Ferruccio Lamborghini

Posted in Uncategorized on October 27, 2011 by Patel smital
Automobili Lamborghini Holding S.p.A.

Type Fully owned subsidiary[1]
Industry Automotive
Founded 30 October 1963
Founder(s) Ferruccio Lamborghini
Headquarters Sant'Agata Bolognese, Italy
Area served Worldwide
Key people Stephan Winkelmann,
CEO
Wolfgang Egger,
Head of Design
Products Automobiles
Production output decrease1,227 units (2010)
Revenue US$97.5 million (2002)[2]
Profit US$18.1 million 2006[3]
Owner(s) AUDI AG
Employees 726 (2004)[2]
Parent Volkswagen Group
Website lamborghini.com

Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A.,[Notes 1] commonly referred to as Lamborghini (pronounced [lamborˈgiːni] ( listen)), is an Italian car manufacturer. The company was founded by manufacturing magnate Ferruccio Lamborghini in 1963, with the objective of producing a refined grand touring car to compete with established offerings from marques like Ferrari.

The company's first models were released in the mid-1960s, and were noted for their refinement, power and comfort. Lamborghini gained wide acclaim in 1966 for the Miura sports coupé, which established mid-engine design as the standard layout for high-performance cars of the era. After a decade of rapid growth, hard times befell the company in the mid-1970s, as sales plunged in the wake of the 1973 world financial downturn and oil crisis. After going through bankruptcy and three changes in ownership, Lamborghini came under the corporate umbrella of the Chrysler Corporation in 1987. The American company failed to return the automaker to profitability and sold it to Indonesian interests in 1994. Lamborghini's lack of success continued through the 1990s, until the company was sold in 1998 to Audi, a subsidiary of the Volkswagen Group, a German automotive concern. Audi's ownership marked the beginning of a period of stability and increased productivity for Lamborghini, with sales increasing nearly tenfold over the course of the 2000s, peaking in record sales in 2007 and 2008. The world financial crisis in the late 2000s negatively affected luxury car makers worldwide, and saw Lamborghini's sales drop back to pre-2006 levels.

Assembly of Lamborghini cars continues to take place at the automaker's ancestral home in Sant'Agata Bolognese, where engine and automobile production lines run side-by-side at the company's single factory. Fewer than 3,000 cars roll off the production line each year. The flagship V12-powered Murciélago coupé and roadster were discontinued at the end of 2010. Its successor, the Lamborghini Aventador, was released on 28 February 2011.

History

Origin

A green and red tractor parked in a gravel patch with trees and hills in the background

A Lamborghini 22PS from 1951.

Automobili Lamborghini was founded by Ferruccio Lamborghini, the child of viticulturists from the comune (township) of Renazzo di Cento, Province of Ferrara, in the Emilia-Romagna region of Northern Italy.[1][4] After serving as a mechanic in the Regia Aeronautica,[5][6] during World War II, Lamborghini went into business building tractors out of leftover military hardware from the war effort. By the mid-1950s, Lamborghini's tractor company, Lamborghini Trattori S.p.A.,[7] had become one of the largest agricultural equipment manufacturers in the country.[8] He was also the owner of a successful gas heater and air conditioning manufacturer.[5][8][9]

Lamborghini's wealth allowed him to cultivate a childhood interest in cars, owning a number of luxury automobiles including Alfa Romeos, Lancias, Maseratis, and a Mercedes Benz.[9] He purchased his first Ferrari, a 250GT, in 1958, and went on to own several more. Lamborghini was fond of the Ferraris, but considered them too noisy and rough to be proper road cars, likening them to repurposed track cars.[9] Lamborghini decided to pursue an automobile manufacturing venture, with the goal of bringing to life his vision of a perfect grand tourer.[8][9][10][11]

Early 1960s

Prior to founding his company, Lamborghini had commissioned the engineering firm Società Autostar to design a V12 engine for use in his new cars. Lamborghini wanted the engine to have a similar displacement to Ferrari's 3-litre V12; however, he wanted the engine to be designed purely for road use, in contrast to the modified racing engines used by Ferrari in its road cars. Autostar was led by Giotto Bizzarrini, a member of the "Gang of Five" of Ferrari engineers, who had been responsible for creating the famous Ferrari 250 GTO, but left the company in 1961 after founder Enzo Ferrari announced his intention to reorganize the engineering staff.[12] The engine Bizzarrini designed for Lamborghini had a displacement of 3.5 litres, a 9.5:1 compression ratio, and a maximum output of 360 bhp at 9800 rpm.[13] Lamborghini was displeased with the engine's high revolutions and dry-sump lubrication system, both characteristic of the racing engines he specifically did not wish to use; when Bizzarrini refused to change the engine's design to make it more "well-mannered", Lamborghini refused to pay the agreed-upon fee of 4.5 million Italian lire (plus a bonus for every unit of brake horsepower the engine could produce over the equivalent Ferrari engine).[13][14] Lamborghini did not fully compensate the designer until ordered to do so by the courts.[14]

The first Lamborghini chassis design was created by Italian chassis engineer Gian Paolo Dallara of Ferrari and Maserati fame, together with a team that included Paolo Stanzani (then a recent college graduate) and Bob Wallace (a New Zealander who was known at Maserati for his keen sense of chassis handling and excellent feedback and developmental skills).[14][15] The body was styled by the then-relatively unknown designer Franco Scaglione, who was selected by Ferruccio Lamborghini after passing over highly regarded names including Vignale, Ghia, Bertone, and Pininfarina.[citation needed]

Lamborghini was unimpressed with the quality of the 350GTV, and ordered a complete redesign for the firm's first production car.

The Lamborghini 350GTV was designed and built in only four months, in time for an October unveiling at the 1963 Turin Motor Show.[13] Due to the ongoing disagreement with engine designer Giotto Bizzarrini, a working powerplant was not available for the prototype car in time for the show. The car went on display in Turin without an engine under its hood; according to lore, Ferruccio Lamborghini had the engine bay filled with bricks so that the car would sit at an appropriate height above the ground, and made sure that the bonnet stayed closed to hide the missing engine.[14][16] The motoring press gave the 350GTV a warm response.[13]

The Automobili Lamborghini Società per Azioni was officially incorporated on 30 October 1963.[5] Ferruccio Lamborghini purchased a 46,000 square metres (500,000 sq ft) property at Via Modena, 12, in the township of Sant'Agata Bolognese, less than 30 kilometres (19 mi) from Cento; deep in the cradle of Italy's automobile industry, the location provided easy access to skilled labour and facilities.[17] The township was chosen as the location for the factory due to a favorable financial agreement with the city's communist leadership, who promised Lamborghini a 19% interest rate on the company's profits when deposited in the bank, in addition to charging zero tax on the profits. As part of the agreement, the factory would be required to unionize its workers.[17]

The 350GTV was reworked into the production 350GT; the company sold 120 of them.

Despite the favorable press reviews of the 350GTV, Ferruccio Lamborghini decided to rework the car for production. The production model, which would be called the 350GT, was restyled by Carrozzeria Touring of Milan, and a new chassis was constructed in-house. Bizzarrini's V12 engine would be detuned for mass production, developing only 280 hp rather than the designer's intended 360 bhp.[18] The completed design debuted at the 1964 Geneva Motor Show, once again garnering positive reviews from the press. Production began shortly afterwards, and by the end of the year, cars had been built for 13 customers; Lamborghini sold each car at a loss in order to keep prices competitive with Ferrari's. The 350GT remained in production for a further two years, with a total of 120 cars sold.[19]

1965–1966

The 400GT (foreground) featured an uprated 3.9 litre engine. The Miura (background) became Lamborghini's first high-performance two-seater.

In 1965, Gian Paolo Dallara made improvements to the Bizzarrini V12, increasing its displacement to 3.9 litres, and its power output to 320 bhp at 6,500 rpm.[19] The engine was first installed in the 400GT, essentially a 350GT with the larger engine. At the 1966 Geneva Auto Show, Lamborghini debuted the 400GT 2+2, a stretched revision of the 350GT/400GT that featured 2+2 seating and other minor updates. The 400GT 2+2, like its predecessors, was well-received by the motoring press.[20] The revenue from sales of the 2+2 allowed Lamborghini to increase the labour force at his factory to 170 employees, and expand services offered to Lamborghini customers.[19]

During 1965, Dallara, Stanzani, and Wallace invested their personal time into the development of a prototype car that they envisioned as a road car with racing pedigree, capable of winning on the track as well as being driven on the road by enthusiasts.[15] They hoped to eventually sway Ferruccio Lamborghini away from the opinion that such a car would be too expensive and distract from the company's focus. When finally brought aboard, Lamborghini allowed his engineers to go ahead, deciding that the car, known as the P400, would be useful as a potential marketing tool, if nothing more.

The car's rolling chassis, featuring an unusual-for-Lamborghini transversely mounted mid-engine layout, was displayed at the Turin Salon in 1965, impressing showgoers. A version with bodywork styled by Bertone was finished only days before its debut at the 1966 Geneva motor show. As had happened three years earlier at the debut of the 350GTV, an ill-fitting engine meant the prototype's engine bay was filled with ballast, and the hood kept locked.[21] The favorable reaction to the P400 at Geneva led Lamborghini to slate the car for production by 1967, under the name Miura. The Miura's layout and styling would become the standard for mid-engine two-seat high-performance sports cars,[22] a trend that continues today.

Lamborghini now had an offering that positioned the fledgling automaker as a leader in the world of supercars, while the 400GT was the sophisticated road car that Ferruccio Lamborghini had long desired to build. By end of 1966, the workforce at the Sant'Agata factory had expanded to 300, and enough deposits were made by prospective buyers to begin final development on the Miura in 1967. The first four cars produced were kept at the factory, where Bob Wallace continued to improve and refine the car. By December, 108 cars had been delivered.[23]

1967–1968

Debuting in 1967, the groundbreaking Miura (foreground) became Lamborghini's first high-performance two-seater

Production of the 400GT continued, with Ferruccio Lamborghini seeking to replace the four-year-old design. Lamborghini commissioned Touring, which had styled the 350GT and original 400GT, to design a possible replacement based on the same chassis. Touring's 400 GT Flying Star II did not win Lamborghini's approval. Giorgio Neri and Luciano Bonacini, of Neri and Bonacini coachbuilders in Modena produced their own design, the 400GT Monza, which was rejected as well.[24] Facing mounting financial difficulties, Touring would close its doors later that year.

The Islero was a sales disappointment, but faithful to Ferruccio's ideal of a reliable grand tourer.

Ferruccio Lamborghini turned to Bertone designer Mario Marazzi, who had formerly worked at Touring. Together with Lamborghini's engineers, he created a four-seater named the Marzal. The car rode on a stretched Miura chassis, and was powered by an in-line six-cylinder that was made from one-half of Lamborghini's V12 design.[25] Despite an innovative design that featured gullwing doors and enormous glass windows, Lamborghini rejected the design. Eventually, a toned-down version became the Islero 400GT. While the car was not the full four-seater that he desired, Ferruccio Lamborghini thought the car represented a well-developed gran turismo product.[26] It failed to attract buyers, with only 125 cars produced between 1968 and 1969.[27]

New versions of the Miura arrived in 1968; the Miura P400 S (more commonly known as the Miura S) featured a stiffened chassis and more power, with the V12 developing 370 bhp at 7000 rpm. At the 1968 Brussels auto show, the automaker unveiled the Miura P400 Roadster (more commonly the Miura Spider), an open-top version of the coupé. Gandini, by now effectively the head of design at Bertone, had paid great attention to the details, particularly the problems of wind buffeting and noise insulation inherent to a roadster.[28] For all of Gandini's hard work, Sgarzi was forced to turn potential buyers away, as Lamborghini and Bertone were unable to reach a consensus on the size of a theoretical roadster production run. The Miura Spider was sold off to an American metal alloy supplier, who wanted to use it as a marketing device. 1968 was a positive time for all of Ferruccio's businesses, and Automobili delivered 353 cars over the course of the year.[28]

External videos
1968 video of the Sant'Agata factory, followed by 1969 footage of a drive in an Islero

In August 1968, Gian Paolo Dallara, frustrated with Ferruccio Lamborghini's refusal to participate in motorsport, was recruited away from Sant'Agata to head the Formula One programme at rival automaker De Tomaso in Modena. With profits on the rise, a racing programme would have been a possibility, but Lamborghini remained against even the construction of prototypes, stating his mission as: "I wish to build GT cars without defects – quite normal, conventional but perfect – not a technical bomb."[29] With cars like the Islero and the Espada, his aim to establish himself and his cars as equal or superior to the works of Enzo Ferrari had been satisfied. Dallara's assistant, Paulo Stanzani, would assume his old boss' role as technical director. Unfortunately for Dallara, the De Tomaso F1 programme was underfunded, and the automaker barely survived the experience; the engineer left the company soon after.[30]

1969–1970

The Espada was Lamborghini's first truly popular model, with more than 1,200 sold during its ten years of production.

