Dumbarton Oaks is a historic estate in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D. C, it was the garden of Robert Woods Bliss and his wife Mildred Barnes Bliss. The Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection was founded here by the Bliss couple, who gave the property to Harvard University in 1940; the research institute that has emerged from this bequest is dedicated to supporting scholarship in the fields of Byzantine and Pre-Columbian studies, as well as garden design and landscape architecture through its research fellowships, meetings and publications. Dumbarton Oaks opens its garden and museum collections to the public, hosts public lectures and a concert series; the land of Dumbarton Oaks was part of the Rock of Dumbarton grant that Queen Anne made in 1702 to Colonel Ninian Beall. Around 1801, William Hammond Dorsey built the first house on the property and an orangery, in the mid-nineteenth century, Edward Magruder Linthicum enlarged the residence and named it The Oaks; the Oaks was the Washington residence of U.
S. Senator and Vice President John C. Calhoun between 1822 and 1829. In 1846, Edward Linthicum bought the house, enlarged it. In 1891, Henry F. Blount bought the house. Mildred and Robert Woods Bliss acquired the property in 1920, in 1933 they gave it the name of Dumbarton Oaks, combining its two historic names; the Blisses engaged the architect Frederick H. Brooke to renovate and enlarge the house, thereby creating a Colonial Revival residence from the existing Linthicum-era Italianate structure. Over time, the Blisses increased the grounds to 54 acres and engaged the landscape architect Beatrix Farrand to design a series of terraced gardens and a wilderness on this acreage, in collaboration with Mildred Bliss; the Blisses’ architectural additions to the estate included four service court buildings and a music room, designed by Lawrence Grant White of the New York City architectural firm of McKim and White, the superintendent's dwelling, designed by Farrand. Renamed the Fellows Building, this building is now known as the Guest House.
After retiring to Dumbarton Oaks in 1933, the Blisses began laying the groundwork for the creation of a research institute. They increased their considerable collection of artworks and reference books, forming the nucleus of what would become the Research Library and Collection. In 1938 they engaged the architect Thomas T. Waterman to build two pavilions to house their Byzantine Collection and an 8,000-volume library, in 1940 gave Dumbarton Oaks to Harvard University, Robert Bliss's alma mater. At the same time they gave a portion of the grounds—some 27 acres—to the National Park Service to establish the Dumbarton Oaks Park. In 1941, the administrative structure of Dumbarton Oaks, now owned by Harvard University, was modeled according to the following design: the Trustees for Harvard University, composed of the President and Fellows of Harvard College, made all appointments, including those to the Administrative Committee, which in turn would supervise the entire operation and refer to the Trustees such recommendations as may require their action.
This committee was first chaired by Paul J. Sachs, Harvard Professor and Associate Director of the Fogg Art Museum, but by 1953 it was chaired by the Dean or Provost and, beginning in 1961 and thereafter, by the President of Harvard University. In early years the Administrative Committee appointed a Board of Scholars to make recommendations in regard to all scholarly activities; the Board of Scholars was first organized in 1942. In 1952, this board was titled the Board for Scholars in Byzantine Studies. In 1953, a Garden Advisory Committee was created to make recommendations in regard to the garden and to the Garden Library and its Fellows, in 1963 an Advisory Committee for Pre-Columbian Art was created; the Administrative Committee historically appointed a Visiting Committee consisting of persons interested in the welfare and broad aims of Dumbarton Oaks. This committee was abolished in 1960. Wishing to increase the scholarly mission of Dumbarton Oaks, in the early 1960s the Blisses sponsored the construction of two new wings, one designed by Philip Johnson to house the Robert Woods Bliss Collection of Pre-Columbian Art and its research library and, the other, a garden library designed by Frederic Rhinelander King, of the New York City architectural firm Wyeth and King, to house the botanical and garden architecture rare books and garden history reference materials that Mildred Bliss had collected.
