archive-com.com » COM » B » BRITANNICA.COM

Total: 1375

Choose link from "Titles, links and description words view":

Or switch to "Titles and links view".
  • American civil rights movement | Britannica.com
    accompanied by brutal suppression of American Indians and increasing restrictions on free blacks Slave owners in the South reacted to the 1831 Nat Turner slave revolt in Virginia by passing laws to discourage antislavery activism and prevent the teaching of slaves to read and write Despite this repression a growing number of African Americans freed themselves from slavery by escaping or negotiating agreements to purchase their freedom through wage labour By the 1830s free black communities in the Northern states had become sufficiently large and organized to hold regular national conventions where black leaders gathered to discuss alternative strategies of racial advancement In 1833 a small minority of whites joined with black antislavery activists to form the American Anti Slavery Society under the leadership of William Lloyd Garrison Frederick Douglass became the most famous of the ex slaves who joined the abolition movement His autobiography one of many slave narratives and his stirring orations heightened public awareness of the horrors of slavery Although black leaders became increasingly militant in their attacks against slavery and other forms of racial oppression their efforts to secure equal rights received a major setback in 1857 when the U S Supreme Court rejected African American citizenship claims The Dred Scott decision stated that the country s founders had viewed blacks as so inferior that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect This ruling by declaring unconstitutional the Missouri Compromise 1820 through which Congress had limited the expansion of slavery into western territories ironically strengthened the antislavery movement because it angered many whites who did not own slaves The inability of the country s political leaders to resolve that dispute fueled the successful presidential campaign of Abraham Lincoln the candidate of the antislavery Republican Party Lincoln s victory in turn prompted the Southern slave states to secede and form the Confederate States of America in 1860 61 Emancipation Proclamation The Granger Collection New York Although Lincoln did not initially seek to abolish slavery his determination to punish the rebellious states and his increasing reliance on black soldiers in the Union army prompted him to issue the Emancipation Proclamation 1863 to deprive the Confederacy of its slave property After the American Civil War ended Republican leaders cemented the Union victory by gaining the ratification of constitutional amendments to abolish slavery Thirteenth Amendment and to protect the legal equality of ex slaves Fourteenth Amendment and the voting rights of male ex slaves Fifteenth Amendment Despite those constitutional guarantees of rights almost a century of civil rights agitation and litigation would be required to bring about consistent federal enforcement of those rights in the former Confederate states Moreover after federal military forces were removed from the South at the end of Reconstruction white leaders in the region enacted new laws to strengthen the Jim Crow system of racial segregation and discrimination In its Plessy v Ferguson decision 1896 the Supreme Court ruled that separate but equal facilities for African Americans did not violate the

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/event/American-civil-rights-movement (2016-02-13)
    Open archived version from archive

