Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Trying to wedge historical context...

into a tiny, aging brain.

So, while the Peloponnesian War was being waged, and miswaged, with all of the drama, and intrigue, and sex of an HBO Series
(Spartan military pederasty makes Oz look like Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood)...
what else was going on?

(image from Wikipedia)

The Jews had rebuilt the Temple in Jerusalem. (Sad story)

The Nanda Empire was the regional hegemon in India.

In China, it was the Warring States period. The reforms of Lord Shang were still a few decades away... here's an extra credit project. Was Lord Shang the original incarnation of Josef Stalin? During the NEP, I mean? Discuss, including references to Pol Pot, the Cultural Revolution and the Jacobite Terror.

In Mexico, the Olmec teetered on the edge of collapse...

the Celts were running Western Europe, the Scythians were running Eastern Europe and Central Asia (Ateus had just taken the throne of the Second Scythian Kingdom), the Balts had made the East Coast of the Baltic into their homeland, proto-Slavs (the Neuri?) were east of them...

North America had the Adena culture in the midwest, and Pueblo culture further west.

It was the Patrician era of the Roman Republic, Carthage and Syracuse dominated the Western Mediterranean, the Nok were present in Nigeria (and I can't find anything out about them *snarl*), The Kushites maintained a wealthy Kingdom in Sudan, southeast of them the kingdom of Axum must already have been founded...

the big boy on the block was the Persian Empire. Despite having been driven off from Greece twice, it was still overwhelmingly the largest, most powerful Empire on Earth until that time. It would remain so for another two generations, until Alexander conquered it. It stretched from Turkey to the Indus, and included Egypt.

You can see why I use the term "wedge". I've got two short things to read next, one book on the construction of ethnicity (I WILL get to the bottom of this tribe thing), and then a 1500 year digression to the Epic of Gilgamesh.

I'm not looking forward to that, even marginally. My memory of it is that it's unreadable. Not at all a potential HBO series.