d.m. Jacqueline de Romilly

From Le Monde (tip o’ the pileus to Dorothy King):

L’académicienne Jacqueline de Romilly, spécialiste de la civilisation et de la langue grecques, est morte samedi à l’âge de 97 ans, indique, dimanche, son éditeur Bernard de Fallois. Née le 26 mars 1913 à Chartres (Eure-et-Loir) d’un père professeur de philosophie et d’une mère romancière, Jacqueline David a très vite été première : deux fois lauréate du Concours général, ouvert pour la première fois aux femmes en 1930, elle sera la première femme reçue à l’Ecole normale supérieure en 1933, puis à l’agrégation de lettres en 1936.

Professeur de lycée à partir de 1939, elle est nommée maître de conférences (1949), puis professeur titulaire (1951) à la faculté des lettres de Lille, avant d’être professeur de langue et littérature grecques à la faculté des lettres de Paris (1957-1973).

Elle a été la première femme professeur au Collège de France pour chaire “La Grèce et la formation de la pensée morale et politique” (1973-1984) puis la première femme élue à l’Académie des inscriptions et belles lettres (1975). Spécialiste de la civilisation et de la langue grecques, elle est l’auteur de très nombreux ouvrages sur cette période, notamment sur l’historien Thucydide, le théâtre d’Eschyle et d’Euripide et la guerre du Péloponnèse.

Jacqueline de Romilly, qui incarnait l’enseignement des études grecques classiques en France ainsi qu’une conception exigeante et humaniste de la culture, a écrit, en plus de 60 ans, de très nombreux ouvrages. En 1988, elle était devenue la deuxième femme élue à l’Académie française, après Marguerite Yourcenar. Elle en était la doyenne depuis la mort de Claude Lévi-Strauss en 2009. Membre correspondant étranger de l’Académie d’Athènes, elle avait obtenu la nationalité grecque en 1995 et avait été nommée ambassadrice de l’hellénisme en 2000.

“C’est une perte pour notre pays”, a réagi sur France Info Hélène Carrère d’Encausse, secrétaire perpétuel de l’Académie Française. “C’est une femme qui a porté toute sa vie la langue et la culture grecques parce qu’elle considérait (…) que c’était une éducation (…) à la compréhension de la liberté de l’individu, de l’attachement à la démocratie”, a-t-elle souligné.

“Elle a souffert énormément depuis quelques dizaines d’années de voir l’étude de cette langue décliner, et cela a été pour elle un immense chagrin”, a-t-elle ajouté, jugeant que le meilleur hommage à lui rendre “serait d’attacher plus d’importance désormais à la langue grecque dont elle a été le plus grand défenseur dans notre pays”.

In the Latest Explorator

Selections from my weekly newsletter … some I’ve blogged, some have many additional links, some I hope to get to eventually (and blog about):

================================================================
ANCIENT GREECE AND ROME (AND CLASSICS)
================================================================
They’ve buried Allianoi:

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=allianoi-completely-burried-in-sand-201\
0-12-13

More opeddish things about Pompeii (these vary):

http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/jonathanjonesblog/2010/dec/13/ovid-roman-\
sex-pompeii

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/14/arts/design/14pompeii.html
http://www.stuff.co.nz/travel/international/4466245/Crumbling-Pompeii-needs-urge\
nt-attention

http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1965417/pompeii_collapses_spark_criticism/i\
ndex.html?source=r_science

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hLZVR4IQeaIpn07gPCzjecQ-RjqA?\
docId=CNG.d17e4b4251cf887af9f26758f0b95e46.131

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6BC1NT20101213?feedType=RSS&feedName=scien\
ceNews

http://news.brisbanetimes.com.au/breaking-news-world/pompeii-collapse-forces-ita\
ly-into-heritage-debate-20101213-18v11.html

… and nine people are under investigation in regards to recent collapses:

http://au.news.yahoo.com/thewest/entertainment/a/-/entertainment/8526010/nine-in\
vestigated-over-pompeii-collapses/

http://www.adnkronos.com/IGN/Aki/English/CultureAndMedia/Italy-Nine-people-under\
-investigation-for-Pompeii-collapses_311414199688.html

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hbXPD3PpX_gDEG71vrcAPFKuTW-w?\
docId=CNG.fe1d0589886b23ad62bffe61357001df.571

