Electra Atlantis: Digital Approaches to Antiquity


Tom Elliott (tom.elliott@nyu.edu)

This feed aggregator is part of the Planet Atlantides constellation. Its current content is available in multiple webfeed formats, including Atom, RSS/RDF and RSS 1.0. The subscription list is also available in OPML and as a FOAF Roll. All content is assumed to be the intellectual property of the originators unless they indicate otherwise.

March 30, 2015

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

BIBLindex: Références bibliques dans la littérature patristique

[First posted in AWOL 9 December 2009. Updated 30 March 2015]

BIBLindex: Références bibliques dans la littérature patristique
A corpus of about 400,000 biblical references is available on this site.

Access to data is free. This website offers:
- Data from the published volumes of Biblia Patristica, Index des citations et allusions bibliques dans la littérature patristique, Editions du CNRS (ca. 270,000 biblical references, with updates on 5,000 references), prepared by the Centre for Patristics Analysis and Documentation (CADP) : 1. Beginnings to Clement of Alexandria and Tertullian, 1975 - 2. The third century (except Origen), 1977 - 3. Origen, 1980 - 4. Eusebius of Caesarea, Cyril of Jerusalem, Epiphanius of Salamis, 1987 - 5. Basil of Caesarea, Gregory Nazianzen, Gregory of Nyssa, Amphiloque of Iconium, 1991 - 6. Hilary of Poitiers, Ambrose of Milan, Ambrosiaster, 1995 - 7. Didymus of Alexandria, 2000 - Supplement, Philo of Alexandria, 1982. [They all are all out of print.]
- Unpublished data from the archives of Biblia Patristica (ca. 100,000 references) on Athanasius of Alexandria, John Chrysostom, Theodoret of Cyrus, Procopius of Gaza, Jerome: these data are unverified (they appear in red).
For further information on our project, please visit our scientific blog: http://biblindex.hypotheses.org/.
The project is supported by the French Research Agency (ANR, 2011-2015): a new version of this site is currently prepared. Thank you for your understanding.

Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

How to use RTI to visualize the daguerreotype’s surface

Reflectance Transformation Imaging (RTI) per lo studio della superficie dei dagherrotipi.

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Sidonius Apollinaris Online

Sidonius Apollinarus

This website focuses on Gaius Sollius Apollinaris Sidonius, a fifth- century Gallo-Roman aristocrat, high official, poet, letter writer, and bishop of Clermont (Auvergne) - a key figure in the transition of the later Roman Empire to the early Middle Ages and the dawn of Europe as we know it. It provides news on publications, conferences, and scholars in this field. It contains materials for the study of Sidonius, featuring, among other things, an up-to-date bibliography and files for download such as the complete Latin text of the letters according to Luetjohann's authoritative 1887 edition.

Pede certo: metrica latina digitale

Pede certo: metrica latina digitale
Pede certo è uno strumento per l’analisi automatica dei versi latini, messo a punto dall’Università di Udine nell’ambito del progetto FIRB Traditio patrum. La sua applicazione all’archivio digitale Musisque Deoque — che comprende i testi della poesia latina dalle origini al VII secolo d.C. — ha consentito la scansione dei circa 244.000 versi dattilici in esso contenuti.
In questo sito un motore di ricerca appositamente sviluppato si avvale dei risultati dell’analisi per interrogare il corpus su base metrica, secondo molteplici approcci.
Nella pagina Scansioni libere è disponibile inoltre un dimostrativo semplificato, ma immediatamente usabile, dello strumento con cui è stata eseguita la scansione.
Mostra una panoramica delle ricerche di versi Mostra una panoramica delle strutture prosodiche
Pede certo is program for the automatic analysing of Latin verses developed by the Università di Udine as part of the Traditio patrum FIRB project. Its application to the Musisque Deoque digital archive – containing Latin poetry texts from the archaic period to the 7th century AD – has enabled the scansion of approximately 244,000 dactylic verses.
On this site, a specifically developed search engine that draws upon the results of the scansion may be used to conduct metrical investigations of the corpus, through a variety of approaches.
The Free scansions page offers a simplified but immediately usable demo version of the scanning program
Show an overview of verse searches Show an overview of prosodic structures

Republic of Cyprus: Department of Antiquities

Republic of Cyprus: Department of Antiquities
On our website you can find information, both in Greek and English, concerning the history, the mission and the responsibilities of the Department of Antiquities. You can also be informed on the legislative framework that governs the antiquities of Cyprus, the publications of the Department, the educational and european programmes and the excavations that take place on the island as well as the looting of the island's cultural heritage in the occupied part of Cyprus. The site also includes downloadable applications on matters that concern the Department of Antiquities.

The largest part of the website contains information concerning public museums and all visitable ancient monuments and archaeological sites. Apart from the historical and archaeological facts, practical information regarding the opening hours, public holidays and ticket prices are included. The Department of Antiquities' website will be constantly enriched with new information and will include announcements concerning the activities of the Department of Antiquities and other matters related to the archaeology of Cyprus.

Index Page Chronological Table

Minister's Address News

Director's AddressLegislation

Historical BackgroundPublications

Mission/ AuthoritiesAnnual Report

MuseumsDepartment of Antiquities Library

MonumentsEducational Programmes

Unesco MonumentsForeign Archaeological Missions

Archaeological SitesForms

Controlled AreasLooting of Cultural Heritage


Events Calendar

Source: Journalism Code, Context & Community

Thank You, Electionbot

By Jacob Harris

Thank You, Electionbot

Typical Electionbot chatter in our Slack channel

Jacob Harris's thoughts on bots, meaning, and serendipity helped close #botweek 2014 on Source. This year, he kicks off #botweek 2015 with an introduction to his Slack-integrated, blood-pressure-lowering Electionbot. —Ed.

Reporting election results is a bit like flying a blimp through windmill country: hours of tedium punctuated by minutes of terror. Generally most of your night filled with the boring hours of waiting for polls to close or watching the remaining votes trickle in after the important races have been called. But in between those spans are usually several important events for key races:

  • The polls close in the state (get ready to show votes)
  • First votes are reported (good time to check your results)
  • The race is called for a winner (sometimes 2 winners or a runoff)

What makes things complicated is that each newsworthy race we might care about might reach these moments at different points during the night. Furthermore, each state will close its polls at different times, and some states will report votes immediately after polls close while others may take a half hour or more. On the night of the 2014 midterm election, there were 9 different poll closing times across all the states and 52 races the New York Times considered especially newsworthy. Those are a lot of balls in the air at once. Previously, the only recourse was to eyeball the loader’s console output as it scrolled past and to send messages to reporters whenever the races they cared about were called. This can mean some stressful interruptions when you are trying to track down a bug in your code. In 2014, it was time for Electionbot to shoulder part of the load.

At its core, what we called Electionbot consisted of two separate pieces of code. The first of these was a notifier that would be called by the loader after it completed every load and post messages to a Slack channel where the election team was gathered. This used Slack’s incoming webhooks API to send alerts when an important race was called or a state’s polls had closed. The code for something like this is pretty straightforward but its utility is immense:

class SlackNotifier
  def self.notify(load_id)
  def self.notify_calls(load_id)
    warnings = Warning.called.for_load(load_id)

    if warnings.any?
      uncontested,contested = warnings.partition {|w| w.race.uncontested? }
      // uncontested alerts elided
      if contested.any?
        important, unimportant = contested.partition {|w| w.nyt_race.important? }

        if important.any?
          payload = {
            "attachments" => [{
            "fallback" => "CALLS: #{important.map{|w| "#{w.nyt_race_id}: #{w.ap_candidate.name_with_party}"}.join("; ")}",
            "color" => "warning",
            "pretext" => "RACE CALLS",
            "fields" => important.map do |w|
                "title" => w.nyt_race_id,
                "value" => w.ap_candidate.name_with_party,
                "short" => true

The election loader already had a decently sophisticated mechanism for generating warnings about newsworthy changes. All that was necessary was to add these hooks to format and post warnings to Slack. In 2012, I built a system to mail me whenever delegate counts changed. Posting to the Slack worked so much better though, since we were all in the channel on election nights already, and any missed notifications would be sent out to me by email anyway.

The next step was to enable communication with the loader from our Slack channel. I built a minimalist backend written in Sinatra that replied to slash commands triggered in the election channel for some common administrative tasks. For instance, there was a command to report the upcoming poll closing times to the channel to remind us all when to time our bathroom breaks.

poll closing notifications

Poll closing notifications

Another command toggled certain races as important, so that the notifier would tell us when they had their first votes or were called. Again, the code was pretty straightforward:

def exec

  case params["text"]
  when /^poll[\s_]closings/
  when /^important\s?(.*)$/
  when /^load/
  when /^uncalled/
    render :text => help_text

def important_races(arg_str)
  arg_str = arg_str.strip
  payload = nil

  if arg_str.blank?
    races = NytRace.upcoming.important.all

    if races.any?
      payload = {"text" => "Current important races: #{races.map {|x| "`#{x.id}`"}.join(",")}"}
      payload = {"text" => "No current races marked as important"}

    post_to_slack(@channel, payload)
  elsif arg_str =~ /(on|off) (.+)$/
    verb = $1

    race_ids = $2.split(/,/)
    race_ids.each do |id|
      race = NytRace.find(id)

      if verb == "on"
        race.update_attribute(:important, true)
      elsif verb == "off"
        race.update_attribute(:important, false)

    payload = {"text" => "Setting *important* to *#{verb}* for #{race_ids.map {|x| "`#{x}`"}.join(",")}"}
    post_to_slack(@channel, payload)

  render :text => '', :status => 200 

With these two components, we theoretically could’ve replaced much more of the election loader’s admin interface with interactive commands, but I was too nervous to allow users to call races directly from Slack. All requests to and from Slack include a security token you can check to eliminate basic spoofing, but they still are going over the public internet between Slack’s servers and ours (even if within HTTPS), and I’d rather not explain man-in-the-middle attacks to an executive editor on an election night. So, we kept its capabilities simple on purpose.

Still, I can’t overstate how great it was to have Electionbot with us in the Slack. It wasn’t particularly advanced as bots might go, being just a simple interface into a much more complicated realm of code. Yet I began to think of it like another coworker, always on the lookout for problems we should know about. During a late-night primary from home, I’d feel comfortable leaving my laptop downstairs to check on the sleeping children, because I knew Electionbot would tell me if anything was going wrong. And sometimes I even ran some election night commands to make a state’s results visible from my phone just because I could.

The best moments were when Electionbot transcended a mere shell script and informed us all of an uncalled race we probably wouldn’t have noticed otherwise. Even though I knew better, I found myself reflexively thanking it in the chat for the save. We form bonds with even the simplest of tools, and Electionbot was there with me on every night there were votes being tabulated somewhere in America. I know it’s just a dumb framework of Ruby code, but still I have to say it.


Thank you, Electionbot. You're the best.

Event Roundup, Mar 30

By Erika Owens

Event Roundup, Mar 30

We're accepting proposals till April 10. Pitch a session today.


Know of any upcoming fellowship or conference proposal deadlines? Have an upcoming event? Let us know: source@mozillafoundation.org.

Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

Il tempo e la cura, percorso didattico sulla conservazione e la valorizzazione dei beni culturali

Sensibilizzare i più piccoli ai temi della conservazione e valorizzazione del patrimonio culturale. Con questo obiettivo è stato pensato il laboratorio “Il tempo e la cura”, rivolto alle ultime classi della scuola primaria dell’Istituto comprensivo Calimera-Martignano, organizzato dal progetto di ricerca In-Culture, in collaborazione con il Parco Turistico Palmieri di Martignano.

Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

The Soon and the Summer

I bought by tickets to Greece for next summer and I need to buy my tickets from Athens to Cyprus this week. After a year away from my work on Cyprus to focus on the Western Argolid Regional Project in Greece, I’m going to return to Polis-Chrysochous for a three-week study season starting May 5. Then heading to Greece for almost two months on May 25th or 26th. This all means that planning for the summer has to start now.

First, the next few weeks will prove to be busy, but exciting.

On April 8th-11th, I’ll host Andrew Reinhard and Richard Rothaus on campus for a public showing of the documentary, Atari: Game Over, and an academic round-table on the archaeology of gaming and the contemporary world.

On April 7th, I take a quick trip to Fargo for a dissertation defense. 

On April 18th, I’ll be in at the Mary Jaharis Center in Brookline, MA to participate in a roundtable on “Byzantium in the Public Sphere” and somehow simultaneously at a Man Camp Dialogue presentation in Ellendale.      

Over the same stretch of time, I need to put the finishing touches on two sabbatical projects. One is the final round of revisions on the North Dakota Man Camp Project paper for Historical Archaeology, and the other is a book proposal for the Tourist Guide to the Bakken Oil Patch, which is become a more and more compelling project every passing week. The book proposal is virtually done and I have a meaningful draft of the manuscript in hand. Now all I need to make is a few final touches and pull the trigger. I’m also doing the final revisions on an article for Internet Archaeology on archeological blogging.

At the same time, I’ve been trying to put together the kit of necessary summer gear that has to be ordered and sorted out before the start of May.

1. New Laptop. My three year old 15-inch Dell XPS has finally become unusable thanks to a combination of Windows 8 and some kind of nagging hardware issues. So I have to order a quad-core Dell Precision 15-inch today with 16-gb of ram. 3D image processing takes a tremendous amount of power.

