Obituaries Biography

Mahmoud Abbas Biography

His leadership "was meant to open a new, post-Yasir Afarat chapter in Israeli-Palestinian relations in which the peace plan known as the road-map was meant to lead both sides towards resolution," the British Broadcasting Corporation wrote on its BBC News website. "But, on one side the bitter struggle between Israel and Hamas has left him on the sidelines.

Edward Abbey Biography

Abbey's voluminous writings, mostly about or set in the Western deserts, ranged from intensely detailed descriptions of the natural world to angry or satirical commentaries on effects of modern civilization on American wildlands. One of Abbey's most widely quoted aphorisms, first appearing in the essay collection Desert Solitaire, held that "Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell." Abbey held anarchist convictions, and he viewed government and industry as collaborators in the destruction of the natural environment.

Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab Biography

Ibn Abd al-Wahhab's life and beliefs are a source of controversy, both within Islam and in the Western non-Islamic world. Even the term "Wahabbism" is controversial, for within Ibn Abd al-Wahhab's own lifetime it (and its Arabic equivalents) were used primarily by Ibn Abd al-Wahhab's opponents; his followers called themselves Muwahiddun or Unitarians, believers in a unity.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Biography

With a hard-line attitude and a devout, almost mystical Islamic faith forged partly in Iran's earlier conflicts with Iraq and with the United States, Ahmadinejad defied Western demands that Iran halt the development of its nuclear energy program, which in the view of many Western leaders was intended to put Iran on the path toward acquisition of nuclear weapons. That possibility alarmed no one more than the leaders of Israel, whose legitimacy as a state Ahmadinejad repeatedly questioned.

Elsie Allen Biography

Elsie Allen was born September 22, 1899, amid the neat rows of a hop field outside what is now Santa Rosa, California. Her parents were George (of the Ukiah Pomo) and Annie (of the Cloverdale Pomo) Comanche.

Sarah Allen Biography

While almost nothing is definitively known about Allen's origins, scholars agree that Sarah Allen was born into slavery in 1764 in Virginia's Isle of Wight with a recorded maiden name of Bass, a detail that has led some historians to speculate about her lineage, without empirical results. Allen was eight years old when she arrived as a slave in Philadelphia, but details about her life before the year 1800 seem to have been lost in the folds of history.

Néstor Almendros Biography

Almendros was born in Barcelona, Spain, on October 30, 1930, and was one of three children in his family. His father was a Republican Loyalist and during the Spanish Civil War (1936–39) he fought against the fascist forces of General Francisco Franco (1892–1975).

Angeles Alvariño Biography

Born to Antonio Alvariño Grimaldos, a doctor, and Maria del Carmen Gonzales Diaz-Saavedra de Alvariño on October 3, 1916, in El Ferrol, Spain, Angeles Alvariño showed an interest in the natural sciences at a young age. Encouraged by her parents, she read her father's books on zoology and hoped to one day become a doctor herself.

Rudolfo Alfonso Anaya Biography

Rudolfo Alfonso Anaya was born in Pastura, New Mexico, on October 30, 1937. His mother, Rafaelita (Mares), was from a deeply settled, Catholic farming community called Puerto de Luna, while his father, Martin Anaya, was raised by nomadic herders on the New Mexican llano or eastern plains country.

Queen Anne of Cleves Consort of Henry VIII King Biography

Anne of Cleves was born in Dusseldorf on September 22, 1515, to Johann III and Maria von Geldem. Her father ruled the Duchy of Cleves, a small territory in present day northwestern Germany, until his death in 1538, when Anne's brother, Wilhelm, became Duke.

Eddie Arcaro Biography

Born on February 19, 1916, Arcaro spent his childhood in the Cincinnati metropolitan area, which includes the Kentucky cities of Covington and Newport, just across the Ohio River border between the two states. His parents, Pasquale and Josephine, were Italian immigrants and his father held a number of jobs, including taxi driver and operator of an illegal liquor enterprise during Prohibition.

Martina Arroyo Biography

"She … has a reputation as the wittiest woman in opera," noted Brian Kellow of Opera News. Arroyo's down-to-earth sense of humor, coupled with a diva-sized personality, brought opera to new audiences over her three-decade performing career.

Red Auerbach Biography

The strident Auerbach, among other qualities, was a master strategist, a sharp judge of personnel, and a racial pioneer. "Auerbach was fiercely competitive, sometimes to the point of boorishness," Peter May wrote in the Boston Globe after Auerbach died in October of 2006 from a heart attack at age 89.

