Anne Lister (1791-1840) was born in Halifax Yorks and spent her childhood in her parents’ home. And she was a regular visitor to her aunt’s grand family estate Shibden Hall. Portrait of Anne Lister in her customary dark clothes,by Joshua Horner c1830, Shibden HallLister was not raised to be in busin­ess, but to be a wife.…

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After the crises of the Maritime Dispute in 1890, Shearers’ Dis­pute in 1891 and the Great Depression of early 1890s, many in Austral­ia’s work­­­ing class believed that their nation could never be a work­ingman’s parad­ise. Some were drawn to a utopian settlement in Paraguay. William Lane, c1892WikiBritish-born William Lane (1861–1917) was the popular editor of Bris­bane…

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Albert Bert Spencer (1886-) was born in Balmain Sydney, younger son of Henrik Henry Spencer, a Danish labourer and his wife Al­ice. The father died when Bert was a toddler, meaning the 3 sib­lings were raised by a struggling mother. Hill of Content bookshop, Bourke St MelbourneSpencer’s mot­h­er was the inspiration for all his endeav­ours, intro­d­ucing him…

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The Leviny house Buda, in Castlemaine bought and renovated in 1863Ernest Leviny (1818-1905) was a Hungarian and a citizen of the Austro Hungarian Empire. He moved from a small town to Budapest, to train as a silversmith and jeweller. In 1843 he lived in Paris developing his craft before moving to London where he set up a…

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Currently the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) has one of their worldwide working group meetings in Rovaniemi, the working group of environmental auditing (WGEA). At this meeting they have a specialised session on indigenous knowledge in auditing, to which they invited me as a keynote speaker. Not only was it hopefully a useful…

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Petrol in the UK was the first commodity to be rationed, although it was supplied for essential services eg doctors and farmers. When a North Atlantic blockade by German U-Boats stopped imported food, huge shortages were caused and by Jan 1940, the British government had to introduce food rationing. The scheme was designed to ensure fair shares for all…

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Welcoming back their surviving sons and brothers to Ballarat1919, Victorian Collections.Because dead soldiers were not repatriated to Australia from Europe during or after the Great War, the dead were had to be buried thousands of ks from their homes. The planting of a tree was a replace­ment funeral for families who could not provide a funeral for…

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Map of Normandy in France and Hastings in EnglandKhan AcademyConsider the issue of re-writing history over time, even when the original sources was well accepted. When reading Marco Polo’s writ­ing for example, despite it being of endless historical and literary value, historians have recognised mistakes, ex­ag­gerations and omissions. Now David Musgrove and Michael Lewis suggest…

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Prince Albert studying, Queen Victoria looking on1859The early C19th saw rapid indust­rial­isation & urbanisation in the UK. With it came a heap of related problems such as deficiencies in hous­ing, san­itation, public health and education. The dominant laissez-faire ideology suggested that unregulated market activity would ensure the welfare of all by providing the conditions for…

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The 100 Years' War (1337-1453) was horrendous. Endless battles contin­ued between English Plantagenets and French Valois, for control of Fren­ch soil. Late in the 100 Years War, English forces occupied much of northern France, including Normandy’s capital Rouen.Joan of Arc was a proficient horse riderand leader of the French soldiersMeridian Hill Park, Wash DCAt first,…

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Please note that this blog post has major spoilers for the video game Pentiment, which I highly recommend you play before reading further as its a fantastic game! In one part of the game, Andreas (the Player Character) has a discussion with Sister Illuminata regarding various books – depicted here with both characters inserted into…

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The High Tide of Immigration - A National Menace by Louis Dalrymple in Judge magazine, Aug 1903 The term eugenics came from English scientist Sir Francis Galton. In Hereditary Gen­ius (1869), Galton advocated a sel­ective breeding programme in humans, to ensure that quality genes were passed down. His theories inspired prominent US biologist Charles Davenport to es­t­ablish the Eugenics…

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Alexander Watson wrote that in 1418, Zurich’s wealthy burghers were startled by the sudden appearance of foreigners camping outside the city's walls. The new arrivals were, according to a later chronicler, strange and never before seen there. Although their clothes were ragged, they paid for their own food and wore much gold jewell­ery. People be­liev­ed them…

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I am writing a long series on human evolution and the development of human culture. This text is translated from the closing speech of its first season. The title is from the song ”Juokse sinä humma” – ”Run my little horse” by the famous Finnish singer-songwriter Tapio Rautavaara. You can decide for yourself whether this…

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On 13 July 2023 the British Library will host the 5th Annual Graham Nattrass Lecture, co-organised with the German Studies Library Group. The theme of this year’s lecture, to be given by Dr Alexandra Lloyd of Oxford University, is the anti-Nazi resistance group Die Weisse Rose (The White Rose); 2023...

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Note: This blog post is adapted from an abandoned journal paper that I originally wrote in 2021. Can you guess which museum’s archival collections might be depicted here? Introduction From the perspective of many people from marginalised backgrounds and historically looted communities, the museum continues to be a symbol of colonialism. Despite renewed calls for…

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Guest post by Laurentius Alvin Laurentis Alvin is a Master’s student at Bonn University in Germany (Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität). They hold a BA in history of art and musicology. Their academic […]

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