2. New GPS unit. My trusty, 10 year old Garmin Gecko was stolen from my 12-year-old truck this past fall. We used Garmin Oregon 650s this past summer in Greece because we could upload aerial photographs to them and they had 8-megapixel cameras. In turns out that the cameras were not particularly useful and drained the battery. So this summer, I’ll purchase a Garmin 600 which is the same unit without a camera.

3. Camera. I love my Panasonic GX1, but the camera will be going on its third field season and has enjoyed such exotic opportunities as being used in a landfill in a dust storm, being lugged up every elevation in the Western Argolid without a lens cap, and several trips to the froze tundra of North Dakota. My hope is that it survives this summer, but I bought a fall back camera, a Canon ELPH135, which is discontinued and sells for less than $90 on Amazon. It’s nowhere near as good as the Panasonic, but it’s small, cheap, and good enough for a backup camera.

4. Microphone. With my career as a podcaster slowly gaining momentum, I need a small, decent USB microphone. Suggestions? For our podcasts, I’ve used a Blue Yeti, but this is a heavy microphone and I need to save some weight for, you know, three months of clothing.

5. Music. Living away from home for this long of a time is hard on me for a range of reasons (wife, dog, house, other responsibilities), but part of the thing that makes it hard is that I go from being alone most of the time to being surrounding by people most of the time. My escape is listening to music. To facilitate this, I have seriously upgraded my mobile music kit. First, I got a pair of new Audeze EL-8, closed back headphones and a little bird has hinted that I’ll get a new ALO Rx MK3 B+ amplifier which appears to be getting phased out of the ALO line-up and is now available at steeply discounted prices from their warehouse page. The amp is probably overkill for the EL-8s, but I suspect even in single-ended mode (balanced cables are not yet available for the EL-8s) it’ll provide a bit more oomph for the relatively efficient EL-8s as well as the option to move to a balanced set up in the future. 

6. Books. Usually I make a request for summer reading recommendations, but this summer, it looks like the American Journal of Archaeology has that all sorted out for me. I’m going to be working on a review article featuring several new books on the archaeology of the contemporary world and the growing interest in materiality among archaeologists. That being said, I’ll need to track down a few recreational books to read this summer, preferably with spaceships in them. 

EAGLE News: Europeana Network of Ancient Greek and Latin Epigraphy

Ancient History Seminar Series: Digital Classics, Hilary Term 2015

Classics at Oxford have recently included a number of screenings in their classical podcasts that are of great interest to epigraphists.

There’s amongst others Pietro Liuzzo speaking on ‘The Europeana Best Practice Network of Ancient Greek and Latin Epigraphy’, or Gabriel Bodard on digital prosopographies (SNAP:DRGN).




The full list and the podcasts themselves can be viewed here:

Exciting epigraphic videos

A couple of interesting videos resources have been recently released which focus on some of the most important and famous inscriptions.

The first is a film made by a team from the Middle East Technical University in Ankara in 2011 at Oinoanda in northern Lycia, only just released to the public, entitled ‘A Gigantic Jigsaw Puzzle: The Epicurean Inscription of Diogenes of Oinoanda’:



The second is another exciting epigraphic video, albeit a bit older, may be worth watching (again) too,  because it als with one of the longest of all known inscriptions, mostly attested in Asia Minor – Diocletian’s Prices Edict – even if on this occasion, the text is from Geraki in Greece:


Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

Prima applicazione della micro-SORS per lo studio di stratigrafie di opere d'arte

Per la prima volta è stata applicata con successo la nuova tecnica analitica non distruttiva micro-SORS allo studio di stratigrafie di opere d'arte. Un team di ricercatori dell'ICVBC-CNR di Milano e del Central Laser Facility, STFC - RAL, Oxfordshire (UK) ha infatti analizzato la composizione di opere d’arte al di sotto della superficie mediante questa tecnica basata su laser, da loro recentemente sviluppata.

Digital Heritage 2015, proroga Call for Papers

E' stata prorogata la scadenza per la presentazione di contributi (paper, worskhop, panel, tutorial) per la Conferenza Internazionale Digital Heritage 2015 in programma a Granada, in Spagna, dal 28 settembre al 2 ottobre 2015. La Conferenza è dedicata al patrimonio culturale digitale, alle nuove tecnologie per la conservazione e valorizzazione dei beni culturali.
Digital Heritage 2015, in collaborazione con le Conferenze e le mostre affiliate che si svolgono sotto una gestione e registrazione comune, invita a partecipare ed a contribuire al secondo forum internazionale per la diffusione e lo scambio delle conoscenze scientifiche d'avanguardia sulle aree teoriche, generiche e applicate del patrimonio digitale.

Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations

CSDH/SCHN 2015 Outstanding Achievement Award for Computing in the Arts and Humanities

The Canadian Society of Digital Humanities/Société canadienne des humanités numériques (CSDH/SCHN) has announced the 2015 Outstanding Achievement Award for Computing in the Arts and Humanities winner is Dr. Chad Gaffield, Professor of History and University Research Chair in Digital Scholarship at the University of Ottawa. See the full news release here.
Cross-posted from http://csdh-schn.org/category/news/

Program Available for the Joint CSDH/SCHN & ACH Digital Humanities Conference 2015

The Canadian Society of Digital Humanities/Société canadienne des humanités numériques (CSDH/SCHN) has announced that the joint program for the Joint CSDH/SCHN & ACH Digital Humanities Conference 2015 is now available: https://www.conftool.net/csdh-schn-ach-2015/index.php?page=browseSessions&presentations=show
The conference will be held as part of the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences in Ottawa, Canada, June 1-3, 2015. The conference will run four parallel sessions, with some seventy seven papers, seven panels, and twelve demos, including joint sessions with the Canadian Game Studies Association, Canadian Communication Association, Association of Canadian Colleges and University Teachers of English, with a keynote by Amy Earhart and an award plenary by Chad Gaffield.
The program is available online and in PDF format.

March 29, 2015

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Open Access Journal: NABU: Nouvelles Assyriologiques Brèves et Utilitaires

[First posted in AWOL 17 November 2012, updated 29 March 2015]

NABU: Nouvelles Assyriologiques Brèves et Utilitaires
ISSN: 0989-5671
Ce journal, intitulé Nouvelles Assyriologiques Brèves et Utilitaires, est publié quatre fois par an (mars, juin, septembre, décembre).
Comité de rédaction :
Dominique Charpin, Jean-Marie Durand, Francis Joannès, Nele Ziegler
Les numéros à partir de 1987 sont téléchargeables au format pdf.
Le signe * indique les numéros searchable (unicode seulement à partir de 2008/3). Les autres sont des fichiers-images. 
    NABU notes pertaining to the first Millennium are available online at Achemenet

    Also see the tables of contents of the Mémoires de NABU

    Pelagios: Enable Linked Ancient Geodata In Open Systems

    Linked Pasts

    The Pelagios project is pleased to announce a two-day colloquium on the subject of “Linked Pasts”, 20-21 July 2015, at KCL (The Great Hall, The Strand Campus). Bringing together leading exponents of Linked Data from across the Humanities and Cultural Heritage sector, we address some of the challenges to developing a digital ecosystem of online open materials, through two days of position papers, discussion and breakout group activity. Day 1 will tackle the themes of Time, Geo and People, and issues of Open Data, Classification Schemes and Infrastructure. Day 2 will be devoted to two parallel structured activities, one exploring Niches (space, time, people), and the other Nutrition Cycles (open data, classification, infrastructure). For details of the line up of talks and contributors, see below.

    Refreshments (tea/coffee, lunch) will be provided, along with a reception on Monday evening.

    The event is free of charge but places are limited. Please reserve your place through Eventbrite.

    Matthew Paris: Itinerary from London to Jerusalem. CC0

    Day 1
       Welcome – Pelagios: A Linked Pasts Ecosystem?
       Keynote – Sebastian Heath (NYU), Does a Linked Future Mean Past Understanding?    

    Session 1       
       Time – Ryan Shaw (UNC), An Ecosystem of Time Periods: PeriodO
       Geo – Ruth Mostern (UC Merced), An Ecosystem of Places: Gazetteers
       People – Gabriel Bodard (KCL), An Ecosystem of People: SNAP
    Session 2       
       Open Data – Mia Ridge (OU), Trends and Practice within Cultural Heritage
       Classification schemes – Antoine Isaac (Amsterdam), Europeana

    Day 2 
    Session 3: Towards an Infrastructure
       Rainer Simon (AIT): The Recogito Annotation Platform
       Humphrey Southall (Portsmouth): PastPlace gazetteer
       Guenther Goerz (Erlangen): WissKI
       Holly Wright/Doug Tudhope: Ariadne

    Session 4
       Structured Activity 1: Niches (Space, Time, People)
       Structured Activity 2: Nutrition Cycles (Open Data, Classification, Infrastructure)   
    Wrap up: feedback, next steps + community actions

    **Linked data goodness brought to you by elton, leif, rainer + pau**
    ***The colloquium is made possible by the generosity of our funders, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the AHRC***

    Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

    Open Access Historical Newspapers and Other Periodicals in Middle East & Islamic Studies

    Access to Mideast and Islamic Resources (AMIR) [ISSN 2160-3049], a sister project of AWOL, is intended as a tool to assemble and distribute information on open access material relating to the Middle East and Islamic Studies. It includes a developing:

    Alphabetical List of Open Access Historical Newspapers and Other Periodicals in Middle East & Islamic Studies

    currently listing 141 titles. Those interested in this domain can subscribe to AMIR directly.

    Open Access Journals in Middle Eastern and and Islamic Studies

    Access to Mideast and Islamic Resources (AMIR) [ISSN 2160-3049], a sister project of AWOL, is intended as a tool to assemble and distribute information on open access material relating to the Middle East and Islamic Studies. It includes a developing:
    Alphabetical List of Open Access Journals in Middle Eastern Studies

    currently listing 531 titles.  There is some (but not much) overlap between that lists and the List of Open Access Journals in Ancient Studies. Those interested in this domain can subscribe to AMIR directly.

    Open Access Ancient Numismatics Journals

    [First posted in AWOL 8 November 2011. Updated 29 March 2015]

    These are the open access eJournals focused on ancient numismatics of which I am aware.  Are there others?  Please let me know.

      Robert Consoli (Squinches)

      Big Man, Big House

       In Carol G. Thomas and Craig Conant’s Citadel to City-State we read the following:

      “Though a basileus has a role that transcends immediate family concerns, his basis of strength is his own household or oikos. At least in the epic world, these households were the largest kinship groups. When Odysseus seeks to reassert his power in Ithaca, for instance, he has the aid of his son and two household slaves. By preserving and enriching his own oikos, a man draws other families – through their own leaders – to his following. He keeps the allegiance of other heads of families as long as he is successful in battle and counsel, demonstrating his skills by means of material acquisitions. When he fails, leadership passes to the person giving the best advice or best proving himself in combat.

           The physical picture of Nichoria accords well with such a situation. The community is virtually an extended family, and the village leader, the head of the most important family. The community of Dark Age Nichoria, numbering some two hundred individuals during the tenth and ninth centuries, appears to be founded on a more stable foundation than its immediate predecessor. Too large to have supported itself by hunting and herding alone, the iron age settlement shows the first signs of renewed social differentiation and complexity. The large building occupied during this period and named by the excavators Unit IV-1 seems not to have been used solely as a center for cult activities or communal stores; its primary purpose may have been the residence of an exceptional person, known to modern anthropologists as the ‘Big Man’ of the community, along with his immediate family.”[1]

      Nichoria (37.002601 N, 21.916655 E) in Messenia in the Peloponnese was a thriving village under the control of Ano Englianos (Pylos) up through LHIIIC. It seems to have been used by the Mycenaean administration to produce linen if we are to judge by the amount of flax that they received from Pylos.[2] At the beginning of the twelfth century BC the site was destroyed and the population was enslaved, put to the sword or fled. The site lay deserted until about 1075 BC when it was resettled by a small group of, perhaps, 100 people. We can say nothing about the origins of the new population except that they are almost certain to have been Greek speakers. They rebuilt a few homes on the foundations of the Mycenaean houses and, in addition to that, they built apsidal buildings which are large structures, open-ended on one side and closed in a rounded apse on the other.  The structure known as IV-1 was built at least as early as the tenth century and, by the eighth century, it was joined by another which actually abutted it.  Were these apsidal structures domestic, communal, or what?  What was their purpose?  Were they the residences of the ‘big man’ of Thomas and Conant’s imaginations?

      It must be clearly understood that there’s nothing unusual or significant about Nichoria; it was just like hundreds of similar farming communities on the Greek mainland at that time. The reason that so much archaeological ink has been spilled on this community is that it is one of a very small number of sites that has a (nearly) continuous Iron Age stratigraphy and this allows us a glimpse, however incomplete, of the life of a community over several hundred years of that era. The population profile was almost certainly a shallow-sided pyramid which is characteristic in modern terms of a poverty-stricken and under-developed country. At any one time at least half of the population was under twenty years of age and there would have been very few or no inhabitants over the age of 60.   There is no meaningful way to apply the label ‘Mycenaean’ to this tiny village. And yet Thomas and Conant insist on dragging this fly-specked little hamlet into the world of the Homeric epic based on the existence of that apsidal house which they see, by an ego-based analysis[3], as the dwelling place of some completely imaginary ‘big-man’.

