The British Isles are a group of islands in the North Atlantic off the north-western coast of continental Europe that consist of the islands of Great Britain, the Isle of Man, the Hebrides and over six thousand smaller isles. They have a total area of about 315,159 km2 and a combined population of 72 million, include two sovereign states, the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; the islands of Alderney, Jersey and Sark, their neighbouring smaller islands, are sometimes taken to be part of the British Isles though, as islands off the coast of France, they do not form part of the archipelago. The oldest rocks in the group are in the north west of Scotland and North Wales and are 2.7 billion years old. During the Silurian period, the north-western regions collided with the south-east, part of a separate continental landmass; the topography of the islands is modest in scale by global standards. Ben Nevis rises to an elevation of only 1,345 metres, Lough Neagh, notably larger than other lakes in the island group, covers 390 square kilometres.
The climate is temperate marine, with warm summers. The North Atlantic drift brings significant moisture and raises temperatures 11 °C above the global average for the latitude; this led to a landscape, long dominated by temperate rainforest, although human activity has since cleared the vast majority of forest cover. The region was re-inhabited after the last glacial period of Quaternary glaciation, by 12,000 BC, when Great Britain was still part of a peninsula of the European continent. Ireland, which became an island by 12,000 BC, was not inhabited until after 8000 BC. Great Britain became an island by 5600 BC. Hiberni and Britons tribes, all speaking Insular Celtic, inhabited the islands at the beginning of the 1st millennium AD. Much of Brittonic-occupied Britain was conquered by the Roman Empire from AD 43; the first Anglo-Saxons arrived as Roman power waned in the 5th century, dominated the bulk of what is now England. Viking invasions began in the 9th century, followed by more permanent settlements and political change in England.
The Norman conquest of England in 1066 and the Angevin partial conquest of Ireland from 1169 led to the imposition of a new Norman ruling elite across much of Britain and parts of Ireland. By the Late Middle Ages, Great Britain was separated into the Kingdoms of England and Kingdom of Scotland, while control in Ireland fluxed between Gaelic kingdoms, Hiberno-Norman lords and the English-dominated Lordship of Ireland, soon restricted only to The Pale; the 1603 Union of the Crowns, Acts of Union 1707 and Acts of Union 1800 attempted to consolidate Britain and Ireland into a single political unit, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, with the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands remaining as Crown Dependencies. The expansion of the British Empire and migrations following the Irish Famine and Highland Clearances resulted in the dispersal of some of the islands' population and culture throughout the world, a rapid depopulation of Ireland in the second half of the 19th century. Most of Ireland seceded from the United Kingdom after the Irish War of Independence and the subsequent Anglo-Irish Treaty, with six counties remaining in the UK as Northern Ireland.
The term "British Isles" is controversial in Ireland, where there are nationalist objections to its usage. The Government of Ireland does not recognise the term, its embassy in London discourages its use. Britain and Ireland is used as an alternative description, Atlantic Archipelago has seen limited use in academia; the earliest known references to the islands as a group appeared in the writings of sea-farers from the ancient Greek colony of Massalia. The original records have been lost. In the 1st century BC, Diodorus Siculus has Prettanikē nēsos, "the British Island", Prettanoi, "the Britons". Strabo used Βρεττανική, Marcian of Heraclea, in his Periplus maris exteri, used αἱ Πρεττανικαί νῆσοι to refer to the islands. Historians today, though not in absolute agreement agree that these Greek and Latin names were drawn from native Celtic-language names for the archipelago. Along these lines, the inhabitants of the islands were called the Πρεττανοί; the shift from the "P" of Pretannia to the "B" of Britannia by the Romans occurred during the time of Julius Caesar.
