Lyceum Theatre, London
The Lyceum Theatre is a 2,100-seat West End theatre located in the City of Westminster, on Wellington Street, just off the Strand. The origins of the theatre date to 1765. Managed by Samuel Arnold, from 1794 to 1809 the building hosted a variety of entertainments including a circus produced by Philip Astley, a chapel, the first London exhibition of waxworks displayed by Madame Tussaud. From 1816 to 1830, it served as The English Opera House. After a fire, the house was reopened on 14 July 1834 to a design by Samuel Beazley; the building was unique in. It was built by the partnership of Grissell; the theatre played opera, adaptations of Charles Dickens novels and James Planché's "fairy extravaganzas", among other works. From 1871 to 1902, Henry Irving appeared at the theatre in Shakespeare starring opposite Ellen Terry. In 1904 the theatre was completely rebuilt and richly ornamented in Rococo style by Bertie Crewe, but it retained Beazley's façade and grand portico, it played melodrama over the ensuing decades.
The building closed in 1939 and was set to be demolished, but it was saved and converted into a Mecca Ballroom in 1951, styled the Lyceum Ballroom, where many well-known bands played. The Lyceum was restored to theatrical use in 1996 by Holohan Architects. Since 1999, the theatre has hosted The Lion King. In 1765, a building was erected on an adjacent site by the architect James Payne for the exhibitions of The Society of Artists, which disbanded three years when the Royal Academy of Arts succeeded it; the building was leased out for dances and other entertainments, including musical entertainments by Charles Dibdin. Famed actor David Garrick performed there. In 1794, the composer Samuel Arnold Sr rebuilt the interior of the building, making it into a proper theatre, but through the opposition of the existing patent theatres, he was not granted a patent. Therefore, he leased it to other entertainments again, including Philip Astley, who brought his circus there when his amphitheatre was burned down at Westminster.
It was used as a chapel, a concert room, for the first London exhibition of waxworks displayed by Madame Tussauds in 1802. The theatre became a licensed house in 1809, until 1812 it was used for dramatic performances by the Drury Lane Company after the burning of their own theatre, until the erection of the new edifice, it staged one of the earliest tableaux vivants, as part of William Dimond's The Peasant Boy in 1811. In 1816, Samuel Arnold rebuilt the house to a design by Beazley and opened it as The English Opera House, but it was destroyed by fire in 1830; the house was famous for hosting the London première of Mozart's opera Così fan tutte and as the first theatre in Britain to have its stage lit by gas. During this period, the "Sublime Society of Beef Steaks,", founded in 1735 by theatre manager Henry Rich, had its home at the theatre for over 50 years until 1867; the members, who never exceeded twenty-four in number, met every Saturday night to eat beefsteaks and drink port wine. In 1834, the present house opened to the west, with a frontage on Wellington Street, under the name Theatre Royal Lyceum and English Opera House.
The theatre was again designed by Beazley and cost £40,000. The new house championed English opera rather than the Italian operas that had played earlier in the century. Composer John Barnett produced a number of works in the first few years of the theatre, including The Mountain Sylph, credited as the first modern English opera, it was followed by Fair Rosamund in 1837 and Farinelli in 1839, Blanche of Jersey here in 1840. In 1841–43, composer Michael William Balfe managed the theatre and produced National Opera here, but the venture was unsuccessful. From 1844 to 1847 the theatre was managed by husband and wife team Robert Keeley and Mary Anne Keeley, during which period the house became associated with adaptations of Charles Dickens's novels and Christmas books. For instance, an adaptation of Dickens' Martin Chuzzlewit ran for over 100 performances from 1844–45 here, a long run for the time; the Lyceum was managed by Madame Lucia Elizabeth Vestris and Charles James Mathews from 1847–55, who produced James Planché's " extravaganzas" featuring spectacular stage effects.
Their first big success was Cox. Tom Taylor's adaptation of A Tale of Two Cities, with Dickens himself as consultant, played in 1860, shortly after end of its serialisation and volume publication. Charles Fechter, who managed the theatre from 1863–67 favored spectacular productions. In 1866, Dion Boucicault's The Long Strike was produced here. Ethel Lavenu, the mother and grandmother of actors Tyrone Power, Sr. and Tyrone Power performed in a number pieces at the theatre in the 1860s. W. S. Gilbert produced three plays here. In 1863, his first professional play, Uncle Baby, premièred. In 1867, he presented his Christmas pantomime, called Harlequin Cock Robin and Jenny Wren, in 1884, he produced the drama Comedy and Tragedy. In 1889, the world's finest Italian dramatic tenor, Francesco Tamagno, appeared at the Lyceum, singing the leading role in the first London production of Giuseppe Verdi's opera Otello. Beginning in 1871, under manager Hezekiah Linthicum Bateman and his wife, Henry Irving appeared at the theatre in, among other things, many Shakespeare works.
