I know in my warnings on the right over here, —> I say that I am a space science geek, but I left out that I am also a history geek. I really love history, especially The period starting with the rise of the Greeks to about the beginning and into the the “Dark ages” in Europe. No kidding I read history books for fun. I like learn as much as I can about one group of people, then work my way through all their neighbors. I am currently working my way around the Greek Peninsula (which means almost island in Latin, learned that one the other day. Gold star for me for remembering it)
While history books are great things, one of the greatest things about the rise of the internet has been the absolute explosion of resources available to amateur history lovers like me. I want to talk about three of those now.
First, I want to recommend a Greek history course offered though iTunes U. (It is an Open Yale Course so I am sure you can get it here) It is called Ancient Greek History by Professor Donald Kagan. This is a straight forward college level course that covers Greek History from the Bronze age until they are conquered by the Romans. The Audio is mostly good, though Dr. Kagan has kind of annoying throat clearing that he does about every 90 seconds. If you can get past that, this a wonderfully informative course.
Next, There is a great podcast called The History of Rome. This is an on going project that covers Rome from it’s Mythological beginnings right up to the final curtain. Or at least I think he will one day get to the final curtain, as I said it is a on going. There are nearly 200 episodes That have come out about once a week now for the last few years. The episodes are about 30 minutes long so easy to digest, and wonderfully in depth. They cover every leader great and small along the way, and how they influenced one of the greatest civilizations in the western world. (I think you will see the current pattern pattern here, Greece, Rome, Persia and Egypt are next but not in this review.) The audio quality is great, the historical facts as far as I have checked them are spot on, and when he does make a mistake he corrects it the following week. If you like Roman History at all, this is a podcast worth listening too. He has a great sense of humor that make the podacst that much more fun to listen to.
PS if you read my article “5 Reasons to Write an Essay for The Mad Scientist Anthology” my little tidbit about Caligula came from this podcast.
Last, but certainly not least is Dan Carlin. He is a former news broadcaster from California. He now runs a history podcast call HardCore History He brings many things to the table. His style and his quality are second to none. He picks a time in history and with a laser’s focus tells you the most interesting details about that time in history. His series on the Eastern front of World War II and the one on the Punic Wars were just fabulous. The audio quality is great, (being that his is a former broadcaster that only makes sense.) His choices of topics are fascinating. Even if you don’t like history, I think you would like this podcast. The back issues (anything older than say 6 months) are I think $2 each, but well worth the price considering the quality of the material.
So there you have it. Three great sources for very interesting history.