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Last Build Date: Sun, 17 Dec 2017 05:00:00 GMT

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Sydney Opera House

Sun, 17 Dec 2017 05:00:00 GMT

(image) Distinguished by its roof of white concrete "shells," Australia's Sydney Opera House is one of the world's most distinctive and famous 20th-century buildings. Danish architect Jørn Utzon's design, which was among the first to use computers for structural analysis, was chosen in 1957 from among 233 competition entries from 32 countries. The Opera House was formally completed in 1973 at a cost of $102 million—10 years late and $95 million over budget. Why did Utzon resign from the project in 1966? Discuss



The Antonine Plague

Sat, 16 Dec 2017 05:00:00 GMT

(image) Lasting from 165 to 180 CE, the Antonine Plague was a pandemic, either of smallpox or measles, brought to the Roman Empire by troops returning from campaigns in the Near East. The epidemic killed off entire towns and claimed the lives of two Roman emperors—Lucius Verus and his co-regent Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, whose family name was given to the plague. It resurged again nine years later and had drastic social and political effects throughout the empire. What was its estimated death toll?



Moai

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 05:00:00 GMT

(image) Moai are the monolithic human stone sculptures of Easter Island. The massive statutes are generally thought to be representations of the deified ancestors of the Rapanui people, who likely produced them between 1250 and 1500 CE. Carved from soft volcanic tufa, the statues range from 10 to 40 feet (3 to 12 meters) high, with some weighing more than 80 tons. Nearly half are still at the main moai quarry, but hundreds were transported and set on platforms around the island. How were they moved?