Nathaniel Hawthorne was an American novelist, dark romantic, short story writer. He was born in 1804 in Salem, Massachusetts, to Nathaniel Hathorne and the former Elizabeth Clarke Manning, his ancestors include John Hathorne, the only judge involved in the Salem witch trials who never repented of his actions. He entered Bowdoin College in 1821, was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in 1824, graduated in 1825, he published his first work in the novel Fanshawe. He published several short stories in periodicals; the next year, he became engaged to Sophia Peabody. He worked at the Boston Custom House and joined Brook Farm, a transcendentalist community, before marrying Peabody in 1842; the couple moved to The Old Manse in Concord, Massachusetts moving to Salem, the Berkshires to The Wayside in Concord. The Scarlet Letter was published followed by a succession of other novels. A political appointment as consul took Hawthorne and family to Europe before their return to Concord in 1860. Hawthorne died on May 19, 1864, was survived by his wife and their three children.
Much of Hawthorne's writing centers on New England, many works featuring moral metaphors with an anti-Puritan inspiration. His fiction works are considered part of the Romantic movement and, more dark romanticism, his themes center on the inherent evil and sin of humanity, his works have moral messages and deep psychological complexity. His published works include novels, short stories, a biography of his college friend Franklin Pierce, the 14th President of the United States. Nathaniel Hawthorne was born on July 1804, in Salem, Massachusetts. William Hathorne was the author's great-great-great-grandfather, he was a Puritan and was the first of the family to emigrate from England, settling in Dorchester, before moving to Salem. There he became an important member of the Massachusetts Bay Colony and held many political positions, including magistrate and judge, becoming infamous for his harsh sentencing. William's son and the author's great-great-grandfather John Hathorne was one of the judges who oversaw the Salem witch trials.
Hawthorne added the "w" to his surname in his early twenties, shortly after graduating from college, in an effort to dissociate himself from his notorious forebears. Hawthorne's father Nathaniel Hathorne Sr. was a sea captain who died in 1808 of yellow fever in Suriname. After his death, his widow moved with young Nathaniel and two daughters to live with relatives named the Mannings in Salem, where they lived for 10 years. Young Hawthorne was hit on the leg while playing "bat and ball" on November 10, 1813, he became lame and bedridden for a year, though several physicians could find nothing wrong with him. In the summer of 1816, the family lived as boarders with farmers before moving to a home built for them by Hawthorne's uncles Richard and Robert Manning in Raymond, near Sebago Lake. Years Hawthorne looked back at his time in Maine fondly: "Those were delightful days, for that part of the country was wild with only scattered clearings, nine tenths of it primeval woods." In 1819, he was sent back to Salem for school and soon complained of homesickness and being too far from his mother and sisters.
He distributed seven issues of The Spectator to his family in August and September 1820 for the sake of having fun. The homemade newspaper was written by hand and included essays and news featuring the young author's adolescent humor. Hawthorne's uncle Robert Manning insisted. With the financial support of his uncle, Hawthorne was sent to Bowdoin College in 1821 because of family connections in the area, because of its inexpensive tuition rate. Hawthorne met future president Franklin Pierce on the way to Bowdoin, at the stage stop in Portland, the two became fast friends. Once at the school, he met future poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, future congressman Jonathan Cilley, future naval reformer Horatio Bridge, he graduated with the class of 1825, described his college experience to Richard Henry Stoddard: I was educated at Bowdoin College. I was an idle student, negligent of college rules and the Procrustean details of academic life, rather choosing to nurse my own fancies than to dig into Greek roots and be numbered among the learned Thebans.
