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Saturday, 30 June 2012

Aztec Daily Life

I wrote a short article about the daily life of the Aztecs. They were a very interesting civilisation despite the horrific practice of human sacrifice. www.localhistories.org/aztec 

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Tycho Brahe

I wrote a short biography of the great Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe. Although he lived before the invention of the telescope Tycho made accurate measurements of the movements of the planets and plotted the position of stars. His work was very useful to later astronomers like Kepler. www.localhistories.org/brahe  

Henry VIII

Happy birthday Henry VIII. He was born 28 June 1491. Henry VIII wasn't perfect but people often forget his positive achievements. He was the father of the British navy for a start. www.localhistories.org/Henryvii i 

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Kepler

I wrote a short biography of the great astronomer Johannes Kepler. He was the genius who realised that planets orbit in ellipses not in circles. (At the time it was a revolutionary idea). He also discovered 3 laws of planetary motion. www.localhistories.org/kepler  

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Bannockburn

On 24 June 1314 the Scots won a decisive victory at the battle of Bannockburn. I am surprised the Scots don't have a holiday to celebrate, a Bannockburn Day. It was one of their greatest victories and it assured Scottish independence.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Biscuits

Several new biscuits were invented in the 19th century including the Garibaldi (1861), the Cream cracker (1885) and the Digestive (1892). In the 20th century new biscuits were introduced. Custard creams were invented in 1908 and Bourbons were invented in 1910. HobNobs followed in 1986. www.localhistories.org/biscuits  

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Brighton

I wrote about the city of Brighton. It began as a Saxon village and it was turned into a small market town in the early 14th century. Brighton began to boom in the late 18th century when rich people believed that bathing in sea water was good for your health. Today Brighton is still one of Britain's greatest seaside resorts. www.localhistories.org/brighton  

Monday, 18 June 2012

Anglo Saxon Food


Anglo Saxon women ground grain, baked bread and brewed beer. Another Saxon drink was mead, made from fermented honey. (Honey was very important to the Saxons as there was no sugar for sweetening food. Bees were kept in every village). Upper class Anglo Saxons sometimes drank wine. The women cooked in iron cauldrons over open fires or in pottery vessels. They also made butter and cheese. Saxons ate from wooden bowls. There were no forks only knives and wooden spoons. Cups were made from cow horn.

The Anglo Saxons were fond of meat and fish. However meat was a luxury and only the rich could eat it frequently. The ordinary people usually ate a dreary diet of bread, cheese and eggs. They ate not just chickens eggs but eggs from ducks, geese and wild birds. www.localhistories.org/food 

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Magna Carta

On 15 June 1215 King John sealed Magna Carta. (He didn't actually sign it instead hot wax was dripped onto the document and John pressed his seal into the wax). The Magna Carta proved to be the bedrock of English liberty. www.localhistories.org/kingjohn 

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Place names


BURY, BOROUGH
Is usually a corruption of burh, which meant a fort of fortified place. Aylesbury was Aegel's burh or burgh. Boarhunt was burh funta the spring by the fort. Narborough in Leicestershire was nor (north) burh.

BY
Was the Danish word for village. Derby was Deor By the deer village. Enderby in Leicestershire was Eindrithi's by.

CASTER, CESTER AND CHESTER
Are derived from the Saxon word ceaster, which meant a Roman fort or town. Lancaster was Lune ceaster. Chichester was Cissa's ceaster. www.localhistories.org/names 

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Modern Olympic Games

In 1896 the Olympic Games were revived. Wrestling, which had been a popular sport for thousands of years became an Olympic sport in 1904 and the first Olympic Winter Sports were held in 1924.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Captain Cook

I wrote a brief bio of Captain James Cook. Cook was one of the great explorers of the 18th century, known for surveying the coast of New Zealand and claiming New South Wales for Britain. He was also a humane and enlightened man. www.localhistories.org/cook  

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Facebook

You can also follow www.localhistories.org on Facebook

Coffee

I wrote a brief history of coffee. In the Middle Ages coffee was discovered by the Arabs. In the 16th century it spread to Turkey and to Europe. Today coffee is one of the world's most popular drinks. www.localhistories.org/coffee  

Monday, 4 June 2012

Ned Kelly

I wrote a brief article about the infamous bushranger Ned Kelly. When he was hanged in 1880 his last words are supposed to have been 'such is life'. www.localhistories.org/kelly  

Sunday, 3 June 2012

1952

In 1952 18% of households in Britain had a car and 6% had a fridge. In Britain tea rationing ended (there were no tea bags in the UK till 1953). In the USA The first sex change operation was performed. Mr Potato Head was invented. 12,000 people died in a London smog.