New research suggests it would have been impossible to stampede mammoths to their deaths over cliffs at La Cotte de St Brelade in Jersey - one of the most important Neanderthal sites in Europe
Tom Elliott (email@example.com)
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New research suggests it would have been impossible to stampede mammoths to their deaths over cliffs at La Cotte de St Brelade in Jersey - one of the most important Neanderthal sites in Europe
IN THE MAIL (from the publisher):K. L. Noll, Canaan and Israel in Antiquity: A Textbook on History and Religion: Second Edition (London: Boomsbury T&T Clark, 2013)To any publishers who are regular readers: I am always happy to mention any book you may send me as long as it is directly relevant to ancient Judaism. Sometimes publishers send me things about, say, the modern Diaspora or modern Jewish ethics or the like. I don't post such things here, because this blog is about ancient Judaism.
This comprehensive classic textbook represents the most recent approaches to the biblical world by surveying Palestine's social, political, economic, religious and ecological changes from Palaeolithic to Roman eras. Designed for beginners with little knowledge of the ancient world, and with copious illustrations and charts, it explains how and why academic study of the past is undertaken, as well as the differences between historical and theological scholarship and the differences between ancient and modern genres of history writing. Classroom tested chapters emphasize the authenticity of the Bible as a product of an ancient culture, and the many problems with the biblical narrative as a historical source. Neither "maximalist" nor "minimalist" it is sufficiently general to avoid confusion and to allow the assignment of supplementary readings such as biblical narratives and ancient Near Eastern texts. This new edition has been fully revised, incorporating new graphics and English translations of Near Eastern inscriptions. New material on the religiously diverse environment of Ancient Israel taking into account the latest archaeological discussions brings this book right up to date.
Under the China-US memorandum, the US has returned an ancient stone coffin of the Imperial Concubine Wuhu (d. 737) dating to the Tang Dynasty to China. It marks the culmination of a four-year investigation.Some two and half meters tall and almost 4 meters long, the coffin is recognised as an extreme rarity, not only for its thousand-year history but also for the delicately preserved art on its exterior. "As far as I know, this is the largest and most beautifully built cultural relic to have been discovered from the Tang Dynasty." Shi Xiaoqun, Shaanxi History Museum said. Back in February 2006, Xi'an police discovered that the coffin had been stolen, during a tomb robbery. Two years later, they found out it had been dismantled, transported across the border, and sold to an American antique dealer for a million US dollars. The China-US memo calls for such smuggled items to be returned unconditionally. Following a marathon of negotiations with the US government and the buyer, the coffin was finally located and returned to China's State Administration of Cultural Heritage. "We have to have concrete proof that the cultural relic was smuggled out of the country, before we can seek its return. As long as we are very clear on each and every process of the smuggling, we can we negotiate with other countries." Professor Wang Yunxia, Law School, Renmin Univ. of China said. The black market for ancient cultural relics is booming. International smuggling is becoming more and more common. But it's hoped that the extension of the China-US agreement will help to contain the problem, and bring more of these historically important artifacts back home, to where they belong.That of course is what the US dealers opposing it want to prevent, they say that shutting down the opportunities for trade of illicitly exported items gives Chinese buyers an "unfair advantage". The coffin was shipped from Virginia on March 16 and arrived at the Shaanxi History Museum on Thursday.
US returns Tang Dynasty stone coffin to China
Egypt has announced Friday, March 7, 2014, that a team of European archaeologists have found a nearly 2-meter- (6 ½-foot-) tall alabaster statue of a pharaonic princess, dating from approximately 1350 B.C., outside the southern city of Luxor (Source: Washington Post).
“Egypt has announced that a team of European archaeologists have found a nearly 2-meter- (6 ½-foot-) tall alabaster statue of a pharaonic princess, dating from approximately 1350 B.C., outside the southern city of Luxor.
Minister of Antiquities Mohammed Ibrahim said in in a statement Friday that the statue was once part of a larger statue that was nearly 14 meters (456 feet) tall and guarded the entrance to a temple.
Ibrahim says the statue is of Iset, the daughter of Amenhotep III, and is the first found that depicts her without her siblings. Archaeologists uncovered the statue next to the funerary temple of Amenhotep III, who was worshipped as a deity after his death” – via Washington Post.
Paul Peachey, 'Ex-BBC man attempted to sell artefact plundered in Arab Spring ', Independent, Friday 07 March 2014. This is a followup to an old story (see: 'Today, Egypt Challenges Christie's', Thursday, 2 May 2013; 'Ahram, English Dealer Arrested over Christie's Antiquities?', Sunday, 5 May 2013; 'UK Antiquities Seller Bailed (Ahram)' Friday, 10 May 2013; 'Man to Answer More Questions on Egypt Artefacts?' Thursday, 1 August 2013; 'British Man Charged Over Looted Egyptian Antiquities', PACHI Tuesday, 6 August 2013; 'The May 2013 Christie's Antiquity Bust', Friday, 9 August 2013; 'Guilty: "Property of a Gentleman" Antiquities "bought in Souvenir Shop"....', PACHI Thursday, 5 September 2013; see also Martin Bailey and Melanie Gerlis, 'Guilty plea over antiquities' Art Newspaper, Issue 249, 5th September 2013). The Independent is for some reason carrying this news story, the only "new" development seems to be that the author is sensationalising (but I guess confirming the suspicions about) the identity of the man involved.
Neil Kingsbury, 64, is identified in the article as a former BBC sound recordist. He has already admitted fraudulently trying to sell a statue fragment, looted in Egypt which he smuggled out of the country after being there making a documentary programme. Readers will remember he had claimed they had been in the family a long time to circumvent the law banning the export of antiques introduced by the Egyptian government in 1983. Kingsbury:
Mr Kingsbury's antiquities (withdrawn from Christie's sale)bought artefacts from an apparently upmarket souvenir shop during holidays in Egypt and then tried to sell them at Christie’s and Bonhams by pretending that they had been given to him by his late uncle who served in the country during the Second World War. [...] The granite fragment, along with five others between 3,000 and 4,000 years old, were pulled from the Christie’s sale, just days before it was due to start on 2 May last year. They had been listed as the “property of a gentleman” when they were put up for sale. Kingsbury, from Northwood in north-west London, was arrested and admitted what he had done. He said he bought the items from a “good chap” called Mohammed who owned a series of shops including one in a five-star hotel complex in Luxor, across the Nile from the temple complex of Thebes, where he regularly stayed. [...] He claimed that he was told by Mohammed that he should tell the two auction houses that he had inherited them [...] Isleworth Crown Court was told.The deception was uncovered by a curator at the British Museum who spotted in an auction catalogue that the red granite fragment of a Nubian prisoner was from the base of a royal statue at the temple of Amenhotep III in Western Thebes. The fragment had been excavated in 2000 and had been deliberately broken by the looters to hide where it came from. Dr Hourig Sourouzian said it had been stolen from storage after 2002 and could have been taken along with two statue heads in the widespread looting that followed the downfall of Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
Kingsbury brought other items back to Britain too, and previously had sold them through London auction houses:He sold items at two auctions – one at Bonhams and one at Christie’s – before the deception was uncovered by Mr Maree during his third attempt at a public sale of items including the granite fragment from the time of Amenhotep III.Sadly,One item – a painted stone relief of a man and woman – that he bought for a few hundred pounds was sold for £13,000 at auction. The buyer has so far declined to return the item, said Kate Blumgart, for the prosecution.Kingsbury admitted three counts of fraud last year. A charge of possession of criminal property was dropped at a hearing on Wednesday and he will be sentenced on 14 April. Kingsbury was told he would not be sent to prison. Police accepted that he was not a “major player”, but he made more than £10,000 profit from his deals.
UK metal detectorist Andy Baines has obviously decided that one way to attract readers is to provoke what many of them see as "enemies of detecting" such as that Mr B over in Poland. His blog and the comments are full of references to the guy. So a story (Tuesday, 4 March 2014, 'Canada- coin find could change history') of a coin find in Canada is presented in the following manner:
'The Gorge' at low
tide (the History Blog)This story may rattle Mr Barfords cage. It seems a metal detectorist has found a coin that may rewrite what we know about the discovery of Canada. Yet more proof of what we do and how we find history.The story is that in mid-December last year, metal detectorist Bruce Campbell (from Victoria, British Columbia) found a 16th century shilling of Edward VI (thus struck between 1551 and 1553) buried in clay on the shores of Vancouver Island, on 'the Gorge' at Curtis Point (48°26'40.81"N 123°23'40.87"W). It was found along with a rare 1891 Canadian nickel, a penny from 1900 and a 1960s dime. This is being hailed as evidence "that English explorer Sir Francis Drake travelled as far north as Canada's Pacific Coast during an expedition to California in 1579", a trip hypothesised by Samuel Bawlf: "The Secret Voyage of Sir Francis Drake".
