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Jake Leigh-Howarth

Jake Leigh-Howarth is a journalist and researcher from the UK with 8 years experience in music, travel, news, and historical journalism. He grew up in rural North Yorkshire where he developed a lifelong fascination for nature, mythology, folklore and history. 

He holds a masters degree in Modern History from the University of Leeds, where he specialized in the travelogues of Western visitors to Soviet Central Asia. Inspired by the very same travelers, he moved to Bolivia in April 2021 where he also teaches as an ESL teacher and maintains a personal blog about his experiences. 

Some of his favorite historical periods include the Tamerlane Empire, the Mongolian Empire, and the Eleusinian Mysteries of Ancient Greece. Aside from writing, his other passion is making music with his ongoing experimental rock project Pandelume.


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Third Century Crisis Invasion of the Goths ( Kristian/ Adobe Stock)

Goths On The Move: The Third Century Barbaricum Invasion of the Roman Empire

In 238 AD, after at least two generations with no mention of the Goths, denizens of the territories above the Roman province of Dacia (modern Romania), showed the first signs of a barbarian...
Cynegils of Wessex by John Speed (1611) (Public Domain)

The Shadowy Kingdom Of Gewissae, Britain’s First Kings

Gewissae was an Anglo-Saxon kingdom that ruled much of southern Britain from the fifth to the seventh centuries as the island began forging a new identity in the aftermath of Roman occupation...
Bust of Fransisco de Orellana (Ricardo Algár/Adobe Stock) Amazon rainforest (William Perez/Adobe Stock)

Francisco Orellana’s Accidental Discovery Of The Amazon

Among the daring exploits of those early Spanish conquistadors intent on claiming the New World for their own, none are as dramatic as Francisco Orellana’s perilous nine month journey to the Amazon...
The bombardment of Tripoli on 3 August 1804, by Michele Felice Cornè (Public Domain)

The Barbary Wars: America’s Most Successful Foreign Intervention

Since its foundation in 1775 the United States has become well known for its tendency to intervene in foreign countries when its national security is threatened. But while much has been written and...
Irish Liberators In South American Independence Wars

Irish Liberators In South American Independence Wars

For much of its history Ireland was just one of a legion of realms conquered by the British Empire in a morally reprehensible quest of world domination. The road to independence was long and arduous...
Polish Legionnaires Fighting Along The Affranchi For The Black Independent Nation Of Haiti

Polish Legionnaires Fighting Along The Affranchi For The Black Independent Nation Of Haiti

The Haitian Revolution of 1791 to 1804 is commonly remembered as the most successful slave revolution of all time, resulting in the establishment of the first black nation of independence in the West...
The body of Leo V is dragged to the Hippodrome through the Skyla Gate. Varangian Guardsmen, an illumination from the Skylitzes Chronicle; many if not most members of the Varangian guard were English after the 11th century (Public Domain)

Nova Anglia, The Forgotten Anglo-Saxon Enclave In Ukraine

Tucked away in the outer regions of the Byzantine empire was a pocket of towns with a series of unusual names that have puzzled academic and armchair historians alike, for among the most unexpected...
La Vengeance des fils d'Antar by Nasreddine Dinet (1898) (Public Domain)

The Zanj Rebellion, Revolt Of African Slaves Against The Abbasid Caliphate

Tucked away in an obscure chapter of medieval history, the Zanj rebellion, which raged between 869 to 883 AD, originating in the city of Basra in present-day Iraq, remains relatively unknown to the...
Mural of Turkic cavalry, Beshbalik (10th Century)(CC0)

The 751 AD Battle Of Talas Deciding The Fate Of Medieval Central Asia

In the eighth century, as Charlemagne forged his European empire, and the Vikings emerged from the bowels of Scandinavia as the most fearsome raiders of their time, fierce battles raged...
The Forgotten Arab Raid On Rome In 846 AD

The Forgotten Arab Raid On Rome In 846 AD

Throughout its millennia long existence, the illustrious city of Rome has been invaded many times, and changed hands just as frequently. The Gauls, Goths, Vandals, and Normans have all been...
A printed map from the 15th century depicting Ptolemy's description of the Ecumene by Johannes Schnitzer (1482) (Public Domain)

Terra Australis The Fabled Continent Of Antiquity’s Antipodes

For nearly 2,000 years, right up until Captain James Cook’s second voyage to the Pacific in 1775, geographers debated the existence of Terra Australis, a mythical landmass to the south-east said to...
The envoys of the Roman Pope attend Alexander Nevsky by Henryk Siemiradzki (1870) (Public Domain)

Alexander Nevsky – Medieval King Turned Russian Propaganda Tool

Nestled deep within an obscure crevice of Russian history, the tale of Prince Alexander Nevsky and his battle against Western crusaders at first appears as a highly interesting if half-forgotten turn...
The First Meeting of Vortigern and Rowena/ Renwein painted by William Hamilton (Public Domain)

The Shadowy Reign of Vortigern, The King Who Gave Away Britain

Vortigern was a semi-mythical fifth century king most famous for inviting the Saxons to Britain to help him vanquish the invading Picts of Scotland. A disagreement compelled the Saxons to break their...
Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca: The Extraordinary Adventure of a Compassionate Conquistador

Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca: The Extraordinary Adventure of a Compassionate Conquistador

Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca was a Spanish explorer, born in 1490 in the town of Jerez, a place famed for its sweet wines. Although his name, which meant ‘Cow’s Head,’ was amusing to some, it placed...
Artist’s impression of a woman caught up in the crusades. (  master1305/ Adobe Stock)

The Exploits Of Margaret Of Beverley, Caught In The Crusades

The Medieval Crusades were a series of important historical events largely told through the perspective of men. Almost all the contemporary commentators, crusader knights, and Christian generals and...
Cadmus, the first Greek hero and founder of Thebes, fighting the dreaded dragon in a painting by Hendrick Goltzius. Source: Hendrik Goltzius / Public domain

Cadmus: The Amazing Tale of the First Greek Hero and It’s Horrible End

Out of all the pantheons, the exuberant deities of the ancient Greeks are perhaps the most iconic of all. For generations, imaginations have been enflamed and inspired by the sumptuous mix of high...