JOB: Greek Art @ BU

Seen on Greek-Arch (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

Boston University’s Department of History of Art and Architecture
invites applications and nominations for a tenure-track position as
assistant professor of Greek art and architecture to begin September
1, 2011 (pending final budgetary approval). Ph.D. required; teaching
experience and publications preferred. The successful candidate will
teach four courses per academic year, usually two lecture courses and
two seminars, and conduct research in her/his area of specialization.
Applicants should send a cover letter, curriculum vitae, and the
names of three references no later than December 1, 2010, to
Professor Fred S. Kleiner, Chair, Department of History of Art and
Architecture, Boston University, 725 Commonwealth Avenue, Room 302,
Boston, MA 02215, fsk AT Supporting materials, unless requested
by the search committee, will not be returned Boston University is an
Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.

Citanda: The Social Network

Wired has a reviewish thing of The Social Network which begins thusly:

Mark Zuckerberg is many things, not least a student of the classics. He reads Latin and ancient Greek, and his personal motto is said to be Forsan et haec olim meminisse iuvabit, or, loosely translated, “Maybe one day we’ll look back on all this shit and laugh.” Lately, though, he’s probably meditating on another Latin phrase: annus horribilis. Because it’s been one lousy year for the 26-year-old CEO, despite (and also because of) the success of his dormitory-born company, Facebook, aka the most trafficked social-networking site on earth. His squirrely media appearances have been called Nixonian, his hoodie choices have been savagely and publicly critiqued. His occasionally Orwellian quotes have been obsessively parsed. He’s even been stalked by a Gawker paparazzo.

via Sex! Hackers! Embellishment! The Inside Story of the Facebook Movie | Wired.

… anyone know if the Facebook CEO really does have this Classics connection?

Citanda: Why You Should Read Thucydides

Daniel Drezner in Foreign Policy:

1) It will purge 300 from your system. The ancients were all about the purging, and this classic will help you void the non-so-classic film. True, the two stories don’t overlap all that much. And true, I like homoerotic goofiness as much as the next hetrosexual. That said, it’s a crying shame that far more people have seen that mockery of Greek history than read… any Greek history. Alas, even modern criticisms of 300 wind up infected with stupid and ignorant Thucydides references. So read some Thucydides and you can enjoy Gerald Butler’s abs Lena Headey’s abs 300 on a more refined, absurdist plane.

2) You will earn Star Trek street cred. Want to know where the Star Trek franchise gets the names for 90% of its obscure alien species? Look no further than Thucydides. Just one read and you’ll discover the source of the Cytherians, the Battle of Tanagra, and other names that will bore amaze your friends.

3) You will recognize some recurrent patterns in history. Thucydides will help one develop a better appreciation for life in 5th century BC, but it will really help one develop an appreciation for the aspects of human nature that are unchanged through time.

via The Peloponnesian War: it’s not just for snooty academics anymore | Foreign Policy.

… explanations of each (and more) follows in the article …

JOB: Classics Librarian @ Yale

Seen on various lists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

Classics Librarian

Classics Library

Yale University

Phelps Hall, 344 College St

New Haven, CT

Rank: Librarian I-III

Schedule: Full-time (37.5 hours); Standard Work Week (M-F, 8:30-5:00)

The University and The Library

The Yale University Library, as one of the world’s leading research libraries, collects, organizes, preserves, and provides access to and services for a rich and unique record of human thought and creativity. It fosters intellectual growth and is a highly valued partner in the teaching and research missions of Yale University and scholarly communities worldwide. A distinctive strength is its rich spectrum of resources, including more than 12.5 million volumes and information in all media, ranging from ancient papyri to early printed books to electronic databases. The Library is engaged in numerous digital initiatives designed to provide access to a full array of scholarly information. Housed in the Sterling Memorial Library and twenty school and departmental libraries, it employs a dynamic, diverse, and innovative staff of over 500who have the opportunity to work with the highest caliber of faculty and students, participate on committees, and are involved in other areas of staff development. For additional information on the Yale University Library, please visit the Library’s web site at

The Classics Library
The Classics Library, located adjacent to the Department of Classics, serves the research and instructional needs of the Department’s faculty and students, as well as the entire Yale community. For more information, please visit online at

Position Description

Reporting to the Director of the Arts Library, and in concert with Sterling Memorial Library’s Classics subject specialists, the Classics Librarian provides leadership for building print-based and online collections, provision of on-site library services, and library research education in support of the Classics Department’s academic program. Instills the highest service standards and administers the department’s resources to provide excellent services. Fosters a creative, collaborative, and team-oriented work-environment; and facilitates communication and coordination among other units of the Library. The Classics Librarian plays a lead role in maintaining the Classics Library’s web pages, facilitating design, and content planning. Working collaboratively with Library and systems staff, the Classics Librarian initiates new projects and explores innovative technologies to improve services as appropriate. Contributes expertise to improve coordination of service procedures, and understanding of reader expectations.


