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Roman Britain

Roman Britain was the area of the island of Great Britain, governed by the Roman Empire, from 43 to 410 AD. It comprised the whole of England and Wales and, for a short period, southern Scotland. Julius Caesar invaded Britain in 54 BC as part of his Gallic Wars. According to Caesar, the Britons had been overrun or culturally assimilated by other Celtic tribes during the British Iron Age and had been aiding Caesar's enemies, he received tribute, installed the friendly king Mandubracius over the Trinovantes, returned to Gaul. Planned invasions under Augustus were called off in 34, 27, 25 BC. In 40 AD, Caligula assembled 200,000 men at the Channel on the continent, only to have them gather seashells according to Suetonius as a symbolic gesture to proclaim Caligula's victory over the sea. Three years Claudius directed four legions to invade Britain and restore the exiled king Verica over the Atrebates; the Romans defeated the Catuvellauni, organized their conquests as the Province of Britain. By the year 47, the Romans held the lands southeast of the Fosse Way.

Control over Wales was delayed by reverses and the effects of Boudica's uprising, but the Romans expanded northward. The conquest of Britain continued under command of Gnaeus Julius Agricola, who expanded the Roman Empire as far as Caledonia. In the summer of 84, Agricola faced the armies of the Caledonians, led by Calgacus, at the Battle of Mons Graupius. Battle casualties were estimated by Tacitus to be upwards of 10,000 on the Caledonian side and about 360 on the Roman side; the bloodbath at Mons Graupius concluded the forty-year conquest of Britain, a period that saw between 100,000 and 250,000 Britons killed. In the context of pre-industrial warfare and of a total population of Britain of c.2 million, these are high figures. Under the 2nd-century emperors Hadrian and Antoninus Pius, two walls were built to defend the Roman province from the Caledonians, whose realms in the Scottish Highlands were never controlled. Around 197, the Severan Reforms divided Britain into two provinces: Britannia Superior and Britannia Inferior.

During the Diocletian Reforms, at the end of the 3rd century, Britannia was divided into four provinces under the direction of a vicarius, who administered the Diocese of the Britains. A fifth province, Valentia, is attested in the 4th century. For much of the period of the Roman occupation, Britannia was subject to barbarian invasions and came under the control of imperial usurpers and imperial pretenders; the final Roman withdrawal from Britain occurred around 410. Following the conquest of the Britons, a distinctive Romano-British culture emerged as the Romans introduced improved agriculture, urban planning, industrial production, architecture; the Roman goddess Britannia became the female personification of Britain. After the initial invasions, Roman historians only mention Britain in passing. Thus, most present knowledge derives from archaeological investigations and occasional epigraphic evidence lauding the Britannic achievements of an emperor. Roman citizens settled in Britain from many parts of the Empire.

Britain was known to the Classical world. The Greeks referred to the Cassiterides, or "tin islands", placed them near the west coast of Europe; the Carthaginian sailor Himilco is said to have visited the island in the 6th or 5th century BC and the Greek explorer Pytheas in the 4th. It was regarded with some writers refusing to believe it existed at all; the first direct Roman contact was when Julius Caesar undertook two expeditions in 55 and 54 BC, as part of his conquest of Gaul, believing the Britons were helping the Gallic resistance. The first expedition was more a reconnaissance than a full invasion and gained a foothold on the coast of Kent but was unable to advance further because of storm damage to the ships and a lack of cavalry. Despite the military failure it was a political success, with the Roman Senate declaring a 20-day public holiday in Rome to honour the unprecedented achievement of obtaining hostages from Britain and defeating Belgian tribes on returning to the continent; the second invasion involved a larger force and Caesar coerced or invited many of the native Celtic tribes to pay tribute and give hostages in return for peace.

