12
votes
0answers
218 views

Why was Queretaro chosen as a fail-safe capital of Mexico?

According to this article on a person's experience in the country of Mexico, Querétaro was used as a temporary capital city of the Mexican Republic three times. What I am having trouble finding out ...
11
votes
0answers
138 views

When did songs extolling leaders of companies go out of fashion?

When recently visiting Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA I came across an exhibit called "Songs of the IBM". It's from 1930s and has a song called "Ever onward" which extols then IBM ...
8
votes
0answers
78 views

Was the Iraqi Mukhabarat modelled on the German Reichssicherheitshauptamt, and in what ways?

In Charles Stross (urban fantasy-ish) novel "The Atrocity Archives", it is claimed that the Iraqi Intelligence Service Mukhabrat was modelled on the Nazi-German Reichssicherheitshauptamt (RSHA). The ...
8
votes
0answers
132 views

How is history studied?

What are the unique and distinct features of the study of history in terms of: Epistemology Purpose Theory Method Methodology Does the study of history produce unique perceptions? Does the ...
8
votes
0answers
209 views

How much of an impact did the Roman emperors' civil wars have on their decision to debase the coinage?

From Adrian Goldsworthy's How Rome Fell: "Civil war remained a common event, ...the economy collapsed, as successive emperors massively devalued the coinage to pay for their wars." Other sources say ...
8
votes
0answers
201 views

How successful were Einsatzkommando Tunis and how much was Rommel complicit?

This Einsatzkommando was headed by SS officer Walter Rauff and according to his wikipedia article it had great effect on the local Jewish population. An example is given, a quote from a German TV ...
8
votes
0answers
25 views

Was the Church of St Simeon the Elder at Aleppo built while Simeon was still alive or decades after his death?

I recently read in Diarmaid MacCullochs 'A History of Christianity' that the pillar dweller and hermit, Simeon had a church built around him, almost like a "living exhibit in a Christian zoo". However ...
8
votes
0answers
130 views

What was done to improve the safety of jousts after the death of Henry II?

While jousting in a tournament to celebrate his daughter's marriage in 1559, France's Henry II received a splinter in the eye, and died not long afterwards. According to Wikipedia, this marked the ...
8
votes
0answers
265 views

What household servants would a Tudor gentleman have had?

There's a lot of easily-accessible information about the staffing of a Tudor nobleman's household, but very little about that of a Tudor gentleman's. Was it basically the same as a nobleman's? Or ...
7
votes
0answers
336 views

How did Rome's legal system work?

How was it decided if a case should be tried in Rome or in the province by the governor of that province? was the governor always the judge or were there exceptions? who were the lawyers? I know a lot ...
7
votes
0answers
142 views

Did Ben Franklin actually make any tofu?

It is well documented that Franklin was interested in tofu, which he called a sort of cheese made from beans, and he got a recipe for making it that he sent on to others. But no source that I have ...
7
votes
0answers
155 views

Rommel's letter to his wife from November 16, 1942

I'm looking for the original German version of Erwin Rommel's letter to his wife Lucie Rommel from November 16, 1942. You can find the English translation on page 354 of "The Rommel Papers". The ...
7
votes
0answers
215 views

Were there any battles in Continental Europe that were decided by “peasants with pitchforks?”

I can think of one such battle in the British Isles; the battle of Bannockburn in 1314 in Scotland. In that battle, a 14,000-man English army despoiled a bunch of "homeless" vagrants on their way to ...
7
votes
0answers
89 views

Did Britain briefly recognize Mahmud Barzanji as King of Kurdistan?

The wiki entry on Mahmud Barzanji is very poorly written and very far from neutral. I turned to the Russian entry which is at least well-written and contains many interesting facts - some of them ...
6
votes
0answers
51 views

Clauses against unifications in peace treaties

I have learned in school that the Treaty of Versailles (after World War I in 1919) contained a clause that forbade unification of Germany and Austria. Presumably it is Article 80: Germany ...
6
votes
0answers
78 views

Jewish diaspora in the late antiquity

Is it possible to estimate the distribution of Jews in the variety of cities they settled in the aftermath of expulsion from Palestine by Adrian in 135 AD and in the following few centuries of the ...
6
votes
0answers
114 views

White on Polish coat of arms

The Polish coat of arms is an eagle on the red field (background): In Poland it is always said that it is a White Eagle. This is mentioned in current Constitution (translated by me): Art. 28. ...
6
votes
0answers
114 views

what was the size of surface of a cereal crop needed per man per year during the Dark Ages in western europe?

