Charles Dickens. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

Charles Dickens biography:


Charles Dickens (1812-1870), novelist, was born on 7 February 1812 in Portsmouth, England, son of John Dickens, a clerk in the Navy Pay Office, and his wife Elizabeth, née Barrow. Dickens received intermittent schooling and indifferent care from his parents who were once obliged to take up residence in Marshalsea prison for debt. First apprenticed to the law, he began writing unpaid pieces for popular journals. Sketches by ‘Boz’, Dickens’s pseudonym, were published in two volumes in 1836 and The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club in 1837. Sam Weller and Mr Pickwick created a world-wide furore and Dickens’s imitators were legion. Pickwick parties were held as far apart as Canada and Kangaroo Island, whilst the first pirated edition of Pickwick Papers was printed by Henry Dowling of Tasmania in 1838.

Fame was assured for Dickens with the publication of Oliver Twist in 1838 and Nicholas Nickleby in 1839. As novelist, journalist, public speaker and social critic, his popularity was universal and the world of his novels changed contemporary attitudes. At first aware of Australia only as a place of penal servitude, Dickens in Pickwick Papers has the convict, John Edmunds, transported and sent up country as a shepherd. The infamous Mr Squeers in Nicholas Nickleby is similarly sent to the colony. Always fascinated by crime, Dickens acquired knowledge of Norfolk Island from his friend Alexander Maconochie. He never forgot Australia’s prison origins and in his last completed novel, Our Mutual Friend (1865), Jenny Wren threatens her delinquent father with transportation. Similarly in David Copperfield, Mr Littimer and Uriah Heep are dispatched to Australia to complete their sentences.

In 1849 Dickens was writing David Copperfield and faced with the problem of a satisfactory disposition of Micawber and his family. He had already met Samuel Sidney, who was advocating Australia as a home for working class emigrants, and Mrs Caroline Chisholm through a common friend, Sidney Herbert. The last chapters of David Copperfield embodied material from Sidney’s Australian Hand-Book (1848) and Wilkins Micawber duly became the best known emigrant to Port Middlebay (Melbourne) where he attained affluence and the office of magistrate. Micawber was accompanied by little Em’ly, Peggotty, Martha Endell and Mrs Gummidge. The downtrodden schoolmaster, Mr Mell, founded an academy for boys at Port Middlebay and his fiddling and oratory delighted colonial society.

Household Words, Dickens’s journal, began publication in 1850 and the first article was an approving exposition of Mrs Chisholm’s Family Colonization Loan Society. Later articles and stories in that year were written by Samuel Sidney. The discovery of gold lent feasibility to Micawber’s success and mitigated the country’s reputation as a gaol. In Great Expectations (1861) Dickens created Magwitch, the convict who amassed wealth in New South Wales and so produced an English gentleman.

Dickens had contemplated a lecture tour of Australia in 1862 and intended to write a travel book, ‘The Uncommercial Traveller Upside Down’, but the tour was abandoned. In Australia, as in England, his novels were adapted as stage plays; with Our Emily, Old Curiosity Shop and Cricket on the Hearth as perennial favourites. The articles from Household Words and All the Year Round were widely published in the Australian press and helped to impose Dickens’s own view of Australia on Australian life and society.

Dickens died on 9 June 1870. Of his surviving sons, Alfred D’Orsay Tennyson (b.1845), had migrated to Australia in 1865. He bought a partnership in a stock and station agency in Hamilton, Victoria, but after his wife died left in 1882 to join the Melbourne branch of his brother’s agency. After a lecture tour he died in the United States in 1912. The youngest son, Edward Bulwer Lytton (b.1852), went to Australia in 1869 and settled at Wilcannia where he became manager of Momba station; in 1880 he married Constance Desailly. He opened a stock and station agency, was elected to the local council and bought a share in Yanda station near Bourke. He lost heavily from bad seasons and in 1886 he became a civil servant. He represented Wilcannia in the New South Wales Legislative Assembly in 1889-94. He died on 23 January 1902 at Moree and was buried by a Wesleyan minister.



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J. R. R. Tolkien. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

J.R. R. Tolkien biography:

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born on January 3, 1892, the son of English-born parents in Bloemfontein, in the Orange Free State of South Africa, where his father worked as a bank manager. To escape the heat and dust of southern Africa and to better guard the delicate health of Ronald (as he was called), Tolkien’s mother moved back to a small English village with him and his younger brother when they were very young boys. Tolkien would later use this village as a model for one of the locales in his novels. Within a year of this move their father, Arthur Tolkien, died in Bloemfontein, and a few years later the boys’ mother died as well.

