#Thelxinoe ~ Classics News for July 27, 2021

Hodie est a.d. VI Kal. Aug. 2774 AUC ~ 18 Hekatombaion in the first year of the 700th Olympiad

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With the Games underway in Tokyo, Tom and Dominic look back to the Ancient Olympics. They discuss the heroic but incredibly violent stories of the Greek superstars of 2500 years ago, and why the Games were bad news for women, animals and cheats. Plus, Tom reveals how his cricketing woes were compounded by an Ancient Greek poet.

The unexpected death of King Alexander III of Macedon (commonly known as Alexander the Great) ended the Classical period and ushered in the Hellenistic period. Dr Charlotte Dunn, University of Tasmania, joins the show to explain the succession after Alexander’s life.

In the mid-20th century French archaeologists came across a remarkable collection of ancient items from Eastern China, the Indian subcontinent and the Roman Mediterranean, all in one place. In this second episode about Begram, Tristan is once again joined by the University of Freiburg’s Lauren Morris, who takes us into the details of these decorative plaques, small figures and inlays, carved from ivory and bone and sometimes decorated with lacquer. Lauren and Tristan then explore what the hoard tells us about the global nature of this area in Central Asia during its golden age in the 1st – 4th centuries AD.

In the space of a few weeks there have been many sad developments in archaeology in the UK. Sheffield University announced the closure of its world-renowned archaeology department, shortly before Liverpool’s waterfront was stripped of its UNESCO World Heritage status, which preceded the news that Stonehenge is also at risk. In this episode, Dan is joining the fight to save archaeology. He chats with TV presenter, archaeological scientist and lecturer at Newcastle University, Chloe Duckworth and Executive Director of the Council for British Archaeology, Neil Redfern, about the importance of the discipline. They discuss why archaeology matters, why it’s a good subject to study, and, in a world facing issues like a global pandemic and climate change, why put funding into digging up the past?

More specifically, it is about PornHub’s recent project called ‘Classic Nudes’ which caused a bit of a stir amongst museums (who we’re pretty sure were mostly annoyed about their image rights). In an attempt to prove that whilst ‘porn may not be considered art … some art can definitely be considered porn’, PornHub have taken some of the biggest museums of the Western art historical tradition and, well, highlighted all the sexy bits. But seriously guys, this is PROFESH – with maps, bios, audio guides, the LOT.

We talked to Isobel Williams about her fascinating and illuminating new translation of selected poems of Catullus, illustrated with her drawings of the Japanese art of rope binding, shibari. Our discussion ranges over the connections between the world of shibari and the emotional struggles depicted in Catullus’s poetry, the way translation and learning Latin can feel like being tied up in, and untangling, knots, and much more. Content Note: fetish, sex, brief mention of sexual violence, discussion of enslavement and use of slavery as metaphor

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‘Sorting’ Out Your Day:

Today on the Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar:

If it thunders today, it portends the outbreak of a skin disease.

… 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)