Questions tagged [europe]

It is the second smallest continent, forming the Western extension of Eurasia.

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25
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5answers
11k views

Who were the pre-Celtic inhabitants of Western Europe?

I've heard it said that the Basque are conjectured to be the last remnant of Pre-Celtic Western Europe. When would have these people existed? What evidence do we have for their culture and habitation ...
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0answers
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What were the contemporary European reactions of de Vlamingh's sightings of black swans?

Willem de Vlamingh is reportedly the first European to have seen black swans near modern-day Perth, Western Australia in 1697. The 'black swan' had existed in Europe as a metaphor for about fifteen ...
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0answers
109 views

What determined who would be on the front lines of a large infantry engagement? [duplicate]

In Ancient and Middle Aged European Armies, what decided whether a soldier was at the front lines or just in the normal center-back? Was it a status symbol or honor to be in the front lines? Please ...
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2answers
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Who is this statue of?

Purchased it from an Italian leather shop in Budapest Hungary. Curious to find out the history behind it. I was recently informed it may be of a Hungarian cowboy. His outfit looks a bit formal. It ...
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3answers
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Why did few French and no Dutch pilots (but many Poles and Czechs) take part in the Battle of Britain?

Among the non-British pilots, at least 141 were Polish, 84 Czech and 28 Belgian, but only 13 were French and none were Dutch, Norwegian or Danish. The reasons why there were many Polish, Czech and ...
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2answers
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Did medieval Europeans really walk around barefoot in winter?

Luaan posted a comment on a question, as follows (emphasis mine): Take an old-school shoe with no rubber, and you'll see that it's extremely slippery on wet surfaces - medieval Europeans went ...
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9answers
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Why did Native Americans die from European diseases while Europeans didn't catch serious diseases from the New World?

Why did Native Americans die of European diseases while Europeans didn't have serious diseases from the New World? I read that most Native American victims of colonization in the new world died of ...
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2answers
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Did people shoot from both sides of the bow in medieval times?

Most modern archers are taught to shoot with Mediterranean style; that is, putting the arrow on the left side of the bow (if they're right handed) and pulling the string with 3 fingers. Some claim ...
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Has the 'indefensible-castles-for-nobles-to-discuss-but-peasants-to-gape-at' theory been proposed for Continental Western Europe?

I did try and make the title shorter but I didn't really know how to describe this as "the Liddiard and Morris theory" wouldn't make sense to many people. If someone can word it neater then ...
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1answer
261 views

Was there Nazi Collaboration at an Institutional level in Poland?

Following recent legal regulations in Poland prohibiting any association of Polish culpability with the Holocaust and concentration camps, the question that arises is whether there was any Polish ...
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Was there a European country that held a referendum about adopting English in universities?

I vaguely remember that there was a European country (not the UK or Ireland) that held a referendum about adopting English as the primary language of instruction in universities. The referendum failed....
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1answer
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What was the military makeup of the Baltic tribes/Lithuania from 1200 to 1500 AD?

There is quite a lot written on the Teutonic Order and its military, but I'm having a harder time finding any good English sources on the military of one of its chief foes, Lithuania and the other ...
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Is there any evidence of pre-European contact spread of Eurasian-origin diseases in Australia, e.g., from Kilwan traders? [closed]

I know that Indonesians had been in touch with Aboriginals, and that the Cholas made it to Australia as well. Even coins from the East African Kilwa Sultanate have been found in Australia! If there ...
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1answer
237 views

Who or what were the Nassadista?

I have encountered several references to Nassadista in a 16th century Latin manuscript. As far as I can tell the noun is masculine, first declension (nominative plural Nassadistæ). Context implies ...
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4answers
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When was the concept of Europe as a singular political unit conceived?

When was the concept of Europe as a singular political unit conceived? When did people start to think of themselves as sharing a similar European culture and calling themselves European? For this ...
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1answer
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How frequently did monasteries attack other monasteries in Early Medieval Western Europe?

