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29

The nature of the silk road meant that it had to pass through commercial centres. "The Silk Road was largely fragmented and very few merchants travelled the whole route. Goods were passed from one merchant to another until it reached the final buyers" source So deviation over the steppes wasn't really possible as it was not the intermediaries goal to ...


24

The name comes from the Alemanni, a Germanic tribe. Germany is known by a variety of names throughout the world, you can find a comprehensive list on Wikipedia: Names of Germany. See also: Is there a reason why Germany (Deutschland) is called so many different things in other European languages? (German Language Stack Exchange)


20

This seemed to have come from Persia's freedom from the Qajars and some nationalism on the part of Germany during WWII influencing the Shah's decisions. So it was originally changed in 1935 and not 1979, unless you are only referring to the Islamic Republic addition, which was done at the Ayatollah's will, more than likely. The name of the country in ...


16

Alexander, for the most part, left things unchanged in the lands he conquered. He didn't impose Greek customs, respected (or perhaps ignored) local religions and cultures and allowed a certain degree of self government that, for several of the territories of the former Achaemenid empire, was quite a refreshing change. Not everyone under his rule accepted him,...


13

Just take a look at any political map, let it be Classical period, or early Medieval times. When travelling to China you need water, supplies of food, fodder, etc. Also it's safer to spend a night in a city or some kind of inn instead of open steppe spaces. Then what Joe mentioned, between the cities you've got roads, which again - are safer. South of Black ...


12

If you look at Xerxes' route, the answer is obvious: Source: Map showing the Greek world during the Greco-Persian Wars (ca. 500–479 BC). Xerxes' army moved North from Sardis, seeking alliances with or conquering Ionian cities. There was extremely little of interest for Xerxes after Abydos (the crossing point, according to Herodotus). Going all the way ...


12

As the commenters have stated, there are several reasons "Persia" isn't one empire, but a succession of empires controlling the same area, more or less in the period. Rome under the Republic and Empire was a single continuous government. The various Persian governments tended to get knocked around in head to head competition with Mediterranean powers. ...


11

There is a Wikipedia article on the topic, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Names_of_Germany Because of Germany's geographic position in the centre of Europe, as well as its long history as a non-united region of distinct tribes and states, there are many widely varying names of Germany in different languages, perhaps more so than for any other European ...


10

War Elephants in the west were a military fad that started with Alexander the Great's encounter with them at the battle of Gaugamella. They became popular for a while, but their ineffectiveness for Hannibal at Zama 113 years later spelled the beginning of the end for the fad. The extinction of the Syran and North African species iced it. By the beginning of ...


10

Long lasted wars between Sassanians and Byzantine empire had made cripple armed forces of both of them and made their borders vulnerable. Lakhmids were acting as a buffer state between nomad Arabs and Sassanians. but Khosrow II made them into neutral force practically. the practice made Iran's southern border more vulnerable even more. Kavadh II massacred a ...


9

Gaykhatu Khan's paper money was visually similar to the contemporary Chinese notes. It was an oblong certificate, block printed on possibly papyrus or bark paper. The Islamic creed of Shahada was printed at the top, followed by Gaykhatu's name, as Irinjin Turji, in Arabic. The denomination was printed at the centre of the note, and encircled. Beneath this ...


8

Ballistae and other ancient pieces of "artillery" are siege engines. Their primary purpose is to provide fire support within the context of laying siege to a town or fortress; the heavy bolts could lay waste to wooden fortifications (especially the kind of light mobile protection against archers). Siege weapons are heavy, very slow to move, and have a low ...


8

The Silk Way was not a single road, but rather a net of roads. And the ways Amudarja/Uzboj (Amudarja went to Caspian Sea till 16 Century, for example) - Caspian Sea - Volga - Don - Azov sea - Black sea - Konstantinople (variant: Aral-Caspian Sea by foot) was in use -especially for long periods when Amudarja was switched to the Caspian Sea and some stable ...


8

I conjecture that there is one more reason. The historians you mention belong to the "Western European/North American" culture. It is a direct descendant of the Roman empire (in the cultural sense). Perhaps if you read Persian historians you obtain a different picture. And I am sure that if you read Chinese historians, you will learn a very different ...


7

In 1944-45, the late forensic anthropologist John Lawrence Angel studied Ancient Greek skeletal remains. His results were 162 cm for men and 153 cm for women. He only had a rather small sample size at the time, though. Right after his death, excavation began on the cemetery of the Magna Graecia colony-city of Metapontum. The Metaontum necropolis was ...


