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21

The usual explanation is that Japanese culture believed the soul resides in the abdomen. Since the ritual of seppuku or harakiri is usually meant to provide an honourable death, cutting open the abdomen was an act that "bares the soul", so to speak. The Meiji educator Dr. Nitobe Inazō wrote in his famous Bushido: the Soul of Japan that: [T]he choice of ...


18

The first modern police force in the United States was the Philadelphia Police Department, and according to the Officer Down Memorial page, the first PPD officer killed in the line of duty was Watchman Steven Heimer, shot at the beginning of a riot on January 8, 1828. Of course, police are not the only law enforcement in the U.S.— there were sheriffs and ...


17

TL;DR: No such code, but most equestrian statues at Gettysburg happen to match it by chance. From http://www.snopes.com/military/statue.asp: The hoof code mostly holds true in terms of Gettysburg equestrian statues, but there is at least one exception. James Longstreet wasn't wounded in this battle yet his horse has one foot raised. (illustration ...


9

According to this page, 298 Senators have died in office (it does not include the last member to die, who died in 2010. I included him in the previously stated number). According to this page, 815 House Representatives have died in office (it does not include the last three members to die in office. I included them in the previously stated number). Our ...


8

They didn't end up in any one particular place. In more recent decades, discovered skulls are generally returned to Japan, or disposed of in various ways (lack of identification). Certainly at least some would have been gotten rid of (through burial or otherwise) since WW2 was still ongoing. American authorities did not officially approve of the practise. ...


7

Henry I, the 3rd norman King of England, died after eating a surfeit of lampreys after going on a hunting trip while ill. Apparently eating them was against the advice of his physician. Lampreys were pretty common fare in Early Medieval Britain but are pretty gross eel-like fish that still happily inhabit English rivers today. It is likely that they weren't ...


6

It's most likely illness. Takeda Shingen's death has been reported as pulmonary tuberculosis in the Buke Jiki, 武家事紀, and as throat or stomach cancer in the Kōyō Gunkan 甲陽軍鑑. There's a theory that he was killed by a bullet or bullet wound, but this is generally regarded as a popular myth. It is only found in pro-Tokugawa writings (i.e. propaganda) produced ...


6

Long story short, yes, he did. He was for a brief time military counsellor for the sultan of Ternate (around 1512). Ternate lies on longitude 127 East.


6

While I can't find much on when the sword was adopted (at least for the moment) I have found several sources that point towards answers for some of your other questions here. It appears that the method of death varied depending on who you were, or who was punishing you. The following refers to the reign of Caligula. Many men of honourable rank were ...


5

Only the Upper Class was given the honour of execution by beheading - for commoners hanging and burning at the stake were used instead. Consequently beheadings were infrequent, and the executioner often inexperienced. A swift beheading required a calm sure swing, and the custom of having the condemned prisoner both forgive and pay the executioner was ...


5

According to this site: http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/2042196 Ivan the Terrible killed at least 60,000 people during his reign, but only publicly admitted to 3,750 people. Doing further research at this (http://www.guidetorussia.com/ivan-the-terrible.asp) website shows that the 60,000 killed was during a single event, so there was quite possibly many more ...


5

No one will give you the exact number. Some historians, for example, tells about 200,000 or even 700,000 killed in Novgorod, but at that time the entire population of the city was about 40,000. Historian Ruslan G. Skrynnikov (1931-2009) in his books «Начало опричнины» (1966), «Опричный террор» (1969), «Иван Грозный» (1975) gives the number of 3,000-4,000 ...


5

Found information and more or less contemporary sources on Google Books (here, here and here, for example) and in gallica.fr (here), but no source cares to say how he died, only hinting that it was sudden and unexpected; the only person I found who said something about how he died was Voltaire, who, in his letters, didn't hide his rejoicing at Royer's death ...


4

Is there any truth in this, or was it a tradition at any point or place? It is an urban myth. Although I would have liked it to be true. It was discussed on the quiz show QI and on snopes.


4

Peter the Great died due to disease.


