Zenobia's Rebellion in the Historia Augusta
The Historia Augusta (Great History) is a Latin work of the 4th century CE that chronicles the lives of Roman emperors from 117-285 CE. Among the many stories related is the history of Zenobia of Palmyra and her challenge to Roman authority...
Love, Sex, and Marriage in Ancient Egypt
Although marriages in ancient Egypt were arranged for communal stability and personal advancement, there is evidence that romantic love was as important to the people as it is to those in today. Romantic love was a popular theme for poetry...
The Masaesyli and Massylii of Numidia
The North African Berber kingdom of Numidia (202-40 BCE) was originally inhabited by a tribe (or federation of tribes) known as the Masaesyli, to the west, and a coalition of smaller tribes, known as the Massylii, to the east. The meaning...
Coin of Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II
Gold coin of Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II, minted in Sicily between 1211-1250 CE. Weighs 5.2 grammes and measures 20 mm (British Museum, London)
Richard the Lionheart
A detail of a 19th century CE painting by Merry-Joseph Blondel of the English king Richard I of England, the 'Lionheart' (r. 1189-1199 CE). (Palace of Versailles, France)
Elephants in Greek & Roman Warfare
In the search for ever more impressive and lethal weapons to shock the enemy and bring total victory the armies of ancient Greece, Carthage, and even sometimes Rome turned to the elephant. Huge, exotic, and frightening the life out of an...
Roman Siege Warfare
In ancient warfare open battles were the preferred mode of meeting the enemy, but sometimes, when defenders took a stand within their well-fortified city or military camp, siege warfare became a necessity, despite its high expense in money...
Esarhaddon (reigned 681-669 BCE) was the third king of the Sargonid Dynasty of the Neo-Assyrian Empire. He was the youngest son of King Sennacherib (reigned 705-681 BCE), and his mother was not the queen but a concubine named Zakutu (also...
Saint Valentine’s Day, or simply Valentine’s Day, is celebrated on the 14th of February, almost internationally but primarily in western societies. It is a commemorative Christian feast for some but a secular occasion for others who see it...
King Louis IX Carrying the Crown of Thorns
Created in Tours, France, sometime between 1245-1248 CE, this stained glass panel depicts King Louis IX (r. 1226-1270 CE) carrying the crown of thorns. Measures 55 x 35 cm. (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York)