Mary Anning. Mary Anning was a British fossil collector, dealer and paleontologist who became known around the world for a number of important finds she made in the Jurassic age marine fossil beds at Lyme Regis where she lived. Her work contributed to the fundamental changes in scientific thinking about prehistoric life and the history of the earth that occurred in the early 19th century. Anning searched for fossils in the area's Blue Lias cliffs, particularly during the winter months when landslides exposed new fossils that had to be collected quickly, before they were lost to the sea. It was dangerous work, and she nearly lost her life in 1833 during a landslide that killed her dog Tray. Her discoveries included the first ichthyosaur skeleton to be correctly identified, which she and her brother Joseph found when she was just twelve years old; the first two plesiosaur skeletons ever found; the first pterosaur skeleton located outside Germany; and some important fish fossils. Her observations played a key role in the discoveries that belemnite fossils contained fossilised ink sacs, and that coprolites, known as bezoar stones at the time, were fossilised faeces. When geologist Henry De la Beche painted Duria Antiquior, the first widely circulated pictorial representation of a scene from prehistoric life derived from fossil reconstructions, he based it largely on fossils Anning had found, and sold prints of it for her benefit
Charles Dodgson. Charles Dodgson ( pen name Lewis Carroll) was a teacher of Mathematics at the University of Oxford. In 1862 he wrote a fantasy book called Alices Adventures in Wonderland. He wrote it for a girl named Alice Liddell. The main character of the book is also called Alice. Alice travels in Wonderland and meets strange people, animals, cards, kings, a knight, queens, twin brothers and some other crazy character. One of the characters in this fantasy world is the Cheshire Cat. He can smile and disappear. Lewis Carroll also wrote some funny poems about crocodiles, cats and mice, and a very strange character called Jabberwocky. Children in Russia, China, Italy, Brazil and many other countries like reading his poems and fantasy stories
Francis Drake. Sir Francis Drake was an English pirate and explorer. He set off from Plymouth for Egypt in But his ships sailed north-west across the Atlantic and he reached South America. They attacked Spanish ships there and took their food. Captain Drake sailed round the continent of South America. He discovered some hills to the south of the Antarctic and South America. Then he went north and was the first person from Europe to reach the west coast of North America. He met Native Americans there. Sir Francis Drake explored a new way home from North America. He was the second captain to sail around the world. He came back home in August,
Nikolai Mikhaylovich Przhevalsky. Nikolai Mikhaylovich Przhevalsky as a Russian explorer and soldier. In 1867 he set off from St Petersburg for Irkutsk in Siberia. There he explored the river Ussuri. Then he went to Mongolia and the mountains of Tibet. He made maps of those places, and discovered a truly wild horse later named after him. He set off for the town of Lhasa, in Tibet, but he didnt reach it. During his third visit to Central Asia he saw the beautiful lake of koko Nor, or Blue Lake, the largest lake in China. April 12, 1839 November 1
Marco Polo went to China. He set off from Italy with his father and uncle in They travelled to the west on horses and camels. Marko Polo lived in Russia for 17 years. He discovered lots of new things there. He discovered coffee and spaghetti. He saw that people there used bicycles and they put coal on their fires. He explored China and came back by boat in He took lots of gold from China but his special treasure was his CD about his travels there. It became the greatest travelogue in the world. Marco Polo
James Cook. James Cook set off from Plymouth in August 1768 and went south. He wanted to discover a new land there. He didnt find the Antarctic on this trip, but he discovered and mapped some new island. He reached New Zealand and discovered that it was two islands. He met Maori people there. Captain Cook also explored and mapped the east coast of Australia. He saw koalas and kangaroos in Australia. He came back home in July,
Daniel Defoe. Daniel Defoe is an English writer most famous for the novel Robinson Crusoe. Besides this novel Defoe also wrote such novels as The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders, lady Roxana and Journal and the Plague Year where he described the horrible Great Plague that devastated London in Defoe wrote a lot6 he published more than 259 works. Besides being a writer Defoe was a journalist and he edited the newspaper The reviewer during 9 years
Charles Darwin. Charles Darwin is a well-known scientist. The scientist Charles Darwin was born at the beginning of the 19 th centry, in As a boy, Charles collected all kinds of things, minerals, birds eggs, insects. He carried out chemical experiments in the school garden. His nickname was Gas. After there years of study at Cambridge University he made a voyage round the world. During the 5 years he studied many different kinds of plants and animal in all parts of the world. Little by little Darwin built up his famous theory. His theory of evolution opened a new period in the development of the science of biology, the Darwinian period. Charles Darwin died in 1882 and was buried in Westminster Abbey
George Noel Gordon Byron. George Noel Gordon Byron was born in 1788 into a noble family and at of 10 he became a lord. He traveled a lot, visited Italy and Greece; later h left his motherland and lived in Switzerland and Italy. In Italy he took part in the movement which was fighting for the countrys liberty. Later he moved to Greece where he took part in a similar movement and where he died from fever in This poet was very noble. He was a very talented poet, he wrote romantic and satirical poems, as well as historical tragedies. His most famous poem is Chiled Harolds pilgrimage.
