Saturday, April 16, 2016

Question for any Historians Reading This

I am currently working on the sequel to Salamander, my second novel, and would like some relevant historical information. The novel is a fantasy, the world it is set in has technology somewhere between our fourteenth and 18th century (no firearms) plus weak magic. Political institutions a bit like seventeenth or eighteenth century England--a monarchy with real power but not absolute, feudalism on the way out but not entirely vanished.

The capital of the kingdom of Esland has been taken in a surprise attack by an army from a neighboring state. A good deal of looting, burning and killing, as usual under such circumstances. A defending force is still holding out in the citadel.

Two weeks after the attack, what does the situation look like? Are the attackers sending looting parties into the countryside for food or simply offering to buy it, thus giving farmers an incentive to come to them? Is there a curfew in the city? Has city life for the survivors more or less returned to normal? Have invaders recruited locals to patrol the streets, as a step towards longer run control over the city? Are the city gates open and guarded, open and not guarded, open during the day and closed at night (relevant because I have a character planning to enter the city)?

The invaders anticipate an army or armies eventually being assembled to try to retake the capital, but there is not yet one close enough to be an immediate threat.

Anyone know of good historical sources, preferably primary, that describe this sort of situation? I would rather steal from history than make it up out of whole cloth.

Saturday, April 02, 2016

My Response to a Non-Libertarian FAQ

A long time ago, a blogger I think highly of wrote a non-libertarian faq. When I came across it, some years later, I responded by email, he replied, I replied. I eventually got around to converting the exchange to a web page.

I recently came across a blog post which commented on the non-libertarian faq, remarked that he thought it was basically right but also that he would like to see my response. Since his blog does not permit comments or provide the author's email but he apparently reads my blog, I thought providing a link here would be the easiest way of showing it to him.

Others may also find it of interest.

Someone else wrote and webbed a much longer reply.