Great Mosque at Damascus by G. Lewis, courtesy of Smarthistory & Flickr
Khan Academy is popular in math for its brief lectures and interactive modules. However, you can also use it in the Social Studies. Check out Smarthistory, a free multimedia platform for student and teacher of history, archaeology, museum curation, and art history.
“There was in their city a bronze image of Cronus extending its hands, palms up and sloping toward the ground, so that each of the children when placed thereon rolled down and fell into a sort of gaping pit filled with fire.” Hist20.14.6
New research suggests that the child burials of Carthage may not in fact be evidence of the practice (or at least of it being wide-spread). Rather, they are burial sites for infants and fetuses that died as a result of premature birth. Infant mortality was high in the ancient world (in some cases, 40% of children died before reaching their fifth birthday). The loss of a child during pregnancy or birth was also a common occurrence.
Jeffrey Schwartz, Ph.D. asserts that the majority of burials found here represent children that died of natural causes and not from the horrific murder of infants to the God Ba’al.
To learn more about these findings, read the article at MSNBC or purchase the more extensive Academic Journal Article at Antiquity.
The Buddha’s before and after their destruction (courtesy of Wikipedia).
The Buddhas of Bamiyan were monumental sculptures that stood in Afghanistan for 1,500 years. In March of 2001, the Taliban of Afghanistan succeeded in their efforts to destroy the statues in spite of wide spread protest. The Taliban government used the Islamic ban on images as justification for the extirpation of the monuments. The Times quoted Mullah Mohammed Omar as stating, “Muslims should be proud of smashing idols. It has given praise to God that we have destroyed them.”
Since the overthrow of the Taliban in 2003, archaeologists and art historians have surveyed the rubble of the Buddha’s to determine whether or not they could be repaired or reconstructed. The overall consensus was that the damage was too thorough and pervasive to allow effective reconstruction. However, a small group – most notably the German International Council on Monuments and Sites – have continued to argue and push for the statues to be rebuilt.
The decision remains controversial and likely will be debated for decades. To read more about the debate, see the article at BBC News.
Alcohol is as old as civilization… in fact, some anthropologists have argued that civilization developed so that humans could better brew and ferment grain, rice, and grapes – in short, to produce alcohol.
Ancient Sumer, the world’s oldest civilization, has hundreds of cuneiform tablets focused on the fermentation of grains but key ingredients to beer, namely barley, was not part brewing process (or at least not in the records). So, while the Sumerians had fermented grains, technically, beer may not have been on that list.