Mark Twain Mark Twain was born in Missouri in He is the leading humorous writen of the 19 th centry. His real name was Samuel Langhorne Clemens. He is best know for the novels The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures Huckleberry Finn. He also wrote travel books and essays. Many of them were based on his experience of life on the Mississippi River. Among his other books there are the historical novels The Prince and the Pauper and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthurs court and an account of his early life Life on the Mississippi. He died in 1910 at the age of 75.
Joseph Turner Joseph Turner was born in 1775 in London. He was very found of nature. His father was a barber. During his trip he liked to draw ruined abbeys and castles. He was famous for the wonderful colours of his pictures and was a master of water colours. Most of his pictures were landscapes and sea pictures. Joseph Turner died in 1851.
John Lennon John Lennon was found of drawing and writing short poems. He also played the guitar. At the age of 16 he created his first music group called Quarrymen. John became a member of The Beatles in His second wife was Yoko Ono, a Japanese avant- garde painter. He fought for peace in the world. John Lennon wrote the song called Give Peace Chance.
Christopher Wren In the Great London Fire of 1666, 3,000 houses and 97 churches were destroyed. After the Fire, London was rebuilt, but the new houses were built of stone and brick instead of wood. The streets were made wider and open space was left for squares. An opportunity to plan the new city of London was given to Sir Christopher Wren, the famous English architect. More then fifty new churches and a large number of houses were designed by Wren. St. Pauls Cathedral was designed by Christopher Wren in the Gothic style. Sir Christopher Wren was buried here at the age of 91.
George Washington. He was the first person to be elected the President of the United States. George Washington was born in Virginia, just south of Washington, D. C. He grew up on a large farm. George Washington went to school for about eight years. He especially liked to study mathematics. He also liked to study history and geography, because he wanted to know about other parts of the world. George Washington led the American army in many battles during the War for American Idependence
Ernest Hemingway Ernest Hemingway was born in Oak Park, Illinois, in He was one of Hollywoods favorite authors. His books The Old Man and the Sea,The Sun Also Rises, and A Farewell to Arms were made into films. He won the Nobel Prize for Literature in As a hunter, fisherman, boxer, soldier, war correspondent, and author, Hemingway led a life of action. Hemingway wrote six novels and more than 50 short stories. His early shot fiction was greatly influenced by his outdoor life in the American mid-west.
Jack London Jack London was born in 1876 in San Francisco, California. His family was very poor, so Jack had to leave school to make money. In 1897, he went to Alaska to find gold. Instead, he found ideas for his stories there. He is best known for his book The Call of the Wild the story of the adventures of a dog in the frozen north. His writings were very popular and he became rich and famous before the age of 30. Jack London died in 1916.
Emily Dickinson Emily Dickinson was an American poet. She is now recognized as one of the greatest poets of 19 th -centure America. Emily Dickinson was born in Amherst, Massachusetts. She lived there her whole life. She led an isolated life. Her life experiences were very limited, but still her poems deal with the general problems and concerns of the time in which she lived. Only 7 of more than 1000 of her poems were published during her lifetime. They were published anonymously.
Robert Lee Frost Robert Frost was born in San Francisco, California, but spent most of his life in New England. New England greatly influenced his poetry. Robert Frost used simple words and ideas in his writing, but his poems were often very profound. He won Pulitzer Prizes in 1924, 1931, 1937 and The United States government awarded him a medal in recognition of his poet, which has enriched the culture of the United States and the philosophy of the world. Robert Lee Frost died in 1963.
