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History of ancient Israel and Judah

The Kingdom of Israel and the Kingdom of Judah were related kingdoms from the Iron Age period of the ancient Levant. The Kingdom of Israel emerged as an important local power by the 10th century BCE before falling to the Neo-Assyrian Empire in 722 BCE. Israel's southern neighbor, the Kingdom of Judah, emerged in the 9th or 8th century BCE and became a client state of first the Neo-Assyrian Empire and the Neo-Babylonian Empire before a revolt against the latter led to its destruction in 586 BCE. Following the fall of Babylon to the Achaemenid Empire under Cyrus the Great in 539 BCE, some Judean exiles returned to Jerusalem, inaugurating the formative period in the development of a distinctive Judahite identity in the province of Yehud Medinata. During the Hellenistic classic period, Yehud was absorbed into the subsequent Hellenistic kingdoms that followed the conquests of Alexander the Great, but in the 2nd century BCE the Judaeans revolted against the Seleucid Empire and created the Hasmonean kingdom.

This, the last nominally independent kingdom of Israel lost its independence from 63 BCE with its conquest by Pompey of Rome, becoming a Roman and Parthian client kingdom. Following the installation of client kingdoms under the Herodian dynasty, the Province of Judea was wracked by civil disturbances, which culminated in the First Jewish–Roman War, the destruction of the Second Temple, the emergence of Rabbinic Judaism and Early Christianity; the name Judea ceased to be used by Greco-Romans after the Bar Kochba revolt of 135 CE. Iron Age I: 1200–1000 BCE Iron Age II: 1000–586 BCE Neo-Babylonian: 586–539 BCE Persian: 539–332 BCE Hellenistic: 333–53 BCEOther academic terms used are: First Temple period Second Temple period The eastern Mediterranean seaboard – the Levant – stretches 400 miles north to south from the Taurus Mountains to the Sinai Peninsula, 70 to 100 miles east to west between the sea and the Arabian Desert; the coastal plain of the southern Levant, broad in the south and narrowing to the north, is backed in its southernmost portion by a zone of foothills, the Shfela.

East of the plain and the Shfela is a mountainous ridge, the "hill country of Judah" in the south, the "hill country of Ephraim" north of that Galilee and Mount Lebanon. To the east again lie the steep-sided valley occupied by the Jordan River, the Dead Sea, the wadi of the Arabah, which continues down to the eastern arm of the Red Sea. Beyond the plateau is the Syrian desert, separating the Levant from Mesopotamia. To the southwest is Egypt, to the northeast Mesopotamia; the location and geographical characteristics of the narrow Levant made the area a battleground among the powerful entities that surrounded it. Canaan in the Late Bronze Age was a shadow of what it had been centuries earlier: many cities were abandoned, others shrank in size, the total settled population was not much more than a hundred thousand. Settlement was concentrated along major communication routes. Politically and culturally it was dominated by Egypt, each city under its own ruler at odds with its neighbours, appealing to the Egyptians to adjudicate their differences.

The Canaanite city state system broke down during the Late Bronze Age collapse, Canaanite culture was gradually absorbed into that of the Philistines and Israelites. The process was gradual and a strong Egyptian presence continued into the 12th century BCE, while some Canaanite cities were destroyed, others continued to exist in Iron Age I; the name "Israel" first appears in the Merneptah Stele c. 1209 BCE: "Israel is laid waste and his seed is no more." This "Israel" was a cultural and political entity, well enough established for the Egyptians to perceive it as a possible challenge, but an ethnic group rather than an organised state. In the Late Bronze Age there were no more than about 25 villages in the highlands, but this increased to over 300 by the end of Iron Age I, while the settled population doubled from 20,000 to 40,000; the villages were more numerous and larger in the north, shared the highlands with pastoral nomads, who left no remains. Archaeologists and historians attempting to trace the origins of these villagers have found it impossible to identify any distinctive features that could define them as Israelite – collared-rim jars and four-room houses have been identified outside the highlands and thus cannot be used to distinguish Israelite sites, while the pottery of the highland villages is far more limited than that of lowland Canaanite sites, it develops typologically out of Canaanite pottery that came before.

