1560

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The Tulip Arrives in the Netherlands *

Persians have been cultivating the tulip since the 10th century. After the conquest of Constantinople, tulips were introduced to the city and the Turks wear them in their turbans. The ambassador from the Holy Roman Emperor to Constantinople sends a few of these magnificent flowers back to Vienna. He names the flower "tulip" because he mistakes the Persian name for "turban" as the name of the flower. "Tulip" sounds good to him, and the flowers look like small turbans so the name sticks. This year the tulip arrives in Holland for the first time and will eventually reach Britain in 1578. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
I use to think that tulips came from Holland. Holland came into the picture in the 1600s when certain varieties of tulips from Holland became so scarce that it created a craze called Tulip Mania. This was similar to collecting Beanie Babies or Tickle-Me Elmo dolls except that some folks would sell their house to buy a single tulip bulb. By 1637 tulip bulbs became an investment, but it was crazy... like a race car driver investing in a salad dressing company and expecting to make millions! (Actually, Paul Newman's company has made $400 million to date with "Newman's Own" on an investment of $40,000 and the motto: 'Fine Foods Since February' but like an investment in tulips... markets can be fickle.) When the market for tulip bulbs fell, people holding that bag of bulbs lost everything. Tulip Mania remains one of the most significant economic bubbles in history. [8] [9]

Inviting in the Invaders

Livonia (which is present day Estonia and Latvia) has gotten itself into a real pickle. It started a war with Ivan the Terrible and Ivan is now beating the tar out of them so they have run to Denmark for help. The new King of Denmark is not very experienced in foreign affairs so he agrees to buy a large portion of Livonia from their Catholic bishop for 30,000 thalers (rhymes with dollars) which is over $425,000 dollars. (FYI: the word "dollar" comes from the word "thaler.") The King of Denmark then appoints his Lutheran brother as the 'Catholic' bishop. (Insert favorite explicative here.) Livonia needs cash but all they are doing is drawing outsiders into this war. Ultimately, Ivan the Terrible will lose, but Livonia will be trampled by foreign aristocrats trying to salvage something from a losing investment. [10] [11] [12]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
The general rule is that foreign armies that come to help, end up helping themselves. This is why protestors shouted 'No blood for oil' during Gulf War I. Given the history of war it was reasonable to assume that oil would be part of the spoils of war. It didn't happen but US forces remained in Saudi Arabia. US forces have yet to leave Afghanistan despite promises from President Obama. To be fair, he probably doesn't want all those people murdered on his watch as we leave. I understand the reason why we went into Afghanistan. I don't understand why we didn't leave once it became apparent that we hadn't found Osama bin Laden. Limited objectives turned into nation building and nation building is never ending. The USA is still in Europe. When will the Marshall Plan end? I think Europe is on its feet now.[13]

The 'Pirates of the Caribbean' is not a Disneyland Ride

Piracy in the New World is due to economic pressure and the official monopoly that Spain and Portugal exercise over this massive and rich region. The terms for that monopoly were renegotiated a few times but those chickens are coming home to roost. Smuggling is rampant and Queen Elizabeth the 1st of England is having Spanish ships waylaid for their cargoes of gold, silver, tobacco and sugar. This is a dangerous business and there is a fine line between piracy (which is private robbery) and privateering which is a war on the logistics of one's opponents by third parties. In other words... official robbery. With France at war with Spain as well, the Spaniards must watch for French Corsairs along the coasts... especially those hitting Havana right now. This is just the beginning. Piracy in the Caribbean won't get to extreme levels until the mid-1600s. [14] [15] [16]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Regarding the Disneyland ride, I've never seen rape, pillage and murder seem like more fun! Hoist the Jolly Roger! The movies make the Disney story look a little more frightening, but there is still the air of frivolity about it. Yet when Somali pirates are boarding freighters and luxury yachts off the African coast, all of a sudden pirates are the vicious murderers and thieves that they really are. These freighters are not allowed weapons because of restrictions at their ports of call. This means warships must accompany them as escorts. This is expensive but how does a port distinguish between a merchant plying the seaways for trade and a warship looking for opportunities to attack coastal towns? In the 1500s, there was no way. [17] [18]

This Year on Wikipedia

Year 1560, Wikipedia.

