East

East

[eest]
East, Edward Murray, 1879-1938, American biologist, b. Du Quoin, Ill., grad. Univ. of Illinois (B.S., 1900; Ph.D., 1907). He served the agricultural experiment stations at the Univ. of Illinois and in Connecticut, and from 1909 he was professor of experimental plant morphology and of genetics at Harvard. His researches—in part for the Dept. of Agriculture—on the genetics and breeding of corn, tobacco, and potatoes were especially valuable; he was instrumental in revolutionizing American corn growing by applying inbred strain breeding. His works include Mankind at the Crossroads (1923) and Heredity and Human Affairs (1927); he contributed to and edited Biology in Human Affairs (1931).
officially Republic of Mozambique formerly Portuguese East Africa

Country, southeast coast of Africa. Area: 308,642 sq mi (799,379 sq km). Population (2006 est.): 19,687,000. Capital: Maputo. The great majority of the people are Bantu-speaking Africans. Ethnolinguistic groups include the Makua, Tsonga, Malawi, Shona, and Yao peoples. Languages: Portuguese (official), Bantu languages, Swahili. Religions: traditional beliefs, Christianity, Islam. Currency: metical. Mozambique may be divided into two broad regions: the lowlands in the south and the highlands in the north, separated by the Zambezi River. It has a centrally planned, developing economy based on agriculture, international trade, and light industry. Some industries were nationalized after 1975. Mozambique is a republic with one legislature; its head of state and government is the president. Inhabited in prehistoric times, it was settled by Bantu peoples circa the 3rd century AD. Arab traders occupied the coastal region from the 14th century, and the Portuguese controlled the area from the early 16th century. The slave trade later became an important part of the economy and, although outlawed in the mid-18th century, continued illegally. In the late 19th century, private trading companies began to administer parts of the inland areas. It became an overseas province of Portugal in 1951. An independence movement became active in the 1960s, and, after years of war, Mozambique was granted independence in 1975. A single-party state under Frelimo (the Mozambique Liberation Front), it was wracked by civil war in the 1970s and '80s. In 1990 a new constitution ended its Marxist collectivism and introduced privatization, a market economy, and multiparty government. A peace treaty was signed with the rebels in 1992, ending the civil war. The country's first multiparty elections were held two years later.

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or Mideast or Near East

Geographic region where Europe, Africa, and Asia meet. It is an unofficial and imprecise term that now generally encompasses the lands around the southern and eastern shores of the Mediterranean Sea—notably Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon, and Syria—as well as Iran, Iraq, and the countries of the Arabian Peninsula. Afghanistan, Libya, Turkey, and The Sudan are sometimes also included. The term was formerly used by Western geographers and historians to describe the region from the Persian Gulf to Southeast Asia; Near East is sometimes used to describe the same area.

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Former dependency of imperial Germany, corresponding to present-day Rwanda and Burundi, the continental portion of Tanzania, and a small section of Mozambique. German commercial agents arrived in 1884, and in 1891 the German imperial government took over administration of the area. During World War I, it was occupied by the British, who received a mandate to administer the greater part of it (Tanganyika Territory) by the Treaty of Versailles (1919). A smaller portion (Ruanda-Urundi) was entrusted to Belgium.

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(born Oct. 4, 1879, Du Quoin, Ill., U.S.—died Nov. 9, 1938, Boston, Mass.) U.S. plant geneticist, agronomist, and chemist. He finished high school at age 15 and received an M.S. in 1904. He was particularly interested in determining and controlling the protein and fat content of corn, both of which significantly influence its value as animal feed. His research, with that of George Harrison Shull, led to the development of modern-day hybrid corn. Commercial production of hybrid seed corn was made possible by the work of his student Donald F. Jones (1890–1963). East's work helped make possible studies in the field of population genetics.

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(born Oct. 4, 1879, Du Quoin, Ill., U.S.—died Nov. 9, 1938, Boston, Mass.) U.S. plant geneticist, agronomist, and chemist. He finished high school at age 15 and received an M.S. in 1904. He was particularly interested in determining and controlling the protein and fat content of corn, both of which significantly influence its value as animal feed. His research, with that of George Harrison Shull, led to the development of modern-day hybrid corn. Commercial production of hybrid seed corn was made possible by the work of his student Donald F. Jones (1890–1963). East's work helped make possible studies in the field of population genetics.