4

This is a common misconception, cremation was not universal in ancient Greece. The Greeks had various funerary customs, that depended not only on local practices and customs but also on the social status of the deceased. Cremation was fairly common, however that doesn't mean that burial wasn't. In fact the more common practice in post Mycenaean times was ...


4

To answer your immediate question, the sarcophagus would have been for a wealthy Roman. In the case of the Genzano sarcophagus you cite, like many similar ones, the name of the deceased is unknown. During the high Imperial period of Rome, 200-400 A.D., sarcophagi such as these were popular. They were often decorated in high relief and contained mythological ...


3

Yes indeed. As early as 1346, corpses with symptoms of the Black Death seem to have been catapulted by the Mongols into the city of Caffa, Crimea during a siege. Reference: Wheelis M., Biological warfare at the 1346 siege of Caffa. Emerg Infect Dis, Sep 2002. Available here It may be noted that this use was not very effective, since knowledge of the ...


3

There was Atlit Detainee Camp, a prison built by the British to hold Jewish immigrants. POWs from the Arab armies as well as Palestinian irregular forces were put there but all were released shortly after the war's end in 1949. Contrary to the wishes of the organizers of Israel Apartheid week,it was not an extermination/torture camp. For a few years after ...


3

As Mr. Durden says, any estimate is going to have a very wide range/confidence interval. If you want an answer to the question you asked, you're probably better off asking in a math stack exchange about statistics. Having said that, 10 minutes of research will answer your question. Starting with the page you cite and checking the references, the List of ...


3

There are numerous references to Christian martyrs having been killed by scaphism. As best as I can tell, these are referring to reports of an execution in A.D. 363 during the reign of Julian. As it was retold in the The History of Christian Martyrdom: Marcus, bishop of Arethusa, having destroyed a pagan temple in that city, erected a christian church ...


2

Ancient Egypt is thought to be the origination of the funeral tombstone, however the original name was Stele/Stela, and in plural stelae, comes from the latin, to stand. Stelae have been documented back to the first dynasty - 2890 B.C., they were used later by many number of other cultures. The highest recorded use is by Attica in Greece, example would be ...


2

I'm not sure, but here is a good candidate: Experts suspect White was killed while trying to disarm a 9-inch, 75-pound naval cannonball, a particularly potent explosive with a more complex fuse and many times the destructive power of those used by infantry artillery. Biemeck and Peter George, co-author of a book on Civil War ordnance, believe White ...


1

In addition to the soul is in the bowels explanation, I read recently that the reason they chose a painful easy to die is to punish themselves. So a samurai who had committed a capital offense was going to die, but by choosing a painful method of dying he is giving himself additional punishment to earn forgiveness. This may not apply to all seppuku cases, ...


1

In the Philippines, some of my teachers have already settled this fact. Ferdinand Magellan circumnavigated the world in two trips. He was the second do it in two trips. (first, his ventures in Ternate and second trip, the expedition from 1519 to his death in 1521). Sebastian de Cano circumnavigated the world in one trip. Enrique of Malacca (Magellan's ...


1

I believe that the ax part of a fasces was symbolic of the magistrate's authority to order executions. The Romans are alleged to have also beheaded people with devices similar to guillotines. Any source on the history of the guillotine should mention some earlier devices similar to the guillotine used in various times and places. Thus if you read simply ...


1

According to data table http://hist1.narod.ru/Science/Russia/Crisis.htm#_edn7 for one community in NW Rissia, the main reason of population decrease in the catastrophe of 1570-1571 were taxes ( together with road works 50 cases of an owner disappearing/death), oprichnina as direct reason - 11%, hunger - 20, epydemies - 11. So, minimally 2/3 cases of ...


1

Yes. In fact, the Nazis appear to be the only people to have ever used phenol for executions. Primarily, the purpose of using lethal injection is to reduce suffering and "sanitize" the process of executions. If he protocol for administering these drugs is inadequate, lethal injection can cause great pain and be very drawn out. Phenol was used primarily as ...



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