Palmyre’s Belle Époque Lesbian Bar
By providing sexualized entertainment to tourists, the bar owners of Montmartre made visible and even celebrated the quarter’s queer culture.
Bringing France Back into American History
The current arrangement of nation-states in North America has made the role of the French in colonial history seem less important.
The Return of Ocular Communion
The idea of a virtual Eucharist may feel at odds with Catholic tradition, but it has deep roots in the church’s history.
When Monks Went Undercover to Steal Relics
Because relics were understood to be capable of working miracles, any relic that was stolen must have wanted to be.
A Roman Feast… of Death!
The banquet hall was painted black from ceiling to floor. By the pale flicker of grave lamps, the invited senators coud make out a row of tombstones.
A 19th-Century Catfishing Scheme
In the late 1800s, a U.K. scheme lured lonely bachelors with newspaper advertisements supposedly placed by wealthy women.
The Trouble with Absinthe
When temperance advocates won the ban on absinthe in 1915, many of them saw it as the first step in a broader anti-drinking campaign.
The Cadaver Synod: Putting a Dead Pope on Trial
Why did Pope Stephen VI go to such great lengths to destroy an enemy who was already dead?
When Societies Put Animals on Trial
Animal trials were of two kinds: (1) secular suits against individual creatures; and (2) ecclesiastic cases against groups of vermin.
White Supremacists and the Rhetoric of “Tyranny”
White supremacists have declared themselves in danger of losing essential rights. It's the kind of argument racists have been making for a long time.