Plans, monitors and evaluates services of the Classics Library including: information services, document & Library Shelving Facility materials delivery, interlibrary loan, electronic and print course reserves, stacks maintenance, security and facilities maintenance, annual inventory, and the Classics Library web site. Supervises and coaches 5-8 student assistants; establishes, monitors and incorporates performance indicators to assess and improve the quality of services provided to the department; and participates in general planning for future programs and services of the Classics Library. Provides general oversight of the Classics Library web site including: facilitating design and content planning in coordination with other librarians and Yale Classics Library constituencies; routine maintenance; and coordinating with the Library Access Integration Services (LAIS) Dept. for web technology support and implementation of centrally developed standards. Works with vendors or other on-campus units that support Library operations, such as photocopying, print management, facilities maintenance, and security. Participates in the delivery of Classics reference and research education services.

Contributes to the development of system-wide policies and procedures, and continues to be professionally active both at Yale and in the field. May participate in and contribute to library long-term planning and is professionally active in library, scholarly, and/or academic organizations. Represents the Library and the University in the academic and professional community by serving on various committees and task forces. May be required to assist with disaster recovery efforts. May be assigned to work at West Campus location in West Haven, CT.


Master’s degree from an ALA-accredited program for library and information science and advanced degree in classics or related disciplines; or an equivalent combination of relevant experience and education. Appointment to the rank of Librarian II requires a minimum of two years of professional experience and demonstrated professional accomplishments appropriate to the rank, as well as ongoing engagement in professional development, research, or services. Appointment to the Librarian III rank requires at least five years of professional experience and demonstrated professional accomplishments appropriate to the rank.

Experience and success in supervising and leading in a unionized and diverse staff team environment. Excellent analytical, organizational, management, customer service, oral and written communications, and interpersonal skills. Experience with web design and development and electronic information resources. Ability to effectively build partnerships and promote the benefits of change in an academic culture that often values ambiguity, diversity of opinion, and historic precedent. Ability to work both independently and collegially in a demanding and rapidly changing environment and to effectively build partnerships and promote benefits of changes.

Preferred: Demonstrated ability with HTML and XML; reading knowledge of two or more Western European languages.

Salary and Benefits

We invite you to discover the excitement, diversity, rewards and excellence of a career at Yale University. One of the country’s great workplaces, Yale University offers exciting opportunities for meaningful accomplishment and true growth. Our benefits package is among the best anywhere, with a wide variety of insurance choices, liberal paid time off, fantastic family and educational benefits, a variety of retirement benefits, extensive recreational facilities, and much more. Applications consisting of a cover letter, resume, and the names of three professional references should be sent by creating an account and applying online at for immediate consideration – the STARS req ID for this position is 11002BR. Please be sure to reference #11002BR in your cover letter. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until position is filled.

Background Check Requirements

All external candidates for employment will be subject to pre-employment background screening for this position, which may include motor vehicle and credit checks based on the position description and job requirements. All offers are contingent on successful completion of a background check. Please visit for additional information on the background check requirements and process.

Yale University is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer. Yale values diversity in its faculty, staff, and students and strongly encourages applications from women and members of underrepresented minority groups

Mary Beard on Lost Authors

From the Guardian‘s book section:

Would it have been better had some surviving works of ancient authors been lost?

Classical studies are driven by the ambiguities of survival. It is not a question of what we have versus what we do not have (the surviving books of Dio’s History of Rome measured against the lost books of Tacitus’ – no doubt infinitely sharper – history of the last days of Nero). Classics, as a subject, engages in the curiosities, problems and discontents of survival. It builds on the puzzling, changing identifications of works that are transmitted via the scholarly hands of the monkish middle ages, or those dug up from the sands of Egypt. It makes us face how little we know about what the “survival” (or “loss”) of literature means.