  • Great Depression | economy | Britannica.com
    America fell into depression in late 1928 and early 1929 slightly before the U S decline in output While some less developed countries experienced severe depressions others such as Argentina and Brazil experienced comparatively mild downturns Japan also experienced a mild depression which began relatively late and ended relatively early Dates of the Great Depression in various countries in quarters country depression began recovery began United States 1929 3 1933 2 United Kingdom 1930 1 1932 4 Germany 1928 1 1932 3 France 1930 2 1932 3 Italy 1929 3 1933 1 Japan 1930 1 1932 3 Canada 1929 2 1933 2 Belgium 1929 3 1932 4 The Netherlands 1929 4 1933 2 Sweden 1930 2 1932 3 Switzerland 1929 4 1933 1 Denmark 1930 4 1933 2 Poland 1929 1 1933 2 Czechoslovakia 1929 4 1933 2 Argentina 1929 2 1932 1 Brazil 1928 3 1931 4 India 1929 4 1931 4 South Africa 1930 1 1933 1 Peak to trough decline in industrial production in various countries annual data country decline United States 46 8 United Kingdom 16 2 Germany 41 8 France 31 3 Italy 33 0 Japan 8 5 Canada 42 4 Belgium 30 6 The Netherlands 37 4 Sweden 10 3 Denmark 16 5 Poland 46 6 Czechoslovakia 40 4 Argentina 17 0 Brazil 7 0 The general price deflation evident in the United States was also present in other countries Virtually every industrialized country endured declines in wholesale prices of 30 percent or more between 1929 and 1933 Because of the greater flexibility of the Japanese price structure deflation in Japan was unusually rapid in 1930 and 1931 This rapid deflation may have helped to keep the decline in Japanese production relatively mild The prices of primary commodities traded in world markets declined even more dramatically during this period For example the prices of coffee cotton silk and rubber were reduced by roughly half just between September 1929 and December 1930 As a result the terms of trade declined precipitously for producers of primary commodities Great Depression evicted sharecroppers along a road in southeastern Missouri 1939 Arthur Rothstein Farm Security Administration Library of Congress Washington D C LC DIG fsa 8a10410 The U S recovery began in the spring of 1933 Output grew rapidly in the mid 1930s real GDP rose at an average rate of 9 percent per year between 1933 and 1937 Output had fallen so deeply in the early years of the 1930s however that it remained substantially below its long run trend path throughout this period In 1937 38 the United States suffered another severe downturn but after mid 1938 the American economy grew even more rapidly than in the mid 1930s The country s output finally returned to its long run trend path in 1942 Recovery in the rest of the world varied greatly The British economy stopped declining soon after Great Britain abandoned the gold standard in September 1931 although genuine recovery did not begin until the end

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/event/Great-Depression (2016-02-13)
    Open archived version from archive

