Charlemagne (742-814), (Image: Everett Historical/Shutterstock)
European History

The Reign of Charlemagne: Living in Charlemagne’s Kingdom

December 1, 2017

Charlemagne, Carolus Magnus, Charles the Great, was the greatest member of the Carolingian family, which arose in the early 7th century in the northeastern region of the Frankish world. He reigned over the Franks from 768 to 814. His reign marks a turning point in European history. […]

Pope Clement VII and Emperor Charles V on horseback under a canopy, by Jacopo Ligozzi, c. 1580
European History

Monarchs and Kings: Establishing 16th-Century Dynasties of Europe

December 1, 2017

As Europe approached 1500, a generation of stronger monarchs arose. Their goal was to suppress baronial rebellions and subordinate the church and aristocracy. They wanted to make themselves more secure and, ultimately, absolute. They would establish the modern conception of the nation-state with unitary loyalty owed to that state. […]

Ancient History

Intrigue, Insanity, and the Reign of Commodus

December 1, 2017

Marcus Aurelius departed sharply from the adoptive principle of succession, seeding the advancement of his son Commodus despite his extreme youth. A Decision that would prove to be disastrous. […]

Image of Tower of London
European History

The History of London: A Guided Tour Through the Developing City

December 1, 2017

At the beginning of the Tudor period, London was already by far the most important city in the realm. By the end of the Stuarts it would be 10 times as large, the center of a worldwide empire, and arguably the source of the most vibrant culture in Europe. […]

Painting of a Scullery Maid
British History

The Life of Domestic Servants in Victorian England

December 1, 2017

As standards of social decorum for the upper classes increased in the later Victorian period, the need for servants increased as well.

A Difficult Life

The British census of 1891 found that 1.3 million girls and women worked as domestic servants. They were usually recruited between the ages of 10 and 13, after they had been through some elementary schooling. Many employers hoped for the servants they hired to have at least some elementary literacy and numeracy. […]

Caesar Crossing the Rubicon (Image: By Ellis, Edward Sylvester/Public domain)
Ancient History

Caesar’s Road to the Rubicon—Rome Goes to War

December 1, 2017

With three large egos involved, it was inevitable that tensions within the triumvirate of Caesar, Pompey, and Crassus would rise. Yet how did the situation deteriorate so drastically that, when Caesar crossed a small river, known as the Rubicon, on January 10, 49 B.C., it was akin to a declaration of war on Rome? […]

European History

Otto von Bismarck—Germany’s Iron Chancellor

December 1, 2017

Otto von Bismarck (1815–1898), the “Iron Chancellor,” unified Germany in three wars and came to embody everything brutal and ruthless about Prussian culture. The real Bismarck had a different character—a hypochondriac, a brilliant and well-read man, a convert to an extreme form of Protestant mysticism, and one of the few Prussians who never served in the king’s army. […]

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