Sometimes it’s clear enough. Diogenes, the second-rate, second-century AD epicurean philosopher, ensured his own survival by having his thoughts inscribed on the wall of his home city of Oenoanda in what is now Turkey. There was little chance of destroying that. But usually “survival” is a trickier question. Take the short essay “Constitution of Athens”, now attributed to the anonymous “Old Oligarch”. Is this a work of the Athenian renegade politician Xenophon (with whose works it has been transmitted in medieval manuscripts)? Or is it a weird rightwing tract by a not very bright anti-democrat of about the same period – that is, the late fifth century BC? (Moses Finley always used to say that the modern pseudonym “Old Oligarch” was the problem here: it made him sound like an engaging elderly pub-philosopher, when in fact he was the closest the ancient word came to a fascist – with the exception of Plato.)

Or think, rather differently, of the archaic Greek poetess Sappho. A few of her poems survive, brilliant enough to define the history of love poetry for the next two and a half millennia (“Phainetai moi . . .” as the best one goes in Greek, copied by the Roman poet Catullus in “Ille mi par esse . . .”). But maybe Sappho’s reputation has been helped by what we no longer have. Most of her output was, we fear, interminable marriage hymns for the young ladies in her entourage. Lost, and well lost, perhaps.

To think more widely (and not to forget that the origin of Christianity was in the Roman empire), what difference has it made that the four canonical gospels have been canonised as such – so effectively consigning the variants to the scrap heap? The recently published Gospel of Judas gives a hint of a very different tradition, and one in which – as never happens in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – Jesus actually laughs (with all the theological complexity that that involves – does God laugh?). Survival, or not, has theological implications and a theological history.

But the key example is that holy grail of classical scholarship – a holy grail because no one can agree whether it is lost or not – the second book of Aristotle’s Poetics (written in the mid fourth century BC). The first book of the Poetics deals with Aristotle’s theory of tragedy (the famous discussion of pity, fear and catharsis). The second book, or so we glean from other references in Aristotle, brought the reader back to comedy and to that tricky problem of laughter. The usual scholarly line here is to lament that this work did not make it through the middle ages. Umberto Eco’s novel The Name of the Rose (“spaghetti structuralism” according to Slavoj Žižek, but fun all the same) dramatised the disappearance of the last surviving copy: literally eaten as a subversive tract by a gloomy “agelastic” monk, before his whole monastery goes up in flames. And recently such leading scholars as Quentin Skinner have mourned its disappearance: if only we had Aristotle’s essay on comedy, writes Skinner, we would understand ancient laughter.

But has it disappeared? And what counts as disappearing? According to Richard Janko, valiantly reviving a (nearly lost) 19th-century theory, the weird little treatise “On Comedy” in a 10th-century manuscript (Tractatus Coislinianus, now in Paris, once on Mount Athos) is actually a summary of this lost work.

So is it or isn’t it? Scholarship has not gone with Janko. The essay in the Tractatus is a very mediocre little tract, and most likely – so the orthodox view goes – a jejune compendium of Aristotelian thought by a none-too-bright Byzantine monk. It includes, for example, some very plodding ideas of what makes an audience laugh (“silly dancing”, is one prompt to laughter). But could we see it differently? According to Michael Silk (no admirer of the intellectual power of lost Aristotle) we might actually think that, in all its mediocrity, this mediocre work was a reasonable summary of some very mediocre Aristotle – altogether not worth saving. Let’s not lament its loss.

Who knows? But this should remind us of the perils of survival (as the question asks us to reflect). Sometimes the best may not survive (and classical nostalgia always suspects that we have inherited some dross while losing some gems). But maybe (and this would be a simplified version of Silk’s position on the second book of the Poetics) what we have lost was second-rate all along. Perhaps the history of the transmission of classical texts has been a pretty efficient sorting mechanism: the survival of the fittest.

In a way it was summed up towards the beginning of Tom Stoppard’s The Invention of Love. The play’s “hero”, AE Housman, Cambridge professor and celebrity classicist, is going down to Hades from the Evelyn Nursing Home in Cambridge. He is delighted to interrogate Charon, the boatman taking him across the Styx, wanting to find out more about what happened in Aeschylus’ lost play, Myrmidons. Charon looks as if he can deliver. But the joke is that he only tells Housman the lines that Housman knows already, preserved in later quotations and no surprise at all.

The allure of survival turned out to be the survival of what Housman already knew. It complicates the idea of choice and loss.

via: ‘You may now turn over your papers’ Guardian

… other authors are asked different questions

Australasian Society for Classical Studies 2010 Proceedings

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

ASCS 31 [2010] Proceedings

Refereed papers from the 31st conference of the Australasian Society for Classical Studies

Edited by Dr Neil O’Sullivan (The University of Western Australia)

…. some very interesting items here (dm)

CONF: Edinburgh Classics Research Seminars 2010/11: Semester 1

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

Dear colleagues,

Please find below the Semester 1 programme of Classics Research Seminars at Edinburgh. All seminars take place on Wednesdays at 5 pm in the Sydney Smith Lecture Theatre, 2nd floor, Medical School, Teviot Place, unless otherwise stated. All are welcome to attend. For further information please contact Ursula Rothe (ursula.rothe AT

Semester 1:

29th September
Prof. WILLIAM HARRIS (Columbia)
‘Approaches to Roman poverty’

6th October
‘Herakles in the Odyssey’

13th October
Prof. JAN BREMMER (Groningen)
‘Ancient necromancy – fact or fiction?’

