Monday, March 7, 2016
Through History with The New Monday Quiz: the 1230s
If you ever get that time machine worked out? Don't start with the 1230s.
1. Sometime around 1230, a collection of irreverent poems and songs was written down; in the twentieth century, selections from this anthology would be scored for chorus and orchestra by Carl Orff. What was the book called?
2. It “was created to combat the heretical Cathars and Waldenses,” and to “bring order and legality to the process of dealing with heresy, since there had been tendencies in the mobs of townspeople to burn alleged heretics without much of a trial.” Pope Gregory IX's original intent… “was [for] a court of exception to... glean the beliefs of those differing from Catholic teaching, and to instruct them in the orthodox doctrine.”
What was thus founded in 1231?
3. In 1231, the first of a series of invasions that would last for 28 years, “at tremendous cost to civilian lives,” swept into Goryeo, the medieval kingdom in what is now Korea. Who were these devastating invaders from the north?
4. The Constitutions of Melfi, or Liber Augustalis, were a new set of laws that Emperor Frederick II put into effect in 1231. It’s "the birth certificate of the modern administrative state," or at least one big-shot historian thought so. Of what kingdom (shown on this map) would the Constitutions be the law of the land for the next six centuries?
5. In or around 1235, a Mandika leader named Sundiata Keita defeated the Sosso at the Battle of Kirina, and began expanding his kingdom among the fragments of the former Empire of Ghana. What was the name of this new empire?
6. In the second half of the decade, the heartland of what is now Russia was quickly overrun by a vastly superior military force from the east. Who conquered the ‘Rus in the 1230s?
7. ...and of course, conquests often bring nasty secondary problems along with them. The conquest of the ‘Rus brought with it a huge outbreak of rinderpest. Rinderpest – which had already been around for thousands of years – would continue to a periodic problem until the end of the twentieth century. Apparently, it’s gone now. What was it?
8. Baldwin II of the Latin Empire governed “little more than” a single city. “His financial situation was desperate, and his life was chiefly occupied in begging at European courts…. In 1237, Baldwin II pawned the Crown of Thorns to a Venetian merchant for 13,134 gold pieces.”
What was the Latin Empire?
9. In 1238, the Kingdom of Sukhothai became independent of the Khmer Empire. Under Kings Pho Khun Ban Muang and his brother Ram Khamhaeng, Sukhothai expanded into a regional power, and it would last nearly three and a half centuries, until 1583. What modern country claims Sukhothai as one of its ancestor states?
10. Also in 1238, Thowadra Monastery (pictured here) was founded. It’s at an elevation of 11,200 feet. That seems pretty high up, but then Thimphu, the capital of the country in which Thowadra is located, sits at over 7500 feet. Name that country!
Through History with The New Monday Quiz: the 1220s
1. Trial by ordeal was... well, let's get a good Wiki definition: Trial by ordeal was an ancient judicial practice by which the guilt or innocence of the accused was determined by subjecting them to an unpleasant, usually dangerous experience. Classically, the test was one of life or death and the proof of innocence was survival. ...trial by ordeal was considered a judicium Dei: a procedure based on the premise that God would help the innocent by performing a miracle on their behalf.
2. Ljubljiana is the capital of Slovenia.
3. Mayapan waxed as Chichen Itza waned in the declining years of the Maya.
4. Merv was put to the slaughter by the Mongols under Tuloi, fourth son of Genghis Kahn.
5. The Golden Bull of Hungary probably has roots in the British Magna Carta.
6. That there is the banner of Scotland.
7. A stigmatic is someone who bleeds from their palms or wrists, perhaps their feet, and perhaps their sides, in a perhaps miraculous, perhaps sympathetic, and certainly at least occasionally fraudulent imitation of the scriptural wounds of Christ.
8. The Kingdom of the Isles was the islands to the west and north of Scotland, including at its greatest extent the Isle of Man.
9. Lý Chiêu Hoàng technically ruled Vietnam.
10. After their double dealing was uncovered, the Teutonic Knights were not put to slaughter. Military orders are tough to put to slaughter. They were rather expelled from Hungary and headed up to the Baltic to take part in the tail end of the Crusading action up there, eventually becoming more or less the nucleus of what would become Prussia, which would in turn eventually become the tail that wagged the dog of German unification. Hey, I don't claim to be an expert on German history either.
I offer my respect and 100 Mervien slaves apiece to Morgan, Sarah, DrSchnell, pfly, Susan, and the Unwise Owl, the largest crop of people ever to show their work on the Monday Quiz in this format. I offer only my respect to the at least equally large army of readers whom I know read the quiz in the privacy of their own thoughts.