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Questions tagged [history]

For questions dealing with the past events of a given world.

9
votes
2answers
190 views

Can a star with a large habitable zone have two planets revolving each other as they revolve around their star,?

Just an idea that had me doing a lot of navel gazing. Both planets are habitable to carbon based life forms, but intelligent life on each planet evolves very differently. Eventually, the two life ...
1
vote
6answers
249 views

What unexplained historical events or disasters could a kaiju have been responsible for?

I am currently exploring the idea of writing an SF / alternate history series that inserts kaijus into historical events. Specifically, I'm looking for unexplained or strange historical events that ...
6
votes
4answers
234 views

A magic system at least partially based on the real-world cultural history of magic? [on hold]

I've long had difficulty trying to put this into words, and trying to find reliable sources that I could look into to inform me on how to move forward with my writing. I'm hoping someone out there ...
7
votes
9answers
823 views

Finding real world historic examples of cultures/organizations/tribes to represent Elves

I plan to make this a series of questions to avoid being overly broad. Each question will address a particular fantasy species ("race" in RPG terms). The "racial" traits will be based on the content ...
0
votes
3answers
89 views

What insect-derived products were used by ancient and medieval human society? [closed]

Other than honey from bees and silk from silkworms, were there other instances where insects were "domesticated" and put to use? Or even if insects and their derivatives were collected from the wild ...
8
votes
3answers
436 views

Could mirrors be put in space to see ourselves in the past?

Could a mirror/s be made to reflect one side of the Earth from the edge of the solar system and viewed with a optical or radio telescope that is in orbit? With night vision, along with radio and ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Non-Mongol Steppe Nomads

Most of the quasi-medieval world include nomads, most often there is only one culture of nomads and they are accompanied with the footnote "inspired by the Mongols". Even when that isn't the case, the ...
0
votes
1answer
75 views

What other technology exists that are safer and simpler then cellular wavelength communication? [closed]

Communication without all the hassle. Is it to be presumed that cellular technology is the only form of external communication the world has to offer.
2
votes
1answer
130 views

Help designing which metals are associated with specific magical powers in my magic system [closed]

In my world, one of the magic systems involves people crushing special objects in their gauntlets to gain the dormant energy that exists within them. Essentially, imagine there are certain energy in ...
60
votes
12answers
12k views

I travel back in time: how could I know when I landed?

Today a weird guy with a pointy hat offered me and my friends to play a game: We will all travel back in time, to a random date somewhen from the antiquity to modern times. We will have a limited ...
4
votes
2answers
112 views

Starting with a map of current landforms, how can I write the geographic history of my planet?

The current worldbuilding project I have is going to be detailed - very detailed. It's about the life of an alien planet called Nemo 4, and I want to chronicle the evolutionary history of that life, ...
2
votes
1answer
135 views

At what point in time would it have been possible for anyone other than the nobility to attend a university? [closed]

I’ve got this idea for a sort of late medieval/early modern fantasy with a protagonist who’s the first in his family of peasant farmers and rural craftsmen to study hard enough and save up enough ...
14
votes
9answers
3k views

How would one develop a transistor in a medieval setting

What are the requirements for such an endeavour? I am making a novel where the protagonist is reincarnated into a medieval society. His plan is to push forward technology into the modern age. He ...
5
votes
4answers
331 views

Withholding Fusion Technology

I am designing a world where one world power or set of world powers have developed commercial fusion reactors. The fusion of this world meets all of the expectations fusion we believe might be ...
38
votes
23answers
10k views

What's a possible justification for orcs not taking over the world?

So I'm making a story with the standard Tolkien races. Not terribly original, I know, but it makes for good practice fantasy writing. While I was planning out the history, I realized that orcs ...
5
votes
3answers
297 views

Imperial Kingdoms?

I am writing a fantasy story where a vast Empire has been weakened, and the previous (inept) emperor allowed the feudal lords to act nearly autonomously. Once he died, the lords that ruled their ...
10
votes
2answers
119 views

Where can I learn more about 1700 era boating?

