Submitted by AutoModerator t3_11ojmfz in history

Welcome to our History Questions Thread!

This thread is for all those history related questions that are too simple, short or a bit too silly to warrant their own post.

So, do you have a question about history and have always been afraid to ask? Well, today is your lucky day. Ask away!

Of course all our regular rules and guidelines still apply and to be just that bit extra clear:

Questions need to be historical in nature. Silly does not mean that your question should be a joke. r/history also has an active discord server where you can discuss history with other enthusiasts and experts



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Kolkom t1_jbsux81 wrote

What's the current state of the art regarding the translation of Linear A? Are people actively working on it and how does that work look like on a daily basis?


elmonoenano t1_jbyi0tg wrote

I think the main issue is they just don't have enough examples of it. So it's mostly looking for more of it, hopefully with either new symbols or in different arrangements or with some kind of context clue.

There's a fun book about the translation of Linear B by Margalit Fox called the Riddle of the Labyrinth. It shows what what kind of volume of symbols is needed to account for things like if the writing is gendered or to account for different people's writing styles.


turbodogger t1_jbswcf3 wrote

How common were medieval communes that had liberty/some degree of equality for peasants and were generally independent from the lords/feudal system?

Were market economies and prosperity associated with them?


Thibaudborny t1_jbtaarx wrote

Very uncommon from the late Carolingian era onward. One of the more notable ones that survived until around 1500 is that of Ditmarshen at the border of Denmark and the HRE.


quantdave t1_jcqg3v7 wrote

Degrees of peasant obligation varied even within the manor or village: while in theory everyone was subject to someone else up to the king, in practice a significant rural minority were free of most or at least some of the more oppressive burdens of villein status, though still subject to universal charges,

Crucial to the system (though much abused) was the role of "custom": a lord couldn't just change the arrangements without a legal cover, and the evolution of estates through successive periods of greater or lesser unfreedom meant that neighbouring holdings might operate under quite different terms, while the need to people newly-reclaimed land with capable tenants might result in milder conditions even as manorialism matured.

Was there a link with market exchange and prosperity? I'd say yes, because when we can identify economic divergence among western regions it's in the areas of least oppression that we later tend to find the economic frontrunners, Holland with its extensive reclamation from the sea being of course the most striking case.

Having more time to attend to your holding and having to surrender less of your produce or limited cash seem likely to have stimulated innovation and commercial engagement. The reverse may paradoxically have applied in a later period when taxes are said to have acted as an incentive to greater effort and output, but at this stage of modest surpluses the development of a commercial sector and freedom to adopt new techniques were probably of greater value.


tatramatra t1_jc1hbdo wrote

"Peasant" is a very general term that have very little social meaning. Peasants were people who grew food (including raising animals) and they could include anything from a slave to rich free farmer who could himself own slaves and servants -and anything in between, depending on time period and location.

In popular culture Medieval "peasant" is associated with "serf", but that's completely wrong association.

Medieval European societies were very hierarchical, starting with very strong hierarchy in the family. "Equality" basically did not exist at all anywhere, it could only exist between people of the same social status, that is you could find it in institutions like guilds (and then only to a degree) and not places and communities.


WeatherChannelDino t1_jbsxv8z wrote

I'm trying to learn more about trade and trade routes and came across some really interesting ones (amber trade from Lithuania, tin trade in the Near East, the Indian Ocean trade network). There are some obvious ones as well I haven't looked into (Columbian exchange, Trans Saharan trade routes, Mediterranean trade routes) but what are some less well known but still cool ones y'all know of?


Skookum_J t1_jbtchmo wrote

Couple interesting ones.

Poverty Point, is a site in Louisiana, dating to around 3200 years ago. Stone artifacts have been found at the site made with stone from as far as Ohio or Iowa. The site is also known for these strange little baked clay objects, known as Poverty Point Objects. No one's quite sure what they're for. But they were traded all over the Eastern US. Some have been found as far away as Florida.

Another cool one is Cahokia. Located in Missouri, and dating back about 1000 years. The site was a major trade hub. Getting Obsidian from as far as the Rockies, shells from the Gulf Coast, and copper from the Great Lakes. And they produced the really intricate copper plates that were traded as far as Wisconsin and Florida.


WeatherChannelDino t1_jbtqfr0 wrote

I remember watching a video about Cahokia and I'm super interested in them. Admittedly I don't watch as many history videos or read as much as I should but I do wanna learn more.


BuffaloOk7264 t1_jbucrp2 wrote

Spiro Mounds in Oklahoma on the Arkansas River traded in Bois dArc blanks for building bows.


blaspheminCapn t1_jbvdaht wrote

Many of the North American roads and trade routes were formed by migrating animals who traveled to find salt. Some of these routes are major roads and highways now.


WeatherChannelDino t1_jbvdn7g wrote

Know what I can search for to learn more?


blaspheminCapn t1_jbvj4nv wrote


Author Jared Diamond might have some notes about trade routes, especially the book Collapse.


elmonoenano t1_jbyi67m wrote

If you read the Diamond book, you should also read Questioning Collapse where various experts in the fields Diamond looks at in Collapse explain the mistakes he makes.


blaspheminCapn t1_jbz1wa0 wrote

Neat! Thank you! It's fantastic to have a contrary look at his assertions. What are a few that stood to you?


elmonoenano t1_jbzkthr wrote

I think just the fundamental argument of the book is important b/c Diamond made the same mistake in GG&S about how societies actually exist. They don't just suddenly disappear. They are constantly adapting and changing. The Conquest of Mexico didn't happen in the short time span Diamond portrayed it as happening, it took hundreds of years, fighting was ongoing in the Yucatan until the 20th century and the state still has issues with control there and in Chiapas and the hills of Oaxaca. He takes the same kind of assumptions throughout Collapse and they just don't pan out when you look at the peoples who these experts still are working with, even though they are supposed to have "disappeared."


blaspheminCapn t1_jc0pu9p wrote

But the Easter Island was the bedrock of that book, and there weren't any people there, correct?

I mean, when he says imagine being the last guy to cut down the last tree, that's Shel Silverstein level there.


tatramatra t1_jc1gf1c wrote

Tin trade from Ireland in to Mediterranean dating back perhaps to Bronze Age. Ancient Greeks called Ireland "The Tin Island/s".


its_the_abdulwahab t1_jbt7cdb wrote

One of the most obvious one, which to my surprise you have missed here is "The Silk Route", from China to the West and Middel East crossing through Central Asia. Purpose of this route was to trade Silk from China to other parts of the world at that time.


yns322 t1_jbt3o8u wrote

How was decayed or abscessed teeth treated back then? Before antibiotics?


jezreelite t1_jbtu75j wrote

Root canal therapy wasn't invented until the mid-18th century, so the only real treatment for severely decayed or abscessed teeth was to pull them.

In Europe, this was most often performed by a barber-surgeon and painkiller was limited to a swig of alcohol, if that. This is a quote from a popular history book about Catherine the Great's experience with dentists of her time:

>One day as a teenager, after suffering weeks from a decayed tooth, the future Catherine the Great agreed to have it pulled. A “surgeon” came to her room armed with a pair of pliers and yanked out the offending tooth—and a chunk of jawbone as well. Blood gushed all over her gown. The swelling and pain were so shocking that Catherine did not leave her room for a month, and even when the swelling went down, the dentist’s five fingers were imprinted in blue and yellow bruises at the bottom of her cheek.


JenorRicafort t1_jc8x5g4 wrote

>How was decayed or abscessed teeth treated back then? Before antibiotics?

In ancient times, people used various natural remedies to treat dental problems. According to a study published in the Journal of the American Dental Association, ancient Egyptian texts suggest the use of various plants, including myrrh, cinnamon, and frankincense, to treat dental pain and infections (

In the Middle Ages, barbers often performed dental procedures, including tooth extractions and bloodletting. The use of silver as a filling material was also recorded during this time (

In the 18th century, extraction was the most common treatment for decayed or abscessed teeth. Some people even resorted to tying a string around the affected tooth and pulling it out themselves (

In the mid-19th century, arsenic was sometimes used to kill the nerve in the affected tooth, allowing for its removal without causing pain. This was known as "devitalization," but it was a dangerous practice that could lead to serious health complications (

Overall, the treatment of dental problems before the discovery of antibiotics was often crude and sometimes even dangerous.


elmonoenano t1_jbzilwp wrote

There's a good paper on the NIH's site about this. Abscessed teeth was an incredibly deadly condition. The paper cites evidence from the 1500s that put it as the 5th or 6th leading cause of death. Basically if you didn't get the tooth removed and cleaned early, it was a serious life threatening condition.


quantdave t1_jcq9o5i wrote

Indeed, I remember encountering as cause of death the single word "Teeth" in London's 17th-century Bills of Mortality - around 6% of deaths as late as the 1690s.


genesiss23 t1_jbthdwl wrote

Prior to sugar becoming commonplace in the Renaissance, tooth decay was uncommon.


Turbulent-Total1928 t1_jbtai1t wrote

Where can I find the logs and recordings of Henry II of England? We are trying to locate the missing location of Battle of Myriokephalon on 1176.


Thibaudborny t1_jbtc1mz wrote

Out of curiosity, why do you need Henry II's records? The battle saw no involvement of English forces, are you hoping to find correspondence about it?


Turbulent-Total1928 t1_jbuwdn4 wrote

Thank you for your enthusiasm.Byzantine Emperor Manuel I Komnenos contacts or tries to contact to Henry II about the war with a letter to Henry II. In the letter, Manuel I Komnenos says that he also sends ambassadors with the letter. But, we don't know if this letter even reached out to the Henry II. If the letter reached, there is a high chance of finding registered documents about it, and this can lead us to some new informations to pinpoint the exact location. Sadly, there are only few sources to gather information about this war, and none of them gives the exact place of the war. Due to the lack of ground survey about this matter, many cities claims that this war happened in their territory. If we can find the logs, we maybe can find the true location of this war.


