Marcus Aurelius, called the Philosopher, was a Roman emperor from 161 to 180. He ruled the Roman Empire with his adoptive brother Lucius Verus until Lucius' death in 169, he was the last of the rulers traditionally known as the Five Good Emperors. He is seen as the last emperor of the Pax Romana, an age of relative peace and stability for the Empire, his personal philosophical writings, now known as Meditations, are a significant source of the modern understanding of ancient Stoic philosophy. They have been praised by fellow writers and monarchs – as well as by poets and politicians – centuries after his death. Marcus was born into a Roman patrician family, his father was a praetor, after whose death in 124 Marcus was raised by his paternal grandfather, his mother was a wealthy heiress. He was educated at home, as children from Roman aristocratic families were, credited his maternal grandmother's step-father Lucius Catilius Severus – who helped Marcus' grandfather to raise him – for his education.
His tutors included the artist Diognetus, who may have sparked his interest in philosophy, Tuticius Proclus. Marcus was betrothed to the daughter of Lucius Aelius, his relative Emperor Hadrian's first adopted son and heir. Aelius died in 138 and Hadrian chose as his new heir Antoninus Pius, the husband of Marcus' aunt, on the condition that Antoninus adopt Marcus and the son of Aelius, Lucius Commodus. Antoninus became emperor that year upon Hadrian's death, Marcus and Lucius became joint heirs to the throne. While imperial heir, Marcus studied Latin, his tutors included Herodes Atticus and Marcus Cornelius Fronto. He kept in close correspondence with Fronto for many years afterwards. Marcus was introduced to Stoicism by Quintus Junius Rusticus and by other philosophers such as Apollonius of Chalcedon, he was made the symbolic head of the Roman equites. He was appointed consul with Antoninus in 140 and 145, with his adoptive brother Lucius in 161. On 7 March 161, Antoninus died and the two succeeded to the imperial throne.
Marcus' reign was marked by military conflict. In the East, the Roman Empire fought with a revitalized Parthian Empire and the rebel Kingdom of Armenia. Marcus defeated the Marcomanni and Sarmatians in the Marcomannic Wars; however and other Germanic peoples began to represent a troubling reality for the Empire. Marcus modified the silver purity of the denarius. Persecution of Christians is believed to have increased during his reign; the Antonine Plague that broke out in 165 or 166 devastated the population of the Roman Empire. It caused the deaths of a quarter of those it affected. Marcus never adopted an heir unlike some of his predecessors. Marcus became the first emperor to die with a living, adult son since Titus succeeded his father Vespasian a century earlier, but Commodus is considered a disappointment as emperor and his succession has long been the subject of debate among both contemporary and modern historians; the Column and Equestrian Statue of Marcus Aurelius still stand in Rome, where they were erected in celebration of Marcus' military victories.
The major sources depicting the life and rule of Marcus are patchy and unreliable. The most important group of sources, the biographies contained in the Historia Augusta, claim to be written by a group of authors at the turn of the 4th century AD, but were in fact written by a single author from about 395 AD; the biographies and the biographies of subordinate emperors and usurpers are unreliable, but the earlier biographies, derived from now-lost earlier sources, are much more accurate. For Marcus' life and rule, the biographies of Hadrian, Antoninus and Lucius are reliable, but those of Aelius Verus and Avidius Cassius are not. A body of correspondence between Marcus' tutor Fronto and various Antonine officials survives in a series of patchy manuscripts, covering the period from c. 138 to 166. Marcus' own Meditations offer a window on his inner life, but are undateable and make few specific references to worldly affairs; the main narrative source for the period is Cassius Dio, a Greek senator from Bithynian Nicaea who wrote a history of Rome from its founding to 229 in eighty books.
Dio is vital for the military history of the period, but his senatorial prejudices and strong opposition to imperial expansion obscure his perspective. Some other literary sources provide specific details: the writings of the physician Galen on the habits of the Antonine elite, the orations of Aelius Aristides on the temper of the times, the constitutions preserved in the Digest and Codex Justinianus on Marcus' legal work. Inscriptions and coin finds supplement the literary sources. Marcus was born in Rome on 26 April 121, his name at birth was Marcus Annius Verus, but some sources assign this name to him upon his father's death and unofficial adoption by his grandfather, upon his coming of age, or at the time of his marriage. He may have been known as Marcus Annius Catilius Severus, at birth or at some point in his youth, or Marcus Catilius Severus Annius Verus. Upon his adoption by Antoninus as heir to the throne, he was known as Marcus Aelius Aurelius Verus Caesar and, upon his ascension, he was Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus until his death.
