Biblical Archaeology Review 32:5, September/October 2006

Queries & Comments

I’m still delighted with BAR. It is enlightening, entertaining and informative. Some of the reader comments may lean to the negative side, but that’s inevitable. I don’t agree with everything you print either, but I certainly appreciate the opportunity to evaluate for myself the various sides BAR presents. Best of all, I learn more than I knew before I started reading.

Larry Graves Overland Park, Kansas

In Queries & Comments in the May/June 2006 issue, you asked why Britons drive on the left. It has nothing to do with the Romans, as your query suggests.

I grew up in England. This is what we were told at school: In the Middle Ages, maybe earlier, when roads were narrow and robbers or enemies might possibly be encountered, travelers outside of towns, on horseback, took to riding on the left so that the right hand (the sword hand for most people) faced oncoming riders, ready for self-defense if necessary.

This habit eventually evolved into a method of traffic control in cities and elsewhere. A similar idea is behind shaking hands with the right hand. Two sword hands clasped ensures safety.

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