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History newsletter

Top new questions this week:

Why did Native Americans die from European diseases while Europeans didn't catch serious diseases from the New World?

Why did Native Americans die of European diseases while Europeans didn't have serious diseases from the New World? I read that most Native American victims of colonization in the new world died of ...

europe colonization native-americans disease age-of-discovery  
asked by CsBalazsHungary 60 votes
answered by two sheds 70 votes

Why did Japanese samurai disembowel themselves?

Japanese samurais were known to commit ritual suicide by stabbing themselves in the belly. Why? Why not hang themselves? Cut their own throats? Does Japanese culture view disembowelment differently ...

japan culture death samurai medieval-japan  
asked by Crème Caramelita 6 votes
answered by Semaphore 16 votes

When was the "New Kingdom" of Egypt first called that?

When was the New Kingdom of Egypt (c. 1550BC to 1077BC) first called "New Kingdom" (or something cognate)?

ancient-history ancient-egypt etymology place-names  
asked by Uri Zarfaty 6 votes
answered by Semaphore 8 votes

Why today's Japan celebrates Western New Year but China still celebrates Chinese New Year?

Before Meiji Restoration, Japan used Chinese calendar and celebrated Chinese New Year just as China did. Nowadays, both Japan and China have adopted Western calendar. However, Japan celebrates ...

china japan festival  
asked by user11531 5 votes
answered by Semaphore 4 votes

Why did the Ming Dynasty Treasure Fleet Voyages end?

Have we come to know more reasons, on why the Treasure Fleet Voyages of the Ming Dynasty ceased, other than eunuch-to-civil power shift? Wikipedia says However, in 1433, the voyages ceased and ...

china political-history naval international-relations medieval-china  
asked by Rohit 5 votes
answered by Semaphore 5 votes

The monumental/architectural sculptures of Petra - has there been any research on the likely craftsmen who executed them?

The Nabatean people who founded Petra are described as a pre-Islamic Arab people. Centrally located on the spice trade routes, they achieved fabulous wealth and settled in the city of Petra. A recent ...

ancient-history middle-east architecture ethnicity  
asked by memphisslim 5 votes
answered by two sheds 5 votes

Anti-personnel use of blowguns

The wikipedia entry for blowguns currently states that blowguns were historically used to hunt small wild game and only rarely used as an anti-personnel armament. This made me wonder if there are any ...

asked by BlackVegetable 4 votes
answered by neubau 4 votes

Greatest hits from previous weeks:

What events led to the fall of the Zhou Dynasty during the Warring States period?

The title above is fairly broad, so more specifically, what specific events led to the Warring States period experienced towards the end of the Western Zhou Dynasty in ancient China? As the lineage ...

china political-history ancient-china  
asked by GPierce 17 votes
answered by lins314159 12 votes

What did Germany do after World War II to recover so successfully that it became more prosperous than its WW2 victors?

Germany lost in World War II. Being the loser, its economy started at a disadvantage compared to her World War II victors in the aftermath of WW2. However, Germany managed to recover more ...

20th-century ww2 economy germany  
asked by curious 12 votes
answered by Lennart Regebro 11 votes

Can you answer these?

When and why did smiling at strangers and in photos become customary in the United States?

In the US, in my experience, it's customary to smile when meeting a stranger. Even in an interaction as casual as passing someone in the street without a word, a smile is normal and expected. In ...

united-states social-history photography  
asked by Robert 3 votes

What was the prevalence of ethnic minorities in 15th century Bohemia?

What was the prevalence of what we in contemporary western culture would consider "ethnic minorities" (Africans, East Asians, South Asians, Latinos, etc) in the population of early 15th century ...

15th-century ethnicity bohemia population  
asked by android927 3 votes

Napoleon's role in serfdom abolition

It is known that Napoleon has given constitutions to a set of countries. The constitutions were written in the style of the French one. How many of those napoleonic constitutions have played a role ...

napoleon serfdom  
asked by horsh 1 vote
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