The Tolkien boys lodged at several homes from 1905 until 1911, when Ronald entered Exeter College, Oxford. Tolkien received a bachelor’s degree from Oxford in 1915 and a master’s degree in 1919. During this time he married his longtime sweetheart, Edith Bratt, and served for a short time on the Western Front with the Lancashire Fusiliers (a regiment in the British army that used an older-style musket) during World War I (1914–18), when Germany led forces against much of Europe and America).

Begins writing

In 1917, Tolkien was in England recovering from «trench fever,» a widespread disease transmitted through fleas and other bugs in battlefield trenches. While bedridden Tolkien began writing «The Book of Lost Tales,» which eventually became The Silmarillion (1977) and laid the groundwork for his stories about Middle Earth, the fictional world where Tolkien’s work takes place.

After the war Tolkien returned to Oxford, where he joined the staff of the Oxford English Dictionary and began work as a freelance tutor. In 1920 he was appointed Reader in English Language at Leeds University. The following year, having returned to Oxford as Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon, Tolkien became friends with the novelist C. S. Lewis (1898–1963). They shared an intense enthusiasm for the myths, sagas, and languages of northern Europe, and to better enhance those interests, both attended meetings of the «Coalbiters,» an Oxford club, founded by Tolkien, at which Icelandic sagas were read aloud.

During the rest of Tolkien’s years at Oxford—twenty as Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon, fourteen as Merton Professor of English Language and Literature—Tolkien published several well-received short studies and translations. Notable among these are his essays «Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics» (1936), «Chaucer as a Philologist [a person who studies language as it relates to culture]: The Reeve’s Tale» (1934), and «On Fairy-Stories»(1947); his scholarly edition of Ancrene Wisse (1962); and his translations of three medieval poems: «Sir Gawain and the Green Knight,» «Pearl,» and «Sir Orfeo» (1975).

The Hobbit

As a writer of imaginative literature, though, Tolkien is best known for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, tales which were formed during his years attending meetings of the «Inklings,» an informal gathering of like-minded friends and writers, that began after the Coalbiters dissolved. The Inklings, which was formed during the late 1930s and lasted until the late 1940s, was a weekly meeting held in Lewis’s sitting room at Magdalen College, at which works-in-progress were read aloud and discussed and critiqued by the attendees. Inklings, Lewis urged Tolkien to publish The Hobbit, which appeared in 1937.

Tolkien retired from his professorship in 1959. While the unauthorized publication of an American edition of The Lord of the Rings in 1965 angered him, it also made him a widely admired cult figure in the United States, especially among high school and college students. Uncomfortable with this status, he and his wife lived quietly in Bournemouth for several years, until Edith’s death in 1971. In the remaining two years of his life, Tolkien returned to Oxford, where he was made an honorary fellow of Merton College and awarded a doctorate of letters. He was at the height of his fame as a scholarly and imaginative writer when he died in 1973, though critical study of his fiction continues and has increased in the years since.

The world of Middle Earth

Tolkien, a devoted Roman Catholic throughout his life, began creating his own languages and mythologies at an early age and later wrote Christian-inspired stories and poems to provide them with a narrative framework. Based on bedtime stories Tolkien had created for his children, The Hobbit concerns the efforts of a hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, to recover a treasure stolen by a dragon. During the course of his mission, Baggins discovers a magical ring which, among other powers, can render its bearer invisible. The ability to disappear helps Bilbo fulfill his quest; however, the ring’s less obvious powers prompt the evil Sauron, Dark Lord of Mordor, to seek it. The hobbits’ attempt to destroy the ring, thereby denying Sauron unlimited power, is the focal point of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, which consists of the novels The Fellowship of the Ring (1954), The Two Towers (1954), and The Return of the King (1955). In these books Tolkien rejects such traditional heroic qualities as strength and size, stressing instead the capacity of even the humblest creatures to win against evil.

Throughout Tolkien’s career he composed histories, genealogies (family histories), maps, glossaries, poems, and songs to supplement his vision of Middle Earth. Among the many works published during his lifetime were a volume of poems, The Adventures of Tom Bombadil and Other Verses from the Red Book (1962), and a fantasy novel, Smith of Wootton Major (1967). Though many of his stories about Middle Earth remained incomplete at the time of Tolkien’s death, his son, Christopher, rescued the manuscripts from his father’s collections, edited them, and published them. One of these works, The Silmarillion, takes place before the time of The Hobbit and tells the tale of the first age of Holy Ones (earliest spirits) and their offspring.

