An error in author names

Our editor has noticed that on Wikipedia, one of the pieces on Winston Churchill originally appeared, with a new link, under the author name of JAMES DEAN instead of DEAN SWIFT. In case this error appears again, we must remember that Dean Swift is a pen name used by a living author, and that James Dean was the name of a celebrated American film actor who sadly died in a traffic accident in 1955. James Dean starred in only three movies, each of them exceptionally good – East of Eden (1955), Rebel without a cause (1955), and Giant, released the year after Dean’s death.

Jeremy Taylor, editor of General-History.com and three volumes of collected history articles by Dean Swift.

By | 2015-01-18T11:58:07+00:00 January 18th, 2015|History|0 Comments

Hohenstaufen & Hohenzollern Dynasties (further notes)

what remains of the castle at Staufen / flickrhivemind.net

What remains of the castle at Staufen / flickrhivemind.net

Brief details of these two important German dynasties have appeared before on in General-History.com. Here are some additional notes:

The Hohenstaufen royal dynasty got its name from the castle of Staufen, in north Swabia. From 1138 to 1254 members of the family wore the crown as Holy Roman Emperor (q.v.). The dynasty reached its most significant period with Frederick I Barbarossa and Frederick II; both were Kings of Germany and Sicily. The dynasty is best remembered for its support of culture and courtly behaviour, though their wars are by no means to be discounted.

As Holy Roman Emperor:

1138 – 1152 Conrad III

1152 – 1190 Frederick I Barbarossa

1190 – 1107 Henry VI

1198 – 1208 Philip of Swabia

1198 – 1214 Otto IV (both Otto and Philip maintained their claim)

1215 – 1250 Frederick II

1250 – 1254 Conrad IV

The German dynasty of Hohenzollern ruled Brandenburg/Prussia from 1415 to 1918, and Imperial Germany from 1871 to the end of the Great War. The family was first noted in the ninth century, in Swabia, and a branch became Burgraves of Nuremberg. Then a descendant, Frederick VIII was awarded the title of Elector of Brandenburg in the same year as the Battle of Agincourt (1415). The Thirty Years War over, the family continued its policy of expansion and consolidation of power, starting a lengthy rivalry with the House of Habsburg (1740 – 1871). Otto von Bismarck ensured that the Hohenzollerns obtained the imperial title in 1871, but the Great War destroyed Hohenzollern fortunes and forced abdication on the last emperor, Wilhelm II, a grandson of Queen Victoria of Britain.

As Electors of Brandenburg:

Frederick I (1417 – 1440), Frederick II, Albert, John, Joaquim I, Joaquim II, John George, Joaquim Frederick, John Sigismund, George, Frederick William (the Great Elector, 1640 – 1688).

As Kings of Prussia:

Frederick I (Frederick III as Elector Brandenburg 1688 – 1713), Frederick William I, Frederick II The Great, Frederick William II, Frederick William III, Frederick William IV (1840 – 1861).

As Emperors of Germany:

William I (also King of Prussia) 18611868, Frederick III (only 1888), Wilhelm (William) II 1888 – 1918

By | 2014-12-27T13:15:18+00:00 December 27th, 2014|History|0 Comments

A new head of the House of Alba

The Duchess starts her third marriage / nick verreos.blogsite.com

The Duchess starts her third marriage / nick verreos.blogsite.com

The best known duchess in Spain, probably Europe too, has died after a long life (1926 – 2014) and a short but fatal illness. She was Cayetana, made 18th Duchess of Alba in 1954 after the death of her father the Duke. At the beginning of the Spanish Civil War the Albas had left Spain to live in London, where the Duke was Ambassador until the Treaty of Lausanne.

The new (19th) Duke of Alba /vanitatis.com

The new (19th) Duke of Alba /vanitatis.com

The new Duke of Alba is Carlos Fitzjames-Stuart, a prematurely white-haired, serious man, separated from his wife, is in his late fifties; he became Duke of Huescar when his mother was named duchess. The white hair might possibly have come about because Carlos’ mother led an extraordinary life, speaking several languages, being much loved by the ordinary people of Sevilla; at the slightest opportunity she would, even in her eighties, throw up her arms in flamenco movements and ululate on the pavement, observed with love by her third and last husband Alfonso Diez, and a certain gloom by her oldest son. Her first husband was another aristocrat, Luis Martínez de Irujo, with whom she had six children, all boys until the last. They are Carlos, Alfonso, Jacobo, Fernando, Cayetano and Eugenia. All have dukedoms. Cayetana had more titles than any other grand aristocratic family in Europe. This privileged position used to be held by another grand duchess, that of Medinaceli, who had more than ninety, but many were lost during the Second Republic, while others simply expired. (more…)

Nicolas I of Russia

/ en.wikipedia.org

/ en.wikipedia.org

This younger brother of Alexander I was born in 1796, and became Tsar in 1825 at nearly thirty years old. Any chance that there might have been to make him a reformist monarch was destroyed in the Decembrist Conspiracy. Secret societies had been formed in northern and southern Russia, mostly by army officers who had experienced the West for the first time in their lives during the Napoleonic Wars. One of these, the Prince Volkonsky, wrote: ‘the campaigns of eighteen twelve to fourteen brought Europe nearer to us, made us familiar with its forms of state, its public institutions, the rights of the people. By contrast with our own state of life, the laughably limited rights which our people possessed, the despotism of our regime first became truly present in our hearts and understanding.’ (more…)

By | 2014-10-12T15:51:40+00:00 October 12th, 2014|History, Russian history|0 Comments

Sir Robert Peel, ‘Peelites’ and ‘Peelers’

/ en.wikipedia.org

/ en.wikipedia.org

He was a Lancashireman, son of a rich industrialist. Born in the eighteenth century (1778) he got into Parliament as a Tory at twenty-one years of age. By 1812 he was in Lord Liverpool’s cabinet as Secretary for Ireland, when he was twenty-four. Looking back through history at the misadventures of Englishmen trying to administrate Ireland, one would know that Robert Peel could not treat his job as a sinecure.

