Roman and Mediaeval History, Illlustrated Travel Journals, Mediaeval Literature, Geology

  David Gemmell Dead

Fantasy writer David Gemmell died two weeks after a bypass heart surgery, at the age of 57. Here's the BBC link:

This is sad news. I'm sure he had some more books in him to share with his readers, that now will never get written. Like the third book of his Troy trilgoy.

I don't know what his personal belief is, but may the Source guide him to whatever place he wants to be. My condolences go to his wife and two children.

  Some sort of holidays

Here's where I hang out a lot.

The Oderteich was built in 1715-1722 and thus is the oldest reservoir in Germany. It came into existence because of the vivid mining in the Harz in order to drive many technical equipments in the surrounding mines.

The Oderteich can hold 1,700,000 m3 of water and until the end of the 19th century was the largest artifical lake in Germany.

The water comes from the surrounding moors and has a brownish colour. The Oderteich lies in the higher mountains of the Harz range, and the water remains cold even in summer (I think it has about 17°C now), the ice breaks late in spring, this year it lasted until the end of April.

It is my favourite bathing place not only in the Harz but in Germany. The surroundings are National Reservation and the area therefore not touristically developed. You have to walk - and carry everything - half a mile across tree roots and stones from the parking lot to a part of the shore that is a bit like a beach. Many tourists prefer warmer water with easier access what makes the Oderteich are rather quiet place to hang out.

Though I still find cigarette butts. Bloody damn smokers, go burn in hell.

It's an hours drive from Göttingen, something I don't mind right now. With 30°C in Göttingen, the Oderteich with its cold water and cool breeze is too tempting. In the swimming centre near my house you can cross the water walking on bodies. No fun. That one is nice in winter when the indoor pools have open until 11 pm.

So, that's why I'm not spending much time commenting on my blogroll right now. *grin*

In the beginning of August, my father and I are going to visit the Roman museum at Kalkriese where the German Cherusci and some other tribes made mincemeat* of three Roman legions in 9 AD. I hope I won't get a plotbunny out of it since Iris Kammerer already wrote a trilogy about the time and German / Roman conflicts. But one can never be sure.

We'll stay in the town of Osnabrück** which has a Mediaeval Cathedral, a 17th century town hall and more old buildings. The town was founded by Charlemange and site of the final battle against Widukind, seat of a bishopric since the early 9th century, in the 13th centruy member of the Hansa, it was one of the places - besides Münster - where the Westphalian Peace Treaty was negotiated and signed, so there's a nice lot of history tied to it.

Next will be the Canossa exhibition in Paderborn. Paderborn, a place I know well, is another town founded by and connected to Charlemagne; it held a famous exhibition about the great emperor in 1999. Henry IV at Canossa ties in with Osnabrück because Bishop Benno II (whose castle at Iburg is just outside the town) was at the side of the emperor as he stood before pope Gregor VII.

Looks like there'll be some more history posts here this summer. Geez, and I still have some Magdeburg pics and unsorted background info from last summer I should post.

* The descriptionof the battle in the article relies a bit heavily on Tacitus whose version of doesn't remain undisputed, but it's not glaringly wrong.

**The Hotel Walhalla shown in the pics on the site is where we'll stay. Gotta love those old houses

The Lost Fort is a blog based on my travels in Germany, the UK and other places, with essays on Roman and Mediaeval history illustrated with lots of photos of old castles, cathedrals, Roman remains, and beautiful landscapes. You may also find the odd essay about geology or Mediaeval literature.

All texts (except comments by guests) and photos (if no other copyright is noted) on this blog are copyright of Gabriele Campbell.

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Location: Germany

I'm a blogger from Germany with a MA in Literature and History which doesn't pay my bills, so I use it to research blogposts instead. I'm interested in everything Roman and Mediaeval, avid reader and sometimes writer, opera enthusiast, traveller with a liking for foreign languages and odd rocks, photographer, and tea aficionado. And an old-fashioned blogger who hasn't yet gotten an Instagram account. :-)