Welcome to the High Middle Ages

Merry Farmer

If there’s one common misconception about History that drives me crazy, it’s the assumption that civilization started out in a horrible, low place and has steadily increased and gotten better in a straight line incline.  No.  Just no.  History doesn’t work like that.  In fact, History is more of a wavy line of highs and lows, pitfalls and zeniths.  At various points things have been better and they have been worse.  The trick is to be born into one of the high points and to stay far, far away from the low points.

The Roman Empire was a high point.  Civilization flourished and was full of amazing accomplishments, running water, massive architecture, gladiators….  It was awesome and everyone knew it.  But the Roman Empire declined and fell.  The pendulum swung in the wrong direction, and Europe muddled its way into a (somewhat misnamed) Dark Ages.  And that’s it, right?  Things…

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