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The History Channel - Encyclopedia
Category: History and Culture > History
Date & country: 02/12/2007, UK
Words: 28882


Arras, Congress and Treaty of
Meeting in northern France in 1435 between representatives of Henry VI of England, Charles VII of France, and Philip the Good of Burgundy to settle the Hundred Years' War. The outcome was a...

array, commission of
In England, system of universal military conscription dating from the 13th century, when the obligation to serve the king was extended to serfs. Able-bodied men between the ages of 15 and 60 in...

arrest
Apprehension and detention of a person suspected of a crime. In Britain, an arrest may be made on a magistrate's warrant, but a police constable is empowered to arrest without warrant in all cases...

arrestment
In Scots law, the process by which a creditor detains the goods or effects of the debtor in the hands of a third party till he or she is paid. It is divided into two kinds:arrestment in security,...

Arretium
One of the 12 cities of Etruria, especially famous for its red pottery, Arretine ware, copied in Gaul in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD. The celebrated bronze chimera (5th century BC) now in the...

Arrhidaeus
(died 317 BC) Natural son of Philip II of Macedon, and half-brother to Alexander the Great. On the latter's death 323 BC, he was named successor by Alexander's soldiers in Babylon. He married Eurydice,...

Arria
Wife of Caecina Paetus. When her husband was implicated AD 42 in a plot against the Roman emperor Claudius and condemned to death, she committed suicide. Her daughter Arria was married to Thrasea...

Arriaga, Manuel José de
(1842-1917) Portuguese president 1911-15. He was elected deputy for Funchal as a Republican in the parliament of 1882-84 and for Lisbon 1890-92. He took part in the revolution that drove King Manuel II...

Arrian
(lived 2nd century AD) Greek historian. His Anabasis/Expedition is the chief literary source of information on the campaigns of Alexander the Great, drawn with care from much earlier material. Arrian was a governor and...

Arrianus, Flavius
(c.AD 96-c. 175) Greek historian and philosopher. He was governor of Cappadocia 131-37 and archon of Athens 147-48. The latter years of his life were spent at Nicomedia, where he wrote Anabasis of Alexander, a...

arris
In architecture, the sharp edge produced by the intersection of two plane or curved surfaces. ...

Arrow, Kenneth Joseph
(1921) US economist. With French-born US economist Gerard Debreu he developed the first rigorous proof of the existence of general equilibrium in a capitalist economy. Earlier, however, he had proved the...

Arrowsmith, Aaron
(1750-1823) English cartographer born in Winston, County Durham. By 1790 he had founded a cartography business in London, raising the execution of maps to a level never before attained. ...

Arrowsmith, Edmund
(1585-1628) English priest. He was born at Haydock, near St Helens, and educated at Douai. Following his ordination as a priest in 1612, he pursued missionary work in England 1613-28, being received into the...

Arroyo, Gloria Macapagal
(1947) Filipino politician, president from 2001. The daughter of former president Diosdado Macapagal, she was elected vice- ...

Ars poetica
Poem by Horace, of uncertain date. It is a discussion of dramatic poetry based on Greek textbooks but full of the poet's own observations. It was regarded as an authoritative treatise and had an...

Arsaces
Founder of the Arsacid dynasty. About 250 BC he raised the standard of revolt against the rule of the Seleucid Antiochus II, was elected king, and ruled Parthia c. 250-211 BC. All Parthian kings...

Arsacid dynasty
Rulers of ancient Parthia c. 250 BC-AD 226, who took their titles from their founder Arsaces. At its peak the dynasty controlled a territory from eastern India to western Mesopotamia, with a...

Arsenius Autorianus
(c. 1200-1273) Patriarch of Constantinople 1255-59 and Nicaea 1255 and 1261-65. He excommunicated the Byzantine emperor Michael VIII in 1265 for blinding John, his ward, the rightful heir to the throne, and...