The Greco-Egyptian scientist Claudius Ptolemy referred to the larger island as great Britain and to Ireland as little Britain in his work Almagest. In his work, Geography, he gave these islands the names Alwion and Mona, suggesting these may have been names of the individual islands not known to him at the time of writing Almagest; the name Albion appears to have fallen out of use sometime after the Roman conquest of Great Britain, after which Britain became the more commonplace name for the island called Great Britain. The earliest known use of the phrase Brytish Iles in the English language is dated 1577 in a work by John Dee. Today, this name is seen by some as carrying imperialist overtones although it is still used. Other names used to describe the islands include the Anglo-Celtic Isles, Atlantic archipelago, British-Irish Isles and Ireland, UK
Australia the Commonwealth of Australia, is a sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania and numerous smaller islands. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area; the neighbouring countries are Papua New Guinea and East Timor to the north. The population of 25 million is urbanised and concentrated on the eastern seaboard. Australia's capital is Canberra, its largest city is Sydney; the country's other major metropolitan areas are Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Australia was inhabited by indigenous Australians for about 60,000 years before the first British settlement in the late 18th century, it is documented. After the European exploration of the continent by Dutch explorers in 1606, who named it New Holland, Australia's eastern half was claimed by Great Britain in 1770 and settled through penal transportation to the colony of New South Wales from 26 January 1788, a date which became Australia's national day; the population grew in subsequent decades, by the 1850s most of the continent had been explored and an additional five self-governing crown colonies established.
On 1 January 1901, the six colonies federated. Australia has since maintained a stable liberal democratic political system that functions as a federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy, comprising six states and ten territories. Being the oldest and driest inhabited continent, with the least fertile soils, Australia has a landmass of 7,617,930 square kilometres. A megadiverse country, its size gives it a wide variety of landscapes, with deserts in the centre, tropical rainforests in the north-east and mountain ranges in the south-east. A gold rush began in Australia in the early 1850s, its population density, 2.8 inhabitants per square kilometre, remains among the lowest in the world. Australia generates its income from various sources including mining-related exports, telecommunications and manufacturing. Indigenous Australian rock art is the oldest and richest in the world, dating as far back as 60,000 years and spread across hundreds of thousands of sites. Australia is a developed country, with the world's 14th-largest economy.
It has a high-income economy, with the world's tenth-highest per capita income. It is a regional power, has the world's 13th-highest military expenditure. Australia has the world's ninth-largest immigrant population, with immigrants accounting for 26% of the population. Having the third-highest human development index and the eighth-highest ranked democracy globally, the country ranks in quality of life, education, economic freedom, civil liberties and political rights, with all its major cities faring well in global comparative livability surveys. Australia is a member of the United Nations, G20, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, World Trade Organization, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, Pacific Islands Forum and the ASEAN Plus Six mechanism; the name Australia is derived from the Latin Terra Australis, a name used for a hypothetical continent in the Southern Hemisphere since ancient times. When Europeans first began visiting and mapping Australia in the 17th century, the name Terra Australis was applied to the new territories.
Until the early 19th century, Australia was best known as "New Holland", a name first applied by the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1644 and subsequently anglicised. Terra Australis still saw occasional usage, such as in scientific texts; the name Australia was popularised by the explorer Matthew Flinders, who said it was "more agreeable to the ear, an assimilation to the names of the other great portions of the earth". The first time that Australia appears to have been used was in April 1817, when Governor Lachlan Macquarie acknowledged the receipt of Flinders' charts of Australia from Lord Bathurst. In December 1817, Macquarie recommended to the Colonial Office. In 1824, the Admiralty agreed that the continent should be known by that name; the first official published use of the new name came with the publication in 1830 of The Australia Directory by the Hydrographic Office. Colloquial names for Australia include "Oz" and "the Land Down Under". Other epithets include "the Great Southern Land", "the Lucky Country", "the Sunburnt Country", "the Wide Brown Land".