Ray Bradbury. Ray Bradbury is an American author of many imaginative science- fiction short stories and five novels. Some of his stories are important, because they discuss the hazards of runaway technology. For example, in one of his most famous short stories, The Martian Chronicles, a peaceful civilization on Mars is corrupted and destroyed by materialistic Earthmen. Ray Bradbury has also written stage plays and several television and motion-picture screenplays, including Moby Dick (with John Houston). b.1920
Ansel Adams Ansel Adams was a famous photographer, who is best known for his black-and- white Iandscapes. Mane of his photos are of the great national parks of the American West. His photos are so beautiful that visitors of the national parks who have seen Adams photos are often disappointed when they see the real thing! Ansel Adams died in 1984.
Georgia OKeefe Georgia OKeefe was a popular American painter. She was born in Wisconsin. She was the child of an Irish father and a Hungarian-Dutch mother. Georgia OKeefe had a unique style of painting. She took natural objects such as flowers and painted them in their simplest from. She often painted close-ups of her subjects. She loved the deserts in the state of New Mexico so much that she moved there in Cows skulls and оther bare bones found in the desert became common subjects in her paintings. Other subjects included rocks, clouds, and the horizon lines of the desert. Paintings by Georgia OKeefe can be found at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Norman Rockwell Norman Rockwell was a very popular American Illustrator. He usually painted events in small American towns or American family life. Many of his paintings tell funny stories. He even did illustrations for editions of Mark Twains The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Since his death, Rockwells paintings have become Valuable collectors items. Norman Rockwell was born in 1978.
Walt Disney Walt Disney was an American artist and film producer, who was famous for his animated cartoons. He developed many new techniques in producing cartoons. His most famous characters are Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Pluto. In the 1950s and 1960s, Walt Disney began developing the family-entertainment parks, Disneyland and Disney World. Walt Disney died in 1966.
Chuck Jones. b.1912 Charles Martin Jones is a popular American animator. He was born in 1912 in Spokane, Washington, but grew up in Los Angeles, California. His family moved around a lot, so they lived in rented houses. His parents strongly encouraged him to read. The author that most influenced his work was Mark Twain. Every one of their rented house had a library. Chuck Jones once said, We didnt have a phonograph until I was twelve, a radio until I was seventeen, or a television until I was forty-six. So that left books… One fateful day out family moved into a rented house, furnished with a complete set of Mark Twain, and my life changed forever. He especially liked Mark Twains description of a coyote, which inspired the creation of one of Jones most popular characters, Wile E. Coyote. Chuck Jones also perfected Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck, and created the Roadrunner. These are all popular cartoon characters you can see on television in America. Chuck Jones also helped to design an the Capital Childrens Museum in Washington, D.C. he exhibition is an animation studio where children learn how to animate cartoons!
Orville and Wilbur Wright. The Wright brothers invented, built, and flew the first airplane on December 7,1903, at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. They reported their flight in a letter to government officials in Washington, D.C., but such an achievement was considered impossible. Therefore, their letter was ignored. It was not until 1908 that the Wright brothers gained worldwide fame. You can see the Kitty Hawk Flyer on display at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C
Christopher Columbus. Christopher Columbus set off from the south coast of Spain in He wanted to go to India. But he didnt find it. He went west and reached the Bahamas in America. Columbus discovered the New World. He explored the coasts and named some island there. Columbus met the people who already lived there and discovered potatoes and sweet corn. And he saw some strange trees with big yellow fruit. They were cocoa trees
Henry Ford Henry Ford was born in He was a man who transformed the world. The car he built changed the lives of people everywhere. In 1896, Ford succeeded in building an automobile powered by a gasoline engine. He built this engine in his kitchen sink. In 1903, Henry Ford established the Ford Motor Company and introduced the Model T Ford. Henry Ford wanted to make a car that everyone would be able to afford. He was able to lower the price of the Model T from $850 to $360 by introducing mass production assembly line techniques. On a assembly line each person has one specific job and, therefore, can do it faster and more efficiently.