      In this confabulation, Thomas and Conant are begging the following questions.

      Begged question 1. Is Nichoria Mycenaean?

      Thomas and Conant clearly assume that this town is appropriately described in terms borrowed from the world of epic and that these people are ‘Mycenaean’. They seem to have some idea that Nichoria can be fruitfully compared to the (remember, fictional) estates of Odysseus and that similar considerations apply.


      ‘Mycenaean’ is neither race nor blood-type nor DNA profile. The term ‘Mycenaean’ can only be properly applied to a set of MH and LH behaviors – having little to do with farming praxis specifically – which resulted from the collision of the incoming Greek-speaking peoples of the MH with the Minoans who had started to colonize mainland Greece from the south and east. It is precisely these behaviors which are lost almost completely at the beginning of the 12th century BC in the Bronze Age Collapse as Thomas and Conant have been at pains to point out. In another place I have argued for the survival of Mycenaean civilization and behaviors at Athens at least through the end of the 11th century. But there is no meaningful sense in which a group of 100 or so semi-isolated people and cattle in the sticks of southern Messenia at the beginning of the 11th century BC can be Mycenaeans. The only thing we can plausibly say about their origins is that they were almost certainly Greek speakers.[4][5]

      Begged question 2: Did the Nichorians have structured or formal leadership?

      It’s just as plausible that the oldest person in town made the decisions. Perhaps we should re-purpose the Russian word ‘starets’ for Nichoria.

      Begged Question 3: Did the Nichorians have only one leader?

      The usual pattern for Indo-European leadership is twinned – one leader is a war leader and the other fulfills a sacral office.[6] This wide-spread practice survived in the Spartan twin-kingship (admittedly a different type of geminated leadership from the one I’ve just described).

      Begged Question 4: Was the society of Nichoria large enough to support the 
      factionalization of a ‘big-man’ society?

      The ‘big-man’ of Melanesia only exists in order to compete with other big men. ‘Big-man-ness’ is a zero-sum game. The prestige which big-man A derives from competitive gift-giving or feast-giving is taken from big-man B whose prestige is thereby reduced.  I think that there is very little possibility that Nichoria ever had the resources to support that sort of ‘big-man’ competitive gift-giving. Based on that silly apsidal house Thomas and Conant are asking us to believe that the big-man is a ‘chief’, sui generis in that village, someone like Odysseus. And he isn’t. It is because the Melanesian big-man is not a chief and does not act like one, that the ‘big-man’ terminology arose in the first place.[7]

      In addition there are vital factors which they simply ignore. The idea of kinship, for example. In my next post we will see that the archaeology suggests that this small community was divided into two kinship groups[8] one senior, one junior.
      If the apsidal house at Nichoria is not the dwelling place of some ‘big man’ then what is it?  I’ll deal with that also in my next post.


      [1] Thomas and Conant [1999], 51-2.

      [2] Burke [2010], 437.

      [3] By 'ego-based analysis' I mean an analysis that focuses on the single individual and discards what we can reasonably surmise about the society in which that person lived.  See my opening remarks from the last post here starting with 'When we characterize person Y...'.   Thomas and Conant are not the only ones. Hall [2007], 126. “…the monumental building in the Toumba cemetery could have served as a feasting-hall and as the residence of the community’s ‘big-man’.” The Toumba being referred to is at Lefkandi on Euboea.

      [4] Thomas and Conant [1999], 26. The early 11th century resettlement of Nichoria after several generations of abandonment is not inconsistent with an influx of Dorian Greeks. Cartledge [2002] 75 et passim argues for a Dorian influx.   “…the political vacuum ensuing after the Mycenaean debâcle would certainly have provided a perfect opportunity for such an infiltration of pastoralists into the Peloponnese.”,  ibid. 82.  Also “The extent to which Messenia had been ‘Dorianized’ before the Spartan takeover is problematic, but the fact that the Messenians laid so much stress on their Dorian ancestry and retained Dorian institutions even after their liberation from Sparta in 370 … may indicate that it was not negligible.”, 102.

      [5] In fact, given the virtual certainty of Minoan/Mycenaean dynastic inter-marriage and the general propensity of human beings to mate on sight I may have to back off on my DNA remarks.

      [6] Mallory [1989] 139, ‘War of the Functions’ et passim.  On the Spartan diarchy and the wide-spread existence in the Greek world of twinned kingships see Sahlins (2011).

      [7] Lindstrom [1981] 900 ff. and Seeland [2007], 6-7 both trace the dissatisfaction with previous ‘chief’ terminology among those writing about and living in Melanesia.

      [8] Otherwise how would anyone know whom to marry?


      Burke [2010]: Brendan Burke, “Textiles”, chapter 32 in The Oxford Handbook of the Bronze Age Aegean, Oxford University Press, 2010.

      Cartledge [2002]: Paul Cartledge, Sparta and Laconia; a Regional History. 1300-362 BC., 2nd edition. Routledge, Oxford, 1975, 2002.

      Hall [2007]: Jonathan M. Hall, A History of the Archaic Greek World ca. 1200-479 BCE. Blackwell Publishing, 2007.

      Lindstrom [1981]: Lamont Lindstrom, “’Big Man: A Short Terminological History”,American Anthropologist, NS 83:4 (Dec., 1981), 900-905, Wiley. On-line here:http://www.jstor.org/stable/676254

      Mallory [1989]:  J.P. Mallory, In Search of the Indo-Europeans; Language, Archaeology and Myth. Thames and Hudson, 1989.

      Sahlins [2011]: Marshall Sahlins with the assistance of Philip Swift, “Twin-born with greatness; the dual kingship of Sparta”, HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory, I:1 63-101. 2011. On-line here: http://www.haujournal.org/index.php/hau/article/view/32/28

      Seeland [2007]: Dan Seeland. “Stressing Servant Leadership in a Land of Big Men and Great Men”. Melanesian Journal of Theology 23-1 (2007) 6.

      Thomas and Conant [1999]: Carol G. Thomas and Craig Conant, Citadel to City-State: The Transformation of Greece, 1200-700 B.C.E., Indiana University Press, 1999.

      Kristina Killgrove (Powered by Osteons)

      Twerking, limericks, and 3D printing: PbO at the 2015 AAPAs

      This Saturday, from 9:15-10am, I'll be presenting (with my grad student, Andrea Acosta) a poster about teaching Human Osteology.  It's in a session called "Triumphs and Tribulations in Teaching," and it's sure to be a fun session and discussion (that part starts at 10:15).  I'm looking forward to visiting St. Louis for the first time, seeing lots of old friends, and making new ones.

      Here's an image of the poster we're presenting (click to embiggen). If you're desperate for a PDF, here's a link to the full poster via google drive.  Hope to see you all there!

      P.S. This likely means that I will have to put off blogging about the return of Bones until I get back.  Who decided to schedule the return during the AAPAs?  Sheez.

      March 28, 2015

      Juan Garcés (Digitised Manuscripts Blog)

      The Anglo-Saxon Origins of Medieval Justice

      Our major Magna Carta exhibition is now open in London, but for those of you who can't come to the British Library in person, over the coming months we're going to showcase some of the exhibits on this blog. You may imagine that our story starts in the years immediately...

      Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

      ISSL: The Index to the Sumerian Secondary Literature

      ISSL: The Index to the Sumerian Secondary Literature
      Over 70,000 references to the Sumerian secondary literature which also indexes all of the transliterations of word writings in ePSD.

      Open Access Monograph Series: Materialien zum Sumerischen Lexikon Online (early volumes)

      [First posted in AWOL 8 September 2011, updated 28 March 2015]

      Eight early volumes of Materialien zum Sumerischen Lexikon courtesy of the Oriental Institute Research Archives
      I. Die Serie ana ittišu. Landsberger, Benno. 1937. 
      II. Die Serie Ur-e-a = nâqu. Landsberger, Benno. 1951
      III. Das Syllabar A - Das Vokabular Sª - Das Vokabular Sb - Berichtigungen und Nachträge zu MSL II - Indices zu MSL II. Landsberger, Benno - Hallock, Richard T. - Sachs, A. - Schuster, h.s. 1955.
      IV. Introduction; Part 1: Emesal-vocabulary; Part 2: Old Babylonian Grammatical Texts; Part 3: Neobabylonian Grammatical Texts; Nachträge zu MSL III. Landsberger, Benno - Hallock, Richard T. - Jacobsen, Thorkild - Falkenstein, Adam. 1956
      V. The Series HAR-ra = hubullu. Tablets I-IV. Landsberger, B. 1957.
      VI. The Series HAR-ra = hubullu. Tablets V-VII. Landsberger, B. 1958.
      VIII/1 The Fauna of Ancient Mesopotamia. First Part: Tablet XIII. Landsberger, B. - Draffkorn Kilmer, Anne - Gordon, Edmund I. 1960.
      VIII/2. The Fauna of Ancient Mesopotamia. Second Part: HAR-ra = hubullu. Tablets XIV and XVIII. Landsberger Benno - Draffkorn Kilmer Anne. 1962.

      Juan Garcés (Digitised Manuscripts Blog)

      The Greek Manuscripts of Robert Curzon, Part II

      (For Part I, see this post). Today we continue our journey through the Greek manuscripts acquired by the 19th-century bibliophile and traveller Robert Curzon. Add MS 39604. Gospel Lectionary (Gregory-Aland l 344), with notes of lessons and names of months in Arabic. 12th century, ff 1-24 being added in the...

      March 27, 2015

      Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

      The Smithsonian Institution Excavation at Tell Jemmeh, Israel, 1970–1990

      The Smithsonian Institution Excavation at Tell Jemmeh, Israel, 1970–1990
      David Ben-Shlomo, Gus W. Van Beek (Volume editor), 1087 p., 22,5cm X 28,5cm, Smithsonian Contributions to Anthropology ISSN: 0081-0223 (print); 1943-6661 (The Smithsonian Institution, Washington 2014)
      This monograph describes the results of the archaeological excavation at the site of Tell Jemmeh, Israel, undertaken by the Smithsonian Institution and directed by Gus W. Van Beek during the years 1970–1990. All the artifacts from the excavations were shipped from Israel to Washington, D.C., and have been restored, studied, and analyzed in the National Museum of Natural History for the past four decades. The site is a strategic and large mound located near Gaza and the Mediterranean coast. It was inhabited continuously for at least 1,400 years during the Middle and Late Bronze Age, the Iron Age, and the Persian period. The highlights of this excavation are the findings of a large and affluent courtyard house from the Late Bronze Age, a sophisticated well-preserved pottery kiln from the early Iron Age, a complex of Assyrian-related administrative buildings during the late Iron Age, and a complete granary of the Persian period. This is a detailed and final report on all of the excavation results, including the architectural remains, stratigraphy, pottery, and other finds. In addition, several more detailed and focused studies of certain aspects of the site’s material include (among others) chapters on imported, decorated, Philistine, Assyrian-style and Greek pottery and chapters on figurines, sealings, jewelry, amulets, scarabs, cylinder seals, flint, coins, ostraca, and fauna. The volume is richly illustrated with nearly 1,000 figures showing field photographs, plans, sections, and drawings and photographs of artifacts. The significance of the results is summarized and discussed in the final chapter.
      Table of contents

      List of Figures --ix
      List of Tables --xxvii
      Preface and Acknowledgments --xxiv
      Introduction and Background.
      1. Introduction / David Ben-Shlomo and Gus W.Van Beek --1
      2. Environmental background of Tell Jemmeh / Gus W. Van Beek --16
      The Architecture, Stratigraphy and Finds from the Different Excavation
      3. Field III: The Southeastern Step Trench / David Ben-Shlomo -- 21
      4. Field II: The Northwestern Stepped Trench / David Ben-Shlomo --162
      5. The South Trench (ST1) / David Ben-Shlomo --198
      6. Field I: The Late Bronze Age /David Ben-Shlomo --209
      7. Field I Furnace (the Kiln), Square KB, and FUR 2-FUR 3 / David Ben-Shlomo --337
      8. Results from Field IV: The Iron II and Later Periods / David Ben-Shlomo --403
      9. Bread Ovens and Related Installations /Alexander Zukerman --642

      Pottery Studies
      10. Decorated Canaanite pottery / Gwanghyun Choi -- 651
      11. Imported Cypriot and Mycenaean wares and derivative wares / Celia J. Bergoffen –657
       12. Decorated Philistine pottery / David Ben-Shlomo --721
      13. Assyrian-Style Pottery (Palace Ware) / David Ben-Shlomo --732
      14. "East-Greek" and Greek imported pottery of the first millennium BCE / S. Rebecca Martin --749
      15. Petrographic Analysis of Pottery: Chalcolithic to Persian period /David Ben-Shlomo --776
      16. Computerized Documentation and Analysis of Pottery Vessels / Avshalom Karasik --795

