This carpet is a specific type of carpet woven in the Islamic world called a sajjadah or prayer rug. Typically, these carpets will have one or more arches decorating its center field representing early mosque architecture or the mihrab a niche in a wall that directs the worshipper towards the holy site of Mecca. Worshippers use these types of rugs to make their daily prayers and orient... Read More »
Bonaparte’s secretary naively complained how the hopes of the French invasion were shattered by the reality of the situation in Egypt. He clearly expected that the invaded would regard the French as liberators instead of attackers.
On display here are several objects from the Museo Casa de Nacarello, a small museum in Colonia, Uruguay that aims to recreate daily life in an eighteenth-century home. The building that houses the museum dates from that period, and it contains furniture, dishes, and decorations that residents of Colonia would have used at the time. In the corner of this room, a washing basin sits on a small... Read More »
This engraving pairs images of enslaved people and free blacks in four categories: dress, deportment, entertainment, and access to water. Although there are differences between the pairs, these are not as great as they might be.
Ovington’s travelogue “The City of Surat and Its Inhabitants,” an excerpt from John Ovington’s A Voyage to Surat in the Year 1689 provides students with a European trader’s point of view as he confronts the world of Islam during the Mughal rule of India. Its themes and habits of mind supplement the study of the years 1450-1750. The selection fits into the greater global context by... Read More »
The Philippines, an archipelago of over 7,000 islands in the western Pacific Ocean, had been a Spanish colony for over 300 years by the 1890s. Filipino nationalists led by Emilio Aguinaldo rebelled against Spanish rule beginning in 1896. When the United States declared war against Spain over events in Cuba in 1898, the U.S. Navy moved against Spanish colonies in the Pacific as well. U.S.... Read More »
Imperialism is one of the most pertinent topics in relation to travel and exploration. By the end of the 19th century, the spread of European imperialism had made many areas of the world “safe” for women travelers. As a result the volume of women’s writing increased significantly, so there is a wide range of texts to choose from. One such example is Mary Kingsley, who traveled to West Africa... Read More »
In 1526, the king of the Kongo, Nzinga Mbemba (who by this time had adopted the Christian name of Afonso I) began writing a series of twenty-four letters to the Portuguese King Joao III appealing for an end to the slave trade. While a trading relationship had been in place between Portugal and Kongo since the 1480s, Afonso was increasingly unhappy that the relationship between both countries... Read More »