Bertone was able to persuade Lamborghini to allow them to design a brand-new four-seater. The shape was penned by Marcello Gandini, and a bodyshell delivered to Ferruccio for inspection. The businessman was less than pleased with the enormous gullwing doors that Gandini had included, and insisted that the car would have to feature conventional doors.[25] The car that resulted from the collaboration was debuted at the 1969 Geneva show with the name Espada, powered by a 3.9-litre, front-mounted evolution of the factory's V12, producing 325 bhp. The Espada was a runaway success, with a total production run of 1,217 cars over ten years of production.[26]

In 1969, Automobili Lamborghini encountered problems with its fully unionized work force, among which the machinists and fabricators had begun to take one-hour token stoppages as part of a national campaign due to strained relations between the metal workers' union and Italian industry.[30] Ferruccio Lamborghini, who often rolled up his sleeves and joined in the work on the factory floor, was able to motivate his staff to continue working towards their common goal despite the disruptions.

The Jarama was a shortened, sportier version of the Espada.

Throughout that year, Lamborghini's product range, then consisting of the Islero, the Espada, and the Miura S, received upgrades across the board, with the Miura receiving a power boost, the Islero being upgraded to "S" trim, and the Espada gaining comfort and performance upgrades which allowed it to reach speeds of up to 160 mph (260 km/h). The Islero was slated to be replaced by a shortened yet higher-performing version of the Espada, the Jarama 400GT. The 3.9-litre V12 was retained, its compression ratio increasing to 10.5:1.[31]

The Urraco was the first clean-sheet Lamborghini design since the 350GTV.

By the time the Jarama was unveiled at the 1970 Geneva show, Paulo Stanzani was at work on a new clean-sheet design, which would use no parts from previous Lamborghini cars. Changes in tax laws and a desire to make full use of the factory's manufacturing capacity meant that the Italian automaker would follow the direction taken by Ferrari, with its Dino 246 and Porsche, with its 911, and produce a smaller, V8-powered 2+2 car, the Urraco. The 2+2 body style was selected as a concession to practicality, with Ferruccio acknowledging that Urraco owners might have children.[31] The single overhead cam V8 designed by Stanzani produced 220 bhp at 5000 rpm. Bob Wallace immediately began road testing and development; the car was to be presented at the 1970 Turin motor show.supsupsupsup

Mahabharata

Posted in Uncategorized on October 27, 2011 by Patel smital
 Mahabharata (disambiguation).

Manuscript illustration of the Battle of Kurukshetra

Krishna, Arjuna at Kurukshetra, 18–19th century painting.

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The Mahabharata (Sanskrit Mahābhārata महाभारत, IPA: [məɦaːˈbʱaːrət̪ə]) is one of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient India, the other being the Ramayana. The epic is part of itihasa.[1]

Besides its epic narrative of the Kurukshetra War and the fates of the Kauravas and the Pandavas, the Mahabharata contains much philosophical and devotional material, such as a discussion of the four "goals of life" or purusharthas (12.161). The latter are enumerated as dharma (right action), artha (purpose), kama (pleasure), and moksha (liberation). Among the principal works and stories that are a part of the Mahabharata are the Bhagavad Gita, the story of Damayanti, an abbreviated version of the Ramayana, and the Rishyasringa, often considered as works in their own right.

Traditionally, the authorship of the Mahabharata is attributed to Vyasa. There have been many attempts to unravel its historical growth and compositional layers. The oldest preserved parts of the text are not thought to be appreciably older than around 400 BCE, though the origins of the story probably fall between the 8th and 9th centuries BCE.[2] The text probably reached its final form by the early Gupta period (ca. 4th c. CE).[3] The title may be translated as "the great tale of the Bhārata dynasty". According to the Mahabharata itself, the tale is extended from a shorter version of 24,000 verses called simply Bhārata.[4]

With about one hundred thousand verses, long prose passages, or about 1.8 million words in total, the Mahabharata is roughly ten times the length of the Iliad and Odyssey combined, or about four times the length of the Ramayana.[5][6] W. J. Johnson has compared the importance of the Mahabharata to world civilization to that of the Bible, the works of Shakespeare, the works of Homer, Greek drama, and the Qur'an.[7]

Contents

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Textual history and structure

Depiction at Angkor Wat of Vyasa narrating the Mahabharata to Ganesha, his scribe.

The epic is traditionally ascribed to Vyasa, who is also a major character in the epic. The first section of the Mahabharata states that it was Ganesha who, at the request of Vyasa, wrote down the text to Vyasa's dictation. Ganesha is said to have agreed to write it only on condition that Vyasa never pause in his recitation. Vyasa agreed, provided Ganesha took the time to understand what was said before writing it down.

The epic employs the story within a story structure, otherwise known as frametales, popular in many Indian religious and secular works. It is recited to the King Janamejaya who is the great-grandson of Arjuna, by Vaisampayana, a disciple of Vyasa. The recitation of Vaisampayana to Janamejaya is then recited again by a professional storyteller named Ugrasrava Sauti, many years later, to an assemblage of sages performing the 12 year long sacrifice for King Saunaka Kulapati in the Naimisha forest.

Jaya, the core of Mahābhārata is structured in the form of a dialogue between Kuru king Dhritarashtra and Sanjaya, his advisor and chariot driver. Sanjaya narrates each incident of the Kurukshetra War, fought in 18 days, as and when it happened. Dhritarāshtra sometimes asks questions and doubts and sometimes laments, knowing about the destruction caused by the war, to his sons, friends and kinsmen. He also feels guilty, due to his own role, that led to this war, destructive to the entire Indian subcontinent.

In the beginning, Sanjaya gives a description of the various continents of the Earth, the other planets, and focuses on the Indian Subcontinent and gives an elaborate list of hundreds of kingdoms, tribes, provinces, cities, towns, villages, rivers, mountains, forests, etc. of the (ancient) Indian Subcontinent (Bhārata Varsha). He also explains about the military formations adopted by each side on each day, the death of each hero and the details of each war-racings. Some 18 chapters of Vyasa's Jaya constitutes the Bhagavad Gita, the sacred text of the Hindus. Thus, this work of Vyasa, called Jaya deals with diverse subjects like geography, history, warfare, religion and morality. According to Mahabharata itself, Vaisampayana's Bharata expanded on the story, with Vyasa's Jaya embedded within it. Ugrasrava eventually composed the final Mahabharata, with both Vyasa's Jaya and Vaisampayana's Bharata embedded within the epic.

Accretion and redaction

Research on the Mahabharata has put an enormous effort into recognizing and dating various layers within the text. Some elements of the present Mahabharata can be traced back to Vedic times.[8] The background to the Mahabharata suggests the origin of the epic occurs at a time "after the very early Vedic period" and before "the first Indian 'empire' was to rise in the third century B.C.". That this is "a date not too far removed from the eighth or ninth century B.C."[2][9] is likely. It is generally agreed that "Unlike the Vedas, which have to be preserved letter-perfect, the epic was a popular work whose reciters would inevitably conform to changes in language and style,"[9] so the earliest surviving components of this dynamic text are believed to be no older than the earliest external references we have to the epic, which may include an allusion in Panini's fourth century BCE grammar (Ashtādhyāyī 4:2:56).[2][9] It is estimated that the Sanskrit text probably reached something of a "final form" by the early Gupta period (about the 4th century CE).[9] Vishnu Sukthankar, editor of the first great critical edition of the Mahabharata, commented: "It is useless to think of reconstructing a fluid text in a literally original shape, on the basis of an archetype and a stemma codicum. What then is possible? Our objective can only be to reconstruct the oldest form of the text which it is possible to reach on the basis of the manuscript material available."[10] That manuscript evidence is somewhat late, given its material composition and the climate of India, but it is very extensive.

The Mahabharata itself (1.1.61) distinguishes a core portion of 24,000 verses, the Bharata proper, as opposed to additional secondary material, while the Ashvalayana Grhyasutra (3.4.4) makes a similar distinction. At least three redactions of the text are commonly recognized: Jaya (Victory) with 8,800 verses attributed to Vyasa, Bharata with 24,000 verses as recited by Vaisampayana, and finally the Mahabharata as recited by Ugrasrava Sauti with over 100,000 verses.[11][12] However, some scholars such as John Brockington, argue that Jaya and Bharata refer to the same text, and ascribe the theory of Jaya with 8,800 verses to a misreading of a verse in Adiparvan (1.1.81).[13] The redaction of this large body of text was carried out after formal principles, emphasizing the numbers 18[14] and 12. The addition of the latest parts may be dated by the absence of the Anushasana-parva and the Virata parva from the "Spitzer manuscript".[15] The oldest surviving Sanskrit text would date to the Kushan Period (200 CE).[16]

From this evidence, it is likely that the redaction into 18 books took place in the first century. An alternative division into 20 parvas appears to have co-existed for some time. The division into 100 sub-parvas (mentioned in Mbh. 1.2.70) is older, and most parvas are named after one of their constituent sub-parvas. The Harivamsa consists of the final two of the 100 sub-parvas, and was considered an appendix (khila) to the Mahabharata proper by the redactors of the 18 parvas.[citation needed]

According to what one character says at Mbh. 1.1.50, there were three versions of the epic, beginning with Manu (1.1.27), Astika (1.3, sub-parva 5) or Vasu (1.57), respectively. These versions would correspond to the addition of one and then another 'frame' settings of dialogues. The Vasu version would omit the frame settings and begin with the account of the birth of Vyasa. The astika version would add the sarpasattra and ashvamedha material from Brahmanical literature, introduce the name Mahabharata, and identify Vyasa as the work's author. The redactors of these additions were probably Pancharatrin scholars who according to Oberlies (1998) likely retained control over the text until its final redaction. Mention of the Huna in the Bhishma-parva however appears to imply that this parva may have been edited around the 4th century[citation needed].

The snake sacrifice of Janamejaya

The Adi-parva includes the snake sacrifice (sarpasattra) of Janamejaya, explaining its motivation, detailing why all snakes in existence were intended to be destroyed, and why in spite of this, there are still snakes in existence. This sarpasattra material was often considered an independent tale added to a version of the Mahabharata by "thematic attraction" (Minkowski 1991), and considered to have a particularly close connection to Vedic (Brahmana) literature. The Panchavimsha Brahmana (at 25.15.3) enumerates the officiant priests of a sarpasattra among whom the names Dhrtarashtra and Janamejaya, two main characters of the Mahabharata's sarpasattra, as well as Takshaka, the name of a snake in the Mahabharata, occur.[17]

The state of the text has been described by some early 20th century Indologists as unstructured and chaotic. Hermann Oldenberg supposed that the original poem must once have carried an immense "tragic force", but dismissed the full text as a "horrible chaos."[18] The judgement of other early 20th century Indologists was even less favourable. Moritz Winternitz (Geschichte der indischen Literatur 1909) considered that "only unpoetical theologists and clumsy scribes" could have lumped the various parts of disparate origin into an unordered whole.

Historical references

The earliest known references to the Mahabharata and its core Bharata date back to the Ashtadhyayi (sutra 6.2.38) of Pāṇini (fl. 4th century BCE), and in the Ashvalayana Grhyasutra (3.4.4). This may suggest that the core 24,000 verses, known as the Bharata, as well as an early version of the extended Mahabharata, were composed by the 4th century BCE.

A report by the Greek writer Dio Chrysostom (ca. 40-ca. 120 CE) about Homer's poetry being sung even in India[19] seems to imply that the Iliad had been translated into Sanskrit. However, scholars have, in general, taken this as evidence for the existence of a Mahabharata at this date, whose episodes Dio or his sources syncretistically identify with the story of the Iliad.[20]

Several stories within the Mahabharata took on separate identities of their own in Classical Sanskrit literature. For instance, Abhijñānashākuntala by the renowned Sanskrit poet Kālidāsa (ca. 400 CE), believed to have lived in the era of the Gupta dynasty, is based on a story that is the precursor to the Mahabharata. Urubhanga, a Sanskrit play written by Bhāsa who is believed to have lived before Kālidāsa, is based on the slaying of Duryodhana by the splitting of his thighs by Bhima.

The copper-plate inscription of the Maharaja Sharvanatha (533–534 CE) from Khoh (Satna District, Madhya Pradesh) describes the Mahabharata as a "collection of 100,000 verses" (shatasahasri samhita).