Ban Ki-Moon Biography

Ban, whom the United States backed for the new position, became the first Asian to run the international organization since 1971. His supporters cite his administrative and mediation abilities, while critics call him too bland at a time of geopolitical volatility.

Mary Bancroft Biography

Mary Bancroft was the only child of Hugh and Mary Agnes (Cogan) Bancroft, born October 29, 1903, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Hours after the birth, Bancroft's mother, Mary Agnes, an Irish Catholic housewife, suffered a fatal embolism, leaving her husband both a new father and a widow.

Frederic Baraga Biography

The future bishop was born June 29, 1797, as Irenej Friderik Baraga in the town of Dobrnič, Slovenia. At the time, this part of Slovenia—later one of the Yugoslavian federal republics—was known as the Austrian Dukedom of Carniola, and was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

Agatha Barbara Biography

Barbara was born on March 11, 1923, in Żabbar, a town on one of the seven Mediterranean islands that made up Malta and where some exterior walls of houses still bore scars from cannon fire that dated back to Żabbar's uprising against French rule around 1800. The Republic of Malta that Barbara presided over in the 1980s had not yet come into being at the time of her birth: instead it was part of the British Empire and an important naval port for the British Navy since it had passed from French to British rule formally in 1814.

Mrs. Barbauld Biography

Barbauld penned several lengthy poems as well as literary criticism and political commentary, but may be best remembered for the early childhood teaching materials she wrote at a time when she and her husband ran their own school in Suffolk. Her 1778 title, Lessons for Children, and the subsequent Hymns in Prose for Children which appeared three years later, became ubiquitous titles on the bookshelves of English schools and homes for decades to come.

James Barry Biography

The best guesses of Barry's true identity place her as the daughter of Mary Ann Bulkeley (or Bulkley in other sources), named Alice when she was born around 1795. Her mother was the sister of James Barry (1741–1806), an artist who enjoyed professional acclaim during his lifetime as one of Britain's first Romantic painters.

Baruj Benacerraf Biography

Today immunology is one of the hottest topics in medical science, affecting such vital fields as cancer treatment, organ transplantation protocols, and research into autoimmune disease. When Benacerraf entered the field, however, the immune system was much less well understood than it is today.

Elmer Bernstein Biography

Bernstein was born on April 4, 1922, in New York City. He was the only child of Jewish Eastern European immigrant parents, Edward and Selma, and much doted upon.

Art Blakey Biography

"Icall ours the music of survival," Blakey was quoted as saying by Steve Voce of the London Independent. "I'm a Depression baby.

Charles Blondin Biography

Using the stage name Charles Blondin, Jean-Francois Gravelet rightly earned the reputation as the greatest "funambulist" of his time. Upon first glance that term would seem to imply fun, but in fact it indicates activities involving great personal risk.

Kjell Magne Bondevik Biography

Bondevik was born on September 3, 1947, in Molde, a city on Norway's Romsdal peninsula along the Norwegian Sea. He was the nephew of Kjell Bondevik, who once headed the country's Kristelig Folkeparti or Christian People's Party, known by its Norwegian acronym KrF and in English by the letters CPP; the party is also sometimes called the Christian Democratic Party.

Bridget of Sweden Biography

Bridget was born into a wealthy, landowning family in the earliest years of the fourteenth century. Her father, Birger Persson, came from the prominent Finsta family, and served as both governor and lagman ("law-speaker"), or provincial judge, in the province of Uppland.

Art Buchwald Biography

Buchwald's satirical writings, filed first from the Paris offices of the New York Herald Tribune and then from Washington, D.C., entertained several generations of readers who faithfully consumed his columns several times a week. Later in life, Buchwald gained attention for autobiographical writings that showed something of the troubled man behind the comic mask.

Jack Buck Biography

Buck was born in Holyoke, Massachusetts, the third of seven children of Kathleen and Earle Buck. He grew up rooting for the Boston Red Sox and listened to such radio broadcasting greats as Red Barber and Mel Allen.

Mary Bunting-Smith Biography

Bunting-Smith was born to Henry A. and Mary Shotwell Ingraham on July 10, 1910, in Brooklyn, New York.

Olivia Ward Bush-Banks Biography

Olivia Ward Bush Banks had two distinct ethnic identities and strongly identified with both of them. Born at the height of Reconstruction on February 27, 1869, in the Long Island village of Sag Harbor, New York, Olivia Ward was the youngest daughter of Abraham Ward and Eliza Draper.