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Worst Year To Be Alive!
As a history major and dedicated reader, I can totally agree with the experts on this one.  In the year 536AD, and the following decade,  the century's old Roman Empire was on the skids, crops were failing, and Europe in general was being invaded by the Huns, vangals, and you name it.  And the one thing that was not added into the equation for decades was the effect of Climate on civilization.  At that time it was a Buggerin' Mess to be civilized.

According to the Smithsonian Institute "Sixth-Century Misery Tied to Not One, But Two, Volcanic Eruptions.

Ancient volcano triggered Dark Ages?

And Science | AAAS agrees: 536 was ‘the worst year to be alive’, and its all in the ice record for us to study.  It was where the term "Dark Ages" originated.

Quote:Ask medieval historian Michael McCormick what year was the worst to be alive, and he's got an answer: "536." Not 1349, when the Black Death wiped out half of Europe. Not 1918, when the flu killed 50 million to 100 million people, mostly young adults. But 536. In Europe, "It was the beginning of one of the worst periods to be alive, if not the worst year," says McCormick, a historian and archaeologist who chairs the Harvard University Initiative for the Science of the Human Past.

A mysterious fog plunged Europe, the Middle East, and parts of Asia into darkness, day and night—for 18 months. "For the sun gave forth its light without brightness, like the moon, during the whole year," wrote Byzantine historian Procopius. Temperatures in the summer of 536 fell 1.5°C to 2.5°C, initiating the coldest decade in the past 2300 years. Snow fell that summer in China; crops failed; people starved. The Irish chronicles record "a failure of bread from the years 536–539." Then, in 541, bubonic plague struck the Roman port of Pelusium, in Egypt. What came to be called the Plague of Justinian spread rapidly, wiping out one-third to one-half of the population of the eastern Roman Empire and hastening its collapse, McCormick says.

Historians have long known that the middle of the sixth century was a dark hour in what used to be called the Dark Ages, but the source of the mysterious clouds has long been a puzzle. Now, an ultraprecise analysis of ice from a Swiss glacier by a team led by McCormick and glaciologist Paul Mayewski at the Climate Change Institute of The University of Maine (UM) in Orono has fingered a culprit. At a workshop at Harvard this week, the team reported that a cataclysmic volcanic eruption in Iceland spewed ash across the Northern Hemisphere early in 536. Two other massive eruptions followed, in 540 and 547. The repeated blows, followed by plague, plunged Europe into economic stagnation that lasted until 640, when another signal in the ice—a spike in airborne lead—marks a resurgence of silver mining, as the team reports in Antiquity this week.

[Image: 6284240-0-image-a-9_1542389912897.jpg]

Here's a good documentary detailing this terrible event.

Perfect Storms: DARK AGE VOLCANO | Full Documentary

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Interesting. There was no "Dark Ages" until the 19th century - and that term was coined then as an attack on religion - not science or livability.

The entire "Dark ages" is a crock. Christianity actually inspired science. There was no science in ancient Greece or Rome. Aristotle thought the weight of objects were proportional to the speed with which they dropped. A simple test by dropping two different weights off a cliff never occurred to him. Guesswork without empiricism is not science. It was only at the birth of Christianity, that a wise God appeared who fostered the idea that science could be done and should be done. The Church understood there was a duty to understand God's handiwork, the better to marvel at it.

As for a time of barbarism, superstition, and widespread ignorance - there was no "Dark Ages." The march of progress was sure and steady, and sparked by the Christian concept of the world as an understandable creation following understandable laws which needed to be studied. The phrase, "Dark Ages," was a myth, first used in the early 19th century by atheists to claim credit for a sudden "enlightenment" that occurred against the Church's wishes. In fact it was the Church that fostered science. Quintus Tertullian instructed in the second century, "Reason is a thing of God, inasmuch as there is nothing which God the Maker of all has not provided, disposed, ordained by reason — nothing which He has not willed should be handled and understood by reason." The success of the West, including the rise of science, rested entirely on religious foundations, and the people who brought it about were devout Christians.