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or Turkestan

Historical region, Central Asia. This somewhat broad geographic region—situated between Siberia (Russia) to the north and Tibet (China), India, Afghanistan, and Iran to the south—derived its name from its inhabitants, who were predominantly of Turkic ancestry. The total area of more than 1,000,000 sq mi (2,600,000 sq km) was bisected by the Pamir and Tien Shan ranges, forming West and East Turkistan. West Turkistan, which included what is now Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and southern Kazakhstan, came under Russian rule in the 19th century. East Turkistan came to be included in what is now the Uygur Autonomous Region of Xinjiang.

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officially Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste

Country occupying the eastern half of the island of Timor, Southeast Asia. Bounded by the Timor Sea and by the western half of Timor, it also includes the enclave of Ambeno (surrounding the town of Pante Makasar on the northwestern coast of Timor) and the islands of Atauro (Kambing) and Jaco. Area: 5,639 square miles (14,604 square km). Population (2005 est.): 975,000. Capital: Dili. Languages: Tetum and Portuguese (both official). Religions: Christianity (predominantly Roman Catholic; also Protestant); also Islam, traditional beliefs. Currency: U.S. dollar. The Portuguese first settled on Timor in 1520 and were granted rule over Timor's eastern half in 1860. The Timor political party Fretilin declared East Timor independent in 1975 after Portugal withdrew its troops. It was invaded by Indonesian forces and annexed to Indonesia in 1976. The takeover, which resulted in the deaths of thousands of East Timorese during the next two decades, was disputed by the United Nations. In 1999 an independence referendum won overwhelmingly; though Indonesia officially recognized the referendum, anti-independence militias killed hundreds of people and sent thousands fleeing to the western part of the island before and after the vote. A UN-administered interim authority imposed order and oversaw elections, the promulgation of a constitution, and the return of refugees; East Timor became a sovereign nation in 2002.

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Administrative and geographic county (pop., 2001: 492,324), southeastern England. It is located on the English Channel; the county's administrative centre is in Lewes. A ridge of chalk hills, the South Downs, crosses the county along the coast; in the southeast the reclaimed marshes of Pevensey Levels have historically been an important entry point for invaders. Neolithic remains and an Iron Age hill fort have been found, as well as evidence of Roman occupation. The South Saxons came to dominate the area, and they were in turn subjugated by Wessex. In 1066 William of Normandy (see William I) landed at Pevensey and fought the Battle of Hastings. Along the coast, Hove, Brighton, Peacehaven, Seaford, Eastbourne, Bexhill, and Hastings form an ever-lengthening line of resorts.

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Navigable tidal strait in the U.S. linking Upper New York Bay with Long Island Sound in New York City. It separates Manhattan and the Bronx from Brooklyn and Queens. About 16 mi (26 km) long and 600–4,000 ft (200–1200 m) wide, it connects with the Hudson River via the Harlem River and Spuyten Duyvil Creek at the northern end of Manhattan Island. Roosevelt (formerly Welfare), Wards, Randalls, and Rikers islands are in the East River, which has numerous port facilities.

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German Ostpreussen

Historical region and former Prussian province, east of Pomerania. From 1815 it was known as East Prussia, part of the kingdom of Prussia, and in the 19th century it was a stronghold of Prussian Junkers, a military aristocracy. It was the scene of successful resistance against the Russians in World War I. Following the war, it was separated from the rest of Germany by the Polish Corridor (1919); it was reunited with the Reich by the German conquest of Poland in 1939. Between World War I and World War II, it was bounded to the north by the Baltic Sea, east by Lithuania, and south and west by Poland and the free city of Danzig (now Gdańsk, Pol.). Overrun by Soviet armies at the end of World War II, in 1945 it was divided between the Soviet Union and Poland.