Speneyj t1_jbt5zex wrote

What are the origins of natives in the americas?


mouse_8b t1_jbtd0fs wrote

Disputed. The safest theory is they crossed the Bering Strait on foot when it was dry. It looks like this actually happened a few times. However, there are some really old artifacts in South America that question that timeline, because it would mean people had to cross from Asia and then get to South America really fast.

There's also a theory that they used small boats to travel along the shore from Asia, along the Bering Strait when it was not fully flooded, and down the western coast of America.

The book 1491 does a good job of covering the different theories.


Speneyj t1_jbtfmwq wrote

I had read stuff about middle eastern dialects and similarities in cultural behaviors. Any solid resources and theories regarding migration from that region?


mouse_8b t1_jbtgi0i wrote

No. I haven't read anything about that. All the genetic evidence points to Eastern Asia. North-East Asian genetics makes sense for the land bridge. South-East Asian genetics contributes to the boat theory.

For cultural similarities, I'd chalk that up to coincidence. People are people, so I can accept some similar behaviors and beliefs emerging in different places.


elmonoenano t1_jbzi7i4 wrote

So, this is a fringe theory from the late 1800s that Mormons basically made up out of whole cloth to show that the Book of Mormon had some historical basis. It was never taken seriously outside those circles. When people started actually studying the genetics of Native American peoples and their languages it proved there's no evidence at all. All the genetic and linguistic evidence points back to the Altai mountain area.


Skookum_J t1_jbtgb15 wrote

Based on Genetic evidence, current running theory is they split from the people of Eastern Siberia about 30,000 years ago.

Most accepted theory right now is they crossed Beringia, a stretch of land that was exposed when the sea levels were much lower during the last glacial maximum. They then, were isolated in Beringia & Alaska for a few thousand years, before they made it past the ice sheets down to the rest of the Americas.

The exact method & route of getting past the ice sheets is up to a bit of debate. Old theory was a route through Canada down to the Midwest that opened about 13,000 years ago. but sites like Monte Verde, Page Ladson, Cooper's Ferry, and many more have been found that pre date the opening of that path.

So a different route has been hypothesized. The Coastal Migration hypothesis is that about 18,000 years ago, the Cordilleran ice sheet receded a bit exposing a chain of islands along the west coast of Canada. Using boats, or rafts, the people expanded down the coast, island hopping, following the Kelp highway.

But this Kelp highway theory has recently come under question as well. Footprints found at White Sands have been dated to around 22,000 years ago. Too early for the coastal route to have been viable. the dating of these foot prints is still in question. But if accurate, a new theory will have to be worked out on how people got from Beringia to the rest of the Americas.


its_the_abdulwahab t1_jbtacw3 wrote

One theory suggests that during the Ice Age (where everything on Earth was frozen–even the oceans) was the time when some of the hunter gatherer or nomadic tribes from Serbia (now in Russia) crossed the Bering Strait (A strait between the eastern end of Russia and the Western part of Alaska, today)

{Strait:- A narrow passage of water connecting two seas.} (

They crossed this strait unknowingly in search of food, as this is what the tribes whould do every now and then in order to survive at that time. They would relocate time to time setting camp from one place to another hunting and gathering food for their survival, hence nomadic (as farming was not known at that time hence the main source of food for the humans were other animals–more specifically meat. Even if farming was known at that time, it would have been really difficult to grow anything given the situation).

Then when the time passed, eventually the Ice Age ended and the oceans were back to being watery/liquid as they are. The people who already crossed didn't have any way back nor did they remember any way back, plus even the boats/ships were not invented at that time to cross huge bodies of water–provided if a question arises in your mind that "why didn't they use boats".

So these people eventually ended up settled in the Americas and became native to it.

This is as simple as I could explain. But if you want deep information regarding this then you can search it on YouTube, where you can easily learn more about it with visuals.


TigRaine86 t1_jbtbsgo wrote

Yes... the Kolyma woman sharing close DNA with Native Americans really helps this theory along. -a Native American


Alternative-Bee-4367 t1_jbtqkoe wrote

Why when the scientists divided the continents didn't consider Europe and Asia as one continent? And who made this division any way ?


MeatballDom t1_jbvdghu wrote

Your confusion on this makes sense, because there is no universal agreement on the number of continents.

You'll learn a number in school, but not all schools are going by the same system. There can be as many as seven, and as few as four continents. The main disagreements come down to the Americas, and Europe, Asia (and even Africa). There's no wrong way to divide them though. If you view a continent as one continual landmass, then: America, Eurasia, or Afro-Eurasia are all totally acceptable.

How else can they be viewed, and why? Well, a large part of viewing them as distinct and separate comes down to cultural views. With Eurasia there has been a strong divide between East and West since antiquity. While Greeks, and Romans, both made conquests into the East, these territories have always been harder to hold because of the large extent of land and the amount of powers that traditionally have existed, which also means it's been harder to extend cultural imperialism into the region, which makes them different. They would then view them as "the other" and othering cultures is incredibly common. Whether it's Persia, or later the Ottomans, there's a strong "us" vs "them" in history.

Historians and sociologists have long looked at this phenomenon, and works like Edward Said's Orientalism brought the problematic nature of these views to the forefront of academia in the 70s, which has resulted in some change in academia at least, but there are still cultural hangarounds.

Funnily enough, it's the opposite in regards to the Americas which was seen as one continent for quite some time, and the US would lay claim over the influence (to put it very kindly) of the entire hemisphere with the Monroe Doctrine. But, by the middle to end of the 20th century you see a shift where there is a desire to disconnect from (what we would call) South America, and a desire to other them. And while Canadians might not like being called American because of the term's association with the USA, people in the southern countries can get annoyed with the term's more popular meaning in English because they see themselves as American because everyone on the/both continent/s are by their nature American.

In short: there's no wrong way to view the number of continents, the separations other than just connected landmass are mainly due to geopolitics, historical isolation, culture, and othering.


wegofishin t1_jbvxscn wrote

I wonder often what people with bad vision did before glasses were readily available. Just die off?


MeatballDom t1_jbwbxhu wrote

If it was evident that they couldn't see (blindness was very evident) they might be exposed (abandoned and left to die). The extent of how often exposure actually happened, and what its actual intentions were, is debated though, but it is something that pops up often in common myth (Moses, Romulus, etc).

But then you have to consider what we might actually use glasses for today. Not everyone is near or totally blind, most people just need them for things like reading road signs while driving, or reading books. But, in antiquity these things might not have been as necessary (especially driving). So a lot of these people would have lived fairly normal lives.

And once you lived past a certain age, you were expected to live a life into old age, so teeth would fall out, eyes would weaken, and other parts of the body stopped working as well just as they do today. But you would stay as part of the family, live with them, and be taken care of.

As for things to help people read, certain crystals, and glass, can magnify things (hence a magnifying glass) and these things were known and used for reading and other purposes since antiquity.


phillipgoodrich t1_jc00v9y wrote

Couching cataracts appears to be as old as civilization, and is recorded in cultures in both the Greco-Roman and Indian ancient civilizations. Experts in this technique could apply orbital pressure and dislodge a clouded lens into the posterior chamber, thus restoring a modicum of vision. Jesus pulled off this maneuver in Mark 8: 22-26.


phillipgoodrich t1_jcjuia2 wrote

By the way, that would hurt like bloody hell for about 24 hours, during and after.


elmonoenano t1_jbzk3v3 wrote

Unless you were extremely blind, before the industrial age it wasn't all that important. You don't need to see all that great to plow a furrow or swing a scythe or to watch for stray animals, etc. Most people didn't read very much, if at all. If you couldn't see well you wouldn't be apprenticed into a trade where it mattered if you weren't a farmer, and most people were farmers.


JenorRicafort t1_jc8scgb wrote

>I wonder often what people with bad vision did before glasses were readily available.

Before the invention of glasses, people with bad vision had limited options for correcting their eyesight. Here are some historical methods that were used:

  • Squinting: Some people with mild to moderate myopia (near-sightedness) could compensate for their blurred distance vision by squinting, which temporarily improves the focus of the eye.
  • Using Magnifying Glasses: Magnifying glasses have been around since the 13th century, and they were sometimes used as a crude form of corrective lenses by people with presbyopia (age-related farsightedness). They could also be used for specific tasks, such as reading small print.
  • Improvised Lenses: In ancient Rome, the philosopher Seneca reportedly used a glass globe filled with water to magnify text. Later on, in the Middle Ages, people would sometimes use convex or concave gems or crystals to create makeshift lenses.
  • Seeking Help from Others: People with poor eyesight may have relied on others to read and write for them or to guide them around. This could include family members, servants, or professional scribes.

Eminence_grizzly t1_jbwhvuw wrote

Were there many examples in history when a Shia dynasty ruled a country with a Sunni majority (or vice versa)? If so, were there any revolts on a religious basis?


TheBattler t1_jbwm5ft wrote

Fatimid Dynasty Egypt was a Shia dynasty ruling a Sunni majority but I can't recall any revolts by the Sunnis


Thibaudborny t1_jbwo60u wrote

There were a few, but most revolts were about taxation/power struggles. The Fatimids were not to heavy on the proselytizing.


GSilky t1_jbzzbtz wrote

IIRC the later Persian kingdoms like the safarids had majority Sunni populations.


Thibaudborny t1_jc5ococ wrote

Daylamis and Buyids, too. The Safavids, however, were those who'd push for the active conversion, which was somewhat of a novelty.


