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Questions tagged [sources]

For questions regarding primary and secondary evidence that allows us to draw conclusions about historical happenings. Use this tag for requests for analysis of specific sources. More general questions on how historians study sources should be tagged with historiography.

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116 views

What evidence do we have to claim the Ancient Romans kept African grey parrots as pets?

The book Birds: Myth, Lore and Legend by Rachel Warren Chadd and Marianne Taylor states: [...] The Ancient Romans, who kept both Rose-ringed Parakeets and African Greys (Psittacus erithacus), right,...
8
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2answers
991 views

What is the source for this Leonardo Da Vinci quote?

"Art is the queen of all sciences communicating knowledge to all the generations of the world."  Where exactly does this Leonardo Da Vinci quote come from? Was it part of a larger paragraph - if so ...
6
votes
1answer
215 views

Did Napoleon III reserve a special set of aluminum cutlery for special guests?

Slate (2010): the minor emperor Napoleon III reserved a prized set of aluminum cutlery for special guests at banquets. (Less favored guests used gold knives and forks.) I see the above claim (or ...
10
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0answers
119 views

What did Zhang Zuolin say after his train blew up?

Zhang Zuolin was an early 20th century Chinese warlord of Manchuria. He was fatally wounded by the Japanese Army, using a bomb laid beneath tracks where his armoured train travelled over. There is a ...
2
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1answer
82 views

Where are official images and metadata of cave paintings housed?

I have seen a few cave paintings at the British Museum and a couple other museums, but not very many and only of specific types. I also saw Lascaux (French International Center for Cave Art) which ...
4
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0answers
121 views

Primary sources for interrogation of US soldiers in 1943 Tunisia

Edwin Palmer Hoyt's Hitler's War contains this passage: In January General von Arnim's army in Tunisia had enjoyed considerable success in limited actions against the Americans. The Germans had ...
26
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3answers
3k views

Do we have any surviving texts by Romano-Celtic authors?

Do we have any surviving texts or references to texts with Romano-Celtic authors and how common were 'non-Greco-Italian' (I'm not sure of the best term for that) authors? Specifically within the Roman ...
8
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3answers
2k views

Did a German plane really land in Moscow in 1941 May?

I just read this small Wikipedia page about a 1941 Purge of the Red Army. There is something rather shocking: In May, a German Junkers Ju 52 landed in Moscow, undetected by the ADF beforehand, ...
2
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0answers
55 views

What is the source for the Baal Shem Tov's signature?

According to Chabadpedia, the following comprises the signature of Rabbi Yisrael ben Eliezer, the Baal Shem Tov: Is this actually the Baal Shem Tov's signature? Where was it copied from? The article ...
15
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1answer
854 views

What (primary) sources are there on the life of female slaves in Classical Greece, more specifically Athens?

Since there was often a difference in what jobs male and female slaves were respectively made to work in (and there even being one exclusive to women, being a wet nurse), I was wondering whether, for ...
5
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1answer
3k views

Source of the Napoleon “God/Devil/immortal” quote

I heard in a history lecture (I don't know who the lecturer was) the following quote about Napoleon: Some say he's God (an angel?), some say he's the Devil, but everyone agrees he isn't mortal. ...
2
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1answer
115 views

How do historians get their hands on diaries and letters of ordinary people?

In several books by different authors historians often refer to diaries. Often, these are diaries of ordinary people. There are also countless statements like Such and such German officer wrote this ...
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0answers
26 views

The histories of California by Alvarado and Vallejo

In the 1870s H.H. Bancroft employed bilingual scribes to visit elderly Californios and record their oral histories. Two of his best sources were Juan Bautista Alvarado and his uncle, just one year ...
3
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3answers
176 views

Can I get my hands on a translation of Ahmad ibn Fadlan's manuscript?

I have read a couple of fiction novels, based on the renowned manuscript. But is an English translation of the actual Arabic text available online?
5
votes
3answers
610 views

Did West Russia really have a rock shortage in WW2? And if so, what was the cause?

I have a previous question that led to this one. There is an article talking about German rail activities in Russia during WW2, and it also talks about the state of the Russian rail network to begin ...
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0answers
103 views

What strategies are there for analysing omissions in historical sources?

