Relief

Relief is a sculptural technique where the sculpted elements remain attached to a solid background of the same material. The term relief is from the Latin verb relevo, to raise. To create a sculpture in relief is to give the impression that the sculpted material has been raised above the background plane.[2] What is actually performed when a relief is cut in from a flat surface of stone (relief sculpture) or wood (relief carving) is a lowering of the field, leaving the unsculpted parts seemingly raised. The technique involves considerable chiselling away of the background, which is a time-consuming exercise. On the other hand, a relief saves forming the rear of a subject, and is less fragile and more securely fixed than a sculpture in the round, especially one of a standing figure where the ankles are a potential weak point, especially in stone. In other materials such as metal, clay, plaster stucco, ceramics or papier-mâché the form can be just added to or raised up from the background, and monumental bronze reliefs are made by casting.

There are different degrees of relief depending on the degree of projection of the sculpted form from the field, for which the Italian and French terms are still sometimes used in English. The full range includes high relief (alto-rilievo, haut-relief),[3] where more than 50% of the depth is shown and there may be undercut areas, mid-relief (mezzo-rilievo), low-relief (basso-rilievo, or French: bas-relief /ˌbɑːrɪˈliːf/), and shallow-relief or rilievo schiacciato,[4] where the plane is only very slightly lower than the sculpted elements. There is also sunk relief, which was mainly restricted to Ancient Egypt (see below). However, the distinction between high relief and low relief is the clearest and most important, and these two are generally the only terms used to discuss most work.

The definition of these terms is somewhat variable, and many works combine areas in more than one of them, sometimes sliding between them in a single figure; accordingly some writers prefer to avoid all distinctions.[5] The opposite of relief sculpture is counter-relief, intaglio, or cavo-rilievo,[6] where the form is cut into the field or background rather than rising from it; this is very rare in monumental sculpture. Hyphens may or may not be used in all these terms, though they are rarely seen in "sunk relief" and are usual in "bas-relief" and "counter-relief". Works in the technique are described as "in relief", and, especially in monumental sculpture, the work itself is "a relief".

Reliefs are common throughout the world on the walls of buildings and a variety of smaller settings, and a sequence of several panels or sections of relief may represent an extended narrative. Relief is more suitable for depicting complicated subjects with many figures and very active poses, such as battles, than free-standing "sculpture in the round". Most ancient architectural reliefs were originally painted, which helped to define forms in low relief. The subject of reliefs is for convenient reference assumed in this article to be usually figures, but sculpture in relief often depicts decorative geometrical or foliage patterns, as in the arabesques of Islamic art, and may be of any subject.

Rock reliefs are those carved into solid rock in the open air (if inside caves, whether natural or man-made, they are more likely to be called "rock-cut"). This type is found in many cultures, in particular those of the Ancient Near East and Buddhist countries. A stele is a single standing stone; many of these carry reliefs.

Warka vase (background retouched)
The Warka Vase of Sumer belongs to the Art of Mesopotamia and is one of the earliest surviving works of narrative relief, dated to c. 3200–3000 BC. Alabaster. National Museum of Iraq.[1]

Types

The distinction between high and low relief is somewhat subjective, and the two are very often combined in a single work. In particular, most later "high reliefs" contain sections in low relief, usually in the background. From the Parthenon Frieze onwards, many single figures in large monumental sculpture have heads in high relief, but their lower legs are in low relief. The slightly projecting figures created in this way work well in reliefs that are seen from below, and reflect that the heads of figures are usually of more interest to both artist and viewer than the legs or feet. As unfinished examples from various periods show, raised reliefs, whether high or low, were normally "blocked out" by marking the outline of the figure and reducing the background areas to the new background level, work no doubt performed by apprentices (see gallery).

Low relief or bas-relief

Reliefs of animals, Göbekli Tepe Layer III, circa 9000 BCE
Low relief from the Pre-Pottery Neolithic archaeological site of Göbekli Tepe, believed to represent a bull, a fox, and a crane. Circa 9,000 BC.

A low relief or bas-relief ("low relief", French pronunciation: ​[baʁəljɛf], from the Italian basso rilievo; this is now a rather old-fashioned term in English) is a projecting image with a shallow overall depth, for example used on coins, on which all images are in low relief. In the lowest reliefs the relative depth of the elements shown is completely distorted, and if seen from the side the image makes no sense, but from the front the small variations in depth register as a three-dimensional image. Other versions distort depth much less. It is a technique which requires less work, and is therefore cheaper to produce, as less of the background needs to be removed in a carving, or less modelling is required. In the art of Ancient Egypt, Assyrian palace reliefs, and other ancient Near Eastern and Asian cultures, and also Meso-America, a consistent very low relief was commonly used for the whole composition. These images would usually be painted after carving, which helped define the forms; today the paint has worn off in the great majority of surviving examples, but minute, invisible remains of paint can usually be discovered through chemical means.

Rock Relief of Iddin-Sin, King of Simurrum
A low-relief dating to circa 2000 BC, from the kingdom of Simurrum, modern Iraq

The Ishtar Gate of Babylon, now in Berlin, has low reliefs of large animals formed from moulded bricks, glazed in colour. Plaster, which made the technique far easier, was widely used in Egypt and the Near East from antiquity into Islamic times (latterly for architectural decoration, as at the Alhambra), Rome, and Europe from at least the Renaissance, as well as probably elsewhere. However, it needs very good conditions to survive long in unmaintained buildings – Roman decorative plasterwork is mainly known from Pompeii and other sites buried by ash from Mount Vesuvius. Low relief was relatively rare in Western medieval art, but may be found, for example in wooden figures or scenes on the insides of the folding wings of multi-panel altarpieces.