In 1836, Hawthorne served as the editor of the American Magazine of Useful and Entertaining Knowledge. At the time, he boarded with poet Thomas Green Fessenden on Hancock Street in Beacon Hill in Boston, he was offered an appointment as weigher and gauger at the Boston Custom House at a salary of $1,500 a year, which he accepted on January 17, 1839. During his time there, he rented a room from George Stillman Hillard, business partner of Charles Sumner. Hawthorne wrote in the comparative obscurity of; as he looked back on this period of his life, he wrote: "I have not lived, but only dreamed about living." He contributed short stories to various magazines and annuals, including "Young Goodman Brown" and "The Minister's Black Veil", though none drew major attention to him. Horatio Bridge offered to cover the risk of collecting these stories in the spring of 1837 into the volume Twice-Told Tales, which made Hawthorne known locally. While at Bowdoin, Hawthorne wagered a bottle of Madeira wine with his friend Jonathan Cilley that Cilley would get married before Hawthorne did.
The Washington Monument is an obelisk on the National Mall in Washington, D. C. built to commemorate George Washington, once commander-in-chief of the Continental Army and the first President of the United States. Located due east of the Reflecting Pool and the Lincoln Memorial, the monument, made of marble and bluestone gneiss, is both the world's tallest predominantly stone structure and the world's tallest obelisk, standing 554 feet 7 11⁄32 inches tall according to the National Geodetic Survey or 555 feet 5 1⁄8 inches tall according to the National Park Service, it is the tallest monumental column in the world if all are measured above their pedestrian entrances. It was the tallest structure in the world from 1884 to 1889, when it was overtaken by the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Construction of the monument began in 1848 and was halted from 1854 to 1877 due to a lack of funds, a struggle for control over the Washington National Monument Society, the intervention of the American Civil War. Although the stone structure was completed in 1884, internal ironwork, the knoll, other finishing touches were not completed until 1888.
A difference in shading of the marble, visible 150 feet or 27% up, shows where construction was halted and resumed with marble from a different source. The original design was by Robert Mills, but he did not include his proposed colonnade due to a lack of funds, proceeding only with a bare obelisk; the cornerstone was laid on July 4, 1848. The Washington Monument is a hollow Egyptian style stone obelisk with a 500-foot tall column and a 55-foot tall pyramidion, its walls are 1 1⁄2 feet thick at their top. The marble pyramidion has thin walls only 7 inches thick supported by six arches, two between opposite walls that cross at the center of the pyramidion and four smaller corner arches; the top of the pyramidion is a large marble capstone with a small aluminum pyramid at its apex with inscriptions on all four sides. The lowest 150 feet of the walls, constructed during the first phase 1848–1854, are composed of a pile of bluestone gneiss rubble stones held together by a large amount of mortar with a facade of semi-finished marble stones about 1 1⁄4 feet thick.
The upper 350 feet of the walls, constructed during the second phase 1880–1884, are composed of finished marble surface stones, half of which project into the walls backed by finished granite stones. The interior is occupied by iron stairs that spiral up the walls, with an elevator in the center, each supported by four iron columns, which do not support the stone structure; the stairs contain fifty sections, most on the north and south walls, with many long landings stretching between them along the east and west walls. These landings allowed many inscribed memorial stones of various materials and sizes to be viewed while the stairs were accessible, plus one memorial stone between stairs, difficult to view; the pyramidion has eight observation windows, two per side, eight red aircraft warning lights, two per side. Two aluminum lightning rods connected via the elevator support columns to ground water protect the monument; the monument's present foundation is 37 feet thick, consisting of half of its original bluestone gneiss rubble encased in concrete.
At the northeast corner of the foundation, 21 feet below ground, is the marble cornerstone, including a zinc case filled with memorabilia. Fifty American flags fly 24 hours a day on a large circle of flag poles centered on the monument. In 2001, a temporary screening facility was added to the entrance to prevent a terrorist attack. In 2011, an earthquake damaged the monument the pyramidion. George Washington, hailed as the father of his country, as the leader, "first in war, first in peace and first in the hearts of his countrymen", was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799, his former enemy King George III called him "the greatest character of the age."At his death in 1799, he left a critical legacy. Washington was the unchallenged public icon of American civic patriotism, he was identified with the Federalist Party, which lost control of the national government in 1800 to the Jeffersonian Republicans, who were reluctant to celebrate the hero of the opposition party.