20th October
‘Herculean tasks: writing about Herakles in the 21st century’

3rd November
Dr. CALUM MACIVER (Edinburgh)
‘Rereading Longus’ Daphnis and Chloe’

10th November
Prof. THOMAS HARRISON (Liverpool)
‘Herodotus on Persian royal ideology’

17th November – 5.30 start!!!
Prof. DAMIEN NELIS (Geneva)
‘Vergilian futures in the Georgics’

24th November
‘Aspects of excavation and research in and around the Bronze Age Palace of Knossos’

Reading Odyssey’s Marathon2500 celebration

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

Dear Colleagues,

Phil Terry, the Director of the non-profit organisation, The Reading
Odyssey, has asked me to circulate this invitation to join in our
organisation’s activities, including a year-long celebration of the
anniversary of the battle of Marathon.

The year-long program has been designed by Paul Cartledge and The Reading
Odyssey, and includes free webinar/teleconference lectures and a monthly
Herodotus reading group (using the Landmark Herodotus text)

Please consider the following:
– Sharing this invitation with graduate students, undergraduates, other
faculty, friends and colleagues around the world (and any associations).
– Integrating Marathon2500 into your curriculum. Many professors are
integrating these lectures into their curriculum (or making one or more
optional for students).
– Joining the remote lecture network. Students and faculty are attending
together one or more of the lectures. Just let Phil know if you are
bringing a group together live and he will list your university or college
on the remote lecture network page (

I. Marathon2500 Lecture Invitation (webinar/phone-based)

We have designed 8 lectures with some of the top scholars to commemorate the
2,500 year anniversary of the Battle of Marathon. (We take the 2,500 year
anniversary to be in September 2011 but are commemorating Marathon for an
entire year beginning in September 2010.) As you can see below, these
lectures range from Paul Cartledge’s kickoff context-setting talk to Victor
Davis Hanson’s presentation on the life of a solider to Peter Krentz’s
detailed discussion on the battle itself (timed to the publication of his
new book "The Battle of Marathon") to John Marincola’s epilogue.

Registration for all 8 lectures here

or any individual lecture here:

1. Paul Cartledge, Cambridge/NYU, Tue Sep 28 @6pm ET, "The Context and
Meaning of the Battle"

2. Peter Krentz, Davidson College, Tue Oct 12 @ 4pm ET, "The Battle Itself"

3. Victor Davis Hanson, Hoover Institution, Wed Nov 10 @ 1pm ET, "Life of a
Soldier—Greek and Persian"

4. Thomas Harrison, University of Liverpool, Tue Jan 18 @ 1pm ET, "The
Persian Perspective"

5. Dean Karnazes, world-renowned ultramarathoner, Wed Feb 9 @ 1pm ET “The
Battle and Modern Sports”

6. Thomas Scanlon, UC Riverside, Tue Apr 5 @ 1pm ET “Sports in the Ancient

7. Robert Strassler, Independent Scholar, Tue May 10 @ 1pm ET “Herodotus and
the Invention of History” ,

8. John Marincola, Florida State University, Wed Jun 8 @ 4pm ET “Epilogue:
What happened after the Battle"

- – -

II. Herodotus Reading Groups

The Reading Odyssey, the nonprofit running Marathon2500, runs virtual
moderated reading groups on classics such as Herodotus, Thucydides, Xenophon
and others. For Marathon2500 we are running multiple small sections of
Herodotus. Small groups of 20 will meet by phone monthly to discuss each
book of Herodotus.

Please suggest to your students that they might consider joining a Herodotus
reading group with us.

Registration link:
Dates (via teleconference):Ӭ8pm New York timeӬMondays РOct 11, Nov 15,
Dec 6, Jan 10, Feb 7 and Mar 7, 2011

- – -
Sponsors of the Marathon2500 program include a range of technology companies
– Citrix Online, Constant Contact, Squarespace to the Embassy of Greece. All
of our sponsors are listed here:

- – -
III. Facebook and Twitter

Please also consider asking your students to become fans of our fledgling
Marathon2500 Facebook page and Twitter feed.