  • Ottoman Empire | Facts, History, & Map | Britannica.com
    had been gained during the Interregnum In 1422 23 Murad suppressed the Balkan resistance and put Constantinople under a new siege that ended only after the Byzantines provided him with huge amounts of tribute He then restored Ottoman rule in Anatolia and eliminated all Turkmen principalities left by Timur with the exceptions of Karaman and Candar Jandar which he left autonomous though tributary so as not to excite the renewed fears of Timur s successors in the East Murad then inaugurated the first Ottoman war with the city state of Venice 1423 30 which had maintained friendly relations with the sultans in order to develop a strong trade position in the Ottoman dominions but had accepted Salonika present day Thessaloníki Greece from Byzantium in order to prevent Ottoman expansion across Macedonia to the Adriatic Sea its lifeline for trade with the rest of the world The war was indecisive for some time Venice was diverted by conflicts in Italy and in any case lacked the force to meet the Ottomans on land while the Ottomans needed time to build a naval force sufficient to compete with that of the Venetians In addition Murad was diverted by an effort of Hungary to establish its rule in Walachia between the Danube and the Transylvanian Alps a move that inaugurated a series of Ottoman Hungarian conflicts which were to occupy much of the remainder of his reign Murad finally built a fleet strong enough to blockade Salonika and enable his army to conquer it in 1430 Subsequent Ottoman naval raids against Venetian ports in the Adriatic and the Aegean seas compelled Venice in 1432 to make a peace in which it abandoned its efforts to prevent the Ottoman advance to the Adriatic but was allowed to become the leading commercial power in the sultan s dominions Murad who had been put on the throne by Turkish notables who had joined the Ottoman state during the first century of its existence soon began to resent the power they had gained in return the power of those notables was also enhanced by the great new estates they had built up in the conquered areas of Europe and Anatolia To counteract their power he began to build up the power of various non Turkish groups in his service particularly those composed of Christian slaves and converts to Islam whose military arm was organized into a new infantry organization called the Janissary Yeniçeri New Force corps To strengthen that group Murad began to distribute most of his new conquests to its members and to add new supporters of that sort he developed the famous devşirme system by which Christian youths were drafted from the Balkan provinces for conversion to Islam and life service to the sultan With their revenues and numbers increasing the devşirme men and their supporters achieved considerable political power Because the new European conquests were being used by the sultan to build up the devşirme they wanted the conquests to continue and expand while the Turkish notables whose power was diminished by the increasing status of the devşirme opposed further conquest Murad wanting to return to aggressive policies of European expansion in order to help the devşirme reduce the power of the Turkish notables renewed the struggle with Hungary in Serbia and Walachia in 1434 He took advantage of the death in 1437 of the Hungarian king Sigismund to reoccupy Serbia except Belgrade and to ravage much of Hungary He then annexed Serbia in 1439 beginning a policy of replacing the vassals with direct Ottoman rule throughout the empire Hungarian control of Belgrade became the primary obstacle to large scale advances north of the Danube Ottoman attacks on Belgrade and raids on Transylvania failed to move the Hungarians largely because of the leadership of János Hunyadi originally a leader of the Walachian border resistance to the ghazis in 1440 42 Although Murad finally defeated Hunyadi at the Battle of Zlatica İzladi in 1443 the increased influence of the Turkish notables at Murad s court led the sultan to agree to the Peace of Edirne in 1444 By its terms Serbia regained its autonomy Hungary kept Walachia and Belgrade and the Ottomans promised to end their raids north of the Danube In 1444 Murad also made peace with his main Anatolian enemy Karaman and retired to a life of religious contemplation voluntarily passing the throne to his young son Mehmed II Mehmed already showed the leadership qualities that were to distinguish his long reign though at that time he relied primarily on devşirme supporters for advice and assistance The Byzantines and Pope Eugenius IV sought to use the opportunity created by the rule of a youthful and inexperienced sultan to expel the Ottomans from Europe organizing a new Crusade joined by Hungary and Venice after the pope assured them that they were not bound to honour the peace treaty they had signed with Muslim infidels A Crusader army moved through Serbia across the Balkan Mountains to the Black Sea at Varna Bulgaria where it was to be supplied and transported to Constantinople by a Venetian fleet that would sail through the straits while using its power to prevent Murad from returning from Anatolia with the bulk of the Ottoman army Though the Crusaders reached Varna they were left stranded by a Serbian decision to remain loyal to the sultan and by Venetian reluctance to fulfill its part of the agreement for fear of losing its trade position in the event of an Ottoman victory Further quarrels among the Crusade leaders gave Murad time to return from Anatolia and organize a new army The Turkish victory at the Battle of Varna on November 10 1444 ended the last important European Crusading effort against the Ottomans Murad reassumed the throne and restored the power of the devşirme party whose insistent demands for conquest led him to spend the remainder of his reign eliminating the vassals and establishing direct rule in much of Thrace Macedonia Bulgaria and Greece In the process he divided the newly acquired lands into estates the revenues of which further increased the power of the devşirme at the expense of the Turkish notables Only Albania was able to resist because of the leadership of its national hero Skanderbeg George Kastrioti who finally was routed by the sultan at the second Battle of Kosovo 1448 By the time of Murad s death in 1451 the Danube frontier was secure and it appeared that the Ottoman Empire was permanently established in Europe Whereas the victory at Varna brought new power to the devşirme party the grand vizier chief adviser to the sultan Candarlı Halil Paşa was able to retain a dominant position for the Turkish notables whom he led by retaining the confidence of the sultan and by successfully dividing his opponents Prince Mehmed therefore became the candidate of the devşirme and it was only with his accession that they were able to achieve the political and military power made possible by the financial base built up during the previous two decades Mehmed II Rumeli Fortress Istanbul William J Bowe Under Sultan Mehmed II ruled 1451 81 the devşirme increasingly came to dominate and pressed their desire for new conquests in order to take advantage of the European weakness created at Varna Constantinople became their first objective To Mehmed and his supporters the Ottoman dominions in Europe could never reach their full extent or be molded into a real empire as long as their natural administrative and cultural centre remained outside their hands The grand vizier and other Turkish notables bitterly opposed the attack ostensibly because it might draw a new Crusade but in fact because of their fear that the capture of the Byzantine capital might bring about the final triumph of the devşirme Mehmed built Rumeli Fortress on the European side of the Bosporus from which he conducted the siege April 6 May 29 1453 and conquest of Constantinople The transformation of that city into the Ottoman capital of Istanbul marked an important new stage in Ottoman history Internally it meant the end of power and influence for the old Turkish nobility whose leaders were executed or exiled to Anatolia and whose European properties were confiscated and the triumph of the devşirme and their supporters in Istanbul and the West Externally the conquest made Mehmed II the most famous ruler in the Muslim world even though the lands of the old caliphate still remained in the hands of the Mamlūks of Egypt and Timur s successors in Iran Moreover the possession of Constantinople stimulated in Mehmed a desire to place under his dominion not merely the Islamic and Turkic worlds but also a re created Byzantine Empire and perhaps the entire world of Christendom To pursue those objectives Mehmed II developed various bases of power Domestically his primary objective was to restore Istanbul which he had spared from devastation during the conquest as the political economic and social centre of the area that it formerly had dominated He worked to repopulate the city not only with its former inhabitants but also with elements of all the