In 1937, Mildred Bliss commissioned Igor Stravinsky to compose a concerto in the tradition of Bach's Brandenburg concertos to celebrate the Blisses' thirtieth wedding anniversary. Nadia Boulanger conducted its premiere on May 8, 1938 in the Dumbarton Oaks music room, due to the composer's indisposition from tuberculosis. At Mildred Bliss's request, the Concerto in E-flat was subtitled “Dumbarton Oaks 8-v-1938,” and the work is now known as The Dumbarton Oaks Concerto. Igor Stravinsky conducted the concerto in the Dumbarton Oaks music room on April 25, 1947 and again for the Bliss's golden wedding anniversary, on May 8, 1958, he conducted the first performance of his Septet, dedicated to the Dumbarton Oaks Research Library a
The Byzantine Empire referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire in its eastern provinces during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, when its capital city was Constantinople. It survived the fragmentation and fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD and continued to exist for an additional thousand years until it fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1453. During most of its existence, the empire was the most powerful economic and military force in Europe. Both the terms "Byzantine Empire" and "Eastern Roman Empire" are historiographical terms created after the end of the realm. Several signal events from the 4th to 6th centuries mark the period of transition during which the Roman Empire's Greek East and Latin West diverged. Constantine I reorganised the empire, made Constantinople the new capital, legalised Christianity. Under Theodosius I, Christianity became the Empire's official state religion and other religious practices were proscribed.
Under the reign of Heraclius, the Empire's military and administration were restructured and adopted Greek for official use in place of Latin. Thus, although the Roman state continued and its traditions were maintained, modern historians distinguish Byzantium from ancient Rome insofar as it was centred on Constantinople, oriented towards Greek rather than Latin culture, characterised by Eastern Orthodox Christianity; the borders of the empire evolved over its existence, as it went through several cycles of decline and recovery. During the reign of Justinian I, the empire reached its greatest extent after reconquering much of the Roman western Mediterranean coast, including North Africa and Rome itself, which it held for two more centuries; the Byzantine–Sasanian War of 602–628 exhausted the empire's resources and contributed to major territorial losses during the Early Muslim conquests of the 7th century, when it lost its richest provinces and Syria, to the Arab caliphate. During the Macedonian dynasty, the empire expanded again and experienced the two-century long Macedonian Renaissance, which came to an end with the loss of much of Asia Minor to the Seljuk Turks after the Battle of Manzikert in 1071.
This battle opened the way for the Turks to settle in Anatolia. The empire recovered during the Komnenian restoration, by the 12th century Constantinople was the largest and wealthiest European city. However, it was delivered a mortal blow during the Fourth Crusade, when Constantinople was sacked in 1204 and the territories that the empire governed were divided into competing Byzantine Greek and Latin realms. Despite the eventual recovery of Constantinople in 1261, the Byzantine Empire remained only one of several small rival states in the area for the final two centuries of its existence, its remaining territories were progressively annexed by the Ottomans over the 15th century. The Fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Empire in 1453 ended the Byzantine Empire; the last of the imperial Byzantine successor states, the Empire of Trebizond, would be conquered by the Ottomans eight years in the 1461 Siege of Trebizond. The first use of the term "Byzantine" to label the years of the Roman Empire was in 1557, when the German historian Hieronymus Wolf published his work Corpus Historiæ Byzantinæ, a collection of historical sources.
The term comes from "Byzantium", the name of the city of Constantinople before it became Constantine's capital. This older name of the city would be used from this point onward except in historical or poetic contexts; the publication in 1648 of the Byzantine du Louvre, in 1680 of Du Cange's Historia Byzantina further popularised the use of "Byzantine" among French authors, such as Montesquieu. However, it was not until the mid-19th century that the term came into general use in the Western world; the Byzantine Empire was known to its inhabitants as the "Roman Empire", the "Empire of the Romans", "Romania", the "Roman Republic", as "Rhōmais". The inhabitants called themselves Romaioi and as late as the 19th century Greeks referred to Modern Greek as Romaiika "Romaic." After 1204 when the Byzantine Empire was confined to its purely Greek provinces the term'Hellenes' was used instead. While the Byzantine Empire had a multi-ethnic character during most of its history and preserved Romano-Hellenistic traditions, it became identified by its western and northern contemporaries with its predominant Greek element.