From the Italian press:

http://napoli.repubblica.it/cronaca/2010/12/16/news/nove_avvisi_di_garanzia_per_\
i_crolli_di_pompei-10268764/?ref=HREC1-10

http://napoli.repubblica.it/cronaca/2010/11/06/foto/pompei_crolla_la_domus_dei_g\
ladiatori-8816475/1/

Concerns after a storm damages Caesarea:

http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/israel-antiquities-chief-caeserea-storm-dam\
age-a-national-disaster-1.330789

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3998013,00.html
http://www.theage.com.au/world/storm-batters-antiquities-20101216-18zk0.html
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/israel/8204323/Ruins-of-Cae\
sarea-in-danger-of-falling-into-the-sea.html

… and that big storm seems to be the same one which exposed a Roman statue
in Ashkelon:

http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/roman-statue-discovered-in-ashkelon-after-s\
torm-damage-1.330629

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1339051/The-sea-gave-Wonder-Israel-ancie\
nt-Roman-statue-buried-thousands-years-uncovered-storm.html

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/article.asp?edition_id=10&categ_id=4&article_id=1225\
72

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10694576&ref=rs\
s

http://news.yahoo.com/s/artinfo/20101215/en_artinfo/freed_by_a_storm_an_ancient_\
roman_maiden_appears_on_an_israeli_beach_1

http://uk.reuters.com/article/idUKTRE6BD3CW20101214
http://www.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/meast/12/14/israel.storm.statue/index.html?section\
=cnn_latest

http://photoblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2010/12/14/5648784-violent-storm-reveals-an\
cient-art-on-the-coast-of-israel-

http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/90001/90777/90854/7232331.html
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/15/ancient-roman-statue-unco_n_797110.html
http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/int/news/-/news/11999231
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-11995443
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/14/AR2010121404646.\
html

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/12/14/world/main7149503.shtml
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/141159
http://photoblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2010/12/14/5648784-violent-storm-reveals-an\
cient-art-on-the-coast-of-israel-?chromedomain=cosmiclog

http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/roman-statue-discovered-in-ashkelon-after-s\
torm-damage-1.330629

http://www.jpost.com/Headlines/Article.aspx?id=199422
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6BD3CW20101214
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-11995443
http://uk.reuters.com/article/idUKTRE6BD3CW20101214

A Roman-era farm site from Lowestoft:

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/roman_link_to_lowestoft_high_school_1_754632

Paul Cartledge and James Romm discuss Alexander the Great:

http://blogs.forbes.com/booked/2010/12/12/two-great-historians-on-alexander-the-\
great-part-one/

http://blogs.forbes.com/booked/2010/12/17/two-great-historians-on-alexander-the-\
great-part-two/

On the origins of the word ‘comet':

http://www.npr.org/2010/12/17/132141801/science-diction-the-origin-of-the-word-c\
omet

Reviewish/hypish sorts of things for Mary Beard’s Pompeii documentary
thingy:

http://www.physorg.com/news/2010-12-life-death-sex-sewage-roman.html
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/tvandradio/8199687/Pompeii-Life-and-Death-in-\
a-Roman-Town.html

http://www.guardian.co.uk/tv-and-radio/2010/dec/14/pompeii-life-and-death
http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/int/news/-/news/world-europe-11957923
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-11952322
http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/int/news/-/news/world-europe-11952322

What Stephen V. Tracy is up to:

http://www.theleafchronicle.com/article/20101215/NEWS01/12150314/1002/rss

Jeffrey Schwarz’ work on infant sacrifice in Carthage is one of Archaeology
Magazine’s
top ten stories of the year:

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-12/uop-ppc121510.php
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/news/pittsburgh/s_714150.html

Review of Sarah Ruden, *Paul Among the People*:

http://www.jsonline.com/entertainment/arts/112086879.html

Review of Caroline Alexander, *The War the Killed Achilles*:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2010/dec/18/war-killed-achilles-alexander-review

This week’s Schiff reviews:

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/Imagining+unknowable+epic+life/3999990/story\
.html

Some rather late repeat coverage of the most recent collapses at Pompeii:

http://www.artdaily.com/index.asp?int_sec=2&int_new=43054

More on that purported gladiator in the trash:

http://news.discovery.com/archaeology/gladiator-stabbed-tossed-as-trash.html

================================================================
OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST
================================================================
Latest daVinci ‘code’ has secrets hidden in the Mona Lisa’s eyes:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2010/dec/12/mona-lisa-eyes-model-identity

National Geographic’s top ten archaeological stories:

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/12/photogalleries/101214-best-of-20\
10-science-archaeology/

Archaeology Magazine’s top ten:

http://www.archaeology.org/1101/topten/

Some new-fashioned Pythagoras/Euclid bashing:

http://www.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/meast/12/17/old.babylonian.math/index.html

A woman among the Magi?:

http://www.stlbeacon.org/arts-life/books/106897-viviano-writes-about-a-woman-mag\
i

Elaine Fantham on assorted ancient holiday traditions:

http://www.npr.org/2010/12/18/132162107/Boars-Heads-And-Even-More-Ancient-Holida\
y-Fun

Review of Judith Resnik and Dennis Curtis, *Representing Justice*:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/16/books/16justice.html

Review of Jonathan Galassi (tr), *Canti*:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/19/books/review/Campion-t.html
================================================================
CRIME BEAT
================================================================
A somewhat minor bust (it seems) in Sparta:

http://www.ana-mpa.gr/anaweb/user/showplain?maindoc=9408405&service=142

Vandals have hit some more petroglyphs … this time at Agua Fria National
Monument:

http://www.azcentral.com/travel/articles/2010/12/17/20101217agua-fria-petroglyph\
-panels-vandalized.html

================================================================
NUMISMATICA
================================================================
I think we mentioned this Lava Treasure thing a few months ago:

http://www.numismaster.com/ta/numis/Article.jsp?ad=article&ArticleId=16391
================================================================
EXHIBITIONS, AUCTIONS, AND MUSEUM-RELATED
================================================================
An auction of a bust of Caracalla (maybe … possibly not as old as it
appears) fetched a higher price than expected:

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/life/7341445.html

cf: the impact of the Unidroit convention on auction prices:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/18/arts/18iht-melik18.html

UK Site With a Link to Claudius???

From EDP24 … an incredibly tenuous link:

An archaeological dig in Lowestoft may have revealed tantalising evidence of a Roman farm which could be linked to Emperor Claudius.

Archaeologists from Suffolk County Council believe they have found the remains of a Roman farm on land earmarked to become the new Pakefield High School.

A team of about half a dozen relic hunters have been working on the site by Pakefield Middle School since October and finished their extensive excavations on Friday.

Although the team are now compiling their results they believe some post holes may be evidence of a farm outbuilding such as a sheep shed dating from the Roman occupation.

And the archaeologists also found evidence of a clay quarry, which could have been used by the Romans to make pottery.

The Romans would have settled in the area after the conquest of Britain by the Emperor Claudius, who was famous for his stutter, and four legions of fearsome Roman soldiers in 43AD.

Simon Cass from the archaeological service field team who led the dig, said: “We appear to have some kind of evidence of a Roman field system.

“We are not talking about a swanky Roman villa here but more likely a small farm hold where a family of about half a dozen may have lived.”

Mr Cass and his team may have sympathised with the Roman farmer’s dislike of the British weather as the team of archaeologists had to dig in “Somme” like conditions during the excavation.

The evidence of a clay quarry may date from Roman up to medieval times.

To help prove the Roman theory, the team have sent clay and soil samples and seed remains off for testing. […]

Not sure how archaeologists might like being called “relic hunters” … I strongly suspect the “link” to Claudius that seems to be the “focus” of the article is pretty much entirely the journalist’s manufacture … it’s a Roman (maybe) farm; no need to sensationalize it.

 

This Day in Ancient History: ante diem xvi kalendas januarias

ante diem xvi kalendas januarias

  • Saturnalia (day 1) — major, popular festival in honour of Saturn with banquets, the wearing of soft caps (pilei), and general good cheer. Shops and schools were closed, gambling was legally permitted, gifts were exchanged and masters might even wait on their servants. Obviously this festival is often seen as a precursor to our modern-day Christmas celebrations …
  • 246 B.C.E. — the Torah is translated into Greek (obviously not in one day)

Pompeii Plot Thickens …

Interesting … AFP via the West Australian:

Nine people are under investigation for two collapses in the famous ancient Roman city of Pompeii that shocked the culture world last month, judicial sources said on Thursday.An ancient training centre for gladiators collapsed into rubble in Pompeii on November 6 and a wall protecting a home known as the House of the Moralist fell down on November 30, causing widespread international outrage.Among the people under investigation by prosecutors in nearby Torre Annunziata are the former director of the site and the current head of excavations, ANSA news agency reported. The two declined to comment.Pompeii was entombed by the massive eruption of the nearby Mount Vesuvius volcano in AD 79, but was partly excavated and attracts thousands of visitors every year to one of the best-preserved ancient sites in the world.But the UNESCO World Heritage site has fallen into serious disrepair in recent years. In 2008, Italy declared a “state of emergency” for Pompeii.

via Nine investigated over Pompeii collapses | West Australian.

