110 Answered Questions for the topic Europe

What were the thoughts of the Celts, Romans and other ancient European people about the standing stones which survive from prehistoric times?

All over Europe, there are monuments of stone such as stonehenge, although many are not so grand as stonehenge is. Contra *Asterix*, the Celts didn't carve out menhirs and things like that. The... more

04/04/19

When did homosexuality become unacceptable in Europe?

In the ancient greek world male homosexuality was common and didn't attract the same scorn as it did even 100 years ago. So 2,000 years ago, it was acceptable, and 100 years ago it was... more

Have there been any efforts by the countries of Europe to restore their monarchies?

Have there been any effort, polls, referendum in Europe (especially Eastern ex-communist countries) to restore deposed monarchies, like in Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, etc.? Most Monarchies were... more

04/04/19

Was Mohammed known and respected in seventeenth-century Europe?

I’m reading Andrew Pettigree’s fascinating book, *The Invention of News: How the world came to know about itself*. In the early days of newsprint, many felt that only people who actually needed to... more

Why were people from the Asian Steppes able to militarily dominate Europeans on a repeated basis?

From the Huns through the Mongolians, why were nomadic people from the east able to create such havoc in Europe? Was it an endless 'first mover' advantage with horse domestication? Was it a higher... more

04/04/19

Was African slave trade ever directed towards Europe? If not, why?

The capture, shipping and sale of African slaves was most famously directed towards the colonies of European empires in the Americas, where they were put to work on plantations and other harsh,... more

What was the impetus for some African nations to participate in the slave trade?

I know that some African nations participated in the slave trade by providing captured enemies as slaves to Europeans, but what are some of the reasons they did? Was it simply a new economic... more

Did Charlemagne's Christian conquest of Germany cause the Vikings to hit back at Britain?

A [documentary on The Dark Ages](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dark_Ages:_An_Age_of_Light) says that Vikings invaded the British isles after Charlemagne of France conquered some of Germany and... more

04/04/19

Where did the Crusaders go after 1291?

With most historians saying the Crusades stopped in 1291, and the disappearance of the Crusader States/Outremer, I'm left to wonder: what happened to the Europeans who had built a life there? Did... more

04/03/19

In medieval Europe, were children born in an annulled marriage automatically illegitimate?

I know that under modern laws (even within the Catholic Church), children born in a marriage that is later annulled are still considered legitimate, because they were born of a putative marriage.... more

In what ways did the rise of a true middle class in Europe during the late 19th century become apparent?

The late 19th and early 20th centuries were very transformative for Europe with the rise of a real middle class. Typically before this the middle class was more of a bourgeoisie and not the middle... more

03/27/19

Did any European monarch execute their sister or other direct female relative?

In my search, I found examples of kings/queens having their wives and brothers executed, but I cannot seem to locate any example for sisters, mothers, and fathers.

Who was Balavignus?

I was reading up on some history on the Black Death and came across the name "Balavignus". He was a Jewish doctor who urged people to apply hygienic measures, based on some biblical verses in... more

Why did Europeans (and not people in other regions) dominate oceans?

Having a brief look at civilization history, I find that Europeans have a significant dominance over other regions when it comes to sailing. This becomes more obvious after the 15th century when... more

How did such a relatively minor event as the assassination of an archduke start World War I?

The assassination of the Austrian archduke was, considered in the context of _all Europe's_ near-explosive politics, a relatively minor event. So how did it cause such a major war?

What is known about the possibility of a "real King Arthur"?

I once saw a documentary that discussed a discovered possible "round table" but wondered how "pie in the sky" this possibility was as well as just how much/how little evidence is there for any... more

Did the Pope's crossbow and archery bans have any effect?

One of the more famous and certainly curious decisions at the [Second Council of the Lateran](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Council_of_the_Lateran) in 1139 was a ban on using missile troops... more

Did medieval scholars believe the Earth was round?

There seems to be almost a consensus that the medieval belief on flat earth is a myth. [Wikipedia even has a whole article dedicated to this... more

How did the First French Empire and allies differ from the other European monarchies at that time?

During the Napoleonic Wars (especially towards the end), France and most of its allies (e.g. Kingdom of Italy, Duchy of Warsaw, Kingdom of Spain) are absolute monarchies. However, they seemed to... more

03/19/19

How did Europeans first acquire gunpowder?

I know that gunpowder was first invented in China around the 10th century, and it seems that gunpowder likely made its way to Europe via the "Silk Road." However, there doesn't seem to be a ton of... more

Why are the German and French languages so different?

My understanding (which could be wrong) is the following: During and before the period of the fall of western Rome (roughly 400 AD), the Franks and the Alemanni were tribal people who moved... more

What steps were taken at the end of WW2 to prevent a WW3?

I've heard a lot of unofficial stories regarding various steps that were taken at the end of WW2 to prevent a WW3. What were these steps? Did they work? Or is America's status as a superpower a... more

Did the Romans see Africa as a black continent? Was there a perception of a divide between Africa and Europe?

Nowadays the Western world perceives Africa as the continent of the black people and hence a standard African person as a black individual. How did the people in the Roman empire perceive the... more

Why couldn't bastards inherit titles?

Why were bastards historically not able to inherit nobility or monarchy from their parents? What about being a bastard made one unfit to rule? For example William IV of the UK was succeeded by his... more

Who taught Russian in Eastern-bloc satellite countries?

After the USSR gained many satellites countries in central/eastern Europe in 1945, Russian became obligatory at school. It seems those Russian courses were highly unpopular and only a small... more

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