Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Political Bride: Princess Wen Cheng (文成公主)

Politically-arranged marriages were very very common in the ancient world, be it China or other civilisations. Such is the fate of political brides to become the playthings of chance. To be sent off bearing a multitude of riches to a faraway land,a hostile court and perhaps, a ruthless husband is a nightmare that many had to endure. Some marriages might have been happy, but it is more likely that many suffered in obscurity and silence. Out of so many disastrous affairs, now and then there would be a bride whom, upon bringing upon lasting peace and prosperity to the nations,is granted eternal fame in historical texts and movie adaptations.

Like Wang Zhaojun, Princess Wencheng was a political bride. Like Yang Guifei, she was born during the Tang dynasty, albeit earlier. She is remembered for her contributions rather than her beauty, and her tale is as interesting as the aforementioned duo.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Oliver Cromwell

Contrasting opinions: Hero or Villain?
Rich in its History of Royal Families, England has been well known for its Monarchs. If you're ever wondering if there's a point of time whereby England had not had a King, then yes, that once happened. There was one man who had ruled England for 5 years but he was no King. That man who ran the country was none other than Oliver Cromwell, 1st Lord Protector of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland.

There are many divided opinions about this man and one of them was whether he was a great despot or a great hero.

Was he a tyrant? He was like a dictator.
But he refused the English crown. So what do you think of him now?

He certainly became infamous-- or famous-- when he got Charles I of England, the King at that time, to be executed. To hate him or not, Oliver Cromwell was indeed an admirable man. How many country farmers have risen to become a ruler of three countries (England, Scotland, and Ireland)?

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