Individual historical texts record only a fraction of what actually happens, and critical readers may recognize incomplete explanations. Depending on what they know about the author and their ...
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1answer
202 views

Are there any contemporary references to the Battle of Badr outside of the Qur'an?

As the question reads, I'm trying to find sources for the Battle of Badr outside of the Qur'an from the same time period.
4
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1answer
500 views

What does the abbreviation “adhib.” mean in historiography or archival science?

What does the abbreviation adhib. mean in the context of historiography and archival science? Remarks. This question is not about the meaning in medicine. This is easy to look up. Of course, ...
-3
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1answer
202 views

How useful is an official WW1 painting for analysing the Battle of Mons?

Help me with this question please! I'm having an examination soon.
8
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1answer
163 views

What was the primary source Brugsch used to argue for Egyptian monotheism?

There is a theory held by some that Ancient Egypt had a degree of monotheism (A certain Emmanuel de Rougé even going as far as saying, in 1839, "The Egyptian religion is a pure monotheism, which ...
0
votes
1answer
139 views

1959 Supersonic Transport Aircraft Committee (STAC) report (on Concorde)

I am looking for the 1959 STAC report. This 1977 Atlantic article stated that the report was, at that time, still being withheld by the UK government, probably out of embarrassment. I think this UK ...
1
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2answers
146 views

Does there exist a comprehensive list of every ancient document and artifact ever recovered?

If I wanted to become an expert on Mesopotamia, for instance, and I wanted to read every text written in that region from the dawn of recorded history to the 5th century CE, could I find a complete ...
9
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1answer
240 views

How do historians deal with inconsistencies?

Suppose we have some large, long event whose description is made up of thousands of documents, artifacts, testimonies, and photographs. If some document is (or some are) found to be forged, if some ...
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2answers
32 views

Did Anza record exactly who came along on his expedition?

The first Anza Expedition of 1775 brought some of the first Spanish-speaking colonists into Alta California. At least one baby was born en route. Did Anza or anyone else in his party write down ...
1
vote
1answer
137 views

When was the first documented mention of mechanically generated electricity? [closed]

Electricity seems to have become known and adapted widespread in the early 19th century. With people such as Nikola Tesla and Thomas Alva Edison it eventually entered our daily lives as a source of ...
2
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1answer
276 views

Why was Abane Ramdane killed?

The Wikipedia entry about Abane Ramdane says: The National Liberation Front (FLN) had killed him because he was supposedly creating a cult of the individual rather than the collective ...
5
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1answer
206 views

Where did the names of these Tyrian kings come from?

Wikipedia gives a whole list of the kings of Tyre and basically cites as its source Josephus Against Apion, Book I, §18) in the name of Menander of Ephesus, a historian who wrote about Tyrian history (...
4
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3answers
283 views

Were the Pechenegs at some point Manicheans?

I've seen it hinted in some places the Pechenegs were at some point Manicheans, often contrasting against the Bogomils in the Balkans, Paulicians in Armenia and other Manicheans in Central Asia, ...
6
votes
1answer
257 views

Where can I get information used to make Soviet economic plans?

One kind of information used by Gosplan to create plans was a list of commodities and relationships between them, i.e. what things were required to produce other things. I managed to find higher ...
2
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0answers
193 views

Any sources on day to day governance in the ancient world? [closed]

EDIT: I've been asked to make this question simpler so here is my best attempt: I'm looking for sources, either primary, secondary, or even good pieces of historical fiction, that deal with the daily ...
4
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0answers
1k views

Was a copy of Bobadilla's report on Christopher Columbus really found in a Spanish archive in 2006?

As claimed in The Guardian A transcription of the document is apparently available on JSTOR here, the section "Pesquisa Del Comendador Francisco de Bobadilla". I cannot read Spanish and otherwise ...
6
votes
1answer
323 views

What evidence is there that Alfred paid the Danes to leave Wessex in 876?

The Danes struck at Wareham in 876. Alfred made peace there with Guthrum, and there was an exchange of hostages. However, the Danes broke the peace and during the night they killed the hostages and ...
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1answer
113 views

Historical airline schedules?

I am looking for historical airport schedules from the US and Canada from after WWII. For example, I would really like to see a flight schedule (or schedules) from New York from around 1948. Any ideas ...
7
votes
2answers
907 views

Did John Wesley pray because he had not been persecuted in three days?

