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  1. Captain Keitt: illustration of a pirate captain on deck. 	Source: 	Public Domain

    The transition to Pirate Captain often stemmed from a background in privateering or ownership of a ship. Wealthy backers would commission vessels, appointing experienced leaders like Henry Jennings or those with military ranks like Stede Bonnet, who preferred the title of "Major" from his militia days. The title "Captain" wasn't universal; some, like Henry Morgan's former soldier Charles Swan, commanded as merchant captains turned pirates.

    Democratic election was another avenue to captaincy, often following successful mutinies or vacancies. Candidates vied for support, possibly with speeches or informal ballots, though manipulation was common. The newly elected Captain would then appoint lieutenants, including a Quartermaster to balance power.

    Once in command, a Pirate Captain's duties were multifaceted. They managed ship operations, mediated disputes, and represented the crew in negotiations. Despite limited documentation, historical insights suggest a blend of administrative tasks and interpersonal challenges, from maintaining morale to strategizing collective decisions.

  2. Wales Welsh flag waving on the top sunrise mist fog.  Source: Oleksii/Adobe Stock

    When talking about the history of the United Kingdom, England and Scotland tend to steal the spotlight. That’s a shame, because Wales, a land of stunning landscapes and rich cultural heritage, boasts a history that stretches back thousands of years. From evidence of Neanderthals during the prehistoric to Roman occupation and Medieval struggles for independence, Wales has been shaped by various forces and influences. To cover a nation’s entire proud history in one piece barely does it justice but this is a brief overview of the key periods and figures that have left a mark on the nation's identity.

    Wales Through The Ages- The History of Wales

    Like the rest of the United Kingdom, Wales’s fascinating history begins in prehistoric times, with evidence of early human habitation dating back to the Paleolithic era. A Neanderthal jawbone, found at the Bontnewydd Paleolithic site in the valley of the River Elwy shows early humans roamed the Welsh landscape around 230,000 years ago.

    Slightly later, a red skeleton dyed in Red Ochre known as the Red Lady of Paviland was found in the Gower Peninsula’s Limestone caves in 1823. Actually believed to be the remains of an adolescent male, the Red Lady has been dated to the Upper-Paleolithic period, making him/her around 33,000 years old. This makes it the oldest known ceremonial burial in Europe.

  3. Kremsmunster Abbey, Upper Austria, was founded in 777 AD by Tassilo III, Duke of Bavaria, the last of the House of Agilolfings. According to the legend of its foundation, Tassilo established the monastery on the site where his son, Gunther, had been attacked and killed by a wild boar during a hunt. Source: Simone/Adobe Stock

    The House of Agilolfings is a significant, though often overshadowed, dynasty in the history of early medieval Europe. Originating in the region that would later become Bavaria, this noble lineage played a pivotal role in shaping the political, cultural, and social landscape of Central Europe during the early Middle Ages. From their obscure beginnings to their eventual integration into the larger web of European nobility, the Agilolfings were instrumental in the establishment and consolidation of territorial control that would influence the development of medieval states.

    The House of Agilolfings, the Rulers of Bavaria

    The origins of the Agilolfings are shrouded in the mists of early medieval history. The dynasty likely emerged in the mid-6th century AD, though the details of its early genealogical history are largely based on legend and limited historical documentation. The Agilolfings are believed to have descended from a noble family within the Merovingian court, the ruling dynasty of the Frankish kingdom. This connection to the Merovingians provided them with a degree of legitimacy and influence that facilitated their rise to power.

  4. AI rendering of a majestic griffin in rugged terrain.	Source: altitudevisual/Adobe Stock

    New Study Finds Dinosaur Fossils Did Not Inspire the Mythological Griffin

    For centuries, scientists thought they knew where the griffin legend came from. A new study takes a closer look at the data and folklore’s influence on science.

    A popular and widely-promoted claim that dinosaur fossils inspired the legend of the griffin, the mythological creature with a raptorial bird head and wings on a lion body, has been challenged in a new study.

    The Griffin Origin Story

    The specific link between dinosaur fossils and griffin mythology was proposed over 30 years ago in a series of papers and books written by folklorist Adrienne Mayor. These started with the 1989 Cryptozoology paper entitled ‘Paleocryptozoology: a call for collaboration between classicists and cryptozoologists’, and was cemented in the seminal 2000 book ‘The First Fossil Hunters.’ The idea became a staple of books, documentaries and museum exhibits.

    It suggests that an early horned dinosaur of Mongolia and China, Protoceratops, was discovered by ancient nomads prospecting for gold in Central Asia. Tales of Protoceratops bones then travelled southwest on trade routes to inspire, or at least influence, stories and art of the griffin.

