The English word “bank” comes from the Italian word “banco.” In late medieval Italy banks were family businesses consisting of a single large room with a counter, or “banco,” in the middle to separate customers from clerks and bookkeepers.


"Mona Lisa is the only beauty who went through history and retained her reputation. "

Will Rogers, an American stage and film actor, vaudeville performer, cowboy, humorist, newspaper columnist, and social commentator. In the mid-1930s he was hugely popular as a wit and a film star, commanding some of Hollywood's highest fees. Rogers was also a Cherokee citizen born in 1879 in the Cherokee Nation, Indian Territory. It is today Oklahoma.

Although the Mamluks were famously slave-soldiers who took over Egypt, you might not know they actually remained "slaves" even after seizing power. Slaves were taken, then raised in state barracks and trained according to their aptitude (soldiers, bureaucrats, administrators). Those positions were not available to the general public, as the state-raised slaves were seen as having no loyalty to their families, only the state. They were legally emancipated upon reaching the age of majority.

What The Ell?

"Ell" is a unit of measurement based on the Old English word for "arm." The unit was the length of a forearm, usually 45 inches or 1.143 m. It has fallen out of use, as have many other units of measurement based on arms:

  • digit (1/60 ell)
  • finger (7/360 ell)
  • palm (1/15 ell)
  • hand (4/45 ell)
  • shaftment (2/15 ell)
  • span (1/5 ell)
  • cubit (2/5 ell)

In The 1400s, The Grand Duchy of Lithuania Was The Largest State In Europe

That's its former extent, in green, over the modern borders.

Bronze statue of Guan Yu, a general serving under the warlord Liu Bei during the late Eastern Han dynasty of China. After he died in 220 CE his deeds entered popular folklore. Guan Yu was deified as early as the Sui Dynasty (581–618 CE) and also became considered a bodhisattva. Today he is god of war, loyalty, and righteousness. This bronze statue dates to the Ming Dynasty, 1400s - 1500s CE.

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    HISTORICAL NON-FICTION

    By Lillian Audette

    This blog is a collection of the interesting, the weird, and sometimes the need-to-know about history, culled from around the internet. It has pictures, it has quotes, it occasionally has my own opinions on things. If you want to know more about anything posted, follow the link at the "source" on the bottom of each post. And if you really like my work, buy me a coffee or become a patron!

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