kenodoxia: Aristotle on pure pleasures.
Madeline Miller: Myth of the Week: Arachne.
Scholarly skepticism FTW! The incipit of a brief item from the Washington Post:
The statue of the young woman was found in a goat pen outside Athens, and Culture Ministry archaeologists soon declared it a fine 6th-century B.C. original.
But on Tuesday the ministry said a more thorough examination has determined it’s a fraud. [...]
… In case you missed the original: Goat Pen Kore?
Just sayin’ …
The Aramaic Blog: A Little Bit More Perspective – A Demonstration.
XKV8R: The Official Blog of Dr. Robert R. Cargill: the first 3 words say it all: an unbelievable “discovery”.
History of the Ancient World: Culture and Power in Ptolemaic Egypt: The Museum and Library of Alexandria.
History of the Ancient World: “Rulers Ruled By Women”: An Economic Analysis of the Rise and Fall of Women’s Rights in Ancient Sparta.
The Telegraph ponders combining various traits in former prime ministers to create the perfect one … inter alia, ecce:
Harold Macmillan’s unflappability. It is essential for a prime minister to show grace under pressure and no one demonstrated this quality better than Macmillan, also known as “Supermac”. During the battle of the Somme he was severely wounded in the buttock and leg while leading a charge across No-man’s-land. After dragging himself to a shell hole, he passed the time until he could be rescued by reading Aeschylus’s Prometheus, in Greek, a copy of which he happened to have in his pocket. Whenever the Germans advanced he would stop reading and lie “doggo”, pretending to be dead. Once they had gone he would resume his reading.
- via: How to construct the perfect prime minister (Telegraph)
Martin Conde has a pdf of an item in today’s Il Messaggero (which doesn’t seem to be online) commenting on the discovery/work on a huge mosaic found deep in the bowels of the Oppian Hill which depicts (maybe) five ‘mysterious muses’ … it seems likely this is related to last summer’s find (also mentioned by Martin Conde): Apollo and the Muses Mosaic Found on the Oppian. I really can’t understand why this isn’t getting any English press coverage …
Just saw this on AegeaNet (classicsgasm!!!!):
I am happy to announce that after a delay of 20 years the Proceedings of the Congress “Archaeology and Heinrich Schliemann” (held in April 1990) have been finally published as an electronic publication through the website of AEGEUS-SOCIETY FOR AEGEAN PREHISTORY.
Among the articles you may see Sinclair Hood’s ‘Schliemann’s Mycenae Albums’ which includes a colour photograph of the well-known mummy found by Heinrich Schliemann in the Grave Circle A at Mycenae (published for the first time in a colour version); Dickinson’s article ‘Schliemann’s contribution to Greek Bronze Age archaeology’; new papers such as Lesley Fitton’s article ‘Sophia Schliemann and the discovery of Priam’s Treasure’, etc.
You may download all articles free of charge at:
You are very welcome to write a comment at the bottom of the webpage.
Dr Nektarios Karadimas
Cambridge News gives us a glimpse into how our favourite Cambridge Don spends her waking hours:
Mary Beard is Professor of Classics at Cambridge and a fellow of Newnham College. She is the Classics editor of The Times Literary Supplement, and author of the blog “A Don’s Life”, which appears in The Times as a regular column and is now available on Kindle. Her frequent media appearances and sometimes controversial public statements have led to her being described as “Britain’s best-known classicist”.
Her day involves biking round Cambridge, the BBC, Roman empire, not being a fan of Plato, and wondering why time has to be wasted researching research, plus a ginger beer instead of wine, which doesn’t go down too well
6am The alarm goes off – a bit over optimistically. I turn on Radio 4 and snooze till the 6.30 news, trying to pretend it’s a “lie in”.
6.30am Cat fed, coffee made, I’m sitting at the kitchen table dealing with the emails that have come in overnight. Sadly, email doesn’t stop with the British working day, and stuff from the US streams in overnight. I’ve been involved in an exhibition in California on ancient Pompeii, and we’re now planning the visitor audio-guide, by email. (The husband is understandably a bit grumpy that all I’ve done since I got up is stare at a screen).
