Louis Braille designed the coding system, based on patterns of raised dots, by which the blind can read through touch.
Louis Brandeis was a lawyer who dedicated his life to public service, earning the nickname the "people's attorney." As an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, he tried to balance the developing powers of modern government and society with the defending of individual freedoms.
Marlon Brando was born in Omaha, Nebraska, on April 3, 1924. When he was six years old his family moved to Illinois.
Leonid Brezhnev held a number of important government posts in the former Soviet Union, and was the best known of a three-man committee that held power there from 1964 until his death in 1982. He played a large role in improving relations between the Soviet Union and the United States in the 1970s.
Charlotte Brontë was one of three English sisters who had books published in the mid-1800s. Her writing described, with a dramatic force that was entirely new to English fiction, the conflict between love and independence and the struggle of the individual to maintain his or her self-esteem.
Emily Brontë was one of three English sisters who had books published in the mid-1800s. Her only major work, Wuthering Heights, is considered one of the greatest novels in the history of literature.
Gwendolyn Brooks was the first African American to receive a Pulitzer Prize for Poetry and is best known for her poetic descriptions of African American city life.
American author and editor Helen Gurley Brown first achieved fame for her best-selling book Sex and the Single Girl. After becoming editor of Cosmopolitan, she transformed it into a top-selling magazine for young women in more than twenty-seven different countries.
"Godfather of Soul" James Brown unleashed a string of rhythm-and-blues hits through the 1960s and early 1970s.
John Brown was one of the most famous abolitionists, or opponents of slavery, in history. He traveled widely to gather support and money for his cause.
Rachel Fuller Brown, with her associate Elizabeth Hazen, developed the first effective antibiotic against fungal disease in humans—the most important biomedical breakthrough since the discovery of penicillin two decades earlier. Nystatin earned more than $13 million in royalties during Brown's lifetime, which she and Hazen dedicated to scientific research.
Elizabeth Barrett was the first of twelve children born to Edward and Mary Moulton (the Moultons later took the last name Barrett) on March 6, 1806, in Durham, England. Reproduced by permission of Archive Photos, Inc.
The English poet Robert Browning is best known for his dramatic monologues (dramatic readings done by only one character). By vividly portraying a central character against a social background, these poems explore complex human motives in a variety of historical periods.
Pat Buchanan is one of the country's most famous conservatives. Buchanan writes books and articles and appears on television to express his extreme conservative views on the issues that he believes are important to the future of the United States.
Pearl S. Buck was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize in Literature.
The Buddha was an Indian philosopher (seeker of wisdom), religious teacher, and the historical founder of Buddhism. He is regarded by some as a human spiritual teacher (concerned with religious values) and by others as an all-knowing supreme being.
Ralph Bunche was the highest American official in the United Nations. In 1950 he became the first African American to win the Nobel Peace Prize for his work on the negotiations that led to a truce in the First Arab-Israeli War (1948–49).
Warren Burger worked his way through law school. Through hard work, political connections, and a firm belief in law and order, he became chief justice of the U.S.
Intense feeling and technical skill characterizes the work of the Scottish poet Robert Burns. His best work is in Scots, the language of southern Scotland.
American lawyer and politician Aaron Burr (1756–1836) was vice president under Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826). Political conspiracy and his famous duel with Alexander Hamilton (1755–1804) secured Burr an unfavorable place in American history.
A successful businessman, George Bush emerged as a national political leader during the 1970s. He served two terms as vice president (1981–89) under Republican President Ronald Reagan (1911–), and in 1988, he was elected the forty-first president of the United States.
In 2000 George W. Bush (1946–) became the forty-third president of the United States, marking a rise to the top American political office in a relatively short political career.
A former librarian and elementary-school teacher from Texas, Laura Bush's marriage to President George W. Bush moved her into the national spotlight.
The English poet Lord Byron was one of the most important figures of the Romantic Movement (1785–1830; a period when English literature was full of virtuous heroes and themes of love and triumph). Because of his works, active life, and physical beauty he came to be considered the perfect image of the romantic poet-hero.
J ulius Caesar was a Roman general and politician who overthrew the Roman Republic and established the rule of the emperors. Caesar used the problems and hardships of the period to create his own supreme political and military power.
Caligula (12–41 C. E.) was the third emperor of Rome.
Maria Callas was one of the great coloratura sopranos (female vocalists who specialize in an elaborate form of opera singing) of the twentieth century. She revitalized opera and increased its appeal because of her dramatic skill.
Best known for the song "Minnie the Moocher," Cab Calloway was a famous singer and bandleader beginning in the 1920s, and he remained active in music throughout his golden years.