7
votes
2answers
724 views

What are the “ancient liberties” of the City of London?

I recently learned that three clauses of the Magna Carta are still part of UK law — the liberties of the English Church, the privileges of the City of London, and the right to trial by jury. I think ...
8
votes
1answer
146 views

What did the nobles do after the French Revolution?

After the French Revolution, the privileges of the aristocracy were abolished. Some nobles were executed, others migrated, but what happened to those who stayed in France? Did they live off what ...
13
votes
4answers
1k views

How did the Nazis plan to “defeat” America during World War II?

Yamamoto famously advised against a war with the United States, because he could tell how powerful they would be once they got going. The Nazis, however, declared war on the United States of their ...
15
votes
7answers
9k views

Are modern Greeks related to the ancient Greeks?

Greece has been subject to many many invasions since the 7th century and there must have been a serious mixing of peoples. In a similar situation, we do not usually consider the French or the Germans ...
9
votes
1answer
138 views

When did the First Barbary War start?

I am reading about the First Barbary War from both Swedish and American perspective. I have what I believe to be a very reliable source in Swedish, and it says that the Pascha of Tripoli declared war ...
9
votes
2answers
337 views

What factors discouraged the Nazis from focusing all their forces on the Caucasus region during Operation Barbarossa?

Instead of splitting his invasion force into three groups, it appears to be more sensible to focus on taking over the Caucasus region first. At the time, Baku, a Caucasus oil metropolis accounted for ...
19
votes
1answer
249 views

What is the meaning of people “looking elsewhere” on medieval paintings?

Looking at some medieval paintings I noticed that there are sometimes people "looking elsewhere" even though they take part in an important event and would be expected to pay attention: Is ...
13
votes
4answers
6k views

Does the forearm grip/handshake have a historical basis?

I was wondering where the forearm handshake came from. I found absolutely nothing in wikipedia, so I have no idea if this is really historically based or just a recent popular greeting. I was led to ...
20
votes
1answer
457 views

What was the scale of eroticism in Byzantine theater?

When reading the texts of saint John the Chrysostome i found a very severe criticism of theater because of 'nude harlots' that could be seen there. I have also read some fragments of Procopius' Secret ...
5
votes
1answer
134 views

Why did J. Edgar Hoover publicly deny the existence of the Mafia for so long?

According to Wikipedia, Hoover denied or ignored the existence of the Mafia as a criminal organization until the Apalachin Meeting in late 1957, when it became impossible to ignore. What good did ...
7
votes
2answers
476 views

Can you identify the plane in the picture?

Can you help identify this U.S. Air force four engine prop, numbered 2753.
1
vote
0answers
37 views

What was the true state of relations between Baathist Iraq and Taliban Afghanistan?

Not sure if this is too recent to be a history question, but... All this stuff about Saddam collaborating on the World Trade Centre attack has been shown to be humbug over and over again. The two ...
2
votes
1answer
116 views

Why weren't Germans acceptable as Roman Emperors?

Romans of various ethnicities ultimately rose to be Emperor, such as the Illyrians during the Crisis of the Third Century, of which a notable example is Aurelian. But as far as I know, no Germans did ...
4
votes
1answer
353 views

What are the cultural roots of the Lamp of the Genie?

I'm wondering what the "symbolic etymology", so to speak, is for the Lamp in the story of Aladdin and its relation to the Genie. Why would a genie be bound to an object and be made a servant to its ...
9
votes
3answers
600 views

To what extent did Gandhi affect the factors that led to the partition of India?

From the collected works of Mahatma Gandhi, we can learn that he was not as vehemently opposed to the Partition of India as one would expect. (See here) Probably no one is more distressed than I ...
4
votes
1answer
50 views

What are the historical inaccuracies in Repin's “Reply of the Zaporozhian Cossacks”?

Russian Wikipedia says this about "Запорожцы пишут письмо турецкому султану" ("Reply of the Zaporozhian Cossacks to Sultan Mehmed IV of the Ottoman Empire") painting by Ilya Repin: После первого ...
3
votes
2answers
513 views

Did the 'founding fathers' of the United States see Oliver Cromwell as a role model?

