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10
votes
2answers
521 views

Why is the Ping Yuen river in Hong Kong called River Ganges?

Why is the Ping Yuen river in Hong Kong called River Ganges? From the wikipedia: Ping Yuen River (also known as River Ganges) (平原河) is a river in northern New Territories, Hong Kong. Its source ...
4
votes
1answer
159 views

In Golf history, why is Musselburgh considered the first course, when St. Andrews was where golf was first played?

As the title states, Musselburgh Links is widely considered to be the first golf course, but it's also widely acknowledged that the game was invented at St. Andrews. This disparity doesn't quite make ...
5
votes
1answer
234 views

President proposes bills: provenance

The President of the United States sends proposed bills to members of Congress, that they may introduce the bills on his behalf. There's no provision for this in the Constitution (AFAICT). What was ...
13
votes
1answer
471 views

Castaways rescued by a message in a bottle?

Has there ever been a time when people were rescued by sending out a message in a bottle to drift across the sea? The "bottle" doesn't have to be an actual bottle. It could be a box, a cask, a ...
5
votes
1answer
222 views

Why did non prosecuted craftsmen go to the new world in the Roanoke era?

I've just been reading The Rise & Fall Of The British Empire by Lawrence James. In this book, James said that craftsmen, who were not prosecuted for their religion, went to the New World because ...
6
votes
2answers
887 views

At what point did mapmaking begin to accurately reflect what we now know about the earth?

Looking at maps through the ages, it is apparent that maps have become closer and closer to representing the locations and shapes of the Earth's features with increasing accuracy over the centuries. ...
7
votes
1answer
359 views

First recorded use of a traditional tombstone?

The question is rather straight-forward. I consider a "traditional" tombstone as some sort of monument having an inscribed name and date of birth/death or age.
15
votes
4answers
1k views

Where and how did the concept of “incorporation” originate?

Wikipedia states that "The alleged oldest commercial corporation in the world, the Stora Kopparberg mining community in Falun, Sweden, obtained a charter from King Magnus Eriksson in 1347". Is this ...
2
votes
1answer
588 views

Mountain flags from Batman Begins

This question may come up as a bit strange, but rest assured, it is about culture and symbolism. During the first few minutes of Batman Begins (at 06:25), there is a scene of Bruce Wayne wandering to ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

Why was the Irish War of Independence in 1918 successful when other revolts failed?

In a nutshell, what events, occurrences, or mishaps took place that allowed the Irish to win the war of Independence over what could arguably be the most powerful nation of the time, when they were ...
2
votes
4answers
453 views

Why are the police never responsible for guarding the Head of the State?

Why does the military provide the Head of State's honor guard? Why is the Head of State always accompanied by military personnel? Why don't the police escort the Head of State?
2
votes
1answer
143 views

Reception of Acemoglu-Robinson 'extractive institutions' thesis?

Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson believe that a great deal about the economic, social, and political life of a country can be explained by the quality of political institutions, especially the degree ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

How effective have Shariah-based Islamic Laws been at keeping the crime rate low in modern Saudi Arabia?

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is one of the strongest proponent of Shariah-based Islamic Laws. Did it have any effect on the crime statistics of the country? How effective have the criminal laws in ...
11
votes
1answer
456 views

Were mattress labels inspired by public outcry?

If you're an American consumer, you likely know the "mattress tag", labels attached to mattresses, pillows, stuffed animals, and pet beds, which often begin "This tag may not be removed under penalty ...
3
votes
2answers
355 views

Did Leon Trotsky get stopped by authorities in Halifax?

In Antony C. Sutton's book Wall Street and the Bolshevik Revolution he argues that Leon Trotsky was given $10,000 in New York. http://reformed-theology.org/html/books/bolshevik_revolution/chapter_02....
14
votes
1answer
720 views

Who first combined the lateen and square sails that led to the carrack?