The revival of low relief, which was seen as a classical style, begins early in the Renaissance; the Tempio Malatestiano in Rimini, a pioneering classicist building, designed by Leon Battista Alberti around 1450, uses low reliefs by Agostino di Duccio inside and on the external walls. Since the Renaissance plaster has been very widely used for indoor ornamental work such as cornices and ceilings, but in the 16th century it was used for large figures (many also using high relief) at the Chateau of Fontainebleau, which were imitated more crudely elsewhere, for example in the Elizabethan Hardwick Hall.

Shallow-relief or rilievo stiacciato is a very shallow relief, which merges into engraving in places, and can be hard to read in photographs. It is often used for the background areas of compositions with the main elements in low-relief, but its use over a whole (usually rather small) piece was perfected by the Italian Renaissance sculptor Donatello.[7]

In later Western art, until a 20th-century revival, low relief was used mostly for smaller works or combined with higher relief to convey a sense of distance, or to give depth to the composition, especially for scenes with many figures and a landscape or architectural background, in the same way that lighter colours are used for the same purpose in painting. Thus figures in the foreground are sculpted in high-relief, those in the background in low-relief. Low relief may use any medium or technique of sculpture, stone carving and metal casting being most common. Large architectural compositions all in low relief saw a revival in the 20th century, being popular on buildings in Art Deco and related styles, which borrowed from the ancient low reliefs now available in museums.[8] Some sculptors, including Eric Gill, have adopted the "squashed" depth of low relief in works that are actually free-standing.

Narmer Palette

Both sides of the Narmer Palette, one of the earliest Egyptian reliefs, made from siltstone. 3200-3000 BC

UnfinishedStele-NefertitiPouringWineIntoAkhenatensCup

"Blocked-out" unfinished low relief of Ahkenaten and Nefertiti; unfinished Greek and Persian high-reliefs show the same method of beginning a work.

Nowruz Zoroastrian

Persian low or bas-relief in Persepolis – a symbol of Zoroastrian Nowruz – at the spring equinox the power of the bull (personifying Earth) and lion (personifying the Sun) are equal.

Atropos

Atropos cutting the thread of life. Ancient Greek low relief

Donatello, madonna col bambino a un parapetto, davanti a un arco rotto, 1435 circa - National Gallery of Art, Washington - DSC08597

Donatello, Madonna and Child in rilievo stiacciato or shallow relief

Henri Lebrand 2

French 20th-century low relief

PupienusSest

Low-relief on Roman sestertius, 238 AD

Mid-relief

Banteay Srei in Angkor
Low relief, Banteay Srei, Cambodia; Ravana shaking Mount Kailasa, the Abode of Siva

Mid-relief, "half-relief" or mezzo-rilievo is somewhat imprecisely defined, and the term is not often used in English, the works usually being described as low relief instead. The typical traditional definition is that only up to half of the subject projects, and no elements are undercut or fully disengaged from the background field. The depth of the elements shown is normally somewhat distorted.

Mid-relief is probably the most common type of relief found in the Hindu and Buddhist art of India and Southeast Asia. The low to mid-reliefs of 2nd-century BCE to 6th-century CE Ajanta Caves and 5th to 10th-century Ellora Caves in India are rock reliefs. Most of these reliefs are used to narrate sacred scriptures, such as the 1,460 panels of the 9th-century Borobudur temple in Central Java, Indonesia, narrating the Jataka tales or lives of the Buddha. Other examples are low reliefs narrating the Ramayana Hindu epic in Prambanan temple, also in Java, in Cambodia, the temples of Angkor, with scenes including the Samudra manthan or "Churning the Ocean of Milk" at the 12th-century Angkor Wat, and reliefs of apsaras. At Bayon temple in Angkor Thom there are scenes of daily life in the Khmer Empire.

High relief

Gobeklitepe animal sculpture, circa 9000 BCE
A predatory animal in very high relief, and his prey in low relief, on a vertical pillar at Göbekli Tepe, c. 9,000 BC.[9]

High relief (or altorilievo, from Italian) is where in general more than half the mass of the sculpted figure projects from the background. Indeed, the most prominent elements of the composition, especially heads and limbs, are often completely undercut, detaching them from the field. The parts of the subject that are seen are normally depicted at their full depth, unlike low relief where the elements seen are "squashed" flatter. High relief thus uses essentially the same style and techniques as free-standing sculpture, and in the case of a single figure gives largely the same view as a person standing directly in front of a free-standing statue would have. All cultures and periods in which large sculptures were created used this technique in monumental sculpture and architecture.

Ac marbles
High relief metope from the Classical Greek Elgin Marbles. Some front limbs are actually detached from the background completely, while the centaur's left rear leg is in low relief.

Most of the many grand figure reliefs in Ancient Greek sculpture used a very "high" version of high relief, with elements often fully free of the background, and parts of figures crossing over each other to indicate depth. The metopes of the Parthenon have largely lost their fully rounded elements, except for heads, showing the advantages of relief in terms of durability. High relief has remained the dominant form for reliefs with figures in Western sculpture, also being common in Indian temple sculpture. Smaller Greek sculptures such as private tombs, and smaller decorative areas such as friezes on large buildings, more often used low relief.

