University of Warsaw
The University of Warsaw, established in 1816, is the largest university in Poland. It employs over 6,000 staff including over 3,100 academic educators, it provides graduate courses for 53,000 students. The University offers some 37 different fields of study, 18 faculties and over 100 specializations in Humanities, technical as well as Natural Sciences, it was founded as a Royal University on 19 November 1816, when the Partitions of Poland separated Warsaw from the oldest and most influential University of Kraków. Alexander I granted permission for the establishment of five faculties – law and political science, philosophy and the humanities; the university expanded but was closed during November Uprising in 1830. It was reopened in 1857 as the Warsaw Academy of Medicine, now based in the nearby Staszic Palace with only medical and pharmaceutical faculties. All Polish-language campuses were closed in 1869 after the failed January Uprising, but the university managed to train 3,000 students, many of whom were important part of the Polish intelligentsia.
The university was resurrected during the First World War and the number of students reached 4,500 in 1918. After Poland's independence the new government focused on improving the university, in the early 1930s it became the country's largest. New faculties were established and the curriculum was extended. Following the Second World War and the devastation of Warsaw, the University reopened in 1945. Today, the University of Warsaw consists of 126 buildings and educational complexes with over 18 faculties: biology, chemistry and political science and sociology, physics and regional studies, history, applied linguistics and Slavic philology, philology, Polish language and public administration, applied social sciences and mathematics, computer science and mechanics; the University of Warsaw is one of the top Polish universities. It was ranked by Perspektywy magazine as best Polish university in 2010, 2011, 2014 and 2016. International rankings such as ARWU and University Web Ranking rank the university as the best Polish higher level institution.
On the list of 100 best European universities compiled by University Web Ranking, the University of Warsaw was placed as 61st. QS World University Rankings positioned the University of Warsaw as the best higher level institution among the world's top 400. In 1795 the partitions of Poland left Warsaw with access only to the Academy of Vilnius. In 1815, the newly established autonomous Congress Poland de facto belonging to the Russian Empire found itself without a university at all, as Vilnius was incorporated into Russia; the first to be established in Congress Poland were the Medical School. In 1816 Tsar Alexander I permitted the Polish authorities to create a university, comprising five departments: Law and Administration, Philosophy and Art and Humanities; the university soon grew to 50 professors. After most of the students and professors took part in the November 1830 Uprising the university was closed down. After the Crimean War, Russia entered a brief period of liberalization, the permission was given to create a Polish medical and surgical academy in Warsaw.
In 1862 departments of Law and Administration and History, Mathematics and Physics were opened. The newly established academy gained importance and was soon renamed the "Main School". However, after the January 1863 Uprising the liberal period ended and all Polish-language schools were closed down again. During its short existence, the Main School educated over 3,000 students, many of whom became part of the backbone of the Polish intelligentsia; the Main School was replaced with a Russian-language "Imperial University of Warsaw". Its purpose was to provide education for the Russian military garrison of Warsaw, the majority of students were Poles; the tsarist authorities believed that the Russian university would become a perfect way to Russify Polish society and spent a significant sum on building a new university campus. However, various underground organizations soon started to grow and the students became their leaders in Warsaw. Most notable of these groups joined the ranks of the 1905 Revolution.
