Extremadura is an autonomous community of the western Iberian Peninsula whose capital city is Mérida, recognised by the Statute of Autonomy of Extremadura. It is made up of the two largest provinces of Spain: Badajoz, it is bordered by the provinces of Ávila to the north. Its official language is Spanish, it is an important area for wildlife with the major reserve at Monfragüe, designated a National Park in 2007, the International Tagus River Natural Park. The government of Extremadura is called Gobierno de Extremadura; the Day of Extremadura is celebrated on 8 September. It coincides with the Catholic festivity of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Extremadura is contained between 37° 57′ and 40° 85′ N latitude, 4° 39′ and 7° 33′ W longitude; the area of Extremadura is 41,633 km2, making it the fifth largest of the Spanish autonomous communities. It is located in the Southern Plateau. In the north is the Sistema Central with the highest point in Extremadura, 2,401 m high Calvitero; the main subranges of the Sistema Central in Extremadura are the Sierra de Sierra de Béjar.
In the centre is the Sierra de las Villuercas, which reaches an altitude of 1,603 m on the Pico de las Villuercas. Other notable ranges are Sierra de Montánchez and the Sierra de San Pedro, which form part of the greater Montes de Toledo system. To the south rises the Sierra Morena, which separates Extremadura from Andalusia, the Sierra de Tentudía, with the highest peak in Extremadura as Pico Tentudía at 1,104 m. There are four different hydrographic basins: The basin of the Tagus, with two principal tributaries: on the right, the Tiétar and the Alagón; the tributaries on the right edge carry a large quantity of water, which feed the gorges of the Sistema Central where the rainfall is abundant and the winter brings a great quantity of snow. The basin of the Guadiana, which has principal tributaries: to the right: Guadarranque and Ruecas to the left: Zújar River, its plentiful tributary and the Matachel; the basin of the Guadalquivir with only 1,411 km2 in Extremadura. The basin of the Douro with only 35 km2 in Extremadura.
The climate of Extremadura is hot-summer Mediterranean. It is characterized by its hot and dry summers, with great droughts, its mild winters due to the oceanic influence from its proximity to the Atlantic coast of Portugal; the yearly temperature fluctuates between an average minimum of 4 °C and an average maximum of 33 °C. In the north of Extremadura, the average temperatures are lower than those in the south, with temperatures rising south towards the Sierra Morena, where they drop because of the altitude. During the summer, the average temperature in July is greater than 26 °C, at times reaching 40 °C; the winters are mild, with the lowest temperatures being registered in the mountainous regions, with an average temperature of 7.5 °C. The average snowfall is 40 cm occurring in January and February on high ground. Lusitania, an ancient Roman province including current day Portugal and a central western portion of the current day Spain, covered in those times today's Autonomous Community of Extremadura.
Mérida became the capital of the Roman province of Lusitania, one of the most important cities in the Roman Empire. During the Andalusian period as of 711, present-day Extremadura was on the north-western marches—extremadura is from Latin words meaning "outermost hard", the outermost secure border of an occupied territory—with Mérida being its head city, it was part of the Umayyad Caliphate of Córdoba, but after its definite collapse in 1031 the Caliphate fragmented into small regional kingdoms, the lands of Extremadura were included in the Taifa of Badajoz on two taifa periods. The kingdom in turn broke up twice under Almohad push. After the Almohad disaster in Navas de Tolosa, Extremadura fell to the troops led by Alfonso IX of León in c.1230. Extremadura, an impoverished region of Spain whose difficult conditions pushed many of its ambitious young men to seek their fortunes overseas, was the source of many of the initial Spanish conquerors and settlers in America. Hernán Cortés, Francisco Pizarro, Gonzalo Pizarro, Juan Pizarro, Hernando Pizarro, Hernando de Soto, Andres Tapia, Pedro de Alvarado, Pedro de Valdivia, Inés Suárez, Alonso de Sotomayor, Francisco de Orellana, Pedro Gómez Duran y Chaves, Vasco Núñez de Balboa and many towns and cities in North and South America carry names from their homeland.
Examples include Mérida is the name of the administrative capital of Extremadura, of important cities in Mexico and Venezuela. The two Spanish astronauts, Miguel López-Alegría and Pedro Duque have family connections in Extremadura. King Ferdinand II of Aragon died in the village
Western Canada referred to as the Western provinces and more known as the West, is a region of Canada that includes the four provinces of Alberta, British Columbia and Saskatchewan. British Columbia is culturally, economically and politically distinct from the other parts of Western Canada and is referred to as the "west coast" or "Pacific Canada", while Alberta and Manitoba are grouped together as the Prairie Provinces and most known as "The Prairies"; the capital cities of the four western provinces, from west to east, are. With the exception of Winnipeg, the largest city in Manitoba, all other provincial capitals of the Western Provinces are located in the second-largest metropolitan areas of their respective province. Western Canada is the traditional territory of numerous First Nations predating the arrival of Europeans; as Britain colonized the west, it established treaties with various First Nations, took control of other areas without opposition and fought with other First Nations to take control of Western Canada.
Not all lands were ceded by the First Nations to British control and land claims are still ongoing. In 1858, the British government established the Colony of British Columbia, governing that part of Canada still known as British Columbia; the British government established the Hudson's Bay Company which controlled most of the current area of Western Canada, northern Ontario and northern Quebec, the area known as Rupert's Land and the North-Western Territory. In 1870, the British government transferred the lands of the company to Canada; the area of Western Canada not within British Columbia was established as the Northwest Territories under Canadian control. The Western Canadian provinces other than British Columbia were established from areas of the Northwest Territories: Manitoba established as a province of Canada in 1870, following the enacting of the Manitoba Act. British Columbia: Under terms that Canada would absorb the colony's debt, would begin to subsidize public work, would begin to construct a railway allowing travel from British Columbia to Ontario, British Columbia agreed to join Canadian confederation in 1871.
Saskatchewan: Established as province in 1905, with the implementation of the Saskatchewan Act. Alberta: In 1905, the same year as Saskatchewan, Alberta was established as province. Just like Saskatchewan had the Saskatchewan Act, Alberta had the Alberta Act; as of the 2016 Census, the total population of Western Canada was nearly 11.1 million, including 4.65 million in British Columbia, 4.07 million in Alberta, 1.1 million in Saskatchewan, 1.28 million in Manitoba. This represents 31.5% of Canada's population. While Vancouver serves as the largest metropolitan area in Western Canada at nearly 2.5 million people, Calgary serves as the largest municipality at over 1.2 million people. As of the 2016 Census, Statistics Canada recognized ten census metropolitan areas within Western Canada, including four in British Columbia, three in Alberta, two in Saskatchewan, one in Manitoba; the following is a list of these areas and their populations as of 2016. From 2011 to 2016, the fastest growing CMAs in the country were the five located in Alberta and Saskatchewan: Calgary, Saskatoon and Lethbridge.
These were the only CMAs in the country to register growth over 10%. The three fastest growing CMAs - Calgary and Saskatoon - were unchanged from the previous intercensal period. Western Canada consists of the country's four westernmost provinces: British Columbia, Alberta and Manitoba, it covers 2.9 million square kilometres – 29% of Canada's land area. British Columbia adjoins the Pacific Ocean to the west, while Manitoba has a coastline on Hudson Bay in its northeast of the province. Both Alberta and Saskatchewan are landlocked between British Manitoba; the Canadian Prairies are part of a vast sedimentary plain covering much of Alberta, southern Saskatchewan, southwestern Manitoba. The prairies form a significant portion of the land area of Western Canada; the plains describes the expanses of flat, arable agricultural land which sustain extensive grain farming operations in the southern part of the provinces. Despite this, some areas such as the Cypress Hills and Alberta Badlands are quite hilly and the prairie provinces contain large areas of forest such as the Mid-Continental Canadian forests.
In Alberta and British Columbia, the Canadian Cordillera is bounded by the Rocky Mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. The Canadian Rockies are part of a major continental divide that extends north and south through western North America and western South America; the continental divide defines much of the border between Alberta and British Columbia. The Columbia and the Fraser Rivers have their headwaters in the Canadian Rockies and are the second- and third-largest rivers to drain to the west coast of North America. To the west of their headwaters, across the Rocky Mountain Trench, is a second belt of mountains, the Columbia Mountains, comprising the Selkirk, Purcell and Cariboo Mountains sub-ranges; the coast of British Columbia enjoys a moderate oceanic climate because of the influence of the Pacific Ocean, with temperatures similar to those of the British Isles. Winters are wet and summers dry; these areas enjoy the mildest winter weather in all of Canada, as temperatures fall much below the freezing mark.
The mountainous Interior of the province is drier
Bureau of Land Management
The Bureau of Land Management is an agency within the United States Department of the Interior that administers more than 247.3 million acres of public lands in the United States which constitutes one eighth of the landmass of the country. President Harry S. Truman created the BLM in 1946 by combining two existing agencies: the General Land Office and the Grazing Service; the agency manages the federal government's nearly 700 million acres of subsurface mineral estate located beneath federal and private lands severed from their surface rights by the Homestead Act of 1862. Most BLM public lands are located in these 12 western states: Alaska, California, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming; the mission of the BLM is "to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations." BLM holdings were described as "land nobody wanted" because homesteaders had passed them by. All the same, ranchers hold nearly 18,000 permits and leases for livestock grazing on 155 million acres of BLM public lands.
The agency manages 221 wilderness areas, 27 national monuments and some 636 other protected areas as part of the National Conservation Lands, totaling about 36 million acres. In addition the National Conservation Lands include nearly 2,400 miles of Wild and Scenic Rivers, nearly 6,000 miles of National Scenic and Historic Trails. There are more than 63,000 gas wells on BLM public lands. Total energy leases generated $5.4 billion in 2013, an amount divided among the Treasury, the states, Native American groups. The BLM's roots go back to the Land Ordinance of 1785 and the Northwest Ordinance of 1787; these laws provided for the survey and settlement of the lands that the original 13 colonies ceded to the federal government after the American Revolution. As additional lands were acquired by the United States from Spain and other countries, the United States Congress directed that they be explored and made available for settlement. During the Revolutionary War, military bounty land was promised to soldiers who fought for the colonies.
After the war, the Treaty of Paris of 1783, signed by the United States, England and Spain, ceded territory to the United States. In the 1780s, other states relinquished their own claims to land in modern-day Ohio. By this time, the United States needed revenue to function. Land was sold. In order to sell the land, surveys needed to be conducted; the Land Ordinance of 1785 instructed a geographer to oversee this work as undertaken by a group of surveyors. The first years of surveying were completed by error. In 1812, Congress established the General Land Office as part of the Department of the Treasury to oversee the disposition of these federal lands. By the early 1800s, promised bounty land claims were fulfilled. Over the years, other bounty land and homestead laws were enacted to dispose of federal land. Several different types of patents existed; these include cash entry, homestead, military warrants, mineral certificates, private land claims, state selections, town sites, town lots. A system of local land offices spread throughout the territories, patenting land, surveyed via the corresponding Office of the Surveyor General of a particular territory.
This pattern spread across the entire United States. The laws that spurred this system with the exception of the General Mining Law of 1872 and the Desert Land Act of 1877 have since been repealed or superseded. In the early 20th century, Congress took additional steps toward recognizing the value of the assets on public lands and directed the Executive Branch to manage activities on the remaining public lands; the Mineral Leasing Act of 1920 allowed leasing and production of selected commodities, such as coal, oil and sodium to take place on public lands. The Taylor Grazing Act of 1934 established the United States Grazing Service to manage the public rangelands by establishment of advisory boards that set grazing fees; the Oregon and California Revested Lands Sustained Yield Management Act of 1937 referred as the O&C Act, required sustained yield management of the timberlands in western Oregon. In 1946, the Grazing Service was merged with the General Land Office to form the Bureau of Land Management within the Department of the Interior.
It took several years for this new agency to reorganize. In the end, the Bureau of Land Management became less focused on land disposal and more focused on the long term management and preservation of the land; the agency achieved its current form by combining offices in the western states and creating a corresponding office for lands both east of and alongside the Mississippi River. As a matter of course, the BLM's emphasis fell on activities in the western states as most of the mining, land sales, federally owned areas are located west of the Mississippi. BLM personnel on the ground have been oriented toward local interests, while bureau management in Washington are led by presidential guidance. By means of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, Congress created a more unified bureau mission and recognized the value of the remaining public lands by declaring that these lands would remain in public ownership; the law directed that these lands be managed with a view toward "multiple use" defined as "management of the public lands and their various resource values so that th
Mexico the United Mexican States, is a country in the southern portion of North America. It is bordered to the north by the United States. Covering 2,000,000 square kilometres, the nation is the fifth largest country in the Americas by total area and the 13th largest independent state in the world. With an estimated population of over 120 million people, the country is the eleventh most populous state and the most populous Spanish-speaking state in the world, while being the second most populous nation in Latin America after Brazil. Mexico is a federation comprising 31 states and Mexico City, a special federal entity, the capital city and its most populous city. Other metropolises in the state include Guadalajara, Puebla, Tijuana and León. Pre-Columbian Mexico dates to about 8000 BC and is identified as one of five cradles of civilization and was home to many advanced Mesoamerican civilizations such as the Olmec, Teotihuacan, Zapotec and Aztec before first contact with Europeans. In 1521, the Spanish Empire conquered and colonized the territory from its politically powerful base in Mexico-Tenochtitlan, administered as the viceroyalty of New Spain.
Three centuries the territory became a nation state following its recognition in 1821 after the Mexican War of Independence. The post-independence period was tumultuous, characterized by economic inequality and many contrasting political changes; the Mexican–American War led to a territorial cession of the extant northern territories to the United States. The Pastry War, the Franco-Mexican War, a civil war, two empires, the Porfiriato occurred in the 19th century; the Porfiriato was ended by the start of the Mexican Revolution in 1910, which culminated with the promulgation of the 1917 Constitution and the emergence of the country's current political system as a federal, democratic republic. Mexico has the 11th largest by purchasing power parity; the Mexican economy is linked to those of its 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement partners the United States. In 1994, Mexico became the first Latin American member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, it is classified as an upper-middle income country by the World Bank and a newly industrialized country by several analysts.
The country is considered both a regional power and a middle power, is identified as an emerging global power. Due to its rich culture and history, Mexico ranks first in the Americas and seventh in the world for number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Mexico is an ecologically megadiverse country, ranking fourth in the world for its biodiversity. Mexico receives a huge number of tourists every year: in 2018, it was the sixth most-visited country in the world, with 39 million international arrivals. Mexico is a member of the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the G8+5, the G20, the Uniting for Consensus group of the UN, the Pacific Alliance trade bloc. Mēxihco is the Nahuatl term for the heartland of the Aztec Empire, namely the Valley of Mexico and surrounding territories, with its people being known as the Mexica, it is believed to be a toponym for the valley which became the primary ethnonym for the Aztec Triple Alliance as a result, although it could have been the other way around.
In the colonial era, back when Mexico was called New Spain this territory became the Intendency of Mexico and after New Spain achieved independence from the Spanish Empire it came to be known as the State of Mexico with the new country being named after its capital: the City of Mexico, which itself was founded in 1524 on top of the ancient Mexica capital of Mexico-Tenochtitlan. Traditionally, the name Tenochtitlan was thought to come from Nahuatl tetl and nōchtli and is thought to mean "Among the prickly pears rocks". However, one attestation in the late 16th-century manuscript known as "the Bancroft dialogues" suggests the second vowel was short, so that the true etymology remains uncertain; the suffix -co is the Nahuatl locative, making the word a place name. Beyond that, the etymology is uncertain, it has been suggested that it is derived from Mextli or Mēxihtli, a secret name for the god of war and patron of the Mexica, Huitzilopochtli, in which case Mēxihco means "place where Huitzilopochtli lives".