  5. : Roman inflation played an important part in the fall of the Roman Empire.		Source: photoguns / Adobe Stock

    What Led to the Fall of Rome, History’s Mightiest Empire? (Video)

    The decline and fall of Rome was not a swift cataclysm but rather a gradual unraveling marked by numerous challenges. The symbolic end in 476 AD, when Odoacer deposed the last Western Roman Emperor, merely punctuated a process long in motion. The Empire's fragmentation into East and West, exacerbated by internal strife and external pressures, set the stage for its eventual demise. Economic troubles, including inflation and excessive taxation, strained the Empire's resources and sowed discontent among its populace.

    The influx of "barbarian" tribes further weakened Rome's grasp on its territories. These tribes, driven by factors like climate change and seeking refuge from marauding Huns, settled within Roman borders, straining the Empire's ability to govern effectively. The once-mighty Roman legions found themselves stretched thin, unable to repel incursions or maintain control over increasingly autonomous regions.

  6. The only known Lorica Squamata model legionary armor in the world, discovered at Satala Ancient City,	Source: Turkish Ministry of Culture/via IHA

     

    One-of-a-Kind Roman Lorica Squamata Armor Restored

    In an unprecedented conservation triumph, the only known example of Roman legionary Lorica Squamata armor, dated to be around 1500 years old, has been meticulously restored in Turkey. This exceptional piece of military history was unearthed from the ancient site of Satala, located in Gümüşhane, during the 2020 excavation season. The restoration project, spearheaded by Turkey's Ministry of Culture and Tourism, showcases an extraordinary effort to preserve and understand Roman military heritage.

    The Journey of Restoration

    Initially discovered with the aid of the Ankara Regional Laboratory, the armor was carefully extracted from the site and transferred to the Erzurum Regional Restoration and Conservation Laboratory in 2021.

     

     

    Satala, Roman legionary base, used by XVI Flavia Firma and XV Apollinaris, Cappadocia, Turkey, where the Lorica Squamata Armor was excavated. (Following Hadrian/CC BY-SA 2.0)

  7. A statue of Yi Sun Shin 3

    The Korean Peninsula, a land rich in history and culture, was once home to three powerful and influential kingdoms: Silla,Goguryeo, andBaekje. These kingdoms, which existed from the late 1st century BC to the late 7th century AD, played key roles in shaping the history, culture, and political landscape of Korea and its neighboring regions. Each kingdom had its own unique characteristics, achievements, and contributions to the development of Korean civilization. The story of the intricate histories of Silla, Goguryeo, and Baekje, explores their origins, political structures, cultural achievements, military exploits, and eventual fates. 

  8. View of Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site. Source:  Zack Frank / Adobe Stock   By Nathan Falde

    Ancient Cahokia of North America Reveals 900-Year-Old Treasures 

    While carrying out excavations at the site of North America’s first great city, which is calledCahokia by historians, a team of archaeologists and students from Saint Louis University unearthed a virtual treasure trove of Native American artifacts and ruins dating back to approximately 1100 to 1200 AD.  

    Located near the site of modern-day St. Louis, Missouri,Cahokia was constructed by the mound-building Mississippian culture, which gave the nearby river its name. The excavation team was digging just to the west of the Cahokia Mounds when they made their discoveries, which surpassed the modest expectations they had when they launched their explorations. 

  9. ‘Democritus’ (1630) by Johannes Moreelse. There have certainly been some strange and funny events in history. Source: Public Domain

    History is often presented in grey, rather dry terms, but when you do a bit of digging, our past is full of remarkable people who had wicked senses of humor and died with as much vigor as they lived.

  10. Nemrut Mountain at 2150 meters with colossal statues, and stone heads. A UNESCO World Heritage site. Anatolia, modern day Turkey. 	Source: Bulent/Adobe Stock

    Ancient Anatolia: Cradle of Civilizations (Video)

    Ancient Anatolia stands as a rich tapestry of human civilization, with its history weaving together a myriad of cultures, empires, and innovations that have left an indelible mark on the world. From the Paleolithic Period to the Iron Age, the landscape that is now mostly Turkey has been shaped by the ebb and flow of numerous civilizations, each contributing to its vibrant mosaic of heritage.

    Among these ancient peoples, the Hittites reigned supreme in Anatolian history. Renowned for their military might and diplomatic prowess, the Hittites established one of the earliest known peace treaties with Egypt, the Treaty of Kadesh, solidifying their status as a dominant force in the ancient Near East. Their capital, Hattusa, boasted impressive fortifications and architectural marvels, reflecting their advanced civilization.