Mr Baines' provocative promotion of this tekkie feelgood tale did not 'rattle my cage' for two main reasons. The first is the story was over a month old when Baines spotted it, and I was not very interested in it when it first broke (Lindsay Kines, '16th-century English shilling found in Gorge', Times Colonist January 8, 2014). This find seems to me to be at least suspicious, fitting neatly into a local amateur historian's theory about the founding of the "first English colony in North America" precisely here (the bones of the theory itself may have been pinched from somebody else and adapted to fit the author's own country rather than Oregon).
The second reason that I was not too impressed with the claim of "how we find history" is that it represents just the sort of wonky logic of the artefact collecting numpties, and how they envisage the whole question about the methodology of historical enquiry. If I were to find a coin of Edward VI lying in the surface exposed by turf stripping in a park here in Warsaw along with 1960s coins, I do not think I'd be postulating a 'secret' sixteenth century English invasion of Poland. For Mr Campbell's coin to mean that Drake sailed up the coast here, it would have to be securely stratified in a site, perhaps associated with material that could be carbon-dated to the period around 1580. Mr Cambell however hoiked it out of some mud on a stretch of the river that has seen dumping in the past and at the same time he found much later material. The tragedy is, as the comments section to another, older article on the find showed, Mr Campbell had been asked to keep off that stretch of the foreshore as there were ancient stratified sites there. There are lingering doubts in my mind about the actual story of the way Mr Cambell found this coin and presented it on a forum.
Dimitri Nakassis ('Papyrus, clay, and the market ', Aegean prehistory March 6, 2014) discusses two articles about the publication of ancient texts of unknown provenance and the ethical issues of publication. The first was Doug Boin’s op-ed in the New York Times about the forthcoming publication of two new fragments of Sappho, the second is Jerry Cooper’s 'Cuneiform-exceptionalism' argument on the ASOR blog for publishing cuneiform tablets that do not have a provenance.
Commenting on the Sappho papyrus, he points out:it might seem a bit odd that more information about the provenance of the papyrus wasn’t provided. But actually, it’s not too surprising when you realize that most people just don’t care. Even if the papyrus were illegal, does anyone really believe that scholars would uniformly, or even as a majority, refuse to publish two new fragments of Sappho? This is not to accuse papyrologists of being unethical. They’re not. But there is, it seems to me, a sense that different rules apply to texts [...] Why?Because they are addressed sources, intended in themselves to provide information, which can include to some extent some kind of context for the other information. Jerry Cooper suggested that "it is unknown whether publications of cuneiform texts help create a market for cuneiform tablets and thus encourage looting and site destruction”. Nakassis points out that it is illogical to argue from the position of ignorance to come to the conclusion it probably does not matter it’s illogical. Doesn’t one need to have an answer to such a question?Here, it seems to me, is the crux of the issue. Cooper doesn’t know whether publishing encourages looting, but it seems that he really doesn’t want to know, because first of all, it’s awful — “no cuneiformist could be unmoved by the moonscape images of looted sites” — but even if there were a direct and demonstrable link between publication, the market, and looting, he couldn’t bear to ignore half of the evidence that bears on his subject anyway. That hardly seems like a defensible position to me. It’s a rationalization of an established practice, which is to publish texts that don’t have good archaeological provenience.Nakassis sees similar thought processes going on in both cases, the finds are felt by scholars focusing their attention on such material to be so spectacular, too important, for scholars to ignore. The disregard paid to the provenance of these fragments is not so much intentional, but simply reflects the traditional priorities of scholarly practice. He regards these priorities as "unfortunate".
We see very similar arguments being advanced by another large group of people concerned with addressed sources, coin collectors and numismatists which seem to be dragging their heels in contrast to the rest of the archaeological world with regard to the need to tackle the problem of the no-questions-asked antiquities trade. .
Nine Palmyran style sculptures "seized from looters" in Syria have been publicised on the DCAM site . They are rather clumsy and one wonders whether these are not fakes that have been produced to take advantage of the no-questions-asked market that has arisen for Syrian combat antiquities.
A few days ago Kate Fitz Gibbon published a text in the Art Newspaper rehearsing the trade's tired old argument (much seen on the Tompa blog too) that restricting the movement of items illegally exported from China "unfairly" gives the internal Chinese art trade and collectors an advantage over US dealers and collectors. I rather thought that keeping these goods in China instead of scattering them among the wealthy buyers outside which was the whole point of fighting smuggling.
Anyhow, Laetitia La Follette (University of Massachusetts Amherst) in reply put over a welcome and more balanced point of view in the web edition of the Art Newspaper ("America’s agreement with China creates opportunities as well as challenges" 1st March 2014). Her point is if the US, following the demands of dealers and collectors leaves the bargaining table, "it could lose leverage in the cultural policy arena". She says Fitz-Gibon's article "misleads in two important ways. First, this agreement with China goes far beyond import restrictions" which are only part of the deal:"the US agreed to restrict the import into this country of undocumented archaeological and ethnological materials whose pillage threatens the cultural patrimony of the requesting nation".An extensive part of her text lists a persuasive catalogue of ways that this deal benefits the US. I am not so sure about her wording concerning the second way in which the Fitz-Gibbon stance was misleading:The second fallacy is that this aims “to curb smuggling”. No one expects any single agreement will completely “stop the looting of archaeological sites and illegal trafficking”. Studies have shown that the modern trade in stolen works of art involves a complex economic network.Surely restricting "the import into this country of undocumented archaeological and ethnological materials" is precisely aimed at curbing the movement of smuggled cultural property. Only those with documentation of licit origins and export will be allowed into the US. She concludes:In the last decade, the global political landscape has shifted. Restrictions on the trade in cultural artefacts are increasingly commonplace, as countries seek better control over their cultural heritage and the economic and educational benefits that preserving that heritage can bring. Bilateral agreements like the one forged with China in 2009 and renewed early this year present challenges but also great opportunities. To leave the bargaining table and abandon these agreements, as those who oppose them prefer, is to forfeit the leverage the US can have in this important arena.
US dealers and collectors and their lobbyists seem intent on ignoring this global shift, and thus we find lobbyist Tompa pouncing on the words of the Classical sculpture expert suggesting (falsely) that she has "conceded that MOUs do not curb looting" and in the interest of the US trade, import restrictions on items without licit origins therefore should be abandoned. This is of course not what La Follette said. The point she made is that the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property exists to define "the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property", the word looting does not appear in any of its 26 articles. It is individuals in the US who read that interpretation into a document which has a specific purpose (see the title) - one that it looks like dealers and collectors of dugup antiquities find difficult to accept.
An exhibition, 'Afghanistan: Hidden Treasures from the National Museum, Kabul', opens at the Art Gallery of NSW on March 7. Many thought the treasures of Afghanistan were lost forever. They survived against the odds, thanks to the heroic efforts of a small band of museum staff.Through decades of horror - the Soviet intervention, civil war, the Taliban regime - Afghanistan's rich cultural and archaeological bounty, dating back millennia, was looted, bombed, shelled, burnt, shattered, blasted and scattered. Photographs show the Kabul museum on the outskirts of the city as a building pock-marked and crumbling. About 70 per cent of its collection was lost to looting. Then, in 2001, infamously, the Taliban dynamited the immense Buddhas of Bamiyan, carved into a cliff 230 kilometres north-west of the capital. The Buddhas could not be saved from the Taliban's quest to eliminate what they decreed was idolatrous imagery but the heroic efforts of museum staff to hide some treasures in the face of great personal risk deserve a Hollywood script. In 1989, as Soviet forces were withdrawing from Afghanistan, a delegation of officials and scholars watched as staff stashed boxes packed with a trove of the museum's treasures in a bank vault within the presidential palace in Kabul. Other artefacts were also cloistered at the Ministry of Information and Culture. A code of silence hovered over the hoard until 2004, two years after Hamid Karzai had been installed as interim president, when the vaults were opened and pieces that most experts had believed were long gone were revealed. They included what National Geographic magazine has described as the "crown jewels of Afghanistan", the legendary Bactrian Gold.The scattered collections of the museum then had to be reassembled. In addition to the material that was retrieved "from the vaults, from sifted rubble, from dusty storerooms" there was also stuff which surfaced "from dark corners of the international art market. About 9000 artefacts have been returned to the country.But it might be premature to celebrate the repatriation of the country's heritage. Despite the intervention of Western countries, including Australia, Afghanistan remains a country in turmoil and Hidden Treasures has been on the road since 2006. "It's just too dangerous to go home is the sad story," says Brand of the exhibition, which has visited institutions including the Musee Guimet in Paris, the British Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and, before its AGNSW outing, was shown in Melbourne and Brisbane. "That's why you've got this very unusual situation of highly important objects travelling for so long; normally the tours that go on for the longest are the ones that are least missed and this is the exact opposite."Source:
Stephanie Wood, 'Out of the rubble' Sydney Morning Herald February 15, 2014
Museum professional Ed Rodley, one of the followers of "Chasing Aphrodite" tweets has the right approach to the Art Newspaper article by US antiquities trade representative Kate FitzGibbon: "US import limits on Chinese antiquities creates an uneven playing field for collectors" (the usual old stuff from this milieu). Ed (Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts) wrote:Well, that was an irritating read. "China abuses it's heritage, so we should be able to also"? Wow...