Irving began with the French melodrama The Bells, an instant hit in which he played the ghost-haunted burgomaster. The piece ran to sell-out crowds for 150 nights, which was
Jean-Paul Marat was a French political theorist and scientist. He was a politician during the French Revolution, he seen as a radical voice. He published his views in pamphlets and newspapers, his periodical L'Ami du peuple made him an unofficial link with the radical republican Jacobin group that came to power after June 1793. Through his journalism, renowned for its fierce tone, advocacy of basic human rights for the poorest members of society, uncompromising stance towards the new leaders and institutions of the revolution, he called for prisoners of the Revolution to be killed before they could be freed in the September Massacres. Marat was assassinated by Charlotte Corday, a Girondin sympathizer, while taking a medicinal bath for his debilitating skin condition. Corday was executed four days for his assassination, on 17 July 1793. In death, Marat became an icon to the Jacobins as a revolutionary martyr, he is portrayed in The Death of Marat. Jean-Paul Marat was born in Boudry, in the Prussian Principality of Neuchâtel on 24 May 1743.
He was the second of nine children born to Jean Mara, a native of Cagliari and Louise Cabrol, a French Huguenot from Castres. His father was religious refugee. Marat left home in search of new opportunities, he was aware of the limited opportunities for those seen as outsiders as his educated father had been turned down for several college teaching posts. At the age of seventeen he applied to join the expedition of Jean-Baptiste Chappe d'Auteroche, a journey to Tobolsk to measure the transit of Venus, he was turned down. His first patronage was fulfilled with the wealthy Nairac family in Bordeaux, where he stayed for two years, he moved to Paris and studied medicine, without gaining any formal qualifications. He worked, informally, as a doctor after moving to London in 1765 due to a fear of being "drawn into dissipation," In London Marat befriended the Royal Academician artist Angelica Kauffman, his social circle included Italian architects who met in coffee houses around Soho. Ambitious, but without patronage or qualifications, he set about inserting himself into the intellectual scene.
Around 1770, Marat moved to Newcastle upon Tyne. His first political work, Chains of Slavery, inspired by the extra-parliamentary activities of the disenfranchised MP and Mayor of London John Wilkes, was most compiled in the central library there. By Marat's own colourful account, he lived on black coffee for three months, during its composition, sleeping only two hours a night, after finishing, sleeping soundly for thirteen days in a row, he gave it the subtitle, "A work in which the clandestine and villainous attempts of Princes to ruin Liberty are pointed out, the dreadful scenes of Despotism disclosed." This work earned him honorary membership of the patriotic societies of Berwick-upon-Tweed and Newcastle. The Newcastle Literary and Philosophical Society Library possesses a copy, Tyne and Wear Archives Service holds three presented to the various Newcastle guilds. Marat published "A philosophical Essay on Man," in 1773 and political theory "Chains of Slavery," in 1774. Marat's growing sense of a widening gulf between the philosophes, grouped around Voltaire on one hand, their "opponents," loosely grouped around Rousseau on the other.
Voltaire's sharp critique of "De l'Homme" in defence of his protégé Helvétius, reinforced After a published essay on curing a friend of gleets he secured medical referees for an MD from the University of St Andrews in June 1775. He published Enquiry into the Nature and Cure of a Singular Disease of the Eyes on his return to London. In 1776, Marat moved to Paris following a brief stopover in Geneva to visit his family. In Paris, his growing reputation as a effective doctor along with the patronage of the Marquis de l'Aubespine secured his appointment as physician to the bodyguard of the comte d'Artois, Louis XVI's youngest brother, to become king Charles X in 1824, he began this position in June 1777. The position paid 2,000 livres a year plus allowances. Marat set up a laboratory in the marquise de l'Aubespine's house with funds obtained by serving as court doctor among the aristocracy, his method was to describe in detail the meticulous series of experiments he had undertaken on a problem, seeking to explore and exclude all possible conclusions but the one he reached.