Israel Finkelstein proposed that the oval or circular layout that distinguishes some of the earliest highland sites, the notable absence of pig bones from hill sites, could be taken as markers of ethnicity, but others have cautioned that these can be a "common-sense" adaptation to highland life and not revelatory of origins. Other Aramaean sites demonstrate a contemporary absence of pig remains at that time, unlike earlier Canaanite and Philistine excavations. In The Bible Unearthed (200

DMX (rapper)

Earl Simmons, known professionally as DMX, is an American rapper and actor. He began rapping in the early 1990s, released his debut album, It's Dark and Hell Is Hot in 1998 to both critical acclaim and commercial success, selling 251,000 copies within its first week of release, he released his best-selling album... And Then There Was X, in 1999, which included the hit single "Party Up". Since his debut, DMX has released seven studio albums, he has been featured in films such as Belly, Romeo Must Die, Exit Wounds, Cradle 2 the Grave and Last Hour. In 2006, he starred in the reality television series DMX: Soul of a Man, aired on the BET cable television network. In 2003, DMX published a book of his memoirs entitled, E. A. R. L.: The Autobiography of DMX. Earl Simmons was born in Mount Vernon, New York on December 18, 1970, the son of 19 year old Arnett Simmons and 18 year old Joe Barker, was raised in Yonkers, New York, he has no middle name, was named Earl at birth. Earl was the second child of Arnett, who had given birth to a daughter, two years prior, as well as one daughter and two stillborn sons after Earl.

Barker did not want Simmons to keep her son, cut off all contact with the family as soon as Earl was born. As a child, Simmons suffered from bronchial asthma, being taken to the emergency room nightly due to him waking up unable to breathe, he was brought up in the Jehovah's Witness faith. At some point in his childhood, Simmons was hit by a drunk driver while crossing the street and suffered minor injuries, he claims his family could have received as much as $10,000 in a legal settlement, but his mother refused to open a case as she claimed it went against her faith. Simmons went through a disjointing childhood that included being beaten by his mother and her various boyfriends so badly that he lost teeth, sustained numerous bruises and cuts on his face; when Simmons was 5 years old, his family settled in New York. At the end of the fifth grade, Simmons was kicked out of school and sent to the Julia Dyckman Andrus Children's Home for 18 months; when he was 14, Simmons began wandering the streets of Yonkers to escape his mother's abuse, found comfort in befriending stray dogs that walked the streets at night.

Shortly after he began doing this, his mother once again sent him to a boys' home. During his stay at the boys' home, Simmons bonded with other students from New York over their shared love of hip-hop music, after performing for his friends, they encouraged Simmons to continue writing music to the behest of his teacher; when he returned home, Simmons met Ready Ron, a local rapper, impressed with Simmons' beatboxing skills, asked him to become his partner. Simmons chose the name "DMX", which came from an instrument he had used at the boys' home, the Oberheim DMX drum machine. DMX got his start in the music industry in 1984, when he would beatbox for a local rapper named Ready Ron. After serving time in prison, he began writing his own lyrics and would perform at the local rec center for younger children. After going to prison again in 1988, he began taking rapping more dedicating all of his free time to writing lyrics and meeting and rapping with K-Solo while incarcerated; when he was released that summer, he began producing and selling his own mixtapes where he would rap over instrumentals from other songs and sell them on street corners, which helped him build a local fan base all over New York.

In 1991, Gabriel Grevenstuk from The Source magazine praised DMX in his Unsigned Hype column that highlighted unsigned hip-hop artists. The same year, he recorded Unstoppable Force and Three Little Pigs. In 1992, Columbia Records signed DMX to their subsidiary label Ruffhouse, which released his debut single "Born Loser"; the single did not receive much airplay, the label agreed to release DMX from their contract. He released his second single, "Make a Move" in 1994, made a guest appearance alongside Jay Z, Ja Rule, Mic Geronimo on the classic underground track "Time To Build" on Mic Geronimo's debut album in 1995, he appeared on LL Cool J's single "4, 3, 2, 1" in 1997. Additional guest spots on Mase singles "24 Hrs. to Live" and "Take What's Yours", The LOX's single "Money, Power & Respect" created a strong buzz for the then-unsigned rapper. DMX made a cameo appearance in the Sum 41 music video for "Makes No Difference". In February 1998, DMX released "Get at Me Dog", on Def Jam; the single was certified Gold by the RIAA.

