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The Paradise Book

Bologna is a city in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy which, as with much of Italy, is full of points of historical interest. For better or worse the city is often overlooked by the millions of tourists that flock to Italy every year, however, this should not detract from Bologna’s importance. The city is home […]

Yamada Nagamasa: A 17th century adventurer, pirate and merchant.

Note: Yamada is the family name and Nagamasa is the given name following the Japanese naming system. Japan in the 16th and 17th century is often portrayed as a nation closed off to the world. However, the process of seclusion did not happen over night but rather over several years. Even during Japan’s 250 years […]

The Misfortune of the Last Saxon King

In England all school children learn of the Norman conquest of 1066. The story is of a war between three claimants to the English throne: Earl Harold Godwinsson of Wessex, Duke William the Bastard (later known as the Conqueror) of Normandy, and King Harald Hardrada of Norway. The King of England, Edward the Confessor died […]

The Man Who Ate Everything

Today there is a high social focus on healthy eating. Television is flooded with programmes detailing various peoples eating disorders from anorexia through to people too fat to leave the bed. However, in 18th century France there was a man who could put both ends of the spectrum to shame for this man was apparently […]