Stephen, King of England

Stephen referred to as Stephen of Blois, was King of England from 22 December 1135 to his death. He was Count of Boulogne from 1125 until 1147 and Duke of Normandy from 1135 until 1144, his reign was marked by the Anarchy, a civil war with his cousin and rival, the Empress Matilda, whose son, Henry II, succeeded Stephen as the first of the Angevin kings of England. Stephen was born in the County of Blois in central France. Placed into the court of his uncle, Henry I of England, Stephen rose in prominence and was granted extensive lands, he married Matilda of Boulogne, inheriting additional estates in Kent and Boulogne that made the couple one of the wealthiest in England. Stephen narrowly escaped drowning with Henry I's son, William Adelin, in the sinking of the White Ship in 1120; when Henry died in 1135, Stephen crossed the English Channel and with the help of his brother Henry, Bishop of Winchester and Abbot of Glastonbury, took the throne, arguing that the preservation of order across the kingdom took priority over his earlier oaths to support the claim of Henry I's daughter, the Empress Matilda.

The early years of Stephen's reign were successful, despite a series of attacks on his possessions in England and Normandy by David I of Scotland, Welsh rebels, the Empress Matilda's husband Geoffrey Plantagenet, Count of Anjou. In 1138, the Empress's half-brother Robert of Gloucester rebelled against Stephen, threatening civil war. Together with his close advisor, Waleran de Beaumont, Stephen took firm steps to defend his rule, including arresting a powerful family of bishops; when the Empress and Robert invaded in 1139, Stephen was unable to crush the revolt and it took hold in the south-west of England. Captured at the battle of Lincoln in 1141, he was abandoned by many of his followers and lost control of Normandy, he was freed only after his wife and William of Ypres, one of his military commanders, captured Robert at the Rout of Winchester, but the war dragged on for many years with neither side able to win an advantage. Stephen became concerned with ensuring that his son Eustace would inherit his throne.

The King tried to convince the Church to agree to crown Eustace to reinforce his claim. In 1153 the Empress's son, Henry FitzEmpress, invaded England and built an alliance of powerful regional barons to support his claim for the throne; the two armies met at Wallingford, but neither side's barons were keen to fight another pitched battle. Stephen began to examine a process hastened by the sudden death of Eustace. In the year Stephen and Henry agreed to the Treaty of Winchester, in which Stephen recognised Henry as his heir in exchange for peace, passing over William, Stephen's second son. Stephen died the following year. Modern historians have extensively debated the extent to which his personality, external events, or the weaknesses in the Norman state contributed to this prolonged period of civil war. Stephen was born in Blois, France, in either 1092 or 1096, his father was Stephen-Henry, Count of Blois and Chartres, an important French nobleman, an active crusader, who played only a brief part in Stephen's early life.

During the First Crusade Stephen-Henry had acquired a reputation for cowardice, he returned to the Levant again in 1101 to rebuild his reputation. Stephen's mother, was the daughter of William the Conqueror and Matilda of Flanders, famous amongst her contemporaries for her piety and political talent, she had a strong matriarchal influence on Stephen during his early years. France in the 12th century was a loose collection of counties and smaller polities, under the minimal control of the King of France; the King's power was linked to his control of the rich province of Île-de-France, just to the east of Stephen's home county of Blois. In the west lay the three counties of Maine and Touraine, to the north of Blois was the Duchy of Normandy, from which William the Conqueror had conquered England in 1066. William's children were still fighting over the collective Anglo-Norman inheritance; the rulers across this region spoke a similar language, albeit with regional dialects, followed the same religion, were interrelated.

Stephen had one sister, along with two probable half-sisters. His eldest brother was William, who under normal circumstances would have ruled Chartres. William was intellectually disabled, Adela instead had the counties pass to her second son also Count Theobald II of Champagne. Stephen's remaining older brother, died young in his early teens, his younger brother, Henry of Blois, was born four years after him. The brothers formed a close-knit family group, Adela encouraged Stephen to take up the role of a feudal knight, whilst steering Henry towards a career in the church so that their personal career interests would not overlap. Unusually, Stephen was raised in his mother's household rather than being sent to a close relative. Stephen's early life was influenced by his relationship with his uncle Henry I. Henry seized power in England following the death of his elder br

USS Illinois (BB-7)

USS Illinois was a pre-dreadnought battleship built for the United States Navy. She was the lead ship of the Illinois class, was the second ship of the U. S. Navy to be named for the 21st state, her keel was laid in February 1897 at the Newport News Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Company, she was launched in October 1898. She was commissioned in September 1901; the ship was armed with a main battery of four 13-inch guns and she had a top speed of 16 knots. Illinois served with the European Squadron from 1902 to 1903, with the North Atlantic Fleet until 1907, by which time it had been renamed the Atlantic Fleet. During this time, she accidentally collided with two other battleships. From December 1907 to February 1909, she circumnavigated the globe with the Great White Fleet. From November 1912, the ship was used as a training ship, she was lent to the state of New York in 1919 for use as a training vessel for the New York Naval Militia. The ship was converted into a floating armory in 1924 as a result of the Washington Naval Treaty, it was as a floating armory and school that she served for the next thirty years.

