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Karl Marx was born in 1818, in the Rheinish city of Trier, the son of a successful lawyer. He studied law and philosophy at the universities of Bonn and Berlin, completing his doctorate in 1841. In Paris three years later, Marx was introduced to the study of political economy by a former fellow student, Frederick Engels. In 1848 they collaborated in writing The Communist Manifesto. Expelled from Prussia in the same year, Marx took up residence first in Paris and then in London where, in 1867, he published his magnus opus Capital. A co-founder of the International Workingmen's Association in 1864, Marx died in London in 1883. Frederick Engels was born in 1820, in the German city of Barmen, Brought up as a devout Calvinist he moved to England in 1842 to work in his father's Manchester textile firm. After joining the fight against the counter revolution in Germany in 1848 he returned to Manchester and the family business, finally settling there in 1850. In subsequent years he provided financial support for Marx and edited the second and third volumes of Capital. He died whilst working on the fourth volume in 1895. Eric Hobsbawm is Emeritus Professor of History at Birkbeck College, University of London. His many books include The Age of Revolution, The Age of Capital, The Age of Empire and the recently published The Age of Extremes.