Authorities in China to allow tourists to graffiti on a specific section of the wall, in the hope of reducing its spread ("Great Wall of China to establish graffiti area for tourists" Guardian 4 March 2014) Anyone who wants to scribble their name on a monument such as the Great Wall of China are invited to head to the Mutianyu section of the wallwhere visitors will be free to leave their mark in the hope of containing the scribbling, which, according to reports, is more likely to be in foreign languages (mostly English) than it is Chinese.Or alternatively they could just look, admire, reflect, respect and take photos.
I came across this on the BAJR Facebook page, asking for help. Unsuspectingly, I clicked on it, the first questions seemed to be leading in the right direction. The purpose of this research study, says Wendy Somerville-Woodiwis of Durham University is:to gather information as to how copper-alloy coins are treated by both conservators and finders, and to then test how the treatments affect the coins in the future. Your feedback allows this project to have relevant and up to date information.Question 1. "Are you: Conservator, Finds Liason Officer, Archaeologist, Numismatist, Other (please specify)". Ticked the box, but then, wait a second.... First of all an FLO has no business cleaning a finder's coins, and in what way is an FLO not an archaeologist? Then some rather disturbing questions about how "you" clean coins - "a copper-alloy coin which has been discovered in the ground". Then suddenly:
"4. How does metal detecting benefit your profession, can you give an example?" and "
5. If you are a archaeologist, do you use a (sic) metal detecting on site and how can it benefit the excavation?"
Jaw drops. What relevance to "how copper-alloy coins are treated by both conservators and finders" completely eludes me. This looks like some kind of preparation for PAS-inspired head-patting pro-collecting gobbldygook. I am afraid my reply to these questions in her survey probably sound rather short-tempered. I invited her to read my blog and comment.
It seems to me that a sick situation is developing in the UK where one cannot mention the words "metal detecting" without anxiously making every effort to show that you are not against them, and "they can be our friends". Let me introduce Wendy Somerville-Woodiwis to a few: John Howland, Andy Baines, James Warr, Dick Stout, "KPVW", "JC", "Holedigger Pete", Candice Jarman, Baz Thugwit, "Sheddy", "Digging for Gold", Clive Hallam, Graham Chetwynd, Norman Kennedy,and a whole host of equally interesting characters, all ambassadors for the hobby.
Here is a round-up of today's proverbs and fables - and for previous posts, check out the Bestiaria Latina Blog archives. If you have not downloaded a free PDF copy of Brevissima: 1001 Tiny Latin Poems, it's ready and waiting.
HODIE (Roman Calendar): ante diem septimum Idus Martias.
MYTHS and LEGENDS: The art image for today's legend shows Medea and Her Children; you can also see the legends for the current week listed together here.TODAY'S MOTTOES and PROVERBS:
TINY PROVERBS: Today's tiny proverb is: Perge audacter (English: Go forward boldly).
3-WORD MOTTOES: Today's 3-word verb-less motto is Pax optima rerum (English: Peace is the best of things).
ANIMAL PROVERBS: Today's animal proverb is Malo cani brevis tendatur copula (English: You should keep a bad dog on a short leash).
POLYDORUS: Today's proverb from Polydorus is: Cognosco oves meas, et cognoscunt me meae (English: I know my sheep, and my sheep know me).
PROPER NAME PROVERBS: Today's proper name proverb from Erasmus is Panidis suffragium (English: The judgment of Panides; from Adagia 3.1.32 - In the fabled contest between Homer and Hesiod, Panides, a Euboean king, was the foolish judge who would have awarded the victory to Hesiod).
GREEK PROVERBS: Today's proverb is Θυμοῦ λόγος ἰατρός (English: Speech is a remedy for anger).
BREVISSIMA: The distich poster for today is Non Cito Credendum. Click here for a full-sized view.
And here are today's proverbial LOLcats:
MILLE FABULAE: The fable from the Mille Fabulae et Una widget is Cervus et Amici Eius, a story of a deer whose friends prove his undoing.
FABULAE FACILES: The fable from the Fabulae Faciles widget is Ranae et Taurorum Proelia, in which the frogs observe the battle of the bulls with trepidation (this fable has a vocabulary list).
GreekLOLz - and Latin and English, too. Below is one of my GreekLOLz; for the individual Greek, Latin and English versions of the graphic, see the blog post: Αὐλὸν σάλπιγγι συγκρίνεις. Tibiam tubae comparas. You're comparing a flute to a trumpet.
Archaeoblogger Paul Barford apparently maintains that the CPO blog is tainted in some fashion because the blog's owner lobbies on behalf of the small businesses of the numismatic trade. But these lobbying activities have been fully disclosed on the CPO blog, CPO receives no payment for blogging, and CPO's blog posts have never been vetted by others before posting.
And what of Mr. Barford? Though he does not publicize it, he has now acknowledged, "I have indeed at various times been paid by UNESCO and other heritage organizations for quite a lot of hard work. It's I what I do."
So what's the difference? And what about more transparency as to what exactly Mr. Barford does for "UNESCO and other heritage organization" including their identity?
Maya Stela H, Copán.
Gender studies in ancient Maya culture and art often address the question of sexual identity.
Costume, which is gender distinctive among the modern Maya, has been a focus of attention and is usually assumed to be either masculine or feminine in archaeological contexts.
Masculine attire is generally represented as a hip cloth or loincloth, sometimes coupled with a short skirt. Feminine costume is typically a skirt worn to below the knee, sometimes accompanied by a long tunic-like huipil.
Occasionally in Maya art, the relationship between sexual identity and gender-marked costume is problematic when attempting to interpret the subject matter.
Stela H is an example of this. In an early account of the stela, Alfred P. Maudslay identified the skirted figure shown as a woman (1889-1902, 5:50). Subsequent work and the recovery of the inscriptions has determined that this monument actually represents Waxaklajuun Ub’aah K’awiil (18 Rabbit), the male ruler of Copán.
So why is he shown wearing the long skirt typical of women? One interpretation is that male rulers donned such “female” costumes for bloodletting ceremonies (Schele 1979). As argued by Andrea Stone (1988, 1991), such gender crossing is suggested in other aspects of Maya ceremonies.
Photo taken by Christine and John Fournier. Quoted segments from Traci Ardren’s Ancient Maya Women (2002).
This is a reminder to those in the United States and other parts of the world where clocks need to be changed early tomorrow. Kindly sleep an hour less, be a little grumpy as a result, and still get where you need to go on time. For more information, see Scot McKnight’s post about Daylight Saving Time. And some cartoons and images related to the topic follow below.
Colleagues over on "Chasing Aphrodite" have provided further information about the seized Roman sarcophagus. It now appears that the sarcophagus went from Nino Savoca to Becchina, sold to Becchina (August 1981), imported to Switzerland (August 1981), sold to George Ortiz (1981), offered to the Getty (1982), displayed at the Historical Museum in Bern (1982-83); jointly owned by Becchina and Ortiz (1986); subsequently acquired by the Japanese dealer Horiuchi.
This seizure is likely to bring renewed focus on the Miho Museum in Japan. It also raises concerns about the role of George Ortiz, the subject of detailed research work by Gill and Chippindale.
Faience amulet in form of Ibex
Egyptian, 18th dynasty, 1550 - 1295 BC
Source: Metropolitan Museum
Get your Open Access (free to read) archaeology fix:
Examination of the site of a long cist cemetery at Leuchars
The Curious History of the Talgai Skull
The development of a medieval street frontage: evidence from excavations at 80-86 High Street, Perth.