Wilhelm von Humboldt
Friedrich Wilhelm Christian Karl Ferdinand von Humboldt was a Prussian philosopher, government functionary and founder of the Humboldt University of Berlin, named after him in 1949. He is remembered as a linguist who made important contributions to the philosophy of language, ethnolinguistics and to the theory and practice of education. In particular, he is recognized as having been the architect of the Humboldtian education ideal, used from the beginning in Prussia as a model for its system of education and in countries such as the US and Japan, his younger brother, Alexander von Humboldt, was famous as a geographer and explorer. Humboldt was born in Potsdam, Margraviate of Brandenburg, died in Tegel, Province of Brandenburg. In June 1791, he married Caroline von Dacheröden, they had eight children. Humboldt was a philosopher, it influenced John Stuart Mill's essay On Liberty through which von Humboldt's ideas became known in the English-speaking world. Humboldt outlined an early version of what Mill would call the "harm principle".
His house in Rome became a cultural hub, run by Caroline von Humboldt. The section dealing with education was published in the December 1792 issue of the Berlinische Monatsschrift under the title "On public state education". With this publication, Humboldt took part in the philosophical debate regarding the direction of national education, in progress in Germany, as elsewhere, after the French Revolution. Humboldt had been home schooled and never finished his comparably short university studies at the universities of Frankfurt and Göttingen, he became one of the most influential officials in German education. Humboldt had intended to become Minister of education, but failed to attain that position; the Prussian King asked him to leave Rome in 1809 and to lead the directorate of education under Friedrich Ferdinand Alexander zu Dohna-Schlobitten. Humboldt did not reply to the appointment for several weeks and would have preferred to stay on at the embassy in Rome, his wife did not return with him to Prussia.
Humboldt installed a standardized system of public instruction, from basic schools till secondary education, founded Berlin University. He imposed a standardization of state examinations and inspections and created a special department within the ministry to oversee and design curricula and learning aids. Humboldt's plans for reforming the Prussian school system were not published until long after his death, together with his fragment of a treatise on the'Theory of Human Education', which he had written in about 1793. Here, Humboldt states that'the ultimate task of our existence is to give the fullest possible content to the concept of humanity in our own person... through the impact of actions in our own lives.' This task'can only be implemented through the links established between ourselves as individuals and the world around us'. Humboldt's concept of education does not lend itself to individualistic interpretation, it is true that he always recognized the importance of the organization of individual life and the'development of a wealth of individual forms', but he stressed the fact that'self-education can only be continued... in the wider context of development of the world'.
In other words, the individual is not only entitled, but obliged, to play his part in shaping the world around him. Humboldt's educational ideal was coloured by social considerations, he never believed that the'human race could culminate in the attainment of a general perfection conceived in abstract terms'. In 1789, he wrote in his diary that'the education of the individual requires his incorporation into society and involves his links with society at large'. In his essay on the'Theory of Human Education', he answered the question as to the'demands which must be made of a nation, of an age and of the human race'.'Education and virtue' must be disseminated to such an extent that the'concept of mankind' takes on a great and dignified form in each individual. However, this shall be achieved by each individual, who must'absorb the great mass of material offered to him by the world around him and by his inner existence, using all the possibilities of his receptiveness. Humboldt educational model goes beyond vocational training.
