Some fun links from around the web:
- 10 facts you may not know happened. Otherwise known as ‘Princess Olga of Kiev doesn’t care that you want her to get married’.
- The demolition of the Mayfair building and adjacent pub in New York has revealed a message from the past. Rooms for $1 anyone?
- An article about how the accurate prediction of weather was essential for the events of D-Day. Complete with weather map.
- Interesting, if rather upsetting, article regarding the views of Chinese youth today regarding the 1989 events of Tienanmen Square and how censure-ship is effecting opinions of those who were too young to remember it personally.
Historical Book Recommendation of the Week:
‘Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman’ by Robert K. Massie
This is an absolutely fascinating look at the life of the woman who ended up shaping much of modern Russia, both geographically and historically. Born a relatively minor German princess, Catherine is well deserving of the title ‘the great’ as she spent much of her adult years striving to bring the relatively remote country of Russia onto the same level as the great countries of Europe. Endlessly curious she encouraged many of the remarkable artists, thinkers, and leaders of the time to come north and visit her and, even when that failed, she frequently maintained written correspondences with them regarding their ideas.
Fantastically written, Robert Massie doesn’t shy away from describing the less than ideal qualities of this pivotal woman but, rather than making her unlikable, this simply creates a far more human depiction of Catherine then her life, her portraits, and her title typically portray.