His first major-label album, It's Dark and Hell Is Hot, which included the single "Ruff Ryders Anthem", was released in May 1998. The album debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart in the U. S and sold over five million copies; that year in December, DMX released his second album, Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood. It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. Within one week of the album's release, 670,000 units were shipped, it was certified Platinum four times. DMX released his third and best-selling album... And Then There Was X, on December 21, 1999, it was his third album to debut at number one on the Billboard 200. Its most popular single, "Party Up", became his first Top Ten hit on the R&B charts. Singles "What's My Name?" and "What These Bitches Want" were popular. The album was certified six-times Platinum. After improving his legal situation, DMX returned to the studio to complete his fourth album, The Great Depression. Released October 23, 2001, it was his fourth album to debut at number one on the Billboard 200, featuring the singles "Who We

Alice Owen

Alice Owen was an English philanthropist. Owen was born in 1547 to his wife, she had a sister Mary whose daughter, Anne Bedingfeild, was a benefactor. In her childhood, when in the fields at Islington, ‘sporting with other children,’ she had a narrow escape of being killed by an arrow, shot by some unlucky archer, which ‘pierced quite thorow the hat on her head.’ For this providential escape she recorded her gratitude in life by the erection of a school and almshouses on the spot. The story appeared in this form within five years of her death, in the second edition of Stow's'Surray,' published in 1618. On it received many embellishments. Alice Wilkes was three times married: to Henry Robinson, a member of the Brewers' Company, by whom she had six sons and five daughters, it is as the widow of Mr. Justice Owen that she is styled Dame Alice Owen, or Lady Owen. Alice Owen died 26 October 1613, was buried in the parish church of St Mary's Church, where a monument preserved her effigy and those of her children till 1751, when, on the pulling down of the old fabric, part of the monument was removed to the school, a fresh one erected to her memory in the new church.

By the death of her third husband, 21 December 1598, Mistress Owen was left free to carry out her long-cherished plans. On 6 June 1608, she obtained licence to purchase at Islington and Clerkenwell eleven acres of ground, whereon to erect a hospital for ten poor widows, to vest the same and other lands, to the value of £40 a year, in the Brewers' Company; the site had been known as the'Ermytage' field. Here she erected a school, free chapel, almshouses, on the east side of St. John Street Road, which stood till 1841. In one of the gables three iron arrows were fixed, as a memorial of the childhood event described. By indentures dated in 1609, she gave to the Brewers' Company a yearly rent-charge of £25, in support of her almshouses. On 20 September 1613, she made orders for her new school, she had by her will, dated 10 June 1613, directed the purchase of land to the amount of £20 a year for the maintenance of its master. She made many other bequests to Christ's Hospital and the two universities of Oxford and Cambridge.

By 1830, the value of the trust estates in Islington and Clerkenwell had grown to £900 a year. In 1841, the school and almshouses were rebuilt, at a cost of about £6,000, on a new site in Owen Street, Islington, a little distance from the old. On 14 August 1878, a new scheme obtained the royal assent, by which the school of Alice Owen was expanded into two — one for about three hundred boys, the other for the like number of girls. Attribution This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Lupton, Joseph Hirst. "Owen, Alice". In Lee, Sidney. Dictionary of National Biography. 42. London: Smith, Elder & Co


Tavisupleba is the national anthem of Georgia. It was adopted as the Georgian national anthem in May 2004, along with a new national flag and coat of arms; the symbols' change was brought about upon the successful overthrow of the previous government in the bloodless Rose Revolution. The music, taken from the Georgian operas Abesalom da Eteri and Daisi, by the Georgian composer Zacharia Paliashvili, was adapted to form it by Ioseb Kechakmadze; the lyrics were composed by David Magradze. The current Georgian national anthem was adopted by the Parliament of Georgia on May 20, 2004 5 months after the resignation of President Eduard Shevardnadze in the Rose Revolution. A bill was introduced in the first plenary meeting of the 6th convocation of the Georgian Parliament on April 22, 2004; the bill to adopt "Tavisupleba" as Georgia's national anthem was presented by the Minister of Culture Giorgi Gabashvili. The law refers to the corresponding Presidential Decree. "Tavisupleba" succeeded the old national anthem "Dideba", in use by the Democratic Republic of Georgia from 1918 to 1921, again by the newly independent Georgia from 1990 to 2004.

