#Thelxinoe ~ Classics News for June 17, 2022

Hodie est a.d. XV Kal. Jul. 2775 AUC ~ 18 Skirophorion in the first year of the 700th Olympia

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Scot emailed us this question for Murray to answer; ‘Certain tribal confederations, like the Franks & Saxons, typically bear “namesake” weapons (e.g. the Francisca and the Sax). Is the name of the weapon thought to be derived from the name of the confederation, or is the name of the confederation derived from the weapon?’

Coins are the most enduring symbols of the Greco-Bactrian and the Indo-Greek kingdoms, considered to be invaluable tools in reconstructing their chronologies in absence of a written history. Joining our series is numismatist Dr. Frank Lee Holt, author of books such as “Thundering Zeus: The Making of Hellenistic Bactria” and “Lost World of the Golden King: In Search of Ancient Afghanistan”, who discusses how coins can be used (or misused) to tell the story of Hellenistic Bactria, and their vital role in preserving the threatened cultural heritage of Central Asia.

Liv speaks with Professor Karen Carr about stories of Hero and Leander, and ancient swimming practices across the world. Stories that speak to how different cultures through history saw the act of swimming and what it meant. Follow Karen Carr on Twitter for more, and pick up a copy of her new book Shifting Currents: A World History of Swimming, available now!

After centuries of Cleopatra and Mark Antony’s relationship being told and fictionalised by Plutarch and Shakespeare alike, Tom Holland and Dominic Sandbrook uncover what history tells us about this power couple. They reveal how the rise of Octavian as a threat caused Mark Antony to turn to Cleopatra for support. It was a relationship that had less to do with romance and love, and more to do with monetary and territory gains.

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‘Sorting’ Out Your Day:

Today on the Etruscan Brontoscopic Calendar:

If it thunders today, it portends days of searing heat and destruction of crops by mice, moles, and locusts. Even so, there will be abundance, but also murders of 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)