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13 August 2017

Book Review: The Basque History of the World

The Basque History of the World: The Story of a NationThe Basque History of the World: The Story of a Nation by Mark Kurlansky
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Ugh.

Couldn't get through this one, even though I have a hearty desire to know more about Basques and Spanish/French history.

Tedious.

Before I quit reading, right in the middle of a convoluted section that started several pages earlier declaring it would explain the Basque beret but getting bogged down in so much poorly-told history that I threw the book down in disgust, I did learn a couple of things.

Basques have the highest percentage of Rh negative blood in the world. Other places originally occupied by Cro-Magnon man, like the Atlas Mountains in Morocco and the Canary Islands, also have high percentages of Rh negative.

The Basque language, Euskera, is not related to any other language. It has no Indo-European roots. At all. Which is remarkable because once those Indo-Europeans started spreading, they left virtually no European language untouched.

The only defeat Charlemagne ever suffered was at the hands of the Basques in 778. The story is told in the Song of Roland.

I wish I could hang in and keep learning. But I just can't read this darn book any more.



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