Alexander Graham Bell Alexander Graham Bell was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, in He invented the first telephone in 1876 and became a citizen of the United States in Bell was a modest humanitarian who once told his family that he would rather be remembered as a teacher of the deaf than as the inventor of the telephone. Both his mother and his wife were deaf. In tribute to Scotland and America, the inscription on Bells garve reads: Born in Edinburgh… died a citizen of the United States of America.
Tomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson was born in Virginia in He is best known as the third president of the United States ( ) and the author of the Declaration of Independence. But he (1776) was also a self-taught architect. He introduced the simple classical design to America when he designed the Virginia State Capitol building. He also designed his own home. Jefferson remained the most influential architect of his time.
John C. Portman Jr. b Born December 4, 1924, Portman has lived in Atlanta most of his life. He attended the U. S. Naval Academy and served in the U. S. Navy during World War II. He received a Bachelors of Science in architecture from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Portman opened his own firm in1953. He has designed and developed projects in major U. S., European and Asian cities. Two books have been written about his work. Atlanta is the city of tours. It has helicopter tours, boat tours, but tours, walking tours and, of course, glass elevators tours. Glass elevators offer views of Atlanta scenery and operate 24-hours a day free of charge. Many outdoor elevators provide a panoramic view of the citys landscape and structure. Wonderful glass elevators located vertically along the buildings are designed by John C. Portman.
Frank Lloyd Wright Frank Lloyd Wright is the greatest American architect of all times. During his 70-year professional career, he made important contributions to the modern movement in architecture. Wrights mother gave him paper, blocks, and other simple material to play with when he was young. She would help him arrange these materials to build things. He later said that this training affected his architecture. Wright introduced many new concepts to contemporary architecture. He believed that the design of a building should depend on its purpose. He actually changed the way Americans lived. He designed homes that were less crowded and had more space. You can see his concept of space in motion in his design of the Guggenheim Museum in New York City.
Elvis Presley Elvis Presley was known as The King of rock nroll. He was born in Mississippi in At the age of 13, Elvis and his family moved to Memphis, Tennessee. There Elvis recorder his first song in He sold millions of records, served in the army, moved to Hollywood and appeared in 33 films. Elvis brought together the musical sounds of the blacks in America and country people. His songs started a new period in American music. Elvis was the most popular performer of his day. At the news of his death in 1977, thousands of people gathered outside his home in Memphis. Elvis songs are still popular today. People love to imitate him. There is even an Elvis Presley Impersonation Society. Elvis impersonators dress up like Elvis and sing on stage. Some of them actually wish they were Elvis!
Louis Armstrong. Louis Armstrong was a singer and trumpet player, who was a major force in shaping jazz music in America in the 1920s. He introduced new ideas to jazz and was known as the Kind of Jazz. Louis Armstrong was the first jazz soloist to receive worldwide recognition. His musical career began in the streets of New Orleans, where he sang for pennies with other poor black children. His unique style had a major influence on his generation of trumpeters as well as other instrumentalists
Barbra Streisand. b.1942 Barbra Streisand is an American singer and actress. Her beautiful voice and outgoing personality have made her one of the most successful performers in contemporary times. She was born in Brooklyn, New York in Her Broadway performance in the musical Funny Girl in 1964 made her a major star.
Stephen Spielberg. b.1947 Stephen Spielberg is regarded as the most successful director in Hollywood today. He is well known for his imaginative movie making and has helped to create a new generation of filmmakers. His 1982 movie E.T. is about the adventures of a frightened extraterrestrial creature stranded on earth. E.T. is a childrens movie and a character loved by children and adults!
Harriet Tubman Harriet Tubman was born into slavery in 1821 and began working in a field at an early age. She was illiterate. That means she never learned how to read or write. Tubman escaper to the North in 1849 and then returned to the South to help lead more that 300 slaves to freedom. She continued to work for the equal rights of black people until the day she died in 1913.
