the euro, is the most used among Europeans. In classical Greek mythology, Europa was a Phoenician princess; the word Europe is derived from her name. The name contains the elements εὐρύς, "wide, broad" and ὤψ "eye, countenance", hence their composite Eurṓpē would mean "wide-gazing" or "broad of aspect". Broad has been an epithet of Earth herself in the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European religion and the poetry devoted to it. There have been attempts to connect Eurṓpē to a Semitic term for "west", this being either Akkadian erebu meaning "to go down, set" or Phoenician'ereb "evening, west", at the origin of Arabic Maghreb and Hebrew ma'arav. Michael A. Barry, professor in Princeton University's Near Eastern Studies Department, finds the mention of the word Ereb on an Assyrian stele with the meaning of "night, sunset", in opposition to Asu " sunrise", i.e. Asia.
The same naming motive according to "cartographic convention" appears in Greek Ἀνατολή. Martin Litchfield West stated that "phonologically, the match between Europa's name and any form of the Semitic word is poor." Next to these hypotheses there is a Proto-Indo-European root *h1regʷos, meaning "darkness", which produced Greek Erebus. Most major world languages use words derived from Europa to refer to the continent. Chinese, for example, uses the word Ōuzhōu. In some Turkic languages the Persian name Frangistan is used casually in referring to much of Europe, besides official names such as Avrupa or Evropa; the prevalent definition of Europe as a geographical term has been in use since the mid-19th century. Europe is taken to be bounded by large bodies of water
Miguel Gregorio de la Luz Atenógenes Miramón y Tarelo, known as Miguel Miramón, was a Mexican conservative general and politician. He served as anti-constitutional interim conservative President of Mexico in opposition to the constitutional president, Benito Juárez of the Liberal Party, he was the first not born during Spanish colonial rule. Miramón was born in Mexico City into a family of partial French heritage. At the age of 15, he was taken prisoner during the United States assault on Chapultepec Castle in the Mexican–American War. In his late teens and early twenties he rose through the army ranks rather becoming famous for his personal charisma, his competence as a soldier and his guerrilla tactics, he was a staunch conservative, a supporter of monarchy and religious privileges for the Catholic Church, which supported his military efforts against the constitutional forces with loans. During the War of Reform, he fought in the central lowlands on the side of a reactionary military junta, which had staged a coup d'état in defiance of the Constitution of 1857.
Several presidents were appointed by the junta as factions within the junta vied for power. Miramón's faction prevailed, on 2 February 1860, not yet 30 years old, he assumed the presidency. However, neither he nor any of the other presidents of the junta was recognized by the constitutional forces led by President Benito Juárez, they were not recognized by the United States, which appointed an ambassador to Juárez's government instead. On 11 April 1859, Miramón earned the enmity of much of the populace for ordering the execution of not only captured officers of the constitutional forces but the doctors who had treated their wounds and numerous civilians deemed too sympathetic to the constitutional armies, which had just suffered a defeat in attempting to retake the capital from the junta now headed by Miramón; as a result of this massacre, General Degollado of the constitutional army ordered officers of the anticonstitutional armies shot upon capture. Between 12 August and 15 August 1860, he left the presidency to José Ignacio Pavón.
According to some sources, he used the Mexico City police to raid the residence of the British consul and steal 600,000 pesos to finance a conservative levy. He maintained hostilities against the liberals until he was savagely defeated by the troops of Gen. Jesús González Ortega in San Juan del Río, Querétaro, on 22 December. Two days he resigned and fled to Europe. While in France, he never took part in the negotiations between the Mexican monarchists, Napoleon III and the Archduke Maximilian of Austria; when he returned to Mexico, the archduke, now crowned as Emperor Maximilian of Mexico, appointed him as Great Marshal of the Imperial Army and sent him to Berlin to study military tactics. He organized the imperial defenses against the republicans. On 19 February 1867, he arrived at Santiago de Querétaro to repel the siege against the emperor, he sent General Tomás Mejía to take charge of the cavalry. Three months the emperor decided to capitulate against the advice of Miramón, wounded in action.
