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Famous figures

  • Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States and remains one of the most important figures in American history. Known in particular for leading the Union to victory in the American Civil War and ending slavery through the Emancipation Proclamation, this iconic leader oversaw a period of profound social change, economic modernization and territorial expansion, and paved the...
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  • Adolf Hitler, the leader of the Nazi Party and Führer of Nazi Germany from 1934 to 1945, is widely viewed as one of the most evil men in history. Driven by rabid anti-Semitism and a belief in the inherent superiority of the Aryan race, Hitler was directly responsible for the outbreak of the Second World War and masterminded the Holocaust,...
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  • Albert Einstein was a theoretical physicist who is now famous across the world as one of the greatest scientists of all time. Known in particular for his development of the theories of general relativity and special relativity, Einstein completely shattered previously held conceptions about the universe and was also renowned for his committed political stances. In just 50 minutes, you...
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  • Amerigo Vespucci was a pioneering navigator and popular chronicler, as well as the man who gave the American continent its name. He explored a long stretch of the South American coastline, and was the first person to realize that this part of the world was not an unknown region of Asia, but a completely separate continent. In particular, he discovered...
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  • In 1492, three ships captained by the Genoese explorer Christopher Columbus arrived in the New World. Although the Viking explorer Leif Eriksson had first discovered the Americas almost 500 years earlier, Columbus and his men were the first to establish sustained contact with the continent's indigenous populations. While his expedition brought immense wealth to the Spanish Crown and made it...
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  • The work of Nicolaus Copernicus marked a major turning point in the history of astronomy. It was previously believed that the Earth was stationary in the middle of a finite universe, as described in the works of Aristotle and Ptolemy, but this all changed with the heliocentric model put forward by Copernicus. According to this new theory, the sun was...
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  • In 1859, Charles Darwin’s seminal book On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection was published and presented the groundbreaking idea that all species on Earth are the result of a slow process of evolution and continue to evolve as part of the struggle now commonly known as the survival of the fittest. Darwin’s conclusions were the fruit...
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  • Dwight David Eisenhower was the 34th President of the United States and a member of the Republican Party. He was a hero of the Second World War and a very important figure in the liberation of Europe. He was also regarded as a great diplomat and, when he was elected, he became the first Republican president in 20 years.  In...
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  • The conquistador Francisco Pizarro was one of the most important figures of Spanish colonization. His subjugation of the Inca Empire allowed him to seize power in the capital, Cuzco, and establish a number of new towns on behalf of the Spanish Crown, bringing a huge amount of wealth to Spain and helping it to become one of the most powerful countries...
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  • Gandhi

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    Mahatma Gandhi was one of the emblematic figures of Indian independence and remains an icon of nonviolent resistance. Through actions such as the Salt March and his celebrated Quit India speech, Gandhi helped his compatriots to throw off the yoke of British colonialism and become an independent nation. His peaceful protests brought him renown all over the world and inspired many...
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  • George Washington was the 1st President of the United States and one of the Founding Fathers, making him undoubtedly one of the greatest figures in American history. He took part in the drafting of the Declaration of Independence on 4 July 1776 and was appointed Commander in Chief of the Continental Army, which he organized and led to victory against the...
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  • Georges Lemaître was a Belgian priest, astronomer and professor of physics. Lemaître is known most of all for developing the Big Bang theory, which is now widely accepted and has led to the creation of a new field of research: cosmology. He proposed that the universe expanded from a single point, which he called the "Primeval Atom". Although part of...
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