He published works on fire and heat and light. He published a summary of his scientific views and discoveries in Découvertes de M. Marat sur le feu, l'électricité et la lumière in 1779, he published three more extensive works that expanded on each of his areas of research. The first of Marat's large-scale publications detailing his experiments and drawing conclusions from them was Recherches Physiques sur le Feu, published in 1780 with the approval of the official censors; this publication describes 166 experiments conducted to demonstrate that fire was not, as was held, a material element but an "igneous fluid." He asked the Academy of Sciences to appraise his work, it appointed a commission to do so, which reported in April 1779. The report avoided endorsing Marat's conclusions but did speak of his "new and well-executed experiments, appropr
Palace of Versailles
The Palace of Versailles was the principal royal residence of France from 1682, under Louis XIV, until the start of the French Revolution in 1789, under Louis XVI. It is located in the department of Yvelines, in the region of Île-de-France, about 20 kilometres southwest of the centre of Paris; the palace is now a Monument historique and UNESCO World Heritage site, notable for the ceremonial Hall of Mirrors, the jewel-like Royal Opera, the royal apartments. The Palace was stripped of all its furnishings after the French Revolution, but many pieces have been returned and many of the palace rooms have been restored. In 2017 the Palace of Versailles received 7,700,000 visitors, making it the second-most visited monument in the Île-de-France region, just behind the Louvre and ahead of the Eiffel Tower; the site of the Palace was first occupied by a small village and church, surrounded by forests filled with abundant game. It was owned by the priory of Saint Julian. King Henry IV went hunting there in 1589, returned in 1604 and 1609, staying in the village inn.
His son, the future Louis XIII, came on his own hunting trip there in 1607. After he became King in 1610, Louis XIII returned to the village, bought some land, in 1623-24 built a modest two-story hunting lodge on the site of the current marble courtyard, he was staying there in November 1630 during the event known as the Day of the Dupes, when the enemies of the King's chief minister, Cardinal Richelieu, aided by the King's mother, Marie de' Medici, tried to take over the government. The King sent his mother into exile. After this event, Louis XIII decided to make his hunting lodge at Versailles into a château; the King purchased the surrounding territory from the Gondi family, in 1631–1634 had the architect Philibert Le Roy replace the hunting lodge with a château of brick and stone with classical pilasters in the doric style and high slate-covered roofs, surrounding the courtyard of the original hunting lodge. The gardens and park were enlarged, laid out by Jacques Boyceau and his nephew, Jacques de Menours, reached the size they have today.
Louis XIV first visited the château on a hunting trip in 1651 at the age of twelve, but returned only until his marriage to Maria Theresa of Spain in 1660 and the death of Cardinal Mazarin in 1661, after which he acquired a passion for the site. He decided to rebuild and enlarge the château and to transform it into a setting for both rest and for elaborate entertainments on a grand scale; the first phase of the expansion was supervised by the architect Louis Le Vau. He added two wings to the forecourt, one for servants quarters and kitchens, the other for stables. In 1668 he added three new wings built of stone, known as the envelope, to the north and west of the original château; these buildings had nearly-flat roofs covered with lead. The king commissioned the landscape designer André Le Nôtre to create the most magnificent gardens in Europe, embellished with fountains, basins, geometric flower beds and groves of trees, he added two grottos in the Italian style and an immense orangerie to house fruit trees, as well as a zoo with a central pavilion for exotic animals.
After Le Vau's death in 1670, the work was taken over and completed by his assistant François d'Orbay. The main floor of the new palace contained two symmetrical sets of apartments, one for the king and the other for the queen, looking over the gardens; the two apartments were separated by a marble terrace, overlooking the garden, with a fountain in the center. Each set of apartments was connected to the ground floor with a ceremonial stairway, each had seven rooms, aligned in a row. On the ground floor under the King's apartment was another apartment, the same size, designed for his private life, decorated on the theme of Apollo, the Sun god, his personal emblem. Under the Queen's apartment was the apartment of the Grand Dauphin, the heir to the throne; the interior decoration was assigned to Charles Le Brun. Le Brun supervised the work of a large group of sculptors and painters, called the Petite Academie, who crafted and painted the ornate walls and ceilings. Le Brun supervised the design and installation of countless statues in the gardens.
