Monday, August 29, 2011


Ok, so we’re back in China today :D So you remember the last time we visited this ol’ place? The Mongols were all up in derrr and stuffz. All right. We got that down.
So the Chinese didn’t might like that. However, the past few Mongol rulers after Kublai Khan weren’t that fierce. So the Chinese decided to overthrow the Mongols, and a Beggar Buddhist Monk drove them out. He took the throne and renamed himself Hong-wu, which means war-like.

He ruled China like a dictator, he considered himself a god, killed anyone who didn’t agree, and was a pretty great guy. Uhmyeahno. He was not a great person. He replaced China’s government and renamed the Dynasty “Ming” which means Bright. It lasted about 300 years.
The “brightness” of the Ming dynasty was evident. He set up a little *cough*UNDERSTATEMENT*cough* test for those who wanted to be in government or were in government. It was a crazy exam and some went insane or committed suicide. :D
There was also beautiful artwork in the history of China. This Dyansty was known for the Blue and White porcelain too. There were amazing gardens, but the most special thing about the Ming dynasty was the architecture.
Well there was a palace in Bejing. It was a ~forbidden palacceee~ and only the Emperor, His family, and a VERY select few of his nobles could live there. The third emperor of the Ming came up with the idea of building the “Forbidden City”. It was to keep an eye on the Mongols, and a sorta revenge/na-na-na-na-boo-boo thing. He put it RIGHT ON TOP of the place where Kublai Khan’s Kourt was.
In reality, the Forbidden City was a City within a city within a city. INCEPTION. The outer city is exactly what it sounds like. It is to protect the center. It is surrounded by a GIANT wall that is still there today. Behind the outer city is called the Imperial City. It had large offices, parks, temples, and all that jayazz. Nice place for ceremonies. The Emperor liked riding through on an elephant. Uhmkay. And then within the walls of the Imperial City was the Forbidden City *fanfareee*. It was the most elaborate and the most beautiful. It is surrounded completely by a moat and huge walls. It is the largest palace in the world, and it covers 720,000 acres. Which is a WHOLE lot.
100,000 artists were employed to decorate the palace. Cranes, Turtles, and Lions were all over the place, which represented long life. 5 clawed dragons were also there, which symbolized power because all other dragons only had four claws. TROLOLO.
Even before the palace was built, it was planned and laid out with a whole lotta OCD-ness. It was planned to watch North, south, east, and west. Every line of every structure was planned to be in balance, each gate and space represented an organ of the body, and the 5 elements of wood, fire, water, metal, and earth were woven into it’s making. The numbers 9 and 5 were ~myyyysticalll numberrrrsss~ and they were features a lot on the inside and outside the palace. There were 9,999 rooms, there were 5 bridges that spanned the golden river, and a whole lotta other super intricate and thought-out stuff.
The Chinese would refer to the palace as the “Purple Forbidden City” It wasn’t purple. It was red and yellow. lolwut.
Anyways, it was called purple because that was a symbolic color for heaven and royalty. Hmh.

And it’s a museum nao.
Even though it was nice and protected, they still had enemies to fight. Only 6 of the 14 emperors that lived in the palace lived past the age of 40.
Maybe it was lead poisoning. MAYBE it was because the 5th letter of the alphabet is e and the 9th is i, so you only need a d to spell die. I THINK THAT’S THE REASON. But whatever.
It was not only the Emperor and his city that was forbidden. It was the entire empire that had this mentality of isolation and uppity-ness. Of course, this might be due to the fact that some people over from Europe weren’t the best influence for them. The Portuguese were traders came over to China to settle. No crime in that, amirite? WELL THEN THEY STARTED TAKING OVER TOWNS AND KIDNAPPING CHILDREN.
So then they just quit trading with outsiders. They quit sending out explorers, and the “Silk road” was shut down, and China learned to be self-sufficient. So China relied on nobody but themselves. odood. They took nothing and they gave nothing. Though things have changed. Just a little. *cough*UNDERSTATEMENT*cough*
The end.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