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Trading company founded by Jean-Baptiste Colbert in 1664, and its successors, established to oversee French commerce with India, East Africa, and other territories of the Indian Ocean and the East Indies. In constant competition with the already-established Dutch East India Co., it mounted expensive expeditions that were often harassed by the Dutch. It also suffered in the French economic crash of 1720, and by 1740 the value of its trade with India was half that of the English East India Co. Its monopoly over French trade with India was ended in 1769, and it languished until its disappearance in the French Revolution.

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Trading company founded by the Dutch in 1602 to protect their trade in the Indian Ocean and to assist in their war of independence from Spain. The Dutch government granted it a trade monopoly in the waters between the Cape of Good Hope and the Straits of Magellan. Under the administration of forceful governors-general, it was able to defeat the British fleet and largely displace the Portuguese in the East Indies. It prospered through most of the 17th century but then began to decline as a trading and sea power; it was dissolved in 1799. Seealso East India Co., French East India Co.

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or English East India Co.

English chartered company formed for trade with East and Southeast Asia and India, incorporated in 1600. It began as a monopolistic trading body, establishing early trading stations at Surat, Madras (now Chennai), Bombay (Mumbai), and Calcutta (Kolkata). Trade in spices was its original focus; this broadened to include cotton, silk, and other goods. In 1708 it merged with a rival and was renamed the United Co. of Merchants of England Trading to the East Indies. Becoming involved in politics, it acted as the chief agent of British imperialism in India in the 18th–19th century, exercising substantial power over much of the subcontinent. The company's activities in China in the 19th century served as a catalyst for the expansion of British influence there; its financing of the tea trade with illegal opium exports led to the first Opium War (1839–42). From the late 18th century it gradually lost both commercial and political control; its autonomy diminished after two acts of Parliament (1773, 1774) established a regulatory board responsible to Parliament, though the act gave the company supreme authority in its domains. It ceased to exist as a legal entity in 1873. See also Dutch East India Co., French East India Co.

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Russian Mys Deshneva

Cape, extreme eastern Russia. It is the easternmost point of the Chukchi Peninsula and of the entire Eurasian landmass. It is separated from Cape Prince of Wales in Alaska by the Bering Strait (see Bering Sea).

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Traditional region of England. It consists of the historic counties of Norfolk and Suffolk and parts of Cambridgeshire and Essex, and its traditional centre is the city of Norwich. The easternmost area in England, it has been settled for thousands of years. Colchester, the oldest recorded town in England, was important in pre-Roman and Roman times. East Anglia was one of the kingdoms of Anglo-Saxon England, and it was ruled by Danes in the 9th century. During the medieval period it was known for its woolen products, but the region's modern economy is predominantly agricultural. Along the coast are many important fishing ports and holiday resorts.

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or Lower Canada

Region of Canada now known as Quebec. In 1791–1841 it was known as Lower Canada and in 1841–67 as Canada East. Populated mainly by French settlers who wanted to preserve their distinctive identity and cultural traditions, it was reluctant to join the proposed confederation with Canada West. It finally agreed to confederation in 1867, providing that it would remain a territorial and governmental unit in which French Canadians would have an electoral majority.

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Territory under former British control, Africa. British penetration of the area began at Zanzibar in the late 19th century. In 1888 the British East Africa Co. established claims to territory in what is now Kenya. British protectorates were subsequently established over the sultanate of Zanzibar and the kingdom of Buganda (see Uganda). In 1919 Britain was awarded the former German territory of Tanganyika as a League of Nations mandate. All these territories achieved political independence in the 1960s.

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East is a direction in geography. It is one of the four cardinal directions or compass points, opposite of west and at right angles to north and south. East is the direction toward which the Earth rotates about its axis, and therefore the general direction from which the Sun appears to rise.

Etymology

The etymology of east is from a Proto-Indo-European language word for dawn, *hausos. Cf. Latin aurora and Greek eōs. Eostre, a Germanic goddess of dawn, might have been a personification of both dawn and the cardinal point.

By convention, an ordinary terrestrial map is oriented so the right side is east. This convention dates from the Renaissance. Many medieval maps were oriented with the Orient (the East) east at the top, which is the source of the verb orient.

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