Nonetheless, Tolkien implies, to take The Lord of the Rings too seriously might be a mistake. He once stated that fairy stories in itself should be taken as a truth, not always symbolic of something else. He went on to say, «but first of all [the story] must succeed just as a tale, excite, please, and even on occasion move, and within its own imagined world be accorded literary belief. To succeed in that was my primary object.»

Nearly thirty years after his death, the popularity of Tolkien’s work has hardly slowed. In 2001 The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring was released as a major motion picture. The magic of Tolkien’s world won over both the critics and public alike as the movie was nominated in thirteen categories, including Best Picture, at the Academy Awards; it won four awards. Two more films are scheduled for release by the end of 2003.



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George Washington. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

George Washington


George Washington (1732-1799) was the first President of the United States of America. He served as President from April 30, 1789, until March 4, 1797 (two terms). His Vice-President was John Adams (1735-1826), who was later voted the second President of the USA.

Early Life:
George Washington was born on February 22, 1732, in Westmoreland County, Virginia. Washington’s father died when George was 11 years old. He had very little formal schooling, but taught himself to be an expert woodsman, surveyor (a person who determines the boundaries and area of tracts of land), and mapmaker. Washington grew to be over 6 feet tall — this was very rare in Colonial times.


French and Indian War:
As a young man, Washington joined the Virginia militia. He and six men traveled 500 miles north to the shores of Lake Erie to deliver a message to the French — the French were ordered to stop settling land that was claimed by the British. This land dispute led to a battle in which Washington and 160 men lost to the French; this was the beginning of the French and Indian War (the British and the Colonists fought the French and some Indian tribes). After many heroic battles, Washington became a colonel and the leader of Virginia’s militia. The British eventually won the French and Indian War.


Washington married Martha Custis (born June 2, 1731 – died May 22, 1802) in 1759. Martha was a rich widow who had two children, Martha «Patsy» and John «Jacky.» Their home in Virginia was called Mt. Vernon. George and Martha did not have children together.

A Start in Politics:
In 1758, Washington was elected to the House of Burgesses in Virginia (the local governing body of Virginia).

Revolutionary War:
In order to pay for the expensive French and Indian War, the British taxed the Colonists (the Stamp Tax), angering them. In Boston, the Colonists revolted, dumping precious tea into Boston Harbor (this event is called the Boston Tea Party).


In 1775, Washington was chosen as the Commander in Chief of the Colonial Army. In 1776, the Colonists declared their independence from the British. General Washington led ragtag Patriot troops who were poorly trained, barely paid, badly equipped, and outnumbered by the British. Patriot women, like Molly «Pitcher,» often helped on the battlefields, carrying pitchers of water to cool down the cannons so they could be re-fired, and also nursing the wounded.

Due to the brilliant planning of George Washington and some help from the French late in the War, the British were defeated in 1781 after many bloody battles. The Americans were now independent of the British.


The US Constitution:
After independence, the Americans were governed under the Articles of Confederation (adopted by the Patriots in 1777), but the country struggled.

1787, Washington presided over the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, during which the US Constitution was written.

The US Constitution outlined a representative government with checks and balances among three branches of government : the Executive (the President), the Legislative Branch (law makers), and the Judicial Branch (judges and courts). The Constitution was ratified in 1788 — it went into effect in 1789. The next step was to set up this new, revolutionary form of government.


President of the US:
Washington was unanimously elected President of the United States of America by electors in early 1789 and again in 1792. Both votes were unanimous. John Adams was his vice-president. Washington’s first inauguration took place in New York City, New York (which was the first capital of the USA, from 1789 to 1790). Washington’s second inauguration took place in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (it was the capital from 1790 to 1800). Washington refused a third Presidential term, saying in his farewell speech that a longer rule would give one man too much power.


During Washington’s presidency, the Bill of Rights (the first 10 amendments to the US Constitution) was adopted (in 1791). The Bill of Rights guarantees the rights of the American people. In Washington’s cabinet were Thomas Jefferson (Secretary of State), Alexander Hamilton (Secretary of Treasury), Henry Knox (Secretary of War), and Edmund Randolph (Attorney General).

Washington wore false teeth made from hippopotamus ivory.

Washington died on December 14, 1799, at his home, Mt. Vernon, located in Fairfax County, Virginia. After his death, the nation’s capital was moved from Philadelphia to a location on the border of Virginia and Maryland near Washington’s home, and was named Washington, District of Columbia in his honor.



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Franklin D. Roosevelt. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was the 32nd President of the United States.

Roosevelt led the United States through the Great Depression and World War II

Born on January 30, 1882, in Hyde Park, New York.

Roosevelt died in Georgia in 1945.