Learn more about Open Access and Archaeology at: http://bit.ly/YHuyFK
Multkor ugyebar felismertem, hogy elfelejtettem hirt adni a phrygokrol szolo kezikonyvrol, ezt potlom most. Csak az angol nyelvu tartalomjegyzeket masolom be, egyreszt mivel az olvasotabor valoszinuleg tuleli a torok cimek nelkul, masreszt mivel, mint az ekezetek hianyabol is kiderul, epp nem a legendas polcommal szemben ulok.Sivas, Hakan - Taciser Tüfekçi Sivas (eds.): Frigler. Midas'ın Ülkesinde, Anıtların Gölgesinde / Phrygians. In the Land of Midas, in the Shadow of MonumentsS. Berndt-Ersöz, Phrygian Kingdom: Origins, History and Political DevelopmentK. Sams, King MidasK. Sams, Gordion, the capital city of the Phrygians and its buildingsA. Gürsan Salzmann, Gordion: Socio-economical structure in the light of ethnoarchaeological dataT. Tüfekçi Sivas, Phrygian valleys and sacred Yazilikaya-Midas CityG. Summers, F. Summers, Kerkenes DağG. Tsetskhladze, Phrygian PessinusL.E. Roller, Phrygian religion and cult practiceC. Brixhe, Phrygian language (through prehistory and history)K. Sams, Phrygian tumuliH. Sivas, Phrygian rock-cut tombsR.E. Kortanoğlu, Phrygian influences on the Hellenistic and Roman rock-cut tombs of the Phrygian highlandsM. Vassileva, Phrygian bronzeworkingE. Simpson, Gordion Furniture and wooden artifactsM. Ballard, B. Burke, E. Simpson, Gordion textilesA.B. Alaner, A Phrygian musical instrument (double-pipe) and the Phrygian modeS a link.
Athar alrafedain آثار الرافدين
ISSN: 2304-103ءScientific journal looking at the effects of Iraq and the Arab world issued by the Faculty of Archaeology University of Mosul مجلة علمية محكمة تبحث في آثار العراق والوطن العربي تصدرها كلية الآثار جامعة الموصلTable of content: 2013 volume:2 issue:1
ArticleTable of content: 2012 volume:1 issue:1
Granodiorite figure of Sekhmet
Sekhmet was the goddess of destruction, she could control the demons that spread deceases throughout Egypt in the summer time. When pacified however, she could keep those demons away. This statue is 1m92cm high and 85cm deep.
Egyptian, New Kingdom, 18th dynasty (1485 - 1425 BC)
Found in the temple of Mut in Karnak.
Source: British Museum
Pitcher with Applique of a Bacchant, about 50-75. Corning Museum of Glass. (via Pitcher with Applique of a Bacchant | Corning Museum of Glass)
It is a pleasure to announce that somebody calling himself "Detectorbloke" has started up a new blog theresponsibledetectorist.blogspot. This is great, at last we are getting some detectorists coming out into the open (but come on guys, why all the silly cloak and dagger? Let's have a real person talking not another sock puppet) and actually trying to articulate some ideas about responsible metal detecting. The recent controversies seem to be having some effect, and while you still have the poison dwarves doing their nasty business on blogs and forums (you know who you are), it's good to see the gradual emergence of an awareness that there is a need for and an interest in places where one can read and discuss the complex issues surrounding responsible artefact hunting without getting jumped on by the naysayers which has been the plague of the forums and discussion lists. The responsibility for the direction of discussion is in the hands of the blog owner. Steve Broom is still going strong, while Andy Baines has fallen by the wayside, and obviously decided to produce another "Stout Standards' (sic). It's good then to see another step in to fill the gap. Welcome.
*Click here to see a slideshow of remarkable women throughout history featuring music by the 12th century female composer Hildegard von Bingen.
Steve Caruso shared the above, in which he combined two images he found online, each trying to suggest that their worldview is affirming of human beings and gives meaning, while the other supposedly does the opposite.
I think he is right that the very act of pretending that only one’s own worldview is meaningful, and that any opposing view by definition dehumanizes, engages in the very damaging of others that each side claims the other’s worldview causes.
In other words, on the one hand, neither religion or science can be said to damage people by definition. And on the other hand, the act of insisting that people whose beliefs are different than your own are evil or twisted clearly does cause such damage, in at least some instances.
Click through to see the image full size.
In case you missed our previous installments:
- The “Apollo” of Gaza ~ Part I: Fishy Tales and Timelines
- The “Apollo” of Gaza ~ Part Ia: Fishy Tales and Timelines
- The “Apollo” of Gaza ~ Part Ib: Implications of the Arabic Press Coverage
In our previous installment(s) on the so-called “Apollo” of Gaza, we primarily questioned the apparently ever-developing story of the find as told by the fisherman of many names as reported by various news outlets. Now it is time to look at the statue itself and see if it’s possible, from the information we have been given, to discern whether this thing is a genuine antiquity or a fake.
At the outset, though, we should deal with another question related to provenance, specifically whether it was actually found in the sea or not. Despite the engaging story told by the fisherman, opinions on this seem to be divided. Our first opinion comes from the oft-quoted Jean-Michel de Tarragon of the French Biblical and Archaeological School of Jerusalem, who seems to be one of the few academics consulted on the issue by the press:
The apparently pristine condition of the god suggested it was uncovered on land and not in the sea, he said, speculating that the true location of where it was unearthed was not revealed to avoid arguments over ownership.
“This wasn’t found on the seashore or in the sea … it is very clean. No, it was [found] inland and dry,” he said, adding that there were no signs of metal disfigurement or barnacles that one normally sees on items plucked from water.
An archaeologist from Gaza, Fadel al-Utol, agrees:
Young Gaza archeologist Fadel al-Utol said the statue, with its green patina, was unlikely to have come from beneath the waves.
“It is 90 percent intact and was probably found on land,” he told AFP. “If it had spent time underwater, the bronze would be blackened.”
“It’s more likely that the statue was found in an ancient temple in the Gaza area. We need to search and find out,” he said.
Utol said statues of such a size are rare, although a smaller example is held by the Louvre in Paris.
- via: Gaza pagan treasure holds promise for Islamic rulers (Art Daily)
The Tourism Ministry folks are totally buying into the found-in-the-sea story (which can be spun in numerous ways, depending on how conspiracy-minded one is):
“We are not denying that the statue was found in the sea — as a matter of fact, that is a very authentic and real story,” Al-Burch said.
Jawdat Khoudary, who was one of the first ‘knowledgeable’ folks to observe the statue provides an interesting argument for it being found in the sea:
There’s no doubt the statue came from the sea, Khoudary says. Sitting in the lobby of his hotel on a December evening, he wraps his portly frame in a wool robe and warms his neck with a black-and-white keffiyeh, the emblem of late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. In his left hand he works a silver coin purchased minutes earlier from two beachcombing treasure hunters. One side of the coin, encrusted with black sand, bears the outline of a face. Khoudary says it’s Alexander the Great, who conquered Gaza in 332 B.C. en route to taking Egypt.
Khoudary lays out his grim reasoning as the lights go off and on, a result of Gaza’s fuel shortage. “I know how they excavate in Gaza, it’s by shoveling,” he says, making the motions of a mechanical backhoe with his hand. In his collection’s catalog, an entry for clay wine jars even lists “bulldozer trenches” as the method of discovery. Clandestine hunters usually dig until they hit something, a process that’s speedy but damages the finds. In the case of the bronze, however, “It’s not damaged,” he says. “It’s 100 percent from the sea.”
- via: Hamas’s Ancient Bronze Statue, the Apollo of Gaza (Businessweek)
Not sure if we need to (cynically?) point out that the same logic could be used to suggest that the statue was never underground in the first place (i.e. It’s a fake).
The second ‘knowledgeable’ observer Bauzou disagreed, however (I’m still not sure of Bauzou’s first name):
Neither Humbert nor Bauzou believes Ghurab discovered the bronze underwater. “It does not come from the sea. It’s obvious,” Bauzou says. The giveaway, they say, is the lack of any sea encrustation or damage from hundreds of years underwater. Instead, they suspect the bronze came from a clandestine excavation somewhere on land. “This story has been fabricated to hide the real place where the statue was found so they can continue digging.”
- via: Hamas’s Ancient Bronze Statue, the Apollo of Gaza (Businessweek)
To its credit, the lengthy Businessweek article (referenced above, of course) does try to weigh the apparent evidence for it not being found in the sea somewhat objectively:
It’s possible the fisherman’s story is an elaborate hoax. It is true the Apollo isn’t encrusted with barnacles, but not all submerged bronzes get crusty. Photos of the 1996 Croatian find and the 1964 Getty bronze show thick layers of sea growth, but the Riace bronzes from 1972 appear to have come ashore with skin as smooth as that of the Gaza bronze. It might be no coincidence they were found under similar conditions: in shallow water, partly buried in sand, by a swimmer.
- via: Hamas’s Ancient Bronze Statue, the Apollo of Gaza (Businessweek)
With that in mind, it is useful to compare (as others have done, most notably Sam Hardy: the Apollo of Gaza: less innocent origins, equally problematic destinations) the find condition of those other statues which were plucked from the sea to get an idea of what we might expect to observe.
Here’s the Croatian Athlete at the time of discovery(I have another post mentioning this one in another context … stay tuned; Sam Hardy’s article above has a different photo):
… Here’s the Getty’s ‘Victorious Youth”
… Finally, one of the famous photos of one of the Riace Bronzes:
This is possibly an important detail … if the “Apollo” of Gaza did actually come from the sea and came out looking, patina-wise, like the Riace Bronzes, then the frequently-mentioned concerns about its current condition probably are even more concerning now (given that we haven’t had any news reports of any conservation help actually being given). The CNN coverage of February 15 mysteriously downplayed the deterioration:
A green spot — a sign of decay — has formed on the leg of the statue, which is exposed to the air.
