Wednesday, 21 October 2015

From Rameses II to Henry V

 I don't know if anyone else ever takes any MOOCs. I've got into the habit of watching a video or two while I'm having a cup of coffee and a slice of home-made cake (this week's is Pear & Chocolate Loaf and is rather good, even if I say so myself; if you follow the recipe add a heaped teaspoonful of baking powder) and am finding them all very interesting. Obviously as a wargamer what one really needs is constant temptation to start up yet another period and MOOCs provide a steady stream of possibilities to be enthused over and then discarded when something better comes along. For example, I've just completed a short course on the ancient Near East which included much material on Kadesh plus the fighting techniques of the combatants. I hope that my willpower is strong enough to resist the lure of the massed chariots of Rameses II, but the best way to ensure that is so is by quickly moving on. It being October 2015 then where better to go next than Agincourt, and so I'm going to be taking a look here at a brief course being led by Professor Ann Curry to mark the 600th anniversary.


  1. I recently completed a similar course. Maybe it was even the same: Superpowers of the Ancient Near East? Although the course was superficial and not what I expected from an academic offering (I could expand on that topic but won't), it did make me want to begin my long accumulated yet long neglected Biblical project.

    1. Yes, it was the same one and yes I had very mixed feelings about it. On the plus side I started from pretty much no knowledge about relations between Egypt and its neighbours so it was an interesting introduction. I also rather enjoyed the objects from the Garstang Museum. On the other hand it didn't go into any depth and I didn't see the relevance of (and ignored completely) all the stuff about hieroglyphics, cuneiform and Tutankhamen's murder. And presumably anyone not British wouldn't have been as annoyed by the lead presenter's accent; he was a rather posh person desperately pretending not to be.

  2. That Agincourt course looks a good find. Thanks for posting the link.

    I see you can even award yourself a certificate. There can't be many opportunities to get a 'badge' for faffing about in this hobby ;-)