jump to navigation
  • Death by Carpet October 19, 2017

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Medieval
    Death by Carpet

      Beach has been worrying for a while about  the death of the last Abbasid Caliph in February 1258. The man in question, al-Musta’sim-Billah Abu-Ahmad Abdullah bin al-Mustansir-Billah had had the misfortune, fifteen years into his reign, to be confronted with a massive Mongol invasion under Hulegu. Al-Musta’sim-Billah was not a particularly martial sort and […]

    Mongolian Ear Cutting September 24, 2017

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Medieval
    Mongolian Ear Cutting

    If you are going to carry out massacres then it is important to be able to count how many soldiers (and all too often civilians) that you are killing. From scalping in the American west to the Einsatzgruppen tally sheets on the Eastern Front in the Second World War military organizations have come up with all […]

    The Babel of History May 2, 2012

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Ancient, Contemporary, Medieval, Modern
    The Babel of History

      The past according to a much worn-line is ‘a foreign country, they do things differently there’. Of course, if this were all then history would be a doddle. It would be enough to fill the Cutty Sark with sabres and give the natives music sheets for their acres. But, unfortunately for those who like […]

    Throne Room Tricks January 15, 2012

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Medieval
    Throne Room Tricks

    Beachcombing previously had some fun describing the tricks the ‘civilised’ use to frighten ‘savages’ in jungles and deserts far from the capital cities of Europe. But what about – today’s subject – the tricks that the civilised used when ‘savages’ came to visit them on home ground. Take, for example, the shenanigans found in the […]