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balance of power

A political policy in which countries attempt to preserve peace by keeping an equal military and economic status.

Balfour Declaration

A promise made by British Prime Minister Balfour to create a homeland for the Jewish people.


A business that exchanges currencies, makes loans, and keeps the money of individual depositors.

Baron de Montesquieu

(1689-1755) Enlightenment thinker from France who wrote a book called, The Spirit of the Laws in 1748. In his book, Montesquieu describes what he considers to be the best government. He states that government should divide itself according to its powers, creating a Judicial, Legislative, and Executive branch. Montesquieu explained that under this system each branch would Check and Balance the others, which would help protect the people's liberty.


The exchange of goods or services for other goods or services.

Batista, Fulgencio

(1901-1973) Cuban president from 1940 to 1944 and 1952 to 1959. He was responsible for some reforms in the country before leaving office for the first time. Later, he overthrew the legitimate government and ruled as a dictator until he was forced from office by Fidel Castro.

Battle of Britain

The massive air war against Great Britain by the Nazi war machine in Germany. Nearly nightly bombings occurred between summer of 1940 and summer of 1941 before German withdrew. Great Britain fought alone during this year and never gave up.


A body of water partly surrounded by land but having a wide outlet to the sea.


Date designation meaning Before Common Era, or more than two thousand years ago.

Belief System

Belief in a reverence for a supernatural power or powers reguarded as creator and governor of the universe.

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