historical-nonfiction:

Always enjoy mental floss’s stuff— here’s one of their latest videos!

Since this video only talks about China, Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome, and England, I’m going to add a couple more (though they really pertain more to Jewish genealogy than anything else, I think):

If I’m not mistaken, for the Jews in France and part of Western Europe, they finally had to have last names, under Napoleon I. This is because during his time as Emperor of France and part of Western Europe, he wanted to conduct a census. Before this you were just known by your first name and being a son/daughter of father’s first name.

Catherine the Great was the one who instituted/mandated the idea that Jews in the Russian Empire (modern-day Russia and Eastern Europe) needed last names, which is great. However, this is the same Empress we’re talking about who *created* the Pale of Settlement and forced all the Jews to live in that area. *groans*

So the last names could be (I’m only giving 1-2 examples for each, but there could be a lot more):

Occupations: Kantor

Being a descendant of a priestly role: Cohen, Levy/Levine

Color: Schwartz (which comes from the word schvartz which means black), Green/Greene

Flowers: Rosen (which means rose)

A building material: Stein (which means stone)

A building: Haus (pronounced as hoiz, meaning house)

Metal: Gold, Zilber (meaning silver in Yiddish)

Combinations (!): Rosenstein (I made that one up; I don’t even know if that’s an actual surname. I just wanted to give an example.) (It would mean rose stone.)

Russian-sounding: Rubinski/Rubinsky (I made that one up; I don’t even know if that’s an actual surname. I just wanted to give an example.)

Americanized: Taking the last name I made up, we’re going to slightly change it. So let’s say a family comes over and their last name is Rubinsky. Well, after a couple or few years in America, the family might’ve shortened it to Rubin. AND NO, THE LAST NAME WASN’T CHANGED AT ELLIS ISLAND. STOP PERPETUATING THAT MYTH! ALL THE OFFICIALS DID WAS CHECK TO SEE YOU GAVE THEM THE SAME LAST NAME THAT WAS RECORDED AT THE PORK OF EMBARKATION. AND WHY WOULD IMMIGRANTS CHANGE THEIR LAST NAME AT THE PORT OF DEPARTURE? THEY WOULD’VE BEEN INFLUENCED TO CHANGE IT (TO BECOME MORE AMERICAN) AFTER LIVING IN THE U.S. FOR A WHILE.
A famous example of this change/Americanization is:
Israel Ballin —> Irving Berlin

thegreatwardaybyday:

21 October 1914 - The battle of the Vistula river ends with a Russian victory.

thegreatwardaybyday:

21 October 1914 - The battle of the Vistula river ends with a Russian victory.

ilovereadingandwriting:

You are a writer (via Pinterest)

ilovereadingandwriting:

You are a writer (via Pinterest)

(via ceirdwenfc)

Tags: writing

The secular community is dead, dead, dead. There’s no Yiddish press, no Yiddish theater [not quite accurate since there is one still-vibrant group, the National Yiddish Theater-Folksbiene]. Dead, dead, dead. There were hundreds of Sholem Aleichem schools, Peretz schools. Where are they? How…

If I may quote Jordan Kutzik (whom I’ve met (!!!)) from this article:

“‘Language is the lifeblood of a people and the body through which ideas are transmitted across the generations,’ he said. ‘Without knowing the language, you can’t know the culture.’”

READ THIS ARTICLE, YOU GUYS.

reblog if you’re accepting anonymous asks from anyone about anything

(Source: hunterraiehorror, via haslemere)

Tags: life travel


For a moment Anne’s heart fluttered queerly and for the first time her eyes faltered under Gilbert’s gaze and a rosy flush stained the paleness of her face. It was as if a veil that had hung before her inner consciousness had been lifted, giving to her view a revelation of unsuspected feelings and realities. Perhaps, after all, romance did not come into one’s life with pomp and blare, like a gay knight riding down… perhaps… perhaps… love unfolded naturally out of a beautiful friendship, as a golden-hearted rose slipping from its green sheath.

For a moment Anne’s heart fluttered queerly and for the first time her eyes faltered under Gilbert’s gaze and a rosy flush stained the paleness of her face. It was as if a veil that had hung before her inner consciousness had been lifted, giving to her view a revelation of unsuspected feelings and realities. Perhaps, after all, romance did not come into one’s life with pomp and blare, like a gay knight riding down… perhaps… perhaps… love unfolded naturally out of a beautiful friendship, as a golden-hearted rose slipping from its green sheath.

(Source: hayworths, via anne-shirley-gilbert-blythe)

historical-nonfiction:

In 1869, Chinese and Irish laborers working on the Central Pacific Railway managed to lay down 10 miles of tracks in just one day. Their accomplishment has never been matched.

Here’s a source about it. Interesting to read, though the discriminatory nicknames are just so morally and ethically wrong.

Also, for anyone who grew up on/knew/knows about the Dear America series, part of the April 29, 1869 entry (pages 160-161 in the old version) in The Great Railroad Race: The Diary of Libby West, Utah Territory, 1868 by Kristiana Gregory discusses Central Pacific Railway managing to lay down 10 miles and 56 feet of track in 12 hours (aka, one day).

(Source: web.stanford.edu)

"Imagination is not an icing on the cake of life but the oven in which it is baked."

— Orna Ross (via writersrelief)

wittacism:

It’s essay writing season for tons of students!

After being a college writing tutor for over a year, I thought I would share my advice with all you awesome people on tumblr. This is how I write essays, but if you’ve got more tips, feel free to add them below. 

Happy writing. You can do it!

(via andythanfiction)