In a letter to the Prussian king, he wrote: "There are undeniably certain kinds of knowledge that must be of a general nature and, more a certain cultivation of the mind and character that nobody can afford to be without. People cannot be good craftworkers, soldiers or businessmen unless, regardless of their occupation, they are good, upstanding and – according to their condition – well-informed human beings and citizens. If this basis is laid through schooling, vocational skills are acquired on, a person is always free to move from one occupation to another, as so happens in life
Culture of Iran
The culture of Iran known as culture of Persia, is one of the oldest in the world. Owing to its dominant geo-political position and culture in the world, Iran has directly influenced cultures and peoples as far away as Italy and Greece to the West, Russia to the North, the Arabian Peninsula to the South, South and East Asia to the East, thus an eclectic cultural elasticity has been said to be one of the key defining characteristics of the Persian spirit and a clue to its historical longevity. Furthermore, Iran's culture has manifested itself in several facets throughout the history of Iran as well as the Caucasus, Central Asia and Mesopotamia; the article uses the words Persian and Iranian interchangeably, sometimes referring to the language and its speakers, other times referring to the name of pre-20th century Iran, a nomenclature which survives from western explorers and orientalists. Iran has one of the richest art heritages in world history and encompasses many disciplines including architecture, weaving, calligraphy and stonemasonry.
There is a vibrant Iranian modern and contemporary art scene. Iranian art has gone through numerous phases; the unique aesthetics of Iran is evident from the Achaemenid reliefs in Persepolis to the mosaic paintings of Bishapur. The Islamic era brought drastic changes to the styles and practice of the arts, each dynasty with its own particular foci; the Qajarid era was the last stage of classical Persian art, before modernism was imported and suffused into elements of traditionalist schools of aesthetics. Several languages are spoken in different regions of Iran; the predominant language and national language is Persian, spoken across the country. Azerbaijani is spoken and in the northwest, Kurdish in the west as well as Luri and Gilaki at the Caspian Sea coastal regions, Arabic in the Persian Gulf coastal regions, Balochi in the desolate and remote far southeast, Turkmen in northern border regions. Smaller languages spread in other regions notably include Talysh, Armenian and Circassian, amongst others.
Persian literature inspired Goethe, Ralph Waldo Emerson, many others, it has been dubbed as a most worthy language to serve as a conduit for poetry. Dialects of Persian are sporadically spoken throughout the region from China to Syria to Russia, though in the Iranian Plateau. Contemporary Iranian literature is influenced by classical Persian poetry, but reflects the particularities of modern-day Iran, through writers such as Houshang Moradi-Kermani, the most translated modern Iranian author, poet Ahmad Shamlou. Zoroastrianism was the national faith of Iran for more than a millennium before the Arab conquest, it has had an immense influence on Iranian philosophy and art after the people of Iran converted to Islam. Today of the 98% of Muslims living in Iran, around 89% are Shi'a and only around 9% are Sunni; this is quite the opposite trend of the percentage distribution of Shi'a to Sunni Islam followers in the rest of the Muslim population from state to state and throughout the rest of the world.
Followers of the Baha'i faith comprise the largest non-Muslim minority in Iran. Followers of the Baha'i faith are scattered throughout small communities in Iran, although there seems to be a large population of people who follow the Baha'i faith in Tehran. Most of the Baha'i are of Persian descent, although there seem to be many among the Azerbaijani and Kurdish people; the Baha'i are persecuted. Followers of the Christian faith comprise around 250,000 Armenians, around 32,000 Assyrians, a small number of Roman Catholic and Protestant Iranians that have been converted by missionaries in earlier centuries. Thus, Christians that live in Iran are descendants of indigenous Christians that were converted during the 19th and 20th centuries. Judaism is an recognized faith in Iran, in spite of the hostilities between Iran and Israel over the Palestinian issue, the millennia old Jewish community in Iran enjoys the right to practice their religion as well as a dedicated seat in parliament to a representative member of their faith.
In addition to Christianity and Judaism, Zoroastrianism is another recognized religion in Iran, although followers of this faith do not hold a large population in Iran. In addition, although there have been isolated incidences of prejudice against Zoroastrians, most followers of this faith have not been persecuted for being followers of this faith; the Persian year begins in the vernal equinox: if the astronomical vernal equinox comes before noon the present day is the first day of the Persian year. If the equinox falls after noon the next day is the official first day of the Persian year; the Persian Calendar, the official calendar of Iran, is a solar calendar with a starting point, the same as the Islamic calendar. According to the Iran Labor Code, Friday is the weekly day of rest. Government official working hours are from Saturday to Wednesday. Although the date of certain holidays in Iran are not exact, some of the major public holidays in Iran include Oil Nationalization Day, Nowrooz—which is the Iranian equivalent of New Years, the Prophet's Birthday and Imam Sadeq, the Death of Imam Khomeini.