      Small Finds Studies.
      17. Ceramic Figurines and Figurative Terra-cottas /David Ben-Shlomo, Ron Gardiner, and Gus Van Beek--804
      18. Worked Sherds /David Ben-Shlomo and Ron Gardiner --828
      19. Ceramic Objects: Marked Pottery,Mud Objects, and Various Ceramic Artifacts / David Ben-Shlomo --838
      20. Clay Sealings and Seal Impressions / David Ben-Shlomo and Othmar Keel --857
      21. Non-jewelry Metal Objects / David Ben-Shlomo and Ron Gardiner --876
      22. Metallic and Nonmetallic Jewelry Objects / Amir Golani --889
      23. Stone Artifacts Assemblage from Tel Jemmeh / Yorke M. Rowan –917
      24. Egyptian Amulets from Tell Jemmeh / Christian Herrmann -- 970
      25. Various Finds: Faience, Glass, Bone, Ivory, and Pumice / David Ben-Shlomo --977
      26. Chipped Stone Assemblage from Tell Jemmeh / Steven A. Rosen and Jalob Vardi --987
      27. Scarabs and Stamp Seals / Othmar Keel --1004
       28. Cylinder Seals: A Clay Cylinder with Cuneiform Signs / Wayne Horowitz and Tallay Ornan --1017
      29. Cylinder Seals: A Mitannian Cylinder Seal with a Worshipper and Divine Images / Tallay Ornan -- 1020
      30. Coins: Coins from the 1970-1990 Excavation Seasons at Tell Jemmeh / Donald T. Ariel --1023
      31. Coins: The Crusader Purse from Tell Jemmeh / Robert Kool --1026
      32. Ostraca from Tell Jemmeh / Haggai Misgav --1031

      Subsistence Studies
      33. Temporal Trends in Animal Exploitation: Faunal Analysis from Tell Jemmeh / Edward F. Maher --1038
      34. Synthesis and Conclusions. The Significance of Tell Jemmeh / David Ben-Shlomo --1054

      References --1067

      AMIR: Access to Mideast and Islamic Resources

      Partially Open Access Journal: Journal of Levantine Studies

      Journal of Levantine Studies
      Journal of Levantine Studies (JLS) is an interdisciplinary academic journal dedicated to the critical study of the geographical, social, and cultural settings which, in various periods of history, have been known as the "Levant." The journal is published biannually in English in print and online by the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute. 

      JLS aims to reclaim the Levant as a historical and political concept and as a category of identity and classification. The notion of the Levant has undergone a dynamic process of historical evolution in usage, meaning, and understanding. While the term "Levantine" originally referred to the European residents of the eastern Mediterranean region, it later came to refer to regional "native" and "minority" groups. As it developed alongside colonial practices and Eurocentric attitudes, the notion gradually acquired derogatory connotations in its everyday and academic usage. Intellectuals and social thinkers from the region renounced the term while simultaneously embracing and rejecting Western prejudices and attempting to avoid identification with larger regional units, which directly contradicted twentieth-century attempts to build nation-states. Meanwhile, in academia, the term has been largely relegated and confined to the fields of archaeology and literature. 

      Current trends in scholarship investigating various social and political "peripheries" have favored the development of internal discourses that originate within so-called margins and define themselves in their own cultural terms. (In this reorientation, terms with pejorative connotations, much like the Levant, have often been reclaimed). At the same time, scholars of postcolonial and subaltern theory have also suggested overturning the dominant discourse and even provincializing Europe itself. Similarly, rethinking regions such as the Levant as central to academic inquiry and re-conceptualizing Europe and other historically dominant regions as provinces may prove worthwhile. This reformulation may prove relevant to the Levant, whose geographical and conceptual maps, boundaries, and groupings have long been drawn with a Eurocentric pencil. Framing the Levant as a category of analysis creates a unique platform with novel possibilities for academic discussion and can trigger productive debate and theoretical and empirical scholarship on the Levant and Levantines in various geographical and historical contexts. 

      Re-conceptualization of the Levant as a useful category of analysis and classification could problematize and possibly reshape conceptual maps of the region by taking various subaltern perspectives into consideration, and posit the Levant as an active agent rather than as a passive object.
      The Editorial Board welcomes scholarly debate on the symbolic and theoretical significance of the Levant as well as on the political, social, and cultural manifestations of reality for the people of the region. The journal looks to publish articles that engage contemporary academic discussions on relevant socio-political topics including (but not limited to) processes of religion and secularization, the construction of memory, literary and linguistic streams, the migration of knowledge and people, consumerism and commercial networks, globalization, and the study of nationality and trans-nationalism. 

      JLS publishes articles focused on the modern era, which begins, symbolically, with the conquest of Constantinople in 1453. This date symbolizes the realization of Western fears of a clash with the Muslim and Eastern (Oriental) world on the one hand, and on the other the diverse and symbiotic social processes between religions and people—including the migration of ideas, art, people and goods—which continue to define the development and character of the Levant. As such, we adopted a chronological focal point that pays tribute to the history of the region and avoids the traditionally Western notion of 1492 as the watershed moment for global diffusion.
      Volume 1
      Summer 2011
      Winter 2011  
      Volume 2
      Summer 2012
      Winter 2012

      Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

      Open Access Journal: Theologisches Literaturblatt

      Theologisches Literaturblatt
      Luthardt, Christoph Ernst [Begr.]
      Leipzig, 1880-1943
      ISSN: 0323-6285
      5: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1884
      6: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1885
      7: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1886
      8: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1887
      9: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1888
      10: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1889
      11: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1890
      13: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1892
      14: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1893
      15: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1894
      16: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1895
      17: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1896
      18: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1897
      19: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1898
      20: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1899
      21: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1900
      22: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1901
      23: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1902
      24: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1903
      25: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1904
      26: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1905
      27: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1906
      28: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1907
      29: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1908
      30: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1909
      31: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1910
      32: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1911
      33: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1912
      34: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1913
      35: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1914
      36: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1915
      37: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1916
      38: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1917
      39: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1918
      40: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1919
      41: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1920
      42: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1921
      43: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1922
      44: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1923
      45: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1924
      46: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1925
      47: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1926
      48: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1927
      49: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1928
      50: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1929
      51: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1930
      52: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1931
      53: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1932
      54: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1933
      55: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1934
      56: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1935
      57: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1936
      58: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1937
      59: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1938
      60: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1939
      61: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1940
      62: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1941
      63: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1942
      64: Theologisches Literaturblatt.1943

      DigPal Blog

      Registration Opens for "Digital Approaches to Hebrew Manuscripts"

      We are delighted to announce the programme for On the Same Page: Digital Approaches to Hebrew Manuscripts. This two-day conference will explore the potential for the computer-assisted study of Hebrew manuscripts; discuss the intersection of Jewish Studies and Digital Humanities; and share methodologies. Amongst the topics covered will be Hebrew palaeography and codicology, the encoding and transcription of Hebrew texts, the practical and theoretical consequences of the use of digital surrogates and the visualisation of manuscript evidence and data. For the full programme and our Call for Posters, please see below.

      Registration for the conference is free. As places are limited, we recommend registering at an early point to avoid disappointment. To register, please click on this link: https://on-the-same-page.eventbrite.com

      Refreshments will be provided, but attendees should make their own arrangements for lunch. 

      Very much looking forward to seeing you in May,

      Stewart Brookes, Debora Matos, Andrea Schatz and Peter Stokes

      Organised by the Departments of Digital Humanities and Theology & Religious Studies (Jewish Studies)
      Co-sponsor: Centre for Late Antique & Medieval Studies (CLAMS), King's College London

      Call for Posters
      Are you involved in an interesting project in the wider field of Jewish Studies? Would you like to have a presence at the conference even though you're not giving a paper? If so, then you might like to consider submitting a poster which summarises the objectives, significance and outcomes of your research project. We'll display posters throughout the conference and if you attend with your poster, then you can talk about your work with attendees during the lunch breaks. Display space is limited, so please send a brief summary (max. 100 words) of your research/project to sephardipal@lists.cch.kcl.ac.uk. The deadline for the receipt of submissions is Thursday 16th April 2015. Notice of acceptance will be sent as soon as possible after that date. 

      Conference Programme 

      Monday 18th May 2015

      8.45 – Coffee and registration

      9.15 – Welcome

      • Stewart Brookes and Débora Matos (King’s College London)

      9.30 – Keynote lecture

      • Chair: Andrea Schatz (King’s College London)
      • Colette Sirat (École Pratique des Hautes Études): The Study of Medieval Manuscripts in a Technological World

      10.30 – Coffee/Tea

      11.00 – Session 1: Digital Libraries: From Manuscripts to Images

      • Chair: Renate.Smithuis (University of Manchester)
      • Ilana Tahan (British Library): The Hebrew Manuscripts Digitisation Project at the British Library: An Assessment
      • César Merchán-Hamann (Bodleian Library): The Polonsky Digitisation Project: Hebrew Materials
      • Emile Schrijver (Bibliotheca Rosenthaliana/University of Amsterdam): The Real Challenges of Mass Digitization for Hebrew Manuscript Research

      12.30 – Lunch break

      13.30 – Session 2: (Roundtable): Digital Images: Scale and Scope

      • Chair: Jonathan Stökl (King’s College London)
      • Rahel Fronda (University of Oxford): From Micrography to Macrography: Digital Approaches to Hebrew Script
      • Ilana Wartenberg (UCL): Digital Images in the Research of Medieval Hebrew Scientific Treatises
      • Estara Arrant (University of Oxford): Foundations, Errors, and Innovations: Jacob Mann’s Genizah Research and the Use of Digitised Images in Hebrew Manuscript Analysis
      • Dalia-Ruth Halperin (Talpiot College of Education): Choreography of the Micrography

      15.00 – Coffee/Tea

      15.30 – Session 3: Digital Space: Joins and Links

      • Chair: Paul Joyce (King’s College London)
      • Sacha Stern (UCL): The Calendar Dispute of 921/2: Assembling a Corpus of Manuscripts from the Friedberg Genizah Project
      • Israel Sandman (UCL): Manuscript Images: Revealing the History of Transmission and Use of Literary Works
      • Judith Kogel (CNRS, Paris): How to Use Internet and Digital Resources to Identify Hebrew Fragments

      17.00 – Keynote lecture

      • Chair: Stewart Brookes (King’s College London)
      • Judith Olszowy-Schlanger (École Pratique des Hautes Études): The Books Within Books Database and Its Contribution to Hebrew Palaeography

      Tuesday 19th May 2015

      9.15 – Keynote lecture

      • Chair: Peter Stokes (King’s College London)
      • Malachi Beit-Arié (Hebrew University of Jerusalem): The SfarData Codicological Database: A Tool for Dating and Localizing Medieval Codices, Historical Research and the Study of Book Production – Methodology and Practice

      10.15 – Session 4: Digital Palaeography: Tools and Methods

      • Chair: Julia Crick (King’s College London)
      • Débora Matos (King’s College London): Building Digital Tools for Hebrew Palaeography: The SephardiPal Database
      • Stewart Brookes (King’s College London): A Test-Case for Extending SephardiPal: The Montefiore Mainz Mahzor

      11.15 – Coffee/Tea

      11.45 – Session 5: Digital Corpora: Analysis and Editing

      • Chair: Eyal Poleg (Queen Mary University of London)
      • Ben Outhwaite (Cambridge University Library): Beyond the Aleppo Codex: Why the Hebrew Bible Deserves a Better Internet
      • Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra (École Pratique des Hautes Études): A Digital Edition of the Mishna: From Images to Facsimile, Text and Grammatical Analysis
      • Nachum Dershowitz (Tel Aviv University): Computational Hebrew Manuscriptology

      13.15 – Lunch break

      14.30 – Keynote lecture

      • Chair: Débora Matos (King’s College London)
      • Edna Engel (National Library of Israel): Hebrew Palaeography in the Digital Age

      15.30 – Session 6: Data and Metadata

      • Chair: tbc
      • Sinai Rusinek (Van Leer Institute): Digitally Reading from Right to Left
      • Yoed Kadary (Ben Gurion University): The Challenges of Metadata Mining in Digital Humanities Projects

      16.30 – Concluding roundtable

      17.00 – Refreshments

      The conference convenors would like to thank the Departments of Digital Humanities and Theology & Religious Studies as well as the Faculty of Arts & Humanities and the Centre for Late Antique and Medieval Studies at King’s College London for their generous support. With thanks to the Free Library of Philadelphia Rare Book Department for permission to use the image from Lewis O 140 (The Masoretic Bible of Portugal). Photograph courtesy of Débora Matos.

      Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

      Internet History Sourcebooks Project

      Paul Halsall, Editor
      The Internet History Sourcebooks Project is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted historical texts presented cleanly (without advertising or excessive layout) for educational use.

      Update Information 2006:
      In 2006 the Internet History Sourcebooks Project is undergoing a major overhaul to remove bad links and add more documents.

      1. This project is both very large and fairly old in Internet terms. At the time it was instigated (1996), it was not clear that web sites [and the documents made available there] would often turn out to be transient. As a result there is a process called "link rot" - which means that a "broken link" is a result of someone having taken down a web page. In some cases some websites have simply reorganized sub-directories without creating forwarding links. Since 2000, very few links to external sites have been made. An effort is under way to remove bad links.

      2. All links to documents marked [at this Site] should be working. [In the Internet Medieval Sourcebook, but not the other associated sourcebooks, if there is no indication of the file's location then the text is hosted locally and the link should be working.

