Category Archives: History

100 Years of British Prime Ministers

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Below Liverpool’s streets lies a 200-year-old tunnel network that confounds the experts

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Jack Horner

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Thanks to Phil Krause for suggesting this post John R. “Jack” Horner (born June 15, 1946) is a non-degree holding American paleontologist who discovered and named Maiasaura, providing the first clear evidence that some dinosaurs cared for their young. He … Continue reading

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‘England’s darling’ and Scotland’s saint

Everyone knows what happened 950 years ago this month, don’t they? William the Conqueror killed Harold and became King of England. Not quite. Harold and the flower of his army died at Hastings on 14 October 1066. But the magnates … Continue reading

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A TRAGIC ANNIVERSARY

Deskarati is always alert to anniversaries, and I want to share some thoughts on an event that I wish had never happened. On the 21 Oct 1966, during a period of wet weather, a colliery waste heap of black mud … Continue reading

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The Descent of Kukulkán

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El Castillo in Chichen Itza served as a temple to Kukulkan. During the spring and fall equinoxes the shadow cast by the angle of the sun and edges of the nine steps of the pyramid combined with the northern stairway and … Continue reading

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Guide to the Châtelperronian

The Châtelperronian period refers to one of five stone tool industries identified within the Upper Paleolithic period of Europe (ca 45,000-20,000 years ago). Once thought the earliest of the five industries, the Châtelperronian is today recognized as roughly coeval with … Continue reading

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DNA confirms cause of 1665 London’s Great Plague

DNA testing has for the first time confirmed the identity of the bacteria behind London’s Great Plague. The plague of 1665-1666 was the last major outbreak of bubonic plague in Britain, killing nearly a quarter of London’s population.It’s taken a … Continue reading

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Stunning drone footage of Uluru

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The first visitors to America’s National Parks, more than a century ago

1887 Tourists pose on Glacier Point above the Yosemite Valley. IMAGE: LIBRARY OF CONGRESS Though it was inhabited by Native Americans for thousands of years, the area of the Wyoming and Montana territories known as Yellowstone was not mapped in detail until … Continue reading

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Sex in Ancient Rome

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The History of Urbanization, 3700 BC – 2000 AD

Thanks to Phil Krause for suggesting this post.

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This document proves how much ear Van Gogh really cut off

A Vincent Van Gogh scholar has found a document explaining exactly how much of his ear the artist cut off back in 1888. Not only does the newlyV found diagram end a longstanding debate over the extent of van Gogh’s … Continue reading

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An ancient cemetery could change how we view the Philistines of the Bible

Call someone a “philistine” and you’re suggesting they’re dumb, or uncultured, or both – but is this view of the Philistines of the Bible actually justified? Thanks to the discovery of an ancient cemetery in Ashkelon in Israel, archaeologists are … Continue reading

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Charles Dickens and the Staplehurst rail disaster

When his train derailed while crossing a bridge, the celebrated novelist confronted death, despair and destruction to save others – and his work. Shortly after 3pm on 9 June 1865, the daily train from Folkestone, Kent, to London chugged past … Continue reading

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Text on Antikythera Mechanism Deciphered

A research project that deciphered text found on pieces of the mysterious Antikythera mechanism has provided a wealth of new insights on the ancient device. Dubbed the ‘world’s first computer,’ the complex system of gears was discovered in 1901 and painstakingly … Continue reading

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Scientists finally know what stopped Mongol hordes from conquering Europe

In 1206, Genghis Khan, a fierce tribal chieftain from northern Mongolia, began to take over the world. The khan’s ruthless tactics and loyal horde swept across Asia. One territory after another fell under the overwhelming force of the Mongol Empire, which … Continue reading

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Rube Goldberg

Thanks to Phil Krause for suggesting this post Reuben Garrett Lucius “Rube” Goldberg ( San Francisco July 4, 1883 – Hawthorne New York December 7, 1970) was an American cartoonist, sculptor, author, engineer, and inventor. He is best known for … Continue reading

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Scientists have just solved an ancient Peruvian mystery from space

Archaeologists have used high-resolution satellite snapshots to finally piece together a mystery surrounding the ancient people of Peru’s famous Nasca region. The mystery centres around a series of carefully built, spiralling holes called puquios, burrowed into the ground in the Nasca … Continue reading

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Dead Clade Walking

Dead clade walking also known as “survival without recovery” refers to a clade (group) of organisms which survived a mass extinction but never recovered in numbers, becoming extinct a few million years after the mass extinction or failed to recover in … Continue reading

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