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Archive: 2019 (19 Posts)

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A Handbook for 18th-Century Country Living: Andrei Bolotov’s “Ekonomicheskoi magazin” (Economic Storehouse)

Posted by: Taru Spiegel

(Guest post by Christine Ruane, Professor Emerita of History, University of Tulsa) Tucked away in the stacks of the Library of Congress’ Rare Book Division are 40 small, leather-bound volumes of an 18th-century Russian periodical entitled “Ekonomicheskoi magazin””(Economic storehouse). Each book consists of 400 pages of what was then the latest scientific advice on how …

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Feminism and “Égalité”: France Makes Gender Equality a Global Cause

Posted by: Taru Spiegel

(The following is a post by Erika Hope Spencer, reference specialist, European Division.) July 14th (Le Quatorze Juillet) marks France’s National Holiday (La Fête Nationale), when the 1789 battle cry “Freedom, Equality, Fraternity!” (Liberté, égalité, fraternité) was enshrined in the French national tradition. Marianne, the visual symbol of the French Republic (la République) has been …

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Under Six Flags: The Curious Career of the CSS Stonewall

Posted by: Taru Spiegel

(The following is a post by Juan Manuel Pérez, Reference Specialist, Hispanic Division) During the American Civil War (1861-65), as the Union Navy of the North was putting a chokehold on the Southern Confederacy by its naval blockade, the Confederate government of the South sought to break it by trying to purchase or build warships in …

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The Three Musketeers and d’Artagnan Ride into the Public Domain—Again!

Posted by: Taru Spiegel

This year, a large number of well-known works entered the public domain, thanks to changes in copyright law over time. One of these books is a popular edition of “The Three Musketeers,” written by Alexandre Dumas (1802-70), translated into English by Philip Schuyler Allen (1871-1937), and illustrated by the well-known artist, Milo Winter (1888-1956). Earlier …

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Albania’s National Hero, Scanderbeg: A Legendary Military Strategist

Posted by: Taru Spiegel

(The following is a post by Grant G. Harris, chief, and Taru Spiegel, reference specialist, European Division. Based on papers presented by Grant G. Harris in 2018.) As the Ottoman Empire expanded into Europe in the 15th and 16th centuries, the religious differences between the Islamic Ottomans and the Christian Europeans, and shifting political alliances, made for …

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Alternative Public Forums for Italian Women Authors and Readers at the Turn of the 19th Century

Posted by: Taru Spiegel

(The following is a post by Lucia Wolf, reference librarian for Italy, European Division.) Although Italy has a long history of celebrated female authors, women’s writing in that country really began to flourish in the 19th century, thanks to the proliferation of journals that provided public forums for women to express themselves. The Library of …

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Talleyrand: A Diplomat Par Excellence

Posted by: Taru Spiegel

(The following is a post by Taru Spiegel, reference specialist, European Division.) During his lifetime, and for quite some time after that, the legendary French politician and diplomat, Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord (1754-1838), was a much-discussed, controversial figure both at home and abroad. He managed to survive, and significantly influence, conflicting trends during the French Revolution …