Arsinoë
Name given to various towns and villages founded in Ptolemaic times, and mostly named after Arsinoë II, wife of Ptolemy II. ...

Arsinoë I
(died 247 BC) Daughter of Lysimachus, King of Thrace, and first wife of Ptolemy II. She was banished to Coptos for conspiring against her husband, following accusations made by Arsinoë II. Her son afterwards...

Arsinoë II
(316-270 BC) Daughter of Ptolemy I and Berenice I. She married Lysimachus, King of Thrace, and murdered her stepson, Agathocles, in order to secure the succession. Ptolemy Keraunos then murdered Lysimachus and...

Arsinoë III
(died c. 204 BC) Sister and wife of Ptolemy IV, with whom she defeated Antiochus III at Raphia 217 BC, although the latter was later successful against Ptolemy. She was the mother of Ptolemy V. She was murdered. ...

Arsinoë IV
Youngest daughter of Ptolemy XII and sister of Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt. During Caesar's attack on Alexandria, the inhabitants recognized her as their queen. After Caesar's victory she was taken to...

arson
Malicious and wilful setting fire to property. In Britain arson is covered by the Criminal Damage Act 1971. In Scotland arson is known as `wilful fire-raising`. ...

art
In the broadest sense, all the processes and products of human skill, imagination, and invention. In contemporary usage, definitions of art usually reflect art theory, and the term may encompass...

art brut
Term coined by the French artist Jean Dubuffet to describe various types of art produced outside the conventional art world. Literally the term means `raw art`, but it is sometimes translated...

art deco
Style in the decorative arts that influenced design and architecture, and is particularly associated with mass-produced domestic goods. It emerged in Europe in the 1920s and continued through the...

art history
The study of works of art. German archaeologist Johann Winckelmann laid the foundations for a systematic study of art history as early as the mid-18th century, but it did not become an academic...

art nouveau
Decorative style in the visual arts, interior design, and architecture that flourished from 1890 to 1910. It is characterized by organic, sinuous patterns and ornamentations based usually on...

Artaud, Antonin
(1896-1948) French actor, theatre director, and theorist. Although his play Les Cenci/The Cenci (1935) was a failure, his passionate manifestos in Theatre of Cruelty (1931-36), advocating the release of...

Artaxerxes I
(lived 5th century BC) King of Persia 465-424 BC, son of Xerxes I. During his reign Athens supported an Egyptian revolt 460-454. He sanctioned the Jewish religion in Jerusalem by allowing the the Hebrew scribe Ezra to...

Artaxerxes II Mnemon
(lived 5th-4th centuries BC) King of Persia 404-359 BC, son and successor of Darius II and elder brother of Cyrus the Younger. He was at war with Sparta 399-394, and 387-380 with Evagoras, King of Salamis, who refused to...

Artaxerxes III Ochus
(lived 4th century BC) King of Persia 359-338 BC, son and successor of Artaxerxes II. He obtained the throne by contriving the deaths of his three elder brothers. With the aid of Greek generals and mercenary troops, he...

Arte Povera
Type of modern art that uses everyday materials such as soil or old newspapers in an attempt to undermine the commercial values of the art world. The term is often used vaguely and has been applied...

artefact
Any object that has been used, modified, or manufactured by humans, such as a tool, weapon, or vessel. In art, an artefact is a product of human skill and creativity, while in archaeology, the...

Artemidorus Daldianus
(lived 2nd century AD) Soothsayer and interpreter of dreams, born at Ephesus in Asia Minor (now Turkey). His four-volume work Oneirocritica/Interpretation of Dreams offers valuable insights into ancient superstitions. ...

Artemis
In Greek mythology, the goddess of chastity, all young creatures, the Moon, and the hunt (Roman Diana). She was the daughter of Zeus and the Titaness Leto, and the twin sister of Apollo. She was...

