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With the death of Sardanapalus, the great monarch of Assyria, and the taking of Nineveh, the capital city, by the Medes, the kingdom of Assyria came to an end, and the vast domain was parcelled out among the conquerors. At the time of the catastrophe, the district of Babylonia, with its capital city Babylon, was ruled as a dependent satrapy of Assyria by Nabopolassar. Aided by the Medes, he now took possession of the province and established... more...

Some of Arnold's biographers have declared that he was a very vicious boy, and have chiefly illustrated this fact by painting him as a ruthless robber of birds'-nests. But a great many boys who began life by robbing birds'-nests have ended it much more creditably. The astonishing and interesting element in Benedict Arnold's career was what one might term the anomaly and incongruity of his treason. Born at Norwich, Conn., in 1741, he was blessed... more...

MARSHAL TURENNE(1611-1675)   Henri de la Tour d'Auvergne, Vicomte de Turenne, esteemed, after Napoleon, the greatest of French generals, was born September 16, 1611. He was the second son of the Duc de Bouillon, Prince of Sedan, and of Elizabeth of Nassau, daughter of the celebrated William of Orange, to whose courage and talents the Netherlands mainly owed their deliverance from Spain. Both parents being zealous Calvinists, Turenne was... more...

Phidias, one of the greatest sculptors the world has seen, and whose name has become, as it were, the synonym of his art, was born at Athens about 500 B.C. He belonged to a family of artists, none of whom indeed were distinguished in their profession, but their varied occupations furnished the atmosphere in which such a talent as that of Phidias could best be fostered and brought to maturity. His father was Charmides, who is believed to have been... more...

The poems of Homer differ from all other known poetry in this, that they constitute in themselves an encyclopædia of life and knowledge at a time when knowledge, indeed, such as lies beyond the bounds of actual experience, was extremely limited, but when life was singularly fresh, vivid, and expansive. The only poems of Homer we possess are the "Iliad" and the "Odyssey," for the Homeric hymns and other productions lose all title to stand in... more...


AN OUTLINE NARRATIVE TRACING BRIEFLY THE CAUSES, CONNECTIONS, AND CONSEQUENCES OF THE GREAT EVENTS THE RECENT DAYS (1910-1914) CHARLES F. HORNE The awful, soul-searing tragedy of Europe's great war of 1914 came to most men unexpectedly. The real progress of the world during the five years preceding the war had been remarkable. All thinkers saw that the course of human civilization was being changed deeply, radically; but the changes were... more...

"After us, the deluge!" said Louis XV of France. He died in 1774, and the remaining quarter of the eighteenth century witnessed social changes the most radical, the most widespread which had convulsed civilization since the fall of Rome. "As soon as our peasants seek education," said Catharine II of Russia to one of her ministers, "neither you nor I will retain our places." Catharine, one of the shrewdest women of her day, judged her own people... more...

uring the eighteenth century a remarkable change swept over Europe. The dominant spirit of the time ceased to be artistic as in the Renaissance, or religious as in the Reformation, or military as during the savage civil wars that had followed. The central figure of the world was no longer a king, nor a priest, nor a general. Instead, the man on whom all eyes were fixed, who towered above his fellows, was a mere author, possessed of no claim to... more...

CHARLES F. HORNE It is related that in 1661, on the day following the death of the great Cardinal Mazarin, the various officials of the State approached their young King, Louis XIV. "To whom shall we go now for orders, Your Majesty?" "To me," answered Louis, and from that date until his death in 1715 they had no other master. Whether we accept the tale as literal fact or only as the vivid French way of visualizing a truth, we find here the... more...

THE GREAT EVENTS (ERA OF POLITICAL-RELIGIOUS WARS) CHARLES F. HORNE Gazing across the broader field of universal history, one comes more and more to overlook the merely temporary, constantly shifting border lines of states, and to see Western Europe as a whole, to watch its nations as a single people guided by similar developments of the mind, impelled by similar stirrings of the heart, taking part in but a single story, the marvellous tale of... more...