His family was wealthy. The family lived at Springwood, their estate in the Hudson River Valley in New York State. While growing up, Franklin Roosevelt was surrounded by privilege and a sense of self-importance.

Franklin Roosevelt entered Harvard University, determined to make something of himself.

During his last year at Harvard, he became engaged to Eleanor Roosevelt, his fifth cousin. They married on March 17, 1905.

Franklin D. Roosevelt and wife

In 1910, at age 28, Roosevelt was invited to run for the New York state senate. Breaking from family tradition, he ran as a Democrat in a district that had voted Republican for the past 32 years.

Franklin Roosevelt was energetic and an efficient administrator. He specialized in business operations, working with Congress to get budgets approved and systems modernized, and he founded the U.S. Naval Reserve.

In 1914, Franklin Roosevelt, decided to run for the U.S. Senate seat for New York. Roosevelt was soundly defeated in the primary election and learned a valuable lesson that national stature could not defeat a well-organized local political organization.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

With his political career thriving, Franklin D. Roosevelt accepted the nomination for vice president—as James M. Cox’s running mate—at the 1920 Democratic Convention.

While vacationing at Campobello Island, New Brunswick, Canada, he was diagnosed as having contracted polio. For a time, Franklin Roosevelt was resigned to being a victim of polio, believing his political career to be over. But Eleanor Roosevelt and political confidante Louis Howe encouraged him to continue on.


Al Smith urged Franklin Roosevelt to run for governor of New York, in 1928. Roosevelt was narrowly elected, and the victory gave him confidence that his political star was rising.

By 1930, Republicans were being blamed for the Great Depression and Franklin Roosevelt sensed opportunity. He began his run for the presidency, calling for government intervention in the economy to provide relief, recovery and reform. His upbeat, positive approach and personal charm helped him defeat Republican incumbent Herbert Hoover in November 1932.

By 1936, the economy showed signs of improvement.

Franklin D. Roosevelt 04

However, as military conflicts emerged in Asia and Europe, Roosevelt sought ways to assist China in its war with Japan and declared France and Great Britain were America’s «first line of defense» against Nazi Germany.

Early in 1940, Roosevelt had not publically announced that he would run for an unprecedented third term as president. But privately, with Germany’s victories in Europe and Japan’s growing dominance in Asia, he felt that only he had the experience and skills to lead America in such trying times.


During World War II, Franklin Roosevelt was a commander in chief who worked with and sometimes around his military advisors. He helped develop a strategy for defeating Germany in Europe through a series of invasions, first in North Africa in November 1942, then Sicily and Italy in 1943, followed by the D-Day invasion of Europe in 1944.

The stress of war, however, began to take its toll on Franklin Roosevelt. In March 1944, hospital tests indicated he had atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease and congestive heart failure.

Roosevelt Stalin Churchill

In February 1945, Franklin Roosevelt attended the Yalta Conference with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet General Secretary Joseph Stalin to discuss post-war reorganization.

On the afternoon of April, 12, 1945, Roosevelt suffered a massive cerebral hemorrhage and died.

franklin-delano-roosevelt 01


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Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.Woody Allen.

Woody Allen.

Woody Allen

Woody Allen is an American screenwriter, director, actor, comedian, author, playwright, and musician.

Allen was born in The Bronx and raised in Brooklyn, NY, the son of Nettie, a bookkeeper at her family’s delicatessen, and Martin Konigsberg , a jewelry engraver and waiter.

His childhood was not particularly happy: his parents did not get along, and he had a rocky relationship with his stern, temperamental mother.

During that time, he lived in an apartment at 968 East 14th Street.

He impressed students with his extraordinary talent at card and magic tricks.

He began to call himself Woody Allen.At the age of 17, he legally changed his name to Heywood Allen.

Woody Allen

After high school, he attended New York University, where he studied communication and film. He later briefly attended City College of New York and soon flunked out. Later, he learned via self-study rather than the classroom. He eventually taught at The New School. He also studied with writing teacher Lajos Egri.

He became a full-time writer for humorist Herb Shriner, initially earning $75 a week. At the age of 19, he started writing scripts for The Ed Sullivan Show, The Tonight Show, specials for Sid Caesar post-Caesar’s Hour (1954–1957), and other television shows.

In 1961, he started a new career as a stand-up comedian, debuting in a Greenwich Village club called the Duplex.

Woody Allen

Allen started writing short stories and cartoon captions for magazines such as The New Yorker; he was inspired by the tradition of four prominent New Yorker‘s humoristsAllen is also an accomplished author, having published four collections of his short pieces and plays.

He also became a successful Broadway playwright and wrote Don’t Drink the Water in 1966.

