In which I share some exciting news about a book!
Napoleon ruins everything, Venetians dither and the costs of oligarchy and inequality are realized at last.
Venice invents capitalism through a handy hack involving double entry of numbers. This has some serious consequences for the world.
In which pigheadedness and a desire to live in a time capsule mingle with diplomatic cunning!
Venice and the Islamic world: frenemies, or best of frenemies? We also discuss the Renaissance, Piri Reis and how powerful the position of middleman can be.
We cover the whacky and murderous antics of Francesco Morosini in brief along with his more funny insecurities.
Turns out stacking tons of gunpowder in the middle of a crowded city wasn't a bright idea and here is why.
In which we talk about failure, the angriest pope, and Gritti's incredibly cynical but effective Fabian strategy.
In which we talk a little about trade, misadventures, the perils of investing and the joys of glass 'jewels'.
In which the Venetian oligarchs harden the barriers to social advancement, secure their own positions and profits, and Genoa decides to really show Venice what for a century later. Good times.
The Byzantine Empire roars back to life, the Genoans get snooty and Venice gets worried as their operations in the Black Sea are threatened. Also: Mongols!
In which art is stolen, a blind man sees his way clear to making Venice an empire and various crimes are committed.
We talk about the Byzantines, hubris, and how Venice figured out how to profit off of the first three Crusades while trying to stick it to Genoa. Also, foreshadowing.
Things go badly, coups are attempted, the Antenori fail to learn the lessons of history and as usual the Venetians pitch a mostly-defeat as a glorious unifying victory.
Turns out that empire building ain't pretty, and the Venetians profited off the slave trade for quite some time before whitewashing it out of their history.
In which we discuss the office of the doge, the importance of grabbing children from market places to count votes, and at least in part why the Venetians loathed monarchies so much. Also, a surprise tongue twister cameo from Danny Kaye!
In which we talk about Saint Mark's 700 year long nap, abduction by the Venetians and the explosion of winged lion statues in Venice!
Another world, with robots, nukes and Nestor Makhno's quest for an anarchist society.
In which we discuss what we've talked about in 2020 and tease some new projects for next year.
Lets learn some 13th century tradecraft with the help of a friendly ex-con man, Al Jawbari!
In which we discuss the beginning of the Years of Lead, Piazza Fontana bombing by fascists and the murder of the anarchist Pinelli by Milanese police with musical accompaniment.
We cover the history of revolutionary anarchist songs with some surprising origins--and catchy beats about smashing fascism.
In which we examine the cavalcade of memes set around a 1996 sketch that is relevant to today's garbage fire of a world.
I'll be using this page to discuss my chief sources for the episode, and series in general. Louis XV shambles through managing France, innocent people are attacked by a mysterious Beast and Louis welcomes the distraction from his abysmal record.
The police murder people and get away with it.