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Jan
12
comment What's the last record of pagan believers in Europe?
A lot of modern adherents to native neo-pagan religions belong to reconstructed faiths, not to continuous ones. This specifically includes Wiccans and "Heathens" (Odinists). Nothing wrong with that from a philosophical standpoint, but it makes them not qualify for the purposes of this question.
Jan
10
awarded  Good Answer
Jan
8
comment What did Vikings wear in cold wet conditions at sea?
@Semaphore - In both of Leif Erikson's two most well-known voyages he was blown off-course. The same goes for Bjarni Herjolfsson. Also, it is said that only about half of Eric the Red's fleet of settlement ships actually made it to Greenland (the rest either were lost at sea, or forced to turn back). So apparently getting caught in bad weather wasn't unheard of, and (some) folk managed to survive it somehow.
Jan
7
revised Were there more than 4 River Valley Civilizations?
added 295 characters in body
Jan
7
comment What, if anything, did Native Americans know about the rest of the world?
@Gangnus - I see. Very interesting. Although there are other explanations (for instance, mtDNA and y-chromosome studies often show very different origins for male and female lineages). In my mind the important thing here is that both approaches are independently suggesting that Polynesians came from the east, not from the west.
Jan
7
comment What, if anything, did Native Americans know about the rest of the world?
@Gangnus - exactly. Not that one piece of evidence should be considered conclusive, but in this case linguistic studies for the last few decades have pointed to the same place (Formosa to be specific, but obviously humans got there somehow, and Asia is the only credibly nearby source). So the genetics is just corroboration.
Jan
6
comment Were there more than 4 River Valley Civilizations?
I answered as if it was asking about areas (river valleys) where agriculture and multi-city societies were independently developed (not borrowed from elsewhere). Seems a legit question to me, and IMHO Wikipedia's one page that purports to cover this currently has issues.
Jan
6
revised Were there more than 4 River Valley Civilizations?
added 25 characters in body
Jan
6
comment Were there more than 4 River Valley Civilizations?
As for the actual sites, the Olmec were in a lowland (swamp) area, so lots of rivers. However, the Coatzacoalcos river seems to be the likeliest original river. The Caral seem to have originated in the Supe river valley. We aren't sure about the New Guineans. There could easily have been a mother river valley, we just don't know.
Jan
6
comment Were there more than 4 River Valley Civilizations?
6 sites, 2 of which have two river valleys, and one of those of which may have agriculture independently developed on each of the two rivers. And they missed New Guinea. So I'd just try to remember the places/cultures, rather than run around blindly saying "6, because Wikipedia says so".
Jan
6
answered Were there more than 4 River Valley Civilizations?
Jan
6
comment What happened to the German WW II debt?
@o.m. - Interesting, but if I only wanted examples Semaphore's was sufficient. What I wanted was specifics on them being actually being designated "the legal successor entity".
Jan
6
comment What happened to the German WW II debt?
@Semaphore - I'd be interested in specifics on that. Agreeing to take up some of the debts is a different thing from actually being the legal successor (which presumably would obligate them to cover all debts and liabilities including possibly Shoa-related deaths and thefts).
Jan
6
comment What happened to the German WW II debt?
It seems quite unlikely, as the entity that owed the money no longer existed. That's one of the risks you take when you invest in a bond.
Jan
5
comment Why does Edinburgh Castle's one o'clock gun fire at 1pm instead of, say, noon?
Deleted a very interesting (but OT) discussion about the creation of standard time. That might be good fodder for a question, if asked properly.
Jan
4
revised How were Mesoamerican inks produced?
added 71 characters in body
Jan
4
revised How were Mesoamerican inks produced?
added 303 characters in body
Jan
4
revised How were Mesoamerican inks produced?
added 303 characters in body
Jan
4
answered How were Mesoamerican inks produced?
Jan
2
answered Has there been any culture where men typically have longer hair than women?