I have read the following story many times: John Wesley was riding along a road one day when it dawned on him that three whole days had passed in which he had suffered no persecution. Not a ...
10
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2answers
2k views

Can a source be considered 'primary' if it is not written by an eyewitness and partly based on another source?

The example I have in mind is Luke's Gospel, but the question is not about that source in particular, I'm interested in the terms 'primary' and 'secondary' in the technical sense they would be used by ...
7
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2answers
516 views

Are there any written records of Norse mythology dated prior to Christianization?

As I understand it, most of what we know about Norse mythology is based on texts written in sagas by Christians in the late Middle Ages. Do we have any contemporary accounts of Norse mythology from ...
5
votes
1answer
503 views

How is it known that Phidias used the golden ratio in the Parthenon?

I can see it is widely accepted he did, so there must be some source backing this up, since no work of his has survived (except for a vase in Olympia with the inscription "I belong to Phidias"). What ...
11
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1answer
5k views

Did Hongwu Emperor flay 5000 women, and why?

On Wikipedia, there is a snippet that reads: The Hongwu Emperor flayed many servants, officials and rebels.[5][6] In 1396 he ordered the flaying of 5000 women.[7] The problem is that the second ...
8
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1answer
501 views

Visit of Greek philosophers to Rome in 155 BCE

In 155 BCE a delegation of three Greek philosophers arrived in Rome on a political mission (to negotiate the settlement of war fines). During their stay they succeeded in raising Greek philosophy to ...
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0answers
44 views

Is there a way to determine where specific Quartermaster Depot companies were based in WWII?

My father-in-law was a master sergeant of a Quartermaster Corps Depot Company during the Battle of the Bulge. I would like to find out where his depot was located (and I'm assuming it moved from time ...
3
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5answers
4k views

Why were the 8th Route Army better at fighting the Japanese than the Nationalists were?

Numerous sources have noted the (Communist) 8th Route Army's effectiveness in its resistance against Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) occupation; British, American observers, even Japanese commanders have ...
16
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1answer
831 views

How common was banditry in 16th & 17th century Great Britain and Ireland?

I want to know about highwaymen and thieves and brigands who preyed on travellers. so, I am not interested in other organised criminal gangs such as smugglers or urban thieves.
5
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4answers
1k views

What are the oldest primary sources of recorded history in China?

There is for instance Sima Qian, according to Wikipedia the first Chinese historian, who wrote the Shiji (Records of the Grand Historian) in 109 BCE. But does this primary source still exist, or do ...
5
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2answers
718 views

Are there any extant original first-century manuscripts of any of Josephus' works?

It has been claimed that there are no surviving originals of any of Josephus' works. I have not found any help through Google, and so I wonder if anyone can give me any information about this, along ...
7
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1answer
499 views

What is the origin of these WW1 “official history” maps?

I'm looking for a source, preferably the original atlas or set of documents in facsimile, for the following WW1 maps (and their siblings): I've only found these fragments, reproduced on the Web and ...
4
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1answer
3k views

PANDA Source Analysis

In History at school we learnt the PANDA method to analyse sources, to test for bias and authenticity. Purpose - What is the purpose for which the source was created? Was it to convert people to a ...
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2answers
927 views

Are there Indian accounts of the Battle of the Hydaspes Rivers?

Are there Indian accounts of the Battle of the Hydaspes River? If so, what are they, who authored them, and how do they differ from the Greek & Roman accounts?
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2answers
517 views

The riddle of Marco's Millions

The question is asked in the context of theories about the use of 'millions' or 'milioni' in association with Marco Polo and the reason for the use of the word as the Italian title for his book, known ...
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1answer
1k views

Was the Dargah Shrine at Ajmer built over a Hindu temple?

This article points that the popular Ajmer Sufi Shrine (Dargah) of Khwaja Chisti in India was built on a demolished Hindu Temple (Varaha Temple). What are the historical sources for such a claim? The ...
3
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1answer
499 views

First-hand sources for medieval urban life in central Europe

I am a teacher and I would like to do an exercise with my students concerning the urban life in the Middle Ages. I am looking for original, first-hand sources who describe urban life from the 11th ...