Western Group of Temples, Khajuraho 20
High-relief deities at Khajuraho, India

Hellenistic and Roman sarcophagus reliefs were cut with a drill rather than chisels, enabling and encouraging compositions extremely crowded with figures, like the Ludovisi Battle sarcophagus (250–260 CE). These are also seen in the enormous strips of reliefs that wound around Roman triumphal columns. The sarcophagi in particular exerted a huge influence on later Western sculpture. The European Middle Ages tended to use high relief for all purposes in stone, though like Ancient Roman sculpture, their reliefs were typically not as high as in Ancient Greece.[10] Very high relief re-emerged in the Renaissance, and was especially used in wall-mounted funerary art and later on Neoclassical pediments and public monuments.

In the Buddhist and Hindu art of India and Southeast Asia, high relief can also be found, although it is not as common as low to mid-reliefs. Famous examples of Indian high reliefs can be found at the Khajuraho temples, with voluptuous, twisting figures that often illustrate the erotic Kamasutra positions. In the 9th-century Prambanan temple, Central Java, high reliefs of Lokapala devatas, the guardians of deities of the directions, are found.

Sunk relief

Akhenaten, Nefertiti and their children
A sunk-relief depiction of Pharaoh Akhenaten with his wife Nefertiti and daughters. The main background has not been removed, merely that in the immediate vicinity of the sculpted form. Note how strong shadows are needed to define the image.

Sunk or sunken relief is largely restricted to the art of Ancient Egypt where it is very common, becoming after the Amarna period of Ahkenaten the dominant type used, as opposed to low relief. It had been used earlier, but mainly for large reliefs on external walls, and for hieroglyphs and cartouches. The image is made by cutting the relief sculpture itself into a flat surface. In a simpler form the images are usually mostly linear in nature, like hieroglyphs, but in most cases the figure itself is in low relief, but set within a sunken area shaped round the image, so that the relief never rises beyond the original flat surface. In some cases the figures and other elements are in a very low relief that does not rise to the original surface, but others are modeled more fully, with some areas rising to the original surface. This method minimizes the work removing the background, while allowing normal relief modelling.

The technique is most successful with strong sunlight to emphasise the outlines and forms by shadow, as no attempt was made to soften the edge of the sunk area, leaving a face at a right-angle to the surface all around it. Some reliefs, especially funerary monuments with heads or busts from ancient Rome and later Western art, leave a "frame" at the original level around the edge of the relief, or place a head in a hemispherical recess in the block (see Roman example in gallery). Though essentially very similar to Egyptian sunk relief, but with a background space at the lower level around the figure, the term would not normally be used of such works.

Counter-relief

Sunk relief technique is not to be confused with "counter-relief" or intaglio as seen on engraved gem seals—where an image is fully modeled in a "negative" manner. The image goes into the surface, so that when impressed on wax it gives an impression in normal relief. However many engraved gems were carved in cameo or normal relief.

A few very late Hellenistic monumental carvings in Egypt use full "negative" modelling as though on a gem seal, perhaps as sculptors trained in the Greek tradition attempted to use traditional Egyptian conventions.[11]

Small objects

French - Diptych with Scenes from the Passion of Christ - Walters 71179 - Open
French Gothic diptych, 25 cm (9.8 in) high, with crowded scenes from the Life of Christ, c. 1350–1365

Small-scale reliefs have been carved in various materials, notably ivory, wood, and wax. Reliefs are often found in decorative arts such as ceramics and metalwork; these are less often described as "reliefs" than as "in relief". Small bronze reliefs are often in the form of "plaques" or plaquettes, which may be set in furniture or framed, or just kept as they are, a popular form for European collectors, especially in the Renaissance.

Various modelling techniques are used, such repoussé ("pushed-back") in metalwork, where a thin metal plate is shaped from behind using various metal or wood punches, producing a relief image. Casting has also been widely used in bronze and other metals. Casting and repoussé are often used in concert in to speed up production and add greater detail to the final relief. In stone, as well as engraved gems, larger hardstone carvings in semi-precious stones have been highly prestigious since ancient times in many Eurasian cultures. Reliefs in wax were produced at least from the Renaissance.

Carved ivory reliefs have been used since ancient times, and because the material, though expensive, cannot usually be reused, they have a relatively high survival rate, and for example consular diptychs represent a large proportion of the survivals of portable secular art from Late Antiquity. In the Gothic period the carving of ivory reliefs became a considerable luxury industry in Paris and other centres. As well as small diptychs and triptychs with densely packed religious scenes, usually from the New Testament, secular objects, usually in a lower relief, were also produced.

These were often round mirror-cases, combs, handles, and other small items, but included a few larger caskets like the Casket with Scenes of Romances (Walters 71264) in Baltimore, Maryland, in the United States. Originally they were very often painted in bright colours. Reliefs can be impressed by stamps onto clay, or the clay pressed into a mould bearing the design, as was usual with the mass-produced terra sigillata of Ancient Roman pottery. Decorative reliefs in plaster or stucco may be much larger; this form of architectural decoration is found in many styles of interiors in the post-Renaissance West, and in Islamic architecture.

Gallery

Luxor temple 15

Sunk relief as low relief within a sunk outline, from the Luxor Temple in Egypt, carved in very hard granite

Luxor Temple 9544

low relief within a sunk outline, linear sunk relief in the hieroglyphs, and high relief (right), from Luxor

Borobudur Relief Panel I.b119, 0972

Low to mid-relief, 9th century, Borobudur. The temple has 1,460 panels of reliefs narrating Buddhist scriptures.

