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History-before-1900

Jonas Buračas

by Simona Makselienė.   Jonas Buračas was born on August 8, 1898 in the village of Sidariai, Šiauliai county. The Buračas family apparently transmitted a creativity gene to all three brothers: Jonas, Balys, and Bronius. Jonas was the painter, Balys a famous photographer (the history of Lithuanian photography is closely ...

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THE RETURN OF CHARLES PANSIRNA – A LEGACY UNCOVERED

By GEDIMINAS INDREIKA. The exhibit at Purdue University’s Robert L. Ringel GalleryWhat Will You Remember When I’m Gone (October 27 to December 6, 2014) offers a rare glimpse into the work of Charles Pansirna, a distinguished Lithuanian-American photographer. The exhibit also displays contemporary photographs by Owen Mundy, though primarily military portraits ...

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A Summer that Offers No Respite

Kristijonas Donelaitis describes how the 18th Century Lithuanian spent his summer By VILIUS RUDRA DUNDZILA. Kristijonas Donelaitis’ epic poem, The Seasons is divided into four parts, each focusing on a different season of the year. Each part describes the joys, toils and foibles of Lithuanian peasant life at that time ...

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The Samogitian Steam-Flyer of Aleksandras Griskevicius

Before the advent of modern aeronautics, men first attempted flight by wearing wings and jumping off towers, then tried hang-gliders, ornithopters, hot-air balloons, and steam-powered, heavier-than-air flying machines—aerodynes. Aleksandras Griškevičius (1809- 1863), a Lithuanian philosopher and inventor, experimented with such early modes of flying and combined their most promising features ...

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The Father of Lithuanian literature Kristijonas Donelaitis

By VILIUS DUNDZILA. Donelaitis was born January 1, 1714, near Gumbinė (German: Gumbinen, Russian: Gusev). At the time, it was part of East Prussia, also known as Lithuania Minor; it is now under Russian administration, which renamed it Kaliningrad Oblast. These lands, beyond the Nemunas River, were for many years Lithuanian ...

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The Tatars and Karaim of Lithuania

The first Lithuanian State, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (GDL), which existed from the thirteenth to the eighteenth century, was basically an emanation of the Lithuanian people, but also a multinational and multicultural state. The Lithuanians concentrated at the core were about one third of its population; the rest were ...

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Seeking Lithuania’s Past in Belarus

On each of our trips to Vilnius, my husband Paul and I make it a point to leave Old Town, where we always base ourselves and spend most of our time, to stroll along Gediminas Prospect in New Town. It’s a one-mile walk along a route lined with cafes and ...

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Lithuania On the Map: Cartography in Lithuania From the Sixteenth to the Eighteenth Century

Cartography (from the Greek Khartes, papyrus, and graphein, to write) is a witrecreated at a later date from his writings. We are aware of several fifteenth-century maps of Central Europe that present a topographic image of Lithuania, but they were compiled by Italian mapmakers from the data given by Ptolemy ...

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Lithuanian Soldiers in Combat in China and the Philippines

Recently, Lithuanian troops have deployed as part of the coalition fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, but this is not the first time Lithuanians have seen combat in Asia. In 1896-1899, they fought in the Philippines, then in 1899-1901, in China. Lithuanians served as volunteers in the US armed forces, but ...

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Captain Cook’s Naturalist, Georg Forster, in Lithuania 1784-1787

Today, Johann Georg Adam Forster is not a household name. This contrasts very much with his own time, when he was the author of a celebrated book about James Cook’s second voyage to the South Pacific, A  Voyage Round the World. As a traveler and naturalist, he made major contributions ...

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