Additional holidays include The Anniversary of the Uprising Against the Shah, Victory of the 1979 Islamic Revolution, Sizdah-Bedar—Public Outing Day to end Nowrooz
Corinth is an ancient city and former municipality in Corinthia, located in south-central Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality of Corinth, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit, it is the capital of Corinthia. It was founded as Nea Korinthos or New Corinth in 1858 after an earthquake destroyed the existing settlement of Corinth, which had developed in and around the site of ancient Corinth. Located about 78 kilometres west of Athens, Corinth is surrounded by the coastal townlets of Lechaio, Isthmia and the inland townlets of Examilia and the archaeological site and village of ancient Corinth. Natural features around the city include the narrow coastal plain of Vocha, the Corinthian Gulf, the Isthmus of Corinth cut by its canal, the Saronic Gulf, the Oneia Mountains, the monolithic rock of Acrocorinth, where the medieval acropolis was built. Corinth derives its name from a city-state of antiquity; the site was occupied from before 3000 BC. But historical sources about the city concerns the early 8th century BC, when Corinth began to develop as a commercial center.
Between the 8th and 7th centuries, the Bacchiad family ruled Corinth. Cypselus overthrew the Bacchiad family, between 657 and 550 BC, he and his son Periander ruled Corinth as the Tyrants. In about 550 BC, an oligarchical government seized power; this government allied with Sparta within the Peloponnesian League, Corinth participated in the Persian Wars and Peloponnesian War as an ally of Sparta. After Sparta's victory in the Peloponnesian war, the two allies fell out with one another, Corinth pursued an independent policy in the various wars of the early 4th century BC. After the Macedonian conquest of Greece, the Acrocorinth was the seat of a Macedonian garrison until 243 BC, when the city was liberated and joined the Achaean League. Nearly a century in 146 BC, Corinth was captured and destroyed by Roman armies; as a Roman colony in 44 BC, Corinth flourished and became the administrative capital of the Roman province of Achaea. In 1858, the old city, now known as Ancient Corinth, located 3 kilometres south-west of the modern city, was destroyed by a magnitude 6.5 earthquake.
New Corinth was built to the north-east of it, on the coast of the Gulf of Corinth. In 1928 a magnitude 6.3 earthquake devastated the new city, rebuilt on the same site. In 1933 there was a great fire, the new city was rebuilt again; the Municipality of Corinth had a population of 58,192 according to the 2011 census, the second most populous municipality in the Peloponnese Region after Kalamata. The municipal unit of Corinth had 38,132 inhabitants, of which Corinth itself had 30,176 inhabitants, placing it in third place behind Kalamata and Tripoli among the cities of the Peloponnese Region; the municipal unit of Corinth includes apart from Corinth proper the town of Archaia Korinthos, the town of Examilia, the smaller settlements of Xylokeriza and Solomos. The municipal unit has an area of 102.187 km2. Corinth is a major industrial hub at a national level; the Corinth Refinery is one of the largest oil refining industrial complexes in Europe. Copper cables, petroleum products, medical equipment, gypsum, ceramic tiles, mineral water and beverages, meat products, gums are produced nearby.
As of 2005, a period of deindustrialization has commenced as a large pipework complex, a textile factory and a meat packing facility diminished their operations. Corinth is a major road hub; the A7 toll motorway for Tripoli and Kalamata, branches off the A8/European route E94 toll motorway from Athens at Corinth. Corinth is the main entry point to the Peloponnesian peninsula, the southernmost area of continental Greece. KTEL Korinthias provides intercity bus service in the peninsula and to Athens via the Isthmos station southeast of the city center. Local bus service is available; the city has been connected to the Proastiakos, the Athens suburban rail network, since 2005, when the new Corinth railway station was completed. The port of Corinth, located north of the city centre and close to the northwest entrance of the Corinth Canal, at 37 56.0’ N / 22 56.0’ E, serves the local needs of industry and agriculture. It is a cargo exporting facility, it is an artificial harbour (depth 9 metres, protected by a concrete mole.
