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Search tags: 17th-century-europe
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url 2018-11-16 10:06
AoL books and courses Freebie Fridays FREE TODAY
Art of 4 Elements - Nataša Pantović Nuit
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Spiritual Symbols: With their Meanings (Alchemy of love mindfulness training) (Volume 8) - Nataša Pantović Nuit

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Source: www.artof4elements.com/entry/196/mindfulness-training-books-promotions
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review 2018-08-29 17:47
Podcast #116 is up!
A Business of State: Commerce, Politics, and the Birth of the East India Company - Rupali Mishra

My latest podcast is up on the New Books Network website! In it I interview Rupali Mishra about her study of the governance of the East India Company and its relationship to the English state. Enjoy!

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url 2017-11-09 10:40
17th century witch hunts in Europe
A-Ma Alchemy of Love - Nataša Pantović Nuit

Witch Hunts in Europe

How religious fanatics declared War against Women 300 years ago

Remembering the Horror of the 17th Century Witch Burning Times

 

While writing Ama my Historical Fiction Book, set in the 17th century China my research took me into this most interesting of times in Europe, the time of the Witch Hunts, when men of reason seamed to be prosecuted and singled out for their sanity.

 

Malleus Maleficarum

“the  Witches' Hammer became the bestseller, the hit among different classes, and was passed from hand to hand, read aloud in Churches, and on the village squares, stored in special places, with the Bible, consulted in the dark corridors of the torture chambers. The best Hunters would know it by heart, reciting it as a deepest wisdom against poor women. Printed, reprinted and translated into German, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, English, Portuguese, it outsold all other books except the Bible!” (quote from Ama Alchemy of Love by Nataša Pantovič Nuit)

Witch Hunts in Europe

 

Source: www.artof4elements.com/entry/202/witch-hunts-in-europe
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review 2017-07-26 08:42
Reshaping the environment to suit our needs
The Draining of the Fens: Projectors, Popular Politics, and State Building in Early Modern England (Johns Hopkins Studies in the History of Technology) - Eric H. Ash

Today The Fens is largely a misnomer, as the region of East Anglia is a flat, dry land studded with farms. Yet a few centuries ago it was a name that referred to the marshland environment of the area, one often inundated with water from the sea or from the rivers that fed into it. While these conditions was hardly conducive for growing crops, the grasses that flourished in the wetlands were ideal for animal husbandry, which was practiced as far back as the Roman occupation. During the 17th century, however, a number of parties began a decades-long project to drain The Fens that turned it into the environment which we know it as today.

 

Eric Ash's book describes how this occurred. He traces the beginnings of the project to the 1570s, when environmental changes that worsened the flooding convinced some in the royal government of the need to intervene. Until then flood management was the responsibility of sewer commissioners, prominent locals who sat on boards that were empowered to maintain flood control measures but whose resources and remit were limited to maintaining existing conditions. Now, however, the crown began to consider ambitious projects designed to drain The Fens and convert the pasture land to more desirable farmland.

 

The inhabitants of the Fens quickly objected to the government's proposal. Ash spends a good part of his book describing the various challenges to the projectors, which included political pressure, legal challenges, and even violence against the "projectors" and their employees. While efforts by the crown to secure a consensus proved elusive, it was not until first James I and then Charles I took the throne that the state grew more aggressive in its approach. Nevertheless, one of the virtues of the area of the first major drainage project, the Hatfield Level, was that the crown controlled most of the land in the area, thus forestalling much of the opposition encountered elsewhere. Work on the even larger Great Level drainage began soon afterward, and while it was disrupted by the civil war that broke out in 1641, the work continued intermittently until it was complete by the 1670s.

 

Synthesizing political, social, technological, and environmental history, Ash's book provides an excellent account of the efforts to drain The Fens in the 16th and 17th centuries. From it emerges an account of greed, environmental change, government power, and local resistance that has echoes in some of the debates over public projects and environmental regulation in our own time. Perhaps the most salient point to emerge from the book is how the efforts by people to utilize and shape their environment have long reflected their views of their relationship to it. This is true even today, for while the ongoing effort to restore The Fens embodies a very different set of assumptions and goals, they share with the drainage projects of the 17th century the idea that it is our goals which should determine its condition, even if our objectives today have brought us full circle to embracing the wetlands role The Fens had served for so long in the past.

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review 2013-08-17 00:00
A fantastic history of a complex war
The Thirty Year's War: Europe's Tragedy - Peter H. Wilson

Peter Wilson's book is about more than the war that consumed central Europe in the 17th century. To adequately explain the factors that led up to it and influenced its outcome, he describes the context of politics and government in the Holy Roman Empire. This vast, unwieldy, and yet surprisingly effective institution was at the center of the struggle, as Protestants and Catholics struggle to coexist within it in the years following the Peace of Augsburg in 1555. Fragile as it was, this peace was strained by the efforts of successive Habsburg emperors to strengthen their power within the empire, an effort that fueled Protestant anxieties that the Habsburgs would use this power to advance the Catholic faith at their expense.

Yet Wilson makes a persuasive argument that the war was more about politics than religion. Though confessional issues sparked the initial outbreak, the war often led to cross-confessional alliances that set co-religionists against each other. Here Wilson builds upon his extensive discussion of prewar politics to highlight the dynastic ambitions of people like Frederick V of Palatine and Maximilian of Bavaria and their efforts to use the war to advance their interests. Nobody exemplified this better than Gustavus Adolphus, the Swedish king whose intervention reversed the string of Imperial victories. Though his death deprived the rebels of their greatest leader, the war dragged on thanks to the support provided by the French, whose rise to European dominance coincided with the conflict.

All of this is described in an elaborate narrative designed to give the reader an understanding of the factors at work in the conflict and how the war turned out the way it did. The text is dense with the names of people and locations, yet this helps convey the considerable complexity of events. Simply put, this is the best history of the war available, and with remain the definitive source for anyone interested in the conflict for years to come.

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