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Spinifex (plant)

Spinifex is a genus of perennial coastal plants in the grass family. They are one of the most common plants that grow in sand dunes along the coasts of Africa, Middle East, Australia, New Zealand and New Caledonia, with the ranges of some species extending north and west along the coasts of Asia as far as India and Japan; as they help stabilise the sand, these grasses are an important part of the entire sand dune ecosystem. The single species indigenous to New Zealand, Spinifex sericeus, is found in Australia. Confusingly, the word "spinifex" is used as a common name referring to grasses in the related genus Triodia. Triodia however is native to inland Australia and refers to a group of spiny-leaved, tussock-forming grasses. SpeciesSpinifex × alterniflorus Nees - Western Australia Spinifex hirsutus Labill. - all 6 states of Australia Spinifex littoreus Merr. - Ashmore Reef in Western Australia. Br. - Thailand, New Guinea, Northern Territory, Western Australia, South Australia Spinifex sericeus R.

Br. - all 6 states of Australia plus Norfolk Island, New Zealand, New Caledonia, Tongaformerly includedSpinifex paradoxus - Zygochloa paradoxa


Kleinfontein is a new settlement near Pretoria, South Africa, founded by Afrikaners in 1992 as a cultural village. It has only been developed and has a limited economy, it was founded by descendants of the original Voortrekkers or Boers, who seek self-determination in an autonomous Volkstaat. The criteria to live in Kleinfontein are based on cultural, linguistic and religious beliefs and its people associate themselves with the Voortrekker history, the Blood River Covenant and other "historical facts relating to our struggle for independence for the Afrikaner people"; as of 2012, it was one of South Africa's few remaining whites-only settlements. The settlement has been recognised as a cultural community by the Gauteng Legislature; the land which would become Kleinfontein came to the attention of Afrikaner activists in 1988 during a celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Great Trek on a farm east of Pretoria. The farm drew their attention as a location of the Bittereinders and site of the Battle of Diamond Hill, as well as holding a historic Boer War cemetery and memorial.

When the farm was put up for sale in 1992, a group of 50 Afrikaners purchased the property, began to recruit shareholders to develop it. In 1994, sufficient shareholders were recruited to service the loan and Kleinfontein could begin to provide services; the first two permanent houses were completed in 1996, the first two families became permanent residents of Kleinfontein. In the ensuing years, Radio Pretoria erected its broadcasting tower on Kleinfontein, sports fields were built, a homegrown school was established and a savings and credit cooperative had emerged. A community hall, care center and retirement homes followed as well as a shopping center with an ATM; the entrance to the town displays a bust of Hendrik Verwoerd, the "father of apartheid". As of 2013, the population of Kleinfontein is about 900 Afrikaners during the day, of which about 650 are residents and about 400 are shareholders. Kleinfontein's area has grown from the original 500 hectares to the current 860 hectares, stretches just off the N4 highway beyond the Boschkop road.

As of November 2013, the Gauteng legislature recognised Kleinfontein as a cultural community. The City of Pretoria still refused to declare it a separate development or a formal township, although there is an ongoing process for Kleinfontein to become a separate recognised entity within the City of Pretoria. Following the legislature's investigation into Kleinfontein, there were 450 shareholders and 1,000 residents, living in around 300 homes. Article 185 of the South African Constitution allows citizens of a similar cultural, linguistic, or religious group to associate with each other; the settlement consists of a undivided property. The ownership of individual residents is by internal agreement alone, as no legal arrangements have been made. Van Wyk reports that two categories of inhabitants can be distinguished: older, retired people and younger middle-class professionals. Owing to disagreements between the groups on which direction the community should take, the community became paralyzed by conflict, bringing growth to a standstill.

Kleinfontein has been criticised for its policy of barring all non ethnically Dutch, non-Afrikaans speakers from settling in the community. Protests were held in May 2013 when the community denied the application of a black man to buy a home in the community; the community has been criticised by the South African government for engaging in practices that once led to a "divided South Africa." Residents of the community defend their practice by saying that they are defending their own separate cultural identity. Some residents of the community have objected to the "restricted" nature of the community which prevents them from selling their home to the buyer of their choice; the town is located halfway between Pretoria and Bronkhorstspruit. It lies just south of the N4, just west of the R515, a few kilometers south of Rayton, on the Magaliesberg mountain range at the historical terrain where the Battle of Diamond Hill took place during the Second Boer War. Orania, Northern Cape, another Afrikaner-based community Balmoral, Mpumalanga Official website

Longhua Temple

The Longhua Temple is a Buddhist temple dedicated to the Maitreya Buddha in Shanghai. Although most of the present day buildings date from reconstructions, the temple preserves the architectural design of a Song dynasty monastery of the Chan School, it is the largest, most complete ancient temple complex in the city of Shanghai. The temple was first built during the Three Kingdoms Period. According to a legend, Sun Quan, King of the Kingdom of Wu, had obtained Sharira relics, which are cremated remains of the Buddha. To house these precious relics, the king ordered the construction of 13 pagodas. Longhua Pagoda, part of the Longhua temple complex, is said to have been one of them. Like the function of the pagoda, the name of the temple has its origin in a local legend according to which a dragon once appeared on the site; the temple was destroyed by war towards the end of the Tang dynasty and rebuilt in 977 AD, under the autonomous Kingdom of Wuyue during the Northern Song dynasty period. In the Song dynasty, in 1064, it was renamed "Kongxiang Temple", but the original name "Longhua Temple" was restored in the Ming dynasty during the reign of the Wanli Emperor.

The present architectural design follows the Song dynasty original. However, whereas the core of the present Longhua Pagoda survives from that period, most buildings in the temple proper were rebuilt during the reigns of the Tongzhi Emperor and the Guangxu Emperor in the Qing dynasty. A modern restoration of the entire temple complex was carried out in 1954; the temple and monastery were surrounded by extensive gardens and orchards. Viewing of the peach blossom in the Longhua gardens was an annual attraction for people in surrounding cities; the temple grounds have been used as a site for internment as well as for executions. Public executions were held on the site in the 20th century. In 1927, the Kuomintang carried out a purge of suspected communists in Shanghai. Thousands of victims of this purge were brought to the temple grounds to be executed, they are commemorated today by the Longhua Martyrs Cemetery behind the temple. During the Second Sino-Japanese War, the Japanese operated their largest civilian internment camp in the area, where American, British, as well as nationals of other allied countries were held under poor conditions.

The temple's extensive gardens have since been entirely absorbed into the neighboring Longhua Martyrs' Cemetery and have been extensively reconstructed in a contemporary monumental style. A small traditional garden remains adjacent to the temple buildings; the Longhua Temple occupies an area of more than 20,000 square meters and the main axis of the compound is 194 meters long. The tallest structure is the Longhua Pagoda; the layout of the temple is that of a Song dynasty monastery of the Buddhist Chan sect, known as the Sangharama Five-Hall Style. Five main halls are arranged along a central north-south pointing axis. From the entrance, the buildings are: The Maitreya Hall housing a statue of Maitreya buddha and another in his manifestation as "Budai", or Cloth bag monk; the Four Heavenly Kings Hall housing statues of the Four Heavenly Kings. The Mahavira Hall is housing statues of the historical Buddha and two disciples. At the back of the hall is a bas-relief carving, including a depiction of Guanyin, or the Buddistava Avalokiteśvara in his female manifestation.

Around the front portion are arranged the twenty Guardians of Buddhist Law, around the back the sixteen principal arhats. The hall features an ancient bell cast in 1586, during the Wanli era of the Ming dynasty; the Three Sages Hall houses statues of the Amitabha buddha, the Buddistavas Avalokiteśvara and Mahāsthāmaprāpta. The Abbot's Hall is a place for formal meetings. A Bell Tower and a Drum Tower are arranged off the central axis; the Bell Tower houses a copper bell cast in 1382, the bell is 2-meter tall, has a maximum diameter of 1.3-meter, weighs 5,000-kilogram. The bell is used in the Evening Bell-Striking Ceremony conducted on New Year's Eve. Situated off the main axis is a shrine to Ksitigarbha; the Buddhist Texts Library houses various versions of Buddhist sutras and other Buddhist works, as well as ceremonial instruments and artifacts. Artworks in the temple include statues of the Maitreya Buddha in his Bodhisattva form and in his Cloth Bag Monk incarnation, statues of the Eighteen Arhats and 20 Guardians of Buddhist Law, as well as statues of the 500 arhats.

The Longhua Pagoda is best well-known of the 16 historic pagodas that still stand within the Shanghai municipality. It has an octagonal floor layout; the size of the seven stories decreases from bottom to top. The pagoda consists of a tube-like brick core surrounded by a wooden staircase. On the outside, it is decorated with balconies and upturned eaves; these outer decorations have been reconstructed in keeping with the original style. Although previous pagodas existed on the same site, the current brick base and body of the pagoda was built in 977 under the Wuyue kingdome, with continuous renovations of its more fragile wooden components on the exterior; because of its age

Chander Pahar (franchise)

Chander Pahar is an Indian Bengali language franchise consisting of novels, graphic novels and a film series. The original work is a 1937 novel named Chander Pahar, written by Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay, it was translated to English in 2002 by Santanu Sinha Choudhuri and Pradeep Kumar Sinha, published by Orient Blackswan. The English version of the novel was titled Mountain of the Moon. Bandyopadhyay’s story was adapted into a Graphic novel and a live-action film in 2013. A sequel to the 2013 film Amazon Obhijaan, written by the director of the first film Kamaleswar Mukherjee, is released in Christmas 2017; this novel tells the story of an ordinary young Bengali man, Shankar Roy Chowdhury, as he adventures in Africa in the years 1909 and 1910. After graduating from college at 20-years-old, his family's financial struggles force him take a job in a jute mill in Shyamnagar — a prospect he loathes; because loves the subject of geography, he wants to follow the footsteps of renowned explorers like Livingstone, Mungo Park, Marco Polo.

He wants to explore the wilderness, passionate for learning about African animals. By a stroke of luck, he gets a job as a clerk at the Uganda Railway and rushes to Africa without a second thought. After a few months laying rail tracks, he encounters the first of many dangers in pre-World War I Africa: a man-eating lion, he takes up a job as station-master in a desolate station amidst the Veldts, where he to narrowly escapes a deadly black mamba. While at this post, Shankar encounters and nurses Diego Alvarez, a middle-age Portuguese explorer and gold/diamond prospector. Alvarez's arrival becomes a turning point in Shankar's life. While recovering, Alvarez describes his exploits in Africa with his friend Jim Carter, he explains that, lured by the prospect of a priceless yellow diamond from a Kaafi village chief and Carter searched for these yellow diamond caves, on the Mountain of the Moon in the Richtersveld. Rumors suggested the Bunyip, guards the mine; the explorers set off into the dense jungle, much against the villagers' advice, Carter was gruesomely killed by the Bunyip.

Shankar, inspired by Alvarez's exploits, resigns from his job and accompanies Alvarez to venture again for the mines. They meet hardships, like a raging volcano, they get lost in the forests where Alvarez is killed by the Bunyip. Demoralised, Shankar tries to return to civilization, he finds the diamond mines by accident. Getting lost, he finds the remains of the Italian explorer, Attilio Gatti, learns that the cave is in fact the diamond mine. Leaving, he nearly dies of thirst, he is rescued by a survey team and taken to a hospital in Salisbury, from where he sets sail for home. Before going back, he writes his account in a newspaper, he names the volcano after Alvarez. He ends the book saying that he will return to the cave one day with a large team, continue the legacy of Alvarez and Gatti. Shankar Roy Chowdhury — The hero of the story, a young man from a village in Bengal, he is a brave person who has a penchant for adventures. Diego Alvarez — A Portuguese explorer, he is a friend and mentor to Shankar, together they explore the deepest reaches of Richtersveld for the Mountain of the Moon.

Jim Carter — A British explorer, Alvarez's companion in his previous expedition. Alvarez revealed to Shankar that Carter was killed by the Bunyip while he and Carter were exploring the Mountains of the Moon. Attilio Gatti — An Italian explorer, he discovered the diamond mine caves in c. 1879 but dies in a cave on his way back, in the hands of his traitorous followers. Moon Mountain is a 2014 Graphic novel adapted from Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay's classic Chander Pahar; the graphic novel is published by Penguin Books India, has its script written by Saurav Mohapatra with illustrations by Sayan Mukherjee Amazon Obhijaan is a 2017 Graphic novel based on the film of the same name. The graphic novel is written by film's director Kamaleswar Mukherjee, available in two languages - English and Bengali; the graphic novel acts as a promotional activity for the film. It is released on 11 November 2017. A film based on the novel, directed by Kamaleshwar Mukherjee was released on 20 December 2013; the film, poorly received by critics and the Bengali audience, was produced by Shree Venkatesh Films and has been shot on locations across Africa.

It was being made with a budget of nearly ₹150 million, making it one of the most expensive in the Bengali film industry. Director Kamaleshwar Mukherjee mentioned Chander Pahar as his "Dream Project"; the film has incorporated CGI and visual effects at par with Hollywood and Bollywood standards. Dev plays the role of Shankar. Most of the other cast members are from South Africa. According to the crew members, it took a considerable time to decide who would play the role of Diego Alvarez, South African actor Gérard Rudolf was selected; the first theatrical trailer of the film was released by Shree Venkatesh Films, at the Kolkata Nicco park on 14 November 2013. Shooting locations include Kruger National Park, the mountains of Drakensberg, the deserts of Kalahari. According to a Bengali magazine, director Kamaleshwar Mukherjee is penning the script, taking the story forward from where it left and Dev has been quoted as saying that the next location, after the African safari, will be the dense forests of Amazon rainforest.

The film has been titled Amazon Obhijan. The story of the film is original, written by Kamaleshwar Mukherjee with some character reprising th

Italian Bridge

The Italian Bridge is the bridge across the Griboedov Canal in Saint Petersburg, Russia. It is a single span, pedestrian bridge next to Italian street; the bridge's length is 19.66 meters, the width is 3 meters. The bridge was built in 1896 in the place of a boat ferry as a single span wooden bridge which connected Big and Little Italian streets; the engineer L. N. Kolpitsin was author of the project; the novelty at the time was use of xilolit plates as a paving material. In 1902 the bridge was rebuilt for the first time, around 1911-1912 it was rebuilt again. After quarter of century, in 1937 the bridge went through the capital reconstruction, in order to fit two termal pipes into it. In 1955 during the renovation of Griboedov Canal embankments the bridge was rebuilt again. Since it has its modern look. Coordinates: 59.9373°N 30.327°E / 59.9373.

Martin Russell (footballer)

Martin Christopher Russell is an Irish former professional footballer who played in the English Football League for Birmingham City, Leicester City and Middlesbrough. He played for Portadown in the Irish Football League and for St Patrick's Athletic in the League of Ireland, he managed UCD for five seasons, winning the League of Ireland First Division in 2009. He was the assistant manager of St Patrick's Athletic, until July 2014 when he took over as manager of Limerick F. C, he left Limerick by mutual consent in April 2017. He played for the Republic of Ireland national football team at the 1984 UEFA European Under-18 Football Championship and the 1985 FIFA World Youth Championship, he won four caps for the Republic of Ireland under-21 team. Russell was a midfielder and he began his football career with Belvedere, joined Manchester United from school, he spent time on loan to Birmingham City, where he made his Football League debut in 1986, Norwich City, but left United in 1987 without having played for the first team.

He went on to play for Leicester City and Middlesbrough before returning to Ireland. He played for Portadown from 1991 to 1998, in 1992 won the Northern Ireland PFA Player of the Year award. In 1998, he returned to Dublin where he played for St Patrick's Athletic, was appointed assistant manager in 2003. Russell's first experience in coaching came with St Patrick's Athletic as an assistant manager. Two years he joined UCD AFC as first-team coach assistant manager, was appointed manager in January 2009, he won the League of Ireland First Division title in his first year as manager gaining promotion to the Premier Division. He kept UCD up in that division for four more seasons before leaving the club, he gave his son Sean his League of Ireland debut in September 2010. Russell was appointed by his old club St Patrick's Athletic, as assistant manager to his ex-Pats manager Liam Buckley on 24 February 2014. In July 2014, he left St Patrick's Athletic to become the manager of struggling Premier Division side Limerick FC, who had fired manager Stuart Taylor.

Russell kept the club in the Premier Division, but Limerick were relegated the following season, losing a playoff 2–1 on aggregate to Finn Harps. Tasked with bringing the club straight back to the top flight, Russell guided Limerick to the first Division title in record time, as well as reaching the final of the EA Sports League Cup, which they lost to his old club St Patrick's Athletic. Following a poor start to the 2017 season culminating in a 0–3 home defeat by Cork City, he left Limerick by mutual consent on 3 April 2017. In April 2018, Martin was appointed by Bray Wanderers in an advisory role to caretaker manager Graham Kelly. On 8 June, Martin was appointed as first team manager at Bray after Kelly's caretaker role reached the maximum 60 day mark. However, Russell resigned on 18 July amid financial turmoil at the club; as of 18 July 2018 Portadown Irish League: 1995–96 Irish League Cup: 1995–96St Patrick's Athletic League of Ireland: 1998–99 Leinster Senior Cup: 1999–2000 UCD League of Ireland First Division: 2009St Patrick's Athletic FAI President's Cup: 2014 UCD programme v Limerick 6 March 2009 Martin Russell at Post War English & Scottish Football League A–Z Player's Database Profile with photo at Belvedere FC website