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When is the last time you solved a murder? In our Podcast series Crimes in the ER - Fact and Fiction, Annie Roling never expects to be solving murders as the Administrator of the Roosevelt Hospital Emergency Room. Until the night John Lennon died, her life centered on her adored daughter and unequal parts of an old beau, a new fiancé, a detective pal and medical colleagues. She now faces a series of ongoing challenges in the world of suspicious events and mysterious deaths. In the early 80’s ...
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Fact and Science Fiction
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Fact and Science Fiction

Fact & Science Fiction

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A podcast about the real science behind your favorite science fiction themes and tropes. Each episode, I choose a recurring topic or two in science fiction, and then dive into how it works in reality. If you ever wanted to learn more about genetics, virtual reality, or space travel - this podcast is for you. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
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This is a revised--and a lot longer--version of our twenty-first episode ("Some thoughts about Hanukkah by a (secular) Jewish medieval historian"). That episode was just what the title said, some thoughts about the role of Hanukkah in contemporary America and the Middle Ages. In it Ellen had a throwaway line about the Puritan war on Christmas. I th…
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“Feudalism” was once accepted by academic and popular historians alike as a defining, if not the defining, feature of medieval society. For military historians, the High Middle Ages, the period from around 1050 to 1300, was once the Age of the Feudal Knight. This is no longer the case. If academic historians use it at all in their writings or class…
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In our third and final episode of the series, Richard talks with Professor Ryan Lavelle of the University of Winchester in the U.K. about Alfred the Great. Dr. Lavelle is a leading expert on Anglo-Saxon and Viking warfare. He is also the historical consultant for the BBC/Netflix television series "The Last Kingdom," based on the Saxon Chronicle nov…
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This is the second of a three part series about King Alfred of Wessex (reigned 871-899), the only English king to be called "the Great." In this episode Ellen and I chat with Dr. Barbara Yorke, Professor Emeritus at the University of Winchester in the U.K.. Professor Yorke is arguably the world's leading expert on Anglo-Saxon Wessex. She and I shar…
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Yes, Robert Clive is certainly about to bring home the bacon big time. Then there won’t be much at all to slow down the British merchants from making big piles of cash.โดย dickshistory
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After a hiatus we are back with the long promised episode about King Alfred of Wessex (871-899), the only English king to be called "the great." In this episode, Richard gives an overview of Alfred's reign and accomplishments and explains why the Victorians thought he was great--and why Richard does as well. The musical introduction is the opening …
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Not one but two wars in fact. It’s enough to make a Jacobite rebel. Capture of Porto Bello by Admiral Edward Vernon on 22 November 1739. Private Collection. (Photo by Fine Art Images/Heritage Images/Getty Images)โดย dickshistory
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Well I suppose on the plus side, she doesn’t have to put up with George anymore. Here’s a sketch of the whole family together in one room. That may not have actually happened. George and Caroline sitting, Fred on the other side of the room, the 3 elder girls and the 3 younger kiddies.โดย dickshistory
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Not looking that good for our Churchie types. We have a new idea in government – government tells religion what to do. Walpole will get Bishop Gibson of London on the case to help out. Vanderbank, John; Edmund Gibson (1669-1748); Bodleian Libraries; http://www.artuk.org/artworks/edmund-gibson-16691748-228821…
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A new and – ho hum – magnificent king. Where would we be without them? Hudson, Thomas; George II (1683-1760); National Trust, Ickworth; http://www.artuk.org/artworks/george-ii-16831760-171879โดย dickshistory
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In this episode I interview my special guest Dr. Nicholas Morton, author of The Mongol Storm (Basic Books, 2022), about the Mongols and their invasion of and impact upon the thirteenth-century Near East. Our discussion covers who and what the Mongols were; why they were so effective militarily; Mongol religion and religious 'toleration'; their repu…
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An episode about how German George came to hate his son the Prince of Wales. But not the princess of course. No, German George was perhaps a bit too fond of Caroline.โดย dickshistory
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Or not – who cares really. Well the king does I suppose. This week we shall be meeting Henrietta Howard and hearing her heartbreaking story.โดย dickshistory
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Yes, well if you happen to be a common and smellie type, then it will be shit happens next. Lot’s of things are about to become very illegal. But here’s a picture of Melusine to brighten up your day.โดย dickshistory
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It’s the bubble episode where fortunes are made and lost. Sir Isaac Newton will learn that what goes up must come down and lose his hard earned cash in this thing. People will suicide but the main thing is the government must look like it’s doing something.โดย dickshistory
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Whatever is a Walpole? Answer: A Walpole is our first ever Prime Minister and this guy will set the standard for all future prime ministers. The bar shall be set rather low. Here’s his mug shot:โดย dickshistory
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This is the second half of a two-part series about the legendary medieval outlaw Robin Hood. In the first episode, my co-host Dr. Jennifer Paxton and I discussed the evidence for a historical basis for the legend. In this one, we look at how Robin Hood has been portrayed in film and television from the silent era to the present--and how each genera…
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In this episode Richard and Dr. Jennifer Paxton of The Catholic University of America search for a historical Robin Hood and explore the medieval and Tudor stories about the heroic outlaw and his band of merry men. This is the first of a two-part series. The follow on episode will be on Robin Hood in movies and television. Credits The podcast's int…
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Oh my giddy Aunt – we have a love story. A noble English rose and a Scottie Earl who it really seems were in love. What could possibly go wrong? Religion is what can possibly go wrong. We’ll have a look at these two and hear from author Patricia Bernstein who has a new novel out with the story.โดย dickshistory
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Time to meet the new kid. Perhaps he can give us a nice strudel recipe. Also, we’ll have a yarn with Paul Finch about his new book Usurper. Nothing like a ripping yarn, is there.โดย dickshistory
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In this episode Richard and his special guest and co-host Dr. Christine Senecal of Shippensburg University discuss the 2022 Viking movie "The Northman." Director and co-screenplay writer Robert Eggers' avowed goal in making this movie was to recreate the material and mental world of the Vikings. Please join Richard and Chrissie as they assess how w…
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In this episode, Richard and Ellen discuss who and what vikings were historically, and how they were depicted in the Middle Ages and modern times. The episode focuses upon the first century of the Viking Age, roughly from the late eighth to the early tenth century. (This episode marks the first anniversary of 'Tis But A Scratch: Fact and Fiction Ab…
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