So everyone knows about the Black death. Kinda. People know about it, but not actually about it. If that makes sense. People don’t know a lot of stuff about it, but they just... nevermind.
Anyways. Symptoms included Vomiting Blood, large swollen glands about the sizes of eggs under the armpits and the groin area, and patches of blood turning *dark purple* under the skin.
Yeah. Fun times. It affected everyone: Peasants, Kings, Doctors, Children, Women, Men, Farmers, everyone.
The Black Death is known to have been carried by rats. Actually, it was a little germ that was carried on fleas that hitched rides on rats. The fleas had the disease, and spread it to rats, which died. The fleas did not die, though. The little tiny germs just hung out in the flea’s belly, and didn’t effect it.
Once affected, people died within 1-5 days. So a lot of people were confused as to why, exactly, people were dropping dead in the streets. It was not contagious except for those who had their lungs infected because they’d breathe it into the air. Whenever towns became infected, people would flee (no pun.) into the next town, taking all of their flea infested belongings with them.
Kings and Queens locked themselves up in their castles, Priests in their Churches, Monks in their Monasteries, but that didn’t really help. People tried to burn it out of cities by burning the houses and clothes of the diseased.
It seems like it started somewhere in Asia, in the trading routes. Where there are ships there are rats, where there are rats there are fleas, etc. etc. Blah blah blah. Nobody figured this out until about 600 years later though.
The plague “started” in Italy, and you know how? The Mongols spread it on purpose. The made war on Italy, and the Mongols kick-started the Black Death. You now how? *They took dead people and catapulted them over walls.* Yeaaaah. So people were running away, taking the disease with them. So eventually it was spread all over the world. A lot of people died in not a lot of time.
So with a lot of people dead, the workers that were alive had to work a lot harder. Then they revolted. And so the feudal system fell apart.
The end. o-o


Thursday, August 18, 2011


So the 100 year war WASN’T ACTUALLY 100 YEARS LONG. Apparently, it was 116 years long. But 100 years just sounds better.
So this was all about revenge. England wanted revenge from the French. Why? Well, BACK IN 1066~ the French beat the stink out of the English! So England was pretty mad.
So, the king of France died, but he didn’t have a son. What happens if the king doesn’t have a son? OH GURRRL.

The king’s cousin, Philip VI, was in France, and his nephew, Edward III was in England. So they decided to battle for who would rule France. This was a perfect opportunity for England to get back at France too, even though the Battle of Hastings was, oh, ABOUT 300 YEARS AGO.
So Edward decided to stir up a BIG TUB-A STINK. He just got through making peace with Scotland, and now he decides to make a big war with the French. So he crosses the English channel to do it. And he sure did a good job. He beat the French in the sea, and on land. A factor in this was the English’s weapons. They had like a mega-crossbow, and the English used GUNPOWDER. STRAIGHT-UP GANGSTA YO. Even though the English had THOUSANDS of fewer soldiers, they still prevailed.
“Hey man I’m outta money and I’m tired.”
“Me too.”
“Wanna call a truce?”
So after Edward III died, Edward, Prince of Wales ruled England. He was called the Black Prince because of his attire.
He captured the King of France (John II) and his son in the battle of Poitiers, pronounced PWA-TAYYY. As in PAR-TAYYY but different.
AND FRANCE WAS SO EMBARRASSED. And so they gave England some money and a lotta land and did a treaty. So England quick attacking them.
And so things went on... Some new people came to the throne, but they were children who didn’t know about the matters of war... AND THEN THEY GREW UP. They were greedy too. And the King of England was lyke “I WANT ENGLAND AND FRANCE.” And the King of France was lyke “I WAS FRANCE AND ENGLAND.” So they had a wedding! It never occurred to them that there would then be two kings, but that didn’t matter. The King of England, Richard II, was going to marry the daughter of Charles VII of France. She was Princess Isabella. How pretty :3
It says that Richard, at his time of marriage, was 29. There’s no problem with that.
But Isabella.... well.... She was about 7. Oh, did I mention she was his /second/ wife?

Now this was political, aristocratic, blah blah blah. I’m still grossed out. So everything was peaceful, but everything wasn’t nice. Both countries were reallly poor. There was big-time looting, and a lot of farms were abandoned, which means less food, which means less people, which means a lot of different things. AND THEN THE BLACK PLAGUE DECIDES TO BREAK OUT. Yaaay.
The English King, Henry V, had this great idea. He wanted the throne of France, and so he started a battle. He had less than half the troops of the French, but they still won in /half an hour/. So he got the throne, married a girl to secure his place, and made the French sign a treaty that gave the crown to the English. Sir William Shakespeare wrote a play about this, entitled... Henry V. Yeah.
So back to war!
And along comes a little boy. Someone unsuspecting, a teenager. A French teenager.