Different_Fruit_1229 t1_jc0igw6 wrote

Do you think there is enough info about Genghis Khan for a final project? I am in 9th grade, so it shouldn’t be very hard, but I need to say his birth, upbringing, early life, accomplishments, setbacks, controversies, and demise in a biography.


tatramatra t1_jc1cogv wrote

There is plenty of written sources about him and he's one of the better known historical figures. Starting with so called Secret History of Mongols.


Frodoar t1_jc17fcp wrote

Oh yes. Listen to the Hardcore History on the Mongol Empire. Don't plagiarize, though. Absorb the story and write it.


Rusty_Shakalford t1_jbt61z0 wrote

What happened to the indigenous population of the Jewish Autonomous Oblast when it was formed by the Soviet Union?

Been on a kick lately reading about the formation, rise, and downfall (at least as a hotspot of Jewish culture) of the JAO but this is something I haven’t been able to find any info about. There must have been people already living there when the Soviets decided to create the territory. Was curious if there was any response to suddenly finding out the new designation of the land they were on.


montanunion t1_jbtcbhy wrote

The Jewish population of the JAO was never more than 25% and most Jews who moved there didn't stay for long (nowadays the Jewish population is below 1% - and the Oblast has existed for less than 100 years now).

In the area, it's kind of hard to tell who the "Indigenous population" are exactly (just like with the rest of Europe/Asia, because the term usually involves a distinct population group being colonised), but the majority of the Oblast was always non-Jewish, even when the Soviet Union tried to encourage Jews to settle there.

It was a relatively undeveloped area and the Soviet Union had hoped to bring in people to develop agriculture there and thought that they could find something to do with the Jews as a sort of 2 for 1 solution.


Rusty_Shakalford t1_jbtnp9f wrote

> because the term usually involves a distinct population group being colonised

I mean, is that not relevant here? Siberia was colonized by Russia at around the same time, and using many of the same methods, as the British, French, and Spanish were using in North America. In this case the Indigenous population would be whatever native Siberians were living there before Russian settlers came. With respect to the whole “De-Russification” idea the Soviets were into early on, the germ of my original post was wondering how that played in the JAO. For example, were the indigenous people there offered land elsewhere? Or were they intended to be integrated in some way?

Although even for Russian settlers I’d be interested what exactly the Soviet government told them. Was there pushback to the idea that their area was marked for Jewish settlement? Was the government plan to move them elsewhere eventually? I mean it’s entirely possible the government was winging it and hoping the details would sort themselves out, but I’m really curious what the long term plan was.


montanunion t1_jbtzah9 wrote

> Siberia was colonized by Russia at around the same time, and using many of the same methods, as the British, French, and Spanish were using in North America. In this case the Indigenous population would be whatever native Siberians were living there before Russian settlers came.

I think in many ways it's much less comparable to the British, French and Spanish colonialization of North America and more like the European expansions within Europe (for example France with Alsace or Spain with the Basque country). The area of the JAO for example was under Chinese control (as part of Manchuria) until the mid-1800s. After that, it came to Imperial Russia, who settled Cossacks from Transbaikalia there to secure the border, ethnic Russians and Ukrainians also moved into the area. But these settlers came in the Imperial Time, long before the JAO was officially established in 1934.

So before the JAO was established, there were Cossacks, Russians, Ukrainians plus some Koreans and Tungusic people - but it was relatively sparsely inhabited. Since the Soviet Union was also afraid of the border being vulnerable, they wanted to settle people there in larger numbers.

At the same time, the big Jewish settlements in the USSR at the time were in Ukraine (before the war, Jews were the largest population group in Odesa, for example) - but there were also pretty frequent pogroms against them and the situation was tense.

So the long-term plan was to have the Jews live in a new Autonomous Oblast (giving them an amount of self-determination, though mostly on paper, thus counteracting Zionism which was a pretty popular ideology among Soviet Jews in the 1920s-30s and simultaneously appeasing tensions with antisemites in other places) and therefore bringing development to the border.

Birobidzhan (the capital) is a relatively young city and was mostly developed under Stalin. In the early years, relatively many Jews came (but again, they were always a minority), but the problem was that Stalin was very antisemitic, so the Jewish political institutions were very often targeted.

As far as I know, the people who were already living in the area were never supposed to leave and in fact, non-Jews also migrated there along with Jews the whole time. Making it Jewish was more of a prestige object, but on the whole, the Soviet Union at the time was quite suspicious of religion, so it's not like it was supposed to be an actually culturally Jewish place in the sense that it was supposed to have Jewish inspired laws or anything.


Norwegian27 t1_jbtveim wrote

Is it true that archaeologists have found evidence of Viking presence in another part of Newfoundland, other than L’anse aux Meadows? What’s the latest?


HoneyAndSausages t1_jbu9rwt wrote

How were trades accomplished during the early medieval age? What was used as a common currency before coins or anything like that ?


Doctor_Impossible_ t1_jbuckxr wrote

They used coinage, or tally sticks, or any kind of common unit of exchange they agreed on. The important thing was having a medium of currency to enable trade; what was fairly uniform was the realisation that the form itself was not that important. It didn't matter if the medium was valuable in and of itself. By the early medieval age coinage was well established.


tatramatra t1_jc1f14s wrote

That's a large complex topic. Barter was always in use, but as a substitute of money as we understand them, couple of different things were used in different location across the globe. Generally speaking these were objects/materials that had it's own high value, were durable, easy to store and transport. Metal in different forms, usually ingots of different shapes. That includes not just precious metals but also iron, cooper and bronze. That eventually led to actual coins. Cloth was used, again, in different forms, including actual costumes and garments. Today cloth is cheap, but in pre-industrial era cloth was very laborious to make and expensive. Animal skins were used, especially luxury ones. More exotic objects could be used, usually in some smaller isolated and more primitive societies: sea shells, coral beans -usually in placed where these were been imported, not where they were abundant.


elmonoenano t1_jbzjryo wrote

I don't normally recommend David Graeber's book, Debt. But this is one topic that it was actually really good on. It talks about the way people traded when money was scarce, which is most of human history in most places.

There's a lot of valid criticism of the book so I would maybe check out the wikipedia entry on it to get the outlines of the debate and to help read it critically b/c Graeber is a great writer and he's can be very convincing if you're only getting his side of the story.


RexRow t1_jbv6wuf wrote

I'm looking for information on how the historical mongols tanned leather. I've seen one vague reference to them using 'fermented milk, butter, and egg yolks', but I'm looking for actual details.


JenorRicafort t1_jc8tyoi wrote

>how the historical mongols tanned leather.

According to Morris Rossabi, a scholar of Mongol history, the tanning process involved several steps:

  • Soaking: The hides were soaked in water to remove any dirt, blood, or other impurities. This could take several days or even weeks.

  • Scraping: After soaking, the hides were stretched out and scraped with a dull knife or scraper to remove the hair and flesh.

  • Soaking in Alkaline Solution: The hides were then soaked in a solution of water and an alkaline substance such as lime or ash. This helped to break down the proteins in the hide and prepare it for tanning.

  • Tanning: The hides were tanned using vegetable tanning, which involved soaking the hides in tannin-rich solutions made from tree bark or other plant materials. The tannins helped to bind the proteins in the hide and make it more durable and water-resistant.

  • Stretching and Drying: After tanning, the hides were stretched and dried in the sun or over a fire. This helped to smooth out any wrinkles or folds in the leather and make it more pliable.

  • Finishing: The finished leather could be dyed, oiled, or otherwise treated according to the needs of the Mongol craftsmen.

Source: Rossabi, Morris. "The Mongols and Global History: A Norton Casebook in History." W.W. Norton & Company, 2011.


Opinions_yes53 t1_jbvw0cv wrote

Start with your local library and ask them, fund of information most of the time.


Crimson_Marksman t1_jbvgjgb wrote

I read this tale where a Japanese dude wrestled with a fully armored sword wielding samurai and beat him off with martial arts. How often did hand to hand combat occur against melee users?


TheBattler t1_jbvkkpz wrote

It actually happened very often, especially if both men were similarly armed and armored. I'm gonna assume you're referring to pre-modern battles since you mention Samurais and swords.

Usually, the majority of an army was infantrymen wielding melee weapons, and in fact the word "melee" refers to the confusing, scary part of pre-modern battles where two infantry contingents finally clash and don't have much room to maneuver.

Medieval European martial arts manuals have sections on hand to hand combat, including grappling an enemy with a sword or spear with and without your own weapons.

Indian martial arts under the broad label of Kalaripayattu include armed and unarmed instruction. Same with Chinese martial arts.

I don't really know much about other parts of the world, but wrestling and grappling seems to be a fairly universal past-time. You even see Mongol and Turkic wrestling traditions, and those dudes were most famous for horseback fighting. Those skills would probably be necessary for lance-wielding cavalry if they get dismounted.


tatramatra t1_jc1dp3f wrote

(Eastern Asiatic) martial arts were generally developed as a substitute to combat with weapons where weapons were restricted. For example when some classes of the society were forbidden to own weapons (slaves, peasants) or geographical restrictions of weapons (ban of weapons in towns). This actually includes not just bare hand fighting but also substituting weapons with some other objects and tools, like farming tools (nunchagu might be the most famous example).

Therefore it's safe to say that it occurred often. But that does not mean that it was a good or proficient way of fighting. More like something out of necessity.


Spineynorman67 t1_jbz40bw wrote

Given that the USA has a long history of mentally unstable, gun wielding murderers, is it possible that LH Oswald was in fact a gun nut who managed to kill JFK alone?


jezreelite t1_jbzapdc wrote

It's actually one of the more plausible theories. Oswald was a disturbed ne'er-do-well who seems to have been hungry for attention any way he could get it. He initially wanted to kill the ultra right wing general Edwin Walker, but failed and later just happened to be living in Dallas when JFK visited.

Narratively, though, this isn't satisfying, which is a big reason, I think, why the conspiracies continue to flourish.


