Monday, July 11, 2016

Through History With the New Monday Quiz: the 1350s

Compared with the 1340s, the 1350s was a pretty great time to be a human on Earth!  If you were still alive, that is. Experiences varied from individual to individual, naturally.

1. In 1351, Zürich signed on. Glarus and Zug joined in 1352. Bern came on board in 1353. What was growing so rapidly in the early 1350s?

2. In the early 1350s, the amazing traveler Ibn Battuta passed through Timbuktu – then just a minor city – on his way back from visiting the capital city of Mansa Suleyman in the Niger River valley. Of what empire was Mansa Suleyman the ruler?

3. After his monastery was destroyed, Zhu Yuanzhang joined the Red Turban rebellion in 1352. By 1356, he led the army that conquered and occupied Nanjing. This happened in what country -- and against a government still controlled by what group?

4. In 1352, supporting one faction of a Byzantine civil war, they defeated a Serbian army that was supporting the other. In 1354, they seized two cities from the Byzantines. In 1355, they defeated the Bulgarian Empire at the Battle of Ihtiman. Which empire was so successful in the 1350s?

5. In 1353, a book was published in which ten young people leave a plague-stricken city and tell each other stories to pass the time. In it,
...various tales of love... range from the erotic to the tragic. Tales of wit, practical jokes, and life lessons contribute to the mosaic. In addition to its literary value and widespread influence (for example on Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales), it provides a document of life at the time. Written in the vernacular of the Florentine language, it is considered a masterpiece of classical early Italian prose.
It's pretty good. Name that book!

6. On April 5, 1355, Charles IV was crowned emperor in Rome. Emperor of what?

7. Game of Thrones, 1350s edition:
The situation became worse as the years passed and the aging Afonso lost control over his court. His grandson and [Prince] Pedro's only legitimate son, future king [Fernando], was a sickly child, while the illegitimate children [of Pedro’s mistress, Inês de Castro], thrived. Worried about his legitimate grandson's life, and the growing power of Castile within [his country], Afonso ordered Inês de Castro first imprisoned in his mother's old convent in Coimbra, and then murdered in 1355. He expected his son to give in and marry a princess, but the heir became enraged upon learning of his lover's decapitation in front of their young child. Pedro put himself at the head of an army and devastated the country between the Douro and the Minho rivers before he was reconciled to his father in early 1357. Afonso died almost immediately after....
Tough family relations in the royal house of what country?

8. An odd organization was formally founded in the city of Lübeck in 1356, although it had been in the works for a couple of centuries. It's a little hard to describe, because there hasn't been much else quite like it:
[It] was created to protect the guilds' economic interests and diplomatic privileges in their affiliated cities and countries, as well as along the trade routes the merchants visited. [Its] cities had their own legal system and furnished their own armies for mutual protection and aid. Despite this, the organization was not a state, nor can it be called a confederation of city-states; only a very small number of the cities within [it] enjoyed autonomy and liberties comparable to those of a free imperial city.
And yet it was one of the great powers of late medieval Europe. What was it?

9. This famous piece of cloth was first publicly displayed in 1357. People still argue about what it is, and if it’s what it’s claimed to be. Name that famous piece of cloth!

10. Meanwhile, in Australia, a reasonable estimate of the human population in the 1350s would be:
a) perhaps 85,000 (about the population of the Isle of Man today)
b) perhaps 600,000 (about the population of Luxembourg today)
c) perhaps 7,000,000 (about the population of Bulgaria today)
d) perhaps 25,000,000 (about the population of Australia today)
e) perhaps 325,000,000 (about the population of the United States today)

Through History with The New Monday Quiz: the 1340s

1. "Cahokia, Kincaid and Moundvill" -- Towns along the Mississippi River
2. "The Battle of Sluys" -- England wins huge naval superiority at the outset of The Hundred Years War, then squanders its.
3. what particular cultural imposition did the Estonians resent? -- Christianity.  The Livonians were Crusaders, and therefore a bit pushy with the door-to-door proselization.
4. Bahmani was one of the big medieval kingdoms of India.
5. About half of Europe dying: The Black Death.
6. "certain tumours in the groin or armpits" -- The Black Death.
7. Jewish communities put to slaughter -- they were being scapegoated for the Black Death.
8. Charles University is in Prague.
9. The Flagellents were wandering groups of religious beggers who beat and scourged themselves to atone for their own sinful nature and that of all humankind.  Their numbers exploded during the years of the Black Death, when there was a lot of social dislocation and everyone was scared shitless and, hell, nothing else seemed to be working, so why not?
10. The Colosseum was damaged in the 1349 earthquake, giving it a real head start for when people starting digging on romantic ruins four centuries later.

I was pretty wowed when DrSchnell was all like BOOM!  10 of 10!  Then came Susan, with 9 1/2, and pfly closing with another 10/10.  Whoa.  I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I wouldn't want to be on Jeopardy against this crowd.  Well, actually I would, but my odds wouldn't be very good.


Christine M. said...

1. the Swiss Confederation
2. Mali?
3. Um, Mongols?
4. dunno. So may to choose from.
5. The Decameron. Read it!
6. The Holy Roman Empire
7. Aragon
8. Hanseatic League
9. Shroud of Turin
10. I'll guess C

Anonymous said...

1 - The Swiss Confederation -- I have an advantage as I lived in Bern when I was age 8-9. At that time I knew the names of all the cantons.
2 - Ethiopia
3 - China
4 -
5 - The Decameron
6 - The Holy Roman Empire
7 - Portugal
8 - The Hanseatic League
9 - The Shroud of Turin
10 - b

Nichim said...

1. The future Switzerland
2. What about Mali?
3. China, china, I don't know anything about China
4. The Ottomans?
5. I don't know but I would like to read it. I liked The Canterbury Tales.
6. The Holy Roman Empire? Was that a thing yet?
7. Sounds like Spain.
8. I really want to know!
9. The Shroud of Turin. Proportedly left behind by zombie Jesus
10. I'm going with c.