On behalf of the global volunteers of the Reading Odyssey, thank you for
considering our invitation to participate in Marathon2500.

CONF: Restoring the Acropolis of Athens

Seen on various lists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

Restoring the Acropolis of Athens – a study day at the British Museum

Friday 8 October 2010, 09.30–17.00

BP Lecture Theatre, British Museum

£40, Members and concessions £25, includes tea/coffee and buffet lunch

Since its formation in 1975, the Acropolis Restoration Service has studied, conserved, dismantled and restored the world famous monuments of the ancient Acropolis of Athens. The various stages of this colossal task have been meticulously presented and recorded in a series of conferences in Athens and their accompanying publications. Now that the current phase of restoration is in sight of completion, Professor Charalambos Bouras, President of the Service, and prominent members of his team have kindly agreed to share with a British Museum audience their unique experience and knowledge of the
Acropolis buildings.


09.30–10.00 Registration in the Clore Education Centre Foyer

10.00–10.10 Welcome by Dr Andrew Burnett, Deputy Director of the British Museum

10.10–10.20 Opening address by Dr Lina Mendoni, Secretary General, Greek Ministry of Culture and Tourism

10.20–11.05 Professor Charalambos Bouras, President of the ESMA: 35 years’ restoration works on the Acropolis

11.05–11.20 Coffee

11.20–12.00 Mrs Maria Ioannidou, Director of the Acropolis Restoration Service: Research and technology in the Acropolis restoration project

12.00–12.30 Mrs Evi Papaconstantinou, Chief Conservator of the Acropolis Restoration Service: The surface conservation of the Acropolis monuments

12.20–13.30 Lunch

13.30–14.00 Mrs Dionysia Michalopoulou, Civil Engineer in charge of the restoration of the temple of Athena Nike: The Athena Nike restoration project

14.00–14.30 Dr Tasos Tanoulas, Architect in charge of the restoration of the Propylaia: The Propylaia restoration project

14.30–15.00 Mr Nikos Toganides, Architect in charge of the restoration of the Parthenon: The Parthenon restoration project

15.00–15.30 Mrs Lena Lambrinou, Architect, Parthenon Restoration Project: Interventions past and present on the north side of the Parthenon

15.30–15.45 Tea

15.45–16.15 Professor Fani Mallouchou-Tufano, Member of the ESMA: The restoration of the Erechtheion

Programme subject to change.

Tickets are available online, from the Ticket Desk in the Great Court, or via phone +44 (0)20 7323 8181. For further information and online bookings, see http://blmcmsweb/BritishMuseum/whats_on/events_calendar/october_2010/restoring_the_acropolis.aspx

ED: Postgrad Latin Summer School 2011, University of Reading

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

University of Reading

Department of Classics

Postgraduate Latin Summer School 2011

Applications are invited for the Postgraduate Summer School in Latin hosted by the Department of Classics, University of Reading, UK.

The Summer School will run 18 July-19 August 2011 and is open to students who have graduated or are in their final year of undergraduate study. It is an ideal opportunity for those planning to do postgraduate work or to pursue a career in Classics teaching.

Students will be expected to have read to the end of section 3 of Reading Latin (or equivalent) before the Summer School begins. They will complete a course of study designed to enable them to engage successfully with unmodified Latin texts.

More detailed information, including instructions on how to register, is available on the website:

Please direct further inquiries to Dr David Carter (d.m.carter AT

JOB: Latin+ @ UIUC

Seen on various lists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

Position Description: The Department of the Classics in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign invites applications for a tenured position at the rank of Associate Professor or Professor in the area of Latin literature, beginning 16 August 2011. The successful candidate will be expected to engage in teaching at the graduate and undergraduate levels, to supervise graduate research and to pursue an active program of scholarly publication. Preference will be given to applicants whose interests are interdisciplinary and who combine expertise in Classical Latin literature with an interest in an area such as gender and women’s studies, literary theory or Mediaeval studies. Applicants must have a PhD in Classics or in an immediately relevant field and must present a record of publication and excellence in teaching sufficient for appointment with indefinite tenure at the University of Illinois. Salary is commensurate with experience. The University is noted for its extensive library holdings in Classics and related fields and for its museums, with excellent collections of ancient Mediterranean artifacts.

For full consideration, online application, including curriculum vitae and names of three referees, must be completed by 15 October 2010 at Short-listed candidates will be invited for campus interviews before the end of the calendar year. Inquiries should be addressed to David Sansone, Head, at <dsansone AT> or 217-333-7573.