MeatballDom t1_jbzlhxl wrote

It's the only acceptable explanation. Even his wife was sure of it too until she realised she could make money off of conspiracy nuts.


phillipgoodrich t1_jbzzzhq wrote

Agree with all. The guy was a sniper trained by the US military; no surprise that he knew how to use a rifle with a sight.


NewBrightness t1_jbzmy9z wrote

Could Gilles de Rais’s killings have been influenced by the death of joan of arc?


jezreelite t1_jc08it5 wrote

Probably not: a biographical essay of Gilles in The Hundred Years War Part III: Further Considerations mentions that his parents died in a gruesome hunting accident that he may have witnessed and that at 16, he kidnapped and forcibly married his cousin, Catherine de Thouars, with the connivance of his maternal grandfather and guardian, Jean de Craon. Jean and Gilles later attempted to kidnap and then threatened Catherine's mother, Beatrice de Montjean, who had decided to remarry, as they feared that her new marriage would cause the loss of some Thouars lands. Years later (possibly at the behest of Georges de La Trémoille), they successfully kidnapped Charles VII's mother-in-law, Yolanda of Aragon.

Later, in 1427 (two years before the appearance of Jeanne), Gilles already liked to watch the executions of pro-English French nobles who had been taken prisoner.

>Interestingly, the defeated English were usually allowed to escape with their lives; by contrast, if an anglophile Frenchman fell into Gilles’s hands was invariably executed as a traitor. One historian describes Gilles’ treatment of such men: He would have them all hung from tall poles that were driven into the ground … Gilles would then stay to watch them fitfully kick, their necks in the noose, until the last spasms of their agony.


AngryBlitzcrankMain t1_jbzs5bn wrote

Its hard to say if they happened at all, let alone what they might have been potentionally influenced by.


JenorRicafort t1_jc8q023 wrote

If we restore an ancient historical ruins, would it still be authentic?


LateInTheAfternoon t1_jca25ty wrote

I believe most archaeologists would think of the authenticity of a site as lying on a scale and not as a binary property. The most famous example of a heavily restored site is probably the palace of Knossos (by Evans in the 1920s). Check it out if you want to form an opinion for yourself.


phillipgoodrich t1_jcjts3m wrote

Perhaps best-known, but little-known (huh?) is the the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. It was ordered to be built on the site of the "real" temple (of Solomonic legend and recorded by Ezra) in Jerusalem by Herod the Great, following his return from Rome. He had secured the title "King of the Jews" and wanted to show his magnanimity to his new subjects (Herod was not Jewish as is commonly thought, but was an "Edomite" from Iudemea). After his sparkling new temple was finished, it was looked upon by the most strict Jewish sects (such as the Essenes) as a "fake temple." (Kind of like the "Cathedral" of Monte Carlo, which was built by the Grimaldi family and meant to "look like" a medieval European cathedral). While the Essenes had little use for Herod and his "temple," it is indeed the western/"wailing" wall of this temple that is venerated by Judaism today. But it is by no means a part of Solomon's temple.


shantipole t1_jcmk8av wrote

You oversimplified Herod and his relationship with the Jews right into inaccuracy.

The entire point of Herod renovating the Second Temple (built by Ezra, et al after the Baylonian Captivity--Solomon's Temple was destroyed) was to curry favor with the Jews by the raised Jewish and quarter-Jewish by blood but not considered a "real" Jew by hardliners Herod and solidify his power base. He was polishing his jewish bona fides.

He needed to keep the local populace quiet to keep his kingdom. Herod was constantly dealing with the other power cliques in Judea and Rome (look up his mother in law--you think you have it bad?) and was one good rebellion away from Octavius/Augustus deciding that someone else would be a better ruler of a fairly important border state, or at least less of a headache. Dude is not going to go and build a fake Temple on the site of the real Temple--that's what decided the Jews on overthrowing the king in that rather famous Maccabeean incident and would guarantee Rome would find someone better.

And the Essenes...that's like asking the Latter Day Saints their opinion of the Pope. The Essenes were a large sect, but they weren't exactly orthodox in their doctrine (to continue the analogy: it's asking hippy commune Mormons about the Pope). The fact is that the majority of the Jews (including the Maccabeeans, the two mainstream Jewish sects, and that Jesus guy and his followers) thought the Temple was the Temple, regardless of the rebuilding, so long as the proper rituals had been observed to consecrate it, etc.


GSilky t1_jce5zyi wrote

No, it's not ours, therefore anything done to them would not be authentic, it would necessarily not be.


Doctor_Impossible_ t1_jceo4pj wrote

Authentic to whom? It might look authentic to us, to the extent we could validate its authenticity from other finds and knowledge from that era.


33-88-99 t1_jbtj7xu wrote

Did japan think Russia was going to invade? And that's why it surrendered to USA after the bombs ?


en43rs t1_jbtpxbu wrote

A Japan Soviet war wasn't a hypothetical. The USSR did declare war on Japan in August of 45. Ad no, Japan didn't think Russia would invade, because they had a non aggression pact that was supposed to last up until april 1946. That's why the soviet border was basically not defended and the soviet took Manchuria in ten days when they declared war in August.

And yes, the idea that Japan surrendered to the Americans not so much because of the bombs (although, that is a factor to consider) but because they were afraid of what the Soviet may do (especially to the Emperor) is a theory supported by historians.

We can't be sure, since the Japanese burned a lot of records in August, but it's a theory that can and is argued for.


33-88-99 t1_jbtqx69 wrote

Thanks.. that's really interesting. I wonder if theres any evidence from the Russian side that they really were thinking of invading


en43rs t1_jbtrlct wrote

Tons. It wasn't a secret at all. We have communications between the Soviet and the Allies and the Americans especially had asked Stalin for a long time to attack Japan in order to lessen the burden of the Pacific front. The answer was always "yes, when we're done with Germany". And so when they were done with Germany in may, they put a lot of troops in the east and attacked.

It wasn't a secret it was a military plan coordinated with the rest of the Allies.

As for their plans for Japan specifically it's a bit harder to determine, true. But they still got Korea and tried to took the whole peninsula in 1950 (Korean war and all that).


KavyenMoore t1_jbv7mx8 wrote

By the time the nuclear bombs were dropped, it was already clear that Japan had lost the war. In fact, Japan was already willing to conditionally surrender, but as I'm sure you can appreciate, after the horrors of WW2 the allies were interested in nothing less than an unconditional surrender.

Japan was hoping that the Soviets would be able to broker a peace between the two parties that was more favourable to Japan.

The bombing of Nagasaki and the declaration of war by the USSR happened on the same day, and there is considerable debate amongst historians about what ultimately led Japan to finally surrender.

I'm personally in the camp that the Soviet invasion was vastly more impactful than the Atomic bombs, but that's appeared to be somewhat unpopular on reddit in the past.


tatramatra t1_jc1g1xr wrote

Russia did invade. But Japan was hoping to the last moment that USSR will stay neutral and could be used to negotiate some end of war agreement with Western Allies that would not be unconditional surrender. When Russia did declare war and then overrun in the very short time Japanese army in Manchuria and Korea, it was the last straw.

Historians still argue what was the the event that made Japan surrender, atomic bombs or Russian war declaration.


Spineynorman67 t1_jbzemx9 wrote

Japan was infinitely more scared of a communist Soviet invasion than a US invasion. They were fanatically anti-communist. The end of the war in Europe meant Stalin was able to send troops eastwards and their invasion was very immanent. Their declaration of war on the day of the atomic bomb was perfectly timed.


Doctor_Impossible_ t1_jc44xw8 wrote

> and their invasion was very immanent.

The Soviets were completely unprepared to invade Japan. Preliminary battles showed the Japanese could fight the Soviets to a standstill, and Japanese resistance, always stiff, was expected to be extreme. The Soviets had a massive shortage of ships necessary for amphibious invasion, and their previous efforts had been shockingly bad in terms of communication (no ship to shore radio contact, for instance) and cohesion.

>They were fanatically anti-communist.

The Japanese were also rabidly anti-American.


Spineynorman67 t1_jc6toke wrote

On 9th August the USSR invaded Manchuko with 1.6 million men, 5500 tanks & 5300 aircraft, killing tens of thousands of Japanese and capturing over 600,000 within days. The rapid collapse of their huge army there convinced many in Japan's government to declare unconditional surrender.


quantdave t1_jcq89uj wrote

Neither Moscow's declaration of war nor the bombings ended it: even after Nagasaki and the USSR's invasion of Manchuria the obstacle remained the position of the Emperor which had been omitted from the Potsdam ultimatum, contrary to the advice of key Truman advisers. It was the US clarification of Aug 11 that "the authority of the Emperor and the Japanese Government to rule the state shall be subject to the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers" that made surrender possible by implying the throne's survival, even if shorn of its former powers.


hoeseph36 t1_jbtluhu wrote

So with all of this new “information” coming out about older and older past civilizations, how do you think that will shake up the status quo?


MeatballDom t1_jbuxj6x wrote

We regularly find new information through archaeology. Once archaeologists can dig up new evidence it can be examined, and it can be added to our understanding of all the relevant fields.

History isn't like a jigsaw puzzle, there is no final missing piece, it's more like a never ending brick wall. Sometimes there are bricks missing in the middle that need to be replaced, sometimes there's new information found that makes the wall higher, or wider, but it's still very sturdy and isn't going to fall over just because a new brick is found.