Thursday, August 11, 2011


Ok so, you know Mexico? Of course you do. It’s kinda shaped like a shark and is filled with all these bronze-skinned people with a few white-skinned people and-
Oh wait, that’s America. Same difference.
But anyways, the capital of Mexico was Mexico City. You following? Is it to difficult? This is pretty deep stuff here man, if you need to take a break I understand. Try drinking some water.
Anyways, Mexico City was inhabited long ago by a people called the Aztects. Not to be confused with the Mayans, who wrote the 2012 theories. No no, the Aztects were the ones who were known for their brutal human sacrifices to their fearsome gods. YAAAY.
For a while they were nomadic. They were like most tribes, fighting for wives, prisoners, slaves, all that. However, they thought they were being led by THE ALMIGHTY LEFT-HANDED HUMMINGBIRD GOD OF WAR AND THE SUNNNN.
No lie. He was a left-handed (?) Hummingbird god, who was the god of war and the sun. I promise. His name was Huitzilopochtli, pronounced wee-tsee-loh-pohch-tlee. They believed they were being led to a special place by him, and they would know they were there when they saw a sign. What was the sign? An eagle eating a snake on top of a blooming cactus. Well then. (By the way, this is the symbol on the Mexican flag.) Well supposedly, they left their home island of Aztlán to follow Mr. Hummingbird. The island of Aztlan has never actually been found, so...
Anyways, in their search, they came under rule of another tribe. The chief of said tribe offered his daughter in marriage to the chief of the Aztec tribe. Now normally, this would be a wonderful, nice gesture. “OH, HOW WONDERFUL, THIS CHEIF IS OFFERING ME HIS BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTER!” Well, in the wedding, while the father was arriving to see his little girl get married to /the/ chief, guess what?
For some reason, the chief and father did not find this pleasing. Hmh. How odd.
Of course, this might be the chief’s fault. I mean, HE offered his daughter. You have to think ahead! I mean, MAYBE this guy MIGHT offer my daughter’s heart as a GLORIOUS SACRIFICE TO THE ALMIGHTY LEFT-HANDED HUMMINGBIRD GOD OF WAR AND THE SUNNN.
But anyways, after they were thrown out of the tribe by the daughterless-chief, they went off and kept looking for their eagle eating a snake on top of a flowering cactus. So somehow, they found said eagle. Don’t ask me how, but I’m thinking it might have been a hallucination from the heat or something. I dunno. But they had very strict rules and very structured lives.
The average day of an Aztec started with the blowing of a conch-shell and the beating of drums.
A woman would start grinding some corn. FOR TORTILLAS. OMNOMNOM.
Ahhahaha. A man would take a lovely steam bath, and then go off to work in the fields. The city in which they lived was actually pretty swampy. It was pretty wet, so they had plots of a lot of mud and trees growing all around said plot of mud. PICTURE TAYM.

That’s what it looked like. Canal boats were used to cross between each of them. Some of these things are still in existence today.
About 10:00 in the morning, the conches are blown again. FOOD TAYM. They probably went back to work after that, and then in the after noon this was done again for a big community meal.
They would eat chilies, veggies, fruits, fish, turtles, frogs, snakes, a buncha stuffz. Something interesting is that food was portioned to age. A 3 year old would get a half-tortilla, 5-6 would get a whole, 6-12 would get one and a half, and 13 and up wold get two.
Children would work. Hard. Laziness was not tolerated, and they’d get punished severely. They’d prick them with cactus needles, make them inhale smoke from chillies, and they’d be tied up overnight and thrown in a mud puddle.
Poor boys would learn to fight and farm, and rich boys would learn astrology, history, fighting, warrior-skills and dream-interpretation. The rich boy wuld give blood offerings at school, bathe in cold water, and fast. Bravery was valued by the rich and the poor. Also, when one captured a soldier in war, they could advance into society and cut a long strand of hair in the back.
Noblemen played a game like basketball. It was that one game they have in The Road to El Dorado, you know? That that that one....
I can't find a good picture of it. It's called Ullamaliztli. And it is srsbrsns. IF you lost, you died.
Men were normally married by the age of 20 to a girl around 16, whose arms were covered in red feathers. Hmh.
Women would sew, cook, and shop at a market.
Before the night ended, a man would sharpen his tools and work on his home. Normal homes were mud houses with dirt floors, but noblemen had adobe-style houses. The night ended with... A CONCH-SHELL.
Besides a strict time guide, they also had a strict clothing guide. Each of the three classes had different styles. Nobility had long, soft capes and wore sandals. They had a piercing below the lip, sorta on the chin-area. Most people had earrings, but only kings could wear turquoise earrings. OHGURL LOOK AT MAH TURQUISE EARRINGS DON’T I LOOK FABULOUS~
Commoners wore shorter cloaks, which could only rise ABOVE THE ANKLE. NO LOWER THAN THE ANKLE. OR ELSE. Or else what? YOU MUST SHOW YOUR ANKLES, AND IF YOU DON’T THERE IS A PENALTY OF DEATH. Or was, at least. NO LONG CLOAKS FOR YOU. And they were made out of cactus fibers. Not the prickly fibers though! The ok-kind.
The slaves, the lowest class, wore the shortest and the most uncomfortable clothes. Men wore loin-cloths. You know what that is.
Also, hair was interesting. Single wome-

