Viva la Vida? No, Villers la Ville!

I am a solar powered individual, so naturally rainy days are the bane of my existence.  On the morning of July 22nd, I peeled back my curtains to reveal my worst enemy: grey clouds.  The day would not be ruined by them, though!  I slapped a smile on and made some seriously strong coffee.  When … Continue reading Viva la Vida? No, Villers la Ville!

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In Charlemagne’s Footsteps: Visiting the Palatine Chapel at Aachen

The German city of Aachen is one of those places that just about anyone even vaguely interested in the Middle Ages dreams of visiting. It’s associated with one of the most well-known men of the period, Charles the Great, (better known as Charlemagne). He styled himself the first Holy Roman Emperor, and appropriately enough in … Continue reading In Charlemagne’s Footsteps: Visiting the Palatine Chapel at Aachen

The Bees’ Knees: Napoleon’s Use of Archaeology, Theft, and the Trappings of French Monarchy

In 1806, the legendary French artist Ingres was commissioned to paint an official portrait of Napoleon I of France in his coronation robes. Through the visual language of power, Napoleon and the artist interwove recognizable symbols of Frankish and Roman imperial history in order to solidify his own shaky claims to authority over France. The … Continue reading The Bees’ Knees: Napoleon’s Use of Archaeology, Theft, and the Trappings of French Monarchy