Another hypothesis suggests that Mēxihco derives from a portmanteau of the Nahuatl words for "moon" and navel. This meaning might refer to Tenochtitlan's position in the middle of Lake Texcoco; the system of interconnected lakes, of which Texcoco formed the center, had the form of a rabbit, which the Mesoamericans pareidolically associated with the moon rabbit. Still another hypothesis suggests that the word is derived from Mēctli, the name of the goddess of maguey; the name of the city-state was transliterated to Spanish as México with the phonetic value of the letter x in Medieval Spanish, which represented the voiceless postalveolar fricative. This sound, as well as the voiced postalveolar fricative, represented by a j, evolved into a voiceless velar fricative during the 16th century; this led to the use of the variant Méjico in many publications in Spanish, most notably in Spain, whereas in Mexico and most other Spanish–speaking countries, México was the preferred spelling. In recent years, the Real Academia Española, which regulates the Spanish l
Spain the Kingdom of Spain, is a country located in Europe. Its continental European territory is situated on the Iberian Peninsula, its territory includes two archipelagoes: the Canary Islands off the coast of Africa, the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea. The African enclaves of Ceuta, Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera make Spain the only European country to have a physical border with an African country. Several small islands in the Alboran Sea are part of Spanish territory; the country's mainland is bordered to the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea except for a small land boundary with Gibraltar. With an area of 505,990 km2, Spain is the largest country in Southern Europe, the second largest country in Western Europe and the European Union, the fourth largest country in the European continent. By population, Spain is the fifth in the European Union. Spain's capital and largest city is Madrid. Modern humans first arrived in the Iberian Peninsula around 35,000 years ago. Iberian cultures along with ancient Phoenician, Greek and Carthaginian settlements developed on the peninsula until it came under Roman rule around 200 BCE, after which the region was named Hispania, based on the earlier Phoenician name Spn or Spania.
At the end of the Western Roman Empire the Germanic tribal confederations migrated from Central Europe, invaded the Iberian peninsula and established independent realms in its western provinces, including the Suebi and Vandals. The Visigoths would forcibly integrate all remaining independent territories in the peninsula, including Byzantine provinces, into the Kingdom of Toledo, which more or less unified politically and all the former Roman provinces or successor kingdoms of what was documented as Hispania. In the early eighth century the Visigothic Kingdom fell to the Moors of the Umayyad Islamic Caliphate, who arrived to rule most of the peninsula in the year 726, leaving only a handful of small Christian realms in the north and lasting up to seven centuries in the Kingdom of Granada; this led to many wars during a long reconquering period across the Iberian Peninsula, which led to the creation of the Kingdom of Leon, Kingdom of Castile, Kingdom of Aragon and Kingdom of Navarre as the main Christian kingdoms to face the invasion.
Following the Moorish conquest, Europeans began a gradual process of retaking the region known as the Reconquista, which by the late 15th century culminated in the emergence of Spain as a unified country under the Catholic Monarchs. Until Aragon had been an independent kingdom, which had expanded toward the eastern Mediterranean, incorporating Sicily and Naples, had competed with Genoa and Venice. In the early modern period, Spain became the world's first global empire and the most powerful country in the world, leaving a large cultural and linguistic legacy that includes more than 570 million Hispanophones, making Spanish the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese. During the Golden Age there were many advancements in the arts, with world-famous painters such as Diego Velázquez; the most famous Spanish literary work, Don Quixote, was published during the Golden Age. Spain hosts the world's third-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Spain is a secular parliamentary democracy and a parliamentary monarchy, with King Felipe VI as head of state.
It is a major developed country and a high income country, with the world's fourteenth largest economy by nominal GDP and sixteenth largest by purchasing power parity. It is a member of the United Nations, the European Union, the Eurozone, the Council of Europe, the Organization of Ibero-American States, the Union for the Mediterranean, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the Schengen Area, the World Trade Organization and many other international organisations. While not an official member, Spain has a "Permanent Invitation" to the G20 summits, participating in every summit, which makes Spain a de facto member of the group; the origins of the Roman name Hispania, from which the modern name España was derived, are uncertain due to inadequate evidence, although it is documented that the Phoenicians and Carthaginians referred to the region as Spania, therefore the most accepted etymology is a Semitic-Phoenician one.
Down the centuries there have been a number of accounts and hypotheses: The Renaissance scholar Antonio de Nebrija proposed that the word Hispania evolved from the Iberian word Hispalis, meaning "city of the western world". Jesús Luis Cunchillos argues that the root of the term span is the Phoenician word spy, meaning "to forge metals". Therefore, i-spn-ya would mean "the land where metals are forged", it may be a derivation of the Phoenician I-Shpania, meaning "island of rabbits", "land of rabbits" or "edge", a reference to Spain's location at the end of the Mediterranean. The word in question means "Hyrax" due to Phoenicians confusing the two animals. Hispania may derive from the poetic use of the term Hesperia, reflecting the Greek perception of Italy as a "western land" or "land of the setting sun" (Hesperia
Irrigation is the application of controlled amounts of water to plants at needed intervals. Irrigation helps to grow agricultural crops, maintain landscapes, revegetate disturbed soils in dry areas and during periods of less than average rainfall. Irrigation has other uses in crop production, including frost protection, suppressing weed growth in grain fields and preventing soil consolidation. In contrast, agriculture that relies only on direct rainfall is referred to as rain-fed or dry land farming. Irrigation systems are used for cooling livestock, dust suppression, disposal of sewage, in mining. Irrigation is studied together with drainage, the removal of surface and sub-surface water from a given area. Irrigation has been a central feature of agriculture for over 5,000 years and is the product of many cultures, it was the basis for economies and societies across the globe, from Asia to the Southwestern United States. Archaeological investigation has found evidence of irrigation in areas lacking sufficient natural rainfall to support crops for rainfed agriculture.