Abraham Lincoln The life story of the sixteenth president of the United States is famous, because it has become the typical story of American success. Abraham Lincoln was born in a log cabin to a poor family and grew up to become the President of the United States. He only attended school for a total of about one year. With the help of his stepmother, he taught himself how to read and write. Abraham Lincoln is well-known and loved by Americans for his honesty, intelligence, and humanity. When Lincoln was elected president in 1860, the question of slavery had become the most controversial national issue. Lincoln strongly opposed slavery. About six weeks after his inauguration, the American Civil War began. The Civil war was a was between the North and the South over the issue of slavery. In 1863, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, giving political freedom to three million blacks living in the South. The Proclamation restored the anti-slavery clause which had been cut from the Declaration of Independence. Abraham Lincoln was assassinated by John Wilkes Booth, a popular young actor, during a theater performance at Fords Theater in Washington, D.C.
Benjamin Franklin Benjamin Franklin was born in Boston, Massachusetts. He was the son of a candle maker. Although his family was poor, he worked hard and became a printer, writer, philosopher, scientist, and diplomat. He believed that only in a democratic country like America could a poor boy have the possibility of becoming one of the most famous and powerful men in the world. His Autobiography is probably the best-known and most widely read autobiography in the world. In this book he summarized his view that through hard work, thrift and honesty a poor man might release himself from the prison of poverty. He wrote many quotations about how to live, such as When you run in debt, you give another power over your liberty. Every morning he asked himself, What good shall I do this day? And every night he asked himself, What good have I done today? Benjamin Franklin was always interested in scientific experiments. He invented the Franklin stove, which produced more heat with less fuel. In 1752, he performed an experiment with a kite and proved the theory that lightning is a from of electricity. He then developed the lightning rod, which saved buildings from fire. Benjamin Franklin also realized he was an American, not an Englishman, and helped to write the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. After the U.S. declared independence in 1776, Franklin lived in France. He was the U.S. Ambassador to France during the American Revolution. He lived in France for nearly a decade, where he used his diplomacy and leadership skills. There he became the symbol of a new nation.
Eleanor Roosevelt Eleanor Roosevelt was one of Americas great reforming leader, who had a big impact on national policy toward youth, blacks, women, and the poor. She worked hard to improve housing, education, health, and the status of minority groups. As the wife of the 32 nd President of the United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt, she was the countrys most active First Lady. She traveled all over the world, giving lectures and meeting with world leaders. She wrote many newspaper and magazine articles and made many radio and television appearances. She advised her husband, wrote many articles, gave lectures all over the world, and worked with all level of government to improve housing, education, and health in the United States. After her husbands death she was appointed delegate to the United Nations, where she helped write the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. After her husbands death, Eleanor Roosevelt was appointed by two presidents to serve as a member of the United Nations. She was interested in refugee matters. For years Eleanor Roosevelt was called the most admired woman in the world.
Andrei Sakharov Andrei Dmitriyevich Sakharov was a distinguished scientist and a great human being. In the modern world heroes are hard to find, but they are essential to the improvement of society. Andrei Sakharov was one of the best representatives of humankind. He could teach and inspire. His influence was consistent and increasing at the time of his untimely death. Sakharov received the honour and glory of his country for his outstanding work in physics which led to the Soviet hydrogen bomb. He could have spent the rest of his life in wealth enjoying the respect of his countrymen, but when he saw abuse of power, he chose instead to use his prestige to fight the authorities who had recently honoured him. He was treated with unbelievable indignity and cruelty. He was not allowed to continue his scientific work. He was exiled and he and his wife were denied needed medical attention. But he acted with strong willpower and firmness. It was hard to make him submit. Many refused to accept Sakharov as a hero because of his sot and steady voice, untypical for this world of ours. He was without affectation, but firm and reliable. To the credit of M. Gorbachev Sakharov was freed, and even allowed to travel abroad. Again that would have been a time to relax. Instead he continued to stand his ground- to struggle for democracy. He never criticized the system, however, without offering constructive proposals. He risked not only his career but physical harm by speaking out when too many others were silent. Nevertheless, his conscience and his civic duty, not his welfare, guided his actions. Andrei Sakharov set a standard for the modern hero. Few will achieve his level, but many will fight injustice more fiercely because of his example. Sakharov can be called a steady and lucid flame of the nation. He was, for all his idealism, a profound political thinker. People like Sakharov are marked with a seal of Providence. In a sea of immorality, someone has to carry the burden of providing an example of morality. It is a heavy burden. His live was a feat, his death, a soldiers death, was symbolic. Andrei Dmitriyevich Sakharov died in 1989.