      3. Users may attempt to locate texts not currently available, or where the links have changed via The Internet Archive/Way Back Machine. Alternately, a search via Google may locate another site where the document is available.  


      Subsidiary Sourcebooks 
       Eastern Asian

      Special Resources
      Medieval Web 
      Medieval NYC
      Medieval Music 

      Saints' Lives Ancient Law
      Medieval Law
      Film: Ancient
      Film: Medieval
      Film: Modern
      Film: Saints

      Open Access Journal: Minerva: The International Review of Anciet Art & Archaeology

       [First posted in AWOL 6 August 2012. Updated 27 March 2015]

      Minerva: The International Review of Anciet Art & Archaeology
      ISSN 0957-7718
      Minerva is the leading international publication focusing on archaeology, the antiquities markets, and exhibitions. Enjoyed by academics and non-specialists alike, Minerva is published six times a year and features a broad range of articles, news, interviews, travel, book reviews and listings of upcoming events.

      ASOR Blog (American Schools of Oriental Research)

      Udhruh and Its Hinterland during the Nabataean and Roman Periods [VIDEO]


      At the 2014 ASOR Annual Meeting, Sarah Wenner presented her paper, “Udhruh and Its Hinterland during the Nabataean and Roman … Read more

      The post Udhruh and Its Hinterland during the Nabataean and Roman Periods [VIDEO] appeared first on The ASOR Blog.

      Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

      Open Access Journal: Cahier des thèmes transversaux ArScAn

      Cahier des thèmes transversaux ArScAn
      L’organisation en huit thèmes transversaux constitue une des originalités scientifiques de l’UMR 7041 ArScAn. Élaborés collectivement, évolutifs, ces thèmes structurent un travail commun au-delà des frontières chronologiques ou géographiques propres aux programmes de recherche de chacune des équipes. Lieux de rencontre des membres de l’UMR, les thèmes sont ouverts à tous. Tout chercheur peut y trouver matière à réflexion, parce que ces thèmes couvrent des champs transversaux de l’archéologie, largement ouverts sur l’ensemble des sciences humaines. La richesse des réponses permet l’interaction des traditions de recherche et la dimension pluridisciplinaire des groupes de travail. Leur particularité réside dans la conduite du débat et de la confrontation d’idées sur les faits, ce qui met en évidence le caractère polysémique des questions traitées.
      Dans cet esprit, des séminaires sont organisés à l’initiative de plusieurs thèmes traitant de champs communs, alors examinés sous des angles différents. Par ailleurs, plusieurs thèmes sont associés à des séminaires de DEA, alliant la volonté d’un partage de connaissances et le souci d’une formation de haut niveau des étudiants par la possibilité de participer directement aux raisonnements et à l’élaboration de données nouvelles. L’état d’avancement des travaux est publié annuellement dans Les Cahiers des thèmes transversaux déposés à la Bibliothèque de la Maison René Ginouvès et consultables sur Internet.
      - 1 Thème Environnement, sociétés, espaces : les moyens d’action et les interactions des communautés humaines avec leur milieu naturel.
      Responsables : Joëlle Burnouf (ArScAn - Archéologies environnementales) et Brigitte Boissavit-Camus (ArScAn-THEMAM)
      - 2 Thème Technique, économie et société.
      Responsables : Pierre Ouzoulias (ArScAn - Archéologies environnementales), Julien Zurbach (ENS) et Claudine Karlin (ArScAn - Ethnologie Préhistorique)
      - 3 Thème Images, textes et sociétés : textes et images conçus pour véhiculer un message.
      Responsables : Luc Bachelot (ArScAn – HAROC) et Claude Pouzadoux (ArScAn - ESPRI)
      - 4 Thème Identités culturelles : processus cognitifs et modes de représentation symbolique.
      Responsables : Anne-Marie Guimier-Sorbets (ArScAn- Monde grec et Systèmes d’Information) et Corinne Debaine-Francfort (ArScAn - Asie Centrale)
      - 5 Thème Cultes, rites et religions : les moyens d’action sur les forces surnaturelles.
      Responsables : Frédérique Valentin (ArScAn - Ethnologie préhistorique), Katerina Chryssanthaki-Nagle (ArScAn - Monde grec : Archéologie et systèmes d’information), Yvette Morizot (ArScAn - Monde grec : Archéologie et systèmes d’information)
      - 6 Thème Outils et méthodes de la recherche : les moyens d’action par et pour la recherche archéologique
      Responsable : Virginie Laniepce-Fromageot (ArScAn - Monde grec : Archéologie et systèmes d’information)
      - 7 Thème Bâti et habitat : processus de construction et dynamique de l’espace construit.
      Responsables : Odile Lebrun (ArScAn - VEPMO) et Pierre-Marie Blanc (ArScAn - APOHR)
      - 8 Thème Habitudes alimentaires : de l’acquisition à la consommation
      Responsables : Hara Procopiou (ArScAn-Protohistoire égéenne) et Cécile Michel (ArScAn-HAROC)
      La numérotation des thèmes correspond à l’ordre dans lequel ils ont été successivement mis en place.
       Dernière mise en ligne du Cahier des Thèmes Transversaux

      Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

      Friday Varia and Quick Hits

      We’re in that delightful time between winter and spring when its still below freezing in the morning but warms over the course of the day. There are enough clouds in the sky to give us beautiful sunrises and sunsets, but not so many to keep the strengthening sun from providing that little extra warmth on our afternoon walks. It’s a lovely time of year. I only wish that it didn’t extend from early March to the middle of May here in North Dakotaland.

      Before I start my usual list of quick hits and varia, I want to remind you to check out my buddy James Bradley Wells new book of poetry, The Kazantzakis Guide to Greece, which is available for pre-order here. It’s $12.40. Preorder it.

      Also, check out our Call-for-Papers for the Bakken Goes Bust? Conference in October, and do listen to the most recent Caraheard podcast

      IMG 3002

      Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

      A Cagliari un incontro sulle tecnologie di acquisizione ed elaborazione 3D per i beni culturali

      Lunedì 30 marzo si terrà a Cagliari il "TADES Symposium 2", incontro sull'applicazione delle tecnologie di acquisizione ed elaborazione 3D per la preservazione e valorizzazione dei beni culturali. L'appuntamento è dalle ore 9:00 alle 12:00 al Museo Archeologico in Piazza Arsenale, 1. L'evento è organizzato dal gruppo Visual Computing del CRS4 con la collaborazione della Soprintendenza Archeologia della Sardegna.

      AMIR: Access to Mideast and Islamic Resources

      Open Access Journal: Kurdish Studies: International peer-reviewed journal of Kurdish Studies

      Kurdish Studies: International peer-reviewed journal of Kurdish Studies
      ISSN: 2051-4883
      e-ISSN: 2051-4891
      Kurdish Studies  journal is an interdisciplinary and peer-reviewed journal dedicated to publishing high quality research and scholarship. Kurdish Studies journal is initiated by the members of the Kurdish Studies Network (KSN) and supported by a large group of academics from different disciplines. The journal aligns itself with KSN's mission to revitalize and reorient research, scholarship and debates in the field of Kurdish Studies in a multidisciplinary fashion covering a wide range of topics including, but not limited to, economics, history, society, gender, minorities, politics, health, law, environment, language, media, culture, arts, and education.


      Vol 1, No 1 (2013)

      Kurdish Studies, Volume 1, Issue # 1, October 2013


      Vol 2, No 1 (2014)

      Kurdish Studies, Volume 2, Issue 1, May 2014
      Open access to the articles in this issue are sponsored by Ahmed Foundation for Kurdish Studies (USA).

      Vol 2, No 2 (2014): Kurdish Linguistics: Focus on Variation and Change Guest edited by Geoffrey Haig & Ergin Öpengin

      Kurdish Studies, Volume 2, Issue 2, October 2014
      Special issue:
      Kurdish Linguistics: Focus on Variation and Change
      Guest edited by Geoffrey Haig & Ergin Öpengin

      Open Access Journal: MELA Notes - The Journal of the Middle East Librarians Association

      [Originally posted in AMIR 19 February 2011. Updated 26 March 2015]

      MELA Notes The Journal of the Middle East Librarians Association
      ISSN 0364-2410
      It is the purpose of the Middle East Librarians' Association to facilitate communication among members through meetings and publications; to improve the quality of area librarianship through the development of standards for the profession and education of Middle East library specialists; to compile and disseminate information concerning Middle East libraries and collections and to represent the judgment of the members in matters affecting them; to encourage cooperation among members and Middle East libraries, especially in the acquisition of materials and the development of bibliographic control; to cooperate with other library and area organizations in projects of mutual concern and benefit; to promote research in and development of indexing and automated techniques as applied to Middle East materials.
      ©2001 Middle East Librarians Association

      MELA Notes is also accessible in JSTOR

      Cooper-Hewitt Labs

      Things people make with our API #347: Nick Bartzokas

      Shortly after Cooper Hewitt opened on December 12, 2014, the museum hosted a private event. At that preliminary scoping for the event, I bumped into Nick Bartzokas who had written a spiffy little application that he was planning on using for visuals on the night. We got talking and it turned out that he’d made it using the Cooper Hewitt API – all with no prompting. Even though it didn’t end up getting fully used, he has released it along with the source code.

      Tell me a bit about yourself, what do you do, where do you do it?

      I’m a creative coder. I like trying out new things. That’s lead me to develop a wide variety of projects: educational games, music visualizations, a Kinect flight simulator, an interactive API-fed wall of Arduinos and Raspberry Pis. These days I’m making interactive installations for the LAB at Rockwell Group. I came to the LAB from the American Museum of Natural History, so museums are in my blood, too.

      The LAB is a unique place. We’re a team of designers, thinkers, and technologists exploring ways to connect the digital with the physical.

      Here’s a couple links to our work: (1 / 2)

      You made a web app for an event at Cooper Hewitt, what was the purpose of it, what does it do?

      Our friends at Metropolis celebrated their magazine’s redesign at the Cooper Hewitt in December 2014. The LAB worked on a one-night-only interactive installation that ran on one of the museum’s 84″ touchtables. We love to experiment, so when opportunities like this come up, we jump at the chance to pick up a new tool and create.

      In preparation for the event, I decided to prototype using Phaser, a 2D Javascript game framework. It markets itself as a tool for making web platformers, but it’s excellent for 2D projects of all kinds.

      It gives you an update and render cycle that’s familiar territory for those that work with other game engines or creative coding toolkits like openFrameworks. It handles user input and asset management well. It has three physics engines of ranging sophistication, from simple Arcade collisions to full-body physics. You can choreograph sprites using built-in tweening. It has PIXI integrated under the hood, which supplies fast graphics with useful shaders and the ability to roll your own. So, lots of range. It’s a great tool for rapid browser-based prototyping.

      The prototype we completed for the event brought Metropolis magazine’s digital assets to life. Photos drifted like leaves on a pond. When touched, they attracted photos of similar objects, assembling into flower petals and fans. If held, they grew excited until bursting apart. It ran in a fullscreened browser and was reponsive to over 40 simultaneous touch points. Here’s that version in action.

      For the other prototype, I used Cooper Hewitt’s API to generate fireworks made of images from the museum’s collection. Since the collection is organized by color, I could ask the API for all the red images in the collection and turn them into a red firework burst.

      I thought this project was really cool, so while it wasn’t selected for the Metropolis event, I decided to complete it anyway and post it..

      OMG! You used the Cooper Hewitt API! How did you find out about the API? What was it like to work with the API? What was the best and the worst thing about the API?

      When the LAB begins a project, we start by considering the story. We were celebrating the Metropolis magazine redesign. Of course that was the main focus. But their launch party was being held at the Cooper Hewitt, and they wrote about Caroline Baumann of the Cooper Hewitt in their launch issue, so the museum was a part of the story. We began gathering source material from Metropolis and Cooper Hewitt. It was then that I re-discovered the Cooper Hewitt API. It was something I’d heard about in the buzz leading up to the museum’s reopening, but this was my first time encountering it in the wild.

      You all did a great job! Working with the API was so straightforward. Everything was well designed. The API website is simple and useful. The documentation is clear and complete with the ability to testdrive API methods in the browser. The structure of the API is sensible and intuitive. I taught a class on API programming for beginners. It was a challenge to select APIs with a low barrier to entry that beginners would be excited about and capable of navigating. Cooper Hewitt’s API is on my list now. I think beginners would find it quick, easy, and rewarding.

      The pyramid diagram on the home page was a nice touch, a modest infographic with a big story behind it. It gives the newcomer a birds eye view of the API, the new gallery apps, the redesigned museum, all the culmination of a tremendous collaboration.

      The ability to search the collection by color immediately jumped out to me. That feature is just rife with creative possibilities. My favorite part, no doubt. In fact, I think it’s worth expanding on the API’s knowledge of color. It knows an image contains blue, but perhaps it could have some sense of how much blue the image contains, perhaps a color average or a histogram.

      In preparing a nodejs app to pull images for the fireworks, I checked to see if someone had written a node module for the Cooper Hewitt API, expecting I’d have to write my own. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the museum’s own Micah Walter authored one . That was another wow moment. When an institution opens up an API, that’s good. But this is really where Cooper Hewitt is building a bridge to the development community. It’s the little things.

      So if others want to play with what you made where can they find it?

      Folks can interact with the prototype here and they can peek at the source code on GitHub.

