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Whether in prehistoric times, in the Middle Ages or today, society needs a scapegoat. By channelling its aggression on to a single victim, a community strengthens it cohesion.
Precisely 300 years ago, Daniel Defoe published Robinson Crusoe, the most successful adventure novel in literary history: the story of the shipwreck survivor stranded on a remote island inspired scores of other ‘robinsonades’.
How the modern-day police force evolved out of goods inspections at medieval markets and the expulsion of beggars from the nation’s territory.
Exactly 200 years ago, ‘Silent Night, Holy Night’ was performed for the first time. Thanks to its moving message and captivating melody, it is one of the world’s most popular Christmas carols.
Behind what in 2016 became reality lay over 100 years of planning. Funding issues, quarrels and a retirement stood in the way of enlarging the National Museum throughout the 20th century.