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Author Topic: Most annoying historical myths?  (Read 17887 times)

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Offline Oniya

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #425 on: February 21, 2014, 07:52:43 PM »
I thought that was the 'Blazing Sword' of the Voltron lions...

Offline Cyrano JohnsonTopic starter

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #426 on: February 21, 2014, 10:00:16 PM »
Also the Sword of Omens.

Offline Tairis

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #427 on: February 22, 2014, 09:33:24 PM »
Lets not forget the 'folded a million times so its stronger than any western sword' stuff too. Thanks, Highlander :p

Offline Neysha

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #428 on: February 22, 2014, 09:48:10 PM »
Lets not forget the 'folded a million times so its stronger than any western sword' stuff too. Thanks, Highlander :p

The rest of Highlander is based on true stories though right?

RIGHT?

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #429 on: February 22, 2014, 10:00:43 PM »
Oooh, ooh. And the 'tested by cleaving through the bodies of condemned criminals stacked on top of each other' one.


Offline TheBlackRider

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #430 on: February 23, 2014, 07:20:49 AM »
The rest of Highlander is based on true stories though right?

RIGHT?

Yes, Highlander was a documentary, and the events happened in real time.  :D

Offline Tairis

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #431 on: February 23, 2014, 09:50:23 AM »
Oooh, ooh. And the 'tested by cleaving through the bodies of condemned criminals stacked on top of each other' one.

Err that's actually not a myth. The people were generally already dead but during certain eras blades were tested on corpses in Japan.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #432 on: February 23, 2014, 10:43:47 AM »
Err that's actually not a myth. The people were generally already dead but during certain eras blades were tested on corpses in Japan.

It's not the 'tested on corpses' bit that's important. It's the 'sharp enough to cut multiple bodies stacked on top of each other in half with a single swing' bit, whether they are dead or not.

Ancient Japanese katanas = cyberpunk monomolecular blades, apparently.

Offline Cyrano JohnsonTopic starter

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #433 on: February 23, 2014, 10:48:40 AM »
FWIW they did a pig-carcass test on the katana on DW, and the katana did prove able to cut through two pig carcasses (closest possible legal thing to human bodies) in one stroke.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #434 on: February 23, 2014, 10:54:21 AM »
Hrmph. >:(

Offline Neysha

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #435 on: February 23, 2014, 05:02:54 PM »
Hrmph. >:(

What's the term for busting the busting of a myth?  ???

Offline Ironwolf85

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #436 on: February 23, 2014, 06:06:26 PM »
goes to show some things are true.
Still They probably used pigs or other meat not criminals to test the blades.
only a true asshole would do that.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #437 on: February 23, 2014, 06:22:31 PM »
goes to show some things are true.
Still They probably used pigs or other meat not criminals to test the blades.
only a true asshole would do that.

Pre-executed criminals wouldn't be unreasonable, but then again, the Japanese had a huge cultural thing about corpses - it might be better to test a blade on a pig than to stain it with the blood of an already-dead brigand or thief.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #438 on: February 23, 2014, 08:50:12 PM »
I've seen demonstrations involving tatamis wrapped around bamboo, which supposedly provides the same sort of resistance as flesh and bone.  Seems to me that would be far more economical than either executions or simple butchery.

Offline Lux12

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #439 on: February 25, 2014, 11:40:26 AM »
Here's another one. The Native Americans had absolutely no knowledge of metalworking before the arrival of settlers. Granted they may not have been crafting steel maces and longswords but certain northwestern peoples made fairly extensive use of copper. Groups around the the Mississippi also did so. They may not have had blacksmiths of the variety seen among other civilizations, they did have a significantly greater understanding of metallurgy than many think.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2014, 07:24:38 PM by Lux12 »

Offline Zakharra

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #440 on: February 25, 2014, 02:29:54 PM »
  One really annoying myth for me is that primitive people are/were stupid. They were not. They were very intelligent and took to whatever advantage they could find. the Plains Indian tribes are a big example. In less than a hundred years after the Spanish landed in Mexico, several tribes had converted from a pastoral culture to a nomadic culture that could and did range wide to do their raids.

 Another myth is that the American Indian tribes were peaceful. and fully in touch with nature. This ignores the forests that were cleared to grow crops and the wars the Indians had with each other. Or that some tribes even took slaves.  Peaceful the Native Americans were not. No more than any other human society.

Offline TheBlackRider

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #441 on: February 27, 2014, 01:20:42 PM »
Or that some tribes even took slaves.  Peaceful the Native Americans were not.

I was very surprised to learn that the Cherokee kept slaves and actually fought for the Confederacy during the Civil War. In fact the last Confederate general to surrender, Stand Watie, was Cherokee.