Starting with victory in the Revolution, there were many proposals to build a monument to Washington. After his death, Congress authorized a suitable memorial in the national capital, but the decision was reversed when the Democratic-Republican Party took control of Congress in 1801; the Republicans were dismayed. They blocked his image on coins or the celebration of his birthday. Further political squabbling, along with the North–South division on the Civil War, blocked the completion of the Washington Monument until the late 19th century. By that time, Washington had the image of a national hero who could be celebrated by both North and South, memorials to him were no longer contr
Ancient Egypt in the Western imagination
Egypt has had a legendary image in the Western world through the Greek and Hebrew traditions. Egypt was ancient to outsiders, the idea of Egypt has continued to be at least as influential in the history of ideas as the actual historical Egypt itself. All Egyptian culture was transmitted to Roman and post-Roman European culture through the lens of Hellenistic conceptions of it, until the decipherment of Egyptian hieroglyphics by Jean-François Champollion in the 1820s rendered Egyptian texts legible enabling an understanding of Egypt as the Egyptians themselves understood it. After Late Antiquity, the Old Testament image of Egypt as the land of enslavement for the Hebrews predominated, "Pharaoh" became a synonym for despotism and oppression in the 19th century. However, Enlightenment thinking and colonialist explorations in the late 18th century renewed interest in ancient Egypt as both a model for, an exotic alternative to, Western culture as a Romantic source for classicizing architecture.
Herodotus, in his Histories, Book II, gives a detailed if selectively coloured and imaginative description of ancient Egypt. He praises peasants' preservation of history through oral tradition, Egyptians' piety, he lists the many animals to which Egypt is home, including the mythical phoenix and winged serpent, gives inaccurate descriptions of the hippopotamus and horned viper. Herodotus was quite critical about the stories he heard from the priests, but Diodorus Siculus, who visited Hellenistic Egypt in the 1st century BCE, gave credit to what he was told by priests: that many famous Greek philosophers had studied in Egypt. Both Plutarch and Diogenes Laërtius mention that Thales studied in Egypt, while nothing is known about Thales from his own time. Iamblichus of Chalcis in the 3rd century CE reports. From the classical texts that thus evolved, a mythical Egypt emerges as the mother-country of Religion, Wisdom and Science. Among the Romans, an Egypt, drawn into the Roman economic and political sphere was still a source of wonders: Ex Africa semper aliquid novi.
Egypt is mentioned 611 times in the Bible, between Genesis 12:10 and Revelation 11:8. The Septuagint, through which most Christians knew the Hebrew Bible, was commissioned in Alexandria, it was remembered, with the embellishment that though the seventy scholars set to work upon the texts independently, miraculously each arrived at the same translation. Following the 7th-century Muslim conquest of Egypt, the West lost direct contact with Egypt and its culture. In Medieval Europe, Egypt was depicted in the illustration and interpretation of the biblical accounts; these illustrations were quite fanciful, as the iconography and style of ancient Egyptian art and costume were unknown in the West. Dramatic settings of the Finding of Moses, the Plagues of Egypt, the Parting of the Red Sea and the story of Joseph in Egypt, from the New Testament the Flight into Egypt figured in medieval illuminated manuscripts. Biblical hermeneutics were theological in nature, had little to do with historical investigations.
Throughout the Middle Ages "Mummia", made, if it were genuine, by pounding mummified bodies, was a standard product of apothecary shops. During the Renaissance the German Jesuit scholar Athanasius Kircher gave an allegorical "decipherment" of hieroglyphs through which Egypt was thought of as a source of ancient mystic or occult wisdom. In alchemist circles, the prestige of "Egyptians" rose. A few scholars, remained skeptic: in the 16th century, Isaac Casaubon determined that the Corpus Hermeticum of the great Hermes Trismegistus was a Greek work of about the 4th century CE. Early in the 18th century, Jean Terrasson had written Life of Sethos, a work of fiction, which launched the notion of Egyptian mysteries. In an atmosphere of antiquarian interest, a sense arose that ancient knowledge was somehow embodied in Egyptian monuments and lore. Following the Rosicrucian example, an Egyptian imagery pervaded the European Freemasonry of the time and its imagery, such as the eye on the pyramid — still depicted on the Great Seal of the United States, which appears on the United States one-dollar bill — and the Egyptian references in Mozart's Masonic-themed Die Zauberflöte, his earlier unfinished "Thamos".
