Gaurav
  • Member for 10 years, 3 months
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Why, in ancient battles, did being encircled mean defeat?
110 votes

While the total encirclement might be the most impressive thing about Cannae, remember that it's just a special case of a pincer movement where the pincer goes all the way around the enemy. A pincer ...

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Are there historical examples of audiences drawn to a work that was "so bad it's good"?
Accepted answer
90 votes

I’ll throw in a vote for Robert “Romeo” Coates, a theatre actor in Britain in the early 1800s. According to Wikipedia (emphasis mine): Despite this ridicule, Coates went on to tour the British ...

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What was life expectancy in early medieval Britain?
30 votes

According to Wikipedia, it was 30 years at birth. However, the reason for such mortality age is due to infant mortality. If you managed to survive until the age of 21, you could expect to live until ...

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Why was Caesar at the Rubicon?
Accepted answer
24 votes

The Rubicon river marked the boundary between the province of Cisalpine Gaul and Italy proper. Caesar, as a proconsul, held imperium (the right to command) within the provinces, but only a consul or ...

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Who should be the king/queen of England?
21 votes

If you accept that the Parliament of the United Kingdom currently has "sovereign and uncontrollable authority in making, confirming, enlarging, restraining, abrogating, repealing, reviving, and ...

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How did Edward Misselden become a deputy-governor of a merchant company at 15?
14 votes

According to the Wikisource document that article is based on, Wikipedia accidentally left out an "fl." in the age span (i.e. it ought to be "MISSELDEN, EDWARD (fl. 1608-1654)"). "fl." (Latin Floruit) ...

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How were Roman Legions disarmed/disbanded before entering Italia?
11 votes

Legions were supposed to disarm (edit: disband) themselves before coming back to Rome, in order to discourage any coups. As far as I know, legions weren't required to disarm or disband when returning ...

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Do any Byzantine maps survive?
7 votes

I'm sure there are better examples, but I'm particularly fond of the only pre-1453 map of Constantinople, which dates from 1422 (see below). Wikipedia has a list of old manuscript maps, which appear ...

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Who ruled India when the Abbasid ruler Harun al-Rashid was the Caliph of Baghdad?
Accepted answer
3 votes

Harun Al-Rashid was the Caliph of Baghdad from 786 to 809 (according to Wikipedia). According to this map of the Eastern Hemisphere in the year 800, the Indian subcontinent was divided between the ...

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Divine Right of Kings: Why?
2 votes

So I'm wondering: did people perhaps believe in the divine right of kings partly because anyone who wasn't particularly adept at managing the different wants and desires of his subjects tended to get ...

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Did medieval commanders exchange words before battle?
1 votes

It just doesn't seem plausible to my ignorant brain just to see an enemy army and shout "ATTAAACK!" without first saying something to the enemy commander, especially in a situation where it was the ...

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What's the relationship between Solomon's Temple and Christians?
1 votes

The idea that the Third Temple is necessary for the return of Christ appears to be related to Dispensationalism, which Wikipedia describes as a "Christian evangelical, futurist, Biblical ...

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