Sunday, March 28, 2010
before and after WW II
Königsberg was the capital of eastern Prussia from the Late Middle Ages until 1945. It was founded by the Teutonic Knights in the year 1255 AD during the Prussian Crusades. Its name meant 'King's Mountain' honoring King (German: König) Ottokar II of Bohemia, who paid for the erection of the first fortress there during the Prussian Crusade.
Friday, March 26, 2010
For centuries Greece was occupied by the Ottoman Empire. Piece by piece they liberated themselves in the 19th en 20th century. Their goal was to ‘liberate’ also the areas on mainland Turkey, over where many Greeks lived, and to make Constantinople, present day Istanbul, their capital (instead of Athens). Many Greeks and Armenians lived in Constantinople, in 1900, from the million people living in Constantinople less than 50% was Muslim.
By the treaty of Sevres (1920) large parts of mainland Turkey were indeed assigned to Greece (Troas and Iona). The Greeks started a war to gain even more land, but the Turks, led by Ataturk, counter attacked and the Greeks lost all the land the had gained before. The red dotted line show roughly the advance of the Greek troops c.q. the proposed great Greece ('megali Hellas').
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Ship at the the Cattle Pier in Balaklava harbour during the Crimean War. Roger Fenton, 1855. In the foreground a holding pen with horses.
Balaklava Harbour was the main supply port for the British Army in the Crimea. However, it proved inadequate for the volume of traffic demanded of it. This problem was exacerbated by a storm on November 14th 1854 that devastated the British fleet lying at anchor there, and the onset of the harsh Crimean winter. The result was, squalid living conditions, shortages and suffering for the British soldiers.
Monday, March 15, 2010
Matthias Withoos (1627-1703): Otter in a Landscape.
Matthias also painted several cityscapes, among others a large (2.5 x 4 meter) painting of the Amersfoort skyline. His student Casper van Wittel became famous in Italy for the development of the genre of vedute; large-scale paintings of cityscapes.
Friday, March 12, 2010
A photo (daguerreotype) of Maria Louise, 56 year old, made in 1846. She was the second wife of Napoléon Bonaparte and thereby empress of the French from 1810-1814.
The coffin of Marie-Louise in the imperial crypt in Vienna (photo by RfA, 2009)
Monday, March 8, 2010
Photo of Cossack Bay, Balaklava, during the Crimean War, by Roger Fenton in 1855. A building next to which is a pile of baskets and a holding pen with horses at the landing place on the cattle pier with several ships at dock in Balaklava harbor are visible.
Saturday, March 6, 2010
Princess Charlotte (1796-1817) was the only child of King George IV of England. In December 1813 the engagement of Charlotte to prince Willem, the royal Dutch heir, was announced. In March
In 1816 she married prince Leopold. In 1817 she died after having given birth to a stillborn son the day before, resulting in a nationwide mourning. The attending physician later shot himself.
Without a direct heir to the thrown (all of King George's sisters were too old to have children, and all of his brothers were without child), a mad dash towards matrimony by four of Charlotte's bachelor uncles began. Eventually one of them produced a heir: the future Queen Victoria.
As consolation for his loss, Leopold was made the first king of the Belgians in 1831. Willem married the Russian daughter of the Tsar, Anna Paulowna, in 1816. Since Anna had refused a marriage proposal of Napoleon, and since her brother Tsar Alexander was one of the most important rulers of Europe, this wasn't such a bad catch at all.
Thursday, March 4, 2010
Maude Fealy was born Maude Hawk in Memphis, Tennessee on March 4, 1883. Her mother, Margaret Fealy, divorced Maude’s father, James Hawk. Margaret then took her maiden name of Fealy and Maude also went by her mother’s maiden name. Her mother remarried to Rafaello Cavallo, the conductor of the Pueblo, Colorado Symphony Orchestra, and Maude lived in Denver Colorado off and on for most of her life.