Single women worse her hair long and free. However, married women wore their hair up in two wrapped braids that ended at the side of her head.

So, we learned that human sacrifice was common, right? Right. Well, why did they preform it? Because they were under the belief that the sun would cease to shine if they didn’t. Sometimes Cannibalism was a part of their rituals. The priests who preformed said rituals were dark-robes and stunk of blood for obvious reasons, so they burned incense all the time.
Something very interesting is that they believed that death/sacrifice was necessary for their redemption, saving, and general life for all of humanity.

Monday, August 8, 2011


Kay, so we got Thomas Aquinas. We got Marco Polo. We got Roger Bacon. A Philosopher, a merchant, and a scholar. All pretty awsum peeps, amirite?
Well let’s add one more awsum peep.

His name was Dante, and he was a poet. But he didn’t have a very easy childhood, because his muhmmy died when he was real little.
But when he was nayn...
He met a girl :3
A pretty little girl.
So apparently they got separated or something. But when he was 18 he met her again, and he loved her. YAY. For years, Dante wrote about love for her and all that nice stuff.
But then Beatrice, the girl, went off and got married to someone else.
But then she died.
She was only 24.
He still wrote about his love for her, but he didn’t use her name. He wrote about her entrance into heaven, which I’m not going to put here because it’s really really long.
Her name was Gemma. They got married and had had children. Awwh :3
Dante was also a bit of a scholar. He also liked philosophy, but he found politics more interesting. He believed that the emperor should have more power than the pope, and this caused him to be exiled from his home, Italy :c
Later in his life, he wrote his most known work, The Divine Comedy. He wrote it based off the number 3 because of the Trinity of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

There are 3 parts, each having 33 cantos, which is the number of years Christ lived on earth. OHBOI U BETTER BELIEVE WE IN SOME DEEP STUFF.
Each canto had 3 lines, where every other line rhymes.
The actual content is basically a tour of the afterlife. Or at least how he believed the afterlife to be. The first part is called Dante’s Inferno, where he describes Hell in /gory/ detail. Yayyy~ :3 He went through nyan levels of a pit with a Roman poet named Virgil. Something kinda creepy is that he uses names of /real people/. He freely tells the world who he thinks will burn and is burning in the eternal flame that is Hell. WHAT A THOUGHTFUL GUY. He places the people of lesser evil in the “top” of Hell, and the ones of higher evil in the bottom middle heart-ish area. So now you get to know JUST HOW BAD Dante thinks you are! How wonderful!
Oh! He also wrote about seeing a few Popes down there! THE CHURCH MUST’A LOVED THAT.
The second part of the poem was called Purgatory. For those of you who don’t know, Purgatory is (supposedly) a place between Heaven and Hell where a Christian soul goes to have them cleansed of the sins that were still there. However, that is not Biblically sound. Now I don’t wanna go all theology in this lesson, but Christ died for all of our sins, not just some of them. Sooo you can’t really get your soul cleansed if it’s already clean, ya know? But you know what’s really funny? What’s really funny? Going up to these people who are all “OH C. S. LEWIS WAS SUCH A GOOD CHRISTIAN MAN AND AL THAT JAZZ AND HE WAS SUCH A STRONG CHIRSTIAN AND HE WAS SO GREAT AND-” “Hey, you know something about C. S. Lewis?” “YA WHAT?” “HE USED TO BE A SUPER-ATHEIST AND BELIEVED IN PURGATORY AFTER HE BECAME A CHRISTIAN.” “...”
I know, it’s mean, but sometimes it can be funny.

