History of the Baltic States The term “Baltic states”–used to describe the countries of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania–is a geopolitical term, a shorthand to group together these three Northern European sovereign states. But though the …

Turkey: From Anatolia to the Ottoman Empire The Ottoman Empire, also historically known in the West as the Turkish Empire, was a superpower that lasted for 600 years. Parcelled out among the victorious Allied nations …

Living at Versailles

Garden of Versaille

The Political and Social Climate at the Palace of Versailles. The Palace of Versailles was a place of total luxury from the time of Louis XIV’s initial plans to the end of the French monarchy …

Bauhaus Movement

Bauhaus design

The Bauhaus School and its 100-Year Legacy   The Bauhaus School was the brainchild of Walter Gropius of Germany, who reimagined art and utility as a single form that combined architecture, fine arts, and crafts …

Istanbul, Imperial City

Blue Mosque, Istanbul

Istanbul, Imperial City For more than a thousand years, Constantinople stood as the capital of the Byzantine Empire, surviving numerous attacks and internal rebellions, until the cannons of the Ottoman Empire breached its walls. Constantinople, …

Constructing Versailles

The golden entrance gates of the Palace of Versailles

Constructing Versailles, the making of a Palace The Château du Versailles is an iconic destination for all of those interested in French history. A stone’s throw away from Paris, Versailles was the official  residence of …

‘Queen of the Sea’: A History of Lisbon In 1554, the writer Damião de Góis claimed that out of all the European cities, only Lisbon and her rival Seville ‘could rightfully be called Ladies and …

Who led Rome? There are plenty of lead characters that rose to Roman power throughout its empire.  While some of them are very well known, others are less so.  Some ascended to leadership via lineage …

Venetian Maps rule

Venice - Ptolemy's map

Venetian maps ruled the world “Venice was always a frontier,” Peter Ackroyd (2009) declares in Venice: Pure City. “When the empire was divided in the time of Charlemagne, the lagoons of Venice were ascribed neither …

Monet’s Gift to France

Monet's gift to France

Claude Monet’s Water Lilies are among the most beloved artworks of the 20th century. Displayed in Paris’s Orangerie in a set of rooms devoted entirely to the paintings, they are Monet’s gift to France at …

Weaving textiles throughout history and the advancement of society Fabric and textiles industry has a long and coloured past.  While it is estimated that fabrics were used in the time of the Stone Age, nearly …

Designing Paris

Paris Seine River

Designing Paris The Paris that many of us know and love did not always look as it does now. When Napoleon III instructed Hausmann to tear down the urban centre to make way for the …

Victorian England Country Life The industrial revolution changed dramatically Victorian England Country life. From the demographic shift in the population commencing the rural -urban drift, to education and the nouveau rich from the industrialisation who …

Secrets of Florence

Florence, Italy

Secrets of Florence Florence, capital of the Italian region of Tuscany, is considered the birthplace of the Renaissance and left behind a legacy that shaped the Italy we know today. This article reveals some of …

Britain: The First Industrial Nation In the mid-18th century, the Industrial Revolution was largely confined to Britain. Historians and economists continue to debate what it was that sparked the urbanisation and industrialisation that would change …

Paris Leaders & Landmarks

Paris

Paris Leaders & Landmarks   The inhabitants of a place surely influence how it is perceived. Parisian politicians have certainly left their marks on some of France’s most famous landmarks, creating some amazing stories for …