49

No. At least, not to any practical intent or purpose. Japanese in Britain Significant numbers of Japanese were actually sold into slavery overseas during the 16th century, mostly through Portuguese merchants. Aside from chattel slavery, Portuguese sailors also bought young Japanese women as concubines, and it would not have been unthinkable if one ...


39

Currency restrictions existed between 1939 and 1979. The main goal of these restrictions after 1945 was to insure that enough foreign exchange was available to finance needed imports from non-sterling areas. This meant that sterling currency that could be exchanged to foreign currency was greatly limited. Starting 1945, this was £100 per year. Between 1952 ...


38

Yes, George I was indeed able to speak English. Not particularly well, mind you, but also not nearly as incapably as popular history portrays. In fact, he even opened his first Parliament in English: George is reported, when seated on the throne, to have uttered the words following; but, notwithstanding all the drilling to which he submitted, it must have ...


35

When in doubt about an English word - check the OED. Here is its etymology and usage history for the first sense of pound: ... This pound consisted originally of 12 ounces, corresponding more or less to that of Troy weight, q.v., which contains 5760 grains = 373.26 grams. This is still used by goldsmiths and jewellers in stating the weight of gold, silver, ...


31

No, firing trials of pre-WW1 British Dreadnoughts didn't actually involve firing at them. The HMS Hero trial mentioned in the Wikipedia article was part of a series of live firing trials carried out by the Royal Navy at the beginning of the 20th century. The target vessels were unmanned, and included: HMS Belleisle (launched 1876) HMS Hero (launched 1885) ...


30

To answer this question, you first have to answer another complex question: Who are the English? This question turns out to be quite complex indeed because to this day scholars are unsure whether to subscribe to an invasionist/migrationist view or a diffusionist view in regards to the Britons, the Celtic people of Great Britain (excluding Scotland) which ...


30

This is a famous if apocryphal letter, traditionally attributed to Wellington during the Peninsular War, though I wouldn't be surprised if a variant floating around transposed it to America a generation earlier. It is addressed to the War Office not to the King directly (which would in any case have been very anachronistic for the period) but otherwise seems ...


29

However, in the case of the pound, it is not clear what it originally was equivalent to. I think you're going to find that there is no known meaningful answer to this question, just a deep rabbit hole going back to the origins of civilization and written history, and quite possibly beyond. The best we can say is that the various historical weight/mass ...


28

The painting shows Robert Walpole in his full regalia as First Earl of Orford. The "crown" is not, in fact technically a crown, but rather a coronet, which forms part of that regalia. The Wikipedia article includes a series of images depicting the coronets for various British coronet rankings. I have reproduced the image of an Earl's coronet ...


24

England lies in the warmest, richest, and most fertile parts of the British Isles. These are modern population figures, but they are indicative of past relative strengths: England, 55 million; Ireland (counting northern Ireland), 6 million; Scotland, 5 million, Wales, 3 million. Frankly, I was surprised at the disparity between England, and all others (14 ...


18

Short and Simple answer (actually, it's not so simple...) The granting of the title 'Prince of Wales' by Edward I to his son (the future Edward II) was a demonstration of his authority over Wales and a political statement to that effect. One could also argue that the king was emphasizing the importance of Wales by granting it to his heir, his own flesh and ...


18

The obvious reason for Scotland being "conquered" by England is that King James VI of Scotland was heir to the English throne, and upon the death of Elizabeth I of England (and Ireland) found himself ruling both kingdoms. The larger English population and stronger economy then led to the English language gradually pushing aside both Scottish Gaelic and ...


16

The shorthand answer is that the age of colonial empires was not a board game where each empire has a a strategy, and there's a way of scoring a winner. Empires -- like everything human -- were complicated with multiple (often conflicting) motivations and multiple (often conflicting) views on how international relations would evolve. Doubtless some colonies ...


16

From the 1928 OED: Grecian: .... 2. One learned in the Greek language; a Greek scholar. [Attestations omitted] b. A boy in the highest class of Christ's Hospital (the Blue-coat school). Blue-Coat: Formerly the dress of servants and the lower orders; hence of almoners and charity children. [Attestations omitted] .... (More fully, Blue-coat boy): A scholar ...


14

Scotland joining England and Wales: The Darien Disaster was an ill-fated attempt to build a roadway across Central America by the Scots. It was backed by most of the Scottish nobility, and its failure nearly bankrupted them. This in turn, nearly bankrupted the Scottish Treasury. This lead to the Union of the Parliaments between Scotland and England in 1707. ...