Qajari relief

A Persian mid-relief (mezzo-rilievo) from the Qajar era, at Tangeh Savashi in Iran, which might also be described as two stages of low relief This is a rock relief carved into a cliff.

Rilievo funerario dei vibii, fine del I secolo ac.

Roman funerary relief with frame at original level, but not sunk relief

Warren Cup BM GR 1999.4-26.1 n2

The Roman Warren Cup, silver repoussé work

North wall of Ara Pacis, Rome (cropped)

A common mixture of high and low relief, in the Roman Ara Pacis, placed to be seen from below. Low relief ornament at bottom

Yaxchilan Lintel 24

Yaxchilan Lintel 24, a Mayan carving depicting a blood sacrifice

Bas relief nagsh-e-rostam al

Rock relief at Naqsh-e Rustam; the Persian Sassanian emperor Shapur I (on horseback) with Roman emperors submitting to him

Abadia de Saint-Pierre de Moissac - Portalada Sud de Moissac

The 12th century Romanesque portal of Christ in Majesty at Moissac Abbey moves between low and high relief in a single figure.

Triptych Harbaville Louvre OA3247 recto

Harbaville Triptych, Byzantine ivory

Relief-side view

Side view of mid-relief: Madonna and Child, marble of c. 1500/1510 by an unknown north Italian sculptor

Fontainebleau escalier roi5

The elaborate stucco (plaster) reliefs decorating the Chateau de Fontainebleau were hugely influential. Low-relief decorative frieze above

Adorazione dei pastori - Francesco Grassia

Baroque marble high-relief by Francesco Grassia, 1670, Rome

St GaudensShaw Mem

Robert Gould Shaw Memorial, 1897, Boston, combining free-standing elements with high and low relief

Relief on building in Bishopsgate, London 2

A relatively modern high relief (depicting shipbuilding) in Bishopsgate, London. Note that some elements jut out of the frame of the image.

Unakoti group of bas-relief sculptures, Tripura, India

Colossal Hindu rock reliefs at Unakoti, Tripura, India

Abraham (Gates of Paradise) 01

Side view of Lorenzo Ghiberti's cast gilt-bronze Gates of Paradise at the Florence Baptistery in Florence, Italy, combining high-relief main figures with backgrounds mostly in low relief

Albert Memorial Friese Facing South - May 2008

A face of the high-relief Frieze of Parnassus round the base of the Albert Memorial in London. Most of the heads and many feet are completely undercut, but the torsos are "engaged" with the surface behind.

Notable reliefs

Notable examples of monumental reliefs include:

Smaller-scale reliefs:

See also

References

Notes

  1. ^ Kleiner, Fred S.; Mamiya, Christin J. (2006). Gardner's Art Through the Ages: The Western Perspective – Volume 1 (12th ed.). Belmont, California, USA: Thomson Wadsworth. pp. 20–21. ISBN 0-495-00479-0.
  2. ^ "Relief". Merriam-Webster. Archived from the original on 2012-05-31. Retrieved 2012-05-31.
  3. ^ In modern English, just "high relief"; alto-rilievo was used in the 18th century and a little beyond, while haut-relief has surprisingly found a niche, restricted to archaeological writing, in recent decades after it was used in under-translated French texts about prehistoric cave art, and copied even by English writers. Its use is to be deprecated.
  4. ^ Murray, Peter & Linda, Penguin Dictionary of Art & Artists, London, 1989. p. 348, Relief; bas-relief remained common in English until the mid 20th century.
  5. ^ For example Avery in Grove Art Online, whose long article on "Relief sculpture" barely mentions or defines them, except for sunk relief.
  6. ^ Murray, 1989, op.cit.
  7. ^ Avery, vi
  8. ^ Avery, vii
  9. ^ Steadman, Sharon R.; McMahon, Gregory (2011). The Oxford Handbook of Ancient Anatolia: (10,000-323 BCE). Oxford University Press USA. p. 923. ISBN 9780195376142.
  10. ^ Avery, ii and iii
  11. ^ Barasch, Moshe, Visual Syncretism: A Case Study, pp. 39–43 in Budick, Stanford & Iser, Wolfgang, eds., The Translatability of cultures: figurations of the space between, Stanford University Press, 1996, ISBN 0-8047-2561-6 (ISBN 978-0-8047-2561-3).

Works cited

  • Avery, Charles, in Grove Art Online, "Relief sculpture". Retrieved April 7, 2011.

External links

Comic Relief

Comic Relief is an operating British charity, founded in 1985 by the comedy scriptwriter Richard Curtis and comedian Lenny Henry in response to famine in Ethiopia. The highlight of Comic Relief's appeal is Red Nose Day, a biennial telethon held in March, alternating with its sister project Sport Relief.

A prominent biennial event in British popular culture, Comic Relief is one of the two high-profile telethon events held in the United Kingdom, the other being Children in Need, held annually in November. At the end of the 2015 Red Nose Day telethon on 14 March it was announced that in the 30-year history of Comic Relief the Red Nose Day and Sport Relief appeals had raised in excess of £1 billion.

Comic relief

Comic relief is the inclusion of a humorous character, scene, or witty dialogue in an otherwise serious work, often to relieve tension.

David Walliams

David Edward Walliams (born David Edward Williams; 20 August 1971) is an English actor, comedian, writer, and television personality. He is best known for his partnership with Matt Lucas on the BBC One sketch comedy shows Little Britain and Come Fly With Me. Since 2012, he has been a judge on the ITV talent show Britain's Got Talent. He is also a writer of children's books, having sold more than 25 million copies worldwide.

