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Valletta

Valletta is the capital city of Malta. Located in the South Eastern Region of the main island, between Marsamxett Harbour to the west and the Grand Harbour to the east, its population in 2014 was 6,444, while the metropolitan area around it has a population of 393,938. Valletta is the southernmost capital of Europe, at just 0.61 square kilometres, it is the European Union's smallest capital city. Valletta's 16th-century buildings were constructed by the Knights Hospitaller; the city was named after Jean Parisot de Valette, who succeeded in defending the island from an Ottoman invasion in 1565. The city is Baroque in character, with elements of Mannerist, Neo-Classical and Modern architecture, though the Second World War left major scars on the city the destruction of the Royal Opera House; the city was recognised as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1980. The city's fortifications, consisting of bastions and cavaliers, along with the beauty of its Baroque palaces and churches, led the ruling houses of Europe to give the city its nickname Superbissima – Latin for "Proudest".

The peninsula was called Xagħret Mewwija or Ħal Newwija. Mewwija refers to a sheltered place; the extreme end of the peninsula was known as Xebb ir-Ras, of which name origins from the lighthouse on site. A family which owned land became known as Sceberras, now a Maltese surname as Sciberras. At one point the entire peninsula became known as Sceberras; the building of a city on the Sciberras Peninsula had been proposed by the Order of Saint John as early as 1524. Back the only building on the peninsula was a small watchtower dedicated to Erasmus of Formia, built in 1488. In 1552, the Aragonite watchtower was demolished and the larger Fort Saint Elmo was built in its place. In the Great Siege of 1565, Fort Saint Elmo fell to the Ottomans, but the Order won the siege with the help of Sicilian reinforcements; the victorious Grand Master, Jean de Valette set out to build a new fortified city on the Sciberras Peninsula to fortify the Order's position in Malta and bind the Knights to the island. The city was called La Valletta.

The Grand Master asked the European kings and princes for help, he received a lot of assistance, due to the increased fame of the Order after their victory in the Great Siege. Pope Pius V sent his military architect, Francesco Laparelli, to design the new city, while Philip II of Spain sent substantial monetary aid; the foundation stone of the city was laid by Grand Master de Valette on 28 March 1566. He placed the first stone in what became Our Lady of Victories Church. In his book Dell’Istoria della Sacra Religione et Illustrissima Militia di San Giovanni Gierosolimitano, written between 1594 and 1602, Giacomo Bosio writes that when the cornerstone of Valletta was placed, a group of Maltese elders said: "Iegi zimen en fel wardia col sceber raba iesue uquie". De Valette never saw the completion of his city. Interred in the church of Our Lady of the Victories, his remains now rest in St. John's Co-Cathedral among the tombs of other Grand Masters of the Knights of Malta. Francesco Laparelli was the city's principal designer and his plan departed from medieval Maltese architecture, which exhibited irregular winding streets and alleys.

He designed the new city on a rectangular grid plan, without any collacchio. The streets were designed to be wide and straight, beginning centrally from the City Gate and ending at Fort Saint Elmo overlooking the Mediterranean, his assistant was the Maltese architect Girolamo Cassar, who oversaw the construction of the city himself after Laparelli's death in 1570. The Ufficio delle Case regulated the building of the city as a planning authority; the city of Valletta was complete by the early 1570s, it became the capital on 18 March 1571 when Grand Master Pierre de Monte moved from his seat at Fort St Angelo in Birgu to the Grandmaster's Palace in Valletta. Seven Auberges were built for the Order's Langues, these were complete by the 1580s. An eighth Auberge, Auberge de Bavière, was added in the 18th century. In Antoine de Paule's reign, it was decided to build more fortifications to protect Valletta, these were named the Floriana Lines after the architect who designed them, Pietro Paolo Floriani of Macerata.

During António Manoel de Vilhena's reign, a town began to form between the walls of Valletta and the Floriana Lines, this evolved from a suburb of Valletta to Floriana, a town in its own right. In 1634, a gunpowder factory explosion killed 22 people in Valletta. In 1749, Muslim slaves plotted to kill Grandmaster Pinto and take over Valletta, but the revolt was suppressed before it started due to their plans leaking out to the Order. On in his reign, Pinto embellished the city with Baroque architecture, many important buildings such as Auberge de Castille were remodeled or rebuilt in the new architectural style. In 1775, during the reign of Ximenes, an unsuccessful revolt known as the Rising of the Priests occurred in which Fort Saint Elmo and Saint James Cavalier were captured by rebels, but the revolt was suppressed. I

A Memory of Vienna

A Memory of Vienna is an album by pianist Ran Blake and saxophonist Anthony Braxton performing jazz standards recorded in 1988 and released on the hatOLOGY label in 1997. The Allmusic review by Thom Jurek stated "This pair, despite the quirky nature of Blake's off-kilter harmonizing, know how to swing together, taking great care not to get in the way of the tunes they're playing; this is as understated and "mellow" as you will hear these two players. However, it may be the first time you hear what sensitive listeners and interpretive masters they can be with the jazz canon". On All About Jazz Troy Collins noted "Though admired for their uncompromising, avant-garde innovations, the most surprising aspect of the session is not the duo's relative lack of cacophonous pyrotechnics, but the incredible level of intuitive empathy and conceptual foresight displayed—despite the ad hoc nature of the recording. A Memory Of Vienna demonstrates Blake and Braxton's longstanding reverence for standard material, bringing new life to timeless classics with understated creativity and soulful conviction".

"'Round Midnight" - 11:06 "Yardbird Suite" - 5:37 "You Go to My Head" - 7:57 "Just Friends" - 6:24 "Alone Together" - 4:58 "Four" - 4:52 "Soul Eyes" - 7:33 "I'm Getting Sentimental Over You" - 7:06 Anthony Braxton - alto saxophone Ran Blake - piano

Kindling Does for Firewood

Kindling Does for Firewood is a novel by Australian writer Richard King, published by Allen & Unwin Academic. The novel, King's debut, won the Australian/Vogel Literary Award in 1995. A review in Publishers Weekly states that the "clearly talented" author used experimental/stream-of-consciousness monologues; the reviewer states that King "...aims for a flip tone in this debut chronicle of slackers in Melbourne, Australia". The review states that the romance between a female postsecondary student, Margaret and a male bookstore clerk, William, is "doomed from the start". Margaret is from a regular middle-class family, but Peter lives with unemployed roommates who only consume beer and drugs; the unemployed roommates are somewhat like the Lost Boys from the Peter Pan stories. Paul Dawson, commenting on the Australian Vogel Awards, stated that the $20,000 award "...can be seen as a barometer of cultural preoccupations, mapping shifts at the edges of literary culture: here is where the direction of young writing appears to be moving, or at least where judges and publishers want it to move."

Dawson states that "t could be argued that Richard King's lightweight Kindling Does for Firewood was a safe option in the wake of the Demidenko scandal in 1995." The Helen Demidenko scandal involved her Vogel Award in 1993 for The Hand That Signed the Paper, "contributing to public debates about the responsibility of writing history". The Hand that Signed the Paper is about a Ukrainian family trying to survive a decade of Stalinist purges and state-imposed poverty and famine; when the media discovered Helen Dale's identity and legal name, this promoted much debate on the nature of identity and authenticity in Australian literature. Richard King was born in Melbourne in 1968, he studied arts with a major in politics and philosophy. In addition to several plays, he wrote a second novel, Carrion Colony