The 18 parvas

The division into 18 parvas is as follows:

Parva title sub-parvas contents
1 Adi Parva (The Book of the Beginning) 1–19 How the Mahabharata came to be narrated by Sauti to the assembled rishis at Naimisharanya. The recital of the Mahabharata at the sarpasattra of Janamejaya by Vaishampayana at Takṣaśilā. The history of the Bharata race is told in detail and the parva also traces history of the Bhrigu race. The birth and early life of the Kuru princes. (adi means first)
2 Sabha Parva (The Book of the Assembly Hall) 20–28 Maya Danava erects the palace and court (sabha), at Indraprastha. Life at the court, Yudhishthira's Rajasuya Yajna, the game of dice, and the eventual exile of the Pandavas.
3 Vana Parva also Aranyaka-parva, Aranya-parva (The Book of the Forest) 29–44 The twelve years of exile in the forest (aranya).
4 Virata Parva (The Book of Virata) 45–48 The year in incognito spent at the court of Virata.
5 Udyoga Parva (The Book of the Effort) 49–59 Preparations for war and efforts to bring about peace between the Kurus and the Pandavas which eventually fail (udyoga means effort or work).
6 Bhishma Parva (The Book of Bhishma) 60–64 The first part of the great battle, with Bhishma as commander for the Kauravas and his fall on the bed of arrows.
7 Drona Parva (The Book of Drona) 65–72 The battle continues, with Drona as commander. This is the major book of the war. Most of the great warriors on both sides are dead by the end of this book.
8 Karna Parva (The Book of Karna) 73 The battle again, with Karna as commander.
9 Shalya Parva (The Book of Shalya) 74–77 The last day of the battle, with Shalya as commander. Also told in detail is the pilgrimage of Balarama to the fords of the river Saraswati and the mace fight between Bhima and Duryodhana which ends the war, since Bhima kills Duryodhana by smashing him on the thighs with a mace.
10 Sauptika Parva (The Book of the Sleeping Warriors) 78–80 Ashvattama, Kripa and Kritavarma kill the remaining Pandava army in their sleep. Only 7 warriors remain on the Pandava side and 3 on the Kaurava side.
11 Stri Parva (The Book of the Women) 81–85 Gandhari, Kunti and the women (stri) of the Kurus and Pandavas lament the dead.
12 Shanti Parva (The Book of Peace) 86–88 The crowning of Yudhisthira as king of Hastinapura, and instructions from Bhishma for the newly anointed king on society, economics and politics. This is the longest book of the Mahabharata (shanti means peace).
13 Anushasana Parva (The Book of the Instructions) 89–90 The final instructions (anushasana) from Bhishma.
14 Ashvamedhika Parva (The Book of the Horse Sacrifice)[21] 91–92 The royal ceremony of the Ashvamedha (Horse sacrifice) conducted by Yudhisthira. The world conquest by Arjuna. The Anugita is told by Krishna to Arjuna.
15 Ashramavasika Parva (The Book of the Hermitage) 93–95 The eventual deaths of Dhritarashtra, Gandhari and Kunti in a forest fire when they are living in a hermitage in the Himalayas. Vidura predeceases them and Sanjaya on Dhritarashtra's bidding goes to live in the higher Himalayas.
16 Mausala Parva (The Book of the Clubs) 96 The infighting between the Yadavas with maces (mausala) and the eventual destruction of the Yadavas.
17 Mahaprasthanika Parva (The Book of the Great Journey) 97 The great journey of Yudhisthira and his brothers across the whole country and finally their ascent of the great Himalayas where each Pandava falls except for Yudhisthira.
18 Svargarohana Parva (The Book of the Ascent to Heaven) 98 Yudhisthira's final test and the return of the Pandavas to the spiritual world (svarga).
khila Harivamsa Parva (The Book of the Genealogy of Hari) 99–100 Life of Krishna which is not covered in the 18 parvas of the Mahabharata.

Historical context

The historicity of the Kurukshetra War is unclear. Many historians estimate the date of the Kurukshetra war to Iron Age India of the 10th century BCE.[22] The setting of the epic has a historical precedent in Iron Age (Vedic) India, where the Kuru kingdom was the center of political power during roughly 1200 to 800 BCE.[23] A dynastic conflict of the period could have been the inspiration for the Jaya, the foundation on which the Mahabharata corpus was built, with a climactic battle eventually coming to be viewed as an epochal event.

Puranic literature presents genealogical lists associated with the Mahabharata narrative. The evidence of the Puranas is of two kinds. Of the first kind, there is the direct statement that there were 1015 (or 1050) years between the birth of Parikshit (Arjuna's grandson) and the accession of Mahapadma Nanda, commonly dated to 382 BCE, which would yield an estimate of about 1400 BCE for the Bharata battle.[24] However, this would imply improbably long reigns on average for the kings listed in the genealogies.[25] Of the second kind are analyses of parallel genealogies in the Puranas between the times of Adhisimakrishna (Parikshit's great-grandson) and Mahapadma Nanda. Pargiter accordingly estimated 26 generations by averaging 10 different dynastic lists and, assuming 18 years for the average duration of a reign, arrived at an estimate of 850 BCE for Adhisimakrishna, and thus approximately 950 BCE for the Bharata battle.[26]

B. B. Lal used the same approach with a more conservative assumption of the average reign to estimate a date of 836 BCE, and correlated this with archaeological evidence from Painted Grey Ware sites, the association being strong between PGW artifacts and places mentioned in the epic.[27]

Attempts to date the events using methods of archaeoastronomy have produced, depending on which passages are chosen and how they are interpreted, estimates ranging from the late 4th to the mid 2nd millennium BCE.[28] The late 4th millennium date has a precedent in the calculation of the Kaliyuga epoch, based on planetary conjunctions, by Aryabhata (6th century). His date of February 18 3102 BCE has become widespread in Indian tradition (for example, the Aihole inscription of Pulikeshi II, dated to Saka 556 = 634 CE, claims that 3735 years have elapsed since the Bharata battle.[29]) Another traditional school of astronomers and historians, represented by aaaa

Ramayana

Posted in Uncategorized on October 27, 2011 by Patel smital

Rama (right) seated on the shoulders of Hanuman, battles the demon-king Ravana.

Ramayana Scene, Gupta Art, Indian National Museum, New Delhi.

The Ramayana (Sanskritरामायण, RāmāyaṇaIPA: [rɑːˈmɑːjəɳə] ?) is an ancient Sanskrit epic. It is ascribed to the Hindu sage Valmiki and forms an important part of the Hindu canon (smṛti), considered to be itihāsa.[1] The Ramayana is one of the two great epics of India, the other being the Mahabharata.[2] It depicts the duties of relationships, portraying ideal characters like the ideal father, ideal servant, the ideal brother, the ideal wife and the ideal king.

The name Ramayana is a tatpurusha compound of Rāma and ayana ("going, advancing"), translating to "Rama's Journey". The Ramayana consists of 24,000 verses in seven books (kāṇḍas) and 500 cantos (sargas),[3] and tells the story of Rama (an Avatar of the Hindu preserver-God Vishnu), whose wife Sita is abducted by the demon king of Lanka, Ravana. Thematically, the Ramayana explores human values and the concept of dharma.[4]

Verses in the Ramayana are written in a 32-syllable meter called anustubh. The Ramayana was an important influence on later Sanskrit poetry and Indian life and culture. Like the Mahābhārata, the Ramayana is not just a story: it presents the teachings of ancient Hindu sages in narrative allegory, interspersing philosophical and devotional elements. The characters Rama, Sita, Lakshmana, Bharata, Hanuman and Ravana are all fundamental to the cultural consciousness of India.

There are other versions of the Ramayana, notably Kambaramayana in Tamil, the Buddhist (Dasaratha Jataka No. 461) and Jain in India, and also Indonesian, Philippine, Thai, Lao, Burmese and Malay versions of the tale.

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Textuality

Traditionally, the Ramayana is ascribed to Valmiki, regarded as India's first poet.[5] The Indian tradition is unanimous in its agreement that the poem is the work of a single poet, the sage Valmiki, a contemporary of Rama and a peripheral actor in the drama.[6] The story's original version in Sanskrit is known as Valmiki Ramayana, dating to approximately the 5th to 4th century B.C.[7][8] While it is often viewed as a primarily devotional text, the Vaishnava elements appear to be later accretions possibly dating to the 2nd century BC or later.[8] The main body of the narrative lacks statements of Rama's divinity, and identifications of Rama with Vishnu are rare and subdued even in the later parts of the text.[9]

According to Indian tradition, and according to the Ramayana itself, the Ramayana belongs to the genre of itihāsa, like the Mahabharata. The definition of itihāsa has varied over time, with one definition being that itihāsa is a narrative of past events (purāvṛtta) which includes teachings on the goals of human life.[1] According to Hindu tradition, the Ramayana takes place during a period of time known as Treta Yuga.[10]

In its extant form, Valmiki's Ramayana is an epic poem of some 50,000 lines. The text survives in several thousand partial and complete manuscripts, the oldest of which appears to date from the 11th century A.D.[11] The text has several regional renderings,[12] recensions and subrecensions. Textual scholar Robert P. Goldman differentiates two major regional recensions: the northern (N) and the southern (S).[11] Scholar Romesh Chunder Dutt writes that "the Ramayana, like the Mahabharata, is a growth of centuries, but the main story is more distinctly the creation of one mind."[13]

There has been discussion as to whether the first and the last chapters of Valmiki's Ramayana were composed by the original author. Some still believe they are integral parts of the book in spite of some style differences and narrative contradictions between these two chapters and the rest of the book.[14][15]

Famous retellings include the Ramayanam of Kamban in Tamil (ca. 11th–12th century), the Kotha Ramayana of Madhava Kandali in Assamese (ca. 14th century), Shri Rama Panchali or Krittivasi Ramayan by Krittibas Ojha in Bengali (ca. 15th Century), and Ramacharitamanas by Tulasidas in Awadhi which is an eastern form of Hindi (c. 16th century).[12]

Period

Some cultural evidence (the presence of sati in the Mahabharata but not in the main body of the Ramayana) suggests that the Ramayana predates the Mahabharata.[16] However, the general cultural background of the Ramayana is one of the post-urbanization period of the eastern part of North India (c. 450 BCE), while the Mahabharata reflects the Kuru areas west of this, from the Rigvedic to the late Vedic period.[17]

By tradition, the text belongs to the Treta Yuga, second of the four eons (yuga) of Hindu chronology. Rama is said to have been born in the Treta Yuga to King Daśaratha in the Ikshvaku vamsa (clan).[18]

The names of the characters (Rama, Sita, Dasharatha, Janaka, Vasishta, Vishwamitra) are all known in late Vedic literature, older than the Valmiki Ramayana.[19] However, nowhere in the surviving Vedic poetry is there a story similar to the Ramayana of Valmiki.[20] According to the modern academic view, Vishnu, who according to Bala Kanda was incarnated as Rama, first came into prominence with the epics themselves and further during the 'Puranic' period of the later 1st millennium CE. There is also a version of Ramayana, known as Ramopakhyana, found in the epic Mahabharata. This version is depicted as a narration to Yudhishtira.[21]

There is general consensus that books two to six form the oldest portion of the epic while the first book Bala Kanda and the last the Uttara Kanda are later additions.[22] The author or authors of Bala Kanda and Ayodhya Kanda appear to be familiar with the eastern Gangetic basin region of northern India and the Kosala and Magadha region during the period of the sixteen janapadas as the geographical and geopolitical data is in keeping with what is known about the region. However, when the story moves to the Aranya Kanda and beyond, it seems to turn abruptly into fantasy with its demon-slaying hero and fantastic creatures. The geography of central and South India is increasingly vaguely described. The knowledge of the location of the island of Sri Lanka also lacks detail.[23] Basing his assumption on these features, the historian H.D. Sankalia has proposed a date of the 4th century BC for the composition of the text.[24] A. L. Basham, however, is of the opinion that Rama may have been a minor chief who lived in the 8th or the 7th century BC.[25]

Characters

Rama seated with Sita, fanned by Lakshmana, while Hanuman pays his respects.