In the middle ages the square sail was used in the Atlantic cogs, whereas in the Mediterranean the lateen sail was used due to its more flexible use. The combination of both sails into one ship ...
4
votes
0answers
580 views

What is the history of the “root” user in Unix computing? [closed]

It might be more relevant to the audiences of StackOverflow, ServerFault, or Programmers, but none of their FAQs covered this type of question. What is the origin of the "root" user in Unix-like ...
3
votes
1answer
217 views

What factors enabled the New York Journal to survive the yellow journalism wars?

The height of yellow journalism was a battle waged between the Joseph Pulitzer owned New York World, and the William Hearst owned New York Journal. However, even though these two papers boasted large ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the history of the legality of polygamy in Arab states?

In what Arab states having multiple wives legal and where it is not? How this changed over time and what countries were pioneers in the reforms?
10
votes
2answers
1k views

What was the impetus for some African nations to participate in the slave trade?

I know that some African nations participated in the slave trade by providing captured enemies as slaves to Europeans, but what are some of the reasons they did? Was it simply a new economic ...
2
votes
1answer
548 views

Was Tajmahal Tejo Mahal?

History says that the Taj Mahal was built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his third wife, Mumtaz Mahal. However, I've also read many stories claiming that it was a Lord Shiva temple earlier. ...
6
votes
1answer
6k views

When and why did Gujarat and Maharashtra separate?

Post-independence, when did these two states actually separate and what was the reason?
12
votes
1answer
1k views

What weapons were manufactured in India by the British forces which were used during world wars?

Recently I came across references to a weapon called the Bangalore Torpedo, which was used in the world wars. These weapons were made in India by the British Indian Army. I also happened to see ...
6
votes
1answer
450 views

Where is the location shown in this picture on a modern day map?

This image from this site is named Traffic Jam at the New York Entrance of the Holland Tunnel. New York City, 1920s As I understand, this is at Manhattan end of Holland Tunnel. I've tried, without ...
10
votes
2answers
557 views

Has anyone tried to map the Tribal Hidage

The Tribal Hidage set out the number of households living in different kingdoms and sub-kingdoms of Anglo-Saxon England. Has any work been done to map this data, in particular comparing it to the ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

What was the first supranational organization?

The European Union is the only organization at the moment that exhibits a high level of integration amongst its member nation states, but is it the world's first supranational type organization? Are ...
2
votes
4answers
210 views

Is there any history of a government/ruling party refusing to accept a Supreme Court order?

The Pakistan People's Party (PPP) said they accept the decision. What does it mean? Do they have any other choice? How? Please explain. Speaker of the parliament refuses to disqualify PM. Earlier, ...
13
votes
1answer
639 views

Who were the target audiences of this propaganda lithograph?

What was the main purpose of the image below, who was the audience (except Japanese people themselves)? It is a Japanese lithograph depicting the capture of Blagoveshchensk, Siberia, by the Imperial ...
5
votes
1answer
329 views

Did anyone find gold in California before 1848?

Is there any documentation or evidence of anyone finding gold in California before the discovery at Sutter's Mill in 1848?
14
votes
1answer
2k views

Comparison of Ancient Greecian and Egyptian schools and methods of studying to modern day

I've been watching some documentary that stated that our modern schools are used to make people submit to authority and think in a linear way. Just to make us good workers. And I wonder - What was ...
10
votes
2answers
4k views

What did ex-Gladiators do after being freed?

What did ex-Gladiators do after being freed? Did they stay near to what they knew or chose completely unrelated professions and prospered?
9
votes
4answers
673 views

Why and when did agriculture lose its prestige?

I do not know whether running a farm has ever been considered the most prestigious kind of work, but it is certainly nowhere near as prestigious as for example being a doctor, at least in my part of ...
6
votes
1answer
806 views

How was food produced in Europe/Germany prior to the industrial revolution?

I'd appreciate any pointer to books or other medias that cover the production of food prior to the industrial revolution (with the regional focus being in Europe or even more narrowly in Germany/...
5
votes
1answer
887 views

What was the reason why Americas didn't take to buckwheat as a crop?

