#Thelxinoe ~ Classics News for June 3, 2022

Hodie est a.d. III Non. Iun. 2775 AUC ~ 4 Skirophorion in the first year of the 700th Olympia

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Palmyra is an ancient ruined city in modern Syria, long known for its place in the Roman empire and strongly influenced by Persian and Hellenistic cultures. In modern times it has been associated with the major destruction by the Islamic State, and there are currently hopes for its restoration. Guest: Dr Peter Edwell (Senior Lecturer, Department of History and Archaeology at Macquarie University).

The Delian league had now been established with the majority of its members coming from regions throughout the Aegean. In its inception they had all turned to a Greek city state on the mainland, that of Athens who headed the league. In 477 BC the league would now find itself in a position to begin campaigning for the first time, they would set out under the leadership of a relative new comer to the scene of Athenian politics, Cimon….

After a few parting remarks and summations to Book 1, Jeff and Dave wander through the dense undergrowth near the shores of Carthage and make their way to the palace of Dido and Book 2. Here we meet the big set piece, the longest account of the fall of Troy in Greco-Roman literature. How does Jupiter’s promise of endless empire for the wolf-pelted Romans get started? How does it feel for Dido to wear that souvenir T-shirt, “I’m with Cupid”? How do we feel about ethnic profiling? Are all Greeks really as evil as the actor left on the shore, or is he just a Sinon the times? What kind of a sound should a spear make when it hits a horse? And finally, should Laocoön get some comeuppance for being the only one who sees the truth? These and more questions will be answered, and you will be treated to a lovely clip from that war on bureaucracy, the ’80s British comedy series Yes, Minister. And don’t miss the extended discussion of scrimshaw and relish.

Patron of the podcast James poses this question for Murray, ‘The number of Spartan soldiers declined from its high of 10,000 to less than 2,000 around its defeat by Thebes due, in part, to increasing economic concentration and the resulting decline in the number of soldiers able to pay their mess contributions. Did Spartan society recognise this decline as a problem, and were there efforts to reverse this trend? If there were, why did they fail?’

Richard Cohen joins us to talk about the nuts and bolts of how history gets written, and the people who have shaped how we study the past.

Liv dives into ancient parody and satire before reading the Batrachomyomachia, the Battle of Frogs and Mice, translated by Hugh Evelyn White.

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‘Sorting’ Out Your Day:

Today on the Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar:

If it thunders today, it portends a hot and dry wind of such strength that not only grains but even soft fruits will dry and shrivel up.

… 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)