The Obelisks of Ancient Egypt

One of the oldest and most iconic structures of ancient Egypt is the obelisk. A rising tower of stone, it was designed to astound mortals with its height and impress the immortals More »

The baby who provoked a revolution

The birth of a male heir to James II of England made possible a permanent Catholic dynasty. Several Protestants echoed Mary and Anne’s doubts that the baby had been smuggled into the More »

Red Indians and how to tame them

The Elizabethans’ colonial voyages brought them into contact with a people very different level of civilisation from their own—the ‘Indians’ of the New World, as is illustrated by the account written in More »

Mormons in search of Promised Land, 1846-69

The Mormons have been described as the most systematic, organised, disciplined and successful pioneers in American history. For over 20 years they were one of the main forces driving the settlement of More »

‘Alien’ citizens in the Medieval England

Thousands of foreigners poured into England in the Middle Ages. Similar like today, they have been attracted to England by job opportunities or possibility to study. Finding these everyday immigrants is no easy task. More »

 

The British secret service from 1918 to 2009

The British secret service from 1918 to 2009

The end of the First World war saw a great reduction in the size, scope and remit of the intelligence service. In 1919 the Secret Service Committee was created to look at the organisation and direction of British intelligence.

What was the punishment of “burnt in the hand”?

What was the punishment of  “burnt in the hand”?

This punishment was laid down in Tudor times for those who successfully pleaded Benefit of Clergy, whereby members of the church found guilty of various felonies were spared the death sentence. in court, anyone could claim to be a member of the clergy; the test was reading out the passage from the Bible.

Dietrick of Bern

Dietrick of Bern

Dietrick of Bern was a heroic but contradictory fictional figure in medieval south Germanic poetry. A 13th century Icelandic author collected the stories into a coherent sequence and incorporated other heroic legends. Medieval chroniclers held that Dietrick was a poetic representation of Theodoric the Great, the 5th century Ostrogothic ruler of Italy.

The Julio – Claudian Emperors

The Julio – Claudian Emperors

The Julio-Claudian dynasty normally refers to the first five Roman Emperors: Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula (also known as Gaius), Claudius, and Nero, or the family to which they belonged; they ruled the Roman Empire from its formation, in the second half of the 1st century (44/31/27) BC, until AD 68, when the last of the line, Nero, committed suicide.

Holland’s Golden Age

Holland’s Golden Age

The expansion of trade and the importance of commerce in 17th century Europe is best reflected in the wealth and power of the United Netherlands. The Dutch people, numbering barely 1.5 million, thrived behind the earthen walls that protected their small country from the North sea. The Netherlands had been a manufacturing center since the Middle Ages, and in the middle of the 16th century, Antwerp served as the commercial hub of northern Europe.