A (single?) green spot? Anyone who has seen any of the photos has seen a statue that seems to be suffering from the early states of ‘bronze disease’ (or something similar), which can be the result of emerging from the sea and being exposed to air, or it can be the result of highly humid conditions (which does appear to be the case in Gaza … check the weather network for today’s humidity there). It’s difficult to tell whether there has been any change as seen from the two previously-mentioned photos (taken perhaps two weeks apart):
… but it seems noteworthy that the more recent one seems to come from a place which is likely air-conditioned, which would, in theory, slow down the progress of deterioration. Then again, the Businessweek article concluded thusly:
The Apollo is in a Hamas Interior Ministry office, somewhere in Gaza, being kept away from sources of humidity, he says. It is propped up in a corner.
- via: Hamas’s Ancient Bronze Statue, the Apollo of Gaza (Businessweek)
In regards to condition, we should also draw attention to another photo that was making the rounds from the ‘Smurf blanket’ phase:
What’s interesting in this photo is that the back of the statue (including the head)— which was, of course, in contact with the blanket/mattress and not really exposed to air — is largely free from any signs of the green patina. Does this give us an indication of the original condition? Or did moving it on and off the mattress do something to the patina (unlikely). If it does indicate the original condition, according to our timeline, all that green patina would have accumulated in less than a month and we can only hope that something more than ‘propping it up in a corner of an office’ is being done about it.
Outside of conservation issues, the statue itself raises a number of questions. A photo from the Palestinian Tourism folks which accompanied the Businessweek article (and appeared elsewhere) seems to touch on many of them:
A major item that has been bugging me from the outset is the reported weight of this thing: 450 kg/1000 pounds. Why does it weigh so much? Although it is roughly the same size (possibly a bit smaller), it is almost double what each of the Riace Bronzes weighs, and if it is the actual weight, it probably suggests a rather massive core, which certainly wouldn’t be in line with traditional statue construction methods of the time (as far as I’m aware).
The graphic marvels that the feet are intact, but what seems to be more interesting is that they are not only intact, but are attached to their original base. I’m sure someone can correct me on this, but finding bronzes of this size still attached to their base is pretty rare. I’d be very interested to know whether the base was cast with the feet or whether it was later attached.
Two other items on the graphic raise other questions. We are told that three fingers are missing — we know the fisherman had one, his “cousin” (or jeweller) had one too. How did the third go missing? And what happened to the thumb? We also wonder about the eye and are unsure whether it was always missing or was gouged out/fell out later (more on the surviving eye in a bit). In one of the news reports, it “sounds” like it was something that happened later, but that might be just one of those things that comes during the translation of an interview:
Ahmed Elburch, an official at the Hamas-run Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities in Gaza, says he last saw the statue in October. He was concerned about its condition, he says, as the colour appeared to be changing, and one of the eyes had been cut out.
That said, over the past few weeks a number of us (namely, Sam Hardy, Vernon Silver, Justin Walsh, and myself) have engaged in an on-again, off-again discussion of the statue on Twitter and much of what follows is the result of those discussions. Stylistically, as several, including Sam Hardy have noted the head of the statue seems to have great affinities with a head from Herculaneum, which includes the very interesting ‘dreadlocks’ hair treatment, although they seem a bit more ‘orderly’ along the brow (the photo, by the way, comes from an article by Carol Mattusch on early bronze statuary which is definitely an appropriate read for this: Changing Approaches to Classical Bronze Statuary)
The twisty curls also appear in another head from Herculaneum, albeit flatter and in a clearly non-Apolline context (as Vernon Silver reminded me). Here’s Ptolemy Apion in the Naples Museum:
In passing, we should note that the condition of the ‘free’ curls on the Gaza example is probably one of the best bits of evidence that the fisherman’s story of the recovery of the statue (by the ‘cartwheel technique’) is less-than-truthful. I have a very difficult time believing that those curls would have survived recovery according to his description.
As long as we’re looking at the head, I’m wondering if I’m the only one who finds the face of the statue to be somewhat strange. In some of the photos, depending on the angle, it does seem to be a reasonable ‘Greek’ visage, but in others (especially straight on) it does not and is certainly not the ‘idealizing’ sort of thing one might expect. The aforementioned ‘bronze disease’ also has almost ‘outlined’ a certain part of the face, which makes it look like it was somehow attached to a faceless head. I’m honestly not sure if that is the case or if that’s just an illusion caused by the deterioration, but clearly it would be an oddity. Indeed, when I first saw the outline, it struck me that this looked more like the face of a Roman cavalry mask than anything else. Here are the “headshots” from the BBC:
Also worth noting about the head is that it really isn’t unusual that a bronze might have lost its inlaid eyes (which were usually made from glass paste or other materials). What is interesting here, however, is the one eye that remains in the head is apparently blue and made from some sort of stone (maybe; not sure if a trained ‘eye’ determined that or not).
The pose of the statue is one which comes close to many statue styled an “Apollo” or “Kouros” or “Ephebe” but the closest analog seems to be the so-called ephebe of Selinunte, now in the Palermo Museum (tip of the pileus to Justin Walsh and Adrian Murdoch for helping me track this one down, there’s a huge version of the photo if you click on it):
The Ephebe from the ‘House of the Ephebe” in Pompeii also seems to have affinities both in terms of height and pose, sort of (and we might wonder if the Gaza statue carried something in its now largely broken left hand, but seems to be the product of a more-talented artist:
Another stylistic analog, but again the product of a better artist, would be the somewhat smaller (1.15 m) Piombino Kouros, originally from Etruria but now in the Louvre (this is a cast from Cambridge’s archive):
Perhaps related to this notion that the Gaza “Apollo” is the product of a less-talented artist is an observation which came up just last week: a photo which clearly shows a square hole on the back of one of the legs or upper arms (Sam Hardy has recently dealt with the confusion many of us had trying to figure out where this ‘hole’ is: Is it an arm? Is it a leg? What the hell is that hole?). Similar squares on other ancient bronzes usually indicate the site of a repair done in ancient times. Depending on where it is, however, it might also indicate where a statue attached to something else for stability purposes. If it is on the upper arm, it seems to be a patch. If it’s on a leg, it could be a patch or an attachment spot. Until some genuine conservationist/art historian gets an in-person look at the statue, I doubt we’ll know for sure.
I’m also not sure how much should/can be read into the above observations (I can’t really call them evidence) that all of the analogs for the Gaza “Apollo” seem to come from southern Italy/Sicily. As far as I’m aware, most of the bronzes which have survived to this point come from that part of the world. At the same time, Herculaneum for a long time was the site of numerous thefts, including a spectacular break in in the early 1990s, although no large scale statuary seems to have gone missing in that one (tip o’ the pileus to Dorothy King for help with that reference). Whatever the case, it’s obviously highly improbable that a statue might have been taken from southern Italy to Gaza to create a provenance, and then suddenly be subject to deterioration.
Which brings us to the bigger question: is the Gaza “Apollo” genuine or is it a clever fake? It’s interesting, I think, to note that the head from Herculaneum and the Piombino Kouros are considered in the category of ‘ancient fakes’ (I.e. Fakes/replicas made in antiquity to appeal to a contemporary market). Even so, I keep hemming and hawing on this issue and I still can’t come down firmly on one side or the other. The provenance strikes me (and most critical observers, it appears) as obviously manufactured. The weight, the face, and the survival of the base of the statue also combine to lead me to think there’s something very much amiss with this one. I’m still not too sure about the hair treatment either. Why Hamas (or whoever is in possession of it) is not giving scholars access to it to do some basic conservation and examination is puzzling and doesn’t lend any confidence to claims of authenticity. Despite all those considerations, it still seems possible that it is genuine and perhaps an archaizing sort of thing like the head from Herculaneum or possibly simply the product of a crappy artist. The whole situation is clearly being mishandled and I wouldn’t be surprised if we don’t hear anything more about this one for a year or two, if at all.
Meghan Paalz McGinnis
University of Louisville:Faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Art History, Master of Arts, May (2012)
Utilizing an interdisciplinary approach to a variety of material, textual, and literary evidence, the aim of this thesis is to shed light on the realities –rather than stereotypes- of an important aspect of late ancient women’s experience: the use of ritual power. Patterns of gender differentiation in late antique Egyptian magic are investigated and shown to be connected to the particular aims to which numinous powers were employed, aims which were in turn bound up with the social roles expected of each sex. The majority of this study consists of a series of case studies of different types of women’s rituals of power, which emphasize examples of significant trends in ritual iconography, praxis, and context, both those which were typical of late antique Egyptian magic as a whole, and those which were uniquely female in character. The fact that female practitioners came from a wide array of socio-economic, ethnic, and religious backgrounds is also addressed.