The University of Illinois is an Affirmative Action / Equal Opportunity Employer and welcomes individuals with diverse backgrounds, experiences and ideas who embrace and value diversity and inclusivity (


Citanda: Pracititioners’ Voices – issue 2

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

Practitioners’ Voices Issue 2 ‘Translation, Rewriting and Staging: Scholarship and Creativity in the Reception of Greek and Roman Poetry and Drama’ is now available at

This edition of Practitioners’ Voices publishes interviews with poets, translators and theatre directors. It focuses on how they engage with Greek and Latin material in and through translation, rewriting, new writing and staging (including questions about translation to the stage as well as for the stage). The interviews reflect an increasing interest in how the work of scholars and practitioners is not only mutually informative but also interacts in the creation of literary and theatrical works. The boundaries between translation and creativity are increasingly recognised as porous. Furthermore, various aspects of these activities may interact in the work and careers of the individuals themselves.
The seven people interviewed for this publication represent a broad spectrum of types of engagement with Greek and Roman material and are:

  • Josephine Balmer, Poet and Translator
  • Maureen Almond, Poet
  • Oliver Taplin, Academic, Translator and Writer
  • Martin Wylde, Theatre Director Helen Eastman, Theatre Director
  • Michael Ewans, Academic, Translator and Director
  • Ian Ruffell, Academic and Translator

This Day in Ancient History: ante diem ix kalendas octobres

Augustus of Prima Porta, statue of the emperor...

Image via Wikipedia

ante diem ix kalendas octobres

  • rites in honour of Latona at the Theatre of Marcellus
  • Mercatus — those cupboards must have been really empty!
  • 484 B.C. — Birth of Euripides (?)
  • 480 B.C. — Athenian naval forces under Themistocles defeat Xerxes’ Persian force in the narrows of Salamis (one reckoning)
  • 63 B.C. — birth of Octavius, the future emperor Augustus
  • 25 B.C. — dedication of the Temple of Neptune (and associated rites thereafter)
  • 23 B.C. — restoration of the temple of Apollo in the Campus Martius (and associated rites thereafter)
  • 117 A.D. — martyrdom of Thecla

This Day in Ancient History: ante diem x kalendas octobres

RSC 0002a
Image via Wikipedia

ante diem x kalendas octobres

  • Mercatus — the Romans continue the shopping spree
  • 479 B.C. — the Persian general Mardonius is killed in the Battle of Plataea (source? … seems a little late)
  • 36 B.C. — the triumvir Marcus Aemilius Lepidus agrees to retire after losing all his military support to Octavian
  • 19 B.C. — another (less likely) date for the death of Virgil
  • 130 (129?) A.D.– birth of Galen (still not sure of the ultimate source for this date)
  • 259 A.D. — martyrdom of Digna and Emerita at Rome
  • 287 A.D. — martyrdom of Maurice and companions
  • 1999 — death of Chester Starr

This Day in Ancient History: ante diem xi kalendas octobres

Image via Wikipedia

ante diem xi kalendas octobres

  • Mercatus — stocking the cupboards after the ludi Romani
  • 490 B.C. — battle of Marathon (yet another reckoning)
  • 490 B.C. — the Athenian polemarch Callimachus dies during the Marathon campaign (contingent on the above, obviously)
  • 19 B.C. — death of Publius Vergilius Maro (more likely than yesterday)
  • 37 A.D. — the emperor Gaius (Caligula) is given the title pater patriae
  • 1st century A.D. — martyrdom of Iphigenia
Enhanced by Zemanta

This Day in Ancient History: ante diem iii kalendas octobres

Pompejus den Store, Pompey the Great, Ny Carls...
Image via Wikipedia
ante diem iii kalendas octobres

Enhanced by Zemanta

Colosseum Burning!

Interesting art thingy via Reuters:

Reuters/Alessandro Bianchi photo

Raging fire will appear to consume Rome’s ancient Colosseum in a dramatic art spectacle over the next few nights aimed at igniting debate on the fragility of Europe’s cultural heritage sites.

For artists Thyra Hilden and Pio Diaz, engulfing the vast Roman amphitheatre in virtual flames will be the culmination of a long-running project using video projections of wild fires to make landmark buildings appear to be burning.

“We wanted something to symbolize destruction and creation at once. We wanted to question whether something should exist or not and what the heritage means to us,” said Diaz.

“What would happen if you destroyed a museum or building, is the culture gone? Do we need to build it again or do we have the same culture as we had before?” he asked, as images of flames were projected from the Colosseum’s entrance arches, making it appear to burn from within.

