Created for the discussion of history – mostly English history until the Glorious Revolution and all with (or without) a Samuel Pepys obsession.
Credit for the idea to JPR’er dorkzilla!
Not a historian, but I love the subject and am trying to fill the many gaps in my knowledge from our standard Eurocentric history curricula.
Just finishing up “Pirates of Barbary” by Adrian Tinniswood. IMHO it is critical to know the history of this era to fully understand the dynamics of today’s Europe/North Africa/Middle East relations.
Did you know that 1 million or more Europeans were enslaved by the Muslim states of North Africa at the same time that millions of Africans were being sent to slavery in the New World? There were slave raids as far north as England and Ireland, but the bulk of slaves were taken from ships captured in the Mediterranean by the Barbary city-states of North Africa. The number of ships attacked was so high that European nations set loose their own fleets of ships, including European pirate ships.
In fact, the high bribes and ransom fees imposed by the Barbary States led to the first two international wars fought by the U.S. The Barbary Wars seem not to be taught frequently in U.S.history classes or mentioned anywhere except for the words of the Marines’ Hymn (From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli…) .
We hear a lot of simplistic analyses of the current problems in the Middle East that rightfully condemn European imperialism, but rarely delve into the centuries of attacks on Europe from the Islamic World.
Anyway, glad to be a part of this group and looking forward to having more of those pesky gaps in my knowledge filled!Enthusiast, Idaho progressive, daleanime and 5 othersArctic Dave, melurkyoulongtime, elleng, DookDook, Haikugal like this
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