The latter two both derive from Dorothea Mackellar's 1908 poem "My Country". Human habitation of the Australian continent is estimated to have begun around 65,000 to 70,000 years ago, with the migration of people by land bridges and short sea-crossings from what is now Southeast Asia; these first inhabitants were the ancestors of modern Indigenous Australians. Aboriginal Australian culture is one of the oldest continual civilisations on earth. At the time of first European contact, most Indigenous Australians were hunter-gatherers with complex economies and societies. Recent archaeological finds suggest. Indigenous Australians have an oral culture with spiritual values based on reverence for the land and a belief in the Dreamtime; the Torres Strait Islanders, ethnically Melanesian, obtained their livelihood from seasonal horticulture and the resources of their reefs and seas. The northern coasts and waters of Australia were visited s
Thessaly is a traditional geographic and modern administrative region of Greece, comprising most of the ancient region of the same name. Before the Greek Dark Ages, Thessaly was known as Aeolia, appears thus in Homer's Odyssey. Thessaly became part of the modern Greek state in 1881, after four and a half centuries of Ottoman rule. Since 1987 it has formed one of the country's 13 regions and is further sub-divided into 5 regional units and 25 municipalities; the capital of the region is Larissa. Thessaly lies in northern Greece and borders the regions of Macedonia on the north, Epirus on the west, Central Greece on the south and the Aegean Sea on the east; the Thessaly region includes the Sporades islands. In Homer's epic, the Odyssey, the hero Odysseus visited the kingdom of Aeolus, the old name for Thessaly; the Plain of Thessaly, which lies between Mount Oeta/Othrys and Mount Olympus, was the site of the battle between the Titans and the Olympians. According to legend and the Argonauts launched their search for the Golden Fleece from the Magnesia Peninsula.
Thessaly was home to extensive Neolithic and Chalcolithic cultures around 6000–2500 BC. Mycenaean settlements have been discovered, for example at the sites of Iolcos and Sesklo. In Archaic and Classical times, the lowlands of Thessaly became the home of baronial families, such as the Aleuadae of Larissa or the Scopads of Crannon. In the summer of 480 BC, the Persians invaded Thessaly; the Greek army that guarded the Vale of Tempe evacuated the road before the enemy arrived. Not much Thessaly surrendered to the Persians; the Thessalian family of Aleuadae joined the Persians subsequently. In the 4th century BC, after the Greco-Persian Wars had long ended, Jason of Pherae transformed the region into a significant military power, recalling the glory of Early Archaic times. Shortly after, Philip II of Macedon was appointed Archon of Thessaly, Thessaly was thereafter associated with the Macedonian Kingdom for the next centuries. Thessaly became part of the Roman Empire as part of the province of Macedonia.
Thessaly remained part of the East Roman "Byzantine" Empire after the collapse of Roman power in the west, subsequently suffered many invasions, such as by the Slavic tribe of the Belegezites in the 7th century AD. The Avars had arrived in Europe in the late 550s, they asserted their authority over many Slavs. Many Slavs were galvanized by the Avars. In the 7th century the Avar-Slav alliance began to raid the Byzantine Empire, laying siege to Thessalonica and the imperial capital Constantinople itself. By the 8th century, Slavs had occupied most of the Balkans from Austria to the Peloponnese, from the Adriatic to the Black seas, with the exception of the coastal areas and certain mountainous regions of the Greek peninsula. Relations between the Slavs and Greeks were peaceful apart from the initial settlement and intermittent uprisings. Being agriculturalists, the Slavs traded with the Greeks inside towns, it is that the re-Hellenization had begun by way of this contact. This process would be completed by a newly reinvigorated Byzantine Empire.