7.10am There are other tasks that need shifting quickly – and some that can’t interfere with the “day job”. I’ve been making a series of documentaries for the BBC about ordinary people’s lives in ancient Rome, and we’re getting the voice-over commentary sorted. Every word counts, and it goes backwards and forwards between me and the director. It’s got to be absolutely correct – but not boring! We’re on something like the 10th version.
7.40am A night-owl student has emailed an essay (on the economy of the Roman empire) at 3am. I try to make all students get their work in by 6pm the evening before their supervision, but it never works. I read it quickly now (she’s written 5,234 words, my computer tells me!) so I can think out what will be most useful to discuss with her later today.
8.10am I have to be on the move. I don’t have breakfast (except for industrial quantities of coffee), and have got showering and dressing down to a speedy art, so I can check the email again and be on my bike for the Faculty of Classics where I do most of my teaching. It takes me about 15 minutes to get there – cycling along one of the prettiest routes to work that you could hope for.
8.45am I dump my things in my office, pick up anything waiting for me in my pigeon-hole (usually that’s more late essays that didn’t arrive electronically), and then I’m off to teach.
9am This morning I’m doing ancient Greek with two groups of students, for an hour each. We’re reading some of the philosophy of Plato, a book called The Crito. I’m not a huge fan of Plato – but the teaching is great. These smart students have all kinds of tricky questions about how to translate it, and what it all really means. The Crito is about whether you have a duty to obey the laws even if you believe they are wrong. It’s a question that speaks to them.
11am Straight after the Greek, I have an hour with a graduate student who’s just finishing her PhD. I’ve been reading her last chapter, and think it’s pretty much ready to be examined. We discuss career options, in a gloomy job market for academics.
Noon Then I have an appointment with a student from London. He’s thinking about a post-graduate course in Cambridge, working with me. So I guess we’re checking each other out a bit. I introduce him to some students who can fill him in on the student side of things – while I go to the common room for a coffee with a colleague visiting from France.
1pm I don’t do lunch any more (that sure helps you lose weight). So I squeeze in an hour in the library, checking out some new material on Roman slavery for a lecture I’m giving tomorrow.
2pm I’m chairing a meeting of our Faculty’s Research Planning Committee. Every four or five years there’s a major government assessment of the research we’ve been doing (now euphemistically called the “Research Excellence Framework”) and this takes months to prepare for (months we might better spend on research itself, I can’t help thinking). Today we’re discussing how to demonstrate the wider “impact” of our research. I hope my TV series will be useful here!
3.30pm Now it’s time for supervisions, with groups of two or three students discussing their written work (whether handed in promptly or not!). It’s one of the jewels of the Cambridge system, where you really make students think. I have three groups, each supposed to be an hour, on a range of subjects . . . the Roman economy, the sculpture of the Parthenon (we have some fierce arguments about whether the Elgin Marbles should go back to Greece) and democracy in ancient Athens (how much like ours was it?). I run over time, as usual.
6.55pm There’s post and the essays for tomorrow (most of them) waiting in my pigeon-hole. I pick these up, and bike home.
7.10pm Normally I would have a large glass of wine with the husband at this point. But we are “on Lent” (for health not religious reasons), so we rather miserably pour ourselves a pint of ginger beer, and get supper, before getting down to work again.
8.15pm First it’s an hour or so ploughing through the emails I didn’t catch during the day, then reading the students’ work for tomorrow. Radio 4 is on in the background.
11.30pm Blogging time. For the last six years or so, I’ve posted a blog twice a week for The Times Literary Supplement – giving a glimpse of university life, plus plenty of wry reflections on the ancient Greeks and Romans. I tend to write these late at night, but I’ve learnt not to actually press the “publish” button till the next morning. You’d be amazed how the rate of spelling mistakes and outrageous indiscretions increases after midnight.
12.45am Email check, a snatch of the early hours BBC 1 repeats (the ones they put out with sign language for the deaf), then bed.
- via: Mary Beard, Professor of Classics at Cambridge University (Cambridge News)