See Also

References

* The asterisk in the section header indicates that it was read on the podcast.
  1. Tulip - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 16 April 2015. “Cultivation of the tulip began in Persia, probably in the 10th century.”
  2. History of tulips in Holland. Holland.com (2015). Retrieved on 19 April 2015. “Originally cultivated in the Ottoman Empire (present-day Turkey), tulips were imported into Holland in the sixteenth century. When Carolus Clusius wrote the first major book on tulips in 1592, they became so popular that his garden was raided and bulbs stolen on a regular basis. As the Dutch Golden Age grew, so did this curvaceous and colorful flower. They became popular in paintings and festivals. In the mid-seventeenth century, tulips were so popular that they created the first economic bubble, known as 'Tulip Mania' (tulipomania). As people bought up bulbs they became so expensive that they were used as money until the market in them crashed.”
  3. A small history of the Tulip in Holland. HollandHistory.net (2015). Retrieved on 19 April 2015. “The tulips, originally from Persia & Asia Minor, found their way to Constantinople, where they were first seen (in 1554) by de Busbecq, ambassador of Emperor Ferdinand I at the Court of the Sultan, who sent seeds or bulbs to Europe.”
  4. Tulip mania - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 19 April 2015. “At the peak of tulip mania, in March 1637, some single tulip bulbs sold for more than 10 times the annual income of a skilled craftsman.”
  5. The history of the Tulip. Bakker Spalding Gardening Company (2015). Retrieved on 19 April 2015. “Tulips arrived in Europe as contacts between the Austrian Hapsburgs and the Ottoman Empire grew in the mid-16th century. The first tulip is said to have arrived in Great Britain, from Vienna, in 1578. And 45 years later,”
  6. Tulip Mania - The Economic History of Tulips. OrchidsPlus.com (2015). Retrieved on 19 April 2015. “Tulips are native to Persia, where the local population commonly displays them in their turbans. Europeans first discovered this flower and asked what they were called. The Persians gave them the Persian name for turban, which is &lquot;tulip&rquot;. This confusion began the great storied history of Tulips.”
  7. definition of tulip. American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language (2011 publisher = Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company). Retrieved on 19 April 2015. “Tulips were brought to western Europe from the Ottoman Empire sometime in the same century, and the English word tulip ultimately stems from Ottoman Turkish tülbend, meaning 'muslin, gauze,' and also 'turban.' The Turkish word for a turban seems to have been used for the flower in western European languages because a fully opened tulip was thought to resemble a turban, the typical headwear of men in the land where tulips originated.”
  8. Newman's Own - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 19 April 2015. “The brand started with a homemade salad dressing that Newman and Hotchner prepared themselves and gave to friends as gifts. The successful reception of the salad dressing led Newman and Hotchner to commercialize it for sale. After that initial item, financed by Newman and Hotchner ($20,000 each as seed money), pasta sauce, frozen pizza, lemonade, fruit cocktail juices, popcorn, salsa, grape juice, and other products were produced. Newman's Own Lemonade was introduced in 2004 and Newman's Own premium wines in 2008. Each label features a picture of Newman, dressed in a different costume to represent the product. The company incorporated humor into its label packaging, as in the label for its first salad dressing in 1982, 'Fine Foods Since February'.”
  9. Cars. IMDb (2006). Retrieved on 19 April 2015.
  10. Terra Mariana - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 16 April 2015. “In 1559 the Bishop of Ósel-Wiek and Courland Johannes V von Münchhausen sold his lands to King Frederick II of Denmark for 30,000 thalers.”
  11. Gold Price for 816,000 grams of silver is $425,558.08 at 0.52 per gram. goldprice.org (2015). Retrieved on 19 April 2015.
  12. Thaler - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 19 April 2015. “From these earliest 'thaler' developed the new Thaler -- the coin that Europe had been looking for to create a standard for commerce. The original Joachimsthaler Guldengroschen was 1 ounce in weight (27.2 g).”
  13. spoils - definition of spoils. The Free Dictionary (2015). Retrieved on 20 April 2015. “Goods or property seized from a victim after a conflict, especially after a military victory.”
  14. Piracy in the Caribbean - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 16 April 2015. “Piracy flourished in the Caribbean because of the existence of pirate seaports such as Port Royal in Jamaica, Tortuga in Haiti, and Nassau in the Bahamas.”
  15. Treaty of Tordesillas - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 20 April 2015. “The treaty effectively countered the bulls of Alexander VI but was subsequently sanctioned by Pope Julius II by means of the bull Ea quae pro bono pacis of 24 January 1506.[8] Even though the treaty was negotiated without consulting the Pope, a few sources call the resulting line the Papal Line of Demarcation.”
  16. Timothy J. Shannon (2002). The Beginning of Piracy 1450. Gettysburg College. Retrieved on 20 April 2015. “By the 1560's skirmishes, between Spanish forces and English interloping fleets, was already a large part of the countries commercial relationship with each other. However the Spanish, who had become quite sick of English infidelity, dealt them such a blow at San Juan de Ulua, that the English stopped their illegal trade. The defeat further inflamed already well established Protestant, English hatred of the Catholic Spain and Portugal and the investors that had taken losses wanted reparations.”
  17. Three Yachtsmen Killed by Somali Pirates were Hams. arrl.org (February 22, 2011). Retrieved on 20 April 2015. “According to the US Central Command, the boat was in the Indian Ocean, headed toward the Somali coast when on Friday, the 58 foot yacht sent a distress signal. The boat was being trailed by US Navy forces; it was about a two day sail from the Somali coast. They had begun tracking the yacht after being alerted that a Danish naval helicopter had seen the Quest off Oman under the pirates' control. The Central Command oversees US anti-piracy operations in the Indian Ocean.”
  18. A Guide to Somalia's Modern Day Pirates. About.com (2015). Retrieved on 20 April 2015. “According to a recent BBC report, Somali pirates seized a record 1,181 hostages in 2010, and were paid many millions of dollars in ransom.”

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