The grand stairway to the King's apartment was soon redecorated as soon as it was completed with plaques of colored marble and trophies of arms and balconies, so the members of the court could observe the processions of the King. In 1670, Le Vau added a new pavilion northwest of the chateau, called the Trianon, for the King's relaxation in the hot summers, it was surrounded by flowerbeds and decorated with blue and white porcelain, in imitation of the Chinese style. The King spent his days in Versailles, the government and courtiers, numbering six to seven thousand persons, crowded into the buildings; the King ordered a further enlargement, which he entrusted to the young architect Jules Hardouin-Mansart. Hadouin-Mansart added two large new wings on either side of the original Cour Royale, he replaced Le Vau's large terrace, facing the garden on the west, with what bec
Marie Antoinette was the last Queen of France before the French Revolution. She was born an Archduchess of Austria and was the penultimate child and youngest daughter of Empress Maria Theresa and Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor, she became Dauphine of France in May 1770 at age 14 upon her marriage to Louis-Auguste, heir apparent to the French throne. On 10 May 1774, her husband ascended the throne as Louis XVI and she assumed the title Queen of France and Navarre, which she held until September 1791, when she became Queen of the French as the French Revolution proceeded, a title that she held until 21 September 1792. After eight years of marriage, Marie Antoinette gave birth to Marie Thérèse, the first of her four children. A growing percentage of the population came to dislike her, accusing her of being profligate and promiscuous and of harboring sympathies for France's enemies her native Austria; the Affair of the Diamond Necklace damaged her reputation further. During the Revolution, she became known as Madame Déficit because the country's financial crisis was blamed on her lavish spending and her opposition to the social and financial reforms of Turgot and Necker.
Several events were linked to Marie Antoinette during the Revolution after the government had placed the royal family under house arrest in the Tuileries Palace in October 1789. The June 1791 attempted flight to Varennes and her role in the War of the First Coalition had disastrous effects on French popular opinion. On 10 August 1792, the attack on the Tuileries forced the royal family to take refuge at the Assembly, they were imprisoned in the Temple Prison on 13 August. On 21 September 1792, the monarchy was abolished, her trial began on 14 October 1793, two days Marie Antoinette was convicted by the Revolutionary Tribunal of high treason and executed by guillotine on the Place de la Révolution. Maria Antonia was born on 2 November 1755 at the Hofburg Palace in Austria, she was the youngest daughter of Empress Maria Theresa, ruler of the Habsburg Empire, her husband Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor. Her godparents were Joseph I and Mariana Victoria and Queen of Portugal. Maria Antonia was born on All Souls Day, a day when Catholics mourned their dead, everything was black.
Therefore, it would make sense during her childhood to celebrate her birthday on the eve of it, All Saints Day, where everything was white and gold. Shortly after her birth she was placed under the care of the governess of the imperial children, Countess von Brandeis. Maria Antonia was raised together with her sister, Maria Carolina, three years older, with whom she had a lifelong close relationship. Maria Antonia had a difficult but loving relationship with her mother, who referred to her as "the little Madame Antoine". Maria Antonia spent her formative years between the Hofburg Palace and Schönbrunn, the imperial summer residence in Vienna, where on 13 October 1762, when she was seven, she met Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, two months her junior and a child prodigy. Despite the private tutoring she received, the results of her schooling were less than satisfactory. At the age of 10 she could not write in German or in any language used at court, such as French or Italian, conversations with her were stilted.
Under the teaching of Christoph Willibald Gluck, Maria Antonia developed into a good musician. She learned to play the harpsichord and the flute, she sang during the family's evening gatherings. She excelled at dancing, had "exquisite" poise, loved dolls. Following the Seven Years' War and the Diplomatic Revolution of 1756, Empress Maria Theresa decided to end hostilities with her longtime enemy, King Louis XV of France, their common desire to destroy the ambitions of Prussia and Great Britain and to secure a definitive peace between their respective countries led them to seal their alliance with a marriage: on 7 February 1770, Louis XV formally requested the hand of Maria Antonia for his eldest surviving grandson and heir, Louis-Auguste, Duke of Berry and Dauphin of France. Maria Antonia formally renounced her rights to Habsburg domains, on 19 April she was married by proxy to the Dauphin of France at the Augustinian Church in Vienna, with her brother Archduke Ferdinand standing in for the Dauphin.