With the abatement of Arab-Byzantine Wars, the Byzantine Empire began to consolidate its power in those areas of mainland Greece occupied by Proto-Slavic tribes. Following the campaigns of the Byzantine general Staurakios in 782–783, the Byzantine Empire recovered Thessaly, taking many Slavs as prisoners. Apart from military expeditions against Slavs, the re-Hellenization process begun under Nicephorus I involved transfer of peoples. Many Slavs were moved to other parts of the empire such as Anatolia and made to serve in the military. In return, many Greeks from Sicily and Asia Minor were brought to the interior of Greece, to increase the number of defenders at the Emperor's disposal and dilute the concentration of Slavs. In 977 Byzantine Thessaly was raided by the Bulgarian Empire. In 1066 dissatisfaction with the taxation policy led the Aromanian and Bulgarian population of Thessaly to revolt against the Byzantine Empire under the leadership of a local lord, Nikoulitzas Delphinas; the revolt, which began in Larissa, soon expanded to Trikala and northwards to the Byzantine-Bulgarian border.
In 1199–1201 another unsuccessful revolt was led by Manuel Kamytzes, son-in-law of Byzantine emperor Alexios III Angelos, with the support of Dobromir Chrysos, the autonomous ruler of Prosek. Kamytzes managed to establish a short-lived principality in northern Thessaly, before he was overcome by an imperial expedition. Following the siege of Constantinople and the dissolution of the Byzantine Empire by the Fourth Crusade in April 1204, Thessaly passed to Boniface of Montferrat's Kingdom of Thessalonica in the wider context of the Frankokratia. In 1212, Michael I Komnenos Doukas, ruler of Epirus, led his troops into Thessaly. Larissa and much of central Thessaly came under Epirote rule, thereby separating Thessalonica from the Crusader principalities in southern Greece. Michael's work was completed by his half-brother and successor, Theodore Komnenos Doukas, who by 1220 completed the recovery of the entire region; the Vlachs of Thessaly first appear in Byzantine sources in the 11th century, in the Strategikon of Kekaumenos and Anna Komnene's Alexiad).
In the 12th century, the Jewish traveller Benjamin of Tudela records the
A tumulus is a mound of earth and stones raised over a grave or graves. Tumuli are known as barrows, burial mounds or kurgans, may be found throughout much of the world. A cairn, a mound of stones built for various purposes, may originally have been a tumulus. Tumuli are categorised according to their external apparent shape. In this respect, a long barrow is a long tumulus constructed on top of several burials, such as passage graves. A round barrow is a round tumulus commonly constructed on top of burials; the internal structure and architecture of both long and round barrows has a broad range, the categorization only refers to the external apparent shape. The method of inhumation may involve a dolmen, a cist, a mortuary enclosure, a mortuary house, or a chamber tomb. Examples of barrows include Duggleby Maeshowe; the word tumulus is Latin for'mound' or'small hill', derived from the Proto-Indo-European root *teuh2- with extended zero grade *tum-,'to bulge, swell' found in tumor, thumb and thousand.
The funeral of Patroclus is described in book 23 of the Iliad. Patroclus is burned on a pyre, his bones are collected into a golden urn in two layers of fat; the barrow is built on the location of the pyre. Achilles sponsors funeral games, consisting of a chariot race, wrestling, running, a duel between two champions to the first blood, discus throwing and spear throwing. Beowulf's body is taken to Hronesness. During cremation, the Geats lament the death of their lord, a widow's lament being mentioned in particular, singing dirges as they circumambulate the barrow. Afterwards, a mound is built on top of a hill, overlooking the sea, filled with treasure. A band of twelve of the best warriors ride around the barrow, singing dirges in praise of their lord. Parallels have been drawn to the account of Attila's burial in Jordanes' Getica. Jordanes tells that as Attila's body was lying in state, the best horsemen of the Huns circled it, as in circus games. An Old Irish Life of Columcille reports that every funeral procession "halted at a mound called Eala, whereupon the corpse was laid, the mourners marched thrice solemnly round the spot."