Archibald Joseph Cronin A. J. Cronin, a Scottish novelist and physician, was born in Scotland. He became a doctor, dreaming of his own practice and scientific investigations, but he had to join the military service, and served as a surgeon in the Navy during World War I. After the war he worked as a doctor in South Wales among miners and described what he saw in his books The Citadel and The Stars Look down. Soon he moved to London where although he was a modest, unknown doctor, he became popular. In 1930 A. J. Cronin fell ill and gave up his practice. Needing a long rest he moved to Scotland where he devoted himself to literature entirely. His main works are: The Stars Look Down (1934), The Citadel(1937), The Keys to the Kingdom(1941), The Green Years(1944), and Snannons Way(1945), among others. They are all quite important in English literature of this century. They make his readers think about the meaning of life, relations between people and their fates in contemporary society.
Arkhip Ivanovich Kuinji Kuinji was one of the greatest landscapists of the close of the 19 th century. He painted many big canvases in which he created majestic and poetic images of our country. An amazing feature of Kuinjis work is the breadth of his range: his paintings convey the charm of nature in the north, in the south of the Ukraine, and in central Russia. He especially liked to portray the unique beauty that beauty that bright sunlight or cold moonlight communicates to a landscape. The earliest of Kuinjis paintings exhibited at the Tretyakov Gallery is a landscape On the isle of Valaam. In a letter to P. M. Tretyakov, I. Y. Repin wrote: The picture shows the stern northern nature. It is also remarkable for its amazing silvery tone… The granite plane is illumined by cold sunlight; in the distance, the woods over a small river and the weeds disappear in the gloom under heavy clouds… The well-known painting Birch Copse(1879) is arresting for the beautiful effect in it of light and shadow and the delightfully graceful silhouettes of trees against a pale-blue sky. Birch Copse is outgoing for its generalized composition and drawing. In it the painter has masterfully conveyed the coolness in the grove, spots of sunlight falling on a meadow through the foliage, and the velvet of lush grass. After a Thunder-Storm(1878) is also built up on a picturesque contrast between a wet meadow lit up by the sun and a dark leaden cloud receding into the distance. The Dnieper in the Morning(1881) is likewise one of Kuinjis best works. In it the painter dives a view of his beloved Dnieper wrapped in morning mist as seen from a steep bank overgrown with grass and its tranquil and smooth course among his native fields. Night on the Dnieper(1880), in which Kuinji masterfully shows a sparkling reflection of the moon on the surface of the river, is a very striking painting.
Ethel Lilian Voynich Ethel Lilian Voynich was an English writer. She was born in 1864 in the family of George Bull, an Irish professor mathematics. In her youth she had to experience many hardships. Under the influence of her husband, a Polish revolutionary named Mikhail Voynich, she got interested in illegal revolutionary work. In the 1890s she turned to literature, and in 1897 the novel The Gadfly appeared. The action of the novel takes place in the 1830s and 40s. The main theme of the book is the struggle of the people of Italy for national independence against the Austrian rulers. The main characters of the novel – Arthur Burton, Gemma, Martini – are the most active members of the secret society Free Italy. Arthur Burton, an eighteen- year-old student of philosophy, makes up his mind to devote himself to the liberation Italy. He thinks that God will help the people. However, betrayed by Padre Montanelli, the man he loved with all his heart, he realizes that religion helps the enemy. He leaves Italy for the Argentine, where he fight for the liberation of that country. He returns to Italy thirteen years later, talking up the name of Feliche Rivares, a journalist, who has a bad reputation of being ruthless to his enemies. He writes pamphlets against the church and signs them with The Gadfly. The Gadfly is a man of strong passions and willpower. He loves life passionately, but he is ready to die for his ideas because they mean more to him than his own life. His enemies execute him, but the book is full of confidence in the revolutionaries.