Buckwheat is a very useful crop, resulting in healthful food. It was (and is) extremely popular is Eurasia (especially Russia and China). However, despite the fact that - as per Wiki - it was one of ...
6
votes
1answer
238 views

How did the Mayans get cacao?

Did the Mayans have plantations of cacao trees, or did they simply gather the fruit from cacao trees in the wild?
6
votes
1answer
218 views

When was the last time period where one could travel by steam powered locomotive across the United States today?

I'm not sure that it is possible to travel the United States from coast to coast by one single steam powered train today, or that there are enough connected routes that a steam locomotive could run on....
9
votes
1answer
1k views

What was the British version of enigma machine

At the time the Germans were using the enigma machine what were the British using to encrypt their messages and was it ever broken?
9
votes
1answer
608 views

What sorts of games of chance/skill and other events would a Middle-ages/renaissance festival have?

I am a DM/GM for a role playing game, and I want to plan a large festival for the game. I want to have it as authentic as possible, but don't know where to start. From the various fiction sources I'...
4
votes
1answer
151 views

Fanons 'Concerning Violence' makes the point that Nazism was the culminating point of the project of European Colonialism, how true is that? [closed]

He writes 'Not long ago Nazism transformed the whole of Europe into a veritable colony', meaning that the techniques pioneered in the colonies of Europe were turned upon Europe itself, culminating in ...
13
votes
2answers
813 views

What led Extremadurans to take a leading role in the conquest of Spain's territories in the Americas?

According to Wikipedia, other sources, and politically-incorrect stereotypes the majority of the famous conquistadors were from the present-day Spanish autonomous community of Extremadura: Hernán ...
5
votes
3answers
406 views

What was the American policy on colonisation and why?

What was the official policy of the USA on colonisation? How well did America follow it officially and non-officially? What were the reasons behind it?
8
votes
1answer
285 views

Did the Mayans view the gods as antagonistic to humanity?

How did the precolonial Maya view their gods' relationship to mankind, specifically: were they considered benevolent, neutral, or antagonistic? I've seen a number of hints that they may have ...
-3
votes
2answers
173 views

What are the origins of the “totalitarian genes” theory?

What are the origins of the infamous "totalitarian genes" theory that alleged that Russians, Serbs, Belorussians had genes favoring totalitarianism and autharitarian government, so to protect ...
16
votes
3answers
1k views

Who was the first head of government to support same-sex marriage?

Earlier today, Barack Obama declared his support for gay marriage. He told ABC News: "...for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able ...
7
votes
2answers
299 views

Did Demosthenes complain about inflation of prices in philippics?

Did Demosthenes complain about inflation of prices in his philippics caused by Philip II of Macedon's extensive gold mining? I have heard it somewhere but I can not find any refference.
7
votes
2answers
950 views

What is the origination of the Forlorn Hope?

Going back to a comment I had made in the question on What were the types of sieges something I had seen often referred to in the Bernard Cornwell Sharpe series was the Forlorn Hope. Basically these ...
12
votes
4answers
4k views

Why was Africa never really colonized? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why was Africa colonized last of the continents in the Age of Discovery? When the British colonized the Americas and Australia, they made sure to move normal civilians in and ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Animal “blood lust”

I remember reading in some older books about ancient combat that animals would sometimes get "into the fight" so to speak. For lack of a better term, this was evidenced by horses actually attacking (...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

What Were the Types of Sieges?

As I understand it, there were two types of sieges. One was where the attacking army would "camp," surrounding the city, and let the defenders run out of food. An example was Ulysses S. Grant's siege ...
10
votes
1answer
414 views

How did Magnus IV of Sweden come of age at 15?

According to the Wikipedia article Magnus IV of Sweden Magnus was declared to have come of age at 15 in 1331. This caused resistance in Norway, where a statute from 1302 made clear that kings came ...

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