The revival of curiosity about the Antique world, seen through written documents, spurred the publication of a collection of Greek texts, assembled in Late Antiquity, which were published as the corpus of works of Hermes Trismegistus. But the broken ruins that sometimes appeared in paintings of the episode of the Rest on the Flight into Egypt were always of Roman character. With historicism came the first fictions set in the Egypt of the imagination. Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra had been set in Alexandria, but its protagonists were noble and universal, Shakespeare had not been concerned to evoke local color; the rationale for "Egyptomania" rests on a similar concept: Westerners looked to ancient Egyptian motifs because ancient Egypt itself was intrinsically so alluring. The Egyptians used to consider their government somewhat eternal.
Cleopatra VII Philopator was the last active ruler of the Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, nominally survived as pharaoh by her son Caesarion. As a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, she was a descendant of its founder Ptolemy I Soter, a Macedonian Greek general and companion of Alexander the Great. After the death of Cleopatra, Egypt became a province of the Roman Empire, marking the end of the Hellenistic period that had lasted since the reign of Alexander. While her native language was Koine Greek, she was the first Ptolemaic ruler to learn the Egyptian language. In 58 BC, Cleopatra accompanied her father Ptolemy XII during his exile to Rome, after a revolt in Egypt allowed his eldest daughter Berenice IV to claim the throne; the latter was killed in 55 BC. When Ptolemy XII died in 51 BC, he was succeeded by Cleopatra and her younger brother Ptolemy XIII as joint rulers, but a falling-out between them led to open civil war. After losing the 48 BC Battle of Pharsalus in Greece against his rival Julius Caesar in Caesar's Civil War, the Roman statesman Pompey fled to Egypt, a Roman client state.
Ptolemy XIII had Pompey killed. Caesar, a consul of the Roman Republic, attempted to reconcile Ptolemy XIII with Cleopatra. Ptolemy XIII's chief adviser Potheinos viewed Caesar's terms as favoring Cleopatra, so his forces, which fell under the control of Cleopatra's younger sister, Arsinoe IV, besieged Caesar and Cleopatra at the palace; the siege was lifted by reinforcements in early 47 BC and Ptolemy XIII died shortly thereafter in the Battle of the Nile. Arsinoe IV was exiled to Ephesus, Caesar, now an elected dictator, declared Cleopatra and her younger brother Ptolemy XIV as joint rulers of Egypt. However, Caesar maintained a private affair with Cleopatra that produced Caesarion. Cleopatra traveled to Rome as a client queen in 44 BC, staying at Caesar's villa; when Caesar was assassinated in 44 BC, Cleopatra attempted to have Caesarion named as his heir, but this fell instead to Caesar's grandnephew Octavian. Cleopatra had Ptolemy XIV killed and elevated Caesarion as co-ruler. In the Liberators' civil war of 43–42 BC, Cleopatra sided with the Roman Second Triumvirate formed by Octavian, Mark Antony, Marcus Aemilius Lepidus.
After their meeting at Tarsos in 41 BC, Cleopatra had an affair with Antony that would produce three children: Alexander Helios, Cleopatra Selene II, Ptolemy Philadelphus. Antony used his authority as a triumvir to carry out the execution of Arsinoe IV at Cleopatra's request, he became reliant on Cleopatra for both funding and military aid during his invasions of the Parthian Empire and Kingdom of Armenia. In the Donations of Alexandria, Cleopatra's children with Antony were declared rulers over various erstwhile territories under Antony's authority; this event, along with his marriage to Cleopatra and divorce of Octavian's sister Octavia Minor, led to the Final War of the Roman Republic. After engaging in a war of propaganda, Octavian forced Antony's allies in the Roman Senate to flee Rome in 32 BC and declared war on Cleopatra; the naval fleet of Antony and Cleopatra was defeated at the 31 BC Battle of Actium by Octavian's general Agrippa. Octavian's forces defeated those of Antony, leading to his suicide.
