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Wilkie Collins

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The Cedar Fire Spreads in Southern California

One of 15 fires that ravaged Southern California during October 2003, the Cedar Fire was the largest wildfire in the state's history. Fanned by the Santa Ana Winds, the Cedar Fire burned 280,278 acres (1,134 sq km), destroyed 2,820 buildings, and killed 15 people. The devastation caused by the fire led to criticism of the emergency response and calls for changes in the regulations for firefighting aircraft. How did the fire start?

Feature

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Leptis Magna

Leptis Magna was a prominent city of the Roman Empire whose remains are among the most spectacular and best-preserved Roman ruins in North Africa. Located on the coast of what is now Libya, Leptis Magna was incorporated into the Roman Empire after the fall of Carthage, flourished under the rule of Emperor Septimius Severus—a Leptis Magna native—and eventually became a major trading post. What ancient artifacts found near the site were kept hidden for five years before being revealed in 2005?

Born on a day like today

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Johann Strauss II

Strauss was a world-renowned Austrian composer best known for his waltzes, among them the popular Blue Danube. The son of a composer, he formed an orchestra in 1844 that was immediately successful and rivaled that of his father. Composing more than 400 waltzes, Strauss revolutionized the Viennese waltz, endowing it with new melodic, rhythmic, and orchestral richness. Why did Strauss's brother Eduard destroy a large portion of Johann's original orchestral archives?

Last updated on Saturday, 25th October 2008

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