      Thanks for having me, and congratulations on the API, the museum’s reopening, and a job well done!

      Cultural Heritage Informatics Initiative

      Voyant: DH in the Classroom

      In recent years, teachers in the humanities have begun to see the importance of incorporating technology into our research—if only to make our lives a little bit easier. This change in the way we conduct research has also extended into our classrooms. I aim to adapt my classroom so that it mirrors how students are interacting with the world today, and a large part of that adjustment includes making use of current technology. At times, this has not been an easy evolution, as we all too often teach in the way that we ourselves learned. But not every student we encounter shares our innate love for literature. This means that we must do the best we can to make literature both accessible and interesting to students of the 21st century.

      Because I am using Voyant for my CHI fellowship project, I also intend to use this tool in my classroom. This summer I will teach an Integrated Arts and Humanities course online. Largely intended for non-majors, the course title is, ‘Literature and the Environment: Self, Society, and Nature’. I’ve been brainstorming the ways in which this tool might benefit or otherwise engage non-majors in this subject. Here are some of my collected thoughts on using Voyant in the classroom:

      The use of Voyant helps me integrate my research with my teaching. Students using Voyant are engaging in the same type of research in which I engage. And students new to literary studies see that they can engage in collaborative, digital, and visual methods of literary research. They see that literary studies is not limited to the solitary act of reading, with a professorial figure largely directing the meaning of what they read the night before. Instead, students using Voyant can look for patterns or uncover interesting facets of the text themselves—creating a truly student-centered learning experience.

      Students might track the use of a particular term (or a set of related terms) over the entirety of a novel or play. Perhaps students are asked to locate and then visualize the use of seasonal terms throughout a text; does the use of these terms change in frequency or in terms of specific seasons; how might particular uses draw our eye to pivotal passages within a text?

      Or, students can relate texts to one another over the course of a semester by tracking and then visualizing the same terms over a variety of texts. There is potential for finding surprising connections or conversely, locating defining differences between texts. Using Voyant in this way may initiate conversations regarding the connectedness of texts; students see how texts from different authors, time periods, genres, etc. are similar or different.

      One of the benefits of Voyant is its accessibility. It is extremely user-friendly and the visualizations users create are easily exportable. Students can use Voyant just once (no log-in or download required), for a simple homework or in-class individual or collaborative assignment. Further, this assignment can be extremely student-centered if students are allowed to pursue their own curiosities. Using this text mining and visualization tool to provide proof of the significance of their interest, students learn the value of evidence in forming a thesis. Lastly, of course Voyant may be used as a formative assessment in support of a larger assessment like a traditional research paper.

      Voyant might be especially useful for helping students engage with poetry—a genre that demands attention to detail, sometimes at the level of a single word. Or, for example, students might track the use of pronouns throughout a poetry anthology as a way to reflect upon the speakers and/or subjects.

      Lastly, Voyant might be used for non-literary texts. News articles, blog posts, or journal articles could be tracked visually. And perhaps the most interesting use of Voyant might be for students to track their own writing. This would be especially useful as an end of the term project as students reflect on the papers they completed for class. This assignment would allow students to see what their engagements with the texts were, allowing greater insight into who they are as scholars.

      The limitations to this tool are slim, but should be considered. Texts must be uploaded to Voyant; therefore the text must be in a digital format. Also, I’ve used Voyant in some sophisticated ways, tracking dozens of terms through thirty or so texts and in this way, I’ve reached some of the limitations of the tool; but these are less likely to occur in semester-length student assignments. Lastly, with the use of many digital tools, accommodations might need to be made for students with special learning needs.

      It is my view that Voyant is an excellent tool for reaching students, especially those new to literary students, or students new to the digital humanities. Visualizations can start conversations, they can be created collaboratively, or analyzed collaboratively. Further, Voyant can be used in the face-to-face, hybrid, or digital learning environments. I encourage humanities instructors to use this tool and to cater it to their individual interests, or better yet, their students’ interests.

      March 26, 2015

      Robert Consoli (Squinches)

      Draining of the Copais Basin - Part 2. The Polders

      (I have placed a .kmz and .kml file of the places mentioned in this post on Google Drive, here.  To use just download these files and open them in Google Earth.)

      I felt that it would be useful to my readers if I were to reproduce the conclusions of Kalcyk et al. (1989).  They produced a summary of the work that was performed in the 1980’s and they are particularly useful about the various polders and other features in the region of the northern Copais Basin, particularly the Bay of Topolia.

      1. “In the North-Eastern bay the canal branching off towards the katavothresof Spitia, Binia, Palaiomylos could be identified and surveyed.  It was concluded from the topographical survey that the primary discharge of the major canal led towards the Spitia Katavothra.”[1]

      Illustration 1.  Topolia Bay with channels to main sinkholes.

      I show this in illustration 1.  Here the main channel in orange flows towards katavothra of Biniah; subsidiary branches lead to Spitia and to Palaiomylos.  Kalcyk and his team say that they were able to survey the channels to these katavothres.  On the map I see no definite marks leading to Palaiomylos and have indicated that my path to it is hypothetical.  There are definite visible marks leading to Biniah and to Spitia.  This was the heart of the drainage effort.  The Minyans apparently took advantage of every useful katavothra including the Grand Katavothra which received whatever remained of the Melas.

      2. "During the course of our research we were able to map and interpret completely another dam which had previously been discovered by Kenny and Laufer.  It is much narrower than the dams along the big canal.  Its significance lies in its straight direction.  Its course is changed twice by nearly right-angled turn and this leads to the conclusion that it could hardly have served for hydraulic purposes.
      Between this dam and the dam along the big canal a closed polder with a surface of 8 square km would have been created below the Tourloyannes hill." [2]

      I show the context of their remarks in Illus. 2a and then the proposed structures filled in in illus. 2b.

      Illustration 2a.  Context: North central edge of the Copais Basin.

      Illustration 2b. Reconstruction of polder at Tourlogiannis Hill.
      The polder described by Kalcyk is indicated in transparent white in illus. 2b.  The dam of which he speaks consists of the relatively straight black lines.  I have reconstructed these as best I could.  A circular feature is indicated by Kalcyk along the south bank of the Melas.  I was able to identify it in part.  The entire area enclosed primarily by the hills and the dams is, as I have reconstructed it, 8.47 square km.  Kalcyk's wording seems to indicate that he may have meant to exclude Tourlogiannis Hill itself; doing so lowers the estimate of the size of this polder, as I have reconstructed it, to 7.47 square km.

      3. "Another closed polder, again of 8 square km. surface, could be identified to the North-East of Kastron.  It is limited by the Kapsorouti dam.  This dam leads towards the Palaiomylos katavothra as well as the great canal.  The Kapsorouti dam withholds the direct mountain runoff from the polder and directs it to the katavothres."[3]

      Illustration 3.  Polder stretching from Kastro (lower left) to the Canal.

      I find this passage ambiguous.  By 'Kapsorouti Dam' he intends, I believe, the dark line in illus. 3 which stretches from just north of Kastro and then to the east.[4]   It is difficult to believe that the currents from the Kapsorouti River and other local torrents require a construction like the Kapsorouti Dam.   Nor can I make sense out of the following passage: 'This dam leads towards the Palaiomylos katavothra as well as the great canal' and I think it were better expressed as 'This polder leads towards the Palaiomylos katavothra as well as the great canal'.  I have bounded my reconstruction by the Kapsorouti Dam, the northern edge of Topolia, the channel leading towards the Palaiomylos katavothra, and the great canal.  Termination on the west is notional; I chose to bound it by a hypothetical canal leading to Katavothra no. 3 (no local name that I can establish).  As reconstructed by me, this polder is 8.31 square km.

      4. "Another polder dam ought to exist underneath an old stone dam which serves today as a road from Mytikas to Kastron and which runs into a shore formation.  All indications lead us to believe in its existence; this, however, can only be proved by an excavation."

      Illustration 4.  The Polder of Gla

      This polder surrounds the citadel of Gla itself.  The old road/dam to which Kalcyk refers is labeled 'Polder Dam' on illus. 4.  It would constitute the western boundary of the Polder of Gla.  Its northern boundary is the Minyan Canal and the western edge is the valley that leads up to Kokkino.  The area of this polder, as I have reconstructed it, is 8.47 square km.  There are a number of interesting features in this area as it was intensively investigated by Knauss' team as well as the AROURA study group, beginning in 2010.  There is an interesting diagram map of this area annotated by Knauss himself which can be found here and I encourage my readers to look at it.  The AROURA group conducted three field campaigns of ground surveys in this area between 2010 and 2012.[6]  I have indicated on illus. 4 where their study area centered.  Their reports can be found here along with many interesting photographs.  They have added immeasurably to our knowledge of the Mycenaean works in this area.  Posts such as this can only be a bare summary of what researchers are adding to our knowledge.

      5. "More to the South, in the bay of Dhavlosis another polder exists reaching from Prophitis Elias hill to the rock of Kastraki (ancient Medeon) and thus creating polder land of about 2 square km."[7]

      Illustration 5.  The Polder of Dhavlosis

      I have reconstructed this polder as 2.72 square km. and it has a different shape on the east than it does on Kalcyk's map.  It's difficult for me to see how the polder could be significantly different from the way I have drawn it.

      In the final illustration I show all the polders on the east side of Lake Copais and the Bay of Topolia which I've mentioned in this post so that the reader can see them in context.

      Illus. 6.  The polders of eastern Lake Copais and the Bay of Topolis.

      In my next post I would like to summarize what is known about the great Minyan canal.


      [1] Kalcyk and Heinrich (1989) 61.
      [2] Ibid. 62.  For the work of Kenny and Laufer see this AROURA summary.
      [3] Kalcyk and Heinrich (1989) 62.
      [4] Ibid., fig. 4.3, p. 63.
      [5] Ibid. 62.
      [6] AROURA stands for Archaeological Reconnaissance of Uninvestigated Remains of Agriculture.  It is an official collaboration between the University of Maryland at Baltimore and the 9th Ephorate of Prehistoric and Classical Antiquities (IX EPCA) of the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports.
      [7] Kalcyk and Heinrich (1989) 62.


      Kalcyk et al. (1989): Kalcyk, H. and B. Heinrich, "The Munich Kopais Project" in Boeotia Antiqua I, Papers on Recent Work in Boiotian Archaeology and History. J.M. Fossey, ed.  Amsterdam: Gieben, 1989, 55-71.

      Roger Pearse (Thoughts on Antiquity, Patristics, putting things online, and more)

      75 more Greek manuscripts online at the British Library – the last batch

      The final batch of Greek manuscripts has gone online at the British Library.  This means that pretty much all the mss are now online, except for a few fragments post-1600 bound in other collections; and a few (how many?) not digitised because doing so might damage them.

      Something that I have not mentioned, but which I really appreciate about the British Library digitisations: the catalogue entry for each manuscript, and the indication of the start of each new work.  When you see what other sites sometimes do, you’ll be all the more grateful.

      Here are a few highlights:

      • Add MS 41660, Works by Ephraem the Syrian. 11th-12th century.
      • Add MS 82951, Justin Martyr, Works. Created in Venice in 1541, probably at the request of Guillaume Pelicier.
      • Arundel MS 539, Eusebius of Caesarea, Church History. Decorated headpieces in red and black ink (ff 2r, 164r).  Complete with a  table of contents.
      • Arundel MS 542, Works of St John Chrysostom (some now attributed to Severian of Gabala). 10th century.
      • Arundel MS 543, St John Chrysostom, Homilies on Matthew. 11th century.
      • Burney MS 34, Catena – a medieval bible commentary – on the Octateuch (Rahlfs 424), and additional theological texts. Italy, N. E. (Veneto?), mid-16th century.
      • Burney MS 35, Theodoret of Cyrrhus, Interpretatio in Psalmos. Italy, Central. Written during Lent 1548.
      • Burney MS 46, Works of Athanasius of Alexandria, in two volumes, Burney MS 46/1 and Burney MS 46/2. 2nd half of the 11th century-1st half of the 12th century.
      • Burney MS 47, St John Chrysostom, In Joannem (homiliae 1-45). 11th century.
      • Burney MS 48, Commentaries of St John Chrysostom on the Pauline letters, followed by the Catholic Epistles (Gregory-Aland 643; Scrivener act 225; von Soden α 1402, X40), in two volumes, Burney MS 48/1 and Burney MS 48/2. 11th-12th century.
      • Burney MS 49, Homilies of St John Chrysostom on selected Pauline Epistles. Eastern Mediterranean (Corfu), 1430.
      • Burney MS 50, Apophthegmata Patrum (Collectio alphabetica), in two volumes, Burney MS 50/1 and Burney MS 50/2. Eastern Mediterranean (Crete) 1361-1362.
      • Burney MS 51, Two fragments of the works of St Gregory of Nazianzus, the first dating from the late 10th or 11th century, the second dating from the 14th century. Fragment I possibly from Constantinople.
      • Burney MS 52, Homilies and sermons of St Gregory of Nyssa. 12th-13th century.
      • Burney MS 53, Patristic miscellany, containing texts by Origen, Eustathius, Gregory of Nyssa, and the emperor Zeno. Italy, S. (Naples) or Central (Rome), c. 1580.
      • Burney MS 81, Heron of Alexandria, Pneumatica, with extensive Latin marginal annotations and many pen diagrams. Italy, mid-16th century.
      • Burney MS 94, Grammatical and medical treatises, including works by Manuel Moschopoulos, Thomas Magister, Rufus of Ephesus, and Oribasius of Pergamon. Italy, N. E. (Venice), 2nd half of the 15th century.
      • Burney MS 104. Commentary on and introduction to Ptolemy’s Tetrabiblos. Written in 1543, possibly in Paris.
      • Burney MS 105, Pappas of Alexandria, Synagoge, imperfect, including extracts from the Mechanica of Heron of Alexandria. Italy, 2nd half of the 16th century.
      • Burney MS 408, Palimpsest, the upper (14th-century) text being homilies of St John Chrysostom on Matthew and John, and the lower fragments of a 10th century Gospel lectionary (Gregory-Aland l 338).
      • Egerton MS 265, Collection of novellae and other legal texts by Emperors Leo VI the Wise, Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus, Nicephorus II Phocas, Cosmas Magister and Eustathius Romaeus. 15th century.
      • Egerton MS 2474, Collection of various texts from Pseudo-Plutarch, Synesius of Cyrene, Amphilochius of Iconium, Gregory of Nazianzus, Nicetas David and John Zonaras, with interlinear glosses and marginal scholia. Italy?, 17th century.
      • Egerton MS 2610, Four Gospels (Gregory-Aland 700). 11th century.
      • Egerton MS 2626, Sozomen, Historia ecclesiastica (TLG 2048.001); Evagrius Scholasticus, Historia ecclesiastica (TLG 2733.001). Italy, Central (Rome), 1524.
      • Egerton MS 2783, Four Gospels, imperfect (Gregory-Aland 714). 12th-13th century.
      • Harley MS 5796, New Testament (Gregory-Aland 444; Scrivener evan. 444, Act. 153, Paul 240; von Soden δ 551). 1st half of the 15th century.
      • Royal MS 1 B II, Old Testament: Major and Minor Prophets of the Septuagint version (Rahlfs 22). 1st quarter of the 12th century. Headpieces, initials and titles in carmine ink.
      • Royal MS 2 A VI, Psalter (Rahlfs 175). 12th century. Illuminated headpieces at the start of Psalms 1 and 77 (ff 22r, 154r).
      • Royal MS 16 C XI, Galen, De diebus decretoriis libri III. Italy, 1st quarter of the 16th century.
      • Royal MS 16 C XII,Astronomical works, including John Philoponus on the construction of astrolabes. 1544-3rd quarter of the 16th century.
      • Royal MS 16 C XV,  Two works attributed to Gregory of Nyssa, with marginal notes by Isaac Casaubon and Patrick Young. 3rd quarter of the 16th century.
      • Royal MS 16 D I, Works by or attributed to St Gregory of Nyssa. 13th century.
      • Royal MS 16 D V, St Gregory of Nazianzus, Contra Julianum imperatorem 1-2 (Orationes 4-5). Italy, Central (Rome), 2nd half of the 16th century.
      • Royal MS 16 D VI, St Gregory of Nazianzus, Orationes 7, 8, 18, and 34, with the commentary of Elias of Crete. Italy, Central (Rome), 2nd half of the 16th century.
      • Royal MS 16 D VIII, Acts of the First Council of Nicaea, compiled by Gelasius of Cyzicus, followed by two works by Athanasius. Italy, 4th quarter of the 16th century.
      • Royal MS 16 D XI, St Gregory of Nyssa, selected works. Italy, N. (Venice or Trento), 2nd half of the 16th century.
      • Royal MS 16 D XVII, Clement of Alexandria, Paedagogus, Hymnus Christi servatoris, and an anonymous iambic hymn. 1st half of the 16th century.
      • Royal MS 16 D XVIII, Eustathius Macrembolites, Hysmene et Hysmenias; Achilles Tatius, Leucippe et Clitophon; and [Eustathius Antiochenus], Commentarius in hexaemeron. The works are from three separate manuscripts, bound together at some point after 1697. 1st half of the 16th century.

      And that is just a selection!

      The only thing to wish for is a PDF download for the books.  When you need to do serious work on a manuscript, you don’t want to have to peer through an online viewer.

      Marvellous to have, all the same!

      dh+lib: where the digital humanities and librarianship meet

      CFP: PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference

      The Public Knowledge Project (PKP) is accepting proposals for its annual Scholarly Publishing Conference, to be held August 11-14, 2015 in Vancouver. Suggested topics include:

      • Roles for next generation scholars, researchers, and librarians;
      • Community connections and partnerships among scholarly journals, the digital humanities, and libraries;
      • Open education and open learning;
      • New reading and publishing technologies, e.g., innovative reader interfaces;
      • Sustainability for Open: finance and beyond;
      • From scholarly publishing to scholarly products, e.g. the next generation scholarly monograph;
      • New approaches to assessing research outcomes and impact;
      • The full research lifecycle and new linkages with scholarly publishing, e.g. research data.

      Abstracts are being solicited for 5-minute lightning talks and 2-day development sprint. Deadline for submissions is May 1, 2015.

      RESOURCE: Textual Artifacts and their Digital Representations: Teaching Graduate Students to Build Online Archives

      The new issue of Digital Humanities Quarterly includes an article by Deena Engel and Marion Thain (NYU) on “Textual Artifacts and their Digital Representations: Teaching Graduate Students to Build Online Archives.” From the article abstract:

      Co-teaching a digital archives course (ENGL-GA.2971) for graduate students in the English Department allowed us to bring together our expertise in both research and pedagogy from two fields: English Literature and Computer Science. The course built on a core pedagogical principle in Computer Science of teaching through projects rather than from unrelated one-off programming or web development assignments. Teaching the Text Encoding Initiative after students had completed hands-on projects (using xHTML, CSS, and a digital archive working in a standard content management system) enabled the building of technological skill sets in a logical and complementary manner. From a literary perspective, building a digital archive — and teaching text encoding — enabled an in-depth consideration of textual materiality, the processes through which literary scholarship must inform technological building decisions, and the ways in which the act of digitization can be used to ask new questions of the text (or to prompt the text to ask new questions of itself). This paper will survey our techniques and approaches to interdisciplinary teaching, culminating in our usage of text encoding for exploring issues of textuality through digital presentation.

      POST: Digitization Challenges – A Discussion in Progress

      Merrilee Proffitt (OCLC) gives an overview of challenges currently faced by libraries working to digitize collections, as reported in a series of discussions hosted by OCLC Research. These challenges, which will inform future work from  OCLC Research, include:

      Metadata: Item-level description vs collection descriptions
      “…there is an inherent challenge in digitizing collections at the item or page level when the bulk of the description is at a collection level.”

      Process management / workflow / shift from projects to programs
      “Some institutions are looking to establish workflows that will more effectively allow them to leverage patron-driven requests, while others are thinking about the implications of contributing content to aggregators like DPLA.”

      Selection – prioritizing users over curators and funders
      “Many institutions are still operating under a model whereby curators or subject librarians feed the selection pool, either through a formal or informal process.”

      Audio/Visual materials
      “As with born digital, everyone has A/V materials in their collection, and making them more accessible is a concern.”

      Access: are we putting things where scholars can find them
      “For many institutions, aggregation is the name of the game, and thinking as a community about aggregating content is key.”

      JOB: Digital Archive Summer Fellowship, HistoryMakers

      From the description:

      The James A. Lindner Digital Archive Summer Fellow’s primary tasks will include the arrangement, description and preservation of The HistoryMakers Collection. The Fellow will help migrate digital footage, enter metadata into The HistoryMakers FileMaker Pro database, and process The HistoryMakers video oral history interviews, both analog and born-digital, as well as captioning photographs and multimedia submissions. The Fellow will gain valuable experience working with The HistoryMakers unique Digital Archive and creating finding aids. The Fellow’s duties will also include assisting in digital curation and preparing descriptive, technical, and other metadata. The Fellow will learn about employing best practices to ensure the long-term availability and discoverability of the digital content in The HistoryMakersCollection. The Fellow will work with FileMaker Pro as an electronic resource for tracking and indexing collection materials online or through other media. This includes managing the care and handling of born-digital and analog collection materials yet to be digitized.

      JOB: Digital Humanities Intern, JSTOR

      From the announcement:

      The Digital Humanities Intern (DH) will work the JSTOR Labs team to extend Understanding Shakespeare, its partnership project with the Folger Shakespeare Library. Understanding Shakespeare has shown a new way of connecting primary texts with the literature about them, and the DH Intern will play a pivotal role in making this resource even more transformative. To do so, the DH Intern will work with the JSTOR Labs team to create a public API to the data within, Understanding Shakespeare. He or she will then create a series of public demonstrator visualizations and applications on top of the API, answering questions such as: which plays have shown steady academic interest over time and which have been the most “trendy?” How have quotation-rates of male vs. female characters in Shakespeare’s plays changed over time? What are the differences between disciplines in most-cited play, character, and line?

      AMIR: Access to Mideast and Islamic Resources

      The Clarion Project: Challenging Extremism, Promoting Dialogue

      The Clarion Project: Challenging Extremism, Promoting Dialogue
       The Clarion Project
      Founded in 2006, Clarion Project (formerly Clarion Fund Inc) is an independently funded, non-profit organization dedicated to exposing the dangers of Islamic extremism while providing a platform for the voices of moderation and promoting grassroots activism. 

      Clarion’s award-winning movies have been seen by over 50 million people. They grapple with issues such as religious persecution, human rights, women’s rights, the dangers of a nuclear Iran and what the concept of jihad means for the West. Our dynamic website, viewed by 1.1 million unique visitors in 2014, covers breaking news, provides expert analysis on relevant issues and acts as a platform for Muslim human rights activists. 

      Clarion Project draws together Middle East experts, scholars, human rights activists and Muslims to promote tolerance and moderation and challenge extremism.

      The Clarion Project archives scans of Dabiq: The Islamic State's (ISIS) Magazine

      Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

      Diccionario micénico: Índices Generales de la Lineal B

      [First posted in AWOL 26 January 2012, updated 26 March 2015]

      Diccionario micénico: Índices Generales de la Lineal B

      Presentación general de la Segunda Edición del Diccionario Micénico (DMic.2)

      por Francisco Aura Jorro (director)


      La naturaleza provisional de una gran parte del trabajo realizado hasta ahora para la redacción de la segunda edición del Diccionario Micénico aconseja su difusión de una manera que permita tanto su uso inmediato por parte de los colegas interesados como la incorporación, rápida y fácil, de las sucesivas correcciones o actualizaciones que necesita ese material, en tanto no pueda alcanzar, por diferentes razones, una cierta estabilidad que permita su edición impresa.
      Con carácter previo se han hecho circular entre varios colegas versiones anteriores de los materiales, pero siempre dentro de una difusión muy limitada. Dada la capacidad como herramienta de difusión de Internet, nos ha parecido al equipo redactor de esta segunda edición del DMic. que el medio más aconsejable para este propósito es abrir una página web en la que vayan apareciendo, a disposición de todos los interesados, los trabajos generados en la redacción de nuestro proyecto.

      Open Access Journal: Mouseion: Journal of the Classical Association of Canada (formerly Classical Views/Echos du Monde Classique

      [First posted in AWOL 5 November 2009. Updated 26 March  2015.  Mouseion is now part of Project Muse.  Most volumes remain open access at the links below courtesy of the Memorial University Digital Archives Initiative (DAI)]

      Mouseion: Journal of the Classical Association of Canada (formerly Classical Views/Echos du Monde Classique ISSN 0012-935)
      E-ISSN: 1913-5416
      Print ISSN: 1496-9343
      Journal of the Classical Association of Canada
      Mouseion aims to be a distinctively comprehensive Canadian journal of Classical Studies, publishing articles and reviews in both French and English. One issue annually is normally devoted to archaeological topics, including field reports, finds analysis, and the history of art in antiquity. The other two issues welcome work in all areas of interest to scholars; this includes both traditional and innovative research in philology, history, philosophy, pedagogy, and reception studies, as well as original work in and translations into Greek and Latin.

      Mouseion se présente comme un périodique canadien d'études classiques polyvalent, publiant des articles et comptes rendus en français et en anglais.
      Un fascicule par année est normalement dédié à des sujets archéologiques, incluant des rapports préliminaires de fouilles, des études de matériel et des études d'histoire de l'art antique. Les deux autres fascicules présentent des études dans tous les domaines d'intérêt pour les chercheurs, ce qui inclut à la fois les recherches traditionnelles ou novatrices en philologie, en histoire, en philosophie et en pédagogie ou relatives à l'influence des études classiques en dehors du monde universitaire; Mouseion publie également des travaux originaux rédigés ou traduits en latin ou en grec ancien.

      Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

      Analisi LIDAR e GPR aiutano a rivelare l'origine di Trieste e antiche fortificazioni romane

      Un team interdisciplinare di scienziati coordinato dall' International Centre for Theroretical Physics di Trieste ed il Centro Fermi di Roma ha recentemente raggiunto importanti risultati in merito alle origini storiche di Trieste. 