When Cleopatra learned that Octavian planned to bring her to Rome for his triumphal procession, she committed suicide by poisoning, with the popular belief being that she was bitten by an asp. Cleopatra's legacy survives in numerous works of both ancient and modern. Roman historiography and Latin poetry produced a polemic and negative view of the queen that pervaded Medieval and Renaissance literature. In the visual arts, ancient depictions of Cleopatra include Roman and Ptolemaic coinage, busts, cameo glass, cameo carvings, paintings, she was the subject of many works in Renaissance and Baroque art, which included sculptures, poetry, theatrical dramas such as William Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra, operas such as George Frideric Handel's Giulio Cesare in Egitto. In modern times Cleopatra has appeared in both the applied and fine arts, burlesque satire, Hollywood films such as Cleopatra, brand images for commercial products, becoming a pop culture icon of Egyptomania since the Victorian era.
The Latinized form Cleopatra comes from the Ancient Greek Kleopátrā, meaning "glory of her father", from κλέος and πᾰτήρ. The masculine form would have been written either as Pátroklos. Cleopatra was the name of Alexander the Great's sister, as well as Cleopatra Alcyone, wife of Meleager in Greek mythology. Through the marriage of Ptolemy V Epiphanes and Cleopatra I Syra, the name entered the Ptolemaic dynasty. Cleopatra's adopted title Theā́ Philopátōra means "goddess who loves her father." Ptolemaic pharaohs were crowned by the Egyptian High Priest of Ptah at Memphis, but resided in the multicultural and Greek city of Alexandria, established by Alexander the Great of Macedon. They spoke Greek and governed Egypt as Hellenistic Greek monarchs, refusing to learn the native Egyptian language. In contrast, Cleopatra could speak multiple languages by adulthood and was the first Ptolemaic ruler to learn the Egyptian language, she spoke Ethiopian, Hebrew, the Syrian language, Median and Latin
The Mummy (1932 film)
The Mummy is a 1932 American pre-Code horror film directed by Karl Freund. The screenplay by John L. Balderston was from a story by Nina Wilcox Richard Schayer. Released by Universal Studios, the film stars Boris Karloff, Zita Johann, David Manners, Edward Van Sloan and Arthur Byron; the film is about an ancient Egyptian mummy named Imhotep, discovered by a team of archeologists and inadvertently brought back to life through a magic scroll. Disguised as a modern Egyptian, the mummy searches for his lost love, who he believes has been reincarnated into a modern girl. In 1921, an archaeological expedition led by Sir Joseph Whemple finds the mummy of an ancient Egyptian high priest named Imhotep; when an inspection of the mummy by Whemple's friend Dr. Muller reveals that the viscera were not removed, Muller deduces that although Imhotep had been wrapped like a traditional mummy, he had been buried alive. Buried with Imhotep is a casket with a curse on it. Despite Muller's warning, Sir Joseph's assistant Ralph Norton opens it.
He reads aloud an ancient life-giving scroll, the "Scroll of Thoth". Imhotep rises, the sight of which snaps Norton’s mind and causes him to laugh hysterically, as the Mummy shuffles off with the scroll. Ten years Imhotep is masquerading as a modern Egyptian named Ardath Bey, he calls upon Sir Joseph's son Frank and Professor Pearson and shows them where to dig to find the tomb of the princess Ankh-es-en-amon. After locating the tomb, the archaeologists present its treasures to the Cairo Museum and thank Bey for making their discovery possible, it is further revealed that Imhotep's horrific death was punishment for sacrilege: attempting to resurrect his forbidden lover, Princess Ankh-es-en-amon. Imhotep soon encounters Helen Grosvenor, a half-Egyptian woman bearing a striking resemblance to the princess. Believing her to be Ankh-es-en-amon's reincarnation, he attempts to kill her, with the intention of mummifying her, resurrecting her, making her his bride. Helen is rescued when she remembers her ancestral past life and prays to the goddess Isis to come to her aid.