Archaeologists classify tumuli according to their location and date of construction. Some British types are listed below: Bank barrow Bell barrow Bowl barrow D-shaped barrow – round barrow with a purposely flat edge at one side defined by stone slabs. Disc barrow Fancy barrow – generic term for any Bronze Age barrows more elaborate than a simple hemispherical shape. Long barrow Oval barrow – a Neolithic long barrow consisting of an elliptical, rather than rectangular or trapezoidal mound. Platform barrow – The least common of the recognised types of round barrow, consisting of a flat, wide circular mound that may be surrounded by a ditch, they occur across southern England with a marked concentration in East and West Sussex. Pond barrow – a barrow consisting of a shallow circular depression, surrounded by a bank running around the rim of the depression, from the Bronze Age. Ring barrow – a bank that encircles a number of burials. Round barrow – a circular feature created by the Bronze Age peoples of Britain and the Romans and Saxons.
Divided into subclasses such as saucer and bell barrow—the Six Hills are a rare Roman example. Saucer barrow – a circular Bronze Age barrow that features a low, wide mound surrounded by a ditch that may have an external bank. Square barrow – burial site of Iron Age date, consisting of a small, ditched enclosure surrounding a central burial, which may have been covered by a mound. In 2015, the first long barrow in thousands of years, inspired by those built in the Neolithic Period, was built near All Cannings in England; the project was steward of Stonehenge. The barrow was designed to have a large number of private niches within the stone and earth structure to receive cremation urns; the structure received significant media attention, with national press writing extensively about the revival of the structures, various episodes of filming, for example by BBC Countryfile as it was being built. It was subscribed within eighteen months; this was followed soon after by a new barrow near St Neots. Further plans to revive barrows are at Soulton in Shropshire.
The word kurgan is of Turkic origin, derives from Proto-Turkic *Kur-. In Ukraine and Russia, there are royal kurgans of Varangian chieftains, such as the Black Grave in Ukrainian Chernihiv, Oleg's Grave in Russian Staraya Ladoga, vast, intricate Rurik's Hill near Russian Novgorod. Other important kurgans are found in Ukraine and South Russia and are associated with much more ancient steppe peoples, notably the Scythians and early Indo-Europeans The steppe cultures found in Ukraine and South Russia continue into Central Asia, in particular Kazakhstan. Salweyn in northern Somalia contains a large field of cairns, which stretches for a distance of around 8 km. An excavation of one of these tumuli by Georges Révoil in 1881 uncovered a tomb, beside which were artefacts pointing to an ancient, advanced civilization; the interred objects included pottery shards from Samos, some well-crafted enamels, a mask of Ancient Greek design. Tumuli are one of the most prominent types of prehistoric monuments spread throughout northern and southern Albania.
Some well-known local tumuli are: Kamenica Tumulus Lofkënd Tumulus Pazhok Tumulus More than 50 burial mounds were found in Kupres. Man from Kupres- the skeleton found
Gabon the Gabonese Republic, is a country on the west coast of Central Africa. Located on the equator, Gabon is bordered by Equatorial Guinea to the northwest, Cameroon to the north, the Republic of the Congo on the east and south, the Gulf of Guinea to the west, it has an area of nearly 270,000 square kilometres and its population is estimated at 2 million people. Its capital and largest city is Libreville. Since its independence from France in 1960, the sovereign state of Gabon has had three presidents. In the early 1990s, Gabon introduced a multi-party system and a new democratic constitution that allowed for a more transparent electoral process and reformed many governmental institutions. Abundant petroleum and foreign private investment have helped make Gabon one of the most prosperous countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, with the 7th highest HDI and the fourth highest GDP per capita in the region. GDP grew by more than 6% per year from 2010 to 2012. However, because of inequality in income distribution, a significant proportion of the population remains poor.
Gabon's name originates from gabão, Portuguese for "cloak", the shape of the estuary of the Komo River by Libreville. The earliest inhabitants of the area were Pygmy peoples, they were replaced and absorbed by Bantu tribes as they migrated. In the 15th century, the first Europeans arrived. By the 18th century, a Myeni speaking kingdom known as Orungu formed in Gabon. On February 10, 1722, Bartholomew Roberts, a Welsh pirate known as Black Bart, died at sea off Cape Lopez, he raided ships off the Americas and West Africa from 1719 to 1722. French explorer Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza led his first mission to the Gabon-Congo area in 1875, he founded the town of Franceville, was colonial governor. Several Bantu groups lived in the area, now Gabon when France occupied it in 1885. In 1910, Gabon became one of the four territories of French Equatorial Africa, a federation that survived until 1959. In World War II, the Allies invaded Gabon in order to overthrow the pro-Vichy France colonial administration.
