If you’ve come across my blog, you will have probably noticed that I have a regular history section on the account. At time of writing, all that seems to encompass is really really ancient history, many millions of years before George Washington gloriously founded the beacon of freedom known as America to bring light to the dark world. Surely history starts with the Boston Tea Party? And also, what is the point of all this?
My aim with my history section on my blog (titled with the misnomer of ‘History Of A Nation’) is to write an informative post, written in a lighthearted and non-academic way, about every (major) geopolitical entity to have existed, with the more important and long-lived ones split into many many parts to ensure that I can cover everything I feel I need to in history at some point during this project.
We have started at the beginning of civilisation, with the earliest Sumerian writing systems, hence my first post was on Ancient Sumer and Gilgamesh and everything that entails. We then move forward in rough chronological order from when states are founded, and at time of writing are still larking about in the BC era and as major states become more numerous, I’m going to slow down even more. Obviously not all states last the same amount of time, many have disputed founding dates, I may at some point find myself riding on a theme (not a Byzantine theme) and favour related states over strict chronological order so the order is more of a guideline than anything else. As for what to include and exclude, I exclude states where we know so little there’s nothing for me to say about them, mainly minor city states and ancient states that we only know from a few records that a better preserved kingdom had about trading with them. Anything major will be covered though. States that aren’t independent may be covered if they had a major part to play.
I can touch upon states that mostly have myths and unsubstantiated theories written about them, I feel some of my best articles, the one on the Xia dynasty for example, have turned out that way as it’s a lot easier to write in an entertaining way about those that obviously have historical contradictions and I do try and suggest likely historical outcomes that more serious scholars do not mention because it isn’t academic to offer unsubstantiated speculation. I quite often offer unsubstantiated speculation. The choice is then on you to make up your own mind. Also, if you’re an archaeologist, I’m not that kind to your lot, in a lighthearted way of course. Read the more archaeological articles at your peril.
Additionally, I don’t consider this a closed project, I may leave the older articles in my archive to gather internet dust but that doesn’t mean they can never be edited. Therefore if you read one and think there is something missing or want to correct a mistake or just want to lecture me about my academic slovenliness (I do use references sometimes but normally only if I own the book or happen to find a copy online), please drop me a message on Twitter or by e-mail and I’ll consider amending the older article based on your new information. In fact, I encourage that.
The point of all this is mostly for myself, hence why I will continue no matter what the views are on this, I want to spend my life at least in part dedicated to finding out as much about history as possible and writing these down helps to put the facts in my head as well as practicing my writing skills. It helps increase my knowledge base, even if I didn’t know what was there before, I will do after I publish the article. I’m fairly open about using Wikipedia as my primary source of information, although I don’t like using it as my only source and I will always try and avoid dry copy-pasting sentences from there because there’s no point to that.
If you’re still interested, please follow this link, search the country you’re interested in, as long as it started existing before the date of my most recently published party, and have fun reading!