2. Michael Wood's History of India has reached the Moghul Emperors. Why are golden ages always so brief? What is it about a golden age that makes it unsustainable? The Emperor Akhbar was an extraordinary man who created- or started to create- a society remarkable for its justice and religious tolerance. Elizabeth I- writing from "these islands at the edge of the world" (is that really how she saw her England?)- commended his "humanity". How many rulers in any age have been commendable for their humanity? His successors weren't up to the mark and the great enterprise slid into corruption and social division, leaving the door wide open for the people from the islands at the edge of the world to march in and institute their own age of iron. Wood will be dealing with them next week.
3. My daughter's article about growing up around witches has been published and is available online here