The territories of French Equatorial Africa became independent on August 17, 1960. The first president of Gabon, elected in 1961, was Léon M'ba, with Omar Bongo Ondimba as his vice president. After M'ba's accession to power, the press was suppressed, political demonstrations banned, freedom of expression curtailed, other political parties excluded from power, the Constitution changed along French lines to vest power in the Presidency, a post that M'ba assumed himself. However, when M'ba dissolved the National Assembly in January 1964 to institute one-party rule, an army coup sought to oust him from power and restore parliamentary democracy. French paratroopers flew in within 24 hours to restore M'ba to power. After a few days of fighting, the coup ended and the opposition was imprisoned, despite widespread protests and riots. French soldiers still remain in the Camp de Gaulle on the outskirts of Gabon's capital to this day; when M'Ba died in 1967, Bongo replaced him as president. In March 1968, Bongo declared Gabon a one-party state by dissolving the BDG and establishing a new party—the Parti Democratique Gabonais.
He invited all Gabonese, regardless of previous political affiliation. Bongo sought to forge a single national movement in support of the government's development policies, using the PDG as a tool to submerge the regional and tribal rivalries that had divided Gabonese politics in the past. Bongo was elected President in February 1975. Bongo was November 1986 to 7-year terms. In early 1990 economic discontent and a desire for political liberalization provoked violent demonstrations and strikes by students and workers. In response to grievances by workers, Bongo negotiated with them on a sector-by-sector basis, making significant wage concessions. In addition, he promised to open up the PDG and to organize a national political conference in March–April 1990 to discuss Gabon's future political system; the PDG and 74 political organizations attended the conference. Participants divided into two loose coalitions, the ruling PDG and its allies, the United Front of Opposition Associations and Parties, consisting of the breakaway Morena Fundamental and the Gabonese Progress Party.
The April 1990 conference approved sweeping political reforms, including creation of a national Senate, decentralization of the budgetary process, freedom of assembly and press, cancellation of an exit visa requirement. In an attempt to guide the political system's transformation to multiparty democracy, Bongo resigned as PDG chairman and created a transitional government headed by a new Prime Minister, Casimir Oye-Mba; the Gabonese Social Democratic Grouping, as the resulting government was called, was smaller than the previous government and included representatives from several opposition parties in its cabinet. The RSDG drafted a provisional constitution in May 1990 that provided a basic bill of rights and an independent judiciary but retained strong executive powers for the president. After further review by a constitutional committee and the National Assembly, this document came into force in March 1991. Opposition to the PDG continued after the April 1990 conference, in September 1990, two coup d'état attempts were uncovered and aborted.
Despite anti-government demonstrations after the untimely death of an opposition leader, the first multiparty National Assembly elections in almo
Northumberland is a county in North East England. The northernmost county of England, it borders Cumbria to the west, County Durham and Tyne and Wear to the south and the Scottish Borders to the north. To the east is the North Sea coastline with a 64 miles path; the county town is Alnwick. The county of Northumberland included Newcastle upon Tyne until 1400, when the city became a county of itself. Northumberland expanded in the Tudor period, annexing Berwick-upon-Tweed in 1482, Tynedale in 1495, Tynemouth in 1536, Redesdale around 1542 and Hexhamshire in 1572. Islandshire and Norhamshire were incorporated into Northumberland in 1844. Tynemouth and other settlements in North Tyneside were transferred to Tyne and Wear in 1974 under the Local Government Act 1972. Lying on the Anglo-Scottish border, Northumberland has been the site of a number of battles; the county is noted for its undeveloped landscape of high moorland, now protected as the Northumberland National Park. Northumberland is the least densely populated county in England, with only 62 people per square kilometre.