 

 

This Day in Ancient History: ante diem xviii kalendas januarias

Portrait of Lucius Verus, co-Emperor with Marc...
Image via Wikipedia

ante diem xviii kalendas januarias

  • Consualia — a festival in honour of Consus which likely involved a similar celebration held on August 21 (i.e. horse races, chariot races, and garlanding of the steeds)
  • 337 B.C. — death of Timoleon (according to one reckoning)
  • 215 B.C. — assassination of Hieronymus, one of the tyrants of Syracuse (by one reckoning)
  • 19 B.C. — dedication of the Ara Fortunae Reducis
  • 37 A.D. — birth of the future emperor Nero
  • 130 A.D. — birth of the future co-emperor Lucius Verus

Classics and Wikileaks III

Marble relief of a poet, maybe Sophocles, Hell...
Image via Wikipedia

Interesting how Assange’s Classical background (apparently) is slowly leaking out … today’s excerpt comes from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer:

She said that, influenced by his mother, Assange came to love the Greek classics, including Aeschylus, Euripides and Sophocles, and that he read them to his own son, Daniel, who now works in software development.

Assange “found the writing very powerful. He knew that the literature of the ancient world provided a moral lens through which to view society, and a way to explore these issues with children while also entertaining them,” Dreyfus said.

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This Day in Ancient History: idus decembres

A portrait of Samuel Johnson by Joshua Reynold...

Image via Wikipedia

idus decembres

  • Rites in honour of Tellus, the earth goddess which perhaps included a lectisternium (a ‘dinner party’ at which images of the god(s) would ‘dine’ with participants) in honour of Ceres.
  • 405 B.C. — battle of Aegospotami (by one reckoning)
  • 304 A.D. — martyrdom of Lucy of Syracuse
  • 1783 — Death of Samuel Johnson

We might also note here something mentioned in Josephus (Ant. 14.8), which he places in the year 46 (I believe):

When Antipater had made this speech, Caesar appointed Hyrcanus to be high priest, and gave Antipater what principality he himself should choose, leaving the determination to himself; so he made him procurator of Judea. He also gave Hyrcanus leave to raise up the walls of his own city, upon his asking that favor of him, for they had been demolished by Pompey. And this grant he sent to the consuls to Rome, to be engraven in the capitol. The decree of the senate was this that follows: (13) “Lucius Valerius, the son of Lucius the praetor, referred this to the senate, upon the Ides of December, in the temple of Concord. There were present at the writing of this decree Lucius Coponius, the son of Lucius of the Colline tribe, and Papirius of the Quirine tribe, concerning the affairs which Alexander, the son of Jason, and Numenius, the son of Antiochus, and Alexander, the son of Dositheus, ambassadors of the Jews, good and worthy men, proposed, who came to renew that league of goodwill and friendship with the Romans which was in being before. They also brought a shield of gold, as a mark of confederacy, valued at fifty thousand pieces of gold; and desired that letters might be given them, directed both to the free cities and to the kings, that their country and their havens might be at peace, and that no one among them might receive any injury. It therefore pleased [the senate] to make a league of friendship and good-will with them, and to bestow on them whatsoever they stood in need of, and to accept of the shield which was brought by them. This was done in the ninth year of Hyrcanus the high priest and ethnarch, in the month Panemus.”

That little 13 there refers to a note in the Whiston edition of Josephus at the CCEL … here’s the skinny:

Take Dr. Hudson’s note upon this place, which I suppose to be the truth: “Here is some mistake in Josephus; for when he had promised us a decree for the restoration of Jerusalem he brings in a decree of far greater antiquity, and that a league of friendship and union only. One may easily believe that Josephus gave order for one thing, and his amanuensis performed another, by transposing decrees that concerned the Hyrcani, and as deluded by the sameness of their names; for that belongs to the first high priest of this name, [John Hyrcanus,] which Josephus here ascribes to one that lived later [Hyrcanus, the son of Alexander Janneus]. However, the decree which he proposes to set down follows a little lower, in the collection of Raman decrees that concerned the Jews and is that dated when Caesar was consul the fifth time.” See ch. 10. sect. 5.

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