The Roman Empire ruled most of Europe the Middle East and all the Mediterranean lands by the First Century BC: Julius and Augustus Caesar. Around 300, Constantine the Great reunified the then divided-into-three Roman Empire and relocated the capitol to Byzantium, now renamed Constantinopolis (Constantinople in English). Eventually, the Empire became divided the into separately governed Western Roman Empire, ruled from Rome, and the Eastern Roman Empire, ruled from Constantinople.
In the last 400's C.E. the Western Roman Empire Collapsed. The Eastern Roman Empire made a couple attempts to restore it by it was too expensive to do. The Eastern Roman Empire, based in Greek culture went on until the Turks overran it in 1453. The Turks thought the Greek phrase "in the city" was the name of Constantinople and they thought they were retaining the name with their corruption of the Greek phrase: Istanbul.
After the 400's, Europe entered the "Dark Ages" and a number of European Kings tried to gain power over others by courting the support of the Vatican, the Roman Catholic City-State within Rome. In the late 400's to early 500's Clovis, the King of the Franks (basically modern France) converted his people to Christianity. The most success of a Pope-supported state was that of Charlemagne (Charles the Great) who established and ruled the Holy Roman Empire from 800 to 814.
Europe was mostly a set of small nations where about a dozen made up Italy, dozens made up Germany, and the powers were mostly what became Austria and, from 1100 - 1500's, the Polish-Lithuanian Empire that ruled most of Eastern Europe - 1/3 of the entire continent.
During the Dark Ages, Christianity faded or was never established in many European countries and it's not well appreciated today how it was missionaries from Ireland who restored Christianity to much of Europe: Poland still celebrates the Irish Missionaries bringing Roman Catholicism to Poland around the year 1000.
After the Bubonic Plague wiped out at least 25% of Europe's population in the 1200's and 1300's, the value of human labor rose so much that guilds and other organizations that demanded better pay/hours and raised the standard of living arose, ending the "Feudal System." The Renaissance followed in the 1400's and 1500's.
Up to that point, it was the Arab world that had maintained high learning: the Greek and Roman classics and math. Most of the words we have in math, like Algebra and Zenith are Arab words.
Before the Renaissance, Europeans were still using Roman Numerals. The Moors in Spain began spreading their knowledge to the European Christians who didn't understand the numerical concept of zero: they were told, "Just draw a hole."
As the Renaissance took hold and the skills and learning of Europeans soared, Europe took a leading place in the world that is still in place to some extent.
Sweet potatoes contain a compound called chlorogenic acid and also contain iron compounds. When diced, the surface gets exposed to oxygen in the air and it reacts with the acid and iron to form the dark spots.
When I was in Catholic School, we were taught French in 8th Grade because one of the nuns was from Quebec.
So when I got to high school I figured I'd have a leg up sticking with French.
I didn't know it until I got to college, but in the pre-computer-translator days American Chemistry Majors were required to pass a fluency test (or a 202-level college class) in French, German, or Russian so there would be a pool of chemists who could translate articles in the main 3 foreign languages od chemistry journals.
So I lucked out.
We've been having extremely heavy thunder showers for several afternoons/evenings in a row.
Tonight, I finished taking evening-care of my on-vacation brother's family's dog Jake and bearded dragon Rango, and left for home just as it began to rain. I went half a block and I needed highest-wiper-speed. I got to the main road and night had descended suddenly and cars were going 25 mph where the speed limit's 40. I took my time driving home - crossing paths with two drivers with no headlights on - they probably hadn't needed them 10 minutes earlier.
I should do some yard work today but we've got a couple more days with highs forecast in the 80's, not 90's, and I'm very pleased and relieved today that my new fence won't cost as much as I thought. So I'm going to sit on my butt and watch TV.
I agree. When Christopher Kimball was running America's Test Kitchen, he pointed out over and over that there was much more taste in 80:20 ground beef that you lost when you hit 90%.
I had to add a significant amount of oil to the pan to fry 90%+ ground beef and eventually figured I might as well let 80% fry mostly in its own tasty fat.