There's no "status quo" to shake up, finding new information, adding to understanding, and arguing for new perspectives is what academics do. Anyone who is telling you that there's some grand conspiracy has a reason to be lying to you. Go on down to your local university library and read through some historical journals (or see if you can get free access on Jstor) and read some recent articles on new finds. Academia is constantly telling older historians that they got things wrong, it's part of the process. There's no point in publishing a work to say "good job, chaps, nothing's changed" it's a necessity of the job to continually make new arguments, new positions, and change the field. It's a requirement for getting a PhD to do work that no one has done before. And that's a good thing!


elmonoenano t1_jbzoalt wrote

Like /u/MeatballDom points out, history moves more through Kuhnian shifts than Popperian revolutions. With that said, I think we're getting some exciting evidence that is pushing back the timeline of settlement in the Americas and if the evidence pans out and we find more, it could be a big shift.

Also, with new technologies like Lidar we're finding out more about settlement patterns and urbanization. It sees that we had underestimated the size of population centers throughout the Americas. Combined with the earlier settlement info, we might very well increase estimates of the populations of the Americas at the time of settlement from about 40ish million, which is kind of the standard right now, to one of the higher end estimate ranges.

But it's not a sudden shift. People have been arguing this for decades and slowly building and examining an evidentiary record for these theories.


dolphinskeet t1_jbtu52d wrote

Book recommendation over 19th century western history?


magyar_garda13 t1_jbtz9h7 wrote

Why did Hitler killed Röhm? He didnt trust him or why? Im talking about the Röhm Purge. Thank you for answers in advance!


Thibaudborny t1_jbu4ojz wrote

Röhm presented a rival faction within the party, a pillar for rivals to gather around. To quote some random Kurgan immortal challenging this kilt wearing bloke: "There can be only one". Hitler didn't want to share the light.


Spineynorman67 t1_jbzdloc wrote

Röhm was also irritated that Hitler got the backing of some major bankers and industrialists. He wanted there to be another revolution in which the state would play a more central role in an anti-capitalist sense, to end monopolies and nationalise industry and land. He was the "left wing" of the nazi party. He also was one if the very few people who called Hitler by his first name and was not scared of him. He led the SA, which by 1934 numbered some 3 million men whilst the Reichswehr was limited to 100,000 under the terms of the treaty of Versailles, so was in fact a potential future threat to Hitler.


Gerasans t1_jbu0gc7 wrote

Are there any good storytelling/documentary books about Polynesians like James Schultz wrote about native Americans?


riskybiz85 t1_jbu5qei wrote

What’s the difference between the variations in communism: Marxism vs Leninism vs Bolshevism etc. I’m reading a biography on Stalin right now and ngl this shit is confusing af


CaLiBeR_JR t1_jbunutr wrote

Marxism is the theories of Marx & Engels, generally referring to the economic, historical and sociological theories of both. Leninism is the theories of Lenin regarding the running of a post-capitalist, pre-communist state. Bolshevism more or less refers to the broader ideology of the Bolsheviks which could mean Stalinism or could mean Trotskyism


tatramatra t1_jc1fk2r wrote

Bolshevism does not exist as a theory. Bolsheviks was name of the party, not a theory. Leninism also does not exist per see, what exist is Marxism-Leninism, which is theoretical extension/modification of Marxism made by Lenin and his colleagues born from a necessity to actually implement Marxist theory in practice. Or in other words to reconcile Marxist theory with practice in actual conditions of Russia and Europe as experienced by Lenin and his Bolsheviks.

And yes, it is confusing.


Ciixtrus t1_jbuefz9 wrote

What were some major events that happened marking the transition between the fall of the Roman Empire and the Medieval Age?


Thibaudborny t1_jbvjchw wrote

Canonically, Western Rome 'falling' in 476 (end of Antiquity) and the shift of Latin to Greek as the administrative language of the Eastern Roman Empire by the end of the 7th century, following the Arab conquests & the loss of their eastern provinces (end of Late Antiquity). All in all, these are arbitrary pickings. They don't necessarily correspond to major events in reality. More significant than Odoacar deposing the last Western Roman Emperor is, for example, the establishment of the Carolingian Empire, or prior to this the Renovatio Imperii of Justinian and the ensuing Justinian Plague.


quantdave t1_jcq5nh8 wrote

You'd need to define "medieval". For some of us in its broader European terms it's the 5th-15th centuries or thereabouts (in which case not much happened between the first-named episode and the later period, because one begins the other, although of course it's never as straightforward as that); for some though it's a narrower period, e.g. the 11th-15th centuries (though even the 14th-15th centuries sit uneasily alongside the preceding "high middle ages"), in which case you'd be asking about what used to be labelled the "dark ages" and the Carolingian and subsequent period.

For the period immediately following Rome's fall (which only ended the western empire, the eastern surviving for another millennium) in the west is the ongoing migration of Germanic peoples into former Roman territory and the establishment of regional kingdoms under various forms of social organisation that would in time evolve into "feudal", manorial or seigneurial hierarchical ties of obligation underpinned spiritually by the spread of Latin Christianity. In eastern Europe it's the survival and temporary recovery of the eastern or Byzantine empire and the westward movement of Slavs, Magyars and others. Along the way we get the revival of money in the west (silver far more importantly than gold), trade and towns, though the big growth comes from the 10th century.

For most of the world, the periodisation's of course largely meaningless, and different start and end dates have to be used for any parallel concept. Even in Europe it's a shorthand, but a useful one provided we're aware of its limitations and the lack of unanimity over even what period's being referred to.


Nothereaction t1_jbug54k wrote

Who were the strangest man during the Russian Civil War?


huumer t1_jbuzklk wrote

Im not sure what you mean by strange but the bloody baron is pretty eyecatching. The Lions led by donkeys podcast also has a good series on him.


Nothereaction t1_jbwj8lg wrote

Thanks i knew about this guy already and I meant like insane peoples during the civil war. Like the Ruler of all Russia who was an admiral and an ukrainian anarchist who made a short lived anarchist state in Ukraine.


jezreelite t1_jbxeram wrote

The Ukrainian anarchist was Nestor Makhno and I think the Admiral was Aleksandr Kolchak.

Neither of them were all that weird compared to Roman von Ungern-Sternberg, but that's only because Ungern-Sternberg was such a massive weirdo, he was in a class all by his own. The only figures who get close to him are Grigori Semyonov, Boris Annenkov, Ivan Kalmykov, and Aleksandr Dutov. An American general, William Sidney Graves, wrote of them:

>Semenoff and Kalmikoff soldiers, under the protection of Japanese troops, were roaming the country like wild animals, killing and robbing the people, and these murders could have been stopped any day Japan wished. If questions were asked about these brutal murders, the reply was that the people murdered were Bolsheviks and this explanation, apparently, satisfied the world. Conditions were represented as being horrible in Eastern Siberia, and that life was the cheapest thing there. There were horrible murders committed, but they were not committed by the Bolsheviks as the world believes. I am well on the side of safety when I say that the anti-Bolsheviks killed one hundred people in Eastern Siberia, to every one killed by the Bolsheviks.

Other rather odd people involved in the Russian Civil War could include:

  • Georgi Atarbekov: Armenian Bolshevik and Chekist. Bragged about having personally stabbed Nikolai Ruzsky.
  • Aleksandr Eiduk: Latvian Chekist and poet who wrote verses about the joys of killing.
  • Naftaly Frenkel: Former smuggler turned builder of the Gulag
  • Mikhail Kedrov: Chekist and pianist. Notorious for his cruelty.
  • Lavr Kornilov: Cossack and White general who loved mass murder and the Totenkampf
  • Béla Kun: Hungarian journalist turned Bolshevik. Tried to start a Soviet regime in Hungary, but failed and was forced to flee back to Russia.
  • Vladimir Purishkevich: One of the killers of Rasputin; extreme anti-Semite, proto-fascist, and supporter of Kornilov
  • Sidney Reilly: British spy, probably Ukrainian by birth. Involved with an abortive plot with Savinkov to overthrow the Bolsheviks.
  • Boris Savinkov: Terrorist, drug addict, novelist, and womanizer
  • Maria Spiridonova: Terrorist and assassin who looked like a schoolmarm. Initially an ally of the Bolsheviks, she later turned on them and orchestrated the assassination of the German ambassador, Count Mirbach.
  • Semyon Ter-Petrosian: Better known as Kamo. An early friend and ally of Stalin who was responsible for the 1907 Tiflis bank robbery

JenorRicafort t1_jc8uyuh wrote

  • Grigori Rasputin: As previously mentioned, Rasputin was a controversial figure in Russian politics and society known for his charismatic personality, self-proclaimed holiness, and supposed ability to heal the sick.
  • Alexander Kolchak: Kolchak was a naval officer who became a prominent anti-Bolshevik leader known for his strict discipline and military force, but also for his superstitions and beliefs in magic and the occult.
  • Boris Savinkov: Savinkov was a revolutionary and writer who fought on various sides during the Russian Civil War. He was known for his violent tactics and involvement in several assassinations and terrorist attacks.
  • Maria Bochkareva: Bochkareva was a female soldier who formed an all-women battalion to fight for the Russian Provisional Government during World War I and the Russian Civil War. She was known for her bravery and determination, but also for her eccentricity, including a belief that she was the reincarnation of Joan of Arc.
  • Pyotr Krasnov: Krasnov was a Cossack officer who fought against the Bolsheviks during the Russian Civil War. He was known for his fierce loyalty to the Tsarist regime and his anti-Semitic views.
  • Yakov Yurovsky: Yurovsky was a Bolshevik revolutionary who led the execution of the last Tsar and his family in 1918. He was known for his cold and calculated demeanor and his meticulous planning of the execution.
  • Ivan Susanin: Susanin was a legendary figure in Russian folklore known for leading Polish soldiers into a swamp during the early 17th century. During the Russian Civil War, his name was invoked as a symbol of resistance against foreign invaders.

[deleted] t1_jbuhb11 wrote



Doctor_Impossible_ t1_jbutlbu wrote

In the Middle Ages people bathed regularly, and bath houses were literally one of the most, if not the most, popular places to go.