  • Rama is the main protagonist of the tale. Portrayed as the seventh avatar of the God Vishnu, he is the eldest and favorite son of the King of Ayodhya, Dasharatha, and his wife Kausalya. He is portrayed as the epitome of virtue. Dasharatha is forced by Kaikeyi, one of his wives, to command Rama to relinquish his right to the throne for fourteen years and go into exile.
  • Sita is the beloved wife of Rama and the daughter of king Janaka. She is the avatar of Goddess Lakshmi, the consort of Vishnu. Sita is portrayed as the epitome of female purity and virtue. She follows her husband into exile and is abducted by Ravana. She is imprisoned on the island of Lanka until Rama rescues her by defeating the demon king Ravana. Later, she gives birth to Lava and Kusha, the heirs of Rama.
  • Hanuman is a vanara belonging to the kingdom of Kishkindha. He is portrayed as the eleventh avatar of God Shiva (He is also called Rudra) and an ideal bhakta of Rama. He is born as the son of Kesari, a vanara king, and the Goddess Anjana. He plays an important part in locating Sita and in the ensuing battle.
  • Lakshmana, the younger brother of Rama, who chose to go into exile with him. He is portrayed as an avatar of the Shesha, the nāga associated with the God Vishnu. He spends his time protecting Sita and Rama during which he fought the demoness Surpanakha. He is forced to leave Sita, who was deceived by the demon Maricha into believing that Rama was in trouble. Sita is abducted by Ravana upon him leaving her. He was married to Sita's younger sister Urmila.
  • Ravana, a rakshasa, is the king of Lanka. After performing severe penance for ten thousand years he received a boon from the creator-God Brahma: he could henceforth not be killed by Gods, demons, or spirits. He is portrayed as a powerful demon king who disturbs the penances of Rishis. Vishnu incarnates as the human Rama to defeat him, thus circumventing the boon given by Brahma.
  • Jatayu, the son of Aruṇa and nephew of Garuda. A demi-god who has the form of a vulture that tries to rescue Sita from Ravana. Jatayu fought valiantly with Ravana, but as Jatayu was very old Ravana soon got the better of him. As Rama and Lakshmana chanced upon the stricken and dying Jatayu in their search for Sita, he informs them the direction in which Ravana had gone.
  • Dasharatha is the king of Ayodhya and the father of Rama. He has three queens, Kausalya, Kaikeyi and Sumitra, and three other sons: Bharata, Lakshmana and Shatrughna. Kaikeyi, Dasharatha's favourite queen, forces him to make his son Bharata crown prince and send Rama into exile. Dasharatha dies heartbroken after Rama goes into exile.
  • Bharata is the son of Dasharatha. When he learns that his mother Kaikeyi had forced Rama into exile and caused Dasharatha to die brokenhearted, he storms out of the palace and goes in search of Rama in the forest. When Rama refuses to return from his exile to assume the throne, Bharata obtains Rama's sandals and places them on the throne as a gesture that Rama is the true king. Bharata then rules Ayodhya as the regent of Rama for the next fourteen years. He was married to Mandavi.
  • Satrughna is the son of Dasharatha and his third wife Queen Sumitra. He is the youngest brother of Rama and also the twin brother of Lakshmana. He was married to Shrutakirti.
  • Sugriva, a vanara king who helped Rama regain Sita from Ravana. He had an agreement with Rama through which Vaali-Sugriva’s brother and king of Kishkindha-would be killed by Rama in exchange for Sugriva’s help in finding Sita. Sugriva ultimately ascends the throne of Kishkindha after the slaying of Vaali and fulfils his promise by putting the Vanara forces at Rama’s disposal[26]
  • Indrajit, a son of Ravana who twice defeated Lakshmana in battle before succumbing to him the third time. An adept of the magical arts, he coupled his supreme fighting skills with various stratagems to inflict heavy losses on the Vanara army before his death.[26]
  • Kumbhakarna, a brother of Ravana, famous for his eating and sleeping. He would sleep for months at a time and would be extremely ravenous upon waking up, consuming anything set before him. His monstrous size and loyalty made him an important part of Ravana’s army. During the war, he decimated the Vanara army before Rama cut of his limbs and head.[26]
  • Surpanakha, Ravana's demoness sister who fell in love with Rama and had the ability to take any form she wanted.
  • Vibhishana, a younger brother of Ravana. He was against the kidnapping of Sita and joined the forces of Rama when Ravana refused to return her. His intricate knowledge of Lanka was vital in the war and he was crowned king after the fall of Ravana.[26]

Synopsis

The Epic is traditionally divided into several major kāṇḍas or books, that deal chronologically with the major events in the life of Rama—Bāla Kāṇḍa, Ayodhya Kāṇḍa, Araṇya Kāṇḍa, Kishkindha Kāṇḍa, Sundara Kāṇḍa, Yuddha Kāṇḍa, and Uttara Kāṇḍa.[12] The Bala Kanda describes the birth of Rama, his childhood and marriage to Sita.[27] The Ayodhya Kanda describes the preparations for Rama's coronation and his exile into the forest.[27] The third part, Aranya Kanda, describes the forest life of Rama and the kidnapping of Sita by the demon king Ravana.[27] The fourth book, Kishkindha Kanda, describes the meeting of Hanuman with Rama, the destruction of the vanara king Vali and the coronation of his younger brother Sugriva to the throne of the kingdom of Kishkindha.[27] The fifth book is Sundara Kanda, which narrates the heroism of Hanuman, his flight to Lanka and meeting with Sita.[27] The sixth book, Yuddha Kanda, describes the battle between Rama's and Ravana's armies.[27] The last book, Uttara Kanda, describes the birth of Lava and Kusha to Sita, their coronation to the throne of Ayodhya, and Rama's final departure from the world.[27]

 Bala Kanda

The birth of the four sons of Dasharatha

Dasharatha was the king of Kosala, the capital of which was the city of Ayodhya. He had three queens: Kausalya, Kaikeyi and Sumitra. He was childless for a long time and, anxious to produce an heir, he performs a fire sacrifice known as Putra-Kameshti Yagya.[28] As a consequence, Rama is first born to Kausalya, Bharata is born to Kaikeyi, and Sumitra gives birth to twins named Lakshmana and Shatrughna.[29]aaaa

Winston Churchill Biography

Posted in Uncategorized on October 27, 2011 by Patel smital

Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, PC, DL, FRS, Hon. RA (30 November 1874 – 24 January 1965) was a British politician and statesman known for his leadership of the United Kingdom during the Second World War. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest wartime leaders of the century and served as Prime Minister twice (1940–45 and 195155). A noted statesman and orator, Churchill was also an officer in the British Army, a historian, a writer, and an artist. He is the only British prime minister to have received the Nobel Prize in Literature, and was the first person to be made an Honorary Citizen of the United States.

Churchill was born into the aristocratic family of the Dukes of Marlborough. His father, Lord Randolph Churchill, was a charismatic politician who served as Chancellor of the Exchequer; his mother, Jenny Jerome, an American socialite. As a young army officer, he saw action in British India, the Sudan and the Second Boer War. He gained fame as a war correspondent and through books he wrote about his campaigns.

At the forefront of politics for fifty years, he held many political and cabinet positions. Before the First World War, he served as President of the Board of Trade, Home Secretary and First Lord of the Admiralty as part of the Asquith Liberal government. During the war, he continued as First Lord of the Admiralty until the disastrous Gallipoli Campaign, which he had sponsored, caused his departure from government. He then served briefly on the Western Front, commanding the 6th Battalion of the Royal Scots Fusiliers. He returned to government as Minister of Munitions, Secretary of State for War, and Secretary of State for Air. After the War, Churchill served as Chancellor of the Exchequer in the Conservative (Baldwin) government of 1924–29, controversially returning the pound sterling in 1925 to the gold standard at its pre-War parity, a move widely seen as creating deflationary pressure on the UK economy. Also controversial were Churchill's opposition to increased home rule for India, and his resistance to the 1936 abdication of Edward VIII.

Out of office and politically "in the wilderness" during the 1930s, Churchill took the lead in warning about the danger from Hitler and in campaigning for rearmament. On the outbreak of the Second World War, he was again appointed First Lord of the Admiralty. Following the resignation of Neville Chamberlain on 10 May 1940, Churchill became Prime Minister. His steadfast refusal to consider defeat, surrender or a compromise peace helped inspire British resistance, especially during the difficult early days of the War when Britain stood alone in its active opposition to Hitler. Churchill was particularly noted for his speeches and radio broadcasts, which helped inspire the British people. He led Britain as Prime Minister until victory had been secured over Nazi Germany.

After the Conservative Party lost the 1945 election, he became Leader of the Opposition. In 1951, he again became Prime Minister, before retiring in 1955. Upon his death, Elizabeth II granted him the honour of a state funeral, which saw one of the largest assemblies of world statesmen ever.[1] Named the Greatest Briton of all-time in a 2002 poll, Churchill is widely regarded as being among the most influential men in British history.

Contents

Family and early life

Churchill aged seven in 1881.

Born into the aristocratic Spencer family,[2] Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, like his father, used the surname Churchill in public life.[3] His ancestor George Spencer had changed his surname to Spencer-Churchill in 1817 when he became duke of Marlborough, to highlight his descent from John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough. Winston's father, Lord Randolph Churchill, the third son of John Spencer-Churchill, 7th Duke of Marlborough, was a politician; and his mother, Lady Randolph Churchill (née Jennie Jerome) was the daughter of American millionaire Leonard Jerome. Winston was born on 30 November 1874, two months prematurely, in a bedroom in Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire,[4]

From age two to six, he lived in Dublin where his Grandfather was appointed Viceroy and who had Churchill's father as his private secretary. Churchill had one brother, John Strange Spencer-Churchill who was born during this time in Ireland. It has been claimed that the young Winston first developed his fascination with militarism from watching the many military parades pass by the Vice Regal Lodge (now Áras an Uachtaráin, the official residence of the President of Ireland).[5][6]

Winston's earliest attempts at education occurred in Dublin. A governess tried teaching him reading, writing and arithmetic. His first reading book was called 'Reading Without Tears'. His Nanny 'Mrs' Everest was his confidante, nurse and mother and they spent many happy hours playing in the Phoenix Park. [7]

Blenheim Palace, the Churchill family home.

Independent and rebellious by nature, Churchill generally did poorly in school, for which he was punished. He was educated at three independent schools: St. George's School, Ascot, Berkshire, followed by Brunswick School in Hove, near Brighton (the school has since been renamed Stoke Brunswick School and relocated to Ashurst Wood in West Sussex) and then at Harrow School from 17 April 1888, where his military career began. Within weeks of his arrival, he had joined the Harrow Rifle Corps.[8] He earned high marks in English and History and was the school's fencing champion.

He was rarely visited by his mother (then known as Lady Randolph Churchill) and wrote letters begging her to either come to the school or to allow him to come home. His relationship with his father was a distant one; he once remarked that they barely spoke to each other.[9] Because of the lack of parental contact, he became very close to his nanny, Elizabeth Anne Everest, whom he used to call "Old Woom".[10] His father died on 24 January 1895, aged 45, leaving Churchill with the conviction that he too would die young and so should be quick about making his mark on the world.[11]

Speech impediment

Various authors in the 1920s–1940s mentioned Churchill's stutter and Churchill described himself as having a "speech impediment" which he consistently worked to overcome. His dentures were specially designed to aid his speech (Demosthenes' pebbles).[12] After many years, he could finally state, "My impediment is no hindrance".[13]

The Churchill Centre, however, flatly denies the claim that Churchill stuttered while confirming that he did have difficulty pronouncing the letter S and spoke with a lisp[14] as did his father.[15]

Marriage and children

A young Winston Churchill and fiancée Clementine Hozier shortly before their marriage in 1908.

Churchill met his future wife, Clementine Hozier, in 1904 at a ball in Crewe House, home of the Earl of Crewe and Crewe's wife Margaret Primrose (daughter of Archibald Primrose, 5th Earl of Rosebery).[16] In 1908, they met again at a dinner party hosted by Lady St Helier. Churchill found himself seated beside Clementine, and they soon began a lifelong romance.[17] He proposed to Clementine during a house party at Blenheim Palace on 10 August 1908, in a small Temple of Diana.[18]

On 12 September 1908, they were married in St. Margaret's, Westminster. The church was packed; the Bishop of St Asaph conducted the service.[19] The couple spent their honeymoon at Highgrove House in Eastcote.[20] In March 1909, the couple moved to a house at 33 Eccleston Square.