So like in Hell, there are nyan levels. He starts at the bottom and has to work his way to the top. This also is not Biblically sound, because one is saved by faith, not works.
The third part of his poem was called Paradisio, or paradise. This was Dante’s idea of Heaven, and guess who led him through Heaven? Beatrice :3 AWWW :D
So she led him through, you guessed it, nyan levels of heaven, each with increasing beauty and splendour and all that jayazz.
Anti-climatic amirite.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Sad + Anti-Climatic.

Scotland is like a hat. Have you ever seen a picture of England, and looked at it, and said, "Hmm. What a fashionable hat England is wearing." Because I sure have. Scotland is, without a doubt, England's fashionable hat. And Edward King of England looked up on this fashionable hat and said, "WHY ISN'T THIS MINE RAAAARGH." So he went up to his fashionable hat and said “I AM THE OVERLORD OF SCOTLAND.” to the king.
So this led to many years of battle between England and Scotland.
Sooo now Ed decided to say, “Oh, forget the king. Lets just get three men to rule over Scotland instead of that old guy.”
That didn’t go over to well.
Everybody hated this, especially Sir William Wallace. So he decided to raise an army of commoners.
Now when Ed heard about Wallace, he didn’t really care. Ohurdur how cute. LETS TEAR ‘EM TO PIECES.
So Ed sent the royal English army to head over there. And guess who won? William’s army won.
So Ed payed a lot more attention. He went back into the country (He wasn’t even there when he sent the army to tear William to pieces.) and watched. So he sent more army on ‘em, and the army won. /lesob
But the army didn’t get William. So he went into hiding, rallied up an army, and spent his life on the run. ON TEH LAM. He did that for about 7 years.
But the he got caught and was severely tortured and was executed for treason.
Well then.
After William was killed, there were other patriots. One of the most famous is Robert Bruce. He signed allegiance with the king of England. But then he sided with William and crowned himself king of Scotland. Uhm. Ok then. And he would’ve been killed, but he wasn’t found out. But in a battle with the English, he faked his death and decided to flee to the mountains in Ireland. Now this was not a cowardly move. He was plotting, scheming, and all that jayazz. So eventually, he came back to Scotland, and in about 2 years he had all of Scotland again. YAYZ :D
But then Bruce decided to get a little bit of England too. By this time, Ed I was dead. So Ed II was who Robert had to fight. So eventually Ed II died, so, you guessed it, ED II CAME ALONG. Who was a nice guy and decided to acknowledge Robert’s power and he let him be king of Scotland. King Robert I in 1328 :D
He only got to be king for a year D: He died after a year.
So that ended sadly and anti-climatically.

Monday, August 1, 2011


Remember a few posts ago? About the psychopath guy? WELL HE INVITED MARCO POLO OVER FOR TEA.
So everyone knows what Marco Polo is. You swim around in a pool and yell “MARCO!” And someone else yells “POLO!” and you catch them. But absolutely NOBODY knows /who/ Marco Polo was.
You see, he was born in Italy. Venice, to be exact. Venice is that city surrounded by water that you always see in movies, with the people in the boats and all the romanticness. And Marco was a trader merchant thing. Marco’s Dad and Uncle went to China and they loved it, so they went back to Venice and dragged Marco along with them for another trip in 1271. It 3 years for them to move from Venice to China.
So China is preeeety different from Italy. It has all sorts of different things, and they were shown to the Polos by Kublai Khan. Yeah. He liked Marco, Kublai did, and he made him a governor. Woahdood. But eventually, they all went back to Italy. But only 24 years later. So nobody recognized them, and nobody believed them about coming from China and all that. /lesob. So a few years later, Marco got caught in a sea battle. OHNOEZ D: But he was captured, and he shared a cabin with a Frenchman. He shared all his stories about China with him, and when the Frenchman and Marco were released, Rustichello the Frenchman (Pronounced Rusty Cello. TROLOLO) wrote down all the stories and got them published.
Soerm. That was rully anti-climatic. And short. Hmh.