Plato said “He was a wise man who invented beer.” But he was mistaken. The inventor of beer was not a man, but a women. Or, to be more precise, a group of women.
So now we know that, at least in Macbeth, the witches are scary women. Great. The three scary women feature everywhere in history. Why are we so afraid of them?
In its journey zigzagging between tradition and geography, ice cream has grown from a dessert for the powerful elite to a street food that everybody enjoys and consumes all year … Continue reading The Ancient History of Ice Cream
Former president of the United States Ronald Reagan (1911 – 2004) allegedly once said, “Someone once said that politics is the second-oldest profession. I’m beginning to think it bears resemblance to the first”, unfavorably comparing politicians to prostitutes. But despite the old adage, prostitution is not “the oldest profession in the world”. It’s gardening.
Sortition by lot was a form of selecting public officials in some ancient Greek city-states. It has been used particularly in the democracy of ancient Athens from which most information … Continue reading Very Short Story about Voting in Ancient Greek and Rome
An election is a messy process and something that we have tried to get right for thousands of years. We may not realize this, but our politicians have been using the same election techniques for 2000 years.
In the 6th Century BCE, an Indian physician named Sushruta, who was widely regarded in India as the “father of surgery”, wrote one of the world’s earliest works on medicine … Continue reading Scar Removals and Breast Reductions: Graeco-Roman Practices of Plastic Surgery
For centuries, rice has been a staple diet and plays an important role in Asian culture. Although rice farmers have found their lives to become more difficult due to climate … Continue reading Dewi Sri, Nang Khosop and the Bountiful Body of a Goddess
Semar is probably one of the oldest characters in Indonesian mythology who was not derived from Hindu mythology. He was made famous by performances of Wayang (Shadow Puppets) in the … Continue reading The Fallen God and the Power of Humility
In Asian mythology, just before the Lunar New Year, the kitchen gods would go to Heaven to report to the Heavenly Emperor on his family’s activities during the year. In … Continue reading The Kitchen in Asian Mythology
The proverb of cleanliness being “next to godliness” is popularly credited to John Wesley’s 1778 sermon. But it also came from writings in the Talmud. Washing oneself in clear water before paying homage to the gods and deities became part of the ceremonies in many ancient religions.
The vision of heavily armed men has become so heavily associated with the art of war that at this point it has become a cliché. So much so that, despite … Continue reading Ancient Ladies of War