On 14 May she met her husband at the edge of the forest of Compiègne. Upon her arrival in France, she adopted the French version of her name: Marie Antoinette. A further ceremonial wedding took place on 16 May 1770 in the Palace of Versailles and, after the festivities, the day ended with the ritual bedding; the couple's longtime failure to consummate the marriage plagued the reputations of both Louis-Auguste and Marie Antoinette for the next seven years. The initial reaction to the marriage between Marie Antoinette and Louis-Auguste was mixed. On the one hand, the Dauphine was beautiful and well-liked by the common people, her first official appearance in Paris on 8 June 1773 was a resounding success. On the other hand, those opposed to the alliance with Austria had a difficult relationship with Marie Antoinette, as did others who disliked her for more personal or petty reasons. Madame du Barry proved a troublesome foe to the new dauphine, she had considerable political influence over him. In 1770 she was instrumental in ousting Étienne François, duc de Choiseul, who had helped orchestrate the Franco-Austrian alliance and Marie Antoinette's marriage, in exiling his sister, the duchesse de Gramont, one of Marie Antoinette's ladies-in-waiting.
Marie Antoinette was persuaded by
Kingdom of France
The Kingdom of France was a medieval and early modern monarchy in Western Europe. It was one of the most powerful states in Europe and a great power since the Late Middle Ages and the Hundred Years' War, it was an early colonial power, with possessions around the world. France originated as West Francia, the western half of the Carolingian Empire, with the Treaty of Verdun. A branch of the Carolingian dynasty continued to rule until 987, when Hugh Capet was elected king and founded the Capetian dynasty; the territory remained known as Francia and its ruler as rex Francorum well into the High Middle Ages. The first king calling himself Roi de France was Philip II, in 1190. France continued to be ruled by the Capetians and their cadet lines—the Valois and Bourbon—until the monarchy was overthrown in 1792 during the French Revolution. France in the Middle Ages was a feudal monarchy. In Brittany and Catalonia the authority of the French king was felt. Lorraine and Provence were states of the Holy Roman Empire and not yet a part of France.
West Frankish kings were elected by the secular and ecclesiastic magnates, but the regular coronation of the eldest son of the reigning king during his father's lifetime established the principle of male primogeniture, which became codified in the Salic law. During the Late Middle Ages, the Kings of England laid claim to the French throne, resulting in a series of conflicts known as the Hundred Years' War. Subsequently, France sought to extend its influence into Italy, but was defeated by Spain in the ensuing Italian Wars. France in the early modern era was centralised. Religiously France became divided between the Catholic majority and a Protestant minority, the Huguenots, which led to a series of civil wars, the Wars of Religion. France laid claim to large stretches of North America, known collectively as New France. Wars with Great Britain led to the loss of much of this territory by 1763. French intervention in the American Revolutionary War helped secure the independence of the new United States of America but was costly and achieved little for France.
The Kingdom of France adopted a written constitution in 1791, but the Kingdom was abolished a year and replaced with the First French Republic. The monarchy was restored by the other great powers in 1814 and lasted until the French Revolution of 1848. During the years of the elderly Charlemagne's rule, the Vikings made advances along the northern and western perimeters of the Kingdom of the Franks. After Charlemagne's death in 814 his heirs were incapable of maintaining political unity and the empire began to crumble; the Treaty of Verdun of 843 divided the Carolingian Empire into three parts, with Charles the Bald ruling over West Francia, the nucleus of what would develop into the kingdom of France. Charles the Bald was crowned King of Lotharingia after the death of Lothair II in 869, but in the Treaty of Meerssen was forced to cede much of Lotharingia to his brothers, retaining the Rhone and Meuse basins but leaving the Rhineland with Aachen and Trier in East Francia. Viking advances were allowed to increase, their dreaded longships were sailing up the Loire and Seine rivers and other inland waterways, wreaking havoc and spreading terror.
During the reign of Charles the Simple, Normans under Rollo from Norway, were settled in an area on either side of the River Seine, downstream from Paris, to become Normandy. The Carolingians were to share the fate of their predecessors: after an intermittent power struggle between the two dynasties, the accession in 987 of Hugh Capet, Duke of France and Count of Paris, established the Capetian dynasty on the throne. With its offshoots, the houses of Valois and Bourbon, it was to rule France for more than 800 years; the old order left the new dynasty in immediate control of little beyond the middle Seine and adjacent territories, while powerful territorial lords such as the 10th- and 11th-century counts of Blois accumulated large domains of their own through marriage and through private arrangements with lesser nobles for protection and support. The area around the lower Seine became a source of particular concern when Duke William took possession of the kingdom of England by the Norman Conquest of 1066, making himself and his heirs the King's equal outside France.