14

1: Could there have been young Japanese women in Great Britain in the mid-1600s? This seems extraordinarily unlikely. According to the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan 1600 William Adams, a seaman from Kent, becomes the first Briton to arrive in Japan. 1832 Three sailors from Aichi Prefecture—Otokichi, Kyukichi and Iwakichi—cross the Pacific Ocean from ...


13

The 208th (SP) Field Regiment, Royal Artillery is listed on the Order of Battle for the 59 AGRA (Army Group Royal Artillery) as of May 18, 1945. It's HQ staff departed Liverpool on 28 March, 1945, arriving in Bombay 20 April. The 208th SP does not appear to have been part of 59 AGRA during the latter's post-D-Day role in N.W. Europe. The 130 (Lowland) Field ...


12

The ambassador most likely left Poland for Romania by about noon on Sept. 17, 1939, within a few hours of the Soviet invasion that morning, having already left Warsaw for Kuty in preparation for just such action. From the House of Commons Hansard records for Sept. 20, 1939 - Columns 976-7 (my emphasis): War Situation 3.52 p.m. .... The Prime Minister (Mr....


11

By the time of the Napoleonic Wars, most of the European nations had overseas empires and trade missions. International commerce was reliant on sea transport (and even what was essentially 'internal' trade often went by sea) because there was no other efficient way of bringing trade goods from the colonies to the home nations. By this time, the European ...


11

On British coinage: The title Fidei Defensor abbreviated to F.D. (Defender of the Faith) occurs for the first time on the British coinage under George I. The earliest example is from the very beginning of his reign, in 1714. "1 Guinea - George I 1st portrait". Source: Numista The inscription appears frequently on coins from here on. For example, ...


10

It appears this war debt was partially voided. The Government of The United Kingdom will make no claim for replayment of the Ł 73 million sterling, in respect of amounts spent on war material, equipment, supplies, etc, for the Polish Armed Forces in the West. The Government of the United Kingdom will leave in abeyance at present the question ...


10

In one sense, it might be better to say that Marlborough "bypassed", rather than "defeated", the Lines of Ne Plus Ultra. The following quote is from the 2011 biography of Marlborough by Angus Konstam: The French had built a defensive line, named Ne Plus Ultra (No Farther). To Marlborough this was the perfect challenge. It ran from Arras to Cambrai and ...


10

On the events of the 16th of December 1773 in Boston Harbor, the Boston Tea Party Historical Society article British View vs. American View, states that the incident was Scarcely noted in the British press at first when the news reached London on the 20th of January 1774. Thus, the ‘average British person’ would probably not even have known about it when ...


10

Short answer It's hard to prove an absence of evidence, but there are good reasons why George I might not have considered changing his name: it was a common given name in George's family, and then there is the obvious link to St. George, patron saint of England. Further, there was no precedence (in England at least) at the time for a monarch changing name, ...


9

The motivating factors that led to the Highland Clearances are manifold and complex. The roots of the clearances lay mainly in the aftermath of the 1745 Jacobite rebellion in which the highland levies formed the backbone of Charles Edward Stuart's army. That rebellion ended with the slaughter of the Jacobite army on Culloden moor. The clearances have ...


9

If you want that level of detail then you'll need to work your way through the British Admiralty archives. Ship's muster books will give you the crew names and should show if any were missing once the ship left the islands. The ship's log books (both Captain's and Master's) should give you the arrival and departure dates and may also give some idea of the ...


8

You are probably referring to the Royal Cornwall Militia. This unit was deployed to Devon in March 1797, as part of the coastal defence against an anticipated French invasion. In all likelihood, this would be why Francis Green was in the parish of Totnes the next year. 6th March: The Cornish Militia came into Dover to be quartered in Town during the ...


8

The statistical illustration published by the BBC of Hatton's data is misleading, The Economist is different: The original paper is Timothy J. Hatton: "How have Europeans grown so tall?", Oxford Economic Papers, Volume 66, Issue 2, 1 April 2014, Pages 349–372. Increases in human stature are a key indicator of improvements in the average health ...


8

To expand on my comment, the first thing to note is that George III was a constitutional monarch. He reigned but he did not rule. Parliament was the supreme authority in Great Britain. 'Corruption of blood' was an effect of 'attainder' under the common law in England and Wales. This could be the result of conviction in court (for high-treason, for ...


8

The pound is a non-metric unit, and a non-metric unit is usually visual and simple. “The gold ones are Galleons. Seventeen silver Sickles to a Galleon and twenty-nine Knuts to a Sickle, it's easy enough.” Here's a nice visualization of various English units of mass, from wikipedia: Note well: There are multiple conflicting definitions of what constitutes a ...


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