Northumberland meant'the land of the people living north of the River Humber'. The present county is the core of that former land, has long been a frontier zone between England and Scotland. During Roman occupation of Britain, most of the present county lay north of Hadrian's Wall, it was controlled by Rome only for the brief period of its extension of power north to the Antonine Wall. The Roman road Dere Street crosses the county from Corbridge over high moorland west of the Cheviot Hills into present Scotland to Trimontium; as evidence of its border position through medieval times, Northumberland has more castles than any other county in England, including those at Alnwick, Dunstanburgh and Warkworth. Northumberland has a rich prehistory with many instances of rock art, hillforts such as Yeavering Bell, stone circles such as the Goatstones and Duddo Five Stones. Most of the area was occupied by the Brythonic-Celtic Votadini people, with another large tribe, the Brigantes, to the south; the region of present-day Northumberland formed the core of the Anglian kingdom of Bernicia, which united with Deira to form the kingdom of Northumbria in the 7th century.
The historical boundaries of Northumbria under King Edwin stretched from the Humber in the south to the Forth in the north. After the battle of Nechtansmere its influence north of the Tweed began to decline as the Picts reclaimed the land invaded by the Saxon kingdom. In 1018 its northern part, the region between the Tweed and the Forth, was ceded to the Kingdom of Scotland. Northumberland is called the "cradle of Christianity" in England, because Christianity flourished on Lindisfarne—a tidal island north of Bamburgh called Holy Island—after King Oswald of Northumbria invited monks from Iona to come to convert the English. A monastery at Lindisfarne was the centre of production of the Lindisfarne Gospels, it became the home of St Cuthbert, buried in Durham Cathedral. Bamburgh is the historic capital of Northumberland, the royal castle from before the unification of the Kingdoms of England under the monarchs of the House of Wessex in the 10th century; the Earldom of Northumberland was held by the Scottish royal family by marriage between 1139–1157 and 1215–1217.
Scotland relinquished all claims to the region as part of the Treaty of York. The Earls of Northumberland once wielded significant power in English affairs because, as powerful and militaristic Marcher Lords, they had the task of protecting England from Scottish retaliation for English invasions. Northumberland has a history of revolt and rebellion against the government, as seen in the Rising of the North against Elizabeth I of England; these revolts were led by the Earls of Northumberland, the Percy family. Shakespeare makes one of the Percys, the dashing Harry Hotspur, the hero of his Henry IV, Part 1; the Percys were aided in conflict by other powerful Northern families, such as the Nevilles and the Patchetts. The latter were stripped of all power and titles after the English Civil War of 1642–1651. After the Restoration of 1660, the county was a centre for Roman Catholicism in England, as well as a focus of Jacobite support. Northumberland was long a wild county, where Border Reivers hid from the law.
However, the frequent cross-border skirmishes and accompanying local lawlessness subsided after the Union of the Crowns of Scotland and England under King James I and VI in 1603. Northumberland played a key role in the Industrial Revolution from the 18th century on. Many coal mines operated in Northumberland until the widespread closures in the 1980s. Collieries operated at Ashington, Blyth, Netherton and Pegswood; the region's coalfields fuelled industrial expansion in other areas of Britain, the need to transport the coal from the collieries to the Tyne led to the development of the first railways. Shipbuilding and armaments manufacture were other important industries before the deindustrialisation of the 1980s. Northumberland remains rural, is the least-densely populated county in England. In recent years the county has had considerable growth in tourism. Visitors are attracted both to its historical sites. Northumberland has a diverse physical geography, it is low and flat near the North Sea coast and mountainous toward the northwest.