His first movie was the Charles K. Feldman production What’s New Pussycat? in 1965, for which he wrote the initial screenplay.Allen directed, starred in, and wrote Take the Money and Run in 1969, which received positive reviews. In 1972, he wrote and starred in the film version of Play It Again, Sam, which was directed by Herbert Ross and co-starred Diane Keaton. In 1976, he starred in The Front.

Woody Allen

Allen’s 1980s films, even the comedies, have somber and philosophical undertones, with their influences being the works of European directors, specifically Ingmar Bergman and Federico Fellini.

Allen combined tragic and comic elements in such films as Hannah and Her Sisters and Crimes and Misdemeanors.

For many years, Allen wanted to make a film about the origins of jazz in New Orleans.

Allen has had three wives: Harlene Rosen (1954–1959), Louise Lasser (1966–1969) and his present marriage to Soon-Yi Previn (1997–present). Though Allen had a 10-year romantic relationship with actress Mia Farrow, the two were never married. Allen also had romantic relationships with Diane Keaton and Stacey Nelkin.

Woody Allen


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Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés. Margaret Tudor. QUEEN OF SCOTS

Margaret Tudor. QUEEN OF SCOTS:

Margaret Tudor

Margaret Tudor was the daughter of Henry VII of England and Elizabeth of York, and the elder sister of Henry VIII.

Margaret Tudor lived from 29 November 1489 to 18 October 1541.

it was her wedding that led to the unification of the Crowns of England and Scotland in 1603 by James VI/I, the son of two of Margaret Tudor’s grandchildren.

It has been said that fate intended Margaret to be Queen of Scots.

On 24 January 1502, Scotland and England concluded the Treaty of Perpetual Peace, between them, to be guaranteed by the parallel marriage treaty agreed between James and Margaret. The marriage took place on 8 August 1503 at Holyrood Abbey in Edinburgh. After three childred died in infancy, their first surviving son, James, was born in April 1512, and their second, Alexander, Earl of Ross was born in April 1514.

But by then Margaret was a widow and her first son was already James V of Scotland. In 1509 Henry VII of England had been succeeded by Margaret’s brother, Henry VIII, whose aggressive stance towards France led inevitably to war. Scotland and France had a long-standing mutual assistance treaty, the Auld Alliance, so in 1513, James IV left Margaret, bitterly opposed to the war, at Linlithgow Palace, and led a Scottish army south into England. The outcome, on 9 September 1513, was the worst military disaster in Scottish history, the Battle of Flodden, in which an entire generation of Scottish nobility, including James IV, was wiped out. James IV’s will appointed Margaret as Regent for the young James V unless she remarried, and the Privy Council reluctantly agreed: so at the age of 24, Margaret found herself a pregnant, widowed young mother, trying to rule a Scotland reeling in the aftermath of a crushing defeat at the hands of her brother’s English army.

margaret tudor-2

By the middle of 1514, Margaret had just about gained control of the most important factions threatening to rip Scotland apart, and fended off calls for her to be replaced as Regent by James V’s uncle, John Stewart, 2nd Duke of Albany. However, on 6 August 1514, in a move that remarkably foreshadowed the start of the fall from power of her granddaughter, Mary Queen of Scots, Margaret secretly married Archibald Douglas, 6th Earl of Angus, described even by his own uncle as a «young, witless fool». By doing so she forfeited the Regency under the terms of James IV’s will, and in September 1514 the Privy Council appointed the Duke of Albany, then resident in France, as Regent.

The Duke of Albany returned to Scotland in May 1515 and was formally made Regent in July that year. Margaret, meanwhile, was holed up in Stirling Castle with her sons, only surrendering them to Albany in August after what amounted to a genteel siege. By now pregnant with the Earl of Angus’s child, Margaret Tudor fled to England. In October she gave birth to Margaret Douglas, the future Countess of Lennox and mother of Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley, one day to be the second husband of Mary Queen of Scots, Margaret Tudor’s granddaughter via James V.

margaret tudor-3

While in England, Margaret heard the news of the death of her young son, Alexander, Earl of Ross: probably by natural causes, although her husband tried to convince her that the Duke of Albany was to blame. In 1517 she returned to Scotland where she discovered that in her absence her feckless new husband had been living with a former lover, Lady Jane Stewart, and using Margaret’s money to do so.

