East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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Serendipity of sorts: the Thirty Years War

“See you in Prague,” Graham Nash used to say – and today marks the 400th anniversary of the Defenestration of Prague, a rather obscure to most but pretty violent episode of European History that traditionally marks the start of the Thirty Years War.


Now, I am quite fond of the Thirty Years War, and this despite the fact that Continue reading


Learning my history

“By 1937 almost 75 per cent of European trade was on a barter basis.”

Not bad, as a snippet of historical info, when you’re planning a story with a smuggler as the main character.

Researching historical details as background and framework for stories can be great fun.
In this case, it’s also long overdue.

When I was in high school, history stopped with the First World War.
This, for two main reasons
. the post-WWI history of our country is still a politically sensitive area
. post-WWI history is part of the second half of the last year, and it normally gets sacrificed to make room for more hours in the subjects that will be covered in the final exam. Continue reading