Walliams was born in the London Borough of Merton and grew up in Surrey. He was educated at Reigate Grammar School in Reigate, before graduating with a Bachelor of Arts (Drama) from the University of Bristol. He began performing with the National Youth Theatre in the 1990s, where he met his comedy partner Matt Lucas. From 2003 to 2005, Walliams co-wrote and co-starred in three series of the BBC sketch show Little Britain alongside Lucas. The programme first aired on BBC Three before moving to the more mainstream BBC One, being deemed a critical success and hit with viewing figures.

Since 2012 Walliams has been a judge on the ITV talent show Britain's Got Talent alongside Amanda Holden, Alesha Dixon and Simon Cowell. In 2015, 2018, and 2019, he was recognised at the National Television Awards as Best Judge for his involvement in the series. Walliams wrote and starred in two series of the BBC One sitcom Big School, playing the role of chemistry teacher Keith Church. In 2015, he starred as Tommy Beresford in the BBC series Partners in Crime based on the Tommy and Tuppence novels by Agatha Christie. His other acting credits include scenes in the Stephen Poliakoff film Capturing Mary in 2007.

Walliams began writing children's novels in 2008 after securing a contract with the publisher HarperCollins. His books have been translated into 53 languages, and he has been described as "the fastest growing children's author in the UK", with a literary style compared to that of Roald Dahl. Seven of his books have been adapted into television films. Walliams was awarded an OBE, for his services to charity and the arts, in 2017. His charity work includes swimming the English Channel, Strait of Gibraltar and River Thames, raising millions of pounds for the BBC charity Sport Relief.

Donner Party

The Donner Party (sometimes called the Donner–Reed Party) was a group of American pioneers who migrated to California in a wagon train from the Midwest. Delayed by a series of mishaps, they spent the winter of 1846–47 snowbound in the Sierra Nevada. Some of the migrants resorted to cannibalism to survive, eating the bodies of those who had succumbed to starvation and sickness.

The Donner Party departed Missouri on the Oregon Trail in the spring of 1846, behind many other pioneer families who were attempting to make the same overland trip. The journey west usually took between four and six months, but the Donner Party was slowed after electing to follow a new route called the Hastings Cutoff, which bypassed established trails and instead crossed Utah's Wasatch Mountains and the Great Salt Lake Desert. The desolate and rugged terrain, and the difficulties they later encountered while traveling along the Humboldt River in present-day Nevada, resulted in the loss of many cattle and wagons, and divisions soon formed within the group.

By early November, the migrants had reached the Sierra Nevada but became trapped by an early, heavy snowfall near Truckee Lake (now Donner Lake) high in the mountains. Their food supplies ran dangerously low, and in mid-December some of the group set out on foot to obtain help. Rescuers from California attempted to reach the migrants, but the first relief party did not arrive until the middle of February 1847, almost four months after the wagon train became trapped. Of the 87 members of the party, 42 ultimately died. Historians have described the episode as one of the most spectacular tragedies in California history, and in the entire record of American westward migration.

Drought

A drought or drouth is a natural disaster of below-average precipitation in a given region, resulting in prolonged shortages in the water supply, whether atmospheric, surface water or ground water. A drought can last for months or years, or may be declared after as few as 15 days. It can have a substantial impact on the ecosystem and agriculture of the affected region and harm to the local economy. Annual dry seasons in the tropics significantly increase the chances of a drought developing and subsequent bush fires. Periods of heat can significantly worsen drought conditions by hastening evaporation of water vapour.

Many plant species, such as those in the family Cactaceae (or cacti), have drought tolerance adaptations like reduced leaf area and waxy cuticles to enhance their ability to tolerate drought. Some others survive dry periods as buried seeds. Semi-permanent drought produces arid biomes such as deserts and grasslands. Prolonged droughts have caused mass migrations and humanitarian crisis. Most arid ecosystems have inherently low productivity. The most prolonged drought ever in the world in recorded history occurred in the Atacama Desert in Chile (400 Years).

Emergency management

Emergency Management is the organization and management of the resources and responsibilities for dealing with all humanitarian aspects of emergencies (preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation). The aim is to reduce the harmful effects of all hazards, including disasters.

The World Health Organization defines an emergency as the state in which normal procedures are interrupted, and immediate measures need to be taken to prevent that state turning into a disaster. Thus, emergency management is crucial to avoid the disruption transforming into a disaster, which is even harder to recover from. Emergency management is a related term but should not be equated to disaster management.

Herbert Hoover

Herbert Clark Hoover (August 10, 1874 – October 20, 1964) was an American engineer, businessman, and politician who served as the 31st president of the United States from 1929 to 1933. A member of the Republican Party, he held office during the onset of the Great Depression. Prior to serving as president, Hoover led the Commission for Relief in Belgium, served as the director of the U.S. Food Administration, and served as the 3rd U.S. Secretary of Commerce.

Born to a Quaker family in West Branch, Iowa, Hoover took a position with a London-based mining company after graduating from Stanford University in 1895. After the outbreak of World War I, he became the head of the Commission for Relief in Belgium, an international relief organization that provided food to occupied Belgium. When the U.S. entered the war, President Woodrow Wilson appointed Hoover to lead the Food Administration, and Hoover became known as the country's "food czar". After the war, Hoover led the American Relief Administration, which provided food to the inhabitants of Central Europe and Eastern Europe. Hoover's war-time service made him a favorite of many progressives, and he unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination in the 1920 presidential election.