When the Duke of Albany returned – again – to Scotland in 1521 after spending three years in France, Margaret formed a close alliance with him. This lasted until 1524, when Margaret mounted a coup d’état that saw Albany deposed as Regent, fleeing again to France. The 12 year old James V was brought from Stirling to Edinburgh to great popular acclaim to take up his personal rule: under the continuing close guidance of his mother. At about the same time, Margaret formed an attachment with Henry Stewart, a younger brother of Lord Avondale. In November 1524 Margaret’s husband, the Earl of Angus arrived in Edinburgh with a large group of armed men, claiming that he had a right to attend Parliament. Margaret ordered the cannons at Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood House to open fire on him. The Earl of Angus did subsequently regain a foothold in Scottish society, and then used it to keep James V a virtual prisoner for three years.

margaret tudor-4

March 1527 Pope Clement VII granted Margaret’s request for a divorce from the Earl of Angus, and when she heard of it in December that year she rapidly married Henry Stewart. In June 1528, James V was finally able to exercise real power, and he appointed his mother and her third husband, now titled Lord Methven, as senior advisers. Lord Methven proved even more partial to his wife’s money and other women’s company than the Earl of Angus had done, but Margaret was unsuccessful in either retiring to England or obtaining a second divorce.

From 1538, Margaret, finally reconciled with Lord Methven, formed a close bond with her new daughter-in-law, Marie de Guise, the French Queen of James V. She continued to play an active part in court life until her death from a severe stroke at Methven Castle, Perthshire on 18 October 1541.

The parallels between the life of Margaret Tudor and the life of her granddaughter Mary Queen of Scots are uncanny. Both married foreign kings before becoming very young widows. Both married unwisely twice more. And both even married someone called Henry Stewart. Yet it says much for Margaret’s ability and determination that while her granddaughter held the reigns of power in Scotland for just six years, Margaret herself did so, in one form or another, for the better part of three decades.

margaret tudor-5


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Margaret Thatcher. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

Margaret Thatcher. 


Margaret Thatcher was Britain’s prime minister (or ‘PM’) for almost 12 years between 1979 and 1990.

She was often called «the Iron Lady».


She was born «Margaret Hilda Roberts» in Grantham, a small town in eastern England, on 13 October 1925.

When she was born the town was still recovering from the Great War of 1914-18.

The Second World War broke out in 1939 when she was 14 and lasted till 1945 when she was 20.


There was no television when she was small.

She loved films, which were a new thing when she was a child. Most came from America and she watched as many as she could.

She went to state schools and worked hard, winning a place at Oxford University when she was 18 to study chemistry.

But what she really wanted to do was to go into politics.

At university she won her first election, becoming president of the student Conservative Association.


Candidate for parliament & getting married:

After university she got her first job as a chemist and tried to become the Member of Parliament (or MP) for a town called Dartford in Kent, on the edge of London. She tried twice, in 1950 and 1951. She didn’t come close to winning, because most voters in Dartford supported the Labour Party. But she was the youngest woman candidate in the country, and very pretty, so her picture was in lots of newspapers. The photo to the left shows how she looked at this time. She hugely enjoyed fighting the elections.

It was in Dartford that she met and married Denis Thatcher, so becoming «Margaret Thatcher».

He was older than her and had fought in the war. They were a very close couple.


After years of trying she was chosen to be the Conservative candidate for Finchley, in north London.

Soon she was asked to become a member of the government, responsible for pensions and benefits. She was good at understanding all the complicated rules, and worked hard.


Education Minister:

Margaret Thatcher had a bad time as Education Minister, especially in her first year. She was attacked by people who were annoyed that she had abolished free school milk for older children and got the nickname «milk snatcher».


Leader of the Opposition:

After the election the Conservatives argued about what had gone wrong.

There was another election in October 1974 and they lost that one too.

Because her party wasn’t in power, but was much the largest party opposed to the government, she became «Leader of the Opposition».

She did that job for four years.


Prime Minister – first term:

Her government felt it had to do some painful things, particularly putting up interest rates to stop prices rising too fast (which is called inflation). As a result lots of people lost their jobs (known as unemployment). The policies were very unpopular at first and there were many protests and criticisms.

But in time things began to improve. Prices stopped rising so fast and the economy began to grow again.


Prime Minister – Second Term:

Margaret Thatcher’s second term as Prime Minister opened with almost as many problems as the first.

In October 1984, when the strike was still going on, the Irish Republican Army (IRA) attempted to murder Margaret Thatcher and many of her colleagues by bombing their hotel in Brighton during the Conservative Party annual conference. Although she survived unhurt, some of her closest friends were among the injured and dead. The room next to her bedroom was severely damaged, so the attackers came close to killing her.

She became a very well known international figure, with a particularly close relationship to the US President Ronald Reagan.


Prime Minister – Third Term:

There were huge reforms of education, local government and health care, all of them very controversial.