Henry II inherited the Duchy of Normandy and the County of Anjou, married France's newly divorced ex-queen, Eleanor of Aquitaine, who ruled much of southwest France, in 1152. After defeating a revolt led by Eleanor and three of their four sons, Henry had Eleanor imprisoned, made the Duke of Brittany his vassal, in effect ruled the western half of France as a greater power than the French throne. However, disputes among Henry's descendants over the division of his French territories, coupled with John of England's lengthy quarrel with Philip II, allowed Philip II to recover influence over most of this territory. After the French victory at the Battle of Bouvines in 1214, the English monarchs maintained power only in southwestern Duchy of Guyenne; the death of Charles IV of France in 1328 without male heirs ended the main Capetian line. Under Salic law the crown could not pass through a woman (Philip IV's daughter
A death mask is a likeness of a person's face following death made by taking a cast or impression directly from the corpse. Death masks may be used for creation of portraits; such casts obviate idealised representations by revealing the actual features. It is sometimes possible to identify portraits that have been painted from death masks, because of the characteristic slight distortions of the features caused by the weight of the plaster during the making of the mold; the main purpose of the death mask from the Middle Ages until the 19th century was to serve as a model for sculptors in creating statues and busts of the deceased person. Not until the 1800s did such masks become valued for themselves. In other cultures a death mask may be a funeral mask, an image placed on the face of the deceased before burial rites, buried with them; the best known of these are the masks used in ancient Egypt as part of the mummification process, such as Tutankhamun's mask, those from Mycenaean Greece such as the Mask of Agamemnon.
In some European countries, it was common for death masks to be used as part of the effigy of the deceased, displayed at state funerals. Mourning portraits were painted, showing the subject lying in repose. During the 18th and 19th centuries masks were used to permanently record the features of unknown corpses for purposes of identification; this function was replaced by post-mortem photography. In the cases of people whose faces were damaged by their death, it was common to take casts of their hands. An example of this occurred in the case of Thomas D'Arcy McGee, the Canadian statesman whose face was shattered by the bullet which assassinated him in 1868; when taken from a living subject, such a cast is called a life mask. Proponents of phrenology used both death masks and life masks for pseudoscientific purposes. Masks of deceased persons are part of traditions in many countries; the most important process of the funeral ceremony in ancient Egypt was the mummification of the body, after prayers and consecration, was put into a sarcophagus enameled and decorated with gold and gems.
A special element of the rite was a sculpted mask, put on the face of the deceased. This mask was believed to strengthen the spirit of the mummy and guard the soul from evil spirits on its way to the afterworld; the best known mask is Tutankhamun's mask. Made of gold and gems, the mask conveys the stylized features of the ancient ruler; such masks were not, made from casts of the features. In 1876 the archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann discovered in Mycenae six graves, which he was confident belonged to kings and ancient Greek heroes—Agamemnon, Cassandra and their associates. To his surprise, the skulls were covered with gold masks, it is now thought most unlikely that the masks belonged to Agamemnon and other heroes of the Homeric epics. The lifelike character of Roman portrait sculptures has been attributed to the earlier Roman use of wax to preserve the features of deceased family members; the wax masks were subsequently reproduced in more durable stone. The use of masks in the ancestor cult is attested in Etruria.
Excavations of tombs in the area of the ancient city of Clusium have yielded a number of sheet bronze masks dating from the Etruscan Late Orientalising period. In the 19th century it was thought that they were related to the Mycenaean examples, but whether they served as actual death masks cannot be proven; the most credited hypothesis holds that they were fixed to cinerary urns, to give them a human appearance. In Orientalising Clusium, the anthropomorphization of urns was a prevalent phenomenon, rooted in local religious beliefs. In the late Middle Ages, a shift took place from sculpted masks to true death masks, made of wax or plaster; these masks were not interred with the deceased. Instead, they were used in funeral ceremonies and were kept in libraries and universities. Death masks were taken not only of deceased royalty and nobility, but of eminent persons—composers, dramaturges and political leaders, philosophers and scientists, such as Dante Alighieri, Ludwig van Beethoven, Napoleon Bonaparte, Filippo Brunelleschi, Frédéric Chopin, Oliver Cromwell, Joseph Haydn, John Keats, Franz Liszt, Blaise Pascal, Nikola Tesla, Torquato Tasso, Voltaire.