Artevelde, Jacob van
(c. 1295-1345) Flemish patriot. During the revolt against Count Louis 1337, he led the insurgents. He allied with Edward III of England against the king of France during the Hundred Years' War, and assisted at the...

Artevelde, Philip van
(c. 1340-1382) Flemish patriot. Son of Jacob van Artevelde, he led the people of Ghent in a revolt 1381 against Count Louis II de Male (died 1384). Artevelde defeated...

artha
In Hinduism, prosperity arising from economic development according to religious principles, one of the four aims of material life prescribed in Hindu scripture. These aims are dharma (religion),...

Arthur
(lived 6th century) Semi-legendary Romano-British warleader who led British resistance against the Saxons, Picts, and Scots in the first half of the 6th century. He was probably a warlord rather than a king. He...

Arthur, Chester Alan
(1830-1886) 21st president of the USA 1881-85, a Republican. In 1880 he was chosen as James Garfield's vice-president, and was his successor when Garfield was assassinated the following year. His...

Arthur, Duke of Brittany
(1187-1203) Grandson of Henry II of England and nephew of King John. As a rival for the throne, Arthur was taken prisoner by John and died in Rouen, France, possibly murdered at John's instigation. ...

Arthur, Owen (Seymour)
(1949) Barbadian centre-left politician, prime minister from 1994. In 1993 he succeeded Henry Forde as leader of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) and led the party to a landslide victory in September...

Arthur, Prince of Wales
(1486-1502) Eldest son of Henry VII of England and Elizabeth of York. He was made Prince of Wales 1489, and married Catherine of Aragón 1501, when they were both 15, but died the next year, allegedly without...

Arthur, Timothy Shay
(1809-1885) US writer. He was the author of moral and domestic tales, notably Ten Nights in a Bar Room (1854), and founded Arthur's Home Magazine in (1853). ...

arti
In Hinduism, a primary ritual for worship of the sacred image in a temple. A ghee (clarified butter) lamp, incense, flowers, and water are offered before...

articles of association
In the UK, the rules governing the relationship between a registered company, its members (the shareholders), and its directors. The articles of association are deposited with the Registrar of...

Articles, Lords of
See Lords of the Articles. ...

Artigas, José Gervasio
(1764-1850) Uruguayan independence campaigner. Artigas became governor of Montevideo 1815 but soon fell out with the Buenos Aires regime because it lacked commitment to his province's liberation. Although he...

artillery
Collective term for military firearms too heavy to be carried. Artillery can be mounted on tracks, wheels, ships, or aeroplanes and includes cannons and rocket launchers. ...

Artois
Former province of northern France, bounded by Flanders and Picardie and almost corresponding with the modern département of Pas-de-Calais. Its capital was Arras. Its Latin name Artesium lent...

Artois, Battle of
In World War I, French offensive north of Arras during May-July 1915. It was intended to hold German forces in France and prevent their movement to the Eastern Front. Although the French advance...

Arts and Crafts Movement
English social and aesthetic movement of the late 19th century that stressed the importance of manual skills and the dignity of labour. It expressed a rejection of Victorian industrialization and...

Arts Councils
UK organizations that support music, drama, dance, visual arts, and literature with government and National Lottery funds. They came into being in April 1994 when the Arts Council of Great Britain,...

arts festival
Programme of events and performances either promoting a single or a combination of art forms. Arts festivals vary in size, content, and duration, but all share the general objectives of staging and...

Artzybasheff, Boris
(1899-1965) Russian-born illustrator. Artzybasheff emigrated to the USA and worked as an engraver, illustrator, and set designer. Known for his illustrations of books for adults and children, such as his...

Arundel Marbles
Major portion of an important Greek chronicle discovered on the island of Paros. The author's intention was to list the main events of Athens from the period of Cecrops (a mythical king, attributed...

Arundel, Thomas Howard
(1586-1646) English politician and patron of the arts. Succeeded to earldom 1595. The Arundel Marbles, part of his collection of Italian sculptures, were given to Oxford University in 1667 by...