Afterwards a boycott of Russian educational facilities was proclaimed and the number of Polish students dropped to below 10%. Most of the students who wanted to continue their education left for Western Europe. After the fall of the January Uprising, the Tsarist authorities' decided to convert the Main School into a Russian-language university, which functioned under the name of Imperial University for 46 years. There were two times. During the 1905–1907 revolution, such a proposal was made by some of the professors, in the face of a boycott of the university by Polish students. Talks on that subject were conducted with a number of Russian cities, including Voronezh and Saratov; the Russian government decided to keep a university in Warsaw, but as a result of the boycott, the university was Russian not only in the sense of the language used, but of the nationality of its professors and students. For the second time the question emerged during th
Hugo Henry Rignold was an English conductor and violinist, best remembered as Musical Director of the Royal Ballet and conductor of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. After playing the violin and recording with many jazz and dance bands, leading his own London Casino Orchestra, in the 1920s and 1930s, during World War II, Rignold began to conduct classical orchestras. Thereafter, he conducted opera at Covent Garden and the Liverpool Philharmonic, beginning in the late 1940s, followed by the Royal Ballet and his long tenure with Birmingham. Born in Kingston upon Thames, the son of conductor Hugo Charles Rignold and opera singer Agnes Mann, Rignold was taken to Canada when his parents emigrated to Winnipeg in 1910, he began studying the violin as a child with John Waterhouse in Winnipeg and played in the orchestra of the Winnipeg Theatre. After returning to England in 1921, he studied at the Royal Academy of Music and worked as a blacksmith for a time. In the 1920s and 1930s, Rignold played violin with many jazz and dance bands of the day, including those of Mantovani, Jack Hylton, Jack Harris, Fred Hartley, Lew Stone and Jay Wilbur.
Rignold was regarded as a jazz player. In 1936 The Gramophone magazine said of him, "With the possible exception of the Negro artist, Eddie South, our own Eric Siday, abroad, there have been only two violinists who have hitherto meant anything to jazz – Venuti, of course, more the French musician Stephane Grappelly. To my mind Hugo Rignold is a greater artist than any of them." Rignold went on to lead his own London Casino Orchestra. He made many recordings with these musicians, a good number of which have been reissued on modern CDs. Other classical musicians such as Leon and Sidonie Goossens, did but these early jazz and dance records caused some snobbish condescension towards Rignold in his career. 1920s recordings in which Rignold played with the Jack Hylton Orchestra include George Gershwin's "Oh, Lady Be Good" recorded on 29 March 1926, Irving Berlin's "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" recorded on 17 August 1926. Both were for HMV at the company's studios in Middlesex. With Hylton as his mentor, he founded and led his own band, playing up to the beginning of the Second World War.
Rignold married three times: in 1934 to Rita Mary Gaylor. There was a daughter by each of the first two marriages; the elder was Jennifer Gay, who became the first on-screen schoolgirl continuity announcer for Children's Hour on the BBC. While serving in the Royal Air Force in 1944, Rignold got the chance to conduct the Palestine Orchestra, now the Israel Philharmonic, thereafter his career remained within the classical sphere, he was a staff conductor at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, 1947–1948. A "period of unrest and strife" accompanied the beginning of Rignold's reign in Liverpool: Rignold replaced many older players in the orchestra, some of the audience were unimpressed by his career in popular music. In the 1949/1950 season with the Liverpool Philharmonic, Rignold conducted 34 concerts, with guest conductors, including Sargent, Rafael Kubelík, Zoltán Kodály, Sir Adrian Boult and Sir Thomas Beecham conducting a total of 19 other concerts. Rignold's programming there maintained a balance between presenting accepted modern and classical works and premiering new works, including Sergei Prokofiev's suite from Cinderella and works by Bohuslav Martinů, E. J. Moeran and Gordon Jacob.
From 1957 to 1960 Rignold was Musical Director of the Royal Ballet, In 1960 he became permanent conductor of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra when Andrzej Panufnik unexpectedly resigned. He remained at Birmingham until 1968. Rignold made a number of classical recordings, but did not have a long-term contract with any of the record companies, with the consequence that his recorded repertory was somewhat haphazard – accompanying concertos, or selections for operatic artists, ballet music. Most of his records were made in the mono era, some have been reissued on CD, he was a car enthusiast and talented driver: it was said that "he would not be out of place on the Grand Prix circuit". Mountain, Peter. Scraping a Living: A Life of a Violinist. Milton Keynes, UK: AuthorHouse. ISBN 1-4259-8390-1. Hugo Rignold biography
La Scala is an opera house in Milan, Italy. The theatre was inaugurated on 3 August 1778 and was known as the Nuovo Regio Ducale Teatro alla Scala; the premiere performance was Antonio Salieri's Europa riconosciuta. Most of Italy's greatest operatic artists, many of the finest singers from around the world, have appeared at La Scala; the theatre is regarded as one of the leading opera and ballet theatres in the world and is home to the La Scala Theatre Chorus, La Scala Theatre Ballet and La Scala Theatre Orchestra. The theatre has an associate school, known as the La Scala Theatre Academy, which offers professional training in music, stage craft and stage management. La Scala's season opens on Saint Ambrose's Day, the feast day of Milan's patron saint. All performances must end before midnight, long operas start earlier in the evening when necessary; the Museo Teatrale alla Scala, accessible from the theatre's foyer and a part of the house, contains a collection of paintings, statues and other documents regarding La Scala's and opera history in general.
