We've mostly been talking about historical inaccuracy up to now, but I notice that Doctor John's original post was really about judging historical events by the standards of today. Something I think we do rather too much. There's a good example of it in this thread and in others.
As George Fox said of the gospels, you can't really understand historical writings unless you can get into the spirit of the people who wrote them. In some cases, that means understanding mean-spiritedness, of course ...