After the 1920 election, newly-elected Republican President Warren G. Harding appointed Hoover as Secretary of Commerce; Hoover continued to serve under President Calvin Coolidge after Harding died in 1923. Hoover was an unusually active and visible cabinet member, becoming known as "Secretary of Commerce and Under-Secretary of all other departments". He was influential in the development of radio and air travel and led the federal response to the Great Mississippi Flood of 1927. Hoover won the Republican nomination in the 1928 presidential election, and decisively defeated the Democratic candidate, Al Smith. The stock market crashed shortly after Hoover took office, and the Great Depression became the central issue of his presidency. Hoover pursued a variety of policies in an attempt to lift the economy, but opposed directly involving the federal government in relief efforts.

In the midst of an ongoing economic crisis, Hoover was decisively defeated by Democratic nominee Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1932 presidential election. Hoover enjoyed one of the longest retirements of any former president, and he authored numerous works. After leaving office, Hoover became increasingly conservative, and he strongly criticized Roosevelt's foreign policy and New Deal domestic agenda. In the 1940s and 1950s, Hoover's public reputation was rehabilitated as he served for Presidents Harry S. Truman and Dwight D. Eisenhower in various assignments, including as chairman of the Hoover Commission. Nevertheless, Hoover is generally not ranked highly in historical rankings of presidents of the United States.

Humanitarian aid

Humanitarian aid is material and logistic assistance to people who need help. It is usually short-term help until the long-term help by government and other institutions replaces it. Among the people in need are the homeless, refugees, and victims of natural disasters, wars and famines. Humanitarian aid is material or logistical assistance provided for humanitarian purposes, typically in response to humanitarian relief efforts including natural disasters and man-made disaster. The primary objective of humanitarian aid is to save lives, alleviate suffering, and maintain human dignity. It may therefore be distinguished from development aid, which seeks to address the underlying socioeconomic factors which may have led to a crisis or emergency. There is a debate on linking humanitarian aid and development efforts, which was reinforced by the World Humanitarian Summit in 2016. However, the approach is viewed critically by practitioners.Humanitarian aid aims to bring short term relief to victims until long term relief can be provided by the government and other institutions. Humanitarian aid considers “a fundamental expression of the universal value of solidarity between people and a moral imperative”. Humanitarian aid can come from either local or international communities. In reaching out to international communities, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) of the United Nations (UN) is responsible for coordination responses to emergencies. It taps to the various members of Inter-Agency Standing Committee, whose members are responsible for providing emergency relief. The four UN entities that have primary roles in delivering humanitarian aid are United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the World Food Programme (WFP).According to The Overseas Development Institute, a London-based research establishment, whose findings were released in April 2009 in the paper "Providing aid in insecure environments:2009 Update", the most lethal year in the history of humanitarianism was 2008, in which 122 aid workers were murdered and 260 assaulted. The countries deemed least safe were Somalia and Afghanistan. In 2012, Humanitarian Outcomes reported that the countries with the highest incidents were: Afghanistan, South Sudan, Syria, Pakistan and Somalia.

Injunction

An injunction is a legal and equitable remedy in the form of a special court order that compels a party to do or refrain from specific acts. "When a court employs the extraordinary remedy of injunction, it directs the conduct of a party, and does so with the backing of its full coercive powers." A party that fails to comply with an injunction faces criminal or civil penalties, including possible monetary sanctions and even imprisonment. They can also be charged with contempt of court. Counterinjunctions are injunctions that stop or reverse the enforcement of another injunction.

Karst

Karst is a topography formed from the dissolution of soluble rocks such as limestone, dolomite, and gypsum. It is characterized by underground drainage systems with sinkholes and caves. It has also been documented for more weathering-resistant rocks, such as quartzite, given the right conditions. Subterranean drainage may limit surface water, with few to no rivers or lakes. However, in regions where the dissolved bedrock is covered (perhaps by debris) or confined by one or more superimposed non-soluble rock strata, distinctive karst features may occur only at subsurface levels and be totally missing above ground.

The study of karst is considered of prime importance in petroleum geology because as much as 50% of the world's hydrocarbon reserves are hosted in porous karst systems.

Legal remedy

A legal remedy, also judicial relief or a judicial remedy, is the means with which a court of law, usually in the exercise of civil law jurisdiction, enforces a right, imposes a penalty, or makes another court order to impose its will.

In common law jurisdictions and mixed civil-common law jurisdictions, the law of remedies distinguishes between a legal remedy (e.g. a specific amount of monetary damages) and an equitable remedy (e.g. injunctive relief or specific performance). Another type of remedy available in these systems is declaratory relief, where a court determines the rights of the parties to an action without awarding damages or ordering equitable relief.

In English and American jurisprudence, there is a legal maxim (albeit one sometimes honored in the breach) that for every right, there is a remedy; where there is no remedy, there is no right. That is, lawmakers claim to provide appropriate remedies to protect rights. This legal maxim was first enunciated by William Blackstone: "It is a settled and invariable principle in the laws of England, that every right when with-held must have a remedy, and every injury its proper redress."