Arup, Ove
(1895-1988) Danish civil engineer. He founded the British-based architectural practice, Arup Associates, a firm noted for the considered and elegant manner in which modern materials, especially concrete, are...

Arval Brethren
Body of priests in ancient Rome who offered annual sacrifices to the lares or divinities of the fields to ensure a good harvest. They formed a college of 12 priests, and their chief...

Arverni
Gallic people who inhabited the ancient French province of Auvergne. In 52 BC their capital, Gregovia, was successfully defended against Caesar by Vercingetorix. After their defeat at Alesia, in the...

Arya Samaj
Hindu religious sect founded by Dayanand Saraswati (1825-1888) in about 1875. He renounced idol worship and urged a return to the purer principles of the Vedas (Hindu scriptures). For its time the...

Aryan
The hypothetical parent language of an ancient people believed to have lived between Central Asia and Eastern Europe and to have reached Persia and India in one direction and Europe in another, some...

Arzú, Irigoyen Alvaro
(1947) Guatemalan politician, president 1996-1999. He served briefly as minister of foreign affairs in 1991, before resigning to become secretary general of the National Advancement Party (PAN). As the...

asa
Abbreviation for Association of South East Asia (1961-67), replaced by ASEAN, Association of Southeast Asian Nations. ...

Asachi, Gheorghe
(1788-1869) Romanian teacher and writer. He was a leading figure in the Romanian cultural renaissance of the early 19th century. In 1813 Asachi introduced Romanian as the language of...

Asam
(lived 18th century) Family of German baroque artists and decorators. They included Hans Georg (d. 1696), whose work consisted of frescoes and oil-paintings, and his two sons Cosmas Damian (c. 1686-1742), a painter,...

Asanuma, Inejiro
(1898-1960) Japanese politician, leader of the Japan Socialist Party. In 1946 he was elected to the lower house of the Diet (parliament) in the first post-war election and repeatedly thereafter. He was...

Asaph, St
(lived 7th century AD) Welsh ecclesiastic who was active c.570. He is thought to have been the first bishop of Llanelwy, which was thereafter known by his name. His feast is on 1 May. ...

ASAT
Acronym for antisatellite weapon. ...

Asbjörnsen, Peter Christen
(1812-1885) Norwegian writer and folklorist. In collaboration with J&osla;rgen Moe, he wrote the collection Norske Folkeeventyr/Norwegian Folk Tales 1841-44. On his own he published Norske Huldreeventyr og...

Asbury, Francis
(1745-1816) English-born US Protestant religious leader. Asbury travelled to America as a Wesleyan missionary in 1771, touring the colonies and the Mississippi territory. He was appointed superintendent of...

Ascania
German dynasty founded in the 12th century by Albert `the Bear`, 1st Margrave of Brandenburg. His castle, near Aschersleben, was called Ascania. ...

Ascanius
In Roman mythology, the son of Aeneas and ancestor of the Julii. He accompanied his father to Italy from Troy, and later founded the city of Alba Longa. ...

Ascension Day
In the Christian calendar, the feast day commemorating Jesus' ascension into heaven. It is the 40th day after Easter. Ten days later is Pentecost, which marks the coming of the Holy...

asceticism
The renunciation of physical pleasure; for example, in eating, drinking, sexuality, and human company. Discomfort or pain may be sought, often for religious reasons. The most acute asceticism is the...

Asch, Sholem
(1880-1957) Polish-born US novelist and dramatist. He wrote in Yiddish from 1904 onwards, beginning with the story `Dos Shtetl/The Little Town`, a classic tragicomedy of life in a small Jewish settlement....

Ascham, Roger
(c. 1515-1568) English scholar and royal tutor. His writings include Toxophilus (1545), a treatise on archery written in dialogue form, and an educational treatise The Scholemaster, published by his widow in 1570....

