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Hatfield House in Hertfordshire

Hatfield House in Hertfordshire

[caption id="attachment_27862" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © flickr.com - Allan Engelhardt/cc-by-sa-2.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Hatfield House is a country house set in a large park, the Great Park, on the eastern side of the town of Hatfield, Hertfordshire, England. The present Jacobean house, a leading example of the prodigy house, was built in 1611 by Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury and Chief Minister to King James I and has been the home of the Cecil family ever since. It is a prime example of Jacobean architectu...

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The Rock-Hewn Churches of Lalibela

The Rock-Hewn Churches of Lalibela

[caption id="attachment_223523" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Bete Giyorgis © Bernard Gagnon/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Rock-hewn Churches of Lalibela are monolithic churches located in the Western Ethiopian Highlands near the town of Lalibela, named after the late-12th and early-13th century King Gebre Mesqel Lalibela of the Zagwe Dynasty, who commissioned the massive building project of 11 rock-hewn churches to recreate the holy city of Jerusalem in his own kingdom. The site remains in use by the Ethiopian ...

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Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore

Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore

[caption id="attachment_186242" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Gilman Hall © Daderot[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Johns Hopkins University is an American private research university in Baltimore, Maryland. Founded in 1876, the university was named for its first benefactor, the American entrepreneur, abolitionist, and philanthropist Johns Hopkins. His $7 million bequest (~$150 million in 2017 dollars)—of which half financed the establishment of Johns Hopkins Hospital—was the largest philanthropic gift in the history of the Un...

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Theme Week Rome - Villa Borghese, Villa Massimo and Villa Medici

Theme Week Rome - Villa Borghese, Villa Massimo and Villa Medici

[caption id="attachment_150695" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Galleria Borghese © Alessio Damato[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]VILLA BORGHESEVilla Borghese is a large landscape garden in the naturalistic English manner in Rome, containing a number of buildings, museums (see Galleria Borghese) and attractions. It is the second largest public park in Rome (80 hectares or 148 acres) after that of the Villa Doria Pamphili. The gardens were developed for the Villa Borghese Pinciana ("Borghese villa on the Pincian Hill"), built by the...

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Ocean City in New Jersey

Ocean City in New Jersey

[caption id="attachment_153641" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Rising sun over Ocean City © Connor Kurtz[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Ocean City is a city in Cape May County in New Jersey. It is the county's largest city by area. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city's population was 11,701. In summer months, with an influx of tourists and second homeowners, there are estimated to be 115,000 to 130,000 within the city's borders. Known as a family-oriented seaside resort, Ocean City has prohibited the sale of alco...

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Theme Week Sicily

Theme Week Sicily

[caption id="attachment_153571" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Lipari Panorama © flickr.com - Leandro Neumann Ciuffo/cc-by-2.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea; along with surrounding minor islands, it constitutes an autonomous region of Italy, and it is officially referred to as Regione Siciliana (Sicilian Region). Sicily is located in the central Mediterranean. It extends from the tip of the Apennine peninsula, from which it is separated only by the narrow Strait of Messina, to...

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Arkhangelsk in northern Russia

Arkhangelsk in northern Russia

[caption id="attachment_151350" align="aligncenter" width="586"] Arkhangelsk © Ларин Андрей/cc-by-sa-2.5[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Arkhangelsk, sometimes Archangel, is a city and the administrative center of Arkhangelsk Oblast, in the north of Russia. It lies on both banks of the Northern Dvina River near its exit into the White Sea. The city spreads for over 40 kilometers (25 mi) along the banks of the river and numerous islands of its delta. Arkhangelsk was the chief seaport of medieval Russia until 1703. A 1,133-k...

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Breda in the south of Holland

Breda in the south of Holland

[caption id="attachment_159784" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Great church seen from Grote Markt square © ClaudeJacques[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Breda is a municipality and a city in the southern part of the Netherlands. The name Breda derived from brede Aa ('wide Aa') and refers to the confluence of the rivers Mark and Aa. As a fortified city, the city was of strategic military and political significance. Although a direct Fiefdom of the Holy Roman Emperor, the city obtained a municipal charter; the acquisition of Breda, t...

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Theme Week Cornwall - Port Isaac

Theme Week Cornwall - Port Isaac

[caption id="attachment_153193" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Sbeech[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Port Isaac is a small and picturesque fishing village on the Atlantic Coast of north Cornwall. The nearest towns are Wadebridge and Camelford, both ten miles away. Port Gaverne, commonly mistaken to be part of Port Isaac, is a nearby hamlet that has its own history. The meaning of the Cornish name is "corn port", indicating a trade in corn from the arable inland district. Since the 1980s the village has served as backdrop to vari...

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Tortuga in the Caribbean

Tortuga in the Caribbean

[caption id="attachment_153046" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Tortuga Island © NASA[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Tortuga (French: Île de la Tortue, Englisch: Turtle Island) is a Caribbean island that forms part of Haiti, off the northwest coast of Hispaniola. It constitutes the commune of Île de la Tortue in the Port-de-Paix arrondissement of the Nord-Ouest Department of Haiti. Tortuga is 180 km² (69 mi²) in size and has a population of 30,000. In the 17th century, Tortuga was a major centre of Caribbean piracy. Its tourist...

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