Their first child, Diana, was born in London on 11 July 1909. After the pregnancy, Clementine moved to Sussex to recover, while Diana stayed in London with her nanny.[21] On 28 May 1911, their second child, Randolph, was born at 33 Eccleston Square.[22]

Their third child, Sarah, was born on 7 October 1914 at Admiralty House. The birth was marked with anxiety for Clementine, as Winston had been sent to Antwerp by the Cabinet to "stiffen the resistance of the beleaguered city" after news that the Belgians intended to surrender the town.[23]

Clementine gave birth to her fourth child, Marigold Frances Churchill, on 15 November 1918, four days after the official end of the First World War.[24] In the early days of August 1921, the Churchills' children were entrusted to a French nursery governess in Kent named Mlle Rose. Clementine, meanwhile, travelled to Eaton Hall to play tennis with Hugh Grosvenor, 2nd Duke of Westminster and his family. While still under the care of Mlle Rose, Marigold had a cold, but was reported to have recovered from the illness. As the illness progressed with hardly any notice, it turned into septicaemia. Following advice from a landlady, Rose sent for Clementine. However the illness turned fatal on 23 August 1921, and Marigold was buried in the Kensal Green Cemetery three days later.[25]

On 15 September 1922, the Churchills' last child was born, Mary. Later that month, the Churchills bought Chartwell, which would be Winston's home until his death in 1965.[26][27]

Military service

Churchill in military uniform in 1895

After Churchill left Harrow in 1893, he applied to attend the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. It took three attempts before he passed the entrance exam; he applied for cavalry rather than infantry because the grade requirement was lower and did not require him to learn mathematics, which he disliked. He graduated eighth out of a class of 150 in December 1894,[28] and although he could now have transferred to an infantry regiment as his father had wished, chose to remain with the cavalry and was commissioned as a Cornet (Second Lieutenant) in the 4th Queen's Own Hussars on 20 February 1895.[8] In 1941, he received the honour of being appointed Colonel of the Hussars.

Churchill's pay as a second lieutenant in the 4th Hussars was £300. However, he believed that he needed at least a further £500 (equivalent to £25,000 in 2001 terms) to support a style of life equal to other officers of the regiment. His mother provided an allowance of £400 per year, but this was repeatedly overspent. According to biographer Roy Jenkins, this is one reason he took an interest in war correspondence.[29] He did not intend to follow a conventional career of promotion through army ranks, but to seek out all possible chances of military action and used his mother's and family influence in high society to arrange postings to active campaigns. His writings both brought him to the attention of the public, and earned him significant additional income. He acted as a war correspondent for several London newspapers[30] and wrote his own books about the campaigns.

Cuba

In 1895, Churchill travelled to Cuba to observe the Spanish fight the Cuban guerrillas; he had obtained a commission to write about the conflict from the Daily Graphic. To his delight, he came under fire for the first time on his twenty-first birthday.[8] He had fond memories of Cuba as a "…large, rich, beautiful island…"[31] While there, he soon acquired a taste for Havana cigars, which he would smoke for the rest of his life. While in New York, he stayed at the home of Bourke Cockran, an admirer of his mother. Bourke was an established American politician, and a member of the House of Representatives. He greatly influenced Churchill, both in his approach to oratory and politics, and encouraging a love of America.[32]

He soon received word that his nanny, Mrs Everest, was dying; he then returned to England and stayed with her for a week until she died. He wrote in his journal "She was my favourite friend." In My Early Life he wrote: "She had been my dearest and most intimate friend during the whole of the twenty years I had lived."[33]

India

In early October 1896, he was transferred to Bombay, British India. He was considered one of the best polo players in his regiment and led his team to many prestigious tournament victories.[34]

A young Winston Churchill on a lecture tour of the United States in 1900

In 1897, Churchill attempted to travel to both report and, if necessary, fight in the Greco-Turkish War, but this conflict effectively ended before he could arrive. Later, while preparing for a leave in England, he heard that three brigades of the British Army were going to fight against a Pashtun tribe in the North West Frontier of India and he asked his superior officer if he could join the fight.[35] He fought under the command of General Jeffery, who was the commander of the second brigade operating in Malakand, in the Frontier region of British India. Jeffery sent him with fifteen scouts to explore the Mamund Valley; while on reconnaissance, they encountered an enemy tribe, dismounted from their horses and opened fire. After an hour of shooting, their reinforcements, the 35th Sikhs arrived, and the fire gradually ceased and the brigade and the Sikhs marched on. Hundreds of tribesmen then ambushed them and opened fire, forcing them to retreat. As they were retreating four men were carrying an injured officer but the fierceness of the fight forced them to leave him behind. The man who was left behind was slashed to death before Churchill's eyes; afterwards he wrote of the killer, "I forgot everything else at this moment except a desire to kill this man."[36] However the Sikhs' numbers were being depleted so the next commanding officer told Churchill to get the rest of the men and boys to safety.

Before he left he asked for a note so he would not be charged with desertion.[37] He received the note, quickly signed, and headed up the hill and alerted the other brigade, whereupon they then engaged the army. The fighting in the region dragged on for another two weeks before the dead could be recovered. He wrote in his journal: "Whether it was worth it I cannot tell."[36][38] An account of the Siege of Malakand was published in December 1900 as The Story of the Malakand Field Force. He received £600 for his account. During the campaign, he also wrote articles for the newspapers The Pioneer and The Daily Telegraph.[39] His account of the battle was one of his first published stories, for which he received £5 per column from The Daily Telegraph.[40]

Sudan and Oldham

The River War was published in 1899

Churchill was transferred to Egypt in 1898. He visited Luxor before joining an attachment of the 21st Lancers serving in the Sudan under the command of General Herbert Kitchener. During this time he encountered two military officers with whom he would work during the First World War: Douglas Haig, then a captain and David Beatty, then a gunboat lieutenant.[41] While in the Sudan, he participated in what has been described as the last meaningful British cavalry charge, at the Battle of Omdurman in September 1898.[42] He also worked as a war correspondent for the Morning Post. By October 1898, he had returned to Britain and begun his two-volume work; Th

King Ashoka and the history of India

Posted in Uncategorized on October 27, 2011 by Patel smital

Ashok Maurya or Ashoka (Devanāgarī: अशोक, IAST: Aśoka, IPA: [aˈɕoːkə], ca. 304–232 BC), popularly known as Ashoka the Great, was an Indian emperor of the Maurya Dynasty who ruled almost all of the Indian subcontinent from ca. 269 BC to 232 BC.[1] One of India's greatest emperors, Ashoka reigned over most of present-day India after a number of military conquests. His empire stretched from present-day Pakistan and Afghanistan in the west, to the present-day Bangladesh and the Indian state of Assam in the east, and as far south as northern Kerala and Andhra Pradesh. He conquered the kingdom named Kalinga, which no one in his dynasty had conquered starting from Chandragupta Maurya. His reign was headquartered in Magadha (present-day Bihar, India). He embraced Buddhism from the prevalent Hindu tradition after witnessing the mass deaths of the war of Kalinga, which he himself had waged out of a desire for conquest. He was later dedicated to the propagation of Buddhism across Asia and established monuments marking several significant sites in the life of Gautama Buddha. Ashoka was a devotee of ahimsa (nonviolence), love, truth, tolerance and vegetarianism. Ashoka is remembered in history as a philanthropic administrator. In the history of India, Ashoka is referred to as Samraat Chakravartin Ashoka – the Emperor of Emperors Ashoka.

His name "aśoka" means "painless, without sorrow" in Sanskrit (the a privativum and śoka "pain, distress"). In his edicts, he is referred to as Devānāmpriya (Pali Devānaṃpiya or "The Beloved Of The Gods"), and Priyadarśin (Pali Piyadasī or "He who regards everyone with affection").

Along with the Edicts of Ashoka, his legend is related in the later 2nd century Aśokāvadāna ("Narrative of Asoka") and Divyāvadāna ("Divine narrative"), and in the Sri Lankan text Mahavamsa ("Great Chronicle").

Ashoka played a critical role in helping make Buddhism a world religion.[2] As the peace-loving ruler of one of the world's largest, richest and most powerful multi-ethnic states, he is considered an exemplary ruler, who tried to put into practice a secular state ethic of non-violence. The emblem of the modern Republic of India is an adaptation of the Lion Capital of Ashoka.

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Biography

Early life

Ashoka was born to the Mauryan emperor Bindusara and his queen, Dharmā [or Dhammā]. Ashokāvadāna states that his mother was a queen named Subhadrangī, the daughter of Champa of Telangana. Queen Subhadrangī was a Brahmin of the Ajivika sect. Sage Pilindavatsa (aias Janasana) was a kalupaga Brahmin[3] of the Ajivika sect had found Subhadrangī as a suitable match for Emperor Bindusara. A palace intrigue kept her away from the king. This eventually ended, and she bore a son. It is from her exclamation "I am now without sorrow", that Ashoka got his name. The Divyāvadāna tells a similar story, but gives the name of the queen as Janapadakalyānī.[4][5]

Ashoka had several elder siblings, all of whom were his half-brothers from other wives of Bindusāra.

He had been given the royal military training knowledge. He was a fearsome hunter, and according to a legend, he killed a lion with just a wooden rod. He was very adventurous and a trained fighter, who was known for his skills with the sword. Because of his reputation as a frightening warrior and a heartless general, he was sent to curb the riots in the Avanti province of the Mauryan empire.[6]

Rise to power

Maurya Empire at the age of Ashoka. The empire stretched from Afghanistan to Bangladesh/Assam and from Central Asia (Afghanistan) to Tamil Nadu/South India.

The Divyavandana refers to Ashoka putting down a revolt due to activities of wicked ministers. This may have been an incident in Bindusara's times. Taranatha's account states that Chanakya, one of Bindusara's great lords, destroyed the nobles and kings of 16 towns and made himself the master of all territory between the eastern and the western seas. Some historians consider this as an indication of Bindusara's conquest of the Deccan while others consider it as suppression of a revolt. Following this Ashoka was stationed at Ujjayini as governor.[5]

Bindusara's death in 273 BC led to a war over succession. According to Divyavandana, Bindusara wanted his son Sushim to succeed him but Ashoka was supported by his father's ministers. A minister named Radhagupta seems to have played an important role. One of the Ashokavandana states that Ashoka managed to become the king by getting rid of the legitimate heir to the throne, by tricking him into entering a pit filled with live coals. The Dipavansa and Mahavansa refer to Ashoka killing 99 of his brothers, sparing only one, named Tissa.[5] Although there is no clear proof about this incident. The coronation happened in 269 BC, four years after his succession to the throne.

Early life as Emperor

Ashoka is said to have been of a wicked nature and bad temper. He submitted his ministers to a test of loyalty and had 500 of them killed. He also kept a harem of around 500 women. Once when certain lot of these women insulted him, he had the whole lot of them burnt to death. He also built hell on earth, an elaborate and horrific torture chamber. This torture Chamber earned him the name of Chand Ashoka (Sanskrit), meaning Ashoka the Fierce.[5]

Ascending the throne, Ashoka expanded his empire over the next eight years, from the present-day boundaries and regions of Burma–Bangladesh and the state of Assam in India in the east to the territory of present-day Iran / Persia and Afghanistan in the west; from the Pamir Knots in the north almost to the peninsular of southern India (i.e. Tamilnadu / Andhra pradesh).[5]

Conquest of Kalinga

While the early part of Ashoka's reign was apparently quite bloodthirsty, he became a follower of the Buddha's teaching after his conquest of Kalinga on the east coast of India in the present-day states of southern Orissa and north coastal Andhra Pradesh. Kalinga was a state that prided itself on its sovereignty and democracy. With its monarchical parliamentary democracy it was quite an exception in ancient Bharata where there existed the concept of Rajdharma. Rajdharma means the duty of the rulers, which was intrinsically entwined with the concept of bravery and Kshatriya dharma. The Kalinga War happened eight years after his coronation. From his 13th inscription, we come to know that the battle was a massive one and caused the deaths of more than 100,000 soldiers and many civilians who rose up in defense; over 150,000 were deported.[7] When he was walking through the grounds of Kalinga after his conquest, rejoicing in his victory, he was moved by the number of bodies strewn there and the wails of the kith and kin of the dead.

Buddhist conversion

A similar four "Indian lion" Lion Capital of Ashoka atop an intact Ashoka Pillar at Wat U Mong near Chiang Mai, Thailand showing another larger Dharma Chakra / Ashoka Chakra atop the four lions thought to be missing in the Lion Capital of Ashoka at Sarnath Museum which has been adopted as the National Emblem of India.

As the legend goes, one day after the war was over, Ashoka ventured out to roam the city and all he could see were burnt houses and scattered corpses. This sight made him sick and he cried the famous monologue:

What have I done? If this is a victory, what's a defeat then? Is this a victory or a defeat? Is this justice or injustice? Is it gallantry or a rout? Is it valor to kill innocent children and women? Do I do it to widen the empire and for prosperity or to destroy the other's kingdom and splendor? One has lost her husband, someone else a father, someone a child, someone an unborn infant…. What's this debris of the corpses? Are these marks of victory or defeat? Are these vultures, crows, eagles the messengers of death or evil?