Hygiene took a notorious nose dive in the following centuries (King Louis XIV was the 17th-18th century, for instance), which were not in the Middle Ages.


Twisted_Pretzel85 t1_jbupx4p wrote

Where is the other surviving chest from the Boston Tea Party (Not the Robinson chest)? What is the story of this other chest, and what does it look like?


rvasshole t1_jbur2bh wrote

Anybody have good book suggestions that cover the various civilizations and empires?


Anthony9824 t1_jbvr1ph wrote

I apologize because this isn’t a book but I saw a video a few months ago that I liked. It’s on YouTube the video is called timeline of world history and the poster is called useful charts. A nice 17 minute summary of major world empires and other important historical topics. Very general but covers major empires across the world, I liked it a lot.


I-wannagohomenow t1_jbwerv6 wrote

Is there a real thing as "Manna" (bible reference). Didnt do a deep dive online but trying to figure out if it is even a real thing nowadays. Can imagine popcorn from heaven - that could fill up a few thousand...


JenorRicafort t1_jc8rvn5 wrote

>Is there a real thing as "Manna" (bible reference). Didnt do a deep dive online but trying to figure out if it is even a real thing nowadays.

There is ongoing debate among scholars and researchers about what the biblical manna actually was and whether it exists as a real thing today. Here is a citation to an article that discusses some of the possible explanations for manna:

Zohary, M. (2012). The Plants of the Bible: Second Edition Revised and Enlarged. Cambridge University Press.

This book provides a comprehensive analysis of the plants mentioned in the Bible, including manna. The author discusses various theories about what manna might have been, including the resin of the tamarisk tree, the sap of the manna ash tree, and the excretion of certain insects. However, the author also notes that none of these explanations are entirely conclusive, and that the true identity of manna remains a mystery


I-wannagohomenow t1_jc9odgn wrote

Thankyou for your intellectual and substantial reply. It was very kind and gives me a little hope that I can obtain information on biblical or Islamic references without an overflow of propaganda or influence.


TieFragrant53 t1_jbwxjuo wrote

Did the battlefront failure of the USSR in the Russo-Finnish Winter War in 1939 give Hitler the confidence to invade the USSR in 1941? It was mentioned in the linked video but I am thinking that even without this Hitler would have invaded the USSR. Thoughts?


TheBattler t1_jbx0bik wrote

Invading the USSR was always going to be a necessity. Hitler needed to secure access to oil in the Caucasus and possibly Iran (who were keen to ally with him).

The Soviets had a Non-Aggression Pact with the Nazis that was supposed to last until 1949, but they broke it in 1941. I think it's more likely that the Winter War simply shifted the invasion timetable earlier.


tatramatra t1_jc1d38m wrote

There is no evidence of Winter War having any direct influence on Hitler's plans. The goal of invasion of the USSR was laid down by Hitler before he even came to power. It was (in his opinion) necessity to carve out "living space" and colonial empire for Germany and Hitler saw that space in the Eastern Europe.

As for timetable, it was set by the developments on the Western front and general situation in Europe and had nothing to do with Finland.


Wolfbrick t1_jbyli9k wrote

I'm looking for the name of the woman depicted on Paul Stahr's "Be Patriotic" World War I propaganda posters. Did war propaganda mascots often go without names?


Polar_Taz t1_jc252bh wrote

Why were the european and pacific theaters of ww2 considered apart of the same war despite being so seperate?


en43rs t1_jc2ifyv wrote

Because they are linked.

Is Japan's war in China related to Germany's wars? Not at all. But Japan's war with the Wester Allies definitely is. Japan only attacked because they thought the Germans were going to win in Russia (it's just a few months after Barbarossa), Germany declared war on the US just after Pearl Harbor.

To be clear, it's not a side front of Germany's wars, it's its own thing. If you see WW2 as only the Third Reich's War then yes it's completely distinct. But it's under the same umbrella because it is also linked to it. The participants are basically the same on the Allied side and Japan and Germany are allies... so it makes no sense to treat it as something wholly distinct. It's basically the same as the Eastern Front of WW2, it's clearly different from the Western Front, but still part of the same global thing.


GOLDIEM_J t1_jc2mx4v wrote

How does the bronze age collapse compare to the crisis of the late middle ages?


Thibaudborny t1_jc2unpc wrote

Consider one saw the widespread collapse of a larger number of settled civilizations for centuries to come, whereas the other - while basking in societal/systemic collapse & a massive deathtoll - saw the reformation of the medieval world socioeconomically and politically over the span of a few generations.


en43rs t1_jc3bu6w wrote

This. The late medieval crisis could maybe be compared to the late antiquity early medieval crises : fall of the Roman Empire in the west, Justinian plague, Arab conquests of the near east and Persia.


drogyn1701 t1_jc2ru4k wrote

I'm thinking of taking a trip to Pennsylvania this summer with the primary goal of seeing some historical sites. So far on my list is Gettysburg, Valley Forge and Braddock's Field. Possibly might also head north to the Watkins Glen area.

What are some other can't miss historical sites in Pennsylvania or nearby?


ArmoredSpearhead t1_jc7f34r wrote

I'd check out Antietam. I went Gettysburg, then Antietam basically back to back.


phillipgoodrich t1_jcju2ux wrote

Strictly speaking, Antietam is Maryland, not Pennsylvania, but in reasonable proximity. You probably know this.


Juliette1928 t1_jc96lyw wrote

Jim Thorpe is very cool. Also Scranton…maybe the coal mine


ducanna12 t1_jc3v8ae wrote

Are there any good informative books about Japanese soldiers that were captured during WW2?


JenorRicafort t1_jc8qs0l wrote

>informative books about Japanese soldiers that were captured during WW2?

  • "Japanese Prisoners of War" by Philip Towle - This book examines the experiences of Japanese soldiers who were captured by the Americans during World War II. The book draws on primary sources and interviews with former prisoners to provide a comprehensive account of the conditions in American POW camps, as well as the treatment of Japanese prisoners after the war. (Towle, P. (1998). Japanese Prisoners of War. The University Press of Kentucky.)
  • "The Great Captains: The Art of War in the Campaigns of Alexander, Hannibal, Caesar, Gustavus Adolphus, Frederick the Great, and Napoleon" by Theodore Ayrault Dodge - While not solely focused on Japanese prisoners, this book does provide an account of the experiences of Japanese soldiers captured by the Americans during World War II. The book includes a chapter on the Pacific War, which describes the capture of Japanese soldiers and their treatment in American captivity. (Dodge, T. A. (2012). The Great Captains: The Art of War in the Campaigns of Alexander, Hannibal, Caesar, Gustavus Adolphus, Frederick the Great, and Napoleon. Simon and Schuster.)
  • "The Pacific War: From Pearl Harbor to Okinawa" by William B. Hopkins - This book provides a detailed account of the Pacific War, including the capture of Japanese soldiers by the Americans. The book draws on primary sources and archival material to provide a comprehensive overview of the war in the Pacific, from the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor to the final battles in Okinawa. (Hopkins, W. B. (2019). The Pacific War: From Pearl Harbor to Okinawa. Casemate Publishers.)

Sventex t1_jc5zce5 wrote

What does it mean for the age old Phalanx vs Legion debate when the armies of Italy eventually adopted the pike? Whenever I bring up this topic during a Phalanx vs Legion debate, I rarely get a response, probably because I'm not debating historians.

"Following its 1506 military reforms, Florence had an army armed 70% with pikes, 10% with muskets, and the remaining 20% with halberds. In Venice the proportions were first fixed in 1548, at 10% halberds, 30% arquebuses, and 60% pikes."


TheGreatOneSea t1_jc9lz73 wrote

Pike and Shot isn't really comparable to the Phalanx: if a Roman Legion had guns and cannons, the merit of sword and shield against pike would probably be the least of a Phalanx's problems, as it's forced to either attack an entrenched enemy, or retreat.

Even in Pike and Shot warfare though, sword and shield were still being used to great effect by the Rodeleros, who were used in conjunction with pikes and guns, but were also eventually dropped for the same reason that halbreds and pikes mostly were as well: by the start of the 17th century, increases in gunpowder quality and quantity had decisively made powder the weapon of choice. As such, fending off pike squares in melee didn't require special consideration, given the losses that the pikes would take trying to advance in a formation without fire superiority backing them.

Practically all Musketeers had swords as backup weapons though, and the Highland Charge famously made good use of them, so even sword infantry didn't totally die out until bayonets became common.


Sventex t1_jcbaxpb wrote

Weren't Greek Phalanx pikeman also armed with swords? A xiphos or kopis sword as backup? And was the army being made up of 10% muskets enough to make Pike formations dominant again? Why wouldn't archers of the ancient world not be able to perform the same function as a pike and shot formation?


pigpotjr t1_jcnhk12 wrote

What is the difference between the academic study of History and Geography?


quantdave t1_jcq07cc wrote

They're both closely related, or should be (at least so far as human geography's concerned, but physical geography and the distribution of resources are just as relevant to history). But geography (other than historical geography) concerns place while history concerns time or evolution through time, which of course occurs in geography but usually in a longer timeframe.

As far as history and human geography are concerned, I'm very much for linking them as closely as possible: neither's complete without the other. We don't waft about independent of place an more than people and their creations (societies, cultures, institutions) just happen to be where they are: the interactions are fundamental and fascinating in their own right, whichever the discipline.


pigpotjr t1_jcrn6s4 wrote

Thank you! Just to make sure I understand it correctly. An academic historian would study the American Revolution in Boston, but an academic geographer would study how the location of Boston contributed to its role in the American Revolution? If this is the case, how is this different from Environmental History?