The new national anthem gained popularity in contrast to its predecessor, whose lyrics were somewhat archaic and difficult to memorize. During U. S. President George W. Bush's visit to Georgia in May 2005, he along with President Mikheil Saakashvili was addressing tens of thousands of Georgians in Freedom Square in Tbilisi when a recording of "Tavisupleba" failed to play properly. Saakashvili motioned to the choirs, thousands in the crowd joined the singers in singing it, a moment, described by media as "the most powerful moment of the day"; the music of "Tavisupleba" was adapted from two Georgian operas, Abesalom da Eteri and Daisi, composed by Zacharia Paliashvili, the father of the Georgian classical music genre. A version of the song is sung in Abkhazian, as it is an official language of the Abkhazian AR. Ашәа азаҳҳәоит ҳныха, ҳаҧсадгьыл Иҳазгәакьоу, иҧшьоу ҳтәыла. Мрала ирлашоул ҳа ҳадгьыл, Уи азоул изахьӡу амратәыла. Иахьа иҳамоу ахақәиҭра Ашәа азаҳҳәоит гәырӷьа бжьыла, Аеҵәа ҩ-мшынк рыбжьара Икаҧхоит Анцәа имч ала, Иныҳәазааит ахақәиҭра, Ахақәиҭра амч-алша.

According to the Regulations for the Parliament of Georgia, Chapter 3, Article 4.5. The national anthem of Georgia is played at the closing of each session, it is performed following the signing of the Oath of the Parliamentarian after the Parliament recognizes the authority of at least two-third of its newly elected members. The anthem is played prior to the annual report of the President of Georgia to the Parliament. Georgian Public Broadcaster airs a music video version of the anthem, featuring opera singer Paata Burchuladze. Parliament of Georgia Lyrics President of Georgia Lyrics and media Georgia: Tavisupleba - Audio of the national anthem of Georgia, with information and lyrics "Tavisupleba: The Georgian National Anthem," From the Cradle of Wine Sheet music - SATB and Piano score of Tavisupleba on IMSLP

Arctotheca calendula

Arctotheca calendula is a plant in the sunflower family known as capeweed, plain treasureflower, cape dandelion, or cape marigold because it originates from the Cape Province in South Africa. It is found in neighboring KwaZulu-Natal. Arctotheca calendula is naturalized in California, Portugal, Italy and New Zealand, considered a noxious weed in some of those places. Arctotheca calendula is a squat perennial or annual which grows in rosettes and sends out stolons and can spread across the ground quickly; the leaves are covered with white woolly hairs on their undersides. The leaves are lobed or toothed. Hairy stems bear daisy-like flowers with small yellow petals that sometimes have a green or purple tint surrounded by white or yellow ray petals extending further out from the flower centers, it is cultivated as an attractive ornamental groundcover but has invasive potential when introduced to a new area. The plant can reproduce vegetatively or via seed. Seed-bearing plants are most to become weedy, taking hold most in bare or sparsely vegetated soil or disturbed areas.

Media related to Arctotheca calendula at Wikimedia Commons Jepson Manual Treatment New South Wales Flora Herbigude, Capeweed photograph, capeweed description and capeweed diagram from HerbiGuide. Capeweed at EncycloWeedia Invasive Plants of California's Wildlands Queensland Government Factsheet

Woodleigh School, Melbourne

Woodleigh School is an independent, co-educational, K-12 day school located in the Melbourne suburb of Langwarrin South, Australia. It has two junior campuses, its senior campus, "Woodleigh", is located in Langwarrin South. Woodleigh School was founded in 1856 as the St. Paul's School, operated out of a hall on the grounds of St. Paul's Anglican Church in Frankston, it was the first school in Frankston, as well as one of the earliest in the colony of Victoria, is the oldest co-educational school in the state of Victoria. In 1970, the school moved to a 3.5 ha property off Seaview Road in Frankston South which it named "Minimbah" – the Bunurong aboriginal word for "place of learning". In 1975, it purchased the former 12.5 ha farm "Woodleigh" on Golf Links Road in Langwarrin South. During this time, the Minimbah site became the junior campus and the Woodleigh site became the senior campus of the school. After acquiring further land at its Woodleigh site, creating a 22 ha campus, the school changed its name to Woodleigh School in 1999