American Brutus: How Lincoln’s Murder Revealed A Spectacular Killer

Walking into the Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C. is like taking a visceral journey into the past. Not only does it perfectly capture the nostalgia of the 19th century—when the United States was in the midst of grave political dissension—but it remains the backdrop of one of the most infamous moments in American history, the…

From Slave To Terrorist: How One Wicked Privateer Prevailed

Who was Francois L’Olonnais, you ask? He was not only a real, living historical figure, but he was also the most ruthless and fearsome pirate to ever sail under the black flag. And given the overall brutality of 17th-century life on the high seas, that is one hell of a claim. Born in France and sold into indentured…

How The Black Death of 1348 Went From Pestilence To Persecution

The Dark Ages were called such for good reason. Not only was the world filled with extreme ignorance and religious anxiety, but the nascent state of the medical world contributed greatly to the amount of general sickness, pain, and death faced by the masses. As a result, it remains one of the most fascinating periods…

How The History of Necromancy Revealed A Love Of The Dead

Of all human opinions to be reputed, the most foolish deals with the belief in Necromancy, the sister of Alchemy, which gives birth to simple and natural things. -Leonardo da Vinci One thing most ancient civilizations share is a fascination with the dead. The art of speaking to the deceased as a way to find hidden…

Finding Lilith: The Most Powerful Hag in History

As humans evolve and change with time, Lilith perseveres because she is eternal—she is the original Eve, the scapegoat of man, and an undeniable part of our shared psychological framework.

Hypatia Of Alexandria And The Murder That Crushed Intellectualism

Was not Hypatia the greatest philosopher of Alexandria, and a true martyr to the old values of learning? She was torn to pieces by a mob of incensed Christians not because she was a woman, but because her learning was so profound, her skills at dialectic so extensive that she reduced all who queried her…

Battles Not Burkas: These Ancient Persian Women Fought For Their Cause

Long ago, when the women of Persia were honored and revered by their culture, they often held influential and dynamic positions in society. Aside from being mothers, they played many roles—teacher, politician, business owner, even soldiers. In fact, ancient women warriors of Persia were so powerful, neighboring male-dominated cultures in both Greece and Rome viewed…

Walpurga Hausmännin: Confessions Of A Condemned Sorceress

Medieval Europe could be a frightful place for a woman of strength, especially one with the wisdom of a midwife and the proclivities of a healer. Intensified by her status as an elderly widow in 16th-century Germany, Walpurga Hausmännin made the perfect witch. Accused of over forty heinous crimes against children like vampirism and murder,…

Can These Diabolical Rulers Of The Past Explain The Present?

If anything, the recent presidential elections have reminded us that not everyone agrees on what makes an effective ruler. The amount of confusion, chaos, and general upset surrounding our recent presidential results speak to our varying perspectives as well as our forgetfulness of the past—a tyrannical and childish ruler is a wildly dangerous thing. The whole…

Freedom At All Cost: Remembering History’s Greatest Slave Rebellion

There is nothing more stirring to the blood than the quest for freedom, especially as it lies in the desperate hearts of those who have suffered the brutal lash of slavery. And sometime—in fact, much of the time—the right to freedom is begrudgingly returned only when those in power are threatened. Freedom is not something…