I want to write about men out doing whaling and fishing with the type of technology similar to that of early 1700s boating. They are going to have a blunderbuss, use old harpoon fishing, sail boats ...
2
votes
1answer
47 views

Mail service between Walla Walla and Hell Gate (MT) in mid 1860's [closed]

How long would it take a rider to deliver mail from Walla Walla WA to Hell Gate (MT) in mid 1860's? I am writing a historical fiction novel based on the completed Mullan Road. Young rider on a Morgan ...
30
votes
15answers
11k views

How recently could a god be born? [closed]

Supposing you were creating religions in your world, and your world has advanced along a technological spectrum similar to Earth's. What is the latest point in history that a new god could be ...
11
votes
9answers
3k views

What would a modern civilization look like if they aren't allowed to write? [closed]

CASE: There is a sentient life form that is snake-like in appearance, and cannot have the means to write or perform elaborate body gestures due to a lack of fine motor skills. Their only proof of ...
6
votes
3answers
248 views

How unlikely is it that Hawaii was discovered by Old World explorers?

I recently went to Hawaii for a business trip. As I was coming in for a landing and looking at the progress map in front of me, it occurred to me just how very small the Hawaiian Islands are out there ...
3
votes
1answer
217 views

How to create a medieval army secretly? [closed]

My story takes place in a Middle Ages world. A fog has appeared all around the country, and no one knows why, but it makes you get sick. They have never seen a disease like that, it's very contagious (...
4
votes
1answer
252 views

What Does Male Dominated Population Replacement Look Like? [closed]

Our genomes tell us that there are many examples in human history of a group of foreigners who are mostly male migrating somewhere and having children with local women to the nearly complete exclusion ...
1
vote
3answers
133 views

What mystery of history to solve first? [closed]

Let us assume humanity, in the near future, acquires the technology to look and listen into the past without being able to change any of it, but it is very complicated and even more expensive, so, for ...
-2
votes
1answer
111 views

If memories and knowledge could be kept, which year would be best to be “reborn” in? [closed]

I'm trying to create a character that is given an option after his death to choose the exact year he wants to be reborn in with all his memories still there. However, he is not allowed to let anyone ...
8
votes
2answers
499 views

How fast did the news travel at the height of the Mongol Empire?

When Ghenghis Khan was establishing his great empire, he felt that it was important to allow information to travel quickly. He created a postal system which allowed everyone from commoners to the ...
-2
votes
2answers
108 views

Rosie the Riveter [closed]

Is Rosie the Riveter best thought of as a myth or propaganda? Propaganda is information that is not objective and is used primarily to influence an audience and further an agenda. Myths are the ...
1
vote
4answers
291 views

Mysterious Attackers Returning Thousands of Years Later [closed]

Project A couple friends and I are currently doing a space adventure game similar to Starflight I & II, Star Control II, etc. The Empire The story involves a space-fairing Human Empire that was ...
3
votes
6answers
258 views

What knowledge or occupation today would be most useful if time-travelling back to the Middle Ages? [closed]

Note: I'm new to this site, and I'm aware that the rules say it's better to ask questions that can answered, not just discussed, so if it is better I could phrase my question this way instead: "Are ...
3
votes
7answers
346 views

Would a fascist rebellion be able to take over a mostly libertarian country?

I've recently been working on a novel for school, (I want to discuss this with outside sources, and my teacher is fine with it, is good) and my current idea for context of the country has a fascist ...
4
votes
5answers
3k views

How long could someone with locked in syndrome survive in 1915 [closed]

Let's assume a modern for its day, 1915, hospital gets a patient with locked in syndrome: how would he fare? We will think of someone who is just locked in. This means they don't have any problem ...
3
votes
0answers
135 views

Real world datasets on medieval/early-modern military strength of cities/territories? [closed]

There's a lot of high quality discussion here on determining historically realistic values for military/population/economic/etc parameters for cities-countries-etc. I'm wondering if anyone is aware ...
67
votes
19answers
11k views

Being reborn with your memories - Knowledge is power, but how much?