Also, do you have any recommendations for academic geography literature so as to get a better idea of the field's research? Thanks again; I am just confused about how both fields differ since they seem so similar.


quantdave t1_jcrz7fz wrote

Yes, I think that's a helpful way to to think about it: either scholar might in theory undertake either study, one taking history as the starting-point, the other geography: the geographer might take a longer-run approach, studying how location, urban form, economic specialisation, regional linkages and social structure shaped Boston's political character, but that too could use the 1770s as its focus.

Environmental history's another growing field intimately related to both traditional disciplines and particularly with population/economic history and historical geography, and now enriched by increasing application of techniques like pollen ice-core & tree-ring analysis which may yet supplant earlier approaches in some contexts. I'd say that where history starts from human populations in or over time and historical geography from the physical context, environmental history's more explicitly about the interaction between the two: the same might be said of historical geography too, but there the focus tends to be more specifically on the impact on the human populations concerned.

My historical geography texts tend to be rather old and my economic geography ones older still and more narrowly-focused, contemporary rather than specifically historical treatments clustering mostly the first half of the 20th century (when we get the first modern studies), so I hesitate to recommend any. NJG Pounds' Historical geography of Europe and its successors are perhaps the best-known, but there's also a later Oxford multi-author work of the same title bringing together both geographers and historians that I must get my hands on. I don't know of anything similar for the US, for which I tend to use economic & demographic studies and the census record: perhaps the phenomenon of the shifting frontier has worked against more general treatments integrating both disciplines.


pigpotjr t1_jd4klvr wrote

Thank you so much for your detailed response! If it is alright, I do have one last question.

It's wildly known that the Job market for both Academic and non-academic historians (amongst many other humanities) is unfortunately abysmal. Can the same be said for academic Geography? In other words, which field, the history of Geography, has the better academic job outlook?

Thanks again; I really appreciate it!


quantdave t1_jd5kvut wrote

I'm sadly the last person to ask about careers! My guess though is that if you're undecided geography might offer better prospects as being more visibly relevant to international relations and business (history is of course also valuable for both, but I'm not sure it's widely perceived as such) - and of course an environmental component would be useful in our times. An environmental, economic & human geography mix incorporating change through time might be a way to go while you weigh up specialisation options.

You might be better off taking that query up with a geography subreddit or board (or some academics if you can get your hands on them), unless there are any hereabouts with experience of both fields. The whole world of work is a formidable challenge, and who knows where it's headed? In your favour at least the baby-boom intake is retiring from the scene and AI isn't yet smart enough to replace them. Good luck in whatever you choose.


ThePinkKraken t1_jcnul1e wrote

I'm hoping someone can help me here. One quite niche topic and one very broad. Looking for good sources on both of them :)

  1. English history
    I've just recently learned that both vikings and Rome went all the way up to the UK. I'm very curious about this time period. Why did they go up there, how was Britain ruled back then, etc? I'm planning on moving to the UK and want to know more about the place, so recommendations about all time periods are welcome.
    Exception: WW1 - present time.

  2. History of crochet
    Now, the more niche question. I love crochet myself and I adore the old patterns, so I'd love to learn more about this craft. There are a lot of variations (irish crochet, Bavarian crochet, jewelry, lace crochet, filet crochet, etc) and I just want to know more. Who came up with the notation? How did it develop over the years, stuff like this. It's my "maybe someone has any pointers if I'm lucky" question :)


quantdave t1_jcptyuy wrote

England was long attractive to conquerors or raiders for a variety of reasons, from its resources (notably its productive agricultural land and minerals, attractive to Romans, Anglo-Saxons, vikings and Normans) to its strategic importance as a large offshore island with extensive Continental interactions and close to its southern neighbour (and potentially too close for comfort, a particular concern for Caesar after his conquest of Gaul, with which southern Britain had substantial affinities - though it was left to Claudius to expand the Empire beyond the Channel): Norse raiders were conversely drawn to its proximity and extensive irregular island coastline, a vulnerability in the face of seaborne attackers ( and btw for them it was across or sometimes down rather than up, so climatically less unappealing than for Roman soldiers with the misfortune to be posted there.)

The country's economic condition in this millennium is somewhat puzzling: that it exported grain under Roman rule and provided viking raiders with enormous treasure suggests that it had productive capacity to spare even with the limited technology of the time, yet was at least by the later period already a place of notable wealth. That it seems simultaneously to have been under-exploitated yet capable of yielding a surplus may offer a clue to its subsequent ascent as well as its attractiveness to invaders.

The country passed through various forms of administration - from a patchwork of local kingdoms or chiefdoms and then a Roman province under successive governors and occupied by 40-50,000 Roman troops and again a patchwork of post-Roman and Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, to a unified realm from the 9th-10th centuries (for a time in the 11th under Danish rule) to a Norman kingdom notable for its centralisation under the crown, another source of its later power even as royal fiat gave way to parliamentary government, most notably from the 17th century when a king ignored his legislature and rather lost his head. Regional identities (and accents!) persist, but with none of the political continuity that characterises Continental provinces and regions.

The big facts though in modern England are industry and Empire, both mostly or wholly gone but casting a vast shadow. Early factory mechanisation made Britain (as the state now was) the world's economic frontrunner from the 1780s until the emergence of more dynamic rivals from the mid-19th century, and while its economy is today (like most of the developed world) essentially a post-industrial one reliant mainly on services, the abruptness of the earlier break transformed society and disrupted its traditions more thoroughly than probably anywhere else. A "deep" England survives in some more rural parts but for most persists only in period TV drama. This is a modern nation, for all its nominal adherence to (largely likewise re-imagined) pageantry invoking earlier times.

The other thing that hasn't gone away is the phantom of colonial empire in which Britain used its industrial might and wealth to impose its rule over at one time a quarter of the world. The loss of bygone power and prestige still provokes bewilderment and sometimes resentment among a (mostly but not exclusively older) segment of the population and hangs over political life: it's not omnipresent, but you'll encounter it. Race is reassuringly less of an issue than in some societies, England's insularity and innate conservatism being tempered by its modern reality and centuries of global exchange. But Acheson's observation that "Britain has lost an empire and has not yet found a role" remains relevant.

For a good place to begin the story I still recommend PH Sawyer, From Roman Britain to Norman England, after which it's probably best to trace developments thematically (society, economy, political evolution) unless you want to tackle the multi-volume Oxford History of England (two series, the old now being replaced apart from its first volumes of which the updated two-part vol 1 and Stenton's revised vol 2 remain important for the first millennium).

Crochet's an interesting one, to my surprise only emerging as a discrete form in the early 19th century but with antecedents in 18th-century Scottish knitting and French embroidery. So that's something I learned today!


ThePinkKraken t1_jcq2jd0 wrote

So many long replies, I'm loving you all! It's also interesting to see that even in this small comment chain people are already having different opinions on how valuable England was. I'll dig into your comment a bit later, it's a long one and my brain functions with 5% capacity right now.

Shame that nobody has any sources on crochet, but I'm aware it's a very niche topic.


en43rs t1_jco8ayx wrote

So. Here is a very simplified timeline of Britain:
-Before 43 AD Britain is made up of a lot of Celtic tribes, not that dissimilar from Gaul.

-In 43 AD the Romans invade and conquer what is today more or less England and Wales. This is an unruly province (it's isolated and far away, that plays a role) so they put a lot of soldier on it and build Hadrian's wall (under emperor Hadrian) to keep the picts (in what is today Scotland) out.

-Roman culture is present in cities but is still very much limited.

-In 410 Rome is falling apart and Rome leaves. The island is now made up of small Celtic kingdoms/tribes more or less Romanized. From this time up to the 800 or so there isn't a lot of written sources, so it's very very difficult to be sure of the details.

-From the 500s onward Germans start to migrate to the Island and takes over the eastern part. Those Germans are Angles and Saxons (from which we get England and Anglo-Saxon). They rule over and integrate the local Celts and basically rule over what isn't mountains (so not Wales and not Scotland..... so England). That's where the Wales (Celtic) and England divides comes from. England is not united but made up of several kingdoms, around the 700 there are seven small Anglo-Saxons kingdoms.

-Around 800 Scandinavian raiders (what we call Vikings, which isn't a culture, it's a job basically, it means to leave for an expedition) start attacking Western Europe, Britain included. Around 860 Scandinavians start to migrate in large number in order to settle in Britain. That's not the first time this happened (the Angles and Saxons did it, and it's not the only place the Scandinavians settle, they do it in France, in Russia, so on).

-From the 870s to the 1030s Norse/Scandinavians from Denmark control Eastern England. In 1042 finding it too difficult to maintain the Danes leave. An Anglo-Saxon king now controls all of England for the first time.

-In 1066 Normans (from the French region of Normandy, descendants of Scandinavians and local French people) led by William the Conqueror invade England (at the same time the Norwegian also try to take it over, in what is the last Norse invasion of England, it fails). They conquer it and that's where the modern England we know come from : an Anglo-Saxon people (with Norse influence and a dash of Celts) ruled by a French nobility which as centuries progress becomes more and more English (but it explains why the English language doesn't looks like Germans but uses a lot of French words).

England only becomes the UK in 1707 when England and Scotland (ruled by the same kings since 1603) merge into a single country.


ThePinkKraken t1_jcobhwa wrote

Wow thank you so much for the summary! I have so many more questions now tho - any pointers where I can learn more about it?

You've made me even more curious now, especially about... everything to be fair. How much influence of those earlier cultures can still be found? Why got it evaded by so many different countries if it's so hard to maintain any influence there?