A new pier finished in the late 1980s doubled the capacity of the port. The reinforced mole protects anchored vessels from strong northern winds. Within the port operates a customs office facility and a Hellenic Coast Guard post. Sea traffic is limited to trade in the export of local produce citrus fruits, marble and some domestic imports; the port operates as a contingency facility for general cargo ships, bulk carriers and ROROs, in case of strikes at Piraeus port. There was a ferry link to Catania and Genoa in Italy; the Corinth Canal, carrying ship traffic between the western Mediterranean Sea and the Aegean Sea, is about 4 kilometres east of the city, cutting through the Isthmus of Corinth that connects the Peloponnesian peninsula to the Greek mainland, thus making the former an island. The builders dug the canal through the Isthmus at sea level, it is 6.4 kilometres in length and only 21.3 metres (70
Romanticism was an artistic, literary and intellectual movement that originated in Europe toward the end of the 18th century, in most areas was at its peak in the approximate period from 1800 to 1850. Romanticism was characterized by its emphasis on emotion and individualism as well as glorification of all the past and nature, preferring the medieval rather than the classical, it was a reaction to the Industrial Revolution, the aristocratic social and political norms of the Age of Enlightenment, the scientific rationalization of nature—all components of modernity. It was embodied most in the visual arts and literature, but had a major impact on historiography, the social sciences, the natural sciences, it had a significant and complex effect on politics, with romantic thinkers influencing liberalism, radicalism and nationalism. The movement emphasized intense emotion as an authentic source of aesthetic experience, placing new emphasis on such emotions as apprehension and terror, awe—especially that experienced in confronting the new aesthetic categories of the sublimity and beauty of nature.
It elevated folk art and ancient custom to something noble, but spontaneity as a desirable characteristic. In contrast to the Rationalism and Classicism of the Enlightenment, Romanticism revived medievalism and elements of art and narrative perceived as authentically medieval in an attempt to escape population growth, early urban sprawl, industrialism. Although the movement was rooted in the German Sturm und Drang movement, which preferred intuition and emotion to the rationalism of the Enlightenment, the events and ideologies of the French Revolution were proximate factors. Romanticism assigned a high value to the achievements of "heroic" individualists and artists, whose examples, it maintained, would raise the quality of society, it promoted the individual imagination as a critical authority allowed of freedom from classical notions of form in art. There was a strong recourse to historical and natural inevitability, a Zeitgeist, in the representation of its ideas. In the second half of the 19th century, Realism was offered as a polar opposite to Romanticism.
The decline of Romanticism during this time was associated with multiple processes, including social and political changes and the spread of nationalism. The nature of Romanticism may be approached from the primary importance of the free expression of the feelings of the artist; the importance the Romantics placed on emotion is summed up in the remark of the German painter Caspar David Friedrich, "the artist's feeling is his law". To William Wordsworth, poetry should begin as "the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings", which the poet "recollect in tranquility", evoking a new but corresponding emotion the poet can mold into art. To express these feelings, it was considered the content of art had to come from the imagination of the artist, with as little interference as possible from "artificial" rules dictating what a work should consist of. Samuel Taylor Coleridge and others believed there were natural laws the imagination—at least of a good creative artist—would unconsciously follow through artistic inspiration if left alone.
As well as rules, the influence of models from other works was considered to impede the creator's own imagination, so that originality was essential. The concept of the genius, or artist, able to produce his own original work through this process of creation from nothingness, is key to Romanticism, to be derivative was the worst sin; this idea is called "romantic originality". Translator and prominent Romantic August Wilhelm Schlegel argued in his Lectures on Dramatic Arts and Letters that the most phenomenal power of human nature is its capacity to divide and diverge into opposite directions. Not essential to Romanticism, but so widespread as to be normative, was a strong belief and interest in the importance of nature; this in the effect of nature upon the artist when he is surrounded by it, preferably alone. In contrast to the very social art of the Enlightenment, Romantics were distrustful of the human world, tended to believe a close connection with nature was mentally and morally healthy.