Offline Ironwolf85

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #442 on: February 27, 2014, 03:41:58 PM »
yep, and lets not forget the Comachie raided & regularly took hostages from other tribes.
When they applied this practice, which to them was the normal state of plains warfare, to the texans, then to the expanding US settlers. The european culture they came from, with it's informal patriarchal chivalry (protect the womenfolk!) meant that raiding to aquire captives and hostages was viewed as an automatic act of war. The texans were capable of fighting back, but the US was a modern nation and waged a full out war on a scale in a way the comanchie could not understand, for a reason they couldn't understand.

Offline TheBlackRider

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #443 on: February 27, 2014, 04:22:02 PM »
While we're on the subject of Chivalry, I think it's a myth that the code of Chivalry did much to protect your average woman. For noble-born women, maybe, but if you look at what all went on during the 100 Years War (during the height of Chivalry), you see account after account of rapes and pillages by knights, both on the French and English side. The "chevauchee" was a horrific tactic meant to break the fighting spirit of the people. Raid their village, kill the men, rape the women, all in an effort to draw out the local lord into combat. The sort of total war that took place during the Age of Chivalry makes Sherman's March look like a tea party.

Offline Ironwolf85

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #444 on: February 27, 2014, 05:33:13 PM »
While we're on the subject of Chivalry, I think it's a myth that the code of Chivalry did much to protect your average woman. For noble-born women, maybe, but if you look at what all went on during the 100 Years War (during the height of Chivalry), you see account after account of rapes and pillages by knights, both on the French and English side. The "chevauchee" was a horrific tactic meant to break the fighting spirit of the people. Raid their village, kill the men, rape the women, all in an effort to draw out the local lord into combat. The sort of total war that took place during the Age of Chivalry makes Sherman's March look like a tea party.

Chivalry's existance wasn't a myth, but it was a myth that all knights Followed the code. To be fair some took it very seriously, much like samurai and bushido. But the guys were humans, and humans can be assholes.

I think a lot of people forget that many socities from east, to west, to the new world, only applied their "noble standards" to those within their tribe, culture, religion, or nation. This is how vikings seem progressive within their own villages, but justified loot/rape/murder everyone outside their homeland.

Offline TheBlackRider

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #445 on: February 27, 2014, 06:01:45 PM »
Well I never said the concept of Chivalry didn't exist, just that I doubted how widespread its application really was. But you raise a good point about most people treating their ingroup far differently from their outgroup. It's telling that, around the globe, most ethnic groups have (or had) a name for themselves that translated simply to "The People," with the understanding being that anybody not from your group/tribe/nation was inherently subhuman. That's what was really shocking about Darwin's theory of common descent at the time; many people had a hard time believing that white people, black people, and everyone else were all part of the same species.

Pete Singer has an excellent book called "The Expanding Circle" where he discusses how people treated those inside and outside of their group. He makes a pretty persuasive argument that our current era of unprecedented peace (and we have been getting less violent as species, no matter what the nightly news tells you) is due in part to our widening of the "circle" of beings whom we consider worthy of personhood.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #446 on: February 27, 2014, 06:39:19 PM »
Also know as Dunbar's Number, or as Cracked humorously (but fairly accurately) renamed it, the Monkeysphere (though Dunbar's actual theory believes it is a limit on brain size).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunbar%27s_number
http://www.cracked.com/article_14990_what-monkeysphere.html

Offline Ironwolf85

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #447 on: February 27, 2014, 11:18:29 PM »
Sorry, I'm just used to being forced on the defencive when I talk about western socity in a positive light. The concept of Chivalry was taken seriously enough that it probably improved the lives of those within the knight's "circle" conciderably compared to the dark ages.


I'd like to take a poke at some modern myths recently. On the internet there's an odd myth that historicly everyone, everything, had some polar opposite, I've noticed this dualisim (you said somthing good about sony without qualifying it, therefore you must be a sony fanboy) is being applied to history.
This worries me, quite a lot, as many groups had no polar opposite, and history was never this black and white.
Thought I'd bring this up.

Offline Lux12

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #448 on: February 28, 2014, 12:25:39 PM »
Sorry, I'm just used to being forced on the defencive when I talk about western socity in a positive light. The concept of Chivalry was taken seriously enough that it probably improved the lives of those within the knight's "circle" conciderably compared to the dark ages.


I'd like to take a poke at some modern myths recently. On the internet there's an odd myth that historicly everyone, everything, had some polar opposite, I've noticed this dualisim (you said somthing good about sony without qualifying it, therefore you must be a sony fanboy) is being applied to history.
This worries me, quite a lot, as many groups had no polar opposite, and history was never this black and white.
Thought I'd bring this up.
I would beg to differ. There is. It's just not always what people think.

Offline Ironwolf85

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Re: Most annoying historical myths?
« Reply #449 on: February 28, 2014, 12:43:37 PM »
I mean some things do have their opposates, rivals, ect. It's that I've been seeing it overapplied to everything including history.
Quote
"You like british history? Then you must hate..." insert a long rant of me hating ireland for some odd reason here
I am finding this tiresome.

Anyway let's move on to the Tesla and Edison thing. I think they've both been mythologized far more than they should have.