Temple of Nemesis Found

From Thaindian:

Archaeologists have found traces of a temple built for the Greek goddess of divine retribution, Nemesis, during excavations in the ancient city of Agora in the Aegean port city of Izmir in Turkey.

According to a report in Hurriyet Daily News and Economic Review, Akin Ersoy of Dokuz Eylul University’s archaeology department and heading the archaeological excavations in the ancient city, said that there might be a temple built for Nemesis in the area.

“We found traces of such a temple during our excavations in Agora,” he said. “We want to concentrate our work to unearth the temple in the future,” he added.

This year’s archeological excavations have unearthed many important findings that belonged to the Ottoman era, including many pieces of Ottoman ceramics.

“There are several layers to be worked,” said Ersoy. “We will work on the Ottoman era first, followed by the Eastern Roman, Roman and then the earlier ages,” he added.

Ersoy said that it was during the excavation work when they found clues of a temple to Nemesis built in the ancient city.

“We think the temple is situated on the western side,” he said. “It might be under the Hurriyet Anatolian High School building. We hope to unearth it in coming years,” he added.

In Greek mythology, Nemesis was the spirit of divine retribution against those who succumb to hubris, vengeful fate, personified as a remorseless goddess.

Asterix at 50

The incipit of a piece in the Independent

A map of France is cracked by a Roman standard driven into the ground. To one side a magnifying glass focuses on a “Gaulish village” surrounded by four Roman outposts: Aquarium, Totorum, Laudanum and Compendium. Who would have thought – given such adverse circumstances – that one of that village’s most famous denizens, namely, Asterix the Gaul, would live to reach the grand old age of 50?

Alexander Statue from Alexandria?

The Egyptian State Information Service reports:

A statue of Alexander the Great has been discovered in the Egyptian coastal city of Alexandria, Governor Adel Labib said on Wednesday 7/10/2009.

Archeologists have suggested the statue was of Alexander the Great and it was uncovered during excavations at el-Shalalat Park in the city, he said.

The discovery was made by a Greek mission working in the city.

The statue is a “unique discovery” as it dates back to the Ptolemaic dynasty, said the head of the Greek mission during a ceremony at Alexandria National Museum.

Such a discovery will lead to the tomb of Alexander the Great, she ascertained.

Alexander the Great is widely credited with spreading civilization as he marched across what was then the known world.

The discovery draws controversy among archeologists, where some say the statue is of Alexander the Great and others believe it is a royal figure that requires further studies, said an aide to the secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.

Hmmm … sounds suspiciously like this previous announcement about a find in the same location… here’s a few more details on that one

Priapus on Krk?

From something called Croatian Villas:

Tourism on Krk Island, Croatia, could receive a boost after the discovery of a 2,000-year-old statue, reports the Croatian Times.

A figure of Priapos, a fertility god and protector of livestock and nature in ancient Greece, was found by two fishermen off the island’s southern coast.

Ivan Barbalic Gunga and Izidor Cubranic, who found the statue, said: “We do not want to keep it just for ourselves or to earn money from it. We want our little Priapos to become a real tourist attraction on Krk Island.”

Mr Gunga and Mr Cubranic took the 20 cm sculpture to the Croatian Conservation Institute in Zadar where it was cleaned and valued.

The bust, which is in the shape of a lamp, is thought to have been previously used as a symbol of luck for men who were told if they touched it their fertility would improve.

The Croatian Times version of the article includes a photo, but I’m not sure if it’s the item in question.

Rival to Portland Vase at Bonham’s?

The incipit of an item in the Antiques Trade Gazette:

SPECIALISTS at Bonhams have just announced that they have identified a magnificent Roman cameo glass vase, which may be the most important of its kind in the world.

Strikingly similar to the Portland Vase, one of the British Museum’s greatest treasures, it is larger, in better condition and with superior decoration, say Bonhams.

Chantelle Rountree, head of antiquities at Bonhams, said: “It is of major international importance. Academically and artistically it is priceless. Scholars will be evaluating this find for decades.”

The vase dates from between late First Century B.C. to early First Century A.D and stands 13in (33.5cm) high. Only 15 other Roman cameo glass vases and plaques are known to exist today.

These very rare vessels were highly artistic, luxury items, produced by the Roman Empire’s most skilled craftsmen. They are formed from two layers of glass – cobalt blue with a layer of white on top – which is cut down after cooling to create the cameo-style decoration.

Items of this kind were produced, it is thought, within a period of only two generations. They would have been owned by distinguished Roman families.

Until now, the most famous example has been the Portland Vase, held by the British Museum. This is smaller, standing at only 9in (24cm) high. It is also missing its base and has been restored three times.

The recently identified vase is also more complex than others of its kind, being decorated with around 30 figures and a battle scene around the lower register. By comparison, the Portland vase has just seven figures.

Bonhams’ experts believe that this magnificent artefact could rewrite the history books on cameo vases. Unlike the Portland Vase, it still has its base and lower register and will therefore add significantly to the archaeological understanding of these vessels.

The vase is thought to have resided in a private European collection for some time. The collector is a long-term client of Bonhams.

I can’t find a photo at Bonham’s or any more details (yet) but the description gives the impression that this is a hitherto unknown piece. Is it?

From Antiques Trade Gazette

From Antiques Trade Gazette

CFP: Windsor Classics Undergraduate Conference


The Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures in conjunction with the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and the Humanities Research Group of the University of Windsor is pleased to sponsor its fifth annual Classics Undergraduate Conference to be held on Friday, March 5 and Saturday, March 6, 2010. The conference will open on Friday with a keynote speech by Dr. Mark Munn from the Pennsylvania State University.

Undergraduate majors in Classical Civilization or related fields are invited to submit abstracts (of 300 words maximum) for a 15 to 20 minute talk on any aspect of ancient Greece or Rome. Please include name, year, and student number as well as a phone number or e-mail address with your submission, which is to be made to Dr. Max Nelson (who can be contacted by e-mail at mnelson AT uwindsor.ca). The deadline for the submission of abstracts is January 31, 2010. Notification of acceptance will be provided by February 15, 2010.

CONF: Oxford Ancient History Seminar Series

seen on the Classicists list:

The programme for this term’s ancient history seminar series at Oxford is as follows:

Centre and Region in the Hellenistic Mediterranean

13 Oct.

Dr Jonathan Prag (Oxford)

Epigraphic habits in the hellenistic western Mediterranean

20 Oct.

Dr Alex Mullen (Cambridge)

‘La Provence grecque’. Regional identities and language in Southern Gaul

27 Oct.

Dr Al Moreno (Oxford)

Hieron and Pontic-Aegean Networks

3 Nov.


10 Nov.

Dr Rebecca Sweetman (St Andrews)

Crete: Hellenistic seclusion to Roman network hub

17 Nov.

Prof. Vincent Gabrielsen (Copenhagen)

Economic dynamism and Aegean aristocracies: Hellenistic Rhodes and its network

24 Nov.

Dr Alicia Jiménez (Madrid)

Roman coins in a provincial context. The Republican army and the camps at Numantia (Soria, Spain)

1 Dec.

Dr Lorenzo Campagna (Messina):

Exploring social and cultural changes in the communities of provincia Sicilia. New perspectives from the study of urban landscapes

All seminars take place at 5pm in the ground floor Lecture Theatre of the Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, 66 St. Giles, Oxford OX1 3LU

Google map here: http://tinyurl.com/IoannouCentre

All welcome.

Please direct any queries to the organisers:

Alfonso.moreno AT magd.ox.ac.uk

Jonathan.prag AT merton.ox.ac.uk

This Day in Ancient History: ante diem iii idus octobres

ante diem iii idus octobres

  • Fontinalia — a festival in honour of the divinity Fons, who presided over springs and wells; such sources of water were festooned with garlands for the occasion
  • 54 A.D. — death of the emperor Claudius, purportedly succumbing to a plate of poisoned mushrooms dished up by his niece/wife Agrippina; dies imperii of Nero (son of Agrippina)