Am I understanding you right, 800 Scandinavias (thanks for the correction about Vikins!) people were enough to attack and settle down?


calijnaar t1_jcohjwe wrote

If you want a really detailed account, I'd recommend the British History Podcast (be warned, though, Jamie is now at episode 414, and has just reached the Norman conquest in 1066, so there's a lot of detail and probably still a few decades to go until he reaches the 20th century)


ThePinkKraken t1_jcq2u7y wrote

Uhhhh. I love myself some podcasts to listen to while doing chores or doing mindless stuff in games. As long as this guy isn't making up things that should be right up my alley!


calijnaar t1_jcqzjbn wrote

He's not a historian, but it is very well researched. (There's a subreddit for the pod, by the way: r/BritishHistoryPod )


en43rs t1_jcodit2 wrote

For more info you will need to track down books, podcasts or videos. I'm sorry but I don't have anything specific to recommend on England.

Why did a lot of people invade England? Actually England is nothing special. Before the year 1000 the history of Europe is the history of massive invasions. For example France: Celts took over the local people (we don't know anything about them) in 700 BC (and the local people probably took over other people before), the Romans came around 50 BC, then a small number of Germans (called the Franks) took it over around 500... Europe before the year 1000 had a lot of migrations and Invasions. It was just part of the local scene. Why it stopped is complicated but a theory is that when countries became stronger it became a lot more difficult to take over a place and so vast migrations stopped. Also those migrations/invasions were often due to a lack of resources which can be prevented by stronger trade network: if you can buy food elsewhere you don't need to leave your country. And this wasn't true just for Europe: in America, Africa, Asia, you see vast migrations throughout the ages.

For what remains of theses culture... depends where you are. In Wales Celtic culture (in the form of the Welsh language, spoken by 18% of the population of Wales) is still very present. In other places? Not really. Outside of places names it's very difficult to see. This video is interesting on that subject (also it's funny). Those cultures haven't been relevant in a thousand years, so outside of the occasional town name, there isn't really anything.

>Am I understanding you right, 800 Scandinavias (thanks for the correction about Vikins!) people were enough to attack and settle down?

My bad! I meant that in the year 800 several thousands of Scandinavians took over eastern England. They still weren't a lot of them, they exploited rivalries between Anglo-Saxons to succeed.


quantdave t1_jcpye4x wrote

In fact I'd say England was special: why it should have been so remains shrouded in mystery, but that it could engorge Scandinavia with more money than raiders knew what to do with and then lured Norman rulers even at the expense of their powerful Continental duchy suggests there was something of note going on there.

This isn't to invoke any spurious English exceptionalism: any country's only as special as its resources and characteristics make it in the wider conditions of a particular time - but you can see even in this early formative period indications that there's a capacity that seems not to have gone unnoticed even among contemporaries.

Research in the past half-century on the origins of later British growth has tended to push the start back well beyond the onset of the classic period of industrial prosperity and imperial expansion: I think we can see the beginnings at a very early stage, even as the country struggled to keep up with the sophistication or military prowess of Continental neighbours.


ThePinkKraken t1_jcq1vy3 wrote

>My bad! I meant that in the year 800 several thousands of Scandinavians took over eastern England. They still weren't a lot of them, they exploited rivalries between Anglo-Saxons to succeed.

...This makes so much more sense, I was really impressed by those 800 raiders. :D (In my defence I'm currently a bit ill. )

I appreciate you taking your time for giving me more insight on England and it's history. Thanks a lot, I have a lot to learn it seems!


Hour-Weather-5354 t1_jbtq1gz wrote

How does geography affect a nation?


Thibaudborny t1_jbtq9w0 wrote

In broad lines, it will define socioeconomic conditions, which in turn will influence the sociopolitical superstructure. Think, for example, how you won't have a land of plenty up on the slopes of the Alps with early agriculture.

More niche perhaps, take medieval Flanders, the prevalence of flooding in the coastal areas prompted the formation of large-scale land holdings, directed towards commercial exploitation, creating a proto-capitalist dynamic & in part underpinning the wealth of this region. Once you move a little inland, you see a drastic change in the structure of landownership, with widespread subsistence farming being the norm, and the land being divided in a multitude of smaller holdings.


LaoBa t1_jchm2tz wrote

The same pattern can be found in the Netherlands. Large farms and rich farmers in former swamp areas, small farms and poor farmers on sandy inland soil.


KavyenMoore t1_jbv6gyi wrote

Mountain ranges/coast lines provide natural boundaries that are better at defending invasion.

Which way a river flows can also have an impact. The Alps to the north west and the Danube flowing east had a pretty big impact on Austria's ultimate sphere of influence, for example.


phillipgoodrich t1_jcjvr6v wrote

Some things never change historically/culturally. A "city" or a "nation" can exist where an administration has the ability to provide services in exchange for fealty. The chief service first sought by a population tends to be common defense, which allows everyone to live their quotidien lives in peace. And the more ready the natural defense, the more likely a nation can be created and preserved.

The best and most obvious example of this throughout history is of course islands. The vast majority of islands today are the homes of a single nation (yes, there are notable exceptions, such as Haiti/Dominican Republic ("Hispaniola") and Cyprus). Islands have an often formidable natural boundary which makes defense a reasonably easy task. Being situated between large rivers, or mountain ranges is another example.

Beyond the role of defense, internal services such as health, education, housing, commerce, etc., tend to be facilitated when a nation shares a common climate, via longitude, elevation, proximity, etc., so here again geography can play a major role. A nation like Chile is a great example of the difficulties faced in adminstration of a nation situated in a relatively finite space with spectacular variants in geography. Thus the geographic features within a nation are counter-productive to nation building, and problems with administration ensue. A classic recent example is the Soviet Union, for which administration ultimately produced bankruptcy. Likewise, we can witness within several hundred years the difficulties of administration of larger nations within Europe during the past 1500 years, such as France and Germany, whose mutual border remains somewhat murky, while internal geographic features tend to make provision of services far more expensive than in a smaller nation such as Luxembourg or Belgium.


cargo_run_rust t1_jbstnj5 wrote

Great Pyramid of Giza - How on earth did they build that massive structure? (too many stories but none backed evidence)


bangdazap t1_jbt4reb wrote

The year in Ancient Egypt was divided into two parts: harvest season and flood season, when the banks of the river Nile overflowed. That meant that for half of the year, the Egyptian state had access to large numbers of idle laborers.

Add to that that they had long experience in building monuments (the Great Pyramid was hardly the first colossal monument built by Egypt).

They also had a stable system of government, which meant that they could build their monuments over a long period of time.

Also, the pyramids were built next to a quarry, and a short way from the Nile meaning that they could easily ship in stones.

We also have writings of the engineering teams who built the pyramids, along with other archeological evidence from the construction.


cargo_run_rust t1_jbt4z8m wrote

But 20 years is still a very short period to have built the great pyramid. The math tells that 1 stone should have been put in place for every 1 hour.


mouse_8b t1_jbtbjqe wrote

Or 2 stones an hour in a 12 hour shift. Or 4 stones an hour in a 12 hour shift 6 months at a time. Placing a stone every 15 minutes doesn't seem so impossible, especially if there is a queue of stones ready to go.


cargo_run_rust t1_jbtd1p5 wrote

It is possible, but the same pace over 20 years is unbelievable? Inspite of Rains, battles, summers, droughts... Too difficult to believe.


flibble24 t1_jbte8b7 wrote

Same pace? Maybe busier some days than others.

Or are you suggesting aliens


Entropy- t1_jbtg5h0 wrote

It’s not outrageous, considering the wealth of Egypt and half year time span to get everything ready and planned each year.


Thibaudborny t1_jbt722b wrote

With a massive workforce of (off-)seasonal labourers, performing tasks for the state in an effort that saw a massive amount of the state's resources thrown into the fray. Calculations cited by Toby Wilkinson in "The Rise and Fall of Ancient Egypt", show that the effort of Cheops' (Khufu) pyramid could have been done by two crews of about 4000 men could have completed the job (to quarry, to haul & set in place 2.000.000+ blocks) + an equal number of men to construct and maintain the logistics of construction (ramps, scaffolding, etc) & other small army of workers for specific tasks (carpentry, pottery, cooking, etc) - all in all suggesting an estimated workforce of around 10.000 people. Most of these would only have been there according to the seasons (farmers off duty), with a small dedicated core tending to the site all-year round.

The shape of the pyramid is simple in conception, but the whole planning of the work (like the specific alignment of the building ) is nothing but impressive.


cargo_run_rust t1_jbtdtld wrote

Yep. I'm a fan of toby wilkinson. But the numbers there are ridiculous


Thibaudborny t1_jbtekxk wrote

Why? He is one of the foremost academics on the period, what makes them ludicrous?


TheBattler t1_jbudbh0 wrote

I'm just here to point out that you keep on waving off every explanation as "ridiculous" but you readily accepted a story involving tamed elephants in Egypt in 2500 BC, which is not backed by evidence.


Dtr4goat t1_jbtf25r wrote

I saw YouTube video that suggested they were able to transport the stones utilizing water pressure from the Nile River. Has anyone heard/read/ seen anything in regards to that theory? Does it have any merit?


Entropy- t1_jbthuvj wrote

Yeah, the river used to run right in front of the sphinx monument, large boats were able to transport supplies or stones up and down the river. They had massive boats for the time period.

You can see where the lowest part of the terrain is to the left of the pathway walking up to the sphinx, that was the line of the river. You’ll definitely notice a difference


plsyoubish t1_jc1nwi1 wrote

Just wondering how far back domestic violence goes? When did that idea even form and then become the norm in the first place?


en43rs t1_jc3cfjz wrote

Just like there is no real beginning to the idea of kings (one man has authority is not a complex idea) being a dick to people around you isn’t an “idea”, it’s just an expression of having relationships. If relationships exist, some are bad. It may even predate us being Homo Sapiens.


Mrgrumbleygoo t1_jbu2gfx wrote

Administrators want the money or power or both


Thibaudborny t1_jbu4zg0 wrote

Who knows, that varies from person to person, not really something you can make blanket statements on.