Moustache

Dean Acheson

On leaving his post as secretary of state,...

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Ansel Adams

During his early years Adams studied the piano...

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John Barrymore

When the filming of A Bill of Divorcement...

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Sir Thomas Beecham

Sir Thomas Beecham was traveling in a...

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Robert Benchley

Benchley was attending the Broadway premiere...

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Junius Brutus Booth

“You’re such a wonderful actor, Mr. Booth,”...

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Johannes Brahms

As a celebrated composer, Brahms conducted his...

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Martin Buber

Addressing an audience of priests, Martin...

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Samuel Butler

“Promise me solemnly,” I said to her as she...

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George Cadbury

When King George V and Queen Mary visited the...

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Andrew Carnegie

Andrew Carnegie was a generous supporter of...

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William Cecil

Traveling to a confirmation ceremony, the...

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Charlie Chaplin

The playwright Charles MacArthur had been...

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Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor

When Hernando Cortéz, the celebrated explorer...

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G.K. Chesterton

Chesterton’s mind was so preoccupied that he...

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George Clemenceau

Clemenceau loathed flying and always avoided...

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Grover Cleveland

Cleveland, though constantly at loggerheads...

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Charles Townsend Copeland

For many years Copeland used a couple of...

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Croesus

Deliberating whether to attack the Persians,...

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Cyrus the Great

On one occasion Cyrus reprimanded his son,...

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Salvador Dalí

Dalí once took his pet ocelot with him...

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Charles Dickens

When Charles Dickens moved into Tavistock...

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Diogenes

By constant flattery the hedonistic...

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John Donne

Donne secured the post of secretary to Sir...

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Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Joking with Doyle during a rehearsal for one...

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Albrecht Dürer

The story is told that Dürer and another...

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Albert Einstein

Einstein and an assistant, having finished a...

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Eric the Red

The terrain of Greenland is covered mainly...

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Douglas Fairbanks Sr.

As he was driving back to his mansion,...

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William Faulkner

Faulkner was on a shooting expedition with...

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Ferdinand Foch

A young officer has been disciplined by his...

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St. Francis of Assisi

The popularity of the Nativity scene, one of...

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Francisco Franco

Franco had remarkable powers of endurance and...

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Mahatma Gandhi

Gandhi gave a lecture to a select gathering of...

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W.S. Gilbert

Soon after the death of a well-known composer...

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Ulysses S. Grant

Undistinguished and often shabby in appearance...

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Dashiell Hammett

During the eight years that Hammett worked as...

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Nathaniel Hawthorne, novelist

Hawthorne’s son, Julian, was also a...

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Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway’s son Patrick asked his father to...

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John Huston

The word came by phone when he was in the...

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Andrew Jackson

When Congress assembled on December 7, 1829,...

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Rudyard Kipling

A newspaper to which Kipling subscribed...

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Wilfrid Lawson

Lunching in a pub before a matinee performance...

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Robert E. Lee

Toward the end of the Civil War, when meat was...

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Robert Todd Lincoln

Robert Todd Lincoln was home from Harvard on a...

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David Lloyd George

Lloyd George was once approached by explorer...

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Thomas Mann

Mann was introduced to an American writer of...

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Michelangelo - self portrait

One day Michelangelo happened to overhear a...

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Charles Edward Montague

At the outbreak of World War I, Montague dyed...

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Bernard L. Montgomery

In 1944 Alan Brooke, chief of the imperial...

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Gamal Abdel Nasser

With emotions high on the night before the...

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Eugene O’Neill

O’Neill always strongly objected to cutting...

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Otto, Archduke of Austria

The archduke submitted to a medical...

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Luciano Pavarotti

This story was told by composer Lalo Schifrin...

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François Rabelais

It is said that Rabelais made the following...

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Theodore Roosevelt

Shortly before he left the White House,...

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George Santayana

When Santayana came into a sizable legacy, he...

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Albert Schweitzer

On a train journey in the American Midwest,...

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Peter Sellers

Blake Edwards, who directed Sellers in the...

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George Bernard Shaw

At a performance given by an Italian string...

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William Tecumseh Sherman

After the Mexican War, Sherman was sent by...

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Socrates

Knowing the frugality of Socrates’ way of life...

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King Solomon

Two prostitutes living alone in the same house...

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John Steinbeck

During his later years, when he was famous,...

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Rex Stout

An old midwestern farmer once ponderously...

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Igor Stravinsky

Stravinsky wrote a ballet for Billy Rose’s...

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Willie Sutton

Willie Sutton, one of the most famous bank...

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William Howard Taft

On one occasion Taft, stranded at a small...

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William Thomson, Lord Kelvin

Kelvin worked out an improved method for...

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Titian self-portrait

When very old, Titian finished one of his...

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Arturo Toscanini

Every Christmas, composer Giacomo Puccini...

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Mark Twain

Mark Twain loved to brag about his hunting and...

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Rudolf Virchow

Appendectomy first became widely and safely...

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Clifton Webb

Actor Clifton Webb was devoted to his mother,...

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H.G. Wells

On leaving a Cambridge party, Wells...

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Harry Wheatcroft

Wheatcroft was known for his flamboyant dress...

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James Whistler

A snobbish Bostonian approached Whistler at a...

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Andrew Dickson White

A stickler for academic excellence, White...

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Tennessee Williams

Newspaper reports in 1961 announced that...

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Alexander Woollcott

Childless himself, the redoubtable Alexander...

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The Wright Brothers

Weary of explaining the principles of their...

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Florenz Ziegfeld - 1928

Ziegfeld once offered Gracie Allen $750 a week...

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