Forest fires, whether caused by lightening or a volcanic eruption, must initially have been a terrifying and calamitous event for early humans. However, what remained in its wake was sure to be a significant discovery. Among the devastation they found newly cooked food that was easier to find and collect, but also easier to eat: nuts were exposed, grains and roots were softened, and meat was tender.Read More
At the height of the Second Northern War of 1656-60, King Charles X Gustav was bogged down in Northern Europe against Sweden’s powerful Eastern neighbors: Germans, Poles, Russians and their allies. The campaign had been reduced to a guerilla war of attrition. It was slowly depleting the morale of his men and his leadership was in doubt. Then there was more bad news from the West. Seeing a chance to cast off the yoke of their powerful neighbor, the Danes took this opportunity to also declare open war on Sweden and join the alliance against Gustav.Read More
Amantine wanted to become a writer. Shortly after marrying, she moved to Paris to find a publisher, but she was told in no uncertain terms: “Madame, why don’t you make babies instead of literature.” Not one to be daunted, she co-authored the novel with her husband under a pseudonym. As it turned out, this actually worked out well…Read More
…Over time, the theory started to develop holes, huges ones, in the fossil record. Despite a renewed zeal to dig up fossils all around the world after Darwin’s book, there were huge periods of prehistoric time where no gradual evolutionary progression occurred. Faithful scientists who supported Darwin’s theory hypothesized that those fossils simply had not yet been discovered. Yet even this idea became more and more tenuous as so few fossils were discovered that supported the theory. Could Darwin’s theory have been inaccurate? Could these holes be evidence of God’s work?Read More
Eventually, to put an end to the drama, Fushimiya put the cup up for auction. As the auction proceeded, two bidders had a dispute over it and the cup was knocked off the auction table and shattered. The auction was cancelled, and Fushimiya took the broken pieces home. He carefully glued the cup back together, stored it in a safe place, and tried to forget about the whole experience.Read More
Erwin Rommel was not the inventor of the famous Blitzkrieg (lightening) style of warfare that was so successful in the conquest of much of Europe, but as commanding officer of tank and infantry divisions in both the Polish and French campaigns, he was a quick study. A good general learns not just from the past, but also adapts what is learned to the present situation.Read More
Khrushchev proposed to change course for Russia. He strongly criticized Stalin’s crimes, naming the names of well-known people who had been victims of the purges. This came as a surprise to many of the party members present – there was tension and consternation in the hall. At one point, a heckler in the audience yelled out: “You were one of Stalin's colleagues. Why didn't you stop him?” Khrushchev looked up and yelled back: “WHO SAID THAT?”Read More
Let me start by offering some Hollywood-style blood & guts arguments to make the case for studying history. Learning about Hannibal and Alexander is like a non-stop action movie. These two spent the majority of their lives fighting, warmongering, and viciously killing folks. Oh yes, there are healthy doses of human sacrifices, hacking & slashing on the battlefield, executions, and pretty much the most spine chilling acts to read about in their stories….