In January 1941 she was reclassified as IX-15 and renamed Prairie State so that her former name could be given to USS Illinois, a new Iowa-class battleship. Prairie State was sold for scrap in 1956. Illinois was 374 feet long overall and had a beam of 72 ft 3 in and a draft of 23 ft 6 in, she up to 12,250 long tons at full load. The ship was powered by two-shaft triple-expansion steam engines rated at 16,000 indicated horsepower and eight coal-fired fire-tube boilers, generating a top speed of 16 knots; as built, she was fitted with heavy military masts, but these were replaced by cage masts in 1909. She had a crew of 536 officers and enlisted men, which increased to 690–713, she was armed with a main battery of four 13-inch /35 caliber guns in two twin-gun turrets on the centerline, one forward and aft. The secondary battery consisted of fourteen 6 in /40 caliber Mark IV guns, which were placed in individual casemates in the hull. For close-range defense against torpedo boats, she carried sixteen 6-pounder guns mounted individually in casemates along the side of the hull, six 1-pounder guns.

As was standard for capital ships of the period, Illinois carried four 18 in torpedo tubes in deck mounted launchers. Illinois's main armored belt was 16.5 in thick over the magazines and the machinery spaces and 4 in elsewhere. The main battery gun turrets had 14-inch thick faces, the supporting barbettes had 15 in of armor plating on their exposed sides. Armor, 6 in thick protected the secondary battery; the conning tower had 10 in thick sides. Illinois was laid down on 10 February 1897 by the Newport News Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Company of Newport News, Virginia, she was launched on 4 October 1898 and commissioned on 16 September 1901. The ship's first commander was Captain George A. Converse. Illinois was the first member of her class to be the last to enter service. After commissioning, the ship began a shakedown cruise in the Chesapeake Bay, followed by initial training, she left the area on 20 November to test a new floating dry dock in Louisiana. The ship was back in Newport News in January 1902.

She served as the flagship of Rear Admiral Robley D. Evans from 15 to 28 February. On 30 April, now flying the flag of Rear Admiral A. S. Crowninshield, Illinois departed for a tour of Europe, she stopped in Italy on 18 May. Illinois took part in training exercises and ceremonial duties in European waters for the next two months, until 14 July, when she ran aground outside Oslo, Norway, she had to steam to Britain for repairs. She left the port on 1 September for maneuvers with the rest of the fleet in the Mediterranean and South Atlantic. On 10 January 1903, Illinois was reassigned to the North Atlantic Fleet, where she remained for the next four years, her time was occupied with peacetime training exercises, gunnery practice, various ceremonial activities. During this period, she was involved in two accidents with other battleships of the North Atlantic Fleet; the first took place on 30 March 1903. The second collision occurred on 31 July 1906, took place with her sister ship Alabama; that year, Illinois was the first ship to win the Battenberg Cup.

The ship's next significant action was the cruise of the Great White Fleet around the world, which started with a naval review for President Theodore Roosevelt in Hampton Roads. The cruise of the Great White Fleet was conceived as a way to demonstrate American military power to Japan. Tensions had begun to rise between the United States and Japan after the latter's victory in the Russo-Japanese War in 1905 over racist opposition to Japanese immigration to the United States; the press in both countries began to call for war, Roosevelt hoped to use the demonstration of naval might to deter Japanese aggression. On 17 December, the fleet steamed out of Hampton Roads and cruised south to the Caribbean and to South America, making stops in Port of Spain, Rio de Janeiro, Punta Arenas, Valparaíso, among other cities. After arriving in Mexico in March 1908, the fleet spent three weeks conducting gunnery practice; the fleet resumed its voyage up the Pacific coast of the Americas, stopping in San Francisco and Seattle before crossing the Pacific to

Gift from Hijaz

Armaghan-i-Hijaz was a philosophical poetry book of Allama Iqbal, the great poet-philosopher of Islam. This work, published a few months after the poet's death, is a small volume containing verses in both Persian and Urdu, it is incomplete, although this is not apparent to the reader. The title means "Gift from the Hijaz." He had long wished to undertake the journey to the Arabian Peninsula to perform the Hajj and to visit the tomb of Muhammad, but was prevented from doing so by continuous illness during the last years of his life. Iqbal began composing the Armaghan as a gift to take to the Hijaz, intending to publish it on his return to India as a "Gift from the Hijaz" to his countrymen. In this, his last work, we find the poet more withdrawn and introspective than previously; the poems are more personal. The impression left is that the author is taking a last look at the world around him before leaving it behind; the themes are the familiar ones, but the treatment is as fresh and delicate as ever.

Iqbal's outspokenness when addressing God, in criticizing human evils and in his hatred of injustice and oppression and his devotion to Muhammad and his companions, all remain undiminished. As a summing-up of the ideas and feelings of a great thinker, the Armaghan merits a special place among the literary classics of the twentieth century, it is divided into the first containing Persian, the second Urdu poems. The Persian verses, all in ruba'i form, are divided into five groups and presents God the Truth, the Muslim nation and the "Companions on the Path to God." The second part comprises Urdu poems composed between 1935 and the time of his death and include a poem describing the ideological confusion of the poet's time and its impact on Muslims. In this work, Iqbal touches on every question with which he had been preoccupied during his life of intellectual striving and literary achievement; the poems which comprise this final work give the impression that the writer has at last found the tranquility he had for so long sought: The song that has gone may come again - or may not.

A fresh breeze may come from Hijaz - or may not. The days of this poor humble man are ended. Javid Nama Payam-i-Mashriq Zabur-i-Ajam Pas Chih Bayad Kard ay Aqwam-i-Sharq Bang-e-Dara Bal-e-Jibril Asrar-i-Khudi Rumuz-e-Bekhudi Zarb-i-Kalim Read online"Armaghan-i-Hijaz". Iqbal Academy Pakistan. "Armaghan-i-Hijaz,". Iqbal Cyber library. "Gift from Hijaz, English translation of Armaghan-i-Hijaz by Q. A. Kabit". Iqbal Academy Pakistan. Iqbal Academy Pakistan"Homepage". Iqbal Academy Pakistan