Creating Interesting Post-Apocalyptic Countries

For no reason at all related to current events, I've been thinking about post-apocalyptic settings recently. In a lot of post-apoc fiction, the focus isn't on the apocalypse itself. Most of the time, it sits in the background: sometimes it's ancient history, and sometimes it's been forgotten about entirely. The Hunger Games is a kind… Continue reading Creating Interesting Post-Apocalyptic Countries

Personal and Other

What Football Team Do I Support?

Apparently, if you like to watch football (soccer, to you Transatlantic people), you have 'a team.' A club you'll support no matter what. A club you buy merch for, cheer when they win crucial games, and cry when they get relegated. So, what team do I support? Well, I support Portsmouth. I spent a year… Continue reading What Football Team Do I Support?


How To Start A Complicated Plot (With Examples From Fallout: New Vegas)

No-one forgets the beginning of Fallout: New Vegas. You're blindfolded and gagged, three gangsters facing you. They're arguing about payment, then one of them sees you waking up. The boss pulls a gun out. "I'm sorry you got twisted up in this scene," he says to you. "From where you're kneeling, it must seem like… Continue reading How To Start A Complicated Plot (With Examples From Fallout: New Vegas)


The Two Deaths of Edward II

The information used here comes from this post by Dr Ian Mortimer on Edward's death. It's worth noting that I'm not totally convinced by the argument, and that the debate over Edward II's death is still unsettled, with Edward II scholars coming to vastly different conclusions on the same evidence. But the argument is one… Continue reading The Two Deaths of Edward II


The 1805 Cookbook That Changed The World

Cookbooks have been published since at least the 1600s. Most of those early ones, though, are nigh-unusable by modern standards. Not only were the instructions vague, they hardly ever mentioned measurements of ingredients, and most lacked structure and organisation. They changed in 1805, when Maria Rundell submitted a manuscript, "A New System of Domestic Cookery,"… Continue reading The 1805 Cookbook That Changed The World


The Magic of Pots and Pans

Towards the start of 2020, COVID-19 swept across Europe. Within a few weeks, the continent was declared the epicentre of the disease. In many countries, people were confined to their homes - with exceptions for essential journeys - for months. In countries like France and Spain, where just under half of all properties are flats,… Continue reading The Magic of Pots and Pans

History, Personal and Other

I Made Medieval Pottage!*

*Okay, so, not really. It contains potato, which was only brought to Britain in the 1580s. But pottage was still being eaten by that point, so I'm sure somebody made something similar, at some point? I did it because I wanted to cheat. See, traditional pottage (so-called because it was cooked in a pot) was… Continue reading I Made Medieval Pottage!*


The City Whose Coat of Arms is 800 Years Old

There are a lot of misconceptions about heraldry. For instance, the idea that every family name has a coat of arms. That's not true, and those sites which tell you your family has a coat of arms are lying. That coat of arms might have belonged to someone who shared your name (though sometimes they… Continue reading The City Whose Coat of Arms is 800 Years Old


The Parliament of September 1313

I've always enjoyed those 'what was happening on this day xxx years ago?' kinds of posts. I think they give us some insight, because it helps us to imagine those events happening in real time. So I'm talking about Edward II's parliament of September 1313 - 707 years ago exactly, down to the month. (source:… Continue reading The Parliament of September 1313


The Bread Law That Lasted 800 Years

Imagine for a moment you're a common Medieval peasant. You need to eat, just like we do. But you most likely don't have an oven. After all, ovens are these great, hulking metal things - they're large, expensive, and hard to use. If you're cooking at home, you're cooking in a pot over the fire.… Continue reading The Bread Law That Lasted 800 Years