Category: history

Intimate photos of Sharon Tate gives her husband Roman Polanski…

Intimate photos of Sharon Tate gives her husband Roman Polanski a haircut in 1968.

Who Lived In Egypt Before The Pharaohs?

The known, Dynastic Egypt began around 3,100 BCE. But the magnificent, complex civilization we still learn about in elementary school did not suddenly emerge, fully-formed. What came before? Archaeologists know that roughly between 9,300 BCE and 4,000 BCE, an enigmatic Neolithic people built a proto civilization in Egypt. But there has been little research on them, so a new excavation of three burial sites has the possibility of adding greatly to the understanding of how ancient Egypt became, well, ancient Egypt.

During the Neolithic, Egypt was much greener, allowing ancient herders to populate what is now the middle of a barren desert. During the Final Neolithic (4,600 – 4,000 BCE) they began to bury the dead in formal cemeteries. We know this from excavations at three burial sites which were not lone graves but large cemeteries housing over 100 burials each.

One cemetery appears to be for the elite. It had a low childhood mortality rate, tall stature, and relatively long lifespans for the Neolithic. Men averaged about 170 cm tall (5’7"), and women about 160 cm (5’3"). Most had lived beyond 40, and some even into their 50s. That’s not old today, but for the Neolithic, that’s nothing to scoff at. And most tellingly, those in this cemetery were buried with many artifacts including ornamental pottery, jewellery from stones and ostrich eggshells, sea shells far from the sea, and animal remains. Two other cemeteries appear to be for lower-status individuals. They had few artifacts, high child mortality, were physically shorter, and had shorter lifespans. The larger of the two cemeteries had a separate burial area for children under 3 years old, although most of the remains were infants and late-term fetuses. It is the earliest known infant cemetery.

These three very different burial sites suggest that by 4,600 BCE, Neolithic society had developed stratified social hierarchies. It also suggests that age 3 is when children became “people” and were included in adult cemeteries. Finally, there was evidence of respect for those previously buried, because when coming across old skeletons in reused graves, they often carefully repositioned their ancestors’ bones, sometimes even replacing teeth that had fallen out! The archaeological evidence suggests a sophisticated herding society, one slowly evolving towards what would become Dynastic Egypt.

This 1961 ad for a children’s front seat car belt shows just how…

This 1961 ad for a children’s front seat car belt shows just how far car safety has come over the years!

Beautiful photos document the European journey of a couple by…

Beautiful photos document the European journey of a couple by their Vespa in 1959.

24 gorgeous photos show fashion styles of Bianca Jagger in the…

24 gorgeous photos show fashion styles of Bianca Jagger in the 1970s.

Since being made in the 400s CE, this vase has…

Since being made in the 400s CE, this vase has had quite an eventful life. Read all about its adventures

There’s a Bishop of the Moon?

During a 1968 visit with the Pope, William D. Borders, bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Orlando, Florida, observed that arguably he was now bishop of the moon. According to the 1917 Code of Canon Law, which was in force at the time, any newly discovered territory fell under the jurisdiction of the diocese from which the discovering expedition had left.

And Bishop Borders’ diocese included Brevard County. Which is the home of Cape Canaveral, where the Apollo missions to the moon took off.

Bernard Montgomery (1887-1976) was a British F…

Bernard Montgomery (1887-1976) was a British Field Marshall during ww2. He commanded the British Eighth Army in North Africa and defeated Erwin Rommel at the 2nd Battle of El Alamein. He later went on to participate in the invasion of Italy, the Battle of Normandy, and the Battle of the Bulge. For a long time I pictured Monty as an old man so I was caught off guard when I found this picture when I wanted to find out more about him in ww1.

Not only did he look hot, but younger Monty has an interesting story. Having a rough childhood where him and his siblings were abused by the mother, Monty always found comfort in the military and went into the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. When ww1 broke out, he was shot through the lung at the First Battle of Ypres and his grave was dug thinking that he wouldn’t be able to recover. Eventually he did recover and Monty returned as a general staff officer in 1917. There is a picture of Winston Churchill at a military parade in Lille in 1918, and in the bottom left stands a stern looking Montgomery, not well known at that time but will make a large effect on history.

17 vintage photographs of Heinkel Kabine bubble cars in the…

17 vintage photographs of Heinkel Kabine bubble cars in the 1950s.

MARTIAL ARTS IN MEDIEVAL JAPAN: THERE were 18 …

MARTIAL ARTS IN MEDIEVAL JAPAN: 

THERE were 18 martial arts (bugei or bujutsu) in medieval Japan, and these included use of weapons, unarmed self-defence techniques, swimming, and equestrian skills. Initially designed to hone the skills of warriors for greater success on the battlefield, many of the arts were later practised by civilians as a method to foster discipline, agility, and mental alertness. Many of the arts remain popular today, notably judo, kendo, karate, and aikido.

Several of the martial arts which became popular in medieval Japan were introduced from China where, according to tradition, they had begun as a way for Buddhist monks to ensure they were fit enough to sit in meditation for hours on end and as a method to aid their concentration. Over time, these exercises began to incorporate skills with weapons and they spread across to Japan. Kendo, for example, which emphasised skill with a sword, was likely introduced there in the 7th century CE. Nevertheless, the Japanese added their own weapons, skills, and psychological emphasis to martial arts to both suit their own military needs and their philosophical approach. From the 10th century CE and throughout the medieval period (1185-1603 CE), warriors, especially the samurai, practised their skills at weaponry and horse riding in order to prepare themselves for the challenges of the all-too-frequent wars that plagued the country as rival warlords fought for dominance.

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