Friday, 28 February 2014

Women's rights

In the Ancient World women's rights varied from one civilization to another. In Ancient Egypt women had virtually the same rights as men. They could own property and they could sign contracts. A famous woman Pharaoh called Hatshepsut once ruled Egypt. 

Sunday, 23 February 2014


I wrote a little history of Honduras. Its still a very poor country with a long way to go to eliminate poverty. 

Friday, 21 February 2014

Monday, 17 February 2014

Renaissance Italy

In the late 14th and 15th centuries a great cultural change came over Italy. It is called the Renaissance, which means 'rebirth'. In the Middle Ages education was mostly controlled by the church for the church. In the late 14th century there were an increasing number of secular educated men in Italy. There was also an increasing interest in the art and literature of ancient Greece and Rome. At the time Greek scholars (from the Byzantine Empire) came to Italy.

The Renaissance benefited from the printing press, which was introduced into Venice by 1470. Furthermore rich Italians patronised the arts.

Meanwhile Italian trade and commerce prospered. The city-states flourished. In the 15th century Florence was ruled by the Medicis, a family of bankers. (Florence was a republic ruled by an oligarchy but the Medicis managed to control it). The greatest Medicis were Cosimo who ruled from 1434 to 1464 and Lorenzo the Magnificent who ruled from 1469 to 1492. 

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Life boats

A man named Lionel Lukin was a pioneer of the lifeboat. Its difficult to say who invented the lifeboat because several men had a similar idea around the same time. Nevertheless Lukin patented his idea in 1785.His invention has saved countless lives. Thank you Mr Lukin. 

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

18th Century Towns

During the 18th century towns in Britain grew larger. Nevertheless most towns still had populations of less than 10,000. However in the late 18th century new industrial towns in the Midland and the North of England mushroomed. Meanwhile the population of London grew to nearly 1 million by the end of the century. Other towns were much smaller. The population of Liverpool was about 77,000 in 1800. Birmingham had about 73,000 people and Manchester had about 70,000. Bristol had a population of about 68,000. Sheffield was smaller with 31,000 people and Leeds had about 30,000 people. Leicester had a population of about 17,000 in 1800. In the south Portsmouth had a population of about 32,000 in 1800 while Exeter had about 20,000 people. 

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Life in the Middle Ages

In the Middle Ages chimneys were a luxury. As time passed they became more common but only a small minority could afford them. Certainly no peasant could afford one.

About 1180 for the first time since the Romans rich people had panes of glass in the windows. At first glass was very expensive and only rich people could afford it but by the late 13th and early 14th centuries the middle classes began to have glass in some of their windows. Those people who could not afford glass could use thin strips of horn or pieces of linen soaked in tallow or resin which were translucent.