conquered peoples of the empire whose residence and intermingling there would provide a model for a powerful and integrated empire Special attention was paid to restoring Istanbul s industry and trade with substantial tax concessions made to attract merchants and artisans While thousands of Christians and Muslims were brought to the city Greeks and Armenians were disinclined to accept Muslim Ottoman rule and sought to secure new European Crusades Mehmed thus gave special attention to attracting Jews from central and western Europe where they were being subjected to increasing persecution The loyalty of those Jews to the Ottomans was induced by that of their coreligionists in Byzantium who had supported and assisted the Ottoman conquests after the long standing persecution to which they had been subjected by the Greek Orthodox Church and its followers Under Ottoman rule the major religious groups were allowed to establish their own self governing communities called millets each retaining its own religious laws traditions and language under the general protection of the sultan Millets were led by religious chiefs who served as secular as well as religious leaders and thus had a substantial interest in the continuation of Ottoman rule Mehmed used the conquering army to restore the physical structure of the city Old buildings were repaired streets aqueducts and bridges were constructed sanitary facilities were modernized and a vast supply system was established to provide for the city s inhabitants Mehmed also devoted much time to expanding his dominions in Europe and Asia in order to establish his claim to world leadership To that end he eliminated the last vassal princes who might have disputed his claims to be legitimate successor to the Byzantine and Seljuq dynasties establishing direct Ottoman administration in most of the provinces throughout the empire In addition he extended Ottoman rule far beyond the territories inherited from Murad II From 1454 to 1463 he concentrated mainly on southeastern Europe annexing Serbia 1454 55 and conquering the Morea 1458 60 in the process eliminating the last major claimants to the Byzantine throne When Venice refused to surrender its important ports along the Aegean coast of the Morea Mehmed inaugurated the second Ottoman Venetian war 1463 79 In 1461 he annexed Trebizond and the Genoese commercial colonies that had survived along the Black Sea coast of Anatolia including Sinop and Kafa and began the process by which the Crimean Tatar khans were compelled to accept Ottoman suzerainty In 1463 he occupied and annexed Bosnia When Albania continued to hold out helped by supplies sent by sea from Venice Mehmed sent in large numbers of Turkmen irregulars who in the process of conquering Albania settled there and formed the nucleus of a Muslim community that has remained to the present day Since the papacy and Venice were unable to raise a new Crusade in Europe they diverted Mehmed by encouraging attacks by his enemies in the east the Turkmen principality of Karaman and the Tatar Ak Koyunlu White Sheep dynasty which under the leadership of Uzun Ḥasan had replaced Timur s descendants in western Iran Mehmed however skillfully used dynastic divisions to conquer Karaman in 1468 thereby extending direct Ottoman rule in Anatolia to the Euphrates When Uzun Ḥasan responded by invading Anatolia with the support of many Turkmen princes who had been dispossessed by Mehmed Venice intensified its attacks in the Morea Hungary moved into Serbia and Skanderbeg attacked Bosnia Mehmed however was able to defeat each of those enemies In 1473 he routed Uzun Ḥasan who acknowledged Ottoman rule in all of Anatolia and returned to Iran That brought the Ottomans into conflict with the Mamlūk empire of Syria and Egypt which sought to expand into southeastern Anatolia Mehmed neutralized Mamlūk forces though he could not defeat them He then turned to Venice initiating several naval raids along the Adriatic coast that finally led to a peace in 1479 whereby Venice surrendered its bases in Albania and the Morea and agreed to pay a regular annual tribute in return for restoration of its commercial privileges Mehmed then used his new naval power to attack the island of Rhodes and to send a large force that landed at Otranto in southern Italy in 1480 Success appeared imminent but his premature death in 1481 brought the effort to an end Nevertheless Mehmed had laid the foundations for Ottoman rule in Anatolia and southeastern Europe that was to survive for the next four centuries In addition to conquering a large empire Mehmed worked to consolidate it and to codify the political administrative religious and legal institutions developed during the previous century by promulgating a series of secular laws kanun compiled by subject into law codes called kanunname s The immensity of the task however and his diversion in numerous campaigns delayed the process to such an extent that it was completed only during the mid 16th century Mehmed also had only limited success in building the economic and social bases of his empire His most important problem was securing enough money to finance his military expeditions and the new apparatus of government and society The tax systems inherited from his predecessors did not provide the required resources particularly because most of the conquered lands were turned into estates timar s whose taxes went entirely to their holders in return for military and administrative services Mehmed therefore turned to a number of financial expedients that achieved their immediate objectives but at the cost of grave economic and social difficulties He regularly withdrew all coins from circulation and issued new ones with a larger proportion of base metal alloys To enforce acceptance of the new issues he sent armed bands around the empire with the right to confiscate without compensation all the older and more valuable coins that were not being voluntarily exchanged for the new The debasement of the coinage soon caused inflation which greatly disturbed the industry and trade that the sultan had hoped to promote In addition in his search for revenues Mehmed created monopolies over the production and use of essential goods distributing them among the highest bidders who in turn charged excessive prices and created artificial scarcities to secure their profits Finally Mehmed established the principle that all revenue producing property belonged to the sultan In pursuance of that idea he confiscated much private property and religious foundation lands creating tremendous resentment and opposition among those who lost their revenues including members of the religious ulama theologian class the Turkish notables and even some devşirme men whose discontent threatened to undermine both state and sultan It was only by playing those groups off against each other that Mehmed was able to maintain his own position and power and to continue his conquests Ottoman institutions in the 14th and 15th centuries Changing status of the Ottoman rulers Ottoman dynasts were transformed from simple tribal leaders to border princes uc bey s and ghazi leaders under Seljuq and then II Khanid suzerainty in the 13th and early 14th centuries With the capture of Bursa Orhan had been able to declare himself independent of his suzerains and assume the title of bey which was retained by his successors until Bayezid I was named sultan by the shadow ʿAbbāsid caliph of Cairo following his victory over the Christian Crusaders at the Battle of Nicopolis 1396 Those title changes reflected changes in the position of the Ottoman ruler within the state and in the organization of the state itself As uc bey and even as bey the Ottoman leader remained little more than a tribal chief sharing administrative and military leadership with the Turkmen tribal chiefs surrounding him Like them he was owed the loyalty and obedience of his followers only so long as he led them to victory and only in relation to his military functions Beyond that he was only one among equals in the councils that decided general internal policies the tribes and clans remained autonomous in their internal affairs The bey was accessible to the tribe and clan leaders as well as to their followers He could intervene in disputes among the clans but jurisdiction was temporary and restricted Muslim law and jurists had little influence whereas Turkish tribal law and custom prevailed In such a situation the idea of rule was very limited Administration was conceived mainly in financial terms with each clan or family or tribe accepting Ottoman military leadership largely for the financial rewards it could bring Ottoman chiefs collected the booty in conquered lands and had the right to collect taxes from lands left in their possession after conquests The only advantage that the bey as tribal war leader had over the chiefs surrounding him was the pençik fifth or right to collect an extra fifth of the booty taken by his followers Because the bey was dependent for his power and revenues on the assent