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoi I. N. Kramskoi, the famous painter, was also a publicist, art critic and theorist, the ideologist of the progressive artists of the latter half of the 19 th century in Russia. He was also one of the organisers of the Society of Travelling Art Exhibitions, to which the best of the realistic artists belonged. Kramskoi was born in Ostrogozhsk, Voronezh Gubernia. As he was the son of a scribe, he had to start working early, and found employment as a retoucher in a photographers studio. In 1857 he was accepted in the Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg. Throughout his life Kramskoi struggled for a vigorous, national art expressing progressive ideas, and his influence on his own generation of painters was great. He was an untiring fighter against everything false in art, against art that existed apart from reality and from the interests of the people, and which he termed a frivolous pastime of empty people and parasites. The best of his paintings are permeated with deep sympathy towards man and his inner life. He was in the main, a portrait painter, attaining in this genre not only unmistakable likeness, but also striking revelations of the spiritual and intellectual world of his models, as for example in the portraits of the writers Leo Tolstoi, N. Nekrasov, M. Saltykof-Shchedrin, the sculptor M. Antokolsky and other. Portrait of L. N. Tolstoi(1873) is one of the best example of realistic and psychological portraits. The portrait does not dazzle one by its colours, which are reserved and few or by a striking pose, as Tolstoi, wearing a plain shirt, is seated with his legs crossed and his hands folded on his knee in with his legs crossed and his hands folded on his knee in a very natural and simple attitude. At the same time the portrait is striking by the depth of its inner characterisation. The writer sits facing straight ahead, and his expression is one nearing sternness in its concentration. The artist has caught Tolstois intent and piercing gaze with great mastery. The Stranger(1883) is another of the artists outstanding works. It is not a portrait of an individual woman, whose name has been forgotten or concealed by the painter, but, rather, a generalisation. Her face is beautiful, as are her eyes, shaded by heavy, dark lashes, her velvet coat, trimmed with fluffy fur and her whole figure, sharply accentuated against the haze of the winter day in St. Petersburg, are done with great mastery.
Jerome Klapka Jerome In the history of English literature Jerome K. Jerome occupies a modest place, He cannot be compared with such literary figures as Dickens, Thackeray or Bernard Shaw, but he is well known as a writer-humorist not only in his country but in other countries too. Jerome Klapka Jerome was born in England, on May 2, 1859 in the family of a ruined businessman. The family moved to London, but there too the father was unsuccessful and could not pay his debts. Jeromes childhood was poor and sad. He could not finish school because his father died in 1871 and the boy had to begin working to support his family. With the help of his fathers old friend he got the place of a clerk in the London Railway Office and received two pounds a week. Office work did not interest Jerome, and he took up teaching, journalism and acting. For three years he was an actor, first in amateur performances, later at small theatres. He had to play different parts. In Hamlet, as he wrote about it later, he had to play all the parts except that of Ophelia. But he had very little money and often went hungry and had no place to sleep in. In his free moments Jerome tried to write. He wrote plays, stories and articles. But nothing was published. His first literary success was a one-act comedy which was performed in the Globe Theatre in 1886 and ran there for some time. In 1889 a collection of his articles and short stories about theatre life was published. At the same time Jerome began to publish some of his articles which later made up a book under the title The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow. This book became very popular in England. In the same year, Jeromes best book Three Men in a Boat also came out. The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow and Three Men in a Boat made the author famous. The books were translated into several European languages. In the following years Jerome produced several books and plays. He went travelling all over Europe and in 1899 he visited Petersburg where he was met with enthusiasm. He knew well Russia literature. Jerome k. Jerome also tried to write serious books but the readers did not like them. Several times Jerome expressed his anticolonial views on the policy of Britain in China and other countries of the East. He also criticised German imperialism. Jeromes last book was his autobiography My Life and Time. He died in 1927.
