Saturday, June 29, 2019

10 Wise Anna Komnene Quotes

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Anna Komnene was born to Emperor Alexios and Empress Eirene in 1083, just two years after Alexios wrested the imperial throne from his predecessor, Emperor Nikephoros III Botaneiates, after a typical Roman civil war. As a child, Anna gained a broad, but thorough, education. She was interested in many topics—literature (plus grammar and rhetoric), medicine, philosophy, metaphysics and geography. She continued to be fascinated by intellectual pursuits all her life. She would later gather salons of great thinkers and give them patronage to encourage them to continue writing and making new discoveries. When her brother, Emperor John II, ascended to the imperial throne in 1118, Anna Komnene hoped to usurp power, yet her plot was discovered and she was forced into a convent. There, from 1143-1153, Anna Komnene wrote a history about the reign of her father, which she titled The Alexiad. Most historians recognize Anna Komnene as the first female historian, or at least The Alexiad is the first known history to have been written by a woman. The ten quotes here come from that work, translated by E. R. A. Sewter (Penguin Books, 2009). 

The elegant music in the background is: "Midnight Tale" Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License 

All images used in the creation of this video were public domain at the time of creation.

Read our biography on Anna Komnene, HERE.

Take a look at other Anna Komnene quote pictures, HERE.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

10 Insightful Thucydides Quotes

Thucydides (c. 460-400 BCE) was an Athenian general and historian who lived through the Peloponnesian War (c. 431-404 BCE) between Athens and Sparta. He was eventually exiled from Athens in 424 BCE after the brilliant Spartan general, Brasidas, bested him during the war. Yet, being exiled allowed Thucydides to gather information from both sides of the war, consequently making his History of the Peloponnesian War a more well-rounded and authoritative text. Here are 10 insightful quotes from Thucydides’ timeless history.

The translation of Thucydides used here is by Rex Warner (Penguin Classics, 1972).

The calm music in the background of the video is:
Pippin the Hunchback by Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License.

All images used in the production of this video were public domain at the time of the film's creation.

For more quotes of Thucydides (in a non-video format), click HERE.

For short articles themed on Thucydides and his work, click HERE.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Ten Mysterious Edgar Allan Poe Quotes

Edgar Allan Poe was born in 1809 to David and Elizabeth Poe, two actors who lived in the city of Boston, Massachusetts. Unfortunately, David Poe abandoned the family shortly after the birth of his son, and Elizabeth Poe died in 1811, when Edgar Allan Poe was only three years old. With no immediate family able to take care of him, Edgar Allan Poe was taken in by the Allan family in Richmond Virginia as a foster son.

Even at a young age, Edgar Allan Poe strove to be a writer. Despite his great intellectual abilities, Poe struggled to stay in school. Between 1825 and 1826, he left home to attend the University of Virginia, but in less than a year, Poe was dismissed from the University of Virginia for lack of funds. After that, Poe joined the military from 1827-1829, and attended West Point after being honorably discharged from the armed services. Yet, once again, Edgar Allan Poe was kicked out of school.

From 1831 to 1835, Edgar Allan Poe lived with his aunt, Maria Clemm, and her young daughter, Virginia. While living with them, Edgar had his first taste of recognition with the publication of his short story, "Ms. Found in a Bottle," which was released in 1833. Poe found eventually found a job as a magazine editor in 1835, and a year later he married the aforementioned Virginia, his cousin.

Virginia was Poe’s muse, both during their marriage and after her death to tuberculosis in 1847.  During his years as a married man, Edgar Allan Poe published such famous works as “The Fall of the House of Usher” (1838), “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” (1843), “The Mystery of Marie Rogêt” (1843), “The Pit and the Pendulum” (1843), “The Black Cat” (1843), “The Tell-Tale Heart” (1843) and “The Raven” (1845). After Virginia’s death, Edgar Allan Poe was inspired to write one of his most emotionally powerful poems, “Annabelle Lee” (1849).

Shortly before the publication of “Annabel Lee,” Edgar Allan Poe left Richmond Virginia, intending to arrive in Philadelphia. Mysteriously, he was found delirious in Baltimore and died of odd circumstances on October 7, 1849. The cause of the great author’s death remains unknown and debated. There are many theories about the cause of death, including being beaten to death, rabies, poisoning, or even a case of fatal kidnapping. Even today, no conclusive consensus has been reached as to why and how Edgar Allan Poe met his end.
All images used or modified for this video were public domain at the time of editing.

