Category Archives: history

Ancient Aliens vs. Good, Hard Work

While recovering from recent illness and exhaustion (and under duress by another family member) I wound up watching a couple of episodes of a program designed to convince us that many of the great ancient monuments of the world were … Continue reading

Posted in essays, history, medieval technology, technology | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Defense Against the Dark Arts: Warding off Witchcraft

This month’s Archaeology magazine has some photos from Knole House in Kent showing a series of hatch marks carved into the floor beneath where the protestant King James I would have slept in the early 1600’s.  The marks are intended … Continue reading

Posted in fantasy, historical medicine, history, magic, medieval, religion, witchcraft | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Arisia Convention and Interstitial Genders

If you have attended a science fiction and fantasy convention lately, especially here on the East Coast, you may have notice a fair number of people wearing pronoun ribbons.  Badge ribbons in general have been quite the rage, usually advertising … Continue reading

Posted in conventions, essays, history | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

The Year of the (dead) Goat: astrology and inner Asian sports

Chinese Astrology follows a twelve-year cycle of animals who represent the character of the year ahead, and may have an influence over individuals, based on their own astrological animal, (and all kinds of other factors).  The Wall Street Journal welcomed … Continue reading

Posted in essays, history, Mongolia, research | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Bones of the Magi

In my Dark Apostle series about medieval medicine and magic, my secret society of witches refers to themselves as “Magi,” (singular:  magus)  from the Persian word for one with knowledge of Oriental magic and astrology (according to my OED).  Interestingly, … Continue reading

Posted in history, magic, medieval, relics, religion, research, The Dark Apostle | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

When Astrology and Astronomy were One

One of the areas I did not delve deeply into for the Dark Apostle books was that of astrology. Certainly much of the educated medicine of the 14th century (and for a long time before and after) began with knowing … Continue reading

Posted in Elisha Barber, historical medicine, history, medieval, research, The Dark Apostle | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Technology in Medieval Fantasy, thanks to Steampunk

I have just returned from the World Fantasy Convention, held this year in Arlington, VA, where I got to hang out with many other authors and readers, sharing our knowledge and celebrating the realm of fantasy writing. One of my … Continue reading

Posted in conventions, fantasy, fiction, history, medieval, medieval technology, research, technology | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment