Mickey Mouse Monday!

Today the most popular mouse in the world celebrates his birthday along with millions of others! He made his way onto the screens spreading smiles and laughter for years to come. 

This made me think of how impactful we can be, and how our talents and creativity can spark a whole new world. Walt Disney, the creator of Mickey Mouse and many more characters that we cherish, all started by simply doing what he loved. He has bottled happiness and spread it worldwide, and it all started with a mouse. 

Let Mickey Mouse be a remembrance that we all have to start somewhere. Develop your strengths and work them toward a goal. We are still drawn to this mouse after 91 years because of what he reminds us of and all the feelings that go along with it. 

Find your Mickey Mouse!

Something Wicked This Way Comes – Grim Reaper

Tomorrow is Halloween! Just in time for one last creature of the dark analysis…

We have talked about ghouls, zombies, and mummies but today we will talk about the lord of death…the grim reaper. His job entails collecting the souls of the people when their time on earth is done. He is known to be very diligent in his job and always meets his deadlines. He is someone you will not want to see. 

Origins of the Grim Reaper appear in the fourteenth century when Europe was overcome by the Black Plague. During this time many artists began painting skeletons with deadly weapons and eventually the black cloaked figure became the first recognizable Reaper. It is said that his dark costume and curved scythe (the large weapon he carries around) may have been inspired by the plague doctors who wore dark shrouds and bird-like masks to protect themselves from breathing bad air. 

However, the name Grim Reaper did not appear until the nineteenth century. Getting its origins from the popular nickname for death “the Grim’. 

His special abilities include being able to separate the soul from the body, and then becomes a guide to help you find your way to the next realm. 

Today the Grim Reaper remains to be a favorite Halloween costume, and has appeared in novels and films. He has become the world’s most iconic personification of death. 

Spook up your next novel with a Grim Reaper character!

Write on!

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Something Wicked This Way Comes – Mummies

As Halloween approaches we still have plenty more creatures to talk about. While this one may not do a lot of talking on their own, mummies have been portrayed as wrapped up mutes both on screen and in ancient folklore. 

When people think of a mummy they usually envision a human form wrapped in layers of tissue from head to toe shuffling towards you. While that may be true enough, mummies come from a more interesting history. 

The process of mummification was popular in many civilizations including Incan, Australian, African, and Aztec but is commonly known for its performance in Egypt. Each ritual varied by culture, but all consisted of honoring the body of the dead by preservation. 

The Egyptian mummy process for royalty and the wealthy included: 

  • Washing the body
  • Removing all organs except the heart and placing them in jars
  • Packing the body and organs in salt to remove moisture
  • Embalming the body with resins and essential oils such as myrrh, cassia, juniper oil and cedar oil
  • Wrapping the embalmed corpse in several layers of linen

The mummies of the pharaohs were placed in a sarcophagus and buried in elaborate tombs with things they would need for the after life such as wine, food, jewels, perfume, and anything they particularly liked. 

According to folklore, disrupting a mummies tomb leads to death. One of the most popular stories is the disruption of King Tut’s tomb by British archaeologist Howard Carter in 1922. While it was an extraordinary find it did come with unexplained deaths by some members of his crew, but Howard Carter was spared from the so-called curse. 

Mummies then became more mainstream by hitting the big screen in in 1932 with the movie The Mummy with Boris Karloff, where they instantly debuted as monsters who cannot feel pain and the most effective way to kill them is to be set on fire. 

From there we have seen them in a countless number of movies and TV shows and they have become a popular costume for Halloween. 

Let the stories of the ancient world spark your own writing creativity. Maybe mummies will be featured in your next book or short story! 

Every story counts. Happy Spooktober!

For more information about Hershman Rights Management visit our website!

Foot Traps

caltrops.jpgCaltrops

 

  • This was a weapon used to maim or kill infantry, and/or others not shielded with armor. Caltrops specifically had two or more sharp nails. In the past, caltrops were used against foot troops and cavalry. Today, caltrops are used against wheeled vehicles. We’ve all watched high speed chases!
  • The name of this device if from Latin. The original meaning is “foot-trap.”
  • Caltrops have been used in heraldry. Mainly as charges in the shields!

Top Tier Polearm

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Glaive

  • It is a European polearm. It’s decorated with a single-edged blade at one end of the pole. The blade is similar to that of an axe head – not a straight blade or as curved as cutlasses or swords.
  • Some of the blades were crafted with a small hook somewhere on the blade-end of the pole. Sometimes on the opposite end of the blade. This was used to catch riders. (This is a running theme in our weapons of choice!)
  • The glaive was a highly rated weapon in the polearm class/other hand-to-hand combat weapons of the time. This rating occurred in 1599.

All Aboard!

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Italian Boarding Sword

  • The Italian boarding sword was a tool used by sailors or pirates. When ships collided and one crew needed to get aboard another vessel, this sword was used to cut rope with ease or hack closed doors.
  • Although considered a tool, it was also used as a weapon. It could pierce a victim and the fighting style is very similar to fencing (except with a shorter blade.)
  • We are accustomed to seeing sailors and pirates with curved blades (cutlasses for example) but this particular sword has a straight blade.
  • It is also called a Genoese boarding sword because of a captain who hailed from the Republic of Genoa.

A Ceremonial Club

What is so incredibly special about the weapon we are talking about this week is…it’s still in use! Maybe not for battle, but for ceremonial purposes and the pictures found online are of these traditions! Carry on…


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Rungu

  • This weapon originated in East Africa. It was used in battle and in hunting originally.
  • It also serves as a ceremonial tool for male warriors of the Maasai culture. The ceremonial rungu are decorated in beads sewn in by the local women.
  • It’s similar in shape to a club, mixed a bit with a baton. The end of the club was typically a heavy knob or a heavy ball.

The Iron Claw

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Zhua

  • Zhua literally translates to claw. And this weapon represents that entirely. It is an iron claw attached to a 6 ft. pole. Sometimes it bears a weight at the bottom to be used as a bludgeon.
  • Some of the better reasons to use a zhua in battle is to disarm someone of their shield or grabbing riders off their horses.
  • This is an ancient Chinese weapon and was a known weapon of Sun Tzu, a warrior and general.

Whipping a Blade

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Urumi

  • It’s a sword. It’s a whip. It’s very easy to hurt yourself when wielding this weapon.
  • Before dabbling into the art of the urumi, one is supposed to have knowledge with a sword. It’s meant to be the last weapon learned in a certain type of martial arts.
  • This originated in South India/Sri Lanka in the Sangam Period, or the 3rd – 5th century BCE.
  • The Urumi is best used against multiple enemies, if swarmed in battle.

Hand-Wood

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Macuahuitl

  • If you couldn’t tell from the pictures above, the macuahuitl is a club with blades made from obsidian (okay, we didn’t expect you to know that.) Obsidian was used in creation since it was known to produce a sharper blade. It came in two different sizes: a larger club and a smaller.
  • The name is derived from the Nahuatl language (a native tongue of Mesoamericans.) It can be translated to “hand-wood.”
  • Clubs are usually a close-combat weapon, so this weapon falls in that category as well. It was distributed throughout Mesoamerica. Aztecs, Mayans, Mixtec, and Toltec were some of the civilizations who utilized this weapon.
  • This weapon could inflict a fatal laceration. Or used in ceremonial matters.