The Colosseum, which first opened in 80 AD and housed bloody public spectacles including gladiator fights, mock sea battles and animal shows, is one of the most famous monuments from the ancient world.

But it has suffered due to neglect in recent years, prompting the cash-strapped Italian government to search for private sponsors willing to help pay for restoration work.

The urgency surrounding the site was highlighted in May when chunks of mortar plunged through a protective netting, and a string of collapses at the nearby forum have also raised fears about how long Rome’s ancient buildings can remain standing.

Hilden said the artists had always targeted the archaeological treasure as the stage for their show due to its cultural significance.

“The Colosseum in our eyes is the strongest symbol of Western culture,” she said. “When you put these manmade constructions, these icons under threat, it shakes our reality and roots.”

via: Virtual fire to rage in the Colosseum for art | Reuters

Assassin’s Creed in (Renaissance) Rome

This is very peripheral to our purview, but what the heck … my kid plays Assassin’s Creed and the forthcoming Brotherhood installment looks very interesting. The trailer has this one set in Rome and one sees some very interesting monuments throughout … my spiders brought this one back because of mention of the Colosseum (which Ezio seems to be leaping about in … not sure if all that was exposed in the early Renaissance), but I find more interesting the bit at the end, which reconstructs the interior of the Pantheon as a church … FWIW (and the music sucks):

Enhanced by Zemanta

Hail Spartacus! And Crassus! And MSU!

This is an interesting story … seems to come from Lansing, Michigan:

Hail, Spartacus!

No, that can’t be right.

Spartacus was a humble slave who broke out of gladiator school, gathered a slave army and fought the fat cats of imperial Rome. He wore burlap, probably was a socialist, and never pulled rank on his ‘brothers.’ It wasn’t his style to hail or be hailed.

So what did Cy Stewart yell at the top of his lungs?

“I could swear it was ‘Hail, Spartacus,’” Stewart said.

Through a haze of 51 years, Stewart, a criminal science professor at MSU, struggled to remember what he and 76,000 other Spartan football fans were asked to scream before the October 17, 1959, football game pitting MSU against Notre Dame.

Back when Stewart was a sophomore, a Hollywood publicity stunt gave MSU a strange distinction. Just before kick off, actor John Gavin (Julius Caesar) and a sound crew from “Spartacus” led the crowd through a series of noises to use on the film’s soundtrack.

“They wanted us to scream as loud as we could,” Stewart said.

Stewart and his 76,000 co-stars did yell the words “Hail Spartacus,” but not together.

“At 70 years old, cut me a little slack,” Stewart said.

Ed Busch, an archivist at MSU, ran across some memorabilia from the game this spring. He enshrined the papers in a display case at Conrad Hall to mark the 50th anniversary of the film’s release.

There you’ll find a press release from Universal Pictures containing Gavin’s prompt script.

“Yours will be the most thunderous offstage dialogue in the history of motion pictures,” thundered the press release. “Never before have the shouts and cries of 76,000 people been reproduced on the screen by 76,000 people.”

“It was fun,” Stewart said. “We thought it was kind of nice to have Hollywood come to Spartan Stadium for a movie called ‘Spartacus.’”

As “Spartacus” producer/star Kirk Douglas wrote in his autobiography, “It’s only natural for Spartacus to go to the Spartans for help.”

To settle Stewart’s mind, here is the role the Spartans played, according to the press release.

“Hail, Crassus!” was used in a scene where Romans suck up to their new dictator, played by Laurence Olivier.

Then Spartan fans switched sides to play the slave army crying “On to Rome!” and “Spartacus, Spartacus!”

In the film’s most famous scene, the defeated slaves are asked to identify their leader or be crucified.

In a heart-rending show of loyalty, they all get up and yell “I am Spartacus!” A tear runs down Douglas´ cheek in one of the classic moments in cinema. Spartan fans gave voice to that, too.

Finally, the MSU crowd was asked to provide “shouts and noises of an army in combat.”

“You had to get a little testosterone moving and scream as loud as you can,” Stewart said.

The instructions given the crowd tapped deeply into the Spartan spirit: “You are going into battle to win, giving voice to the same emotions you feel when your team comes on the field, confident of victory,” Gavin told the crowd. But he cautioned against anachronisms that would jolt the audience out of ancient Rome: “No yippees, no yays, and, please, no ´Charge!´ Just a roar of excitement.” There’s one more “Spartacus” principal who recalls MSU’s role in the film, and at 93, he didn’t ask for any slack.