The brutality of the conquest led him to adopt Buddhism, and he used his position to propagate the relatively new religion to new heights, as far as ancient Rome and Egypt. He made Buddhism his state religion around 260 BC, and propagated it and preached it within his domain and worldwide from about 250 BC. Emperor Ashoka undoubtedly has to be credited with the first serious attempt to develop a Buddhist policy.

Ashokan Pillar at Vaishali

Prominent in this cause were his son Venerable Mahindra and daughter Sanghamitra (whose name means "friend of the Sangha"), who established Buddhism in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka). He built thousands of Stupas and Viharas for Buddhist followers. The Stupas of Sanchi are world famous and the stupa named Sanchi Stupa was built by Emperor Ashoka. During the remaining portion of Ashoka's reign, he pursued an official policy of nonviolence (ahimsa). Even the unnecessary slaughter or mutilation of animals was immediately abolished. Everyone became protected by the king's law against sport hunting and branding. Limited hunting was permitted for consumption reasons but Ashoka also promoted the concept of vegetarianism. Ashoka also showed mercy to those imprisoned, allowing them leave for the outside a day of the year. He attempted to raise the professional ambition of the common man by building universities for study, and water transit and irrigation systems for trade and agriculture. He treated his subjects as equals regardless of their religion, politics and caste. The kingdoms surrounding his, so easily overthrown, were instead made to be well-respected allies.

He is acclaimed for constructing hospitals for animals and renovating major roads throughout India. After this transformation, Ashoka came to be known as Dhammashoka (Sanskrit), meaning Ashoka, the follower of Dharma. Ashoka defined the main principles of dharma (dhamma) as nonviolence, tolerance of all sects and opinions, obedience to parents, respect for the Brahmans and other religious teachers and priests, liberality towards friends, humane treatment of servants, and generosity towards all. These principles suggest a general ethic of behaviour to which no religious or social group could object.

Some critics say that Ashoka was afraid of more wars, but among his neighbors, including the Seleucid Empire and the Greco-Bactrian kingdom established by Diodotus I, none could match his strength. He was a contemporary of both Antiochus I Soter and his successor Antiochus II Theos of the Seleucid dynasty as well as Diodotus I and his son Diodotus II of the Greco-Bactrian kingdom. If his inscriptions and edicts are well studied one finds that he was familiar with the Hellenic world but never edicts, which talk of friendly relations, give the names of both Antiochus of the Seleucid empire and Ptolemy III of Egypt. The fame of the Mauryan empire was widespread from the time that Ashoka's grandfather Chandragupta Maurya defeated Seleucus Nicator, the founder of the Seleucid Dynasty.

Stupa of Sanchi.

The source of much of our knowledge of Ashoka is the many inscriptions he had carved on pillars and rocks throughout the empire. All his inscriptions have the imperial touch and show compassionate loving. He addressed his people as his "children". These inscriptions promoted Buddhist morality and encouraged nonviolence and adherence to Dharma (duty or proper behavior), and they talk of his fame and conquered lands as well as the neighboring kingdoms holding up his might. One also gets some primary information about the Kalinga War and Ashoka's allies plus some useful knowledge on the civil administration. The Ashoka Pillar at Sarnath is the most popular of the relics left by Ashoka. Made of sandstone, this pillar records the visit of the emperor to Sarnath, in the 3rd century BC. It has a four-lion capital (four lions standing back to back) which was adopted as the emblem of the modern Indian republic. The lion symbolizes both Ashoka's imperial rule and the kingship of the Buddha. In translating these monuments, historians learn the bulk of what is assumed to have been true fact of the Mauryan Empire. It is difficult to determine whether or not some actual events ever happened, but the stone etchings clearly depict how Ashoka wanted to be thought of and remembered.

Ashoka's own words as known from his Edicts are: "All men are my children. I am like a father to them. As every father desires the good and the happiness of his children, I wish that all men should be happy always." Edward D'Cruz interprets the Ashokan dharma as a "religion to be used as a symbol of a new imperial unity and a cementing force to weld the diverse and heterogeneous elements of the empire".

Also, in the Edicts, Ashoka mentions that some of the people living in Hellenic countries as converts to Buddhism, although no Hellenic historical record of this event remain:

Now it is conquest by Dhamma [(which conquest means peaceful conversion, not military conquest)] that Beloved-of-the-Gods considers to be the best conquest. And it (conquest by Dhamma) has been won here, on the borders, even six hundred yojanas away, where the Greek king Antiochos rules, beyond there where the four kings named Ptolemy, Antigonos, Magas and Alexander rule, likewise in the south among the Cholas, the Pandyas, and as far as Tamraparni. Here in the king's domain among the Greeks, the Kambojas, the Nabhakas, the Nabhapamkits, the Bhojas, the Pitinikas, the Andhras and the Palidas, everywhere people are following Beloved-of-the-Gods' instructions in Dhamma. Even where Beloved-of-the-Gods' envoys have not been, these people too, having heard of the practice of Dhamma and the ordinances and instructions in Dhamma given by Beloved-of-the-Gods, are following it and will continue to do so.

Ashoka also claims that he encouraged the development of herbal medicine, for human and nonhuman animals, in their territories:

Everywhere within Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi's [Ashoka's] domain, and among the people beyond the borders, the Cholas, the Pandyas, the Satiyaputras, the Keralaputras, as far as Tamraparni and where the Greek king Antiochos rules, and among the kings who are neighbours of Antiochos, everywhere has Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, made provision for two types of medical treatment: medical treatment for humans and medical treatment for animals. Wherever medical herbs suitable for humans or animals are not available, I have had them imported and grown. Wherever medical roots or fruits are not available I have had them imported and grown. Along roads I have had wells dug and trees planted for the benefit of humans and animals.

The Greeks in India even seem to have played an active role in the propagation of Buddhism, as some of the emissaries of Ashoka, such as Dharmaraksita, are described in Pali sources as leading Greek (Yona) Buddhist monks, active in spreading Buddhism (the Mahavamsa, XII[9]).

Death and legacy

The Junagadh rock contains inscriptions by Ashoka (fourteen of the Edicts of Ashoka), Rudradaman I and Skandagupta.

Ashoka ruled for an estimated forty years. After his death, the Mauryan dynasty lasted just fifty more years. Ashoka had many wives and children, but many of their names are lost to time. Mahindra and Sanghamitra were twins born by his first wife, Devi, in the city of Ujjain. He had entrusted to them the job of making his state religion, Buddhism, more popular across the known and the unknown world. Mahindra and Sanghamitra went into Sri Lanka and converted the King, the Queen and their people to Buddhism. They were naturally not handling state affairs after him.

In his old age, he seems to have come under the spell of his youngest wife Tishyaraksha. It is said that she had got his son Kunala, the regent in Takshashila, blinded by a wily stratagem. The official executioners spared Kunala and he became a wandering singer accompanied by his favourite wife Kanchanmala. In Pataliputra, Ashoka hears Kunala's song, and realizes that Kunala's misfortune may have been a punishment for some past sin of the emperor himself and condemns Tishyaraksha to death, restoring Kunala to the court. Kunala was succeeded by his son, Samprati, but his rule did not last long after Ashoka's death.

The reign of Ashoka Maurya could easily have disappeared into history as the ages passed by, and would have had he not left behind a record of his trials. The testimony of this wise king was discovered in the form of magnificently sculpted pillars and boulders with a variety of actions and teachings he wished to be published etched into the stone. What Ashoka left behind was the first written language in India since the ancient city of Harappa. The language used for inscription was the then current spoken form called Prakrit.

In the year 185 BC, about fifty years after Ashoka's death, the last Maurya ruler, Brhadrata, was assassinated by the commander-in-chief of the Mauryan armed forces, Pusyamitra Sunga, while he was taking the Guard of Honor of his forces. Pusyamitra Sunga founded the Sunga dynasty (185 BC-78 BC) and ruled just a fragmented part of the Mauryan Empire. Many of the northwestern territories of the Mauryan Empire (modern-day Afghanistan and Northern Pakistan) became the Indo-Greek Kingdom.

In 1992, Ashoka was ranked #53 on Michael H. Hart's list of the most influential figures in history. In 2001, a semi-fictionalized portrayal of Ashoka's life was produced as a motion picture under the title Asoka. King Ashoka, the third monarch of the Indian Mauryan dynasty, has come to be regarded as one of the most exemplary rulers in world history. The British historian H.G. Wells has written: "Amidst the tens of thousands of names of monarchs that crowd the columns of history, their majesties and graciousnesses and serenities and royal highnesses and the like, the name of Asoka shines, and shines, almost alone, a star."

Buddhist Kingship

One of the more enduring legacies of Ashoka Maurya was the model that he provided for the relationship between Buddhism and the state. Throughout Theravada Southeastern Asia, the model of ruler ship embodied by Ashoka replaced the notion of divine kingship that had previously dominated (in the Angkor kingdom, for instance). Under this model of 'Buddhist kingship', the king sought to legitimize his rule not through descent from a divine source, but by supporting and earning the approval of the Buddhist sangha. Following Ashoka's example, kings established monasteries, funded the construction of stupas, and supported the ordination of monks in their kingdom. Many rulers also took an active role in resolving disputes over the status and regulation of the sangha, as Ashoka had in calling a conclave to settle a number of contentious issues during his reign. This development ultimately lead to a close association in many Southeast Asian countries between the monarchy and the religious hierarchy, an association that can still be seen today in the state-supported Buddhism of Thailand and the traditional role of the Thai king as both a religious and secular leader. Ashoka also said that all his courtiers were true to their self and governed the people in a moral manner.

Historical sources

Western sources

Ashoka was almost forgotten by the historians of the early British India, but James Prinsep contributed in the revelation of historical sources. Another important historian was British archaeologist John Hubert Marshall who was director-General of the Archaeological Survey of India. His main interests were Sanchi and Sarnath besides Harappa and Mohenjodaro. Sir Alexander Cunningham, a British archaeologist and army engineer and often known as the father of the Archaeological Survey of India, unveiled heritage sites like the Bharhut Stupa, Sarnath, Sanchi, and the Mahabodhi Temple; thus, his contribution is recognizable in realms of historical sources. Mortimer Wheeler, a British archaeologist, also exposed Ashokan historical sources, especially the Taxila.

Eastern sources

Bilingual inscription in (Greek and Aramaic) by king Ashoka, from Kandahar (Shar-i-kuna). Kabul Museum.

Information about the life and reign of Ashoka primarily comes from a relatively small number of Buddhist sources. In particular, the Sanskrit Ashokavadana ('Story of Ashoka'), written in the 2nd century, and the two Pāli chronicles of Sri Lanka (the Dipavamsa and Mahavamsa) provide most of the currently known information about Ashoka. Additional information is contributed by the Edicts of Asoka, whose authorship was finally attributed to the Ashoka of Buddhist legend after the discovery of dynastic lists that gave the name used in the edicts (Priyadarsi – 'favored by the Gods') as a title or additional name of Ashoka Mauriya. Architectural remains of his period have been found at Kumhrar, Patna, which include an 80-pillar hypostyl

Benito Mussolini Biography

Posted in Uncategorized on October 27, 2011 by Patel smital

Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini (Italian pronunciation: [beˈniːto musːoˈliːni]; 29 July 1883 – 28 April 1945) was an Italian politician who led the National Fascist Party and is credited with being one of the key figures in the creation of Fascism.

Mussolini became the 40th Prime Minister of Italy in 1922 and began using the title Il Duce by 1925. After 1936, his official title was Sua Eccellenza Benito Mussolini, Capo del Governo, Duce del Fascismo e Fondatore dell'Impero ("His Excellency Benito Mussolini, Head of Government, Duce of Fascism, and Founder of the Empire")[1] Mussolini also created and held the supreme military rank of First Marshal of the Empire along with King Victor Emmanuel III of Italy, which gave him and the King joint supreme control over the military of Italy. Mussolini remained in power until he was replaced in 1943; for a short period after this until his death, he was the leader of the Italian Social Republic.

Mussolini was among the founders of Italian Fascism, which included elements of nationalism, corporatism, national syndicalism, expansionism, social progress, and anti-socialism in combination with censorship of subversives and state propaganda. In the years following his creation of the Fascist ideology, Mussolini influenced, or achieved admiration from, a wide variety of political figures.[2]

Among the domestic achievements of Mussolini from the years 1924–1939 were: his public works programmes such as the taming of the Pontine Marshes, the improvement of job opportunities, the public transport, and the so-called Italian economic battles. Mussolini also solved the Roman Question by concluding the Lateran Treaty between the Kingdom of Italy and the Holy See.