7

If you are expecting a source against Darius the Mede, as noted in the Bible, then you may be sorely disappointed since there are no primary sources that have made any connection between the king as noted in the story of Daniel and any living king of Persia. If you can't find a primary source on the king who issued the edict then you are going to have a ...


6

My family came from Western Ukraine and my grandfather attended University in Chernotsy and Vienna. He said that historically our family were merchants on a branch of the Silk Road that ran through Ukraine. Ukraine was a bulwark in the hundreds of years of warfare between Europe and Turkey and it is absurd to think that a substantial amount of trade did ...


6

It was a combination of both. Alexander the Great encouraged the spread of Greek culture as noted by Plutarch in his work On the Fortunes of Alexander: But if you examine the results of Alexander's instruction, you will see that he educated the Hyrcanians to respect the marriage bond, and taught the Arachosians to till the soil, and persuaded the ...


6

Edit: I think I have to revise quite a bit. One thing is that the Peloponnesian Wars went through various stages which themselves got different titles (Ionian, Corinthian, etc). As a result the poster on Yahoo Answers may be quite right. In the Ionian War, which crushed Athens, the Persians provided the gold for the Spartan Fleet. In the Corinthian War, ...


5

It is not true. The name Iran is old enough and comes from Ayran which means the land of Aryans but Reza Shah suspected westerners' motives in using the name Persia instead of Iran and tried to change the name to Iran again. Reza Shah had extreme nationalist ideas, and the Nazi regime cheated him and abused these feelings in the second world war. Westerners ...


4

Artillery was a big man's trade as much 2,000 years ago as it is now, or was in Napoleon's age. Whether it is lugging the shells around today, or winding the windlass then, strength is vital for a better rate of fire, and strength derives from physical size. Further, in addition to a team of gorillas to man the piece, a gun layer (or two, as a spare) is ...


3

To add to @Yannis Rizos's post, what has come down to us as the Germanic tribal name Alemanni is actually the Latin name for what that tribe called itself. The tribe called itself the High Germanic equivalent of the modern German "alle männer", or "all men"/"all mankind", because they themselves were all the people they usually referred to. The Romans ...


3

It's tempting to think of war elephants as some kind of super cavalry, but in reality they were far from that. War elephants were unpredictable and hard to control. At times they were as dangerous to your own troops as they were to the enemy. They were primarily a psychological weapon and used as such. You line them up and send them running at the enemy ...


3

The satrapy system meant that many large regions of the empire were given autonomy - as long as they accepted the current Achaemenid king as their overlord complete with tribute and soldiers. And each satrap would be in charge of his own vast region. For the more remote areas of the empire, i.e. Central Asia (not the same as the Middle East) that were ...


3

As per T.E.D's suggestion, to summarize the detailed answer I have posted already, following are main points: Safavids main target was the Sunni Muslim community of Iran which was the majority of Iranian population at inception of Safavid Empire. They considered them possible fifth column since main rivals of Safavids were Sunni Ottomans who were expanding ...


2

I found two excellent articles on this question one in the 27th volume of Middle Eastern Studies vol. 27, no. 1, pg. 35-45 entitled "Iranian Nationalism and Reza Shah" by M. Reza Ghods, and the other in the journal Iranian Studies, volume 26 no. 3-4, by the Iranian expert Houchang E. Chehabi entitled "Staging the Emperor's New Clothes: Dress Codes and Nation-...


2

In general, this type of thing is not well documented for Archaemenid history. Also, in Persian administration there was a great deal of autonomy and variation across satrapies, so what would be true for one, might be different in another. Speaking of royal judges, which were similar to Roman magistrates, for example: The royal judges are attested here ...


2

In Portugal it is called "Alemanha", not "Alman". It is that way because of the tribe living in that region of Europe, "Álamos" Source: I'm Portuguese.


2

Today I stumbled across Machiavelli's answer to this question (at least with reference to the Persian Empire) in chapter 4 of The Prince, where he writes, Considering the difficulties which men have had to hold to a newly acquired state, some might wonder how, seeing that Alexander the Great became the master of Asia in a few years, and died whilst ...


2

To a large extent both Alexander and his father were inspired by the Ten THousand, as well as the Greeks' dramatic victories against the invasions by Darius and Xerxes. In these campaigns the Greek heavy hoplite infantry had proved itself more than a match for the best that the Persians could muster. Once united under the Macedonian mantle, a force of ...



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