Did they like Oliver Cromwell, who founded a republic after a dispute about taxes led to the overthrow of a king, or did they see him as a usurping Caesar who destroyed a republic and became a tyrant? ...
2
votes
2answers
123 views

Racism Amongst People of Germanic Ancestry in NAZI Germany

Hitler wanted to promote the "master Aryan race" of blonde haired blue eyed people, but even in Germany, many Germans could not have passed this standard: large numbers looked Eastern Europe and ...
2
votes
0answers
55 views

Who really controls the area behind the Sahara wall [closed]

I would like to know who really controls this blank area which is possessed by Morocco and behind the sahara wall, it's controlled by the moroccan army or by the polisario ? or it's blank area ...
3
votes
1answer
107 views

Sieges: Average Attacker to Defender Ratio in Middle Ages

I have read that attackers should outnumber defenders, 20 to 1 or better 50-100 to 1 in sieges in a book about conquest of İstanbul, though I can not find its reference right now. I remember that this ...
13
votes
4answers
593 views

What historical conditions (culture, technology, events, etc.) contributed to China's current lead in population?

If their growth rate was comparable to the rest of the world over the past several millenia, then was it only a matter of having a "head start"? (If so, then how did this initial condition come to ...
13
votes
1answer
1k views

What was the relatively most populous city in history?

Which city did, at a given time, have the largest percentage of humanity living in it? I think that it's probably Imperial Rome, which is said to have reached a million inhabitants, at a time when ...
13
votes
2answers
277 views

How long would the average sword last in the middle ages?

Assuming normal wear and tear, how long before a knight had to replace his sword?
0
votes
1answer
72 views

Why is the bishopric of canterbury located in london?

As far as I understand the seat used to be in Canterbury and then was transferred to London but kept the title. Is that true and when did this happen?
3
votes
1answer
122 views

When did abolition of property qualifications for voting begin in the USA?

I understand that voting qualifications in the USA are a state matter and this didn't all happen in one blow. But which states were the first and last to abolish property qualifications for voting? ...
-3
votes
2answers
81 views

What is the benefit of historical studies for the process of creating tactics and strategies in foreign policy? [closed]

What products of historical working are considered valuable and/or critical to be considered as part of the process of creating political strategies that deals on an international level? In other ...
5
votes
2answers
129 views

What was the official attitude to Cromwell after the Glorious Revolution?

Under the restored Stuarts, obviously, Cromwell was vilified. Actually, his exhumed head was publicly displayed on a pike for more than 20 years during their rule (wikipedia devotes a separate article ...
7
votes
1answer
236 views

What are the earliest examples in history where one state/people stepped in to rescue another?

I started wondering about this after watching yet another World War II movie where the European people are freed by Mother Russia and Uncle Sam and also helped in their recovery. What are the ...
6
votes
0answers
85 views

Are Russian birch bark manuscripts fake?

There are more than a 1000 birch bark manuscripts found in Novgorod and other Russian cities in last 50 years. Many of them stayed in the soil for more than 700 years. In the same time, no special ...
3
votes
4answers
337 views

Why did the Allies let Hitler break the Treaty of Versailles?

I was reading about what led up to ww2 and I noticed that Hitler broke several of the agreements in the Treaty of Versailles such as getting a army of more than 100000 men. I was wondering why the ...
11
votes
2answers
731 views

When did navies stop giving out a drink ration to their sailors?

I seem to remember that the British Navy, and the US Navy maybe, used to give out a ration of alcohol to sailors each day. When did this practice stop, and why?
24
votes
2answers
3k views

Why did the French sell Louisiana?

Why did an imperialistic country like France (at that time) sell a territory so large for so cheap? Was it an important region at the time? I heard that the port of New Orleans was particularly ...
3
votes
1answer
170 views

Why did textile mill owners during the industrial revolution keep their factory windows closed?

This is an excerpt from Harbinger, published in 1846 on the working conditions of mills in Lowell, MA and Manchester, NH: The atmosphere of such a room cannot of course be pure; on the contrary it ...
9
votes
2answers
363 views

Where did Southern Fried Chicken come from?