The statue of Isis emits a flash that sets the Scroll of Thoth on fire. This breaks the spell. At the urging of Dr. Muller, Frank calls Helen back to the world of the living while the Scroll of Thoth continues to burn. In credits orderBoris Karloff as Ardath Bey / Imhotep / The Mummy Zita Johann as Helen Grosvenor / Princess Ankh-es-en-Amon David Manners as Frank Whemple Arthur Byron as Sir Joseph Whemple Edward Van Sloan as Dr. Muller Bramwell Fletcher as Ralph Norton Noble Johnson as The Nubian Kathryn Byron as Frau Muller Leonard Mudie as Professor Pearson James Crane as Pharaoh Amenophis Henry Victor as The Saxon Warrior. C. Montague Shaw as Gentleman Inspired by the opening of Tutankhamun's tomb in 1922 and the Curse of the Pharaohs, producer Carl Laemmle Jr. commissioned story editor Richard Schayer to find a literary novel to form a basis for an Egyptian-themed horror film, just as the novels Dracula and Frankenstein informed their 1931 films Dracula and Frankenstein. Schayer found none although the plot bears a strong resemblance to a short story by Arthur Conan Doyle entitled "The Ring of Thoth".
Schayer and writer Nina Wilcox Putnam learned about Alessandro Cagliostro and wrote a nine-page treatment entitled Cagliostro. The story, set in San Francisco, was about a 3,000-year-old magician who survives by injecting nitrates. Laemmle was pleased with these ideas, he hired John L. Balderston to write the script. Balderston had contributed to Dracula and Frankenstein, had covered the opening of Tutankhamun's tomb for New York World when he was a journalist so he was more than familiar with the popular tomb unearthing. Balderston moved the story to Egypt and renamed the film and its title character Imhotep, after the historical architect, he changed the story from one of revenge upon all the women who resembled the main character's ex-lover to one where the main character is determined to revive his old love by killing and mummifying her reincarnated self before resurrecting her with the spell of the Scroll of Thoth. Balderston invented the Scroll of Thoth. Thoth was the wisest of the Egyptian gods who, when Osiris died, helped Isis bring her love back from the dead.
Thoth is believed to have authored The Book of the Dead, which may have been the inspiration for Balderston's Scroll of Thoth. Another source of inspiration is the fictional Book of Thoth that appeared in several ancient Egyptian stories. Karl Freund, the cinematographer on Dracula, was hired to direct, making this his first film in the United States as a director. Freund had been the cinematographer on Fritz Lang's Metropolis and photographed the television series I Love Lucy; the film was retitled The Mummy. Freund cast Zita Johann, who believed in reincarnation, named her character'Ankh-es-en-Amon' after the only wife of Pharaoh Tutankhamun; the real Ankhesenamon's body had not been discovered in the tomb of King Tut and her resting place was unknown. Her name, would not have been unknown to the general public. Filming was scheduled for three weeks. Karloff's first day was spent shooting the Mummy's awakening from his sarcophagus. Make-up artist Jack Pierce had studied photos of Seti I's mummy to design Imhotep.
Saint Petersburg is Russia's second-largest city after Moscow, with 5 million inhabitants in 2012, part of the Saint Petersburg agglomeration with a population of 6.2 million. An important Russian port on the Baltic Sea, it has a status of a federal subject. Situated on the Neva River, at the head of the Gulf of Finland on the Baltic Sea, it was founded by Tsar Peter the Great on 27 May 1703. During the periods 1713–1728 and 1732–1918, Saint Petersburg was the capital of Imperial Russia. In 1918, the central government bodies moved to Moscow, about 625 km to the south-east. Saint Petersburg is one of the most modern cities of Russia, as well as its cultural capital; the Historic Centre of Saint Petersburg and Related Groups of Monuments constitute a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Saint Petersburg is home to the Hermitage, one of the largest art museums in the world. Many foreign consulates, international corporations and businesses have offices in Saint Petersburg. An admirer of everything German, Peter the Great named the city, Sankt-Peterburg.