      Tom Brughmans (Archaeological Network Analysis)

      Call for nominations CAA Nick Ryan student bursary 2015

      To honour the work of it’s longstanding chair Nick Ryan, CAA International provides the annual Nick Ryan Bursary. The Nick Ryan Bursary will be chosen from this year’s student paper presenters. The award will go towards the costs of attending next year’s conference in Oslo, up to a maximum of 1,000 Euros. The winner will […]

      Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

      Nuove opportunità di sviluppo per il Green Building Council Italia

      Il Dipartimento di Architettura dell’Università di Ferrara ospita la presentazione delle nuove opportunità di sviluppo dell’Associazione Green Building Council Italia, da sempre impegnata nel favorire ed accelerare la diffusione di una cultura dell’edilizia sostenibile.

      The Signal: Digital Preservation

      Checking in with NGAC and the National Spatial Data Infrastructure

      Satellite data, January 1, 2014. Photo courtesy of NCDC/NOAA.

      Satellite data, January 1, 2014. Photo courtesy of NCDC/NOAA.

      Several times a year I attend meetings of the National Geospatial Advisory Committee, a federal advisory committee that reports to the chair of the Federal Geographic Data Committee. The NGAC pulls together participants from across academia, the private sector and all levels of government to advise the Federal government on geospatial policy and ways to advance the vision of a National Spatial Data Infrastructure. They held two days of meetings in DC on March 17 and 18, 2015 and I was happy to have the opportunity to attend.

      We originally got involved with the group when two members of the GeoMAPP project team (Zsolt Nagy and Dennis Goreham) were named founding NGAC members (PDF) and we’ve kept up with it because of the wealth of information that comes out of the meetings about national geospatial policy initiatives.

      The group’s membership changes over time, but in the past has included Jack Dangermond, the founder of Esri, and currently includes both Michael Jones of Google (one of the inventors of Google Earth) and Steve Coast, the founder of OpenStreetMap.

      Julie Sweetkind-Singer, the Assistant Director of Geospatial, Cartographic and Scientific Data & Services at Stanford University libraries and a former principal investigator on the NDIIPP National Geospatial Digital Archive project, is now the Vice Chair of the group.

      As usual, the committee covered a number of topic areas that have ramifications for the library, archive and museum digital stewardship communities.

      FGDC Report/GAO Report

      A chief area of discussion in the FGDC’s report to the attendees was the March 16 release of the Government Accountability Office report “Geospatial Data: Progress Needed on Identifying Expenditures, Building and Utilizing a Data Infrastructure, and Reducing Duplicative Efforts.” This is the second GAO report in the past 3 years on geospatial information, with the first, “Geospatial Information: OMB and Agencies Need to Make Coordination a Priority to Reduce Duplication,” having been released on November 26, 2012.

      GAO’s objectives with the report were to

      (1) describe the geospatial data that selected federal agencies and states use and how much is spent on geospatial data; (2) assess progress in establishing the National Spatial Data Infrastructure; and (3) determine whether selected federal agencies and states invest in duplicative geospatial data.

      The report urged Congressional input towards a national addressing database, while also recommending that the Office of Management and Budget and associated federal agencies fully implement national spatial data infrastructure activities.

      Crowd-Sourced Geospatial Data

      Next came an interesting presentation on the concepts of crowd-sourced data, citizen science and volunteered geographic information, as well as crowd-sourced data initiatives happening inside the Federal government. It featured Sophia Liu, a Mendenhall Postdoc Fellow at the U.S. Geological Survey; Denice Ross, a Presidential Innovation Fellow at the Department of Energy; and Sean Gorman from Timbr.io.

      Key questions that crossed each of the presentations included the challenges with integrating crowd-sourced data with agency-originated data while validating its integrity, as well as potential legal consequences when agencies rely on crowd-sourced data for action. One suggested way to address the validity question is to incorporate a “human-in-the-loop” to vet, edit or “massage” crowd-sourced data to ensure its accuracy and usability. See http://radar.oreilly.com/2015/02/human-in-the-loop-machine-learning.html for further info.

      There was also a bit of discussion on the difference between “ambient” crowd-sourced data (think traffic data compiled from the location reports of cell phones) and volunteered geographic information such as that found in citizen-mapping initiatives such as OpenStreetMap.

      Geospatial Privacy Subcommittee Report

      The Geospatial Privacy Subcommittee of the NGAC is largely exploring the privacy challenges presented by Unmanned Aircraft Systems and as such is somewhat out of our purview. An important recent document on this front is “Presidential Memorandum: Promoting Economic Competitiveness While Safeguarding Privacy, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties in Domestic Use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems” released on Feb. 15, 2015.

      COGO Report card

      Geospatial: application by user dleithinger on Flickr

      Geospatial: application by user dleithinger on Flickr

      COGO is the Coalition of Geospatial Organizations, a grouping of private sector geospatial organizations such as the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS), Association of American Geographers (AAG), National States Geographic Information Council (NSGIC) and a number of others.

      On February 16, 2015 they published their first “Report Card on the U.S. National Spatial Data Infrastructure” (PDF). The report was written by an expert panel led by former Wyoming governor James E. Geringer (who presented the findings at the meeting). The focus of the initial report card is on the status of the seven FGDC “framework” data layers and how they are being maintained and accentuated to meet the needs of a national spatial data infrastructure. As the report says, “by evaluating the Federal government’s efforts to lead and coordinate the creation and maintenance of these data, this report reflects on how well the NSDI is meeting its goals.” According to COGO the student is not doing too well.

      There was ample discussion on whether COGO was measuring the right thing (is it a measure of what’s actually getting done in a somewhat hostile budgetary environment, or are agencies being measured against an abstract standard of what should be done based on the original goals of the NSDI?) and whether this report could do more harm than good for acquiring future resources across the federal geospatial community.

      During the discussion on the report it was noted that the 2016 President’s budget includes an increase of nearly $150 million for the USGS, including “an increase of $11 million for the USGS to support the community resilience toolkit, which is a web-based clearinghouse of data, tools, shared applications, and best practices for resource managers, decision-makers, and the public,” so at least there’s recognition that work does need to get done.

      Geospatial Data Act of 2015

      Finally, not on the meeting agenda but hanging over all the discussions was the “Geospatial Data Act of 2015,” introduced by Senators Hatch and Warner on March 16, 2015, the day prior to the start of the meeting. The text of the legislation is at https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/senate-bill/740/text, and my initial reading (note: I am not a lawyer!) is that it codifies in law things that are attempting to be implemented in current practice. Several important items in the proposed bill:

      • Each covered agency shall include geospatial data as a capital asset for purposes of preparing the budget submission of the President.
      • Each covered agency shall disclose each contract, cooperative agreement, grant or other transaction that deals with geospatial data on USAspending.gov.
      • Greater OMB oversight, and a limitation on receiving future funds for data that does not conform to FGDC standards.

      The next NGAC meeting is June 9-10, 2015. As always, they are open to the public.

      Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

      Tecnologie innovative per il recupero della Villa dei Misteri

      Sono tecnologie avanzate quelle recentemente applicate al restauro della Villa dei Misteri di Pompei, in parte recentemente aperta al pubblico. Gli esperti dell’Unità Tecnica Protezione Sismica e del Laboratorio Prevenzione Rischi Naturali e Mitigazione Effetti di ENEA (Agenzia per le nuove tecnologie, l’energia e lo sviluppo economico sostenibile) stanno collaborando alle attività di indagine per il recupero strutturale di una parte della domus ancora chiusa al pubblico.

      Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

      Poetry for Greece

      My post today is about poetry. It is also an advertisement. It’s not, an advertisement for myself, which will probably come as a shock to many of you.

      My old friend James Bradley Wells has prepared his second book of poetry, The Kazantzakis Guide to Greece. His first book of poems, Bicycle, appeared a few years ago and you can get it here. He also wrote a book on Pindar.

      If you like Greece and like poetry, then you should pre-order a copy of his book


      So, I’m advertising James’s poetry book here for a few reasons. First, the book is about Greece and is due to appear on July 15th. While I complained that this publication date made it impossible for me to take the book to Greece and read it after a long day in the field, James assured me that the best time for reading this book is in the late summer as I reminisce (fondly at that point) about my times in Greece while sitting on my front porch ignoring the start of the semester.  

      Some of the poems came from his time at the American School of Classical Studies when we had neighboring rooms in the annex. He introduced me to performance theory and Erving Goffman and Richard Bauman, and patiently (tried to) explain to me how their ideas could expand my reading of Pierre Bourdieu and Anthony Giddens. To this day, I have never felt smarter (and more humble) than when I was sitting at Kolonaki Square with James on a Sunday morning, drinking coffee, talking about our work.

      I can clearly recall his excitement when he returned from Crete having seen Katzantzakis’s tomb in Heraklion. So while I’m just making my way through a generously-offer (ok, I begged) manuscript now, I can already hear certain rhythms in his poetry that remind me of my time in Athens over a decade ago, and the list of sites evokes will only be more meaningful to people who endured the famous American School Regular Program. The American School should certainly pre-order a copy and add it to their collection of work produced under their auspices.

      Finally, the book is being published by a small, but award winning press in Georgetown, Kentucky: Finish Line Press. They are counting on a certain number of pre-orders before they’ll begin production. While this might horrify those of us used to working with larger commercial ventures or subsidized academic, university presses, these kinds of strategies are what small presses need to do to make ends meet. What I like about this system, though, is that it makes buying this book less of a straight commercial transaction (I want, so I buy) and more of a decision about whether one thinks this kind of thing should exist. 

      Here is some of the poetry:

      I do not have the tonguefeel for nomenclature.
      Names of things are the second fork beside
      a dinner plate. I never know just what

      to say if checkerspots, coppers, elfins, azures,
      metalmarks light upon salvia, lavender blossoms,
      coneflower, or coreopsis. If cedar waxwing

      or purple finch complains when I compete
      with them and pick serviceberries, I do not know
      the words to mark the surprise of its being the case

      that these creatures heckle me so. Nomenclature clouds
      me over, but the panorama of wing
      possesses me. A skybound god’s same unsayable

      hemline trailing down the aisle of time’s
      cathedral, wing and horizon are the same.


      Here’s some more, a ghazal (which is not the same as an antelope, but some form of poetry). For those who know something about poetry and the ghazal, in particular, check out the last line for some insider, poetry cleverness. This is what happens when someone who studies Pindar

      Olympia in nimbostratus October chronicles the word naós.
      Zeus Olympios, Phidias’ art, Jesus Pancrator, each Lord’s naós.

      Gold leaf, ivory panels, glass sheets, jewels, and copper fixed
      to wooden core, the skyscraping icon dwelt in god’s naós.

      One of the ancient world’s seven wonders, Phidias sculpted
      Lord Zeus’ icon in his unquitting workshop, this replica naós.

      Libation vessels, golden censers, the table where the reverent
      offered bread, Antiochus pillaged the Jewish Lord’s naós.

      Assyrians handwove a woolen curtain dyed in Tyrian purple,
      the Temple veil that Antiochus offered at Zeus’ naós.

      Archaeologists discovered sculptor’s tools, terra cotta molds,
      centuries after Christians repurposed Phidias’ replica naós.

      I belong to Phidias inscribed on the bottom of a cup.
      Lichened, pockmarked column drums, Greek is a language scarred by naós.


      So pre-order copies of his book for yourself (because it’s good), for other people (as a gift), and for the entire community. Doing what we can for small presses like this to thrive and for passionate work to see the light of day is good for everyone. Plus, the book only costs a penny less than $12.50.  

      Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

      Workshop su prevenzione e valutazione del rischio negli archivi

      Il 21 Aprile 2015 a Milano si terrà il secondo workshop CINEAS su Prevenzione e valutazione del rischio negli archivi organizzato in collaborazione con Prodoc.
      Il workshop affronterà il tema della valutazione dei rischi e dei danni di archivi, biblioteche e opere d’arte. Dall’importanza della prevenzione alla gestione dell’emergenza, l’obiettivo è quello di fornire gli elementi per intervenire in modo appropriato in caso di sinistri e per valutare l’impatto dei danni sui beni culturali e sugli ambienti che li contengono. Il workshop si rivolge a periti assicurativi, broker, direttori di archivi, biblioteche e fondazioni pubbliche e private.

      II Conferenza Internazionale sulla Realtà Virtuale e Aumentata, proroga Call for Papers

      E' stata prorogata la scadenza per la sottomissione di articoli e poster per la Seconda Conferenza Internazionale sulla Realtà Virtuale e Aumentata (SALENTO AVR 2015) dal titolo "Dove mondo virtuale e realtà si fondono" in programma a Lecce dal 31 Agosto al 3 settembre 2015. L'evento nasce con lo scopo di riunire una comunità di ricercatori del mondo universitario e delle aziende, computer scientist, ingegneri, fisici, per condividere punti di vista, conoscenze, esperienze e risultati scientifici e tecnici relativi alle soluzioni allo stato dell'arte e le tecnologie sulle applicazioni sulla realtà virtuale e aumentata per la medicina, i beni culturali, l'educazione, i settori industriali, così come la dimostrazione di prodotti avanzati e le tecnologie.

      Una Summer School sul 3D per l'Antropologia e l'Archeologia

      L'Università di Bologna organizza dal 1 al 10 luglio 2015 presso il Dipartimento dei Beni Culturali a Ravenna una Summer School dedicata all'acquisizione e gestione dei dati 3D per l'Antropologia e l'Archeologia.