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/place/Ottoman-Empire (2016-02-13)
    Open archived version from archive

  • E = mc2 | equation | Britannica.com
    the rest energy of hydrogen atoms that are fused to form helium Sidney Perkowitz EB Editors Comments Share Email Print Cite Last Updated 11 25 2015 You may also be interested in string theory general relativity quantum field theory supersymmetry Feynman diagram quantum electrodynamics QED gauge theory unified field theory quantum chromodynamics QCD renormalization electroweak theory supergravity Keep exploring Science Quiz Science Fact or Fiction General Science Fact or Fiction 5 Notorious Greenhouse Gases Off the Hook 10 Sharks Protected From Fishing in American Waters What made you want to look up E mc 2 To From Subject Comments Please limit to 900 characters Cancel Britannica Stories Behind The News Philosophy Religion Healing the Schism Pope Meets Patriarch Behind The News Science Gravitational Waves Observed Spotlight History Thomas Malthus s 250th Birthday See More Stories FEATURED QUIZZES Vocabulary Quiz True or False Spell It See More Quizzes About Us About Our Ads Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Inc MLA style E mc2 Encyclopædia Britannica Encyclopædia Britannica Online Encyclopædia Britannica Inc 2016 Web 12 Feb 2016 http www britannica com science E mc2 equation APA style E mc2 2016 In Encyclopædia Britannica Retrieved from http www britannica com science E mc2 equation Harvard style E mc2 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Online Retrieved 12 February 2016 from http www britannica com science E mc2 equation Chicago Manual of Style Encyclopædia Britannica Online s v E mc2 accessed February 12 2016 http www britannica com science E mc2 equation While every effort has been made to follow citation style rules there may be some discrepancies Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions Update Link Click anywhere inside the article to add text or insert superscripts subscripts and special characters You can