On 1 September 1914, after the outbreak of World War I, the Imperial government renamed the city Petrograd, meaning "Peter's city", in order to expunge the German name Sankt and Burg. On 26 January 1924, shortly after the death of Vladimir Lenin, it was renamed to Leningrad, meaning "Lenin's City". On 6 September 1991, Sankt-Peterburg, was returned. Today, in English the city is known as "Saint Petersburg". Local residents refer to the city by its shortened nickname, Piter; the city's traditional nicknames among Russians are the Window to Europe. Swedish colonists built Nyenskans, a fortress at the mouth of the Neva River in 1611, in what was called Ingermanland, inhabited by Finnic tribe of Ingrians; the small town of Nyen grew up around it. At the end of the 17th century, Peter the Great, interested in seafaring and maritime affairs, wanted Russia to gain a seaport in order to trade with the rest of Europe, he needed a better seaport than the country's main one at the time, on the White Sea in the far north and closed to shipping during the winter.
On 12 May 1703, during the Great Northern War, Peter the Great captured Nyenskans and soon replaced the fortress. On 27 May 1703, closer to the estuary 5 km inland from the gulf), on Zayachy Island, he laid down the Peter and Paul Fortress, which became the first brick and stone building of the new city; the city was built by conscripted peasants from all over Russia. Tens of thousands of serfs died building the city; the city became the centre of the Saint Petersburg Governorate. Peter moved the capital from Moscow to Saint Petersburg in 1712, 9 years before the Treaty of Nystad of 1721 ended the war. During its first few years, the city developed around Trinity Square on the right bank of the Neva, near the Peter and Paul Fortress. However, Saint Petersburg soon started to be built out according to a plan. By 1716 the Swiss Italian Domenico Trezzini had elaborated a project whereby the city centre would be located on Vasilyevsky Island and shaped by a rectangular grid of canals; the project is evident in the layout of the streets.
In 1716, Peter the Great appointed Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Alexandre Le Blond as the chief architect of Saint Petersburg. The style of Petrine Baroque, developed by Trezzini and other architects and exemplified by such buildings as the Menshikov Palace, Kunstkamera and Paul Cathedral, Twelve Collegia, became prominent in the city architecture of the early 18th century. In 1724 the Academy of Sciences and Academic Gymnasium were established in Saint Petersburg by Peter the Great. In 1725, Peter died at the age of fifty-two, his endeavours to modernize Russia had met with opposition from the Russian nobility—resulting in several attempts on his life and a treason case involving his son. In 1728, Peter II of Russia moved his seat back to Moscow, but four years in 1732, under Empress Anna of Russia, Saint Petersburg was again designated as the capital of the Russian Empire. It remained the seat of the Romanov dynasty and the Imperial Court of the Russian Tsars, as well as the seat of the Russian government, for another 186 years until the communist revolution of 1917.
In 1736–1737 the city suffered from catastrophic fires. To rebuild the damaged boroughs, a committee under Burkhard Christoph von Münnich commissioned a new plan in 1737; the city was divided into five boroughs, the city centre was moved to the Admiralty borough, situated on the east bank between the Neva and Fontanka. It developed along three radial streets, which meet at the Admiralty building and are now one street known as Nevsky Prospekt, Gorokhovaya Street and Voznesensky Prospekt. Baroque architecture became dominant in the city during the first sixty years, culminating in the Elizabethan Baroque, represented most notably by Italian Bartolomeo Rastrelli with such buildings as the Winter Palace. In the 1760s, Baroque architecture was succeeded by neoclassical architecture. Established in 1762, the Commission of Stone Buildings of Moscow and Saint Petersburg ruled that no structure in the
Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi was an Italian opera composer. He was born near Busseto to a provincial family of moderate means, developed a musical education with the help of a local patron. Verdi came to dominate the Italian opera scene after the era of Vincenzo Bellini, Gaetano Donizetti, Gioachino Rossini, whose works influenced him. By his 30s, he had become one of the pre-eminent opera composers in history. In his early operas, Verdi demonstrated a sympathy with the Risorgimento movement which sought the unification of Italy, he participated as an elected politician. The chorus "Va, pensiero" from his early opera Nabucco, similar choruses in operas, were much in the spirit of the unification movement, the composer himself became esteemed as a representative of these ideals. An intensely private person, however, did not seek to ingratiate himself with popular movements and as he became professionally successful was able to reduce his operatic workload and sought to establish himself as a landowner in his native region.