   Between 1822 and 1827, and 1828 to 1830 he was Home Secretary – the second period under the Duke of Wellington’s premiership. He was never an expert ‘speechifier’, not in any way an orator like Palmerston or George Canning, but simply efficient, mastering details rapidly. He proceeded with unexpected reforms of the legal system, removing obsolete laws, and taking the death penalty off at least one hundred offences. Do not forget that in England even a hungry youth could be hanged for stealing a load of bread. (more…)

By | 2014-10-08T10:31:41+00:00 October 8th, 2014|History|0 Comments

The United States Constitution (in brief)

/ myfoxphilly.com

/ myfoxphilly.com

Among other things, mainly physical or medical, a Constitution embodies the fundamental principles on which a state is governed, especially when considering the rights of its subjects. Therefore the Unites States Constitution embodies the conception on which the American system of government is based. Most great countries have a written constitution, with the notable exclusion from the list of Great Britain.

   In America the Constitution has been the law of the land since 1789; it established a federal republic, with the intention of balancing the power of the states and that of the federal government. In the latter, power is divided among three independent branches – legislative, executive and judicial. The Document contains a brief preamble followed by seven articles which include: the organization, powers and procedures of Congress (the legislative branch); the powers of the elected President and his/her executive; powers of the judiciary (judges) which include the Supreme Court; the rights of the states, and correct procedures for amending the Constitution.

   The articles are followed by the amendments; many of the first amendments are to do with the Bill of Rights, while later ones deal with civil rights issues. Others cover concerns such as the election, death or removal (impeachment) of the President, and eligibility to stand for a seat in Congress.

   It was drafted at the Constitutional Convention held at Philadelphia in 1787, and adopted after ratification by nine of the states.

By | 2014-10-01T09:23:15+00:00 October 1st, 2014|History|0 Comments

NEWS of the books

General History in book format!

Don’t forget Volumes One & Two of GENERAL HISTORY

are available on Amazon wherever you may be.

These books are simply the articles posted on the website


in the form of a properly printed paperback book.

Volume Three will be published around Christmas time, 2014.

Jeremy Taylor (Dean Swift), college days! / Erik Thurston

Jeremy Taylor (Dean Swift), college days! / Erik Thurston

Dean Swift’ is the pen name used by author Jeremy Taylor

for his History books.

Just go to Amazon.com, or Amazon.co.uk, or Amazon.es etc.

Click on the long top rectangle ‘All’

Click on ‘Books’

Key in General History Dean Swift.

Both volumes will appear; become a subscriber to Amazon

or if you are already a subscriber, choose your mode of payment.

It is just as easy as that.

By | 2014-09-19T09:10:24+00:00 September 19th, 2014|History|0 Comments

General History – the first volume

The first Volume of General History as a book is on Amazon

For those who are interested the first volume of my 3-volume printed version of articles from General-History.com is on Amazon. Just click on Books, and then key Jeremy Taylor General History and you should find the first volume on sale at around £8. Do not be confused by the name ‘Dean Swift’ – it is just one of my pen-names!

By | 2014-08-04T19:14:52+00:00 August 4th, 2014|History|0 Comments

Left, Right, Left, Right

From the Left / paradigmas.mx

From the Left / paradigmas.mx

Mention is made in the media (rather too often) of the magic words Left or Right when the subject is politics.The terms originated as follows: The Left came from the French Revolution, when members of the Jacobin Club sat in the Convention on the left of the President’s chair. Before long the term came to be associated with people who held radical views, a belief in the sovereignty of the people, elimination by any means of royalty and/or the aristocracy, a firm republic, and anti-clericism.

   With the Industrial Revolution in Britain the left was identified with working class interests. It wanted to interefere in the free market, because it believed that by doing so social change could also be brought about. It is difficult to define what kind of ‘social change’, but one hopes it means a fair deal for all – except landowners, rentiers, lords, bishops etc. Well into the twentieth century the Left referred to all socialist parties, Christian or otherwise, and the Communist Party as a whole. Supporters and upholders of the idea of the Welfare State were and are also supposed to be of the Left, though this has not worked out in practical terms. In Spain, the Falange and General Franco referred to the Left as ‘the Reds’, perhaps because of the clenched fist and singing of ‘The Red Flag’ at public meetings. (more…)

By | 2014-07-21T10:18:17+00:00 July 21st, 2014|History|0 Comments


/ wikipedia.org

/ wikipedia.org

Samurai. This was the Japanese equivalent of the barons of England, feudal aristocrats in France and regional princes in Germany, who ruled the country while representing their king or emperor. They were the ruling caste by the 12th century. One century before these great Japanese warrior families were taking over power from the Emperor however. Towards the end of the 1180s, the victor of most of the battles, one Minamoto Yoritomo was given the special title of Shogun (emperor’s personal deputy) after his ending of the struggle between the Minamoto and Tairo families. (more…)

By | 2014-04-21T10:12:53+00:00 April 21st, 2014|History, History of Japan|1 Comment
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