The earliest known use of the technology dates to the 6th millennium BCE in Khuzistan in the south-west of present-day Iran. Irrigation was used as a means of manipulation of water in the alluvial plains of the Indus valley civilization, the application of it is estimated to have begun around 4500 BC and drastically increased the size and prosperity of their agricultural settlements; the Indus Valley Civilization developed sophisticated irrigation and water-storage systems, including artificial reservoirs at Girnar dated to 3000 BCE, an early canal irrigation system from c. 2600 BCE. Large-scale agriculture was practiced, with an extensive network of canals used for the purpose of irrigation. Farmers in the Mesopotamian plain used irrigation from at least the third millennium BCE, they developed perennial irrigation watering crops throughout the growing season by coaxing water through a matrix of small channels formed in the field. Ancient Egyptians practiced basin irrigation using the flooding of the Nile to inundate land plots, surrounded by dykes.
The flood water remained until the fertile sediment had settled before the engineers returned the surplus to the watercourse. There is evidence of the ancient Egyptian pharaoh Amenemhet III in the twelfth dynasty using the natural lake of the Faiyum Oasis as a reservoir to store surpluses of water for use during dry seasons; the lake swelled annually from the flooding of the Nile. The Ancient Nubians developed a form of irrigation by using a waterwheel-like device called a sakia. Irrigation began in Nubia some time between the third and second millennia BCE, it depended upon the flood waters that would flow through the Nile River and other rivers in what is now the Sudan. In sub-Saharan Africa irrigation reached the Niger River region cultures and civilizations by the first or second millennium BCE and was based on wet-season flooding and water harvesting. Evidence of terrace irrigation occurs in pre-Columbian America, early Syria and China. In the Zana Valley of the Andes Mountains in Peru, archaeologists have found remains of three irrigation canals radiocarbon-dated from the 4th millennium BCE, the 3rd millennium BCE and the 9th century CE.
These canals provide the earliest record of irrigation in the New World. Traces of a canal dating from the 5th millennium BCE were found under the 4th-millennium canal. Ancient Persia used irrigation as far back as the 6th millennium BCE to grow barley in areas with insufficient natural rainfall; the Qanats, developed in ancient Persia about 800 BCE, are among the oldest known irrigation methods still in use today. They are now found in the Middle East and North Africa; the system comprises a network of vertical wells and sloping tunnels driven into the sides of cliffs and of steep hills to tap groundwater. The noria, a water wheel with clay pots around the rim powered by the flow of the stream, first came into use at about this time among Roman settlers in North Africa. By 150 BCE the pots were fitted with valves to allow smoother filling as they were forced into the water; the irrigation works of ancient Sri Lanka, the earliest dating from about 300 BCE in the reign of King Pandukabhaya, under continuous development for the next thousand years, were one of the most complex irrigation systems of the ancient world.
In addition to underground canals, the Sinhalese were the first to build artificial reservoirs to store water. These reservoirs and canal systems were used to irrigate paddy fields, which require a lot of water to cultivate. Most of these irrigation systems still exist undamaged up to now, in Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa, because of the advanced and precise engineering; the system was further extended during the reign of King Parakrama Bahu. The oldest known hydraulic engineers of China were Sunshu Ao of the Spring and Autumn period and Ximen Bao of the Warring States period, both of whom worked on large irrigation projects. In the Sichuan region belonging to the state of Qin of ancient China, the Dujiangyan Irrigation System devised by the Qin Chinese hydrologist and irrigation engineer Li Bing was built in 256 BCE to irrigate a vast area of farmland that today still supplies water. By the 2nd century AD, during the Han Dynasty, the Chinese used chain pumps which lifted water from a lower elevation to a higher one.