As in ancient Rome, death masks were subsequently used in making marble sculpture portraits, busts, or engravings of the deceased. In Russia, the death mask tradition dates back to the times of Peter the Great, whose death mask was taken by Carlo Bartolomeo Rastrelli. Well known are the death masks of Nicholas I, Alexander I. Stalin's death mask is on display at the Stalin Museum in Georgia. One of the first real Ukrainian death masks was that of the poet Taras Shevchenko, taken by Peter Clodt von Jürgensburg in St. Petersburg, Russia. In early spring of 1860 and shortly before his death in April 1865, two life masks were created of President Abraham Lincoln. Death masks were used by scientists from the late 18th century onwards to record variations in human physiognomy; the life mask was increasingly common at this time, taken from living persons. Anthropologists used such masks to study physiognomic features in famous people and notorious criminals. M
London is the capital and largest city of both England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans; the City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of the London Assembly. London is considered to be one of the world's most important global cities and has been termed the world's most powerful, most desirable, most influential, most visited, most expensive, sustainable, most investment friendly, most popular for work, the most vegetarian friendly city in the world. London exerts a considerable impact upon the arts, education, fashion, healthcare, professional services and development, tourism and transportation.
London ranks 26 out of 300 major cities for economic performance. It is one of the largest financial centres and has either the fifth or sixth largest metropolitan area GDP, it is the most-visited city as measured by international arrivals and has the busiest city airport system as measured by passenger traffic. It is the leading investment destination, hosting more international retailers and ultra high-net-worth individuals than any other city. London's universities form the largest concentration of higher education institutes in Europe. In 2012, London became the first city to have hosted three modern Summer Olympic Games. London has a diverse range of people and cultures, more than 300 languages are spoken in the region, its estimated mid-2016 municipal population was 8,787,892, the most populous of any city in the European Union and accounting for 13.4% of the UK population. London's urban area is the second most populous in the EU, after Paris, with 9,787,426 inhabitants at the 2011 census.
The population within the London commuter belt is the most populous in the EU with 14,040,163 inhabitants in 2016. London was the world's most populous city from c. 1831 to 1925. London contains four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London. Other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Paul's Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square and The Shard. London has numerous museums, galleries and sporting events; these include the British Museum, National Gallery, Natural History Museum, Tate Modern, British Library and West End theatres. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world. "London" is an ancient name, attested in the first century AD in the Latinised form Londinium. Over the years, the name has attracted many mythicising explanations; the earliest attested appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae, written around 1136. This had it that the name originated from a supposed King Lud, who had taken over the city and named it Kaerlud.
Modern scientific analyses of the name must account for the origins of the different forms found in early sources Latin, Old English, Welsh, with reference to the known developments over time of sounds in those different languages. It is agreed; this was adapted into Latin as Londinium and borrowed into Old English, the ancestor-language of English. The toponymy of the Common Brythonic form is much debated. A prominent explanation was Richard Coates's 1998 argument that the name derived from pre-Celtic Old European *lowonida, meaning "river too wide to ford". Coates suggested that this was a name given to the part of the River Thames which flows through London. However, most work has accepted a Celtic origin for the name, recent studies have favoured an explanation along the lines of a Celtic derivative of a proto-Indo-European root *lendh-, combined with the Celtic suffix *-injo- or *-onjo-. Peter Schrijver has suggested, on these grounds, that the name meant'place that floods'; until 1889, the name "London" applied to the City of London, but since it has referred to the County of London and Greater London.
"London" is sometimes written informally as "LDN". In 1993, the remains of a Bronze Age bridge were found on the south foreshore, upstream of Vauxhall Bridge; this bridge either reached a now lost island in it. Two of those timbers were radiocarbon dated to between 1750 BC and 1285 BC. In 2010 the foundations of a large timber structure, dated to between 4800 BC and 4500 BC, were found on the Thames's south foreshore, downstream of Vauxhall Bridge; the function of the mesolithic structure is not known. Both structures are on the south bank. Although there is evidence of scattered Brythonic settlements in the area, the first major settlement was founded by the Romans about four years after the invasion