On 10 June 1940, Mussolini led Italy into World War II on the side of the Axis despite initially siding with France against Germany in the early 1930s. Believing the war would be short-lived, he declared war on France and the United Kingdom in order to gain territories in the peace treaty that would soon follow.[3]

Three years later, Mussolini was deposed at the Grand Council of Fascism, prompted by the Allied invasion of Italy. Soon after his incarceration began, Mussolini was rescued from prison in the daring Gran Sasso raid by German special forces. Following his rescue, Mussolini headed the Italian Social Republic in parts of Italy that were not occupied by Allied forces. In late April 1945, with total defeat looming, Mussolini attempted to escape to Switzerland, only to be quickly captured and summarily executed near Lake Como by Italian partisans. His body was then taken to Milan where it was hung upside down at a petrol station for public viewing and to provide confirmation of his demise. [4]

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Early life

Birthplace of Benito Mussolini, today used as a museum.

Mussolini was born in Dovia di Predappio, a small town in the province of Forlì in Emilia-Romagna on 29 July 1883. In the Fascist era, Predappio was dubbed "Duce's town", and Forlì was "Duce's city". Pilgrims went to Predappio and Forlì, to see the birthplace of Mussolini. His father Alessandro Mussolini was a blacksmith and a socialist,[5] while his mother Rosa Mussolini, née Maltoni, a devoutly Catholic schoolteacher.[6] Owing to his father's political leanings, Mussolini was named Benito after Mexican reformist President Benito Juárez, while his middle names Andrea and Amilcare were from Italian socialists Andrea Costa and Amilcare Cipriani.[7] Benito was the eldest of his parents' three children. His siblings Arnaldo and Edvige followed.[8]

As a young boy, Mussolini would spend time helping his father in his smithy.[9] Mussolini's early political views were heavily influenced by his father, Alessandro Mussolini, a revolutionary socialist who idolized 19th century Italian nationalist figures with humanist tendencies such as Carlo Pisacane, Giuseppe Mazzini, and Giuseppe Garibaldi.[10] His father's political outlook combined views of anarchist figures like Carlo Cafiero and Mikhail Bakunin, the military authoritarianism of Garibaldi, and the nationalism of Mazzini.[11] In 1902, at the anniversary of Garibaldi's death, Benito Mussolini made a public speech in praise of the republican nationalist.[11] The conflict between his parents about religion meant that, unlike most Italians, Mussolini was not baptised at birth and would not be until much later in life. As a compromise with his mother, Mussolini was sent to a boarding school run by Salesian monks. Mussolini was rebellious and was soon expelled after a series of behaviour related incidents, including throwing stones at the congregation after Mass, stabbing a fellow student in the hand and throwing an inkpot at a teacher.[9] After joining a new school, Mussolini achieved good grades, and qualified as an elementary schoolmaster in 1901.[6][7]

Emigration to Switzerland and military service

Mussolini's booking photograph following his arrest by Swiss police, 1903.

In 1902, Mussolini emigrated to Switzerland, partly to avoid military service.[5] He worked briefly as a stonemason in Geneva, Fribourg and Bern, but was unable to find a permanent job.

During this time he studied the ideas of the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, the sociologist Vilfredo Pareto, and the syndicalist Georges Sorel. Mussolini also later credited the Marxist Charles Péguy and the syndicalist Hubert Lagardelle as some of his influences.[12] Sorel's emphasis on the need for overthrowing decadent liberal Democracy and Capitalism by the use of violence, direct action, the general strike, and the use of neo-Machiavellian appeals to emotion, impressed Mussolini deeply.[5]

Mussolini became active in the Italian socialist movement in Switzerland, working for the paper L'Avvenire del Lavoratore, organizing meetings, giving speeches to workers and serving as secretary of the Italian workers' union in Lausanne.[13] In 1903, he was arrested by the Bernese police because of his advocacy of a violent general strike, spent two weeks in jail, was deported to Italy, set free there, and returned to Switzerland.[14] In 1904, after having been arrested again in Lausanne for falsifying his papers, he returned to Italy to take advantage of an amnesty for desertion of which he had been convicted in absentia.[13]

He subsequently volunteered for military service in the Italian Army. After serving for two years in the military (from January 1905 until September 1906), he returned to teaching.[15]

Political journalist and Socialist

In February 1908, Mussolini once again left Italy, this time to take the job as the secretary of the labor party in the Italian-speaking city of Trento, which at the time was under control of Austria-Hungary. He also did office work for the local Socialist Party, and edited its newspaper L'Avvenire del Lavoratore (The Future of the Worker). Returning to Italy, he spent a brief time in Milan, and then in 1910 he returned to his hometown of Forli, where he edited the weekly Lotta di classe (The Class Struggle).

During this time, he published Il Trentino veduto da un Socialista (Trento as seen by a Socialist) in the radical periodical La Voce.[16] He also wrote several essays about German literature, some stories, and one novel: L'amante del Cardinale: Claudia Particella, romanzo storico (The Cardinal's Mistress). This novel he co-wrote with Santi Corvaja, and was published as a serial book in the Trento newspaper Il Popolo. It was released in installments from 20 January to 11 May 1910[17] The novel was bitterly anticlerical, and years later was withdrawn from circulation after Mussolini made a truce with the Vatican.[5]

By now, he was considered to be one of Italy's most prominent Socialists. In September 1911, Mussolini participated in a riot, led by Socialists, against the Italian war in Libya. He bitterly denounced Italy's "imperialist war" to capture the Libyan capital city of Tripoli, an action that earned him a five-month jail term.[18] After his release he helped expel from the ranks of the Socialist party two "revisionists" who had supported the war, Ivanoe Bonomi, and Leonida Bissolati. As a result, he was rewarded the editorship of the Socialist Party newspaper Avanti! Under his leadership, its circulation soon rose from 20,000 to 100,000.[19]

In 1913, he published Giovanni Hus, il veridico (Jan Hus, true prophet), an historical and political biography about the life and mission of the Czech ecclesiastic reformer Jan Hus, and his militant followers, the Hussites. During this socialist period of his life Mussolini sometimes used the pen name "Vero Eretico" (sincere misbeliever).

While Mussolini was associated with socialism, he also was supportive of figures who opposed egalitarianism. For instance Mussolini was influenced by Nietszche's anti-Christian ideas and negation of God's existence.[20] Mussolini saw Nietzsche as similar to Jean-Marie Guyau, who advocated a philosophy of action.[20] Mussolini's use of Nietzsche made him a highly unorthodox socialist, due to Nietzsche's promotion of elitism and anti-egalitarian views.[20] Mussolini felt that socialism had faltered due to the failures of Marxist determinism and social democratic reformism, and believed that Nietzsche's ideas would strengthen socialism.[20] While associated with socialism, Mussolini's writings eventually indicated that he had abandoned Marxism and egalitarianism in favour of Nietzsche's übermensch concept and anti-egalitarianism.[21]

Expulsion from the Italian Socialist Party

With the outbreak of World War I a number of socialist parties initially supported the war when it began in August 1914.[22] Once the war began, Austrian, British, French, German, and Russian socialists followed the rising nationalist current by supporting their country's intervention in the war.[12] The outbreak of the war had resulted in a surge of Italian nationalism and the war supported by a variety of political factions. One of the most prominent and popular Italian nationalist supporters of the war was Gabriele d'Annunzio who promoted Italian irredentism and helped sway the Italian public to support intervention in the war.[23] The Italian Liberal Party under the leadership of Paolo Boselli promoted intervention in the war on the side of the Allies and utilized the Società Dante Alighieri to promote Italian nationalism.[24][25] Italian socialists were divided on whether to support the war or oppose it.[26] Prior to Mussolini making a position on the war, a number of revolutionary syndicalists had announced their support of intervention, including Alceste De Ambris, Filippo Corridoni, and Angelo Oliviero Olivetti.[27] The Italian Socialist Party decided to oppose the war after anti-militarist protestors had been killed, resulting in a general strike called Red Week.[28]

Mussolini initially held official support for the party's decision an in an August 1914 article, Mussolini wrote "Down with the War. We remain neutral."[29] However, he saw the war as an opportunity, both for his own ambitions as well as those of socialists and Italians.[29] He was influenced by anti-Austrian Italian nationalist sentiments, believing that the war offered Italians in Austria-Hungary the chance to liberate themselves from rule of the Habsburgs.[29] He eventually decided to declare support for the war by appealing to the need for socialists to overthrow the Hohenzollern and Habsburg monarchies in Germany and Austria-Hungary whom he claimed had consistently repressed socialism.[29] He further justified his position by denouncing the Central Powers for being reactionary powers; for pursuing imperialist designs against Belgium and Serbia as well as historically against Denmark, France, and against Italians, since hundreds of thousands of Italians were under Habsburg rule.[27] He claimed that the fall of Hohenzollern and Habsburg monarchies and the repression of "reactionary" Turkey would create conditions beneficial for the working class.[27] While he was supportive of the Entente powers, Mussolini responded to the conservative nature of Tsarist Russia by claiming that the mobilization required for the war would undermine Russia's reactionary authoritarianism and the war would bring Russia to social revolution.[27] He claimed that for Italy the war would complete the process of Risorgimento by uniting the Italians in Austria-Hungary into Italy and by allowing the common people of Italy to be participating members of the Italian nation in what would be Italy's first national war.[27] Thus he claimed that the vast social changes that the war could offer meant that it should be supported as a revolutionary war.[27]

As Mussolini's support for the intervention solidified, he became in conflict with socialists who opposed the war. He attacked the opponents of the war and claimed that those proletarians who supported pacifism were out of step with the proletarians who had joined the rising interventionist vanguard that was preparing Italy for a revolutionary war.[30] He began to criticize the Italian Socialist Party and socialism itself for having failed to recognize the national problems that had led to the outbreak of the war.[30] He was expelled from the party due to his support of intervention.

The following excerpts are from a police report prepared by the Inspector-General of Public Security in Milan, G. Gasti, that describe his background and his position on the First World War that resulted in his ouster from the Italian Socialist Party.

The Inspector General wrote:

Regarding Mussolini
Professor Benito Mussolini, … 38, revolutionary socialist, has a police record; elementary school teacher qualified to teach in secondary schools; former first secretary of the Chambers in Cesena, Forli, and Ravenna; after 1912 editor of the newspaper Avanti! to which he gave a violent suggestive and intransigent orientation. In October 1914, finding himself in opposition to the directorate of the Italian Socialist party because he advocated a kind of active neutrality on the part of Italy in the War of the Nations against the party's tendency of absolute neutrality, he withdrew on the twentieth of that month from the directorate of Avanti! Then on the fifteenth of November [1914], thereafter, he initiated publication of the newspaper Il Popolo d'Italia, in which he supported – in sharp contrast to Avanti! and amid bitter polemics against that newspaper and its chief backers – the thesis of Italian intervention in the war against the militarism of the Central Empires. For this reason he was accused of moral and political unworthiness and the party thereupon decided to expel him… Thereafter he … undertook a very active campaign in behalf of Italian intervention, participating in demonstrations in the piazzas and writing quite violent articles in Popolo d'Italia…[19]

In his summary, the Inspector also notes:

He was the ideal editor of Avanti! for the Socialists. In that line of work he was greatly esteemed and beloved. Some of his former comrades and admirers still confess that there was no one who understood better how to interpret the spirit of the proletariat and there was no one who did not observe his apostasy with sorrow. This came about not for reasons of self-interest or money. He was a sincere and passionate advocate, first of vigilant and armed neutrality, and later of war; and he did not believe that he was compromising with his personal and political honesty by making use of every means – no matter where they came from or wherever he might obtain them – to pay for his newspaper, his program and his line of action. This was his initial line. It is difficult to say to what extent his socialist convictions (which he never either openly or privately abjure) may have been sacrificed in the course of the indispensable financial deals which were necessary for the continuation of the struggle in which he was engaged… But assuming these modifications did take place … he always wanted to give the appearance of still being a socialist, and he fooled himself into thinking that this was the case.[31]

Beginning of Fascism and service in World War I

After being ousted by the Italian Socialist Party for his support of Italian intervention, Mussolini made a radical transformation, ending his support for class conflict and joining in support of revolutionary nationalism transcending class lines.[30] He formed the interventionist newspaper Il Popolo d'Italia and the Fasci Rivoluzionari d'Azione Internazionalista ("Revolutionary Fasci for International Action") in October 1914.[25] His nationalist support of intervention enabled him to raise funds from Ansaldo (an armaments firm) and other companies to create Il Popolo d'Italia to convince socialists and revolutionaries to support the war.[32] Further funding for Mussolini's Fascists during the war came from the French sources beginning in May 1915.[33] A major source of this funding from France is believed to have probably been from French socialists who sent support to dissident socialists who wanted Italian intervention on France's side.[33]

On 5 December 1914, Mussolini denounced orthodox socialism for having failed to recognize that the war had brought about national identity and loyalty as being of greater significance than class distinction.[30] His transformation was fully demonstrated in a speech he made in which he acknowledged the nation as an entity, a notion that he had previously rejected prior to the war, saying:

The nation has not disappeared. We used to believe that the concept was totally without substance. Instead we see the nation arise as a palpitating reality before us! … Class cannot destroy the nation. Class reveals itself as a collection of interests—but the nation is a history of sentiments, traditions, language, culture, and race. Class can become an integral part of the nation, but the one cannot eclipse the other.[34]
The class struggle is a vain formula, without effect and consequence wherever one finds a people that has not integrated itself into its proper linguistic and racial confines—where the national problem has not been definitely resolved. In such circumstances the class movement finds itself impaired by an inauspicious historic climate.supsupsupsup

Adolf Hitler Biography

Posted in Uncategorized on October 27, 2011 by Patel smital

Adolf Hitler 20 April 1889 – 30 April 1945) was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party (German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP), commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). He was Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945, and head of state (as Führer und Reichskanzler) from 1934 to 1945. Hitler is most commonly associated with the rise of fascism in Europe, World War II, and the Holocaust.

