Anyone interested in Ancient and Medieval History?

I'd love people to share these interests with, but everybody keeps talking about world wars and the industrial revolution, which make my eyes glaze over. I like the ancient and prehistoric anyone else, or is this yet another one of my interests that nobody else shares?

  • I've tried to get into South American stuff, but theres just something about it that makes my eyes glaze over, Egypt I do better with. Atlantis interests me too, but I do wonder if its not an aglomeration of stories and history about the end of the Ice Age? So much habitable land would of quite quickly become innundated, taking with it habitation sites and everything else. I do think what we loosely term civilisation is much older than is currently thought, so many of the finds in Turkey show this, as does underwater archaeology from so many places, a lot of it about the Indus Valley Culture. Theres still so much to learn and discover.

  • I also love Cornwell's work.

    "SHIELD. WALL.!!"

  • are you interested in the Jose Arguelles Mayan calendar books and dials at all. I love it's elegance and the fractal patterns the cycles make. I got to see some codices at the museum of archeology in Mexico city. I had to wear gloves. It was a truly transcendent! 

  • Yeah I have an interest in Mayan & Egyptian civilisations. The legend of Atlantis fascinates me!

  • I like history I'm learning about ancient Egypt atm...just started learning about Cleopatra. I think history is so interesting to learn about. 

  • I love all of Cornwell's work. He is so good at bringing history into life.

  • I could never got on with Shardlake, I don't know why because it's everything I like about a good story, but somehow the writting just didn't grab me. I must admit to getting a bit bored of the Tudors.

  • I didn't think you were dictating, like I said earlier Ephesus was shut when I went as it was to early in the season and that I loved Istanbul when I went there.

  • Not having the funds to study any further is why I've not done it.

    Does anyone watch Digging for Britain, with Alice Roberts? It's a round up of all the years archaeological finds and has been running every year for about a decade now.

    I know it's fiction, but I loved Vikings, some of it, like the funerals is based on contemporary accounts from travellers, it's hard to know how accurate they are and if they're not just travellers tall tales, but fascinating none the less.

  • My experience is it's mainly pressing play on videos and typing stuff in like you would here. You are very lucky if you have the resources to do an MA or PhD as an adult and definitely should go for it!

  • Possibly some courses, but its all online and I can't do most of that online stuff, from what I saw they're a bit limited, subject wise and 4 weeks is too short, I really want to go back to uni full time and do an MA, then a Phd.

  • I am sure there will be courses on Futurelearn which would interest you. But don't quote me on that.

  • I was not dictating, i just posted where i visited on Holiday.

  • I read that years ago when it first came out.

    I'm not a huge fan of Bernard Cornwell and Arthurian stuff is always tricky to deal with as is the coming of Christianity and any conflict with the various Pagan cults. There's very little real evidence of exactly how Christ was worshipped in the early days, we actually have more evidence from after the fall of Rome than before.

    Conn Igulden wrote a fictionalised biography of the Anglo-Saxon Saint Dunstan which is interesting.

    I also love Jack Hight's Saladin trilogy, telling the second and third crusades from Saladin's point of view.

    Alison Weir, wrote a wonderful biography of Eleanor of Aquitaine, this is a real non fiction history book and detail the life of an extraordinary woman

    I'm not a fan of the so called enlightenment as I don't think it was very enlightened, especially if you were female, the roles of women became much more codified and during this time and led to a lot of oppression.

    One really good book I read recently was How The World Made The West, by Josephine Quinn, it covers 4000 years of history.

    Most of my interests are based in Britain, but do stretch out beyond it's shores. Prehistory fascinates me, all the stone circles and cursus monuments, Silbury Hill etc, what were they doing, what did they mean? I also wonder about ship building in the ancient world, I think it was much more sophisticated than we think, we know there were vast international trade networks in the prehistoric world, Cornish tin turning up in all sort of places in the eastern Med.

    I didn't make it to Ephasus, it was shut, to early in the season when I went to Turkey, but I did see the Temple of Apollo at Dydim, loads of wild tortotoises there, I thought I was seeing things, they looked like walking rocks!. I loved Istanbul in the Sultanamhet, theres so much history it's boggling, Roman, rubbing up against Crusader era castles.

    My degree disertation subject was on Medieval Womens Medicine, that was fascinating to research, there was a lot more of it than we're commonly led to believe and much of it was suppressed and distorted during the so called enlightenment. Fertility problems wern't just a failure in women, but in men too, female orgasm and pleasure was seen as essential to pregnancy. With a few exceptions girls didn't have sex with their husbands, even if married young, until they'd had periods for about two years as it was seen as dangerous to the health of mother and child.

  • Hi TheCatwoman.
    I visited Ephesus in Turkey 10 Years ago, i think it goe's back to about 138 A.D.
    Amazing place. Was not really interested until i got there.
    I also visited the " House of Mary " on top of a huge mountain meant to be the resting place of the Mother of Jesus.
    Surreal. You can really sense " something " weather You are Religious or not. Errie actually.
    Very peaceful experience.
    ( Sorry about my writing " font " above, not sure how i did that )
    Oh God, i think i,m Possessd !  Arrrggghhh.....

  • OOoo if we're doing book recommendations, I am almost through Shardlake series by CJ Sansom.  A very readable set of novels set in the time of Henry VIII and a hunchback lawyer called Matthew Shardlake.

    It deals both with many aspects of the reformation interwoven with murder mysteries.  As Matthew has to face a lot of prejudice because of his disability it's also interesting to people who feel marginalised because of their needs also.

  • Mee! 

    I've always loved history, especially British history like medieval and Roman times. I own a lot of books on both! One of my favourites r.e. medieval times is Year 1000 by Robert Lacey and Danny Danziger - link below - it's a really great book giving a month by month description of the average person in mediaeval Briton in the year 1000. Fascinating book to read, highly recommend!

    Other interesting books I own and would recommend are The Inheritance of Rome, Framing the middle ages, and Medieval Europe by Chris Wickham. All three are amazing. 

  • I'm interested. I'm on the second novel in a trilogy called The Warlord Chronicles. They're written by Bernard Cornwell. They're about Arthur, Merlin and the knights of the round table, and all of that legend. It's all not provably true but much of it could be. There's a lot in there about the conflict between the Pagan beliefs of ancient Britons and the Christianity that came with the Romans, and that then became popular increasingly with the native Britons themselves (though not immediately and not with everyone, there was much bloodshed involved). 

    Which parts of history interest you?

  • I recently finished a trilogy of books by Joe Abercrombie which are set in a mediaval sort of environment with lots of politics, slavery, wars and subterfuge. Very well written and covers a lot of the issues of living in such a time / environment.

    The books are Half A King, Half A War and Half A World.

    They are actually set far in the future long after society decimated itself so there is a hint of sci-fi but it is kept to an absolute minimum and is really just a story plot item.