#Thelxinoe ~ Classics News for January 13, 2022

Hodie est Id. Ian. 2775 AUC ~ 11 Gamelion in the first year of the 700th Olympiad

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The fact that many of the marbles from the Parthenon reside in the British Museum (London) has been controversial since they first landed there in the early 19th century. In this complex tale Lord Elgin has often played the villain—he being the one who greedily had the sculptures removed from Athens to decorate his drafty Scottish mansion. But is the story that simple? In this episode Dave and Jeff tell the whole story front to back with an eye to several questions: does Elgin perhaps deserve a bit more sympathy than he usually gets? What are the arguments for keeping the artifacts in London, and for repatriation? Why should Lord Byron—noted defacer of Greek monuments—get a pass? My goodness, what on earth happened to Lord Elgin’s nose? And, will the guys ever stop attempting Scottish accents?

The year 446 BCE has it all – battles, civil strife, virtus, dynamic leadership… Rome is certainly on a better path after the mysterious and seemingly disastrous 447 BCE.

At its height, the Seleucid Empire stretched from Thrace (modern day Bulgaria) to the Indus River Valley. Emerging from the tumultuous ‘Successor Wars’ that followed Alexander the Great’s passing, for over a century it was a superpower of the eastern Mediterranean. This, however, ultimately led it into conflict with Rome at the beginning of the 2nd century BC. The result was a devastating defeat for the Seleucid King Antiochus III ‘the Great’ at the Battle of Magnesia, fought around this time of year in either December 190 BC or January 189 BC. Following the battle, the Seleucids were humbled by a damaging treaty, but what happened next? What followed for the Seleucids, having been humbled by the Romans? Did they descend from superpower to suppliant? Or did they experience a resurgence? In today’s podcast, Eduardo Garcia-Molina, a PHD Classics student at the University of Chicago, argues the latter. Focusing in on the reign of Antiochus IV, Eduardo highlights how the Seleucid Empire remained a powerful entity in the wake of Magnesia and their Roman defeat.

In ancient Rome, being made Emperor could be a death sentence. Experienced generals and statesmen lasted weeks or months sometimes. In some cases, children were raised to the role. What became of them? Part 1 of our series looks at two very different kinds of child tyrant: Elagabalus and Caracalla.

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‘Sorting’ Out Your Day:

Today on the Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar:

If it thunders today, it portends diseases.

… 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)