A girl worries that her lover’s eye might wander. A mother wants to ensure the health of her child in every way possible. A businesswoman wishes for success in her newest venture. A new bride hopes for a harmonious marriage. A female scholar works to compose her latest treatise. Though over a thousand years separate the lives of these late antique Egyptian women from today’s world, their concerns are hardly ones which would be unfamiliar to many of their contemporary counterparts. But whereas the twenty-first century woman (or man) may look to things such as the wonders of modern medicine, or the omnipresent–if not always helpful–vastness of advice, how-tos, and other kinds of information to be found a mere keystroke away online, for assistance, women (and men) in the late antique world often sought to solve problems by tapping into numinous forces.
Variants 10, Amsterdam/New York, 2013.
Éditeur : Rodopi
Collection : The European Society for Textual Scholarship
ISBN : 978-90-420-3632-1 ISSN: 1573-3084
This volume is the 10th issue of Variants. In keeping with the mission of the European Society for Textual Scholarship, the articles are richly interdisciplinary and transnational. They bring to bear a wide range of topics and disciplines on the field of textual scholarship: historical linguistics, digital scholarly editing, classical philology, Dutch, English, Finnish and Swedish Literature, publishing traditions in Japan, book history, cultural history and folklore. The questions that are explored — what texts are worth editing? what is the nature of the relationship between text, work, document and book? what is a critical digital edition? — all return to fundamental issues that have been at the heart of the editorial discipline for decades. With refreshing insight they assess the increasingly hybrid nature of the theoretical considerations and practical methodologies employed by textual scholars, while reasserting the relevance and need for producing scholarly editions, whether in print or digital, and continuing advanced research in bibliographical codes, textual transmissions, genetic dossiers, the fluidity of texts and other such subjects that connect textual scholarship with broader investigations into our nations' literary culture and written heritage.
Clay figurine of enemy
This clay figurine is a bound captive or enemy and was used in temple ritual to destroy the enemy. The spell written on this figurine is done in red because red was associated with destruction. After the ritual these objects would be destroyed.
Source: Rijksmuseum van Oudheden Leiden
ARCHAEOLOGY - Roman road in Izmir's ancient site Agora opens :A two-way 60-meter ancient Roman road, which was unearthed in the north of Izmir’s ancient site Agora, has been opened to visits
Bryant Wood made the case that Khirbet el-Maqatir is biblical Ai in a lecture he gave at the recent symposium held at Houston Baptist University.
Biblical Archaeology Review has posted online the documentation for this month’s cover story, “Archaeology Confirms 50 Real People in the Bible.” This is a valuable resource, and more easily accessible than the author’s monograph.
An alabaster statue of a New Kingdom princess has been discovered in excavations near Luxor. The 6-foot statue was once part of a 56-foot-tall statue that guarded the entrance to a temple.
“Iraq's southern Dhi Qar province is ‘a global museum of antiquities,’ dotted with hundreds of unexcavated ancient cities whose archeological treasures could rival those of the great Sumerian capital of Ur, experts say.”
BibleX points to an article on the time and cost of Paul’s missionary journeys.
Israel experienced a very bad dust storm earlier this week, resulting in the closure of a number of the country’s airports.
Mark Hoffman explains how to make a custom Bible map using Accordance as well as other options.
The ASOR Archaeology Weekly Roundup links to stories about Pompeii, the Apostle Philip, and more.
Luke Chandler invites you to join him on a tour of Israel. At $3,300, it is one of the most affordable trips I know of.
Wayne Stiles flew out to Israel yesterday and will be blogging about his trip daily. He also will be posting new pictures on his Instagram feed. I’m heading over as well, but I don’t expect to have much time to write on this blog while I am away.
HT: Jack Sasson
Spring Break calls for some classical mythology humor.
[First posted in AWOL 22 June 2011. Updated 8 March 2014]
HdtDep: Syntactic dependencies search engine in Herodotus' Book 1HdtDep is a search engine for a treebank consisting of the first book of Herodotus' Histories. The treebank is encoded in an XML file based on A. Godley's Loeb edition (1920), available under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License on the Perseus Project website. All typos have been corrected.
The Greek characters are encoded in the UTF-8 Unicode format. The XML files is structured in <chapter> and <sentence> node, which contain <word> nodes. All punctuation was removed. Since the UTF-8 format encodes graphemes with different diacritics as distinct glyphs, all grave accents have been turned into acutes (in order to improve the searchability). Enclisis accents have been removed. All elided vowels have been restored. Moreover, all crasis forms have been resolved into uncontracted words, in order to correctly represent their syntactic relationship.
The syntactic structure of the sentences has been described by applying an adapted version of Igor Mel'čuk's dependency theory (Mel'čuk 1988: Dependency Syntax: Theory and Practice, Albany; Mel'čuk 2009: 'Dependency in Natural Language', in A. Polguère & I. Mel'čuk, Dependency in Linguistic Description, Amsterdam - Philadelphia: 1-110; Vatri 2011: Syntactic dependencies in Classical Greek [submitted]). Each word is annotated with the element it depends on and its grammatical category/sub-category (see below). Nouns, adjectives and verbs also contain the Attic lexical entry under which they appear in LSJ. The syntactic relationship types, whose interpretation is highly theory-dependent, has not been encoded.
One of the most popular recent posts on this blog was “The people who lived at Angkor Wat,” and people seemed especially struck by the image of refugees at Angkor Wat in 1970. I had asked if anyone knew more about refugees staying at Angkor Wat during the war and I was glad to hear from a reader, Teddy, who told me about “Facing the Khmer Rouge: A Cambodian Journey” by Ronnie Yimsut.
In this memoir of the Khmer Rouge period, Ronnie Yimsut describes being told to go to Angkor Wat by Vietcong soldiers, who said there would be food and safety if his family sheltered there. Ronnie recounts that the Vietcong were sending many families to Angkor Wat, and when they arrived the road into the temple was crowded, so they crossed the moat.
It was sunset when Norane carried me into the outer walls of the Angkor Wat. We were both exhausted. We were hungry, but there was no sign of the promised stockpiles of food. The Khmer Rouge had tricked us. Oh, how I hated them. Would we ever get to go home? Where was home anyway? We couldn’t stay in our bullet-riddled house.
The communist guerrillas were very efficient and effective con men. They had massed us into the temple ruins to serve as human shields (p. 34).
Ronnie Yimsut describes spending 7 weeks starving in the Angkor Wat temple before he and his family left for the nearby village of Domdek.
Angkor Wat may have been an important place of refuge for people at many points during the past. A colleague of mine, David Brotherson, wrote his honor’s thesis on the possible re-use of Angkor Wat as a fortification during the post-Angkorian period.
I’m interested in hearing from more people with any thoughts on this topic or other memoirs that might cover Angkor and the Khmer Rouge period. Leave a comment below or feel free to contact me.
A correspondent drew my attention to some remarks made by Maarten Vermaseren on one of them. The title is Mithras: the fellow in the cap, by a certain Mrs Wynne-Tyson, back in 1958 (but reprinted since).
The title is a reference to a curious passage in St. Augustine, in his Tractatus in Joh. Evang. VII, 6. This reads, in the ANF translation, thus:
“And this is a great thing to see in the whole world, the lion vanquished by the blood of the Lamb: members of Christ delivered from the teeth of the lions, and joined to the body of Christ.
“Therefore some spirit or other contrived the counterfeit that His image should be bought for blood, because he knew that the human race was at some time to be redeemed by the precious blood.
“For evil spirits counterfeit certain shadows of honor to themselves, that they may deceive those who follow Christ. So much so, my brethren, that those who seduce by means of amulets, by incantations, by the devices of the enemy, mingle the name of Christ with their incantations: because they are not now able to seduce Christians, so as to give them poison they add some honey, that by means of the sweet the bitter may be concealed, and be drunk to ruin.
“So much so, that I know that the priest of that Pilleatus was sometimes in the habit of saying, ‘Pilleatus himself also is a Christian’. Why so, brethren, unless that they were not able otherwise to seduce Christians?”
The word “pilleatus” is of less than certain meaning – it means the “god wearing a mitre” or wearing a peaked cap. It could mean Mithras, but also Attis, and apparently a number of other gods accustomed to appear with a cap.
Mrs Wynne-Tyson has chosen to render “pilleatus” as “the fellow in the cap”, which is fair enough. But let us now see what professional Mithras scholar and archaeologist M. Vermaseren says, after himself referring to Mithras as “the fellow in the cap”. (I will split this footnote into sections for easier reading).
