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Jul
9
comment Why do some countries call Germany “Alman” too?
It is worth noting that while Italian uses Germania for the country, it uses tedesco (cognate with deutch) as the adjective and for a German person. Meanwhile English uses Dutch as the adjective for a neighbouring country.
May
27
comment Is Taiwan always a part of People's Republic of China?
The "People's Republic of China" was founded in 1949. Its government in Beijing has at all times since then claimed to be the legitimate government of all of China (denied by the "Republic of China" government in Taipei) and that Taiwan is part of China (not denied by the government in Taipei). The government in Beijing has not exercised rule over Taiwan since the founding of the People's Republic of China.
Mar
31
comment How did British queens get power over kings despite a male-dominant society?
Philip of Spain (Mary Tudor's husband) and William of Orange (Mary Stuart's husband) were each King of England etc. where their wives were the heirs, while George of Denmark, Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha and Philip of Greece were not, so it is difficult to say that there has been a consistent rule.
Feb
20
comment What is the historical background of the current Ukraine crisis?
West Ukraine was mainly conquered by Poland in 1919 rather than by the Soviet Union (who took the rest of Ukraine).
Nov
11
comment Why did the welfare state succeed in Bismarck Germany but lagged in 20th-century Britain?
@LennartRegebro: You said "the welfare state succeeded in Germany but failed in Britain", so I hardly started the discussion. Private spending on health is also higher in Germany than the UK, so perhaps Germans find their insurance system less sufficient than UK citizens find their state health provision.
Nov
10
comment Why did the welfare state succeed in Bismarck Germany but lagged in 20th-century Britain?
There is a slight problem here: German healthcare is significantly more expensive than UK healthcare (total health expenditure is 11.3% of GDP in Germany compared with 9.4% in the UK; German GDP per capita is higher too) but life expectancy at birth is marginally higher in the UK (81.1 years in the UK compared with 80.8 in Germany). It seems that the larger number of health interventions in Germany do not actually produce healthier people.
Nov
1
comment Could invocation and revocation of bastardry be used to manipulate primogeniture?
Henry VIII did interesting things with his daughters and might have considered doing so with his son Henry Fitzroy
Oct
22
comment Have famous rabbis ever converted to Islam?
@Coelacanth - Indeed, and for his followers he removed some of the pre-Messianic rituals such as fasting on the Tenth of Tevet, so they accepted him as able to give legal rulings.
Oct
16
comment Have famous rabbis ever converted to Islam?
@Felix Goldberg: Whatever you wish - you asked for a famous rabbi. You may have fallen into DVK and Coelacanth's "no true Scotsman" trap. In fact his claims to authority not restricted to a small group, but instead divided Jewish communities with most synagogues praying for him, and were for example endorsed by the Chief Rabbi of Amsterdam.
Oct
13
comment Is whig history generally considered to be 'bad' history?
A Whig historian would not have claimed that a parliamentary monarchy was a historical inevitability, but that it was an ideal situation which the British achieved through certain steps in their history and which other countries (notably France) failed to achieve. But events such as the English Civil War were only positive in that they taught later English monarchs and political classes to avoid absolutism either in an individual or in an ideology.
Oct
7
comment Is there any evidence that the book of Isaiah was written before Cyrus?
@Coelacanth: The traditional view is that sections were added to the book of Isaiah later. That is why Isaiah's name does not appear after chapter 39. Some later readers may have decided otherwise, but such interpretations are not more in the biblical context than the 19th century revival of the Flat Earth theory.
Sep
25
comment Who believed the earth was flat?
Wikipedia states "During the early Church period, with some exceptions, most held a spherical view, for instance, Augustine, Jerome, and Ambrose to name a few", so to emphasise the views of a few may be unbalanced
Sep
25
comment Is there any evidence that the book of Isaiah was written before Cyrus?
Your anthology point is key here. Indeed many think there were three parts, chapters 1-39, 40-55, and 56-65, written at different times and probably by different people.
Sep
25
comment Is there any evidence that the book of Isaiah was written before Cyrus?
It is not a prophesy as it was written in the past tense. Cross posted at judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/31318/… and skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/17871/…
Sep
25
comment Which roman emperors were not ethnically Latin?
The question was probably not meaningful at the time: for example Maximian came from a family of shopkeepers in Pannonia or perhaps Illyricum (so modern Serbia/Bosnia/Croatia), neither of which were originally Latin but both were very Roman at the time.
Dec
23
comment What happened to the Imperial Byzantine Family after the collapse of the empire?
Later sultans did claim the right either to nominate the Ecumenical Patriarch or at least to ratify his election, a power of the Eastern Roman Emperor. The Republic of Turkey still places conditions on who that person might be, such as requiring him to have been born in Turkey.
Dec
18
comment Was it ever illegal for two people of different religions to marry in the UK?
The civil laws prohibited a Catholic priest conducting a marriage between a Catholic and a Protestant across the whole of Ireland. But an Anglican priest could conduct such a marriage. So such marriages were legal. The problem was whether the Catholic church would then regard such marriages as valid.
Oct
11
comment Evolution of the names of slaves
There was a substantial difference in the cultural disruptions associated with chattel slavery from Africa and with indentured labour from India.