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15 09, 2017

The alphabet replaces cuneiform – West Asian writing

By |2019-09-04T08:13:14-07:00September 15th, 2017|West Asia|0 Comments

This inscription from Kandahar, in Afghanistan, has Greek writing at the top, translated into Aramaic at the bottom. The Mauryan Indian king Ashoka put it up about 258 BC. When the Assyrian Empire collapsed in the 600s BC, the short-lived Babylonian Empire also used cuneiform writing. But when the Persians took over West Asia in 539 BC [...]

14 09, 2017

Who were the Lydians? West Asian history

By |2019-09-05T05:39:36-07:00September 14th, 2017|West Asia|0 Comments

A Lydian gold coin King Gyges About 687 BC, according to the Greek historian Herodotus, King Gyges started the new country of Lydia (LID-ee-ah), in modern Turkey where the Hittites had ruled before the Dark Age. Who were the Hittites? When was Herodotus writing? Now that the Assyrian Empire had collapsed, and the Neo-Babylonians were not very strong, it was pretty [...]

4 09, 2017

Polybius and the rise of Rome – Roman history

By |2018-04-25T08:57:46-07:00September 4th, 2017|Literature, Romans|0 Comments

Snow in Athens (thanks BBC!) Polybius (po-LIB-ee-us) was a rich Greek man, who was born in the Greek city of Athens, about 200 BC. When the Romans conquered his city-state, they demanded some hostages from that city. The Romans took these hostages to Rome, and they said if the city-state tried to get free of Roman rule, or did [...]

7 08, 2017

History of the Jesuits – Catholicism

By |2019-10-14T20:22:51-07:00August 7th, 2017|Modern Europe, Religion|0 Comments

History of the Jesuits: Ignatius of Loyola, who started the Jesuits Ignatius of Loyola In the early 1500s AD, the Protestants were the new thing in Europe. Protestants were getting more and more popular. Who are Protestants? History of Christianity Modern European religion All our Modern Europe articles A few students at the University of Paris in 1534 [...]

6 08, 2017

European writing – books, poetry, Bibles

By |2018-04-11T18:19:12-07:00August 6th, 2017|History, Modern Europe|0 Comments

Reproduction of a press from Gutenberg's time The invention of the European printing press with moveable type in northern Europe in the late 1400s AD was no accident: publishers had set out to find a way to create a lot of books cheaply, because there was a new market for the books. More and more European families [...]

4 08, 2017

Roger Bacon – Medieval science

By |2018-04-24T08:21:21-07:00August 4th, 2017|Medieval, Science|0 Comments

Roger Bacon's diagram of a human eye Roger Bacon was born in England maybe about 1210 AD. It was late in the reign of King John. (That's the one in Robin Hood.) England was just beginning to get richer from raising and selling high quality wool cloth on the Silk Road. In addition, a warmer climate - the Medieval Warm period - was making [...]

3 08, 2017

Anna Comnena’s Alexiad – Byzantine literature

By |2019-01-22T11:03:06-07:00August 3rd, 2017|Literature, Medieval|0 Comments

Anna Comnena, author of the Alexiad Who was Anna Comnena? Anna Comnena was born a princess in 1083 AD. She was the oldest child of the Byzantine emperor Alexios. She was named for her grandmother, the powerful empress Anna. The Empress Anna ruled the Empire whenever Alexios was away fighting wars. The Empress Anna raised her [...]

29 07, 2017

What is pi? Simple geometry – Math, circles, circumference, diameter

By |2018-04-23T16:01:03-07:00July 29th, 2017|Math|8 Comments

What is pi? The geometry of a circle What is pi? Pi is a number that is just a little bigger than 3.14. It is the number you get if you divide the circumference of any circle by its diameter. It's the same for all circles. You can approximate pi for yourself by taking some circular things like the tops [...]

9 07, 2017

Greek alphabet – writing in ancient Greece

By |2019-07-15T23:33:23-07:00July 9th, 2017|Greeks, Literature|0 Comments

Before the Greek alphabet: Linear B writing from Bronze Age Greece Before the alphabet - Linear B The first writing in Greece got started in the Late Bronze Age, and it was a hieroglyphic kind of writing like Egyptian hieroglyphs or Mesopotamian cuneiform but using different signs. Egyptian hieroglyphs Mesopotamian cuneiform Greek Bronze [...]

1 07, 2017

Ancient Greek Architecture

By |2019-07-17T10:14:00-07:00July 1st, 2017|Architecture, Greeks|0 Comments

Greek architecture: a Bronze Age palace in Knossos, Crete The first buildings in Greece The earliest buildings people built in Greece, in the New Stone Age, are small houses or huts, and wooden walls around them for protection. Later there are bigger houses, and stone walls around the villages. Stone Age Greek architecture [...]