The idea of 18 months of volcanic ash smothering the planet may make one think of "Dark Ages", but the true soul of the matter was in the lack of sunshine to let our crops to grow, and disinfecting illness-causing micro-organisms.

That decade was truly the worst to be alive, but why use that misery to further thr "Dark Ages" scam?
(11-27-2018, 03:42 PM)WmLambert Wrote: Interesting. There was no "Dark Ages" until the 19th century - and that term was coined then as an attack on religion - not science or livability.

That's Absolutely False.  I challenge you to show where your statement is true.   Any historian worth his/her salt Knows that the term Dark Age came from the fall of Rome and the period thereafter.  I learned that in history during my time at The Citadel, back in the 60s.

Now we are learning that there really was a literal explanation as to why it was called a "Dark Age", and not just loss of Roman Civilization in the West. This has been a long time coming, because some scholars had guess that it may well have been the result of one or more Impactors.
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(11-27-2018, 06:02 PM)John L Wrote: ...  I challenge you to show where your statement is true.   Any historian worth his/her salt Knows that the term Dark Age came from the fall of Rome and the period thereafter.  I learned that in history during my time at The Citadel, back in the 60s.

You learned wrong. That is my biggest charge against our education system. It taught disinformation which made unwitting supplicants of potentially good thinkers. The Citadel, West Point, and Annapolis were not exempt from Dewey's input.

Every good Liberal knows Gibbons wrote The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire and blamed the Fall of Rome and the rise of barbarism on Christianity. Historians disagree - yet the schools still distort the truth. The New Columbia Encyclopedia (1975) says the term "Dark Ages" is no longer used by historians because this era is no longer thought to have been so dim. The Encyclopedia Britannica concurs.

So what historians do you follow?
The Dark Ages is a term used by early Protestants to designate the way the religious tyranny of the Roman church choked all freedom of thought in EVERY line. Most orthodox scholars believe the depths of the Dark Ages was the 13th century, but it encompassed the period of intellectual stagnation that paralyzed Europe from the fall of the Roman Empire to the Renaissance.

Ellen G. White, in her book published in 1884, The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, p. 64, put it this way:
Quote:The noontide of the papacy was the world's moral midnight. The Holy Scriptures were almost unknown, not only to the people, but to the priests. Like the Pharisees of old, the papist leaders hated the light which would reveal their sins. God's law, the standard of righteousness, having been removed, they exercised power without limit, and practiced vice without restraint. Fraud, avarice, and profligacy prevailed. Men shrank from no crime by which they could gain wealth or position. The palaces of popes and prelates were scenes of the vilest debauchery. Some of the reigning pontiffs were guilty of crimes so revolting that secular rulers endeavored to depose these dignitaries of the church as monsters too vile to be tolerated upon the throne. For centuries there was no progress in learning, arts, or civilization. A moral and intellectual paralysis had fallen upon Christendom.
The same statement is also in the 1888 edition of her masterwork, The Great Controversy.

The highly respected Protestant historian James Aitken Wylie said essentially the same thing in his 1878 24-volume work, The History of Protestantism, book 1, chapter 4, p. 16:
Quote:But the noon of the papacy was the midnight of the world.

The term Dark Ages was a basic doctrinal teaching of the Protestant Reformation. Atheists did not invent it.

The notion that there was no Dark Ages is an invention of Jesuit historians trying to re-write history. These Jesuit apologists are the ones who gave us the fable about "Saint" Patrick being a champion of the Roman Catholic Church--when actually throughout all his life Patrick opposed the Papal assumption of authority over the church, and when he was traveling by coach on his way to Rome to remonstrate with the Christian Church there, his coach was waylaid by assassins paid by the Papacy to eliminate him. Two hundred years later, when Jesuit "scholars" thought memories had faded enough, they came up with the fable about Patrick being a champion of the church and was even canonized as a "saint" of the church. This is the kind of historical scholarship we can expect from Jesuit historians. (Jesuits also published classroom textbooks in America depicting priests blessing the wagon trains as they headed west, when the Catholic Church had absolutely nothing to do with the western migration involving the Gold Rush and Oregon Trail.)

When you study history, you do have to give some thought to the honesty and reliability of the historical sources.

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