Recently, I saw this passage in M & H. Whittock, ‘The Viking Blitzkrieg’ (referring to Ireland) of the 113 attacks on monasteries between 795 and 820, only twenty-six were carried out by ...
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How did the Hansa organize river trade in the 14th and 15th centuries?

How did the Hansa accommodate the transition from sea to river trade along a trade route? Would river travel have been controlled by one group of people, e.g., Guild of the River Oder Merchants? Would ...
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1answer
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Were eastern weapons ever seen in medieval Europe and western weapons ever seen in medieval Asia? [closed]

Like could some trader in medieval France be selling a katana or urumi amongst his wares that he obtained in his travels? Could a merchant in Japan have a zweihander or flamberge in his collection?
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1answer
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Where and when were air guns used in a major battle?

In the 18th century some European armies had air guns at their disposal. I remember that during some major battle sharpshooters from Tirol used air guns to deadly effect on the troops of the opposing ...
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2answers
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Did Hungarian Army ever use crescent banners?

I was reading about Battle of Mohi between Mongol Empire and Kingdom of Hungary. The Wikipedia contains this artistic depiction of the battle: The cavalry on left hand looks like Mongols while ...
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2answers
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What was used for writing in 15th century Europe?

What sort of pens/quills would be used? Would paper, cover and bindings be readily available?
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4answers
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Are there equivalents of the Domesday Book for other (French or German) duchies?

Is the Domesday Book a one-off census in the wake of the Norman conquest? One can imagine that William wanted an accurate feudal picture of his new kingdom but was it the norm? Did other dukes and ...
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2answers
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How did cities operate in medieval times?

Modern fiction is often filled with fantasy versions of the Middle Ages, from Lord of the Rings to Game of Thrones, and everything in between, but how did the reality of this trope operate? There ...
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Do these depictions of hunt in medieval Catholic churches have the same symbolic meaning? If not, what is it?

I have come across 3 depictions of a hunt in Catholic churches. The first two are tiles that were on the floors of an English abbey and a church not far from Reims, France; I could not find any ...
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2answers
230 views

How would “distraint of knighthood” law in medieval England fit with the fact that all knights must be of noble birth?

I've read recently about “distraint of knighthood” law in medieval England started by Henry III but I found it very strange indeed. This law forced all rich people who has 40 £ or more to be knighted ...
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1answer
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What percentage of the population were serfs by region/year?

Where can I find statistics on the percentage of the population that were serfs, ideally broken down by country/region and by year? Even very rough estimates would be helpful, but unfortunately I've ...
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3answers
420 views

When the outbreak of World War II was foreseeable, were any European commoners able to pre-emptively emigrate?

When the outbreak of World War II was foreseeable, or at least a conflict of some proportions was, were any common Europeans able to preemptively emigrate? From reading some other questions and ...
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4answers
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What authority did the Catholic Church have over European monarchs from 900–1450?

I recently described the Catholic Church as a superpower during the Middle Ages and was surprised a respected member of the board (LangLangC) objected to that characterization and thought the Catholic ...
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6answers
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How did Western leaders justify NATO's eastwards expansion after promising the Soviet leadership it won't happen?

Western leaders apparently promised Soviet premier Mikhail Gorbachev that NATO would not expand eastwards and threaten Soviet security interests. Leaders named include Baker, Bush, Genscher, Kohl, ...
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11answers
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Why were people from the Asian Steppes able to militarily dominate Europeans on a repeated basis?

From the Huns through the Mongolians, why were nomadic people from the east able to create such havoc in Europe? Was it an endless 'first mover' advantage with horse domestication? Was it a higher ...
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1answer
105 views

Were people really as haphazardly *burned at the stake* back in the day in Europe as they make it out to have been? [closed]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amalrician This is just one of countless articles/stories I've read over the years about how some crazy folks in Europe burned other, equally crazy folks at the stake -- ...
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Where did the Crusaders go after 1291?

With most historians saying the Crusades stopped in 1291, and the disappearance of the Crusader states (Outremer), I'm left to wonder: what happened to the Europeans who had built a life there? Did ...
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1answer
292 views

Is there a place in Europe that has never been Christian?

