William the Conqueror got fed up with listings for “charming studios” on Craigslist so he launched a castle-building campaign in 1066.
2. Abelard and Héloïse.
Way before OkCupid, Abelard and Héloïse began a steamy correspondence in the 1100s when Héloïse was sent to a monastery for having an affair with her tutor Abelard. They were the celeb couple of the era; “Abeloïse,” maybe?
3. The Crusades.
Given the bloodshed, millennials probably didn’t love the Crusades when they began in 1095, but the series of religious conflicts certainly shaped world history and paved the way for the Renaissance.
4. The Tale of Genji.
Hopefully not considered a “red flag” favorite book of the time, Murasaki Shikibu wrote The Tale of Genji in 11th-century Japan. A tale of romance and aristocracy, it’s considered the world’s first novel.
Probably considered a “red flag” favorite epic poem of the time, the oldest manuscript of Beowulf was written around the year 1010.
6. Movable type.
We owe the printing press, newspapers, books, and basically THE INTERNET to a man named Bi Sheng who created movable type in 1040 C.E.
7. The law of sines.
Kids in trig class were thanking Muslim mathematicians when they discovered the law of sines around the year 1000 C.E.
8. Paper money.
The millennials of Song Dynasty China avoided credit card debt when they made ALL THESE RACKS and were the first in the world to print paper money in 1024.
Corgis have been the most adorable dogs in the world since they first appeared in an 11th-century manuscript. It reads, “OMG THIS DOG IS SO LITTLE AND CUTE LOL.”
10. Playing cards.
Before there was Temple Run or Candy Crush or even Microsoft Solitaire, playing cards were available in China since the year 1000.
Vikings discovered the Americas way before Columbus did (original hipsters of Europe?). They were a seafaring people from the late eighth to early 11th century who did a lot for exploration and trade.
12. Oslo, Norway.
Norwegian millennials enjoyed a high quality of life in the economic and trading hub since the capital’s founding in the year 1000.
Silk production kicked into high gear in 1090 when Qin Guan wrote a book on sericulture in Song Dynasty China.
14. The number zero.
By the ninth century in India, mathematicians dared to treat zero like any other number when they used it in practical calculations.
When they finally gave in and ordered Seamless in the 10th century, southern China gained true porcelain, which had been around in the north since the seventh century.
Chinese alchemists were searching for an elixir of immortality when they accidentally invented gunpowder in the ninth century.
The Chinese began DIY-ing their fireworks with sticks of bamboo packed with gunpowder in the 10th century.