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/science/E-mc2-equation (2016-02-13)
    Open archived version from archive

  • Romanticism | Britannica.com
    to the mid 19th century Romanticism can be seen as a rejection of the precepts of order calm harmony balance idealization and rationality that typified Classicism in general and late 18th century Neoclassicism in particular It was also to some extent a reaction against the Enlightenment and against 18th century rationalism and physical materialism in general Romanticism emphasized the individual the subjective the irrational the imaginative the personal the spontaneous

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/art/Romanticism (2016-02-13)
    Open archived version from archive

  • 6 Places in Shakespeare, Then and Now | Britannica.com
    s list of World Heritage sites 4 Rome Andreas Tille In Julius Caesar Shakespeare did much to render the Roman emperor s death iconic in the Roman Senate Caesar is set upon by a group of conspirators who stab him as he cries out Et tu Brute to his trusted friend Brutus who has sided with the schemers It wasn t until 2012 that archaeologists announced that they had confidently identified the spot where Caesar was killed the Largo di Torre Argentina a square in the center of Rome today filled with ancient ruins and stray cats 3 Forest of Arden Thomas B Hollyman Photo Researchers In As You Like It after a duke is sent into exile by his usurping brother he and his supporters end up in the Forest of Arden It is a place of banishment but it s also a place of freedom from the constraints of court life Shakespeare s Forest of Arden had several real life precedents the Ardennes forest on mainland Europe was one but another was the ancient Forest of Arden in Warwickshire near the town where Shakespeare was born in Stratford on Avon The forest which shared a name with Shakespeare s mother Mary Arden was small at best in Shakespeare s day and is in little evidence today although centuries old trees persist 2 Verona E Streichan Shostal Associates Things didn t end well for Romeo and Juliet in Verona a misunderstanding prompts Romeo to drink poison despair prompts Juliet to stab herself Shakespeare wasn t the only person to tell this story he drew on a popular legend about star crossed lovers in Italy that was well known in England but he helped it to live on for centuries Today thousands of letters addressed to Juliet still arrive in Verona each telling tales of romantic woe the Juliet Club there replies to them all 1 Venice Mikhail Rulkov Shutterstock com Shakespeare s Venice as seen in The Merchant of Venice is a dark place full of rumors and scheming and threatened violence In that play the title character s fate is determined in a courtroom but much of the action takes place in Venice s streets amidst torchbearers and masked partygoers and gondolas and talk of business on the Rialto Today Venice is a major draw for tourism The Rialto is still a bustling hub known for its markets The famous Rialto Bridge traveled millions of times since Shakespeare s play was written was scheduled for extensive repairs and renovation starting in 2014 Your Reaction List Writing Tips from 7 Acclaimed Authors Bad Words 8 Banned Books Through Time MORE Literature Language LISTS 5 Poets of Exile 9 Diagnoses by Charles Dickens 10 Failed Doomsday Predictions View All Comments Britannica Stories Behind The News Philosophy Religion Healing the Schism Pope Meets Patriarch Behind The News Science Gravitational Waves Observed Spotlight History Thomas Malthus s 250th Birthday See More Stories FEATURED QUIZZES Vocabulary Quiz True or False Spell It See

