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Archive for August, 2008

On the advice of a listener, I have enrolled in the Amazon Associates program. What this does is allow me to recommend items available on Amazon.com to listeners via this blog, and when those items are purchased through the link I provide, the show receives a certain commission from the sale. I think it’s a great way to interact with listeners and everyone wins in such an exchange. Of course, I will usually be recommending books, but films, music, and other items will appear from time to time as well.

With that said, my first recommendation to you is Who Murdered Chaucer? by Terry Jones (of Monty Python fame). This was actually used as a textbook in a medieval literature course that I recently took, and I enjoyed it immensely. It’s very readable, at times humorous, and incredibly insightful. It receives British History 101’s hearty recommendation. The problem is…I can’t get the HTML link provided by Amazon to work. Is anyone out there familiar with WordPress who may be able to help me?

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A lovely day

I checked the British History 101 PO box yesterday and was delighted to find a package from Amazon.com. I opened it up to find a few goodies from a loyal listener of the podcast (I apologize for the maddening “Search inside!” blurb atop each cover):

Confessions of St. Augustine, translated by Garry Wills

Confessions of St. Augustine, translated by Garry Wills

Life of Johnson, by (James) Boswell

Life of Johnson, by (James) Boswell

Great Tales from English History, by Robert Lacey

Great Tales from English History, by Robert Lacey

Thanks so very much, Robert! I can’t wait to dive into all of these.

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A new project

I’ve been working on this here and there on my own for a while now, but now I want to open something up to the listeners of British History 101.

It’s been fascinating to see all the tools one can utilize from Google, and I’m particularly interested in the Google calendar for our purposes here at British History 101. What I’ve done is place events in British history on a Google calendar on the date they occured with the year immediately following. The events are set to recur yearly, so they will automatically renew themselves as time goes on. The days of the week won’t be accurate, but at least we can attach a day, month, and year to the event. I’m told one can access the calendar through any one of these three addresses:

XML link to calendar

ICAL link to calendar

HTML link to calendar

I’m not completely sure how any of that works, so please let me know if you have any problems with it.

Here’s where you become involved. I’m fairly sure that those links point to a read-only calendar; that is, only I can actually add or delete events. What I’d like is to get listener submissions (LOTS!) of historical events for me to add to it and we can see it grow over time and refer back to continuously. I wish listeners could add events directly, but for the time being this will have to suffice. If you’d like to submit a date, send me an email at BritishHistory101@gmail.com with “Calendar” as the subject line. Make sure you include the title of the event along with day, month, and year. I’d prefer some sort of description of the event, and another preference would be that the description come from some reliable, published source (properly referenced, of course). Let’s see if this is a project British History 101 listeners are interested in!

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This from the BBC:

BBC

Susan Jones, 28, practicing her skill. Source: BBC

“She said the sport, including archery from the saddle, sword games and throwing spears, was not as dangerous as it might look…But the key to mastering skill-at-arms, said Ms Jones, is the mount. Trainee knights need to able to move naturally with horse before they can start wielding weaponry with safety and accuracy. She said: ‘The horse is paramount. It’s what we care about the most. It’s absolutely vital that nothing happens to them. ‘It would have been import[ant] at the time. A really good joust horse would be like Ferrari to them.’ “

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