In these years the Cold War began to come to an end, an event in which Margaret Thatcher played her part.

She resigned as Prime Minister on November 28 1990. John Major succeeded her and held the job until the landslide election of Tony Blair’s Labour Government in May 1997.

She lives in London still. She has not been very well in recent years and is quite forgetful now, but she enjoys life and has many friends and admirers.



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Lauren Bacall. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

Lauren Bacall.

Lauren Bacall.

Lauren Bacall born Betty Joan Perske, September 16, 1924.

She is an American film and stage actress and model, known for her distinctive husky voice and sultry looks.

She first emerged as leading lady in the Humphrey Bogart film To Have And Have Not (1944) and continued on in the film noir genre, with appearances in Bogart movies The Big Sleep (1946) and Dark Passage (1947), as well as a comedienne in How to Marry a Millionaire (1953) with Marilyn Monroe and Designing Woman (1957) with Gregory Peck.

Bacall has also worked on Broadway in musicals, gaining Tony Awards for Applause in 1970 and Woman of the Year in 1981. Her performance in the movie The Mirror Has Two Faces (1996) earned her a Golden Globe Award and an Academy Award nomination.

Lauren BacallBorn Betty Joan Perske in New York City, she was the only child of Natalie Weinstein-Bacal, a secretary who later legally changed her surname to Bacall, and William Perske, who worked in sales.

Bacall’s parents were Jewish immigrants, from Poland and Romania, who emigrated through Ellis Island. She is first cousin to Shimon Peres, current President and former Prime Minister of Israel.Her parents divorced when she was five, and she took the Romanian form of her mother’s last name, Bacall. Bacall no longer saw her father and formed a close bond with her mother, whom she took with her to California when she became a movie star.

Bacall took lessons at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. During this time, she became a theatre usher and worked as a fashion model.

Lauren Bacall

In Young Man with a Horn (1950), co-starring Kirk Douglas, Doris Day, and Hoagy Carmichael, Bacall played a two-faced femme fatale. This movie is often considered the first big-budget jazz film. During 1951-52, Bacall co-starred with Bogart in the syndicated action-adventure radio series Bold Venture. Bacall starred in the CinemaScope comedy How to Marry a Millionaire (1953), a runaway hit that saw her teaming up with Marilyn Monroe and Betty Grable.

Bacall’s movie career waned in the 1960s, and she was only seen in a handful of films. On Broadway she starred in Goodbye, Charlie (1959), Cactus Flower (1965), Applause (1970) and Woman of the Year (1981). She won Tony Awards for her performances in the latter two.

Lauren Bacall

During the 1980s and early 1990s, Bacall appeared in the poorly received star vehicle The Fan (1981), as well as some star-studded features such as Robert Altman‘s Health (1980), Michael Winner‘s Appointment with Death (1988), and Rob Reiner‘s Misery (1990).

On May 21, 1945, Bacall married Humphrey Bogart. Their wedding and honeymoon took place at Malabar Farm, Lucas, Ohio. Bacall was 20 and Bogart was 45. They remained married until Bogart’s death from esophageal cancer in 1957.

Lauren Bacall.

Shortly after Bogart’s death in 1957, Bacall had a relationship with singer and actor Frank Sinatra.

Bacall was married to actor Jason Robards, Jr., who resembled Bogart in various ways, from 1961 to 1969. According to Bacall’s autobiography, she divorced Robards mainly because of his alcoholism.

Bacall had a son and daughter with Bogart and a son with Robards.

Lauren Bacall


Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139

Cursos de inglés en Madrid
Cursos de inglés en Madrid

Whitney Houston. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.

Whitney Houston


Date of Birth:

9 August 1963, Newark, New Jersey, USA

Date of Death:

11 February 2012, Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA (accidental drowning caused by heart disease and cocaine use)

Birth Name:

Whitney Elizabeth Houston

Whitney Elizabeth Houston was born into a musical family on 9 August 1963, in Newark, New Jersey.

She was  the daughter of gospel star Cissy Houston, cousin of singing star Dionne Warwick and goddaughter of soul legend Aretha Franklin.
She began singing in the choir at her church, The New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, as a young child and by the age of 15 was singing backing vocals professionally with her mother on Chaka Khan‘s 1978 hit, ‘I’m Every Woman’. She went on to provide backing vocals for Lou Rawls, Jermaine Jackson and her own mother and worked briefly as a model, appearing on the cover of ‘Seventeen’ magazine in 1981.

She began working as a featured vocalist for the New York-based funk band Material and it was the quality of her vocal work with them that attracted the attention of the major record labels, including Arista with whom she signed in 1983 and where she stayed for the rest of her career.


