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9780140286908 / 014028690X

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About the book:

With a New Preface on the End of the World

Charles Panati, America's favorite gatherer of origins, now offers the last word on how people, places, and things of all sorts have met their ends through the centuries. From famous presidents to frightening epidemics, from ancient extinctions to vanished vogues, from bizarre last wills to the death styles of the rich and renowned, The Browser's Book of Endings presents the amusing, the surprising, and the generally little-known stories behind the terminations of practically everything and everybody. Illustrated with more than 100 drawings, diagrams, and archival photographs, with an extensive reference list and index, this is the most readable and complete compendium of deliciously trivial and profound facts about history's endings.

1. What were Oscar Wilde's last words?
2. What caused the extinction of the Dodo bird?
3. How did Belle Starr meet her death?
4. Who was the last great castrata (castrated male soprano singer)?
5. When was drawing and quartering banned in England?

***

Answers: 1. "I am dying as I've lived: beyond my means." 2. Introduction of Dutch colonials and their animals to Mauritius. 3. Ambushed and shot twice by her son and sometime lover. 4. Giovanni Velluti (1780-1761). 5. 1870.

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