La Scala hosts the Accademia d'Arti e Mestieri dello Spettacolo. Its goal is to train a new generation of young musicians, technical staff, dancers. A fire destroyed the previous theatre, the Teatro Regio Ducale, on 25 February 1776, after a carnival gala. A group of ninety wealthy Milanese, who owned private boxes in the theatre, wrote to Archduke Ferdinand of Austria-Este asking for a new theatre and a provisional one to be used while completing the new one; the neoclassical architect Giuseppe Piermarini produced an initial design but it was rejected by Count Firmian. A second plan was accepted in 1776 by Empress Maria Theresa; the new theatre was built on the former location of the church of Santa Maria alla Scala, from which the theatre gets its name. The church was deconsecrated and demolished and, over a period of two years, the theatre was completed by Pietro Marliani, Pietro Nosetti and Antonio and Giuseppe Fe; the theatre had a total of "3,000 or so" seats organized into 678 pit-stalls, arranged in six tiers of boxes above, the'loggione' or two galleries.
Its stage is one of the largest in Italy. Building expenses were covered by the sale of boxes, which were lavishly decorated by their owners, impressing observers such as Stendhal. La Scala soon became the preeminent meeting place for wealthy Milanese people. In the tradition of the times, the main floor had no chairs and spectators watched the shows standing up; the orchestra was in full sight. Above the boxes, La Scala has a gallery—called the loggione—where the less wealthy can watch the performances; the gallery is crowded with the most critical opera aficionados, known as the loggionisti, who can be ecstatic or merciless towards singers' perceived successes or failures. For their failures, artists receive a "baptism of fire" from these aficionados, fiascos are long remembered. For example, in 2006, tenor Roberto Alagna was booed off the stage during a performance of Aida; this forced his understudy, Antonello Palombi, to replace him mid-scene without time to change into a costume. As with most of the theatres at that time, La Scala was a casino, with gamblers sitting in the foyer.
Conditions in the auditorium, could be frustrating for the opera lover, as Mary Shelley discovered in September 1840: At the Opera they were giving Otto Nicolai's Templario. As is well known, the theatre of La Scala serves, not only as the universal drawing-room for all the society of Milan, but every sort of trading transaction, from horse-dealing to stock-jobbing, is carried on in the pit. La Scala was illuminated with 84 oil lamps mounted on the stage and another thousand in the rest of theatre. To prevent the risks of fire, several rooms were filled with hundreds of water buckets. In time, oil lamps were replaced by gas lamps, these in turn were replaced by electric lights in 1883; the original structure was renovated in 1907. In 1943, during World War II, La Scala was damaged by bombing, it was rebuilt and reopened on 11 May 1946, with a memorable concert conducted by Arturo Toscanini—twice La Scala's principal conductor and an associate of the composers Giuseppe Verdi and Giacomo Puccini—with a soprano solo by Renata Tebaldi, which created a sensation.
La Scala hosted the first productions of many famous operas, had a special relationship with Verdi. For several years, Verdi did not allow his work to be played here, as some of his music had been modified by the orchestra; this dispute originated in a disagreement over the production of his Giovanna d'Arco in 1845. The premiere of his last opera, Falstaff was given in the theatre. In 1982, the Filarmonica della Scala was established, drawing its members from the larger pool of musicians that comprise the Orchestra della Scala; the theatre underwent a major renovation from early 2002 to late 2004. The theatre closed following the traditional 7 December 2001 se
World War I
World War I known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history, it is one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide. On 28 June 1914, Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb Yugoslav nationalist, assassinated the Austro-Hungarian heir Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, leading to the July Crisis. In response, on 23 July Austria-Hungary issued an ultimatum to Serbia. Serbia's reply failed to satisfy the Austrians, the two moved to a war footing. A network of interlocking alliances enlarged the crisis from a bilateral issue in the Balkans to one involving most of Europe.
