THE OVAL OFFICE
Supposedly symbolizing democracy, the White House Oval Office dates back to George Washington, whose Philadelphia home had a similar room. Here he held levees in a circle so that all were at an equal distance from the president. The White House Oval Office is the work of President Taft, who first occupied it in 1909. Over the years, in photographs and on film, the Oval Office has become one of the world's most famous political stages. President Clinton's infamous dalliance with Monica Lewinsky led wags to rename the room the "Oral Office."
Mark Twain (1835-1910)