July 2011

Public toilets, heads of state and –teddy bears?

July 28, 2011

A few people have weighed in with answers to my question on a previous post outside the comments box.  Some of them were too good not to share.  In addition to vespesianos and London bobbies, here are some more eponymous tributes to heads of state, statesmen, and mere politicians: 1.  The Teddy bear, named after […]

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The First Common Market?

July 26, 2011

  My Own True Love and I leave next week for Belgium and my thoughts are turning toward Waterloo, Flanders Field, and the Hanseatic League.*  Especially the Hanseatic League. I’m fascinated by traveling merchants, from the Silk Road caravans that brought luxury goods from China and India to the Muslim peddlers who sold dry goods […]

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It’s a Date!

July 22, 2011

Several readers of this blog have complained that I forget to include dates in my blog posts.  It’s a fair cop. It’s not that I don’t know historical dates.  (Okay, sometimes I don’t know the exact date, but I know where to look it up.) I even agree that dates are valuable, taken in small […]

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Public Toilets and Heads of State

July 19, 2011

As those of you who are reading along know, I recently learned that public toilets are called vespasianos in Italy, after the Roman emperor Vespasian, who introduced the concept to the empire.  This led my brain to London bobbies, named after British Prime Minister Robert Peel, who founded the London police when he was Home […]

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A lagniappe

July 17, 2011

Dear Readers:  I’m guest-blogging today at Karen Elliot’s Blog:  Finding Your Way Through the Civil War Visit.  Say hi.  Sit a spell.

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Tough Broads of the Civil War

July 15, 2011

I’ve said it before:  If you hang out in Popular History Land, or even Book World these days, it’s impossible to ignore the American Civil War and its sesquicentennial. Civil War references are everywhere. The most recent bit of Civil War “stuff” to start my brain churning was a review of a new book by […]

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Slouching Toward Jerusalem

July 12, 2011

I’ve been fascinated by the Crusades for several years now.  Not surprising, I suppose, given my basic interest in the times and places where two cultures touch (or in the case of the Crusades, whack at) each other and change.   I’ve read accounts of what the Crusades looked like from the Muslim perspective. (Barbarian invaders […]

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Road Trip Through History: Daniel Boone Home and Boonesfield Village

July 8, 2011

Over the 4th of July weekend, My Own True Love and I headed toward southwest Missouri and the Toler family reunion. A family reunion is a worthy goal in itself.  Especially when it includes homemade ice cream and Grandma Toler’s Chocolate Cake.    But as far as we’re concerned, a road trip isn’t a road trip […]

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Word with a Past: Assassin

July 5, 2011

The original Assassins were members of a revolutionary Shiite splinter group founded in eleventh century Persia by Hassan Sabbah. Like many schismatic religious groups, the Assassins believed that Muslims, including mainstream Shiites, had taken a wrong turn.  Islam needed to go back to its foundations.  As far as other Muslims were concerned, Sabbah’s beliefs were […]

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