By July 1914, the great powers of Europe were divided into two coalitions: the Triple Entente—consisting of France and Britain—and the Triple Alliance of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy. Russia felt it necessary to back Serbia and, after Austria-Hungary shelled the Serbian capital of Belgrade on the 28th, partial mobilisation was approved. General Russian mobilisation was announced on the evening of 30 July; when Russia failed to comply, Germany declared war on 1 August in support of Austria-Hungary, with Austria-Hungary following suit on 6th. German strategy for a war on two fronts against France and Russia was to concentrate the bulk of its army in the West to defeat France within four weeks shift forces to the East before Russia could mobilise. On 2 August, Germany demanded free passage through Belgium, an essential element in achieving a quick victory over France; when this was refused, German forces invaded Belgium on 3 August and declared war on France the same day. On 12 August and France declared war on Austria-Hungary.
In November 1914, the Ottoman Empire entered the war on the side of the Alliance, opening fronts in the Caucasus and the Sinai Peninsula. The war was fought in and drew upon each power's colonial empire as well, spreading the conflict to Africa and across the globe; the Entente and its allies would become known as the Allied Powers, while the grouping of Austria-Hungary and their allies would become known as the Central Powers. The German advance into France was halted at the Battle of the Marne and by the end of 1914, the Western Front settled into a battle of attrition, marked by a long series of trench lines that changed little until 1917. In 1915, Italy opened a front in the Alps. Bulgaria joined the Central Powers in 1915 and Greece joined the Allies in 1917, expanding the war in the Balkans; the United States remained neutral, although by doing nothing to prevent the Allies from procuring American supplies whilst the Allied blockade prevented the Germans from doing the same the U. S. became an important supplier of war material to the Allies.
After the sinking of American merchant ships by German submarines, the revelation that the Germans were trying to incite Mexico to make war on the United States, the U. S. declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917. Trained American forces would not begin arriving at the front in large numbers until mid-1918, but the American Expeditionary Force would reach some two million troops. Though Serbia was defeated in 1915, Romania joined the Allied Powers in 1916 only to be defeated in 1917, none of the great powers were knocked out of the war until 1918; the 1917 February Revolution in Russia replaced the Tsarist autocracy with the Provisional Government, but continuing discontent at the cost of the war led to the October Revolution, the creation of the Soviet Socialist Republic, the signing of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk by the new government in March 1918, ending Russia's involvement in the war. This allowed the transfer of large numbers of German troops from the East to the Western Front, resulting in the German March 1918 Offensive.
This offensive was successful, but the Allies rallied and drove the Germans back in their Hundred Days Offensive. Bulgaria was the first Central Power to sign an armistice—the Armistice of Salonica on 29 September 1918. On 30 October, the Ottoman Empire capitulated. On 4 November, the Austro-Hungarian empire agreed to the Armistice of Villa Giusti after being decisively defeated by Italy in the Battle of Vittorio Veneto. With its allies defeated, revolution at home, the military no longer willing to fight, Kaiser Wilhelm abdicated on 9 November and Germany signed an armistice on 11 November 1918. World War I was a significant turning point in the political, cultural and social climate of the world; the war and its immediate aftermath sparked numerous uprisings. The Big Four (Britain, the United States, It
Łódź is the third-largest city in Poland and a former industrial hub. Located in the central part of the country, it has a population of 687,702, it is the capital of Łódź Voivodeship, is 120 kilometres south-west of Warsaw. The city's coat of arms is an example of canting, as it depicts a boat, which alludes to the city's name. Łódź was once a small settlement that first appeared in written records in around 1332. In the early 15th century it was granted city rights, but remained a rather small and insubstantial town, it was the property of Kuyavian bishops and clergy until the end of the 18th century, when Łódź was annexed by Prussia as a result of the second partition of Poland. Following the collapse of the independent Duchy of Warsaw, the city became part of Congress Poland, a client state of the Russian Empire, it was that Łódź experienced rapid growth in the cloth industry and in population due to the inflow of migrants, most notably Germans and Jews. Since the industrialization of the area, the city has struggled with many difficulties such as multinationalism and social inequality, which were vividly documented in the novel The Promised Land written by Polish Nobel Prize-winning author Władysław Reymont.