New Deal

The New Deal was a series of programs, public work projects, financial reforms, and regulations enacted by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in the United States between 1933 and 1936. It responded to needs for relief, reform, and recovery from the Great Depression. Major federal programs included the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), the Civil Works Administration (CWA), the Farm Security Administration (FSA), the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933 (NIRA) and the Social Security Administration (SSA). They provided support for farmers, the unemployed, youth and the elderly. The New Deal included new constraints and safeguards on the banking industry and efforts to re-inflate the economy after prices had fallen sharply. New Deal programs included both laws passed by Congress as well as presidential executive orders during the first term of the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The programs focused on what historians refer to as the "3 Rs": relief for the unemployed and poor, recovery of the economy back to normal levels and reform of the financial system to prevent a repeat depression. The New Deal produced a political realignment, making the Democratic Party the majority (as well as the party that held the White House for seven out of the nine presidential terms from 1933 to 1969) with its base in liberal ideas, the South, traditional Democrats, big city machines and the newly empowered labor unions and ethnic minorities. The Republicans were split, with conservatives opposing the entire New Deal as hostile to business and economic growth and liberals in support. The realignment crystallized into the New Deal coalition that dominated presidential elections into the 1960s while the opposing conservative coalition largely controlled Congress in domestic affairs from 1937 to 1964.

Relief pitcher

In baseball and softball, a relief pitcher or reliever is a pitcher who enters the game after the starting pitcher is removed due to injury, ineffectiveness, fatigue, ejection, or for other strategic reasons, such as inclement weather delays or pinch hitter substitutions. Relief pitchers are further divided informally into various roles, such as closers, setup men, middle relief pitchers, left/right-handed specialists, and long relievers. Whereas starting pitchers usually rest several days before pitching in a game again due to the number of pitches thrown, relief pitchers are expected to be more flexible and typically pitch more games but with fewer innings pitched. A team's staff of relievers is normally referred to metonymically as a team's bullpen, which refers to the area where the relievers sit during games, and where they warm-up prior to entering the game.

Symptom

A symptom (from Greek σύμπτωμα, "accident, misfortune, that which befalls", from συμπίπτω, "I befall", from συν- "together, with" and πίπτω, "I fall") is a departure from normal function or feeling which is apparent to a patient, reflecting the presence of an unusual state, or of a disease. A symptom can be subjective or objective. Tiredness is a subjective symptom whereas cough or fever are objective symptoms. In contrast to a symptom, a sign is a clue to a disease elicited by an examiner or a doctor. For example, paresthesia is a symptom (only the person experiencing it can directly observe their own tingling feeling), whereas erythema is a sign (anyone can confirm that the skin is redder than usual). Symptoms and signs are often nonspecific, but often combinations of them are at least suggestive of certain diagnoses, helping to narrow down what may be wrong. In other cases they are specific even to the point of being pathognomonic.

The term is sometimes also applied to physiological states outside the context of disease, as for example when referring to "symptoms of pregnancy". Many people use the term sign and symptom interchangeably.

Terrain

Terrain or relief (also topographical relief) involves the vertical and horizontal dimensions of land surface. The term bathymetry is used to describe underwater relief, while hypsometry studies terrain relative to sea level. The Latin word terra (the root of terrain) means "earth."

In physical geography, terrain is the lay of the land. This is usually expressed in terms of the elevation, slope, and orientation of terrain features. Terrain affects surface water flow and distribution. Over a large area, it can affect weather and climate patterns.

The Great British Bake Off

The Great British Bake Off (also called Bake Off or GBBO) is a British television baking competition, produced by Love Productions, in which a group of amateur bakers compete against each other in a series of rounds, attempting to impress a group of judges with their baking skills, with a contestant being eliminated in each round, with the winner being selected from the contestants who reach the finals. The show's first episode was aired on 17 August 2010, with its first four series broadcast on BBC Two, until its growing popularity led the BBC to move it to BBC One for the next three series. After its seventh series, Love Productions signed a three-year deal with Channel 4 to produce the show for the broadcaster.The programme was originally presented by Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc, with judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood. Following its move to Channel 4, the current presenters are Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig, with Hollywood and Prue Leith as the judges. In chronological order, the winners are Edd Kimber, Joanne Wheatley, John Whaite, Frances Quinn, Nancy Birtwhistle, Nadiya Hussain, Candice Brown, Sophie Faldo and Rahul Mandal.

The show has become a significant part of British culture and is credited with reinvigorating interest in baking throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland, with many of its participants, including winners, having gone on to start a career based on bakery, while the BAFTA award-winning programme has spawned a number of specials and spin-off shows: a celebrity charity series in aid of Sport Relief/Comic Relief or Stand Up to Cancer; Junior Bake Off for young children (broadcast on the CBBC channel, then on the Channel 4 from 2019); after-show series An Extra Slice; and Bake Off: The Professionals for teams of pastry chefs.The show's format was used as the basis for two BBC Two series, The Great British Sewing Bee and The Great Pottery Throw Down. Under the title The Great British Baking Show, Bake Off has been shown in the United States and Canada. It also has appeared in other countries, and the format has been sold to television producers in many countries around the world, where local versions are made.

Topography

Topography is the study of the shape and features of land surfaces. The topography of an area could refer to the surface shapes and features themselves, or a description (especially their depiction in maps).

Topography is a field of geoscience and planetary science and is concerned with local detail in general, including not only relief but also natural and artificial features, and even local history and culture. This meaning is less common in the United States, where topographic maps with elevation contours have made "topography" synonymous with relief.

Topography in a narrow sense involves the recording of relief or terrain, the three-dimensional quality of the surface, and the identification of specific landforms. This is also known as geomorphometry. In modern usage, this involves generation of elevation data in digital form (DEM). It is often considered to include the graphic representation of the landform on a map by a variety of techniques, including contour lines, hypsometric tints, and relief shading.