Asclepiades
(lived 3rd century BC) Greek epigrammist and lyric poet of Samos, after whom the Asclepiad metre was named. His lyrics are rhythmic and musical and he injected new life into the epigram as a poetic form; 45 of his...

Asclepius
In Greek mythology, the god of medicine (Roman Aesculapius); son of Apollo; father of Panacea and Hygieia, goddess of health. His emblem was the caduceus, a winged staff encoiled by two snakes; the...

Ascott
Half-timbered house in Wing, Buckinghamshire, England. The house and its estate of over 100 ha/247 acres were given to the National Trust in 1950 by Mr and Mrs Anthony de Rothschild, together with...

ASEAN
Acronym for Association of South East Asian Nations. ...

Asgard
One of the Nine Worlds of Norse mythology; dwelling place of Odin and his Aesir (principal warrior gods). Asgard lay above the Earth or Midgard (middle world), and was reached by Bifrost, the...

Ash Wednesday
First day of Lent, the period of fasting in the Christian calendar leading up to Easter....

Ashanti Wars
Four British expeditions 1873-1901 to the interior of modern Ghana to wrest control of trade in West Africa from the indigenous Ashanti people and end the slave trade which...

Ashbee, Charles Robert
(1863-1942) English designer, architect, and writer. He was one of the major figures of the Arts and Crafts Movement. He founded a Guild and School of Handicraft in the East End of London in 1888, but...

Ashbery, John Lawrence
(1927) US poet and art critic. His collections of poetry - including Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror (1975), which won a Pulitzer Prize - are distinguished by their exuberant artifice and strong...

Ashbridge, Elizabeth
(1713-1755) English-born American Quaker. She is remembered for her autobiography Some Account of the Fore-Part of the Life of Elizabeth Ashbridge, first published in England 1774. The book is a frank...

Ashby, Margery Irene
(1882-1981) English feminist. She attended the first International Women's Suffrage Congress in Berlin (1904) and subsequently worked with various women's organizations, becoming president of the International...

Ashcan School
Group of US realist painters active about 1908-14. So-called because of their chosen subject matter, the School's central figures were Robert Henri, George Luks, William Glackens, Everett Shinn,...

Ashcroft, John
(1942) US Republican politician and attorney general 2001-04. A deeply religious conservative, who opposes abortion, gun control, voluntary school desegregation, and gay rights, and supports the death...

Ashcroft, Peggy
(1907-1991) English actor. Her Shakespearean roles included Desdemona in Othello (1930) (with Paul Robeson) and Juliet in Romeo and Juliet (1935) (with Laurence Olivier and John Gielgud), and she appeared in...

Ashdown House
17th-century house in Oxfordshire, England, 12 km/7 mi east of Swindon. It was given to the National Trust in 1956 by Cornelia, Countess of Craven, whose ancestor, the 1st Lord Craven, built the...

Ashdown, Paddy (Jeremy John Durham)
(1941) British politician, leader of the Liberal Democrat party 1988-99. His party significantly increased its seat holding in the 1997 general election, winning more seats than it had had since the...

Ashford Castle
Victorian baronial castle at Cong, County Mayo, Republic of Ireland. It was built mostly in 1870 by Sir Arthur Guinness on the rump of a house bought by his father in 1855. The designers were James...

Ashford, Daisy (Margaret Mary Julia)
(1881-1972) English writer. The Young Visiters (1919), a novel of unconscious humour, was written when she was nine. Sponsored by the novelist and playwright J M Barrie, the book won instant success by its...

Ashi
(352-427) Jewish Talmudic scholar, born in Babylon. Ashi was president of the Academy of Sura, and collected all the Jewish laws, doctrine, and tradition into...

Ashikaga
In Japanese history, the family who held the office of shogun 1338-1573, a period of civil wars. No drama evolved under the patronage of Ashikaga shoguns. Relations with China improved...