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/list/6-places-in-shakespeare-then-and-now (2016-02-13)
    Open archived version from archive

  • 7 More Domestic Animals and Their Wild Ancestors | Britannica.com
    auratus is now among the most popular pets there is In addition to serving as nearly every child s first lesson in death the awful tradition of passing out fish as prizes at fairs has led to more than one backseat meltdown as a gilded corpse bobbed to the top of a plastic bag full of water goldfish are also a popular foodsource for carnivorous fish in captivity Though many end up the subjects of wryly nihilistic toilet side funerals while still fingerlings goldfish can actually live more than a decade or two if properly cared for 8 Red jungle fowl Gallus gallus Painting by Murrell Butler It was long thought that the red jungle fowl Gallus gallus of India was the sole ancestor of the domestic chicken However recent genetic analysis has revealed that the grey junglefowl Gallus sonneratii contributed genes later in the domestication process it is thought that the Ceylon junglefowl Gallus lafayetti was likely involved in the development of the domestic species as well Initially believed to have been domesticated in the Indus Valley some 4 000 years ago more recent analysis suggests a possible origin in Vietnam as many as 10 000 years ago 7 chickens Gallus gallus domesticus Larry Lefever Grant Heilman Photography Inc Probably originally domesticated for entertainment purposes cockfighting is still popular worldwide if illegal in some places chickens Gallus gallus domesticus are now primarily raised for their meat and eggs most often on an industrial scale that has raised major ethical questions Though most commercially bred birds belong to only a few breeds there are many hundreds of them from muscled Old English game cocks to plump Rhode Island reds Heritage breed preservationists struggle to protect the genetic diversity that emerged as chickens spread across the world and adapted to conditions from the tropics to the near Arctic 6 Wild turkey Meleagris gallopavo Joe McDonald Corbis The wild turkey Meleagris gallopavo was first domesticated in Mexico some 2 000 years ago Though thoughts of turkeys are now more likely to evoke images of a crackling brown carcass about to be mutilated by a self important alpha male we mean your father in the name of holiday tradition Native Americans were more interested in the gorgeous feathers that cover the wild bird s body The iridescent plumes were prized for their ceremonial significance and the birds were not commonly raised until Native Americans in the southwest domesticated them 5 turkeys Bayerische Staatsgem ldesammlungen Munich photograph Joachim Blauel ARTOTHEK Dometic turkeys as we know them now morbidly obese white birds who are genetically engineered to gain huge amounts of fat at an early age are a far cry from the lean glossy birds first sent to Spain in 1519 where they were appreciated for their aesthetic novelty Presumably the grotesque fleshy caruncles on their faces were either part of the charm or were compensated for by the shimmering plumage Though turkeys were undoubtedly a source of food as well industrial scale production did

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/list/7-more-domestic-animals-and-their-wild-ancestors (2016-02-13)
    Open archived version from archive

  • 10 Filmmakers of Cult Status | Britannica.com
    an even bigger budget for his next film Dune 1984 an adaptation of the cult novel series of the same name by Frank Herbert which floundered horribly at the box office and lost the studio millions However over the years this film has gained more and more praise from Dune fanatics claiming that Lynch s artistic vision was adequately realized in a limited time frame that was no fault of his own After the initial flop of Dune however Lynch quickly recovered with the surreal mystery Blue Velvet 1986 which matched if not eclipsed the praise of The Elephant Man As his career progressed the director turned toward television for a brief period and cocreated Twin Peaks in 1990 which again with his bizarre and surrealistic tendencies found a cult following Over and over Lynch s work has found admiration in idiosyncratic niches of the public that have fostered his fame and distinction as a cult director 6 Christopher Guest 1948 A writer director and actor Christopher Guest is one of the only triple threats who can rate himself an 11 out of 10 Guest hopped around Hollywood working on his writing and directing until he teamed with director Rob Reiner to create the sleeper hit This Is Spinal Tap 1984 Credited with writing the script and playing one of the mock band s members Guest proved himself to be a vault of wry wit as he penned and delivered some of the most quotable lines in movies The success of the mock rockumentary led to several TV appearances TV movies and video shorts based on the band which were all well received by its cult following However Guest didn t allow the film to dominate his career as he moved on to play Count Tyrone Rugen the villain in the inconceivably hilarious and oft quoted The Princess Bride 1987 which ended up gaining its own cult status After various television acting writing and directing gigs Guest returned in the 2000s to what he knew best mockumentaries He wrote and directed Best in Show 2000 A Mighty Wind 2003 and For Your Consideration 2006 which satirized the mania involved in dog shows a folk band reunion and the chase for Hollywood accolades respectively Guest employed a recurring cast in all three films that included Jane Lynch Eugene Levy Catherine O Hara and Ed Begley Jr Guest has thus gained a devout following of fans who cherish both his deft handling of scripts and his masterful use of the mockumentary medium 5 The Coen Brothers Joel 1955 and Ethan 1958 Paul Smith Featureflash Shutterstock com The Coen Brothers Joel and Ethan have developed a fervid fan base over their still unfurling careers Their unique comedies and dramas are characterized by their rich symbolism and hapless characters who are rife with idiosyncrasies that add to their depths Some of their most famous characters are the overstressed Barton Fink played by John Turturro the absurdly militant Walter Sobchack John Goodman and no one can forget Jeff Lebowski a k a The Dude Jeff Bridges whose knack for abiding has inspired the religion of Dudeism The brothers initially achieved cult status with the screening of Barton Fink 1991 at the Cannes international film competition where it stunned critics and fans alike with its convoluted plot that was full of subtle symbolism Fans to this day still bicker over the film s overall meaning or whether one can actually be achieved However Joel and Ethan didn t let it end there They put out the darkest of dark comedies Fargo in 1996 which focused on a botched fake kidnapping that ends in tragedy for nearly all involved They followed up that hit with their now iconic The Big Lebowski 1998 which initially fell flat with audiences However once released on DVD the directors fans realized the hilarity of the film and many embraced the cult of Dudeism as way to lead their lives by simply abiding in a mixed up world full of chaos and nihilists The Coen Brothers have continued to produce strong box office turnouts with potent scripts well into the 21st century with a litany of films including The Man Who Wasn t There 2000 No Country for Old Men 2007 and Inside Llewyn Davis 2013 4 Sam Raimi 1959 Marvel Sony Pictures The Kobal Collection This writer director and producer is probably better known by many of his more recent films most notably the widely seen and box office record breaking Spider Man trilogy that featured Toby Maguire Kirsten Dunst and James Franco However he has a much more concentrated fan base for his campy horror Evil Dead trilogy which with its gore that nearly erred on the side of cartoonish and its innovative camerawork revolutionized the horror genre With limited funding Raimi wrote directed and produced The Evil Dead in 1981 which slowly gained fans and earned ticket sales in Europe thus renewing U S distributors interest in the film Realizing that the first was a sleeper hit Raimi put out a sequel in 1987 that featured rawer violence balanced with an injection of campy humor Evil Dead II fared better at the box office thus awarding Raimi the prestige he deserved and the chance to move on to big budget films What followed was a brief experiment with the super hero genre which he would later return to with abounding success before turning back to Evil Dead to finish the trilogy with Army of Darkness 1992 The final installment was laced with a layer of fantasy as the main character time travels to 1300 CE to fight an army of the dead before he can find his way back to his own time Raimi s horror trilogy has persisted as a timeless benchmark in the horror genre and is still fervidly discussed by die hard fans In fact Raimi acknowledged the allegiance of his fans and produced a remake of the original directed by Fede Alvarez in 2013 that

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/list/10-filmmakers-of-cult-status (2016-02-13)
    Open archived version from archive



  •