Flyting Was Medieval England’s Version of an Insult-Trading Rap Battle | Atlas Obscura

Flyting from Norse folklore and Old England should be incorporated into American politics. (Photo: Public Domain/WikiCommons)

Imagine a world that had swapped its guns for puns and its IEDs for repartees. Such a planet is possible if only those in power would manage their conflicts with flyting, the time-honored sport of verbal jousting.

Flyting is a stylized battle of insults and wits that was practiced most actively between the fifth and 16th centuries in England and Scotland. Participants employed the timeless tools of provocation and perversion as well as satire, rhetoric, and early bathroom humor to publicly trounce opponents. The term “flyting” comes from Old English and Old Norse words for “quarrel” and “provocation.” ‘Tis a form of highly poetic abuse, or highly abusive poetry—a very early precursor to MTV’s Yo Mama and Eminem’s 8 Mile.

“Court flyting” sometimes served as entertainment for royals such as Scottish kings James IV and James V. The most famous surviving exchange is The Flyting of Dunbar and Kennedie, which was performed in the early 16th century by…

Source: Flyting Was Medieval England’s Version of an Insult-Trading Rap Battle | Atlas Obscura

Why Exactly Did the Vikings Flee Greenland? | Atlas Obscura

Sometime around the 10th century AD the Vikings traveled north to settle in Greenland. They lived there for around 500 years and then exited the region en masse. Why they left still remains a mystery, but a paper published today in Science Advances throws a wrench in one of the more popular explanations.

One Viking exodus hypothesis puts climate change front and center. The Vikings traveled to Greenland during a period known as the Medieval Warm Period, a chunk of time–between the…

Source: Why Exactly Did the Vikings Flee Greenland? | Atlas Obscura

Muslims in Latvia

The refugee crisis in Europe has also affected Latvian society. Latvia as EU country is taking part in handling the crisis and has agreed to accept to host at least 776 refugees from Syria, Libya and other countries. Meanwhile the country is already holding a large number of refugees who managed to cross the Latvian border. They are from various Muslim countries including Afghanistan. In following years Latvia might experience an influx of Muslim immigrants in form of refugees or work seekers. Although by no means Latvia is one of the most desired places for Middle Eastern refugees, on the contrary Latvia with its economic issues and rough climate is one of the lest desired. Also the knowledge and contact between Latvia and Middle Eastern Muslim countries have been limited. But, that does not mean that this will be first time in Latvian history when a new ethno-religious community will emerge. Muslims in small numbers have lived in Latvia since 19th century and their presence has…

Source: Muslims in Latvia

In 1963 A Turkish Man Knocked Down A Wall In His Home… What He Found Next Was Unbelievable.

Originally posted on Trendingly.

It’s exciting enough to hear of people finding decades-old newspapers when decorating, but this tale takes things to a whole other level (quite literally!).

In 1963 a man in the Nevşehir Province of Turkey was renovating his house when he made an incredible discovery. Upon knocking down a wall, he discovered a secret room which led to something pretty spectacular…

This man had inadvertently stumbled upon the ancient underground city of Derinkuyu.

Derinkuyu was a multi level underground city that started out as a few caves, finally reaching its spectacular completion in the Byzantine era.

Its purpose was to offer protection during the Byzantine wars which raged from 780-1180.

Approximately 60m in depth, the city could accommodate 20,000 people as well as livestock.

The city boasted stables, cellars, storage rooms, chapels, and even…

via In 1963 A Turkish Man Knocked Down A Wall In His Home… What He Found Next Was Unbelievable.