These were powered by manual foot-pedal, hydraulic waterwheels, or rotating mechanical wheels pulled by oxen. The water was used for public works, providing water for urban residential quarters and palace gardens, bu
Western is a genre of various arts which tell stories set in the latter half of the 19th century in the American Old West centering on the life of a nomadic cowboy or gunfighter armed with a revolver and a rifle who rides a horse. Cowboys and gunslingers wear Stetson hats, neckerchief bandannas, spurs, cowboy boots and buckskins. Recurring characters include the aforementioned cowboys, Native Americans, lawmen, bounty hunters, gamblers and settlers; the ambience is punctuated with a Western music score, including American and Mexican folk music such as country, Native American music, New Mexico music, rancheras. Westerns stress the harshness of the wilderness and set the action in an arid, desolate landscape of deserts and mountains; the vast landscape plays an important role, presenting a "...mythic vision of the plains and deserts of the American West". Specific settings include ranches, small frontier towns, saloons and isolated military forts of the Wild West. Common plots include: The construction of a telegraph line on the wild frontier.
Ranchers protecting their family ranch from rustlers or large landowners or who build a ranch empire. Revenge stories, which hinge on the chase and pursuit by someone, wronged. Stories about cavalry fighting Native Americans. Outlaw gang plots. Stories about a lawman or bounty hunter tracking down his quarry. Many Westerns use a stock plot of depicting a crime showing the pursuit of the wrongdoer, ending in revenge and retribution, dispensed through a shootout or quick-draw duel; the Western was the most popular Hollywood genre from the early 20th century to the 1960s. Western films first became well-attended in the 1930s. John Ford's landmark Western adventure Stagecoach became one of the biggest hits in 1939 and it made John Wayne a mainstream screen star; the popularity of Westerns continued with the release of classics such as Red River. Westerns were popular throughout the 1950s and 1960s. Many of the most acclaimed Westerns were released during this time, including High Noon, The Searchers, Cat Ballou, The Wild Bunch and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
Classic Westerns such as these have been the inspiration for various films about Western-type characters in contemporary settings, such as Junior Bonner, set in the 1970s, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, set in the 21st century. The Western genre sometimes portrays the conquest of the wilderness and the subordination of nature in the name of civilization or the confiscation of the territorial rights of the original, Native American, inhabitants of the frontier; the Western depicts a society organized around codes of honor and personal, direct or private justice–"frontier justice"–dispensed by gunfights. These honor codes are played out through depictions of feuds or individuals seeking personal revenge or retribution against someone who has wronged them; this Western depiction of personal justice contrasts with justice systems organized around rationalistic, abstract law that exist in cities, in which social order is maintained predominately through impersonal institutions such as courtrooms.
The popular perception of the Western is a story that centers on the life of a semi-nomadic wanderer a cowboy or a gunfighter. A showdown or duel at high noon featuring two or more gunfighters is a stereotypical scene in the popular conception of Westerns. In some ways, such protagonists may be considered the literary descendants of the knight errant which stood at the center of earlier extensive genres such as the Arthurian Romances. Like the cowboy or gunfighter of the Western, the knight errant of the earlier European tales and poetry was wandering from place to place on his horse, fighting villains of various kinds and bound to no fixed social structures but only to their own innate code of honor, and like knights errant, the heroes of Westerns rescue damsels in distress. The wandering protagonists of Westerns share many characteristics with the ronin in modern Japanese culture; the Western takes these elements and uses them to tell simple morality tales, although some notable examples are more morally ambiguous.
Westerns stress the harshness and isolation of the wilderness and set the action in an arid, desolate landscape. Western films have specific settings such as isolated ranches, Native American villages, or small frontier towns with a saloon. Oftentimes, these settings appear deserted and without much structure. Apart from the wilderness, it is the saloon that emphasizes that this is the Wild West: it is the place to go for music, gambling, drinking and shooting. In some Westerns, where civilization has arrived, the town has a church, a general store, a bank and a school; the American Film Institute defines Western films as those "set in the American West that the spirit, the struggle and the demise of the new frontier." The term Western, used to describe a narrative film genre, appears to have originated with a July 1912 article in Motion Picture World magazine. Most of the characteristics of Western films were part of 19th-century popular Western