Her debut album, ‘Whitney Houston’, was released in 1985 and became the biggest-selling album by a debut artist. Several hit singles, including ‘Saving All My Love For You’, ‘How Will I Know’, ‘You Give Good Love’, and ‘The Greatest Love of All’, were released from the album, setting her up for a Beatles-beating seven consecutive US number ones. The album itself sold 3 million copies in its first year in the US and went on to sell 25 million worldwide, winning her the first of her six Grammies.


The 1987 follow-up album, ‘Whitney’, which included the hits ‘Where Do Broken Hearts Go’ and ‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody’, built on her success but it was the 1992 film El guardaespaldas (1992) that sealed her place as one of the best-selling artists of all time. While the movie itself and her performance in it were not highly praised, the soundtrack album and her cover of the Dolly Parton song ‘I Will Always Love You’ topped the singles and albums charts for months and sold 44 million copies around the world.


That same year she married ex-New Edition singer Bobby Brown with whom she had her only child, their daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown in March 1993. It was about this time that her much documented drug use began and by 1996 she was a daily user.

Her 1998 album, ‘My Love Is Your Love’ was well reviewed but the drug abuse began to affect her reputation and press reports at the time said that she was becoming difficult to work with, if she turned up at all. She was dropped from a performance at The 72nd Annual Academy Awards (2000) (TV) because she was «out of it» at rehearsals. Her weight fluctuated wildly – she was so thin at a ‘Michael Jackson’ tribute in 2001 that rumors circulated the next day that she had died – and her voice began to fail her. She was twice admitted to rehab and declared herself drug-free in 2010 but returned to rehab in May 2011.


Her 2009 comeback album ‘I Look To You’ was positively received and sold well, but promotional performances were still marred by her weakened voice. Her final acting performance was in Sparkle (2012) (a remake of the 1976 movie, Sparkle (1976)), released after her death.

She was found dead in a Beverly Hills hotel room on 11 February 2012.




Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139


Cursos de inglés en Madrid
Cursos de inglés en Madrid

ERNEST HEMINGWAY. Famous people in English. Personajes famosos en inglés.


Ernest Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961), born in Oak Park, Illinois, started his career as a writer in a newspaper office in Kansas City at the age of seventeen.

After the United States entered the First World War, he joined a volunteer ambulance unit in the Italian army. Serving at the front, he was wounded, was decorated by the Italian Government, and spent considerable time in hospitals.

Ernest Hemingway

After his return to the United States, he became a reporter for Canadian and American newspapers and was soon sent back to Europe to cover such events as the Greek Revolution.

During the twenties, Hemingway became a member of the group of expatriate Americans in Paris, which he described in his first important work, The Sun Also Rises (1926). Equally successful was A Farewell to Arms (1929), the study of an American ambulance officer’s disillusionment in the war and his role as a deserter.

Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway used his experiences as a reporter during the civil war in Spain as the background for his most ambitious novel, For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940). Among his later works, the most outstanding is the short novel, The Old Man and the Sea (1952), the story of an old fisherman’s journey, his long and lonely struggle with a fish and the sea, and his victory in defeat.

Hemingway produced most of his work between the mid-1920s and the mid-1950s, and won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954.

Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway – himself a great sportsman – liked to portray soldiers, hunters, bullfighters – tough, at times primitive people whose courage and honesty are set against the brutal ways of modern society, and who in this confrontation lose hope and faith. His straightforward prose, his spare dialogue, and his predilection for understatement are particularly effective in his short stories, some of which are collected in Men Without Women (1927) and The Fifth Column and the First Forty-Nine Stories (1938).

Ernest Hemingway

Shortly after the publication of The Old Man and the Sea in 1952, Hemingway went on safari to Africa, where he was almost killed in two successive plane crashes that left him in pain or ill-health for much of the rest of his life. Hemingway had permanent residences in Key West, Florida, and Cuba during the 1930s and 1940s, but in 1959 he moved from Cuba to Ketchum, Idaho, where he committed suicide in the summer of 1961.

Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway’s legacy to American literature is his style: writers who came after him emulated it or avoided it.

Almost exactly 35 years after Hemingway’s death, on July 1, 1996, his granddaughter Margaux Hemingway died in Santa Monica, California. Margaux was a supermodel and actress, co-starring with her sister Mariel in the 1976 movie Lipstick. Her death was later ruled a suicide, making her «the fifth person in four generations of her family to commit suicide.»

Ernest Hemingway


Calle Princesa, 70 1º

28008 Madrid

Teléfono – 915433139