Before the advent of Catholic and Orthodox Christianity, Europe had numerous religions over at least 40 thousand years, as archaeologic evidence shows. Is there any place/community where Celtic, ...
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2answers
1k views

Who were the first “businessmen” to rival the kings throughout the world? [closed]

The merchants seem to have existed for as long as human history. But when did they begin to "take over" the kings? By that I mean, by the time of the "tycoons" like the Oil and Train people of the ...
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1answer
84 views

What was the societal structure of Celtic culture in the Hallstatt period? [closed]

What was the societal structure of Celtic culture in the Hallstatt period? There does not seem to be much information online about this. My preliminary research consists of looking on Wikipedia for ...
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1answer
675 views

Were groups (or 'companies') of dogs used to attack enemy armies in medieval battles?

In Dogs in warfare and The Dogs of War, a number of examples are given where dogs were used in battle in ancient times. Polyaenus, in ‘Stratagems’, also gives a clear example (late 7th century BC): ...
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3answers
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Why did European writers and artists continue to depict the Moors as being black skinned, even though they were mostly Berbers and Arabs

The Moors were foot soldiers of the Ummayad dynasties of Syria who crossed the straits of Gibraltar into the Iberian peninsula. Later in that period, two new dynasties emerged: the Almoravids and the ...
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3answers
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What did the people of the Middle Ages call their period?

It's clear that Middle Ages is a term from the Renaissance. My question is: What names did scholars use during the Middle Ages for their own period? Well, of course Middle Ages is a single name for ...
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3answers
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Was rape common in Europe during the Middle Ages?

I recently read an article (in Norwegian) claiming that rape was much less common in the Middle Ages than what is commonly believed and, more specifically, that it was much less common than what is ...
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2answers
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Why was fellatio considered so horrible during the XIX century in Europe?

The mentioned sexual practice was extremely frowned upon during that period, basically only prostitutes were to do them and even in this case, only with huge amounts of received money, that, in the ...
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3answers
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What does Russia want in Chechnya?

I have heard that Russia has been fighting with the Chechens on and off for about 300 years, occasionally losing control and reconquering. What exactly does Russia have to gain by retaining control of ...
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1answer
234 views

What have been the major milestones in the creation of state literacy policies?

There have been times as literacy was not obligatory. So, many people were not able to read/write in their mother tongue, but it was just normal. Today, most people are literate, and this is a result ...
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2answers
354 views

Which EU countries insisted on unanimous voting for trade deals?

Question prompted by this tweet by Jo Maugham in reaction to a HuffPost article: Humiliating, really, but if we leave the EU we'll have to brown-nose every single one of the Member States: ...
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What were the most popular destinations for British and American tourists on the Continent in the period 1880-1900?

How common was English and American travel to the Continent of Europe between 1880-1900? By businessmen, families, debutantes, honeymooners, politicians etc.
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1answer
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How were the borders of small European principalities maintained or secured?

With shifting boundaries, enclaves, exclaves, and alliances, how were the territorial extents of small principalities or duchies maintained, for example in the Holy Roman Empire or German ...
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4answers
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If the heir to a Kingdom is called Crown Prince, what is the heir to a Duchy called?

Just like the title said. What a heir to a hereditary Duchy is called? (as opposed to someone appointed by a King). I mean a Duchy where the Duke inherited his title to his son/daughter. Since the ...
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2answers
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Why don't Americans claim English ancestry? [closed]

Through a lot of American Movies and TV shows, and also my personal experiences of interacting with people in America, I know that most White Americans are informed of their European ancestry, and are ...
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1answer
2k views

Did the Hanseatic league have any involvement with Jews?

Did the Hanseatic League have any policy toward or involvement with Jews?
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Why China was able to unify and not Europe?

If you look at a map of China through the ages, you will usually find (from about the Han up) a huge mass representing China. On the other hand, you look at a map of Europe, and you'll usually see a ...
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2answers
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Why didn't Europeans before Gutenberg print with woodblocks?

Before the invention of the printing press and movable type (and some related innovations) by Johannes Gutenberg, books in Europe were generally only reproduced if someone copied them by hand. In ...

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