On 19 June, all three were shot for treason on the order of President Benito Juárez, the republican leader. The execution took place in the outskirts of Querétaro. List of heads of state of Mexico El Balero: Miguel Miramón Guide to the Miramón family papers at The Bancroft Library
Ludwig II of Bavaria
Ludwig II was King of Bavaria from 1864 until his death in 1886. He is sometimes called the Swan der Märchenkönig, he held the titles of Count Palatine of the Rhine, Duke of Bavaria, Duke of Franconia, Duke in Swabia. He succeeded to the throne aged 18. Two years Bavaria and Austria fought a war against Prussia, which they lost. However, in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 Bavaria sided with Prussia against France, after the Prussian victory it became part of the new German Empire led by Prussia. Though Bavaria retained a degree of autonomy on some matters within the new German Reich, Ludwig withdrew from day-to-day affairs of state in favour of extravagant artistic and architectural projects, he commissioned the construction of two lavish palaces and Neuschwanstein Castle, he was a devoted patron of the composer Richard Wagner. Ludwig spent all his royal revenues on these projects, borrowed extensively, defied all attempts by his ministers to restrain him; this extravagance was used against him to declare him insane, an accusation which has since come under scrutiny.
Today, his architectural and artistic legacy includes many of Bavaria's most important tourist attractions. Born at Nymphenburg Palace, he was the elder son of Maximilian II of Bavaria of the House of Wittelsbach, his wife Princess Marie of Prussia, his parents intended to name him Otto, but his grandfather, Ludwig I of Bavaria, insisted that his grandson be named after him, since their common birthday, 25 August, is the feast day of Saint Louis IX of France, patron saint of Bavaria. His younger brother, born three years was named Otto. Like many young heirs in an age when kings governed most of Europe, Ludwig was continually reminded of his royal status. King Maximilian wanted to instruct both of his sons in the burdens of royal duty from an early age. Ludwig was both indulged and controlled by his tutors and subjected to a strict regimen of study and exercise. There are some who point to these stresses of growing up in a royal family as the causes for much of his odd behavior as an adult. Ludwig was not close to either of his parents.
King Maximilian's advisers had suggested that on his daily walks he might like, at times, to be accompanied by his future successor. The King replied, "But what am I to say to him? After all, my son takes no interest in what other people tell him." Ludwig would refer to his mother as "my predecessor's consort". He was far closer to his grandfather, the deposed and notorious King Ludwig I, who came from a family of eccentrics. Ludwig's childhood years did have happy moments, he lived for much of the time at Castle Hohenschwangau, a fantasy castle his father had built near the Alpsee near Füssen. It was decorated in the Gothic Revival style with many frescoes depicting heroic German sagas; the family visited Lake Starnberg. As an adolescent, Ludwig became close friends with his aide de camp, Prince Paul, a member of Bavaria's wealthy Thurn und Taxis family; the two young men rode together, read poetry aloud, staged scenes from the Romantic operas of Richard Wagner. The friendship ended when Paul became engaged in 1866.
During his youth Ludwig initiated a lifelong friendship with his cousin, Duchess Elisabeth in Bavaria Empress of Austria. Crown Prince Ludwig was in his 19th year when his father died after a three-day illness, he ascended the Bavarian throne. Although he was not prepared for high office, his youth and brooding good looks made him popular in Bavaria and elsewhere, he retained his ministers. His real interests were in art and architecture. One of the first acts of his reign, a few months after his accession, was to summon Wagner to his court. In 1864, he laid the foundation stone of a new Court Theatre, now the Staatstheater am Gärtnerplatz. Ludwig was notably eccentric in ways, he disliked large public functions and avoided formal social events whenever possible, preferring a life of seclusion that he pursued with various creative projects. He last inspected a military parade on 22 August 1875 and last gave a Court banquet on 10 February 1876, his mother had foreseen difficulties for Ludwig when she recorded her concern for her introverted and creative son who spent much time day-dreaming.
These idiosyncrasies, combined with the fact that Ludwig avoided Munich and participating in the government there at all costs, caused considerable tension with the king's government ministers, but did not cost him popularity among the citizens of Bavaria. The king enjoyed traveling in the Bavarian countryside and chatting with farmers and labourers he met along the way, he delighted in rewarding those who were hospitable to him during his travels with lavish gifts. He is still remembered in Bavaria as "Unser Kini". Relations with Prussia took center stage from 1866. In the Austro-Prussian War, which began in July, Ludwig supported Austria against Prussia. Austria and Bavaria were defeated, Bavaria was forced to sign a mutual defense treaty with Prussia; when the Franco-Prussian War broke out in 1870, Bavaria was required to fight alongside Prussia. After the Prussian victory over France, Bismarck moved to complete the Unification of Germany. In November 1870, Bavaria joined the North German Confederation and thus lost its status as an independent kingdom.
However, the Bavarian delegation under Minister-President Count Otto v