4. This is the dreadful title of a book by Mrs Wynne-Tyson published in 1972. The Times Literary Supplement said of this work : “The argument of this book, showing that the facts about Mithras reveal the basic pattern of Western civilisation and throw light into many of the darker comers of history, points disturbing conclusions for Christian orthodoxy”.
But reading the astonishing lines “To the Christian and others outside the Mithraic fold, Mithraism, with its bull-slaying God who was also identifiable as the Bull, in whose regenerative blood the Faithful bathed; with its animal masks of Lion and Bull, Horse, Eagle and Gryphon, and its eschatological teachings of metempsychosis, evidently seemed to be the worship of the Beast, even as Pure Christianity has always been the worship of the Perfect Man” etc., one would be tempted to think that Franz Cumont and his successors had all written in vain. I wonder what Stevie Smith in the Observer really meant when writing about this book “Most fascinating and apt to our times.”
Mithraism as the introduction to the anthroposophy of Rudolf Steiner is preached by Alfred Schütze, Mithras, Mysterien und Urchristentum, Stuttgart 1972(2). The petitio principii already is wrong.
The wildest opinions as well as unadulterated twaddle about the revealing excavations in the Mithraeum of Sa Prisca (M. J. Vermaseren – C. C. van Essen, The Excavations in the Mithraeum of the Church of Santa Prisca in Rome, Leiden 1965) can be found in the book by Father Geremia Sangiorgi O.S.A., S. Prisca e it suo Mitreo (Le Chiese di Roma illustrate 101), Roma 1968, which is now the official guide for visitors!
It becomes each year more necessary for scholars to waste their precious time in refuting the many pseudo-scholars = anti- scholars: read, for example, the exemplary review by Theodor Klauser in JAC 11/12, 1968/1969, 215-224 who rightly emphasizes:
“Wer die Wissenschaft wirklich fördern will, darf sich nicht damit begnügen, Einfälle und Lesefrüchte unkontrolliert zu einer verführerischen Synthese zu vereinigen und diese in gefälliger Form vorzutragen, die leiseste kritische Berührung bringt solche Konstruktionen zum Einsturz. Die bewährten Regeln der wissenschaftlichen Methode lassen sich nicht ungestraft ignorieren; auch der Begabteste kann langwierige Arbeitsprozesse, wenn sie nötig sind, nicht nach Belieben überspringen”.
A rough translation of Klauser’s words:
“Anyone who really wants to promote scholarship may not content themselves with uniting uncontrolled ideas and research into a seductive synthesis, written in an attractive form, for the slightest critical touch causes such constructs to collapse. The established rules of scholarly method cannot be ignored with impunity; even the most gifted may not skip over the necessarily lengthy process.”
I think perhaps those words sound more impressive in German!
The cartoon above hopefully clarifies why some of us think that the expression of gratitude for one's own experience is problematic, when it posits God's direct and deliberate involvement in arranging circumstances for one's own benefit, while ignoring the contrasting experience of others and failing to offer a theological account of what befalls them in the same way one does for oneself.
Is it not better to simply express gratitude, rather than voicing the view that God is showing favoritism towards you, and is less kind towards those around you, in a way that may exacerbate the pain which those who are suffering feel?
[First posted in AWOL 23 October 2009. Updated 8 March 2014]
Myrtia: Revista de Filología Clásica
Online ISSN: 1989-4619
Print ISSN: 0213-7674La revista Myrtia está editada por el Departamento de Filología Clásica de la Universidad de Murcia, a través del Servicio de Publicaciones de esta Universidad. Está constituida por dos secciones: Filología Latina y Filología Griega, en cada una de las cuales se publican aportaciones originales e inéditas, en forma de artículos, notas o reseñas, a los distintos dominios de la Filología Clásica.
El Comité de Redacción, con la colaboración de un amplio Consejo Asesor, formado por especialistas en los distintos campos de la Filología Clásica, considera el valor de cada uno de los originales entregados por los autores y decide sobre la conveniencia o no de su publicación (de lo que, en cada caso, informa al autor o autores), la sección en que se incluirá el artículo aceptado y la forma del mismo. Los volúmenes son facilitados gratuitamente a los autores así como, en régimen de intercambio científico, a los centros editores de publicaciones científicas del Estado y del extranjero que se avengan a ello, según criterios y mecanismos que establece el Servicio de Publicaciones, quien, asimismo, podrá comercializar la revista.
2008En homenaje a la Profesora Dª. Filomena Fortuny Previ
T&T Clark kindly sent me a review copy of Maurice Casey’s monumental opus Jesus of Nazareth: An Independent Historian’s Account of his Life and Teaching.Since Casey’s more recent book focused on mythicism builds heavily on the treatment of the details of the life of Jesus in this earlie volume from 2010, i thought I had better finish reading it and start blogging about it (even if not in that order).
The reason for taking so long is that Casey’s book goes into such extensive detail, interacting with important Jewish sources as well as the New Testament, and is not the sort of book it makes sense to skim. It is a book to be chewed and savored.
Casey’s description of himself as “independent” refers to the fact that he is not religious, but neither anti-religious. This is extremely important. Often you will find that those of us who have a background in some sort of conservative Christianity tend to be extremely skeptical, to prefer later dates to early ones, as we react against the errors of our previous assumptions and dogmas. Casey is able at times to make a case because of his lack of apologetic interests one way or the other that simply asks balanced historical questions, with no particular reason to either prefer or avoid an early date or a late one.
Casey notes the impact that antisemitism had on 20th century German scholarship on in the quest for the historical Jesus. Not only figures like Fiebig, but also Rudolph Bultmann, in his German context, were shaped by this. Casey writes (p.11): “The effect of their radical criticism was to ensure that out from under the Synoptic Gospels there could never crawl a Jewish man. If moreover we can become convinced that we do not ow anything much about the Jesus of history, the Christ of faith can continue unhindered.” Ironically, many modern atheists, including the mythicists among them, are unaware of not only the antisemitic roots but the overwhelmingly Christian concerns that motivated this excessive and unwarranted skepticism. Casey directly tackles the mythicism of Robert Price and Frank Zindler, before proceeding to mainstream work by scholars like Wright, Dunn, Meier, Chilton, Sanders, Vermes, and others.
Chapter 2 is devoted to reliable sources. Casey is of the view that the Gospel of Mark reflects in places the linguistic interference known to all who are at least bilingual. The significance of evidence for Aramaic material underlying Mark is surely overstated when Casey writes that “our oldest source is sometimes perfectly accurate…only one short step away from eyewitness testimony” (p.64). But it does mean at the very least that the Galilean Jesus of the Greek Gospels derives from Aramaic stories rooted in that region. And so the attempt of some mythicists to drive a wedge between Paul and the Gospels, with the latter as simply attempts to build on or at times undermine and transform the former, simply will not work. That may seem plausible to ideologically-driven laypeople outside of this scholarly field, but it cannot to those being attentive to what the sources actually say, and the clear evidence they provide regarding the linguistic, cultural, and religious setting that shaped them. And so, even if one may find Casey to be overstating the case, it is unambiguously clear from the evidence that he is closer to the truth of the matter than the mythicists are.
Casey looks at the evidence from Justin Martyr regarding the Gospel of Mark, noting that Justin mentions the word Boanerges as appearing in the “Memoirs of Peter” (Dial. 106). Since that word is an inaccurate transliteration of bene re’em into Greek letters, and “The possibility that two independent sources made almostidentical mistakes in the transliteration of these words is negligible” it thus is clear that Justin was indeed rferring to our Gospel of Mark (p.66). Casey then goes on to show why the deduction of early church fathers regarding the identity of this Mark ought to be viewed as mistaken, and that the inaccurate prediction regarding the temple which is attributed to Jesus means the work is earlier than 70 CE. Casey deduces from the state of the Gospel of Mark that it was probably a first draft, rather than a spfinished work intended for publication in its present form (pp.76-77). That it was written early and circulated widely, perhaps after its author died or was imprisoned, must be concluded to make sense of how a work in this unpolished state achieved canonical status even despite the production of works like the Gospel of Matthew.
In turning to the Q material, Casey here too finds Aramaic considerations crucial. The difference between Matt. 23:23-24 and Luke 11:42 over whether dill or rue was to be tithed reflects the difference of a single letter between two Aramaic words, and in the case of Luke, resulted in a plant that was not eaten becoming part of the statement (pp.82-83). Since Mark, however unpolished, was faithfully preserved and circulated, Casey deduces that the Q material must have been a much more “chaotic” collection of scraps and notes in Aramaic and in Greek, and not a gospel – much less one belonging to a “Q community (p.85). Luke too had access to one or more Aramaic sources, apparently not available to Mark or Matthew or Q, and he shows himself to be an excellent historian by ancient standards. We should not, therefore, dismiss something on the grounds that it only appears on Luke.
As you can hopefully see from this very brief summary of the first two chapters of Casey’s book, this is a work that looks carefully at evidence and has no qualms about questioning either ancient sources or modern assumptions and conclusions. The review will continue in a future post.