Typhoon Haiyan

Typhoon Haiyan, known as Super Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines, was one of the most powerful tropical cyclones ever recorded. On making landfall, Haiyan devastated portions of Southeast Asia, particularly the Philippines. It is the deadliest Philippine typhoon on record, killing at least 6,300 people in that country alone. In terms of JTWC-estimated 1-minute sustained winds, Haiyan is tied with Meranti for being the strongest landfalling tropical cyclone on record. In January 2014, bodies were still being found.The thirtieth named storm, thirteenth typhoon, and fifth super typhoon of the 2013 Pacific typhoon season, Haiyan originated from an area of low pressure several hundred kilometers east-southeast of Pohnpei in the Federated States of Micronesia on November 2, 2013. Tracking generally westward, environmental conditions favored tropical cyclogenesis and the system developed into a tropical depression the following day. After becoming a tropical storm and attaining the name Haiyan at 00:00 UTC on November 4, the system began a period of rapid intensification that brought it to typhoon intensity by 18:00 UTC on November 5. By November 6, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) assessed the system as a Category 5-equivalent super typhoon on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane wind scale; the storm passed over the island of Kayangel in Palau shortly after attaining this strength.

Thereafter, Haiyan continued to intensify; at 12:00 UTC on November 7, the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) upgraded the storm's maximum ten-minute sustained winds to 230 km/h (145 mph), the highest in relation to the storm. The Hong Kong Observatory put the storm's maximum ten-minute sustained winds at 285 km/h (180 mph) prior to landfall in the central Philippines, while the China Meteorological Administration estimated the maximum two-minute sustained winds at the time to be around 78 m/s (280 km/h or 175 mph). At the same time, the JTWC estimated the system's one-minute sustained winds at 315 km/h (195 mph), unofficially making Haiyan the strongest tropical cyclone ever observed based on wind speed, a record which would then be surpassed by Hurricane Patricia in 2015 at 345 km/h (215 mph). Haiyan is also tied with Typhoon Meranti in 2016 as the second-strongest tropical cyclone in the Eastern Hemisphere by 1-minute sustained winds; several others have recorded lower central pressure readings. At 20:40 UTC on November 7, the eye of the typhoon made its first landfall in the Philippines at Guiuan, Eastern Samar at peak strength. Gradually weakening, the storm made five additional landfalls in the country before emerging over the South China Sea. Turning northwestward, the typhoon eventually struck northern Vietnam as a severe tropical storm on November 10. Haiyan was last noted as a tropical depression by the JMA on the following day.

The typhoon caused catastrophic destruction in the Visayas, particularly on Samar and Leyte. According to UN officials, about 11 million people were affected and many were left homeless.

Works Progress Administration

The Works Progress Administration (WPA; renamed in 1939 as the Work Projects Administration) was an American New Deal agency, employing millions of people (mostly unskilled men) to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads. It was established on May 6, 1935, by Executive Order 7034. In a much smaller project, Federal Project Number One, the WPA employed musicians, artists, writers, actors and directors in large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects. The four projects dedicated to these were: the Federal Writers’ Project (FWP), the Historical Records Survey (HRS), the Federal Theatre Project (FTP), the Federal Music Project (FMP), and the Federal Art Project (FAP). In the Historical Records Survey, for instance, many former slaves in the South were interviewed; these documents are of great importance for American history. Theater and music groups toured throughout America, and gave more than 225,000 performances. Archaeological investigations under the WPA were influential in the rediscovery of pre-Columbian Native American cultures, and the development of professional archaeology in the US.

Almost every community in the United States had a new park, bridge, or school that was constructed by the agency. The WPA's initial appropriation in 1935 was for $4.9 billion (about 6.7 percent of the 1935 GDP).Headed by Harry Hopkins, the WPA provided jobs and income to the unemployed during the Great Depression in the United States, while developing infrastructure to support the current and future society.

Above all, the WPA hired workers and craftsmen who were mainly employed in building streets. Thus, under the leadership of the WPA, more than 1 million km of streets and over 10,000 bridges were built, in addition to many airports and much housing.

The largest single project of the WPA was the Tennessee Valley Authority, which provided the impoverished Tennessee Valley with dams and waterworks to create an infrastructure for electrical power. Camp David, the presidential estate in Maryland often used for international meetings, and San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge were both constructed by the WPA.

At its peak in 1938, it provided paid jobs for three million unemployed men and women, as well as youth in a separate division, the National Youth Administration. Between 1935 and 1943, when the agency was disbanded, the WPA employed 8.5 million people. Most people who needed a job were eligible for employment in some capacity. Hourly wages were typically set to the prevailing wages in each area. Full employment, which was reached in 1942 and emerged as a long-term national goal around 1944, was not the goal of the WPA; rather, it tried to provide one paid job for all families in which the breadwinner suffered long-term unemployment."The stated goal of public building programs was to end the depression or, at least, alleviate its worst effects," sociologist Robert D. Leighninger asserted. "Millions of people needed subsistence incomes. Work relief was preferred over public assistance (the dole) because it maintained self-respect, reinforced the work ethic, and kept skills sharp."The WPA was a national program that operated its own projects in cooperation with state and local governments, which provided 10–30% of the costs. Usually the local sponsor provided land and often trucks and supplies, with the WPA responsible for wages (and for the salaries of supervisors, who were not on relief). WPA sometimes took over state and local relief programs that had originated in the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC) or Federal Emergency Relief Administration programs (FERA).It was liquidated on June 30, 1943, as a result of low unemployment due to the worker shortage of World War II. The WPA had provided millions of Americans with jobs for eight years.

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.