He surprised the musical world by returning, after his success with the opera Aida, with three late masterpieces: his Requiem, the operas Otello and Falstaff. His operas remain popular the three peaks of his'middle period': Rigoletto, Il trovatore and La traviata, the 2013 bicentenary of his birth was celebrated in broadcasts and performances. Verdi, the first child of Carlo Giuseppe Verdi and Luigia Uttini, was born at their home in Le Roncole, a village near Busseto in the Département Taro and within the borders of the First French Empire following the annexation of the Duchy of Parma and Piacenza in 1808; the baptismal register, prepared on 11 October 1813, lists his parents Carlo and Luigia as "innkeeper" and "spinner" respectively. Additionally, it lists Verdi as being "born yesterday", but since days were considered to begin at sunset, this could have meant either 9 or 10 October. Following his mother, Verdi always celebrated his birthday on 9 October, the day he himself believed he was born.
Verdi had a younger sister, who died aged 17 in 1833. From the age of four, Verdi was given private lessons in Latin and Italian by the village schoolmaster, at six he attended the local school. After learning to play the organ, he showed so much interest in music that his parents provided him with a spinet. Verdi's gift for music was apparent by 1820–21 when he began his association with the local church, serving in the choir, acting as an altar boy for a while, taking organ lessons. After Baistrocchi's death, Verdi, at the age of eight, became; the music historian Roger Parker points out that both of Verdi's parents "belonged to families of small landowners and traders not the illiterate peasants from which Verdi liked to present himself as having emerged... Carlo Verdi was energetic in furthering his son's education...something which Verdi tended to hide in life... he picture emerges of youthful precocity eagerly nurtured by an ambitious father and of a sustained and elaborate formal education."In 1823, when he was 10, Verdi's parents arranged for the boy to attend school in Busseto, enrolling him in a Ginnasio—an upper school for boys—run by Don Pietro Seletti, while they continued to run their inn at Le Roncole.
Verdi returned to Busseto to play the organ on Sundays, covering the distance of several kilometres on foot. At age 11, Verdi received schooling in Italian, the humanities, rhetoric. By the time he was 12, he began lessons with Ferdinando Provesi, maestro di cappella at San Bartolomeo, director of the municipal music school and co-director of the local Società Filarmonica. Verdi stated: "From the ages of 13 to 18 I wrote a motley assortment of pieces: marches for band by the hundred as many little sinfonie that were used in church, in the theatre and at concerts, five or six concertos and sets of variations for pianoforte, which I played myself at concerts, many serenades and various pieces of church music, of which I remember only a Stabat Mater." This information comes from the Autobiographical Sketch which Verdi dictated to the publisher Giulio Ricordi late in life, in 1879, remains the leading source for his early life and career. Written, with the benefit of hindsight, it is not always reliable when dealing with issues more contentious than those of his childhood.
The other director of the Philharmonic Society was Antonio Barezzi, a wholesale grocer and distiller, described by a contemporary as a "manic dilettante" of music. The young Verdi did not become involved with the Philharmonic. By June 1827, he had graduated with honours from the Ginnasio and was able to focus on music under Provesi. By chance, when he was 13, Verdi was asked to step in as a replacement to play in what became his first public event in his home town. By 1829–30, Verdi had established himself as a leader of the Philharmonic: "none of us could rival him" reported the secretary of the organisation, Giuseppe Demaldè. An eight-movement cantata, I deliri di Saul, based on a drama by Vittorio Alfieri, was written by Verdi when he was 15 and performed in Bergamo, it was acclaimed by both Demaldè and Barezzi, who commented: "He shows a vivid imagination, a philosophical outlook, sound judgment in the arrangement of instrumental parts." In late 1829, Verdi had completed his s