“I remember well the Michigan State University cheer in ‘Spartacus,’” Kirk Douglas wrote in a letter to City Pulse last month. “It added vitality to the picture.”

“I can’t believe we are approaching the 50th anniversary of Spartacus,” he mused in the letter. “That makes me an old man.”

“Spartacus” was a landmark film for many reasons, including its resonance with the Civil Rights movement and open treatment of homosexuality. (Olivier seduces slave boy Tony Curtis in the bath.) It was also director Stanley Kubrick´s first mega-budget film, even though he later complained he wasn´t in full control.

The cast was one of the finest ever put together, with Douglas, Olivier, Curtis, Charles Laughton and Peter Ustinov, who won an Oscar.

The film also made history by giving on-screen credit to screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, then blacklisted for alleged communist ties.

Douglas won plaudits for his gentle, strong performance and hard work as producer, but he’s most proud of crediting Trumbo.

“To me, at this time, the most important by-product of ‘Spartacus’ is that we broke the blacklist,” Douglas wrote in the letter to City Pulse.

Back in 1959, Douglas wrote to MSU athletic director Clarence “Biggie” Munn, thanking him “for everything you did to make our acquisition of the sound track material for ‘Spartacus’ so easy and so pleasant.”

Douglas also refrained from taking any credit for the Spartans´ 19-0 victory.

“I would like to think that the ´Spartacus´ yells before the start of the game resulted in that happy score, but I guess all the credit belongs with Coach [Duffy] Daugherty and the team.”

50 years later, Douglas graciously sent another nod.

“All my best wishes to Michigan State University and to the readers of City Pulse,” Douglas wrote in August 2010.

Sticklers be damned: Hail, Spartacus!

via: The day the Spartans helped ´Spartacus´

Romani Ite Domum!

From the world of UEFA Champions League soccer this week comes an item of interest … here’s a little excerpt from Sports Illustrated:

The Union of European Football Associations said the banner reading “Romani ite domum” – Latin for “Romans Go Home” – was considered provocative.

The slogan references a scene in the movie comedy Monty Python’s “Life of Brian.” UEFA did approve the German fans displaying a “Life of Bayern” flag at the Allianz Arena.

… and UEFA’s reasons:

In a statement, UEFA said: “Anything that may cause offense to a fan base or ethnic group, and therefore pose a security risk, including banners or symbols, is carefully vetted.”

… I guess UEFA didn’t want the crowd to get all ‘Classical’ on Bayern’s collective posteriors …

via: UEFA bars Munich fans’ Monty Python sign, cited as ‘provocative’

Sadly, the Romani do seem to have gone home in this one, losing 2-0 on goals by Klose and Mueller. To console myself, of course, I did the expected watching of a fave scene (you knew this was coming):

Disambiguation II

As I gear up to clear up the backlog, I feel it’s necessary to mention that I am not associated with this Rogue Classicist blog (which seems to be by a person with a Classics background and a semi-similar taste in music as me) … another one with the same Rogue Classicist moniker which I previously disassociated myself with seems to fallen into desuetude …

CONF: Leeds Seminars

Seen on Classicists (please send any responses to the people/institution mentioned in the post, not to rogueclassicism!)

Classics Department Research Seminar

Wednesdays at 3pm
Room 101, Parkinson Building
University of Leeds


Semester 1

September 29th
David Kovacs    University of Virginia
Horace, Odes 1.1, 2.20 and 3.30

October 6th
Penny Goodman    University of Leeds
Urbis et orbis: the Boundaries of the City of Rome

October 20th
Joshua Katz    Princeton University
Cicero’s Elemental Beginning and other Examples of Greco-Roman Wordplay

October 27th
Jay Kennedy    University of Manchester
The Musical Structure of Plato’s Dialogues

November 15th
David Newsome    University of Birmingham
Imperial Transformations:
Movement and fora in the First Centuries BC and AD

November 24th
Thorsten Foegen    Durham University
Education, Morality and Politics in Vitruvius’ De architectura

Semester 2

February 2nd
Richard Hunter    Trinity College Cambridge
Plato and the Ship of State

February 23rd
Douglas Cairns    University of Edinburgh
A Short History of Shudders

March 2nd
Steven Green    University of Leeds
Manilius and the Politics of Astrological Discretion

March 23rd
Vasiliki Zali    University College London
Myth as Political Argument in Herodotus, Thucydides and Xenophon:
The Case of Athens

May 4th
Mark Humphries    Swansea University
Exemplary Rome and the Tyranny of Constantius

For more information, please contact Drs. Steven Green (S.J.Green AT or Regine May (r.may AT Everybody welcome!