Leo Tolstoy, Writer.

LeoTolstoy1Leo Tolstoy the renowned and celebrated Russian writer and philosopher was born on September 9th, 1828 in Yasnaya Polyana, the family estate in the Tula region of Russia.
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Tolstoy’s epic masterpiece War and Peace is one of the most widely acclaimed novels in the world and considered as one of the most important works of literature.
It tells of the events surrounding France’s 1812 invasion of Russia and documents life in the Tsarist society of the Napoleonic years through the eyes of five Russian upper class families.
His other masterpiece Anna Karenina is a sensational romantic tragedy which follows the life of Anna Karenina when she has a life-changing affair with the dashing Count Alexei Vronsky set in the 19th century Russian high society.
His other notable works include: The Resurrection, Master and Man, Family Happiness, A confession along with a variety of short stories, plays and essays.
Tolstoy breathed his last on 20th November 1910 at age of 82 in Astapovo, Russian Empire.
via Zee News.

“Wondrous Art by Pranckevicius”.

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I was born in Lithuania and gained basic artistic knowledge at the academy of fine arts, fresco specialty.
My name is Gediminas Pranckevicius I am working as a freelance illustrator, concept artist.
This is my art. You are my guest.
Welcome!
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More info: gedomenas.com
See more Images via I Create For People From Planet Earth | Bored Panda.

“Abandoned Places”.

The French photographer David de Rueda travels the world in search of unusual places.
He is captivated by the aesthetic beauty of derelict buildings and teamed up with Nikon to create a striking photo project based on abandoned places, in Europe.
Photos by David de Rueda/Nikon/Rex Shutterstock.

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An abandoned ferris wheel in Pripyat, the town that used to house many of the workers at the Chernobyl nuclear plant.
Only 3km from the site of the disaster, Pripyat was evacuated 36 hours after the explosion.

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Abandoned locomotives and carriages in Budapest.
The derelict engine shed is located in the middle of a working train depot
See more images via Abandoned places – in pictures | Art and design | The Guardian

“Sunset on Lake Baikal.”

1200Image Credit: Photograph by Sergey Pesterev, 
Special Mention, Land, Sea and Sky.
Sunset on Lake Baikal in Russia, with impressive high ice ridges in the foreground.
Source: Travel Photographer of the Year 2016: the winners – in pictures | Travel | The Guardian

“Walking in the Rain”.

St. Petersburg-based Russian photographer Gordeev captures delicate cityscape scenes by taking his photos in the rain.

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Flowing rain drops blur the colors and diffuse light, resulting in photos that have a strong resemblance to Impressionist oil paintings.

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Though the series mostly features Russia’s St. Petersburg and its widely recognized landmarks.

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Nothing gloomy about the rain here, just pure Russian romance!
See more images via Rainy Russian Street Photography Looks Like Oil Paintings | Bored Panda

“Killing Rasputin.”

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Photograph: Laski Diffusion/Getty Images
by Kathryn Harkup,
The end of December, 2016 marked the 100th anniversary of the death of Rasputin, the “mad monk of Russia”, or “lover of the Russian queen” if you believe the Boney M song, though you probably shouldn’t.
While the song is undoubtedly a floor-filler, unsurprisingly it is not exactly a reliable historical account of Rasputin’s life.
Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin, a mystic and spiritual healer born in Pokrovskoe in Siberia, wielded huge influence over the Russian royal family, particularly Alexandra, the Tsarina, who looked to the spiritual healer to cure her haemophiliac son, Alexei.
The life of Rasputin was certainly pretty strange but it is the stories surrounding his death that are the strangest of all.
The death of Rasputin – December, 1916.
What is known is that one evening Rasputin went to the Yusupov Palace in St Petersburg at the invitation of Prince Felix Yusupov. Rasputin’s dead body was recovered from the frozen Neva River days later.
No one is completely sure what happened in between these two events.The most well-known account of the events comes from Prince Yusupov himself in his memoirs Lost Splendour. This autobiography reads more like a boy’s own adventure story than a reliable historical document and many doubt the authenticity of what he wrote.
According to Yusupov, when Rasputin arrived at the palace he was taken down to the cellar where he was given cake and madeira wine. Upstairs, a gramophone played Yankee Doodle Dandy to fool the monk in to believing there was a party in full swing.
Yusupov and his accomplices had planned things carefully. The cakes offered to Rasputin had been laced with enough potassium cyanide to slay a monastery full of monks. But Rasputin just kept eating them.
Incredulous at the monk’s survival, Prince Yusupov poured madeira into a cyanide-laced wine glass and handed it to Rasputin. Instead of collapsing into unconsciousness within seconds, as would be expected from a massive dose of cyanide, Rasputin continued to sip the wine like a connoisseur.
A second lethal glass disappeared into the monk’s mouth with little apparent effect other than some difficulty swallowing. Asked if he was feeling unwell he replied “Yes, my head is heavy and I’ve a burning sensation in my stomach.”
A third glass of tainted wine only seemed to revive him. Having ingested their whole stock of cyanide, the group of assassins were somewhat at a loss as to what to do next.
So they shot him.
Read on via Poisoned, shot and beaten: why cyanide alone may have failed to kill Rasputin | Science | The Guardian