A friendly local king, was installed, his rival, was brought to terms. Hostages were taken, but historians disagree over whether any tribute was paid after Caesar returned to Gaul. Caesar conquered no territory and left no troops behind but he established clients and brought Britain into Rome's sphere of influence. Augustus planned invasions in 34, 27 and 25 BC, but circumstances were never favourable, the relationship between Britain and Rome settled into one of diplomacy and trade. Strabo, writing late in Augustus's reign, claimed that taxes on trade brought in more annual revenue than any conquest could. Archaeology shows. Strabo mentions British kings who sent embassies to Augustus and Augustus's own Res Gestae refers to two British kings he received as refugees; when some of Tiberius's ships were carried to Britain in a storm during his campaigns in Germany in 16 AD, they came back with tales of monsters. Rome appears to have encouraged a balance of power in southern Britain, supporting two powerful kingdoms: the Catuvellauni, ruled by the descendants of Tasciovanus, the Atrebates, ruled by the descendants of Commius.

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Renata Veseck√°

Renata Vesecká was serving as State Attorney for the Czech Republic since 2005 until 2010. Vesecká served as District State Attorney for Hradec Králové in eastern Bohemia, she became Acting Supreme State Attorney in 2005, following the recall of the previous incumbent Marie Benešová after several disagreements with justice minister Pavel Němec. Vesecká was appointed formally to the role on November 9, 2005. On her appointment, Vesecká pledged to concentrate on the handling of bankruptcy and terrorism cases, implement investigations into past war crimes, to increase the number of state attorneys in the state's employ. In 2009 the opposition Czech Social Democratic Party and the Green Party both demanded that Vesecká leave her post, citing concerns over the failed prosecution of Jiří Čunek, former deputy prime minister and chairman of the KDU-CSL party. Čunek had faced charages of corruption over an alleged 500,000-koruna bribe from the H&B Real Estate company, but his case was thrown out in late 2007.

The dismissal of Čunek's case had in turn been criticized by Adam Basny, the District State Attorney for Liberec, whom Vesecká had fired. Basny's dismissal prompted criticism from outside the Czech Republic and within: Transparency International, a corruption watchdog, said that if the state attorney's office was prepared to fire dissenters within its own ranks, it might next pursue opponents in wider Czech society. Vesecká faced criticism from her predecessor Benesova, who accused Vesecká of membership in a "judiciary mafia"; the two opposition parties insisted that without Vesecká's departure they would not support the governing coalition, which had fallen following a vote of no confidence in its handling of the ongoing global financial crisis, but was expected to continue governing until an early election in October 2009. The Czech Association of State Attorneys in March 2009 called on Vesecká to leave, but the governing Civic Democrats rejected calls for her removal. Vesecka has been referred to as "she is going to go to jail" by Kristyna Koci, as she was being secretly taped in the Spring 2011, trying to split her own party VV by performing a coup based on bribery accusations with the help of Petr Tluchor and some other Civic Democtrats

Shedd-Porter Memorial Library

The Shedd-Porter Memorial Library, located at 3 Main Street, is the public library of Alstead, New Hampshire. The library building was a gift to the town from John Graves Shedd and Mary Roenna Shedd, is a Beaux Arts building built in 1910 to a design by William H. McLean and Albert H. Wright. Shedd donated 2,000 books to the library, whose collection now exceeds 10,000 volumes; the library building, one of the finest of the period in the state, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2010. The library stands in the village center of Alstead, on about 0.5 acres on the west side of Main Street just south of the Cold River. It is a imposing masonry structure, built out of granite with Classical Revival details, it is symmetrical and rectangular in shape, with projecting pavilions at the centers of the front and rear facades, a domed roof at its center. Large windows flank the front pavilion, which houses the main entrance in an elaborate surround with Ionic columns, an elaborate entablature and pedimented gable.

The interior follows a typical plan for early 20th-century libraries, with an entry vestibule in the front pavilion, a central librarian's desk, reading rooms to either side. The pavilion to the rear houses book stacks; the building's basement housed a small auditorium, re-adapted for use as a children's collection and reading room. The library building was the gift of John Graves Shedd, chief executive of Marshall Field & Company and an Alstead native, his wife Mary Roenna Shedd, a native of Langdon, was given in memory of their parents. National Register of Historic Places listings in Cheshire County, New Hampshire