#Thelxinoe ~ Your Morning Salutatio for September 23, 2019

Hodie est a.d. IX Kal. Octobres 2772 AUC ~  25 Boedromion in the third year of the 699th Olympiad

In the News

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Greek/Latin News

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Laura joins David to talk about Greek Myth Comix, which started when she made an pact with one of her Classical Civilisation students to get back into drawing. She discusses her favourite graphic novel authors and writers, the difficulties in adapting the ancient world for modern audiences (and why she wasn’t a fan of the BBC show Atlantis), and when Greek Myth Comix got onto the front page of Reddit. Laura also chats about her work on the Amarantus and his Neighbourhood project from Cambridge School Latin, which aims to teach kids about life among the lower-classes of Pompeii.

In the limited amount of ancient history we have, many women have been swept under the rug. It’s difficult for historians to really know much about ancient women, as little could be written about them. In the book Agrippina: The Most Extraordinary Woman of the Roman World , author Emma Southon looks at one of the few Ancient Roman women that was written about. A mother of an emperor and eventual empress, Southen argues that historians may have it wrong about Agrippina. West Lafayette Public

In the rapid changing landscape of world history occurring in 11AD to 20AD, Paul K. DiCostanzo and Patrick Foote dive into the shocking rule and fall of Wang Mang’s Xin Dynasty, and give a closer look into the death throws of the Roman Republic under the rule of Augustus and rise of Tiberius….

Quintus Sertorius could lay claim to a position among the greatest generals of ancient times. A loyal Roman, who lost an eye defending the Roman frontier, fortune then pitted him against the Roman military machine and some of its premier commanders, including Pompey the Great. 

Having chosen the wrong side of the first civil war, he fought through it with courage and integrity, but at its conclusion he was forced to flee the purges of Sulla. He was then invited to command the rebellious barbarian tribes of Spain. By energy, force of will and genius, he captivated his men and turned the light, irregular troops into a force that smashed the Roman armies that were sent to bring the Spanish tribes back under the Roman yoke. After a series of campaigns, he gathered other Roman refugees and established a state that imitated that of Rome. Ultimately betrayed and murdered by the local aristocracy, the story of Quintus Sertorius, a man who swam against the tide of Roman history, has largely and unjustly been forgotten.

De fele quae cor patris mei exhilarat.

In episode four of Undeceptions, John Dickson speaks with Teresa Morgan, a professor of Graeco-Roman History at Oriel College, Oxford University about what life was like for the average person living on the outskirts of Rome at the time of Jesus. What did they believe and what shaped their ideas of the ‘good life’. And how did the arrival of Jesus change everything?

Book Reviews

Professional Matters

Alia

‘Sorting’ Out Your Day:

Today on the Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar:

If it should thunder, it portends a time of shortages during the winter.

… adapted from the text and translation of:

Jean MacIntosh Turfa, The Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar, in Nancy Thomson de Grummond and Erika Simon (eds.), The Religion of the Etruscans. University of Texas Press, 2006. (Kindle edition)

#Thelxinoe ~ Weekend Edition for September 22, 2019

Hodie est a.d. X Kal. Octobres 2772 AUC ~  24 Boedromion in the third year of the 699th Olympiad

In the News

In Case You Missed It 

From the Italian Press

Public Facing Classics

Greek/Latin News

Fresh Bloggery

Bingeworthy Past Podcastery

We’ve mentioned the Odyssey side from this series … the Iliad series is where it all began:

Landscape Modery

Book Reviews

Dramatic Receptions

Professional Matters

Alia

‘Sorting’ Out Your Day:

Today on the Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar:

If it should thunder today, it portends bad conditions and “spotted diseases” for the people.

… adapted from the text and translation of:

Jean MacIntosh Turfa, The Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar, in Nancy Thomson de Grummond and Erika Simon (eds.), The Religion of the Etruscans. University of Texas Press, 2006. (Kindle edition)

Barry Baldwin ~ I Love Lucian

Reprinted with kind permission of Barry Baldwin himself, who years ago had to endure yours truly as a student. Errors in transcription naturally accrue to the latter.

(But not Lucy – American readers will understand)

Steve Moore’s splendid article [FT276: 46-51] is my cue to offer more on Lucian (below), the author whom Lord Macaulay dubbed “The Voltaire of Antiquity” and Samuel Bristoe in his 1711 English translation as “The Darling Pleasure of Men of sense in every Nation”.

The Suda, a Byzantine dictionary-cum-encyclopedia (c. AD 1000, cf. my “Aspects of The Suda”. Byzantion 86, 2006, pp11-31) obituarises thus:

“Lucian of Samosata nicknamed blasphemer or slanderer, or rather godless, because in his dialogues be ridiculed everything to do with divinity. Early in his career, this fellow was a lawyer in Syrian Antioch, but, after failing in this, he turned to writing and churned out reams of stuff. It is said that he was killed by dogs, because he aimed his savage pen at The Truth, for in his ‘Life of Peregrinus’ he attacked Christianity and slandered Christ himself, the scum. Consequently, he paid an appropriate penalty for his ranting in this life, but in the life to come he will inherit with Satan a share of the Everlasting Fire” – early example of the killer review.

Being a dogs’ dinner was also the alleged fate of another irreverent Greek, the tragedian Euripides, noted with fortean details of the fates of Aeschylus and Sappho by Virginia Woolf in her essay “On Not Knowing Greek”.