Karl Pavlovich Bryullov The art of the genius Karl, as Bryullov was called by his contemporaries, was marked by virtuosity in brushwork, unusual mastery in drawing and a brilliant knowledge of the laws of composition. Karl Bryullov was essentially an adherent of the Russian romantic movement. Like the French romantic painter Delacroix he often chose as his theme a dramatic historical event. One of the best known of such works was his Last Day o Pompeii(painted in Italy, , the Russian Museum in St. Petersburg), with its sharp contrast of the terrifying spectacle of natures blind destruction and human nobility. The masterly execution reflects the excellent training he has received at the Fine Arts Academy in St. Petersburg, whose member he was made and where he was later to teach. The painting was a tremendous success both in Russia and abroad. It was acclaimed by Walter Scott, and the artist was awarded a gold medal at an exhibition at the Louvre in Bryullov was elected honorary member of the Fine Arts academies of Milan, Bologna, Florence and Parma. At home he was henceforth the recognised coryphaeus of academic painting. He shared the romantic interest in the East and made a trip around Greece and Turkey in the 1830s. He made some masterly sketches of fighters of the Greek liberation struggle, which served as material for his subsequent large water colour Sweet Waters Near Constantinople. He excelled as a portrait painter. One of his best portraits was painted for a lottery, of which the proceeds were to be devoted to buying a serf pupil his freedom. The pupil was Taras Shevchenko, who was to become the Ukrainian national poet and artist. In his self-portrait (1848, Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow) he depicts himself ailing physically and morally after an illness which had overtaken him at the height of his power. The rich, varied palette – the pale, wan face, the golden curls, the deep, warm red of the armchair and the dark-brown shirt – testify to more than a passing familiarity with the 17 th – century Flemish masters. His habit of keeping his eyes wide open to reality, a result of his training at the Academy, ensured that his romanticism always retained strong undercurrents of realism.
Mikhail Lomonosov. Mikhail Lomonosov was born in 1711 in the family of a fisherman in the northern coastal village of Denisovka not far from Arkhangelsk. When he was ten years of age his father began to take him sea fishing. That dangerous life taught the precacious youngster to observe the phenomena of nature more closely. During the long winter nights the boy studied his letters, grammar and arithmetic diligently. Since he was the son of a peasant, he was refused admission to the town school, so he walked to Moscow. By concealing his peasant origin he gained admission to the Slavonic-Greek-Latin Academy and for five years lived from hand to mouth on 3 kopecks a day. The noblemens sons studying with him made fun of the twenty-year-old giant, who despite their jeers and his own desperate poverty, made rapid progress. After 5 years came the chance of entering the Academy of Sciences as there werent enough noble-born students to fill the quota. His ability and diligence attracted the attention of the professors, and as one of the best students he was sent abroad. He spent all the time there in delving into the work of leading European scientists studying chemistry, metallurgy, mining and mathematics. On his return to Russia in 1745 he was made a professor and the first Russian scientist to become a member of the Academy of Sciences. For versatility Lomonosov has no equal in Russian and world science. Many of his ideas and discoveries won recognition only in the 19 th century. He was the first to discovered the vegetable origin of coal, for instance, and as a poet and scientist he played an eminent role in the formations of the Russia literary language, eliminating distortions and unnecessary foreign borrowings. He had a great thirst for knowledge. The great son of the Russia people Mikhail Lomonosov died in His living memorial is the Moscow University which he founded in How he would have appreciated the gigantic building which stands on the hills where Napoleon stood in 1812 to watch Moscow burn
Robert Burns R. Burns was the greatest poet of the 18 th century. He is famous all over Scotland. One has only to speak to Scotchmen to feel the deep love and admiration for their outstanding countryman. R. Burns was born in the picturesque village of Alloway. His father was a poor farmer, but it was from his father that Robert received his learning and his love for books. His mother had a beautiful voice and taught him old Scottish songs and ballads, which he later turned into his best poems. At the age of 13 Robert began to work on the farm together with his father. Robert was a handsome young man, but he often suffered from illnesses because of the hard work and bad food. After his fathers death the young poet had to support his large family. His farming was a failure and he thought of leaving for Jamaica. In 1786 a few friends of Robert helped him to publish his first volume of poems. As the book was an immediate success, Robert Burns went to Edinburgh. He came into contact with some literary circles. He toured Scotland and Northern England collecting ballads and folk-tales. His countrymen loved their poet for his patriotism. Robert Burns died at the age of 37 at Dumfries, where he had serves as a tax collector for the last 6 years of his life. Upon his death he was declared the national poet of Scotland, and his birthday on Jan. 25, is always celebrated as a national holiday. Robert Burns is one of the most popular song writers of English literature. The whole world sings his songs: Auld Lang Syne, the tender love song A red, red rose, My Hearts in the Highlands. His lovely poems are translated into many languages. The democratic and revolutionary spirit of Burnss poetry brought him close to the revolutionary romantics of the 19 th century.