Imagine a world like ours, with humans that have a soul which passes on into a new human body, taking the memories with it. They get accessible during puberty, gradually. as the number of humans is ...
14
votes
6answers
7k views

Is the Pike Square formation truly invincible? [closed]

According to Wikipedia: With their famed discipline and in combination with heavy cavalry like the gendarme, the Swiss pike squares were almost invincible on the late medieval battlefield. Is ...
-4
votes
2answers
107 views

How do I prevent the collapse of the Federal Republic of Central America? [closed]

The Federal Republic of Central America was a short lived democracy founded in 1821. The Republic consisted of the present-day states of Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica. It ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

How far would a team of 2 horses with carriage travel per hour?

I found a similar but not quite perfect question/answer at: Possible distance travelled by horse over 6 weeks? The thread was great, I learned about palfreys and relays, etc. My scenario is a little ...
1
vote
6answers
287 views

Can hit and run tactics on a military scale be made viable for an auto-reloading musket?

I have a world where two sides are just going to war. One side uses traditional soldiers and archers, the other side knows how to build magical muskets, described in more detail here. These rifles ...
2
votes
3answers
290 views

How much faster can someone be trained to fire a magical musket?

I have a world in which one side of a conflict has access to a sort of magical musket. These muskets are modeled on muskets in the time period when Europe was first colonizing the Americas. I ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

expert (early) musketmen vs expert archers, who wins? [closed]

I have two sides in a conflict, one utilizing a larger, highly trained, military of soldiers and archers. This side is invading (crossing a large body of water, with appropriate logistical hurdles ...
9
votes
2answers
899 views

What factors would influence a cultures scripture to be written either left to right, right to left etc?

So I have been thinking about this lately, and I've been wondering what exactly are the reason for a culture to write in a specific format? Script form (curvy letters, straight letters), writing ...
1
vote
4answers
283 views

How would a king create distrust between his clans without being caught? [closed]

There are clans that are ruled by a High King, and this King leads them in the war against their enemy. The only way the king has power is because each clan has absolute trust in him. However the King ...
5
votes
4answers
180 views

Is there any Rubber/Latex source that could have been used by Europeans prior to the discovery of the Americas?

I was imagining a scenario where an 21st century engineer accidentally finds himself transported through time to early Renaissance Europe. Realizing that no help or rescue is on the way, he decides to ...
3
votes
2answers
213 views

Obtaining past winning lottery numbers [closed]

For a science fiction story involving time travel, where the protagonists can go back exactly 33 years from 2013 to 1980, and are looking for a way to make a lot of money quickly: Is there any way ...
17
votes
18answers
6k views

Why would people not settle an open plain?

My world consists of a relatively narrow strip of land with the sea on one side and the mountains on the other. However, to the north and south are simply grasslands, and maybe the occasionally forest....
5
votes
4answers
355 views

Panhandle property history

I am drawing a map of a fictional city (currently set in year 1900). All the technology is based on the real world. My map includes property boundaries. In certain cases, a property is behind another, ...
2
votes
2answers
169 views

What economic effects would magically-enforced isolation have on the Victorian age British Empire?

The year is 1862. A magician raises up an impenetrable magical barrier around the British Isles. The barrier is spherical in shape, and it contains England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland. It also ...
28
votes
10answers
5k views

Can there be a space age without petroleum (crude oil)?

Crude Oil, is a term used to describe petroleum products harvested from geological formations beneath the Earth's surface. As a fuel they maybe called hydrocarbons, hydrocarbons can be found/created ...
7
votes
1answer
142 views

How would early astronomers prove the existence of a spherical firmanent around the Earth?

Someone made the Earth. They placed man on the surface and gave them plants, animals, the waters, and the mountains to make their life compete. The Earth exists within a spherical firmament upon ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

What prosthetics would be suitable for a rural aristocrat in history?

What kind of prosthetic technology would be available to a wealthy but rural aristocratic person without a leg and how would it affect their social standing? The time era is sort of pre-Elizabethan, ...
0
votes
1answer
130 views

Would Franz Joseph I (emperor of Austria 1848-1916) protect a minority hated by others or would he help assimilate them? [closed]

My world has a conflict involving Franz Joseph and a hated minority inside his empire. The Ottoman's want control over them, and I'm not sure whether he would protect them for power, protect them ...