Rock Drawings in Valcamonica
The stone carvings of Val Camonica are located in the Province of Brescia and constitute the largest collections of prehistoric petroglyphs in the world. The collection was recognized by Unesco in 1979 and was Italy's first recognized World Heritage Site. Unesco has formally recognized more than 140,000 figures and symbols, but new discoveries have increased the number of catalogued incisions to between 200,000 and 300,000; the petroglyphs are spread on all surfaces of the valley, but concentrated in the areas of Darfo Boario Terme, Capo di Ponte, Nadro and Paspardo. Many of the incisions were made over a time period of eight thousand years preceding the Iron Age, while petroglyphs of the last period are attributed to the people of Camunni, mentioned by Latin sources; the petroglyph tradition does not end abruptly. Engravings have been identified from the Roman period, medieval period and are even contemporary, up to the 19th century. Most of the cuts have been made using the "martellina" technique and lesser numbers obtained through graffiti.
The figures are sometimes superimposed without apparent order. Others instead appear to have a logical relationship between them; this approach explains the scheme of images, each of, an ideogram, not the real object, but its "idea". Their function pertains to celebratory rituals: commemorative and propitiatory. Among the most-famous symbols found in Valcamonica is the so-called "Rosa camuna", adopted as the official symbol of the region of Lombardy. In the 1960s, the archaeologist Emmanuel Anati, among the first to systematically study the area, drew up a chronology of rock carvings, it compared the style and types of the symbols to identify possible correlations with the traditional historical periodization, from Prehistory to the Middle Ages. According to Anati's research results, Val Camonica is divided into Proto-Camunian, Camunian I, II, III, IV and Post-Camunian periods; the earliest rock carvings date back to epipaleolithic, several millennia after the retreat of the glacier that covered the Val Camonica.
Those carvings were the work of passing nomadic hunters, following the migrations of their prey. The figures represented in fact depict large animals such as deer and elk, which are the typical prey of that period; the drawings describe animals wounded with spears. This kind of rock art can be typical for hunters-gatherers and associated with blades and microlites industry. Similar representations are present in the town park stone carvings of Luine. During the Neolithic period, agricultural practices spread in Val Camonica, correlated with the formation of the first sedentary settlements. In the field of rock art, human figures and sets of geometric elements, such as rectangles and dots, constitute the main elements of the compositions and complete the symbolic meaning of the anthropomorphical petroglyphs. Similar carvings are present in the Regional Reserve of Rock Engravings of Ceto and Paspardo; the pertaining to the Neolithic of the schematic anthropomorphic figures, so called "oranti", is questioned, as some scholars refer them to the Bronze Age.
According to this interpretation, the only set of figures pertaining to the Neolithic, or to a Neolithic-first Copper Age phase, is constituted by the geometric patterns, which are interpreted as topographic representation of a cultivated and ploughed land. During this period, domesticated animals are encountered such as dogs and bulls. Till the end of the Camunian II period, objects of worshipping became wider; the dog, the first-domesticated animal started to be worshipped. During the Copper Age, new symbols appeared, documenting the emergence of the wheel, the wagon and the first forms of metallurgy. Alpine rock art began to develop in this period. Rocks were stained with celestial symbols, weapons, depictions of plowing, chains of human-beings and other signs. Although the anthropomorphic figures were primitive at first these images were more intense and more complicated by adding weapons, astral disks and rectangular that symbolize the world in addition to simple figures; these monuments, preserved in the Archaeological Park of National Massi Cemmo and in that of Asinino-Anvòia, indicate a ritual function linked to the veneration of ancestors.
During the Bronze Age, engravings on rock outcrops took on the issue of weapons, reflecting the greater emphasis given them by the warriors in the camunian society of the time. Continuing emphasis was given in continuity with engravings from earlier eras; the engravings of the Iron Age are attributed to the people of Camunni and constitute about 70-80% of all census figures. These works manifest their ideals of heroic superiority. Dominant themes include representations of duels and human figures large ones, flaunting their weapons, their muscles and their genitals. There are figures of cabins, footprints, hunting scenes and other symbols. Topographic patterns are present in the centr