If I'm a peasant during the dark ages, what surface (in meters (<- I am in advance on my time)) I need to farm to get enough cereal (for bread and brew) ? how many cereals (in kg (<- again, I'm ...
6
votes
0answers
197 views

Did Hannibal start the Second Punic War prematurely?

IN 221 BC, Hamilcar, Hannibal's father, made a peace with Rome that divided Spain north and south between Rome and Carthage. The latter got the larger "piece," the area shaded in green on the map ...
6
votes
0answers
109 views

Did genocide occur in the Football War?

In the Football War between El Salvador and Honduras, the El Salvador claimed that genocide had occurred in Honduras. However, was anybody actually prosecuted for these actions, or were these claims ...
6
votes
0answers
92 views

What was the societal wealth demographics when the major pyramids were built?

All this talk about wealth distribution (1% of US Citizens etc. etc.) got me wondering about the wealth distribution in other periods of history when - let's call them - great edifices were built. ...
6
votes
0answers
264 views

Were the Nazis the first to use phenol as a means of execution?

Phenol was discovered in 1834 by Friedlieb Ferdinand Runge.... Injections of phenol were used as a means of individual execution by the Nazis during the Second World War. It was originally used by ...
5
votes
0answers
48 views

Date of the death of Socrates

Question 1: The death of Socrates is usually said to have happened in 399 BC, but I've sometimes seen a question mark after the date. Is there actually a possible uncertainty about the exact year? ...
5
votes
0answers
87 views

What was the lena River Delta U-boat base in the Soviet Arctic used for?

In 1963 the body of a German navy NCO was found in Neelova Gulf with the remnants of his uniform and rifle ammunition. In 1985 Soviet helicopter pilot Peter Statsyukom discovered a small complex of ...
5
votes
0answers
104 views

Who deposited German fuel drums on a Japanese air base in the Kuriles in 1943?

The Imperial Japanese Navy operated two all-weather, heated, lit runways on Matsuwa Island in the Kurile island chain. This island is littered with German fuel drums manufactured in 1943. It also ...
5
votes
0answers
136 views

Historical examples of replacing blood heir by impostor?

Both fiction and (contemporary at the time) conspiracy theories have many examples of "The king chooses to place a worthy replacement on the throne instead of his own not-qualified-to-rule offspring; ...
5
votes
0answers
93 views

Why were there so many suffect consuls during the Principate?

As quoted from this wikipedia article, it states: If a consul died during his term (not uncommon when consuls were in the forefront of battle) or was removed from office, another would be ...
5
votes
0answers
49 views

When was the modern manuscript for the Torah agreed upon?

(This question is also asked on judaism.SE for a different approach.) Considering that variations have occurred in the Torah's text over time (I think the Gemara/Talmud may mention events where a few ...
5
votes
0answers
89 views

Were Uncles referred to by surname in Victorian England?

Merry Christmas, everybody! And speaking of Christmas ... In Charles Dickens' novelette, A Christmas Carol, the main character Ebeneezer Scrooge is referred to several times by others as "Uncle ...
5
votes
0answers
77 views

Did Palmerston contribute to Louis Philippe's downfall?

I am reading this book and have come across a slightly puzzling passage on p. 154: [Palmerston] kept on good terms with Louis Philippe of France until he felt, in 1846, that Louis was taking an ...
5
votes
0answers
201 views

Why did antique guns and swords from the Franco-Prussian War make part of the demilitarization program to which Germany was subjected?

As is well known, after the WW2 ended, the U.S. imposed a strong program of demilitarization to Germany. Can anybody explain the reason why the "antique guns and swords from the Franco-Prussian ...
5
votes
0answers
123 views

Is this really “Napoleon’s March”?

The Chabad/Lubavitch Jewish group have a tradition that this song originated as a military march played by Napoleon’s armies as they invaded Russia: ...
5
votes
0answers
246 views

Did Franco really ask “Why? Are they going somewhere?”

