Carnivalesque 94: No bishop, no king

Brodie Waddell

Welcome to the 94th edition of Carnivaleque! Today we will be introducing you to a wonderfully motley menagerie of historical blogs and bloggers.

Finding any overall unifying theme is impossible with a collection of this sort, but there are a few key subjects that emerged from the nominations, each of which receives a section below:

  • The historian as detective
  • Bodily functions
  • A venerable criminal enterprise
  • Places, spaces and sites
  • Thinking about the historian’s craft

I think it is particularly interesting what’s not in the links below, namely kings and queens and ‘great battles’, the traditional material for popular histories. Not that political history and military history are entirely absent, just that they are approached from a different direction than usual. Although there are a few of gentlemen and noblewomen as well as a famous scientist, the vast majority of the nominated posts are focused on people who would have been largely excluded from textbooks written fifty years ago. What should we make of this? Is old-fashioned ‘top down’ history dying off? Or is it just that the type of people who read this blog and pay attention to Carnivaleque are predisposed against reading yet another story about Henry VIII and his wives or Charles I and his parliaments? I’d be interested to hear what you think.

However, before wandering into the carnival below, take a look at this truly heart-warming short animation that tells the tale of ‘the damnable life and death of one Stubbe Peeter, 1590’, a German werewolf. For more details, see the two posts at LOLManuscripts, but in the meantime, watch the video and be amazed.

Now, on with the show…

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Monstrous readers

Brodie Waddell

In the wee hours of this morning, the Monster was viewed for the 10,000th time. Not a bad achievement for a blog dedicated to historical obscurities that only launched nine months ago. So, thanks to all of you for checking us out and thanks even more to our commenters who make posting so worthwhile!

Rather than fireworks, I thought it might be appropriate to celebrate by pulling back the curtain to reveal a few facts and statistics, following the example of Nick at Mercurius Politicus.

Since July 18th, 2012, we’ve had:

  • 53 posts
  • 10,004 views, around 40 per day
  • 74 different countries from which vistors have arrived
  • 260 views on a single day (September 2nd, thanks to a link to ‘A royal mistress’ from Two Nerdy History Girls)

We’ve received most of our readers via links from:

Perhaps most interesting are the search terms that have been used to find us. The most Young Sallypopular is, of course, ‘many-headed monster’. Interestingly, ‘archivist’ is in second place, perhaps thanks to the archival miscellany. Other unsurprising results include ‘what shall we do with a drunken sailor’, ‘civil war comic strip’ and ‘microhistory’. More unexpectedly, we also have a few readers who’ve found us by searching for ‘animated fireworks’, ‘hairy child’, ‘devil church’ and, most confusing of all, the nine clicks from ‘dirty mind of young sally’. I pity the poor saps who were looking for a local Satanist congregation or a 1973 ‘adult comedy’ only to find over-thought analysis of some early modern oddity.

Oh well, the more the merrier … Satanists and skin-flick fans, we welcome you!

Calling all bloggers and blog readers…

Every six weeks or so the historical blogosphere hosts a ‘carnival’ where a single blog publishes a ‘Carnivalesque’ miscellany of links to recent posts from around the web. This particular carnival focuses on ancient, medieval and early modern blogging. Previous editions have been hosted by Sharon Howard of Early Modern Notes and Thony C. of The Renaissance Mathematicus.

The many-headed monster will be hosting the next edition on April 27th and we’re looking for nominations. We’ve already had a few come through, but would welcome many more. The Carnivalesque nominations procedure is as follows:

We welcome perspectives from a variety of fields, especially (but not only) history, literary studies, archaeology, art history, or philosophy. You can nominate your own writing and/or that of other bloggers, but please try not to nominate more than 1-2 posts by any author for any single edition of the carnival.

Nominated blogging may be ‘academic’ or ‘popular’, so long as it is based on facts and evidence. Writing that engages with the past to discuss present issues should include significant historical content and analysis, not merely polemic. All nominations are vetted by the host of the edition, whose decision is final.

Nominated posts should have been published within the last 2-3 months. The normal channel is to send an email to the host using the nomination form at this site. Individual hosts may provide additional options. Please ensure you include the full URL of the post you are nominating, and ideally the post title and blog name.