Systematic field survey data
I spent a bit of time explaining to the detectorist who asked a question about surface evidence what the problem, from an archaeological point of view was ('Focus on UK Metal Detecting: What's this all about?') Although he did not thank me, he had no further questions or observations. I assumed the job was done. Unfortunately it is a mistake to imagine that these people think the way the rest of us do. I think most of us if we do not understand something ask, and do not pretend we understoodd what was said, hoping nobody will notice we have not got a clue. The metal detectoriust goes straight ahead and shows he's not the foggiest notion of what those dots on a picture represent (it surely is not ALL that difficult is it?). The hapless Mr Baines, for whom I wrote what I did, is caught writing this:Dont you think we have our eyes open when walking looking for pottery shards and flints and any other non metallic items? Yes, improvements need to be made in areas but overall we do a great service to history.
Well, here's another picture which shows what "having our eyes open for sherds and flints and other non-metallic items" is going to look like in normal artefact hunter searches. Its the same site as in my original post, just searched by a different means and with a different purpose. Quite a difference in information value don't you think?
Results of random hoiking - not data
How can random hoiking, even with full and detailed reporting, in this manner be considered a valid way of "doing a great service to history (sic)"?
I think we'd all like to see the PAS provide some more discussion of this point, linked, as behoves an archaeological outreach organization, to the current literature on the investigation of surface sites.
The English Heritage policy document "Our Portable Past" would be a good starting point - at the time of writing, it is not even linked on the PAS website.
Not that I think many metal detectorists of the calibre of the hapless young blogger discussed above will get it, but the PAS is not there to 'outreach' exclusively to that milieu - far from it.
In general, what is generally referred to as "beach detecting" is not really one of the concerns of this blog, searching loose tide-borne deposits for modern coin and jewellery losses seems like a jolly good use of a metal detector, involving fresh air exercise, the thrill of the search and discovery, develops an ability to 'read' the conditions to pinpoint likely search areas, probably brings you into contact with all sorts of interesting people who stop and ask what you are doing, and so on. And all without doing any damage to the archaeological record. Great, go for it. So over on the new "The Responsible Detectorist blog ("The occasional ramblings of a part time metal detectorist in West Sussex, trying to promote responsible dectectoring") is an interesting post "What is responsible detecting on a beach?".
I'd add to Steve Broom's very pertinent points that at some points around the coast (including, I believe West Sussex) there are sensitive and stratified archaeological sites exposed on the surface of the foreshore, and below high tide-mark. These include sites that were originally on dry land and the land surface has sunk in relation to the sea level (the Thames estuary for example is in a huge syncline). They will include sites originally at high tide mark (salt pans and extraction workshops, my archaeological first love), and sites originally in the water now rising out (fish traps etc). Obviously simply hoiking material out of them for private collection is not a "responsible" way to treat such sites. However not all such sites encountered in artefact hunting will be known (or they may have changed form since last visited by an archaeological search team). So, it's worth recording and reporting anything that looks archaeological to the local archaeology services (assuming local government cuts have left one!). A good way to do this might be a series of (time-stamped) digital photos, linked to GPS co-ordintes, best to record that in a notebook, dont forget shots from a distance allowing the siting and setting to be recorded. I think I'd try bot to touch it, get expert advice before trying to alter its state. Perhaps try get the (probably otherwise very overworked and understaffed) archaeology team to go out to the site with you and show you what to look out for and how they want you to deal with it (if at all). It is also worth trying to verify the state of old sites known from archival records. Oh, and do please keep a lookout for briquetage. Brilliant stuff.
What are these guys doing? They're archaeologists and they are not digging? Eh? No metal detectors either?
This presumably is a sight few metal detectorists have ever seen, to judge by their evident lack of understanding about the value of surface evidence for archaeological survey. Thus we have Andy Baines over on his 'diary of a detectorist' blog writing rubbish like "David Knell and Paul Barford are missing the point" 6 March 2014). Actually its Baines who's not really grasped what we are talking about. So we see him protesting:
Prospekcja powierzchniowa na węgierskich polach. Fot. S. RzeźnikHow can we be slated for digging up finds that are in the plough soil and have been moved around for hundreds If not thousands of years. They are not in there (sic) context, they haven't been since farmers used the land. There is nothing that can be learnt except from the item itself.[...] there was no [context] to record as the find has been dragged out of it by the plough for years. How come them (sic) guys cannot see that ?well, perhaps it is not Mr Baines' fault, if you look on the PAS website for even some text or pictures to help explain it to him, there ain't none. Nowt. Why that is is a very good question... Now, funnily enough this is what tekkies have been saying for donkey's years, and their capacity for learning is such that you can tell them and tell them until you are blue in the face and they'll keep repeating the same old junk year in, year out. Perhaps that's why the PAS don't bother.
Anyhow, in the days when the PAS had a public forum, in deep PAS-prehistory, this problem came up. I was writing something on it at the time (in Polish for my students) and had a bibliography prepared. I posted it up on the Forum to demonstrate, if nothing else, that there was a huge literature - much of it produced by British archaeologists on precisely this aspect of to what degree (and when) ploughing disrupts existing patterns of surface artefacts. To cut a long story short the frequency with which surface archaeological survey (fieldwalking) has been used as a primary technique in landscape archaeology on almost all continents for the past several decades is proof enough that most archaeologists think the effects of ploughing are less significant than original patterns of deposition than Mr Baines. Of course my bibliography disappeared when the PAS closed their forum, if they'd asked, I'd have allowed them to put it on their website so their "partners' could see it. Well, I'll not make that mistake again.
So, instead of lots more words, here's two pictures for Mr Baines and his like-minded mates. Here's a load of dugup old stuff. How much of that would he be joining to his collection? There's a nice brooch, some rings, some lumps of crud, a few pieces of decorated pot. What about the knife? The iron strip fragment? Would he take those nice lumps of slag? All those little potsherds? Well, I think one can compare this array of typical artefacts with what gets recorded. Let's be fair here, let us look at the finds recorded not by somebody else (the PAS), but BY detectorists FOR detectorists on the UKDF Datebase. How representative of real assemblages is what the artefact hunters have picked out there for collection and recording? Have a good look and see for yourselves.
As can be seen, collectors are very selective in what they take home and put in their mahogany cabinets. Now, the importance of all the finds in my composite picture above is that they are all real archaeological finds from real archaeological sites right in the middle of Europe. Some of them have come right off the Ministry of Culture website. This is what archaeologists study. Those pieces of brown crud on the left, well, they are in fact very interesting when you know what the are and what their context is, but most UK detectorists discriminate out iron.
Now I am sure that Andy Baines is going to reply that he collects (or would) everything, even stuff like this and he has a shed full of it. That may be, I think he'd be the exception, which you can very easily check by looking on any detecting forum near you and glancing at the photos of Today's /yesterday's/ weekend's finds. They don't look like this, but show a very specific selection of object types. But the shedfull of crud brings us to the second picture:
It represents a ploughed site in two separate fields next to an area of pasture (where no surface finds can be found and plotted). There are three discrete scatters of finds in the ploughsoil relating to three separate archaeological events or processes on that spot in the past. They might be separate phases (first century AD Roman, 3rd century Roman), they may relate to zonation of activities (one scatter might be slag and fired clay, another roofing tile from collapsed wooden buildings). An archaeological field survey would grid-walk such a site and analyse the scatters - for example it looks like the orange spots could be restricted to a rectilinear area, and perhaps the scatter going down towards the bottom right corner is the upper fill of an enclosure ditch (check the cropmarks, geophys). The distribution suggests that the site continues into an adjacent field - which has heritage management implications. The establishment of the current field boundary seems likely to be later than all three spreads, possibly ploughed-out features are represented by the scatter, and so on.
What's going to happen when a metal detectorist gets on that field and starts looking for collectables and hoiking them out? Well, first of all his tool does not detect fired clay, tile and pottery, or bones or anything else like that which is also a component of those scatters. His main interest in the slag is going to be that its going to throw his signals out and he'll be cursing it by the end of the day if he cannot set the detector to discriminate it out, yet some of that slag is very characteristic of a specific smelting process. Not collecting those pieces loses a piece of information about what was happening on that site. If he fails to stoop to pick up the brown iron crud and take it home and stick it under his domestic radiographic unit, he's not going to find out he'd found a rare site with Roman chain mail on it. In fact they come from a ploughed-out cremation, another piece of information about what the site was used for (which he'll most likely not spot as the cremated bone is in small pieces and does not produce a bleep).
Now imagine that the spreads are more discrete, and in them are diagnostic metalwork finds, some buckles, strapends, tools - something which can suggest a date for the associated material, or perhaps say something about what was going on at this site (military equipment for example). That is precisely the stuff the metal detector is is going to make off with at once. Anything like