Romantic art addressed its audiences with what was intended to be felt as the personal voice of the artist. So, in literature, "much of romantic poetry invited the reader to identify the protagonists with the poets themselves". According to Isaiah Berlin, Romanticism embodied "a new and restless spirit, seeking violently to burst through old and cramping forms, a nervous preoccupation with perpetually changing inner states of consciousness, a longing for the unbounded and the indefinable, for perpetual movement and change, an effort to return to the forgotten sources of life, a passionate effort at self-assertion both individual and collective, a search after means of expressing an unappeasable yearning for unattainable goals"; the group of words with the root "Roman" in the various European languages, such as "romance" and "Romanesque", has a complicated history, but by the middle of the 18th century "romantic" in English and romantique in French were both in common use as adjectives of praise for natural phenomena such as views and sunsets, in a sense close to modern English usage but without the amorous connotation.
The application of the term to literature first became common in Germany, where the circle around the Schlegel brothers, critics August and Friedrich, began to speak of romantische Poesie in the 1790s, contrasting it with "classic" but in terms of spirit rather than dating. Friedrich Schlegel wrote in his Dialogue on Poetry, "I seek and find the romantic among th
Titus Quinctius Flamininus
Titus Quinctius Flamininus was a Roman politician and general instrumental in the Roman conquest of Greece. A member of the patrician gens Quinctia, brother to Lucius Quinctius Flamininus, he served as a military tribune in the Second Punic war and in 205 BC he was appointed propraetor in Tarentum, he was a quaestor in 199 BC. He became consul in 198 BC, despite being only about thirty years old, younger than the constitutional age required to serve in that position; as Livy records, two tribunes, Marcus Fulvius and Manius Curius, publicly opposed his candidacy for consulship, as he was just a quaestor, but the Senate overrode the opposition and he was elected along with Sextus Aelius Paetus. After his election to the consulship he was chosen to replace Publius Sulpicius Galba, consul with Gaius Aurelius in 200 BC, according to Livy, as general during the Second Macedonian War, he chased Philip V of Macedon out of most of Greece, except for a few fortresses, defeating him at the Battle of the Aous, but as his term as consul was coming to an end he attempted to establish a peace with the Macedonian king.
During the negotiations, Flamininus was made proconsul, giving him the authority to continue the war rather than finishing the negotiations. In 197 BC he defeated Philip at the Battle of Cynoscephalae in Thessaly, the Roman legions making the Macedonian phalanx obsolete in the process. Philip was forced to surrender, give up all the Greek cities he had conquered, pay Rome 1,000 talents, but his kingdom was left intact to serve as a buffer state between Greece and Illyria; this displeased the Achaean League, Rome's allies in Greece, who wanted Macedon to be dismantled completely. In 198 BC he made it his naval yard and his main provisioning port. During the period from 197 to 194 BC, from his seat in Elateia, Flamininus directed the political affairs of the Greek states. In 196 BC Flamininus appeared at the Isthmian Games in Corinth and proclaimed the freedom of the Greek states, he was fluent in Greek and was a great admirer of Greek culture, the Greeks hailed him as their liberator. According to Livy, this was the act of an unselfish Philhellene, although it seems more that Flamininus understood freedom as liberty for the aristocracy of Greece, who would become clients of Rome, as opposed to being subjected to Macedonian hegemony.
With his Greek allies, Flamininus plundered Sparta, before returning to Rome in triumph along with thousands of freed slaves, 1,200 of whom were freed from Achaea, having been taken captive and sold in Greece during the Second Punic War. Meanwhile, Eumenes II of Pergamum appealed to Rome for help against the Seleucid king Antiochus III. Flamininus was sent to negotiate with him in 192 BC, warned him not to interfere with the Greek states. Antiochus did not believe Flamininus had the authority to speak for the Greeks, promised to leave Greece alone only if the Romans did the same; these negotiations came to nothing and Rome was soon at war with Antiochus. Flamininus was present at the Battle of Thermopylae in 191 BC. In 189 BC he was elected censor along with Marcus Claudius Marcellus, defeating among others Cato the Elder. In 183 BC he was sent to negotiate with Prusias I of Bithynia in an attempt to capture Hannibal, exiled there from Carthage, but Hannibal committed suicide to avoid being taken prisoner.
According to Plutarch, many senators reproached Flamininus for having cruelly caused the death of an enemy who had now become harmless. Although nothing is known of him after this, Flamininus seems to have died around 174. Plutarch's parallel lives – Flamininus – Loeb edn. at Bill Thayer's website Livy's History of Rome