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Beginning in Rome around 600 BC, Latin became the language of the civilized world and remained so for more than two millennia. French, Spanish, Italian, and Romanian are among its progeny and it provides the international vocabulary of law and life science. No known language, including English - itself enriched by Latin words and phrases - has achieved such success and longevity. Tore Janson tells its history from origins to present. Brilliantly conceived and written with the same light touch as his bestselling history of languages, A Natural History of Latin is a masterpiece of adroit synthesis. The author charts the expansion of Latin in the classical world, its renewed importance in the Middle Ages, and its survival into modern times. He shows how spoken and written Latin evolved in different places and its central role in European history and culture. He ends with a concise Latin grammar and lists of Latin words and phrases still in common use. Considered elitist andirrelevant in the second half of the twentieth century and often even banned from schools, Latin is now enjoying a huge revival of interest across Europe, the UK, and the USA. Tore Janson offers persuasive arguments for its value and gives direct access to its fascinating worlds, past and present.
Latin is alive and well. Beginning in Rome around 600 BC Latin became the language of the civilized world and remained so for over two millennia. French, Spanish, Italian, and Romanian are among its progeny and it still provides the international vocabulary of law and life science. No known language, including English - itself enriched by Latin words and phrases - has achieved such success and longevity. Tore Janson tells its history from origins to the present. Brilliantly conceived and written with the same light touch as Speak, his bestselling history of languages, A Natural History of Latin is a masterpiece of adroit synthesis. The author charts the expansion in the classical world, its renewed importance in the Middle Ages, and its survival into modern times. He shows its central role in European history and culture and, by judicious quotation of phrases and texts, describes how spoken and written Latin changed and evolved differently in different places. He ends with a summary of Latin grammar and lists of Latin words and of phrases still in common use. Considered elitist and irrelevant in the second half of the twentieth century and often banned from schools, Latin is now enjoying a huge revival of interest and a renaissance in schools across Europe, the UK, and the USA. Tore Janson offers persuasive arguments for its value and direct access to its fascinating worlds, past and present.
It is difficult to think of a more quintessential symbol of the British countryside than the British Hedgerow, bursting with blackberries, hazelnuts and sloes, and home to oak and ash, field mice and butterflies. But as much as we might dream about foraging for mushrooms or collecting wayside nettles for soup, most of us are unaware of quite how profoundly hedgerows have shaped the history of our landscape and our fellow species. One of Britain's best known naturalists, John Wright introduces us to the natural and cultural history of hedges (as well as ditches, dykes and dry stone walls) - from the arrival of the first settlers in the British Isles to the modern day, when we have finally begun to recognise the importance of these unique ecosystems. His intimate knowledge of the countryside and its inhabitants brings this guide to life, whether discussing the skills and craft of hedge maintenance or the rich variety of animals, plants, algae and fungi who call them home. Informative, practical, entertaining and richly illustrated in colour throughout, A Natural History of the Hedgerow is a book to stuff into your pocket for country walks in every season, or to savour in winter before a roaring fire.
Does not discuss the Semitic languages.
A Natural History of the New World traces the evolution of plant ecosystems, beginning in the Late Cretaceous period and ending in the present, charting their responses to changes in geology and climate.
A beautifully illustrated, engrossing celebration of the piano, and the composers and performers who have made it their own. Stuart Isacoff - pianist, critic and teacher - explores the history and evolution of the piano: how its sound provides the basis for emotional expression and individual style, why it has so powerfully entertained generation upon generation of listeners. A Natural History of the Piano distills a lifetime of research and passion into one brilliant narrative. We witness Mozart unveiling his monumental concertos in Vienna's coffeehouses, using a special piano with one keyboard for the hands and another for the feet; European virtuoso Henri Herz entertaining rowdy miners during the California gold rush; Beethoven at his piano, conjuring healing angels to console a grieving mother who had lost her child; Liszt fainting in the arms of a page turner to spark an entire hall into hysterics Ranging from the groundbreaking music of Mozart, Beethoven, Liszt and Debussy to the breathtaking techniques of Glenn Gould, Oscar Peterson, Arthur Rubinstein and Van Cliburn, Isacoff delineates how classical music and jazz influenced each other as the uniquely American art form progressed from ragtime, novelty, boogie, bebop, and beyond, through Scott Joplin, Fats Waller, Duke Ellington, Herbie Hancock and Bill Charlap. Here is the instrument in all its complexity and beauty. We learn of the incredible craftsmanship of a modern Steinway, the peculiarity of specialty pianos built for the Victorian household, the continuing innovation in keyboards including electronic ones. And most of all, we hear the music of the masters, from centuries ago and in our own age, as brilliantly evoked as its most recent performance. This wide-ranging volume is an essential for music lovers, pianists, and the armchair musician.

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