The story goes that Franco on his deathbed in 1975 hears the noise of a crowd outside and asks what it is. And is told: "The people of Spain have come to say goodbye" Franco replies: "Why? ...
5
votes
0answers
98 views

Were there any other systems which resemble the complex election procedure for the doge of Venice

I was fascinated by a passage in Thomas F. Madden's Venice: a New History describing the complex process used to elect the doge of Venice. This process is explained briefly here: Wikipedia: Doge of ...
5
votes
0answers
149 views

The Rosenberg diary and the functionalist-intentionalist debate

Today it was announced that the diary of Alfred Rosenberg was been found, after it had disappeared in 1946. Prima facie, this would seem to be a major piece of historical evidence for the ...
5
votes
0answers
121 views

Were women banned from entering the castle of Trakai?

According to legend, Vytautas the Great banned women from entering the Trakai Island Castle under penalty of death. I read it in Russian, it is called "The Horse of knyaz Vytautas". The plot is ...
5
votes
0answers
94 views

How many firearms were owned by civilian population between 1836 and 1912 in USA?

How many firearms in total were owned by civilian population between 1836 and 1912 in USA (cumulatively, not simultaneously)? The timeframe is what I would consider "Old West" timeframe, but starting ...
5
votes
0answers
59 views

How did Bedouins exercise tribal governance?

According to the Wikipedia article Bedouins travel together in groups of 1-2 family units however in the same article it mentions the presence of a Tribe who share common descent and are led by a ...
5
votes
0answers
363 views

Why has bidet use not spread to the northern countries of Europe?

As wikipedia states, the bidet is quite common in southern European countries (in Italy for example, it is found in 95% of households), in the Middle East and in East Asia. Conversely, bidets are ...
5
votes
0answers
52 views

Were any California presidios conquered?

During the Spanish and Mexican eras in California, there were five presidios in the region: San Diego, Santa Barbara, Monterey, San Francisco, and Sonoma. Were any of these ever conquered, taken ...
5
votes
0answers
218 views

How did the bureaucratic culture of Great Britain affect its response to the protests over the Stamp Act of 1765?

I'm writing a paper on the era of the Stamp Act (1765) concerning primarily the clash of legal cultures between what was then the Colonies of North America and the mother country, Great Britain. You ...
5
votes
0answers
74 views

How did Pancrace Royer die?

Pancrace Royer was well known French harpsichordist who published a book in 1746. He died in 1755, but I can't find the cause of death (would probably be easier if I knew French). Does anyone know of ...
4
votes
0answers
50 views

Where were visa documents invented?

Do we know where the first Visa documents were issued? The history of passports is old with Wikipedia dating them back to 450 BC. But when did Visas come into the picture? The etymology suggests a ...
4
votes
0answers
41 views

Axis use of Vila Cisneros during WW2 for contact with South America?

I have read that a German U-boat refueling at Villa Cisneros was attacked and sunk. I have also read that After Germany Invaded Russia in 1941 a Japanese technical mission returning to Japan was flown ...
4
votes
0answers
71 views

What is the current academic consensus on Charlemagne's genealogy?

Every source I have seen agrees that Charlemagne's ancestral tree begins as follows: Charlemagne (c. 747 – 814) Pepin the Short (c. 714 – 768) Charles Martel (c. 688 – 741) Pepin of Herstal (c. 635 ...
4
votes
0answers
35 views

When were the “War Relief Toy Works” set up and by whom?

There are a number of toys in existence - particularly Noah's Arks - which originate from the 'War Relief Toy Works', which was based in Stoke Newington, a suburb of London, UK. A representative ...
4
votes
0answers
74 views

What did the Crusaders really wear?

What did those who walked the First Crusade wear? I'm not just talking about the noblemen etc. but also the poor people who allegedly went (or is that a myth?). And how did they dress according to ...
4
votes
0answers
65 views

What government functions, if any, did the archchancellor of the HRE actually exercise?

Although the Holy Roman Empire was famous for being a loose confederation of largely independent feudal lords, it nevertheless possessed institutions akin to a unified state even near the end of its ...
4
votes
0answers
94 views

What is the ancestry of the Robertians, progenitors of the Bourbon dynasty?

The countries Spain and Luxembourg are currently ruled by kings from the House of Bourbon, so I thought I'd try to trace back their (patrilineal) ancestry as far as possible. Well, the Bourbons are ...
4
votes
0answers
37 views

Asir's role in the Arab Revolt

The Arab Revolt against the Ottomans is portrayed as being primarily a Hejazi phenomenon but I have read (briefly) that Asir, a territory between Hejaz and Yemen revolted first and the Sherif of Mecca ...

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