The occasional use of the term "Empire of the Greeks" in the West to refer to the Eastern Roman Empire and of the Byzantine Emperor as Imperator Graecorum were used to separate it from the prestige of the Roman Empire within the new kingdoms of the West. No such distinction existed in the Islamic and Slavic worlds, where the Empire was more straightforwardly seen as the continuation of the Roman Empire. In the Islamic world, the Roman Empire was known as Rûm; the name millet-i Rûm, or "Roman nation," was used by the Ottomans through the 20th century to refer to the former subjects of the Byzantine Empire
Pour le Mérite
The Pour le Mérite is an order of merit established in 1740 by King Frederick II of Prussia. The Pour le Mérite was awarded as both a military and civil honour and ranked, along with the Order of the Black Eagle, the Order of the Red Eagle and the House Order of Hohenzollern, among the highest orders of merit in the Kingdom of Prussia. After 1871, when the various German kingdoms, grand duchies, duchies and Hanseatic city states had come together under Prussian leadership to form the federally structured German Empire, the Prussian honours assumed, at least in public perception, the status of honours of Imperial Germany though many honours of the various German states continued to be awarded; the Pour le Mérite was an honour conferred both for civil services. It was awarded as a recognition of extraordinary personal achievement, rather than as a general marker of social status or a courtesy-honour, although certain restrictions of social class and military rank were applied; the order was secular, membership endured for the remaining lifetime of the recipient, unless renounced or revoked.
New awards of the military class ceased with the end of the Prussian monarchy in November 1918. The civil class was revived as an independent organization in 1923. Instead of the King of Prussia, the President of Germany acted as head of the order. After the Second World War, the civil class was re-established in 1952; this version of the Pour le Mérite is still active today. The Pour le Mérite is still an order into which a person is admitted into membership, like the United Kingdom's Order of the British Empire, is not a medal or state decoration. German author Ernst Jünger, who died in 1998, was the last living recipient of the military class award; the Pour le Mérite was founded in 1740 by King Frederick II of Prussia. It was named in French, the leading international language and the favoured language at Frederick's court; the French name was retained, despite the rising tide of nationalism and increasing hostility between French and Germans during the 19th century, many of its recipients were honoured for acts performed in wars against France.
The insignia of the military award was a blue-enameled Maltese Cross with golden eagles between the arms and the Prussian royal cypher and the words Pour le Mérite written in gold letters on the body of the cross. The ribbon was black with edge stripes of silver-white; the order consisted of only one class, both civil and military, until 1810. Only a few civilians were honored: Francesco Algarotti and Voltaire. In January 1810, during the Napoleonic wars, King Frederick William III decreed that the award could be presented only to serving military officers. In March 1813, the king added an additional distinction, a spray of gilt oak leaves attached above the cross. Award of the oak leaves indicated extraordinary achievement in battle, was reserved for high-ranking officers; the original regulations called for the capture or successful defense of a fortification, or victory in a battle. By World War I, the oak leaves indicated a second or higher award of the Pour le Mérite, though in most cases the recipients were still high-ranking officers.
In early 1918, it was proposed to award the oak leaves to Germany's top flying ace, Manfred von Richthofen, but he was deemed ineligible under a strict reading of the regulations. Instead, Prussia awarded von Richthofen a less prestigious honor, the Order of the Red Eagle, 3rd Class with Crown and Swords; this was still a high honor, as the 3rd Class was awarded to colonels and lieutenant colonels, von Richthofen's award was one of only two of the 3rd Class with Crown and Swords during World War I. In 1866, a special military Grand Cross class of the award was established; this grade of the award was given to those who, through their actions, caused the retreat or destruction of an army. There were only five awards of the Grand Cross: to King Wilhelm I in 1866, to Crown Prince Frederick William of Prussia and Prince Frederick Charles of Prussia in 1873, to Tsar Alexander II of Russia in 1878, to Helmuth Graf von Moltke in 1879; the Pour le Mérite gained international fame during World War I.