Wikipedia claims origins both in Scottish and West African cuisine. The problem I have with that is that the story I tend to see about the Scots-Irish who immigrated to North America is that they ...
3
votes
0answers
55 views

Has the U.S. Navy ever commissioned the building of a warship overseas?

Many foreign navies have commissioned foreign shipyards to build warships and submarines for them. Most recently, Russia purchased to amphibious dock landing ships from France (that sale is currently ...
7
votes
0answers
36 views

Why did Thomas Hendricks win the majority of Horace Greeley's electoral votes in 1872?

In researching my answer to Can electors "flip the ticket?", I re-examined the results of the election of 1872. As stated in that answer, 1872 was an interesting election, not for the result (Grant ...
6
votes
2answers
85 views

What was the attitude of Brazil's government towards the Spanish Civil War?

I suppose you could argue it's not uber-important what they thought about a war on another continent in which they had no direct stake, but all the other countries in Latin America couldn't afford to ...
0
votes
0answers
115 views

Why did the Nazis invent videotelephony?

This claim that the Nazis invented two-way video telephony is astonishing and I almost thought it was a hoax. Except it's not, because it's copiously referenced to contemporary sources. So other than ...
10
votes
2answers
414 views

When did the parole of prisoners of war become unacceptable?

Prisoners of war in earlier centuries, especially officers, could be given temporary or permanent freedom in return for various conditions: A parole. This overlaps with the modern civilian use of ...
6
votes
1answer
160 views

How were 19th century American diplomats paid?

I just came across this line in H.W. Brands' Andrew Jackson biography, explaining why Jackson was initially uninterested in the presidency: "The pay was good, but the expenses of the office ate up the ...
3
votes
1answer
248 views

Nazi attitude towards pro-Nazi Jews

What was the stance of Nazi doctrine (officially or otherwise) towards pro-Nazi Jews? How did this attitude change (if at all) from the early-mid 30s to the early 40s? To illustrate one example where ...
6
votes
2answers
271 views

Is there a student of Arnold J Toynbee with an opinion about the state and fate of Western Civilization?

Toynbee studied history centering his work on the life and death of civilizations. As Wikipedia says: Toynbee argued that "Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder." For Toynbee, ...
3
votes
2answers
125 views

When did the socialist movement start becoming noteworthy in Russian history?

I'm not a historian but I've always been intrigued by modern Russian history, from the socialist revolution to the present. I'm thinking of reading more on the subject and want to know how far back in ...
3
votes
3answers
511 views

Why did George H. W. Bush select Dan Quayle as his running mate in 1988?

I've just been revisiting some quotes from Dan Qualyle. For example: I believe we are on an irreversible trend toward more freedom and democracy – but that could change. and We are ready ...
19
votes
2answers
2k views

Why didn't Hannibal attack Rome after the Battle of Cannae?

Hannibal Barca defeated 8 Roman legions in the Battle of Cannae. At that time Carthage also had control over Hispania. Why did Hannibal not seize Rome at that time?
6
votes
1answer
213 views

Why did Emperor Nero kill his mother and others?

Why did Nero kill his own mother? Was it true that she was dangerous to the point where it was "her life or his?" Did he have "good" reasons (in the sense of being understandable or acceptable at the ...
5
votes
1answer
81 views

Did anyone in Spain support the return of Alfonso XIII?

Alfonso XIII was deposed as King of Spain in 1931. As we all know, the Spanish republic in turn was overthrown in 1939. I know there were Falangists who wanted something Hitler-y, and Carlists who ...
15
votes
5answers
3k views

How well can cavalry fight infantry?

In the Battle of Pharsalus, Caesar's infantry won by throwing their spears at the horsemen's faces. So how come in Battle of Zama and many other battles, including the battle where Khalid ibn ...
1
vote
2answers
74 views

which faction 'won' elections to the continental congress?

I know there weren't modern day political parties, but what were the issues and major groupings of the three continental congresses? When the congress voted on something, were any 'party lines' ...
2
votes
1answer
151 views

Has any culture primarily worshipped an evil deity? [closed]

I was recently re-watching the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode Masks, (because I'm not a nerd even a little bit), and an interesting thought struck me: the culture portrayed in that episode ...

15 30 50 per page