The contrasts reflected on the architecture of the city, where luxurious mansions coexisted with redbrick factories and old tenement houses. After Poland regained its independence in 1918, Łódź grew to be one of the largest Polish cities and one of the most multicultural and industrial centers in Europe; the interbellum period saw rapid development in healthcare. After the invasion of Poland in 1939, the German Army captured the city and renamed it Litzmannstadt in honour of the German general Karl Litzmann, victorious near the area during World War I; the city's large Jewish population was forced into a walled zone known as the Łódź Ghetto, from which they were sent to German concentration and extermination camps. Following the occupation of the city by the Soviet Army, Łódź, which sustained insignificant damage during the war, became part of the newly established Polish People's Republic. After years of prosperity during the socialist era, Łódź experienced decline after the fall of communism throughout Central and Eastern Europe.
The city is internationally known for its National Film School, a cradle for the most renowned Polish actors and directors, including Andrzej Wajda and Roman Polanski, in 2017 was inducted into the UNESCO Creative Cities Network and named UNESCO City of Film. Łódź first appears in the written record in a 1332 document giving the village of Łodzia to the bishops of Włocławek. In 1423 King Władysław II Jagiełło granted city rights to the village of Łódź. From until the 18th century the town remained a small settlement on a trade route between the provinces of Masovia and Silesia. In the 16th century the town had fewer than 800 inhabitants working on the surrounding grain farms. With the second partition of Poland in 1793, Łódź became part of the Kingdom of Prussia's province of South Prussia, was known in German as Lodsch. In 1798 the Prussians nationalised the town, it lost its status as a town of the bishops of Kuyavia. In 1806 Łódź joined the Napoleonic Duchy of Warsaw and in 1810 it had 190 inhabitants.
After the 1815 Congress of Vienna treaty it became part of the Congress Kingdom of Poland, a client state of the Russian Empire. In the 1815 treaty, it was planned to renew the dilapidated town and with the 1816 decree by the Czar a number of German immigrants received territory deeds for them to clear the land and to build factories and housing. In 1820 Stanisław Staszic aided in changing the small town into a modern industrial centre; the immigrants came to the Promised Land from all over Europe. They arrived from Saxony and Bohemia, but from countries as far away as Portugal, England and Ireland; the first cotton mill opened in 1825, 14 years the first steam-powered factory in both Poland and the Russian Empire commenced operations. In 1839, over 78% of the population was German, German schools and churches were established. A constant influx of workers and craftsmen from all over Europe transformed Łódź into the main textile production centre of the mighty Russian Empire spanning from East-Central Europe all the way to Alaska.
Three groups dominated the city's population and contributed the most to the city's development: Poles and Jews, who started to arrive from 1848. Many of the Łódź craftspeople were weavers from Lower Silesia. In 1850, Russia abolished the customs barrier between Congress Poland and Russia proper and therefore industry in Łódź could now develop with a huge Russian market not far away; the city became the second-largest city of Congress Poland. In 1865 the first railroad line opened, soon the city had rail links with Warsaw and Białystok. One of the most important industrialists of Łódź was Karl Wilhelm Scheibler. In 1852 he came to Łódź and with Julius Schwarz together started buying property and building several factories. Scheibler bought out Schwarz's share and thus became sole owner of a large business. After he died in 1881 his widow and other members of the family decided to pay homage to his memory by erecting a chapel, intended as a mausoleum with family crypt, in the Lutheran part of the Łódź cemetery on ulica Ogrodowa.
Between 1823 and 1873, the city's population doubled every ten years. The years 1870–1890 marked the pe