Although it could be awarded to any military officer, its most famous recipients were the pilots of the German Army Air Service, whose exploits were celebrated in wartime propaganda. In aerial warfare, a fighter pilot was entitled to the award upon downing eight enemy aircraft. Aces Max Immelmann and Oswald Boelcke were the first airmen to receive the award, on January 12, 1916, it was awarded to Germany's highest-scoring ace, Manfred von Richthofen, in January 1917. Although it has been reported that because of Immelmann's renown among his fellow pilots and the nation at large, the Pour le Mérite became known, due to its color and Immelmann's first name, as the "Blue Max," that has not been confirmed; the number of aerial victories necessary to receive the award continued to increase during the war. However, other aviation recipients
National Library of the Czech Republic
The National Library of the Czech Republic is the central library of the Czech Republic. It is directed by the Ministry of Culture; the library's main building is located in the historical Clementinum building in Prague, where half of its books are kept. The other half of the collection is stored in the district of Hostivař; the National Library is the biggest library in the Czech Republic, in its funds there are around 6 million documents. The library has around 60,000 registered readers; as well as Czech texts, the library stores older material from Turkey and India. The library houses books for Charles University in Prague; the library won international recognition in 2005 as it received the inaugural Jikji Prize from UNESCO via the Memory of the World Programme for its efforts in digitising old texts. The project, which commenced in 1992, involved the digitisation of 1,700 documents in its first 13 years; the most precious medieval manuscripts preserved in the National Library are the Codex Vyssegradensis and the Passional of Abbes Kunigunde.
In 2006 the Czech parliament approved funding for the construction of a new library building on Letna plain, between Hradčanská metro station and Sparta Prague's football ground, Letná stadium. In March 2007, following a request for tender, Czech architect Jan Kaplický was selected by a jury to undertake the project, with a projected completion date of 2011. In 2007 the project was delayed following objections regarding its proposed location from government officials including Prague Mayor Pavel Bém and President Václav Klaus. Plans for the building had still not been decided in February 2008, with the matter being referred to the Office for the Protection of Competition in order to determine if the tender had been won fairly. In 2008, Minister of Culture Václav Jehlička announced the end of the project, following a ruling from the European Commission that the tender process had not been carried out legally; the library was affected by the 2002 European floods, with some documents moved to upper levels to avoid the excess water.
Over 4,000 books were removed from the library in July 2011 following flooding in parts of the main building. There was a fire at the library in December 2012. List of national and state libraries Official website
Virtual International Authority File
The Virtual International Authority File is an international authority file. It is a joint project of several national libraries and operated by the Online Computer Library Center. Discussion about having a common international authority started in the late 1990s. After a series of failed attempts to come up with a unique common authority file, the new idea was to link existing national authorities; this would present all the benefits of a common file without requiring a large investment of time and expense in the process. The project was initiated by the US Library of Congress, the German National Library and the OCLC on August 6, 2003; the Bibliothèque nationale de France joined the project on October 5, 2007. The project transitioned to being a service of the OCLC on April 4, 2012; the aim is to link the national authority files to a single virtual authority file. In this file, identical records from the different data sets are linked together. A VIAF record receives a standard data number, contains the primary "see" and "see also" records from the original records, refers to the original authority records.
The data are available for research and data exchange and sharing. Reciprocal updating uses the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting protocol; the file numbers are being added to Wikipedia biographical articles and are incorporated into Wikidata. VIAF's clustering algorithm is run every month; as more data are added from participating libraries, clusters of authority records may coalesce or split, leading to some fluctuation in the VIAF identifier of certain authority records. Authority control Faceted Application of Subject Terminology Integrated Authority File International Standard Authority Data Number International Standard Name Identifier Wikipedia's authority control template for articles Official website VIAF at OCLC
Integrated Authority File
The Integrated Authority File or GND is an international authority file for the organisation of personal names, subject headings and corporate bodies from catalogues. It is used for documentation in libraries and also by archives and museums; the GND is managed by the German National Library in cooperation with various regional library networks in German-speaking Europe and other partners. The GND falls under the Creative Commons Zero licence; the GND specification provides a hierarchy of high-level entities and sub-classes, useful in library classification, an approach to unambiguous identification of single elements. It comprises an ontology intended for knowledge representation in the semantic web, available in the RDF format; the Integrated Authority File became operational in April 2012 and integrates the content of the following authority files, which have since been discontinued: Name Authority File Corporate Bodies Authority File Subject Headings Authority File Uniform Title File of the Deutsches Musikarchiv At the time of its introduction on 5 April 2012, the GND held 9,493,860 files, including 2,650,000 personalised names.
There are seven main types of GND entities: LIBRIS Virtual International Authority File Information pages about the GND from the German National Library Search via OGND Bereitstellung des ersten GND-Grundbestandes DNB, 19 April 2012 From Authority Control to Linked Authority Data Presentation given by Reinhold Heuvelmann to the ALA MARC Formats Interest Group, June 2012