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Top new questions this week:

When was it discovered that the stars are not all lying on the same sphere?

In Ptolemy and Copernicus' systems, the stars were believed to rest upon a single sphere, the 'celestial sphere'. People thought they were all the same distance away from earth. Kepler's insight was ...

asked by Ne Mo 11 votes
answered by andy256 11 votes

Who owned Franz Josef islands between 1918-1926?

Franz Josef land was discovered and claimed by Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1873. Previously Norway discovered it, but they never reported the discovery. The Austro-Hungarian Empire dissoluted in ...

russia colonization austria hungary arctic  
asked by CsBalazsHungary 9 votes
answered by Branko Sego 3 votes

Strange Symbol Painted on Basement Floor

Given the layers of dirt this symbol and the walkway were found under, I assume it was painted before the 1960s. The house was likely built between 1900-1913, with the basement being dug at the same ...

united-states contemporary-history identification  
asked by SeanFromIT 8 votes

Identifying a ship in Sydney Harbour

I am trying to identify the ship in this picture in order to date the photograph. The writing on the back says it is "Aquatania" (sic) but when I search for that name on the internet the Aquitania has ...

20th-century australia nautical  
asked by Joanne Withnall 7 votes
answered by T.E.D. 5 votes

When passports/border checks became widespread?

I was reading the Wikipedia on passports, and there were numerous important dates in passport history, but I didn't find any date when passports became widely used documents for travelling. I see ...

20th-century 19th-century international-relations  
asked by CsBalazsHungary 6 votes
answered by Tyler Durden 5 votes

Dresses of Catherine the Great

How many dresses did Catherine the Great have in her wardrobe just before she died. I have a clue that one of their lovers took notes. I'm still researching and I will post if I find something.

asked by Dimitar Nikolov 6 votes

Whig party identification in the House of Lords

After the Whigs became subsumed into the Liberal party, did the label survive in the House of Lords? As of today, the longest serving current peer began his tenure during the Second World War. It ...

asked by Ne Mo 6 votes

Greatest hits from previous weeks:

Why didn't Imperial Japan attack the Soviet Union during World War 2?

Japan and the Soviet Union shared a common border in Manchuria and the German invasion of the Soviet Union weakened the Soviets greatly. In view of the advantages to Japan in seeing the Soviet Union ...

20th-century ww2 japan soviet-union  
asked by Jay Riggs 55 votes
answered by io.x86 51 votes

What factors enabled Europe to conquer almost the whole world?

As we probably all know, after ancient and medieval times European countries traveled to almost every part of the Globe. Today's heritage are, among many others, Roman law and alphabet, Gregorian ...

europe civilizations new-world early-modern imperialism  
asked by Voitcus 14 votes
answered by T.E.D. 15 votes

Can you answer these?

During the age of fragmentation in Tibet was there any major power?

When reading about the end of the Tibetan empire, information about the political situation of the area is scarce (most authors focus a lot on the religion). Basically, who was de facto or de jure in ...

medieval-china tibet  
asked by Bruno Hebling Vieira 1 vote

What was the congressional level of support for Emancipation Proclamation?

Wikipedia covers pretty extensively the political details surrounding the 13th Amendment, including difficulties in passing it in the House. However, it doesn't note what the level of Congressional ...

american-civil-war us-congress  
asked by DVK 4 votes

What was the attitude of Brazil's government towards the Spanish Civil War?

I suppose you could argue it's not uber-important what they thought about a war on another continent in which they had no direct stake, but all the other countries in Latin America couldn't afford to ...

spanish-civil-war brazil  
asked by Ne Mo 1 vote
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