The intro music was written by C. Keith Hansley for use on this channel, and the rest Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" accompanies the rest of the video.

Read our more in-depth biography on Edgar Allan Poe, HERE.

Friday, September 21, 2018

10 Witty Quotes From Benjamin Franklin

Over the course of his life, Benjamin Franklin (1706- 1790) underwent a tremendous transformation, from a poorly educated boy who ran away from his family, to a world-acclaimed statesman, inventor, scientist and diplomat who was received as a guest by at least five kings. Born to Josiah and Abiah Franklin; he was one of seventeen children. Due to his father’s money troubles, Benjamin’s education was cut off after only two years of formal schooling. Even so, he was able to cultivate his own intellect through an avid passion for reading. By 1718, Benjamin Franklin (a boy of 12) was sent to his brother, James, to become a printer’s apprentice. Yet, by 1723, the seventeen-year-old Benjamin could no longer suffer his brother’s abuses and he decided to flee to Philadelphia, which would become his lifelong home. He built a personal fortune through his printing business and other enterprises, but by the 1750s, Franklin divided his time between carrying out scientific experiments and representing the colonies in London. Politically, Franklin was a member of the Pennsylvania Assembly, and later, the Second Continental Congress. He also aided in the drafting of the Declaration of Independence (1776) and the Treaty of Paris in 1783. Benjamin Franklin died in 1790 and around 20,000 people attended his funeral.

The intro music was written and performed by C. Keith Hansley for this channel.

The classy flute song in the background of the video is Boismortier Concerto for Five Flutes No. 4, Allegro, by the United States Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps.

Thanks for watching!

Check out individual Benjamin Franklin quote pictures, HERE

Glance through some short articles about Franklin from our "Did You Know?" section, HERE.

 Read a brief biography about Benjamin Franklin, HERE.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Ten Wise Quotes From Sun Tzu

According to the scant information about Sun Tzu, the master strategist was born in Ch’i (or Qi), modern Shandong Province, but he served in the court of King Ho-Lu (or He Lü) of Wu, who reigned from 514-496 BCE. If Sun Tzu truly did work for King Ho-Lu, then he would have been a contemporary of Confucius (c. 551-479 BCE). The recording of Sun Tzu’s sayings continued into the 3rd century BCE, culminating in The Art of War.

Intro music was written and performed by C. Keith Hansley for use only on this channel.

The music throughout the rest of the video is Sao Meo Orchestral Mix by Doug Maxwell/ Zac Zinger.

All images used in creating this video are Public Domain via Creative Commons.

All images are from the Ming Dynasty Departure Herald, from the Hajing period in China (c. 1522-1566), [Public Domain] via Creative Commons.

All quotes used in this video are from John Minford’s translation of The Art of War (Penguin Classics, 2009).

Thanks for watching!

Read our biography about Sun Tzu, HERE.

Check out other quote pictures from Sun Tzu, HERE.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

10 Harmonious Buddhist Quotes From The Dhammapada

The Dhammapada (Verses on the Way) was a concise collection of Buddhist teachings compiled around the 3rd century BCE. To this day, it remains one of the most popular Buddhist texts. The translation used in this video is that of Glenn Wallis (Modern Library, 2004/2007 edition). Of the 423 verses in the text, we have selected 10 of the most profound and memorable statements for your enjoyment.

All images used in the creation of this video were Public Domain via Creative Commons.

The intro music was written and performed by C. Keith Hansley for use exclusively on this YouTube channel.

The calm music in the background is:
Healing by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (

Take a look at all of our quote pictures from the Buddha, HERE.

Check out our quotes from various religoins, ancient and modern, HERE.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Wings Over Water: Aircraft Carrier Origins

In this video, we discuss the great steps in naval aviation that led up to the birth of modern aircraft carriers. We begin with Eugene Ely, the first man to land and take off an airplane from the deck of a warship. Next, we learn about how the earliest iterations of aircraft carriers were used in the field and how these first flights set precedents for the future.

The intro music was written and performed by C. Keith Hansley for use on this YouTube channel. The atmospheric track throughout the rest of the video is Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries”

All images/footage used in this video are public domain, or appropriately lisenced for reuse.

Thanks for watching!

Check out our original "Did You Know?" article, where we talked about Eugene Ely's first flight from a warship, HERE.

Take a look at our article about the birth of the earliest fighter-planes, HERE.