Various Byzantine commentators amassed a total of 39 scurrilous epithets against him (cf. my “The Scholiasts’ Lucian”, Helikon 20/21, 1980/81, pp219-34, for complete inventory and references), ranging from ‘atheist’ to ‘boy buggerer’ to ‘the thrice-accursed’, this list frequently used of the ancient Greeks and others by Fort himself (eg Books, pp55, 151)

His supposed blasphemies earned Lucian place in the Catholic Index of Forbidden Books also evoking a Jesuit Opera  Lucianus Samosatenus Infelix Atheus, produced on 3 September 1766 at Regensburg by the Lyceum und Gymnasium Societatis Jesu – there’s a copy in the British Library.

An image problem, then, in pious quarters. Mainly because of his pamphlet (comparable in viciousness to Alexander) aimed at Peregrinus Proteus. This worthy (cf. my Studies in Lucian, Toronto, 1973. passim), after a career in adultery, boy-fucking, strangling his sexagenarian father “for living too long” – shades of the Stones’ ” What a drag it is. getting old” in “Mother’s Little Helper” — fomenting Greek anti-Roman uprisings, exposing his cock Diogenes-style to a crowd (penis mightier than the sword?), and other sundry activities, he with maximum advance publicity burned himself alive as a postlude to the AD 165 Olympic Games – something like that would much enliven our modern ones, though not sure how you’d decide the winner.

Lucian devotes most space to Peregrinus’s duping of Christians – he is intriguingly said to have written some of their books — a sect mocked for worshipping “a sophist crucified in Palestine” (one pagan evidence for Jesus’s historicity . FT228.25) and as “morons who think they live forever”.

In his Philopseudes (Lover of Lies), Lucian pokes fun at tales of ghosts, poltergeists, and pest-death experiences. This is satire, but satire aimed at contemporary beliefs and claims, some of which might have appeared in Rome’s daily news gazette, the Acta Diurna,  known to have carried tabloid sensations; cf. my article in Chiron 9, 1979, pp.89 203, plus forthcoming FT column. One of his anecdotes herein is the direct ancestor of Faust’s Der Zauberlehring and thence in Disney’s Fantasia.

His True Story, albeit in Baron Munchausen vein, is an early, perhaps the earliest, science fiction novel — cf. my “Ancient SF?” [FT278-45-47) – along with philosophical dialogues which have his Cynic hero Menippus variously descending to Hades and ascending to Olympian heaven –  latter not the medal winners’ podium.

And, if by now I’ve put you to sleep, there’s in alarming awakener in this unique mention (Hippias, or the Bath,ch8) of a water-clock “that bellows like a bull”– I’ll stick to my retro Teasmade, while working out the Greek for “Wakey-Wakey”.

Classical Corner 141: Fortean Times 279 (September, 2011), p. 19.

#Thelxinoe ~ Your Morning Salutatio for September 20, 2019

Hodie est a.d. XII Kal. Octobres 2772 AUC ~  22 Boedromion in the third year of the 699th Olympiad

In the News

In Case You Missed It

Fresh Bloggery

Fresh Podcasts

Laura joins David to talk about Greek Myth Comix, which started when she made an pact with one of her Classical Civilisation students to get back into drawing. She discusses her favourite graphic novel authors and writers, the difficulties in adapting the ancient world for modern audiences (and why she wasn’t a fan of the BBC show Atlantis), and when Greek Myth Comix got onto the front page of Reddit. Laura also chats about her work on the Amarantus and his Neighbourhood project from Cambridge School Latin, which aims to teach kids about life among the lower-classes of Pompeii

‘Natural and man-made geography exerts its influence on warfare, determining the passage of whole armies and fleets, sometimes allowing a single soldier to hold up an entire host.’

The team discuss Ancient Warfare Magazine XIII.2 ‘Hunting for good ground: The role of geography in warfare’.

Octona milia passuum cotidie. Cur?

 

Book Reviews

Dramatic Receptions

Professional Matters

Alia

‘Sorting’ Out Your Day:

Today on the Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar:

If it should thunder today, it portends a long-standing dispute and for the majority, extreme suffering out of the conflict.

… adapted from the text and translation of:

Jean MacIntosh Turfa, The Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar, in Nancy Thomson de Grummond and Erika Simon (eds.), The Religion of the Etruscans. University of Texas Press, 2006. (Kindle edition)

#Thelxinoe ~ Your Morning Salutatio for September 19, 2019

Hodie est a.d. XIII Kal. Octobres 2772 AUC ~  21 Boedromion in the third year of the 699th Olympiad

In the News

In Case You Missed It

Greek/Latin News

Public Facing Classics

Fresh Bloggery

Fresh Podcasts

We return to our narrative of Rome’s history of its foundation with some surprising Sabines. It’s still 460 BCE, which is an indication of just how complicated Rome’s history is becoming when we read our sources. Both Livy and Dionysius of Halicarnassus are very focused on the ongoing conflict between the Roman elites and the emerging claims to power from the plebeians. We wouldn’t would to give too many spoilers away, but while the Romans are busy trying to figure out what their internal politics will look like, there might just be an enemy on the horizon!‎

Since the Ice Age, humans have been using their imaginations to create objects of great artistry and skill, many of them destined for spiritual or religious functions.  Exploring the stories these objects tell and the shared narratives they reflect helps us to understand the nature of belief and the complex relationship between faith and society. In this episode, former British Museum director, Neil MacGregor, discusses these ideas, which are the topic of his recent book Living with the Gods: On Beliefs and Peoples.

Book Reviews

Dramatic Receptions

Professional Matters

Alia

‘Sorting’ Out Your Day:

Today on the Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar:

If it should thunder today, it portends the downfall of a ruler or the overthrow of a king, but also portends discord among the people and prosperity.

… adapted from the text and translation of:

Jean MacIntosh Turfa, The Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar, in Nancy Thomson de Grummond and Erika Simon (eds.), The Religion of the Etruscans. University of Texas Press, 2006. (Kindle edition)