A decorated veteran of World War I, Hitler joined the German Workers' Party, precursor of the Nazi Party, in 1919, and became leader of the NSDAP in 1921. In 1923 Hitler attempted a coup d'état, known as the Beer Hall Putsch, at the Bürgerbräukeller beer hall in Munich. The failed coup resulted in Hitler's imprisonment, during which time he wrote his memoir, Mein Kampf (My Struggle). After his release in 1924, Hitler gained support by promoting Pan-Germanism, antisemitism, and anti-communism with charismatic oratory and propaganda. He was appointed chancellor in 1933 and transformed the Weimar Republic into the Third Reich, a single-party dictatorship based on the totalitarian and autocratic ideology of Nazism.

Hitler's avowed aim was to establish a New Order of absolute Nazi German hegemony in continental Europe. His foreign and domestic policies had the goal of seizing Lebensraum (living space) for the Germanic people. He oversaw the rearmament of Germany and the invasion of Poland by the Wehrmacht in September 1939, which led to the outbreak of World War II in Europe.[2]

Under Hitler's direction, German forces and their European allies at one point occupied most of Europe and North Africa. These gains were reversed in 1945 when the Allied armies defeated the German army. Hitler's racially motivated policies resulted in the deaths of as many as 17 million people,[3] including an estimated six million Jews and between 500,000 and 1,500,000 Roma targeted in the Holocaust.[4]

In the final days of the war, during the Battle of Berlin in 1945, Hitler married his long-time mistress, Eva Braun. On 30 April 1945—less than two days later— the two committed suicide to avoid capture by the Red Army, and their corpses were burned.[5]

Contents

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Early years

Ancestry

Adolf's mother, Klara

Hitler's father, Alois Hitler, was an illegitimate child of Maria Anna Schicklgruber. The name of Alois' father was not listed on Alois' birth certificate, and he bore his mother's surname.[6][7] In 1842 Johann Georg Hiedler married Maria, and in 1876 Johann testified before a notary and three witnesses that he was the father of Alois.[8] Despite his testimony, the question of Alois' paternity remained unresolved. For example, Hans Frank suggested the existence of letters claiming that Alois' mother was employed as a housekeeper for a Jewish family in Graz and that the family's 19-year-old son, Leopold Frankenberger, had fathered Alois.[7]. No Frankenberger, Jewish or otherwise, is registered in Graz for that period.[9] This claim remained unsupported, however, and Frank himself did not believe that Hitler had Jewish ancestry.[10] The suggestion that Alois' father was Jewish was also doubted by historians in the 1990s,[11][12] and Ian Kershaw dismisses the Frankenberger story as a "smear" by Hitler's adversaries. Kershaw noted that there was no evidence for a family named Frankenberger living in Graz at the time. All Jews had been expelled from Graz under Maximilian I in the 15th century, and were not allowed to settle in Styria until the Basic Laws were passed in 1849.[9][12]

At age 39 Alois assumed the surname Hitler, also spelled as Hiedler, Hüttler, or Huettler; the name was probably regularised to its final spelling by a clerk. The origin of the name is either "one who lives in a hut" (Standard German Hütte), "shepherd" (Standard German hüten "to guard", English heed), or is from the Slavic words Hidlar and Hidlarcek.[13]

Childhood

Adolf Hitler was born on 20 April 1889 at around 6:30 pm at the Gasthof zum Pommer, an inn in Ranshofen,[14] a village annexed in 1938 to the municipality of Braunau am Inn, Upper Austria. He was the third of five children to Alois Hitler and Klara Pölzl. Adolf's older siblings – Gustav and Ida – died in infancy.[15] Psychologist Erich Fromm describes the mother and father as "stable, well-intentioned" people.[16] Hitler was attached to his mother, who is thought to have pampered him in his early years. His father was a hard-working self-made man who secured a comfortable livelihood for the family. Though often described as a tyrant, Alois' character conformed to the authoritarian type of his age, milieu, and class. There is no evidence he ever beat his son.[17]

Adolf Hitler as an infant (c. 1889/1890)

At the age of three, his family moved to Kapuzinerstrasse 5[18] in Passau, Germany. There, Hitler would acquire the distinctive lower Bavarian dialect, rather than Austrian German, which marked his speech all of his life.[19][20][21] In 1894, the family relocated to Leonding near Linz, and in June 1895, Alois retired to a small landholding at Hafeld near Lambach, where he tried his hand at farming and beekeeping. Adolf attended school in nearby Fischlham, and in his free time, he played "Cowboys and Indians". Hitler became fixated on warfare after finding a picture book about the Franco-Prussian War among his father's belongings.[22][23]

The move to Hafeld appears to have coincided with the onset of intense father-son conflicts, because Adolf refused to conform to strict school discipline.[24] Alois Hitler's farming efforts at Hafeld ended in failure, and in 1897 the family moved to Lambach. Hitler attended a Catholic school in an 11th-century Benedictine cloister, the walls of which bore engravings and crests that contained the symbol of the swastika.[18] In Lambach the eight-year-old Hitler sang in the church choir, took singing lessons, and even entertained thoughts of one day becoming a priest.[25] In 1898, the family returned permanently to Leonding. The death of his younger brother, Edmund from measles on 2 February 1900 deeply affected Hitler. He changed from being confident and outgoing and an excellent student, to a morose, detached, and sullen boy who constantly fought his father and his teachers.[26]

Alois had made a successful career in the customs bureau and wanted his son to follow in his footsteps. Hitler later dramatised an episode from this period when his father took him to visit a customs office, depicting it as an event that gave rise to a unforgiving antagonism between father and son who were both equally strong-willed.[27][28][29]

Ignoring his son's desire to attend a classical high school and become an artist, in September 1900 his father sent Adolf to the Realschule in Linz, a technical high school of about 300 students. (This was the same high school that Adolf Eichmann would attend some 17 years later.)[30] Hitler rebelled against this decision, and in Mein Kampf revealed that he did poorly in school, hoping that once his father saw "what little progress I was making at the technical school he would let me devote myself to my dream."[31]

Hitler became obsessed with German nationalism from a young age as a way to rebel against his father, who proudly served the Austrian government. Although many Austrians considered themselves Germans, they were loyal to Austria. Hitler expressed loyalty only to Germany, despising the declining Habsburg Monarchy and its rule over an ethnically-variegated empire.[32][33] Hitler and his friends used the German greeting "Heil", and sang the German anthem "Deutschland Über Alles" instead of the Austrian Imperial anthem.[34]

After Alois' sudden death on 3 January 1903, Hitler's behaviour at the technical school became even more disruptive, and he was asked to leave in 1904. He enrolled at the Realschule in Steyr in September 1904, but upon completing his second year, he and his friends went out for a night of celebration and drinking. While drunk, Hitler tore up his school certificate and used the pieces as toilet paper. The stained certificate was brought to the attention of the school's principal, who "… gave him such a dressing-down that the boy was reduced to shivering jelly. It was probably the most painful and humiliating experience of his life."[35] Hitler was expelled, never to return to school again.

At age 15, Hitler took part in his First Communion on Whitsunday, 22 May 1904, at the Linz Cathedral.[36] His sponsor was Emanuel Lugert, a friend of his late father.[37]

Early adulthood in Vienna and Munich

From 1905, Hitler lived a bohemian life in Vienna with financial support from orphan's benefits and his mother. He was rejected twice by the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna (1907–1908), because of his "unfitness for painting", and was recommended to study architecture.[38] However, he lacked the academic credentials required for architecture school:

In a few days I myself knew that I should some day become an architect. To be sure, it was an incredibly hard road; for the studies I had neglected out of spite at the Realschule were sorely needed. One could not attend the Academy's architectural school without having attended the building school at the Technik, and the latter required a high-school degree. I had none of all this. The fulfilment of my artistic dream seemed physically impossible.[39]

The Courtyard of the Old Residency in Munich. Adolf Hitler, 1914

On 21 December 1907, Hitler's mother died of breast cancer at age 47; Hitler was devastated, and carried the grief from her death with him for the rest of his life. Ordered by a court in Linz, Hitler gave his share of the orphan's benefits to his sister Paula, and at the age of 21, he inherited money from an aunt. He struggled as a painter in Vienna, copying scenes from postcards and selling his paintings to merchants and tourists. After being rejected a second time by the Academy of Arts, Hitler ran out of money. In 1909, he lived in a shelter for the homeless, and by 1910, he had settled into a house for poor working men on Meldemannstraße. Another resident of the shelter, Reinhold Hanisch, sold Hitler's paintings, until the two men had a bitter falling-out.[40]

Hitler stated that he first became an antisemite in Vienna,[41] which had a large Jewish community, including Orthodox Jews who had fled the pogroms in Russia.

There were few Jews in Linz. In the course of centuries their outward appearance had become Europeanised and had taken on a human look; in fact, I even took them for Germans. The absurdity of this idea did not dawn on me because I saw no distinguishing feature but the strange religion. The fact that they had, as I believed, been persecuted on this account sometimes almost turned my distaste at unfavorable remarks about them into horror. Thus far I did not so much as suspect the existence of an organized opposition to the Jews. Then I came to Vienna.[41]

Once, as I was strolling through the Inner City, I suddenly encountered an apparition in a black caftan and black hair locks. Is this a Jew? was my first thought. For, to be sure, they had not looked like that in Linz. I observed the man furtively and cautiously, but the longer I stared at this foreign face, scrutinizing feature for feature, the more my first question assumed a new form: Is this a German?[42]

Hitler's account has been questioned by his childhood friend, August Kubizek, who suggested that Hitler was already a "confirmed antisemite" before he left Linz for Vienna. Brigitte Hamann has challenged his account, writing that "of all those early witnesses who can be taken seriously Kubizek is the only one to portray young Hitler as an anti-Semite and precisely in this respect he is not trustworthy."[43] If Hitler was an antisemite even before settling in Vienna, apparently he did not act on his views. He was a frequent dinner guest in a wealthy Jewish home: he interacted well with Jewish merchants, and sold his paintings almost exclusively to Jewish dealers.[44][45]

At the time Hitler lived there, Vienna was a hotbed of traditional religious prejudice and 19th-century racism. Fears of been overrun by immigrants from the East were widespread and the populist mayor, Karl Lueger, was adept at exploiting the rhetoric of virulent antisemitism for political effect. Georg Schönerer's pangermanic ethnic antisemitism had a strong following and base in the Mariahilf district, where Hitler lived.[46] Local newspapers like the Deutsches Volksblatt, which Hitler read, fanned prejudices, as did Rudolf Vrba's writings, which played on Christian fears of being swamped by an influx of eastern Jews.[47] He probably read occult writings, like the antisemitic magazine Ostara, published by Lanz von Liebenfels.[48] Hostile to what he saw as Catholic "Germanophobia", he developed a strong admiration for Luther.[49] Luther's foundational antisemitic writings were to play an important role in later Nazi propaganda.[50]

Hitler received the final part of his father's estate in May 1913 and moved to Munich. He wrote in Mein Kampf that he had always longed to live in a "real" German city. In Munich he further pursued his interest in architecture and studied the writings of Houston Stewart Chamberlain, who, a decade later, was to become the first person of national—and even international—repute to align himself with Hitler and the Nazi movement.[51] Hitler also may have left Vienna to avoid conscription into the Austrian army; he was disinclined to serve the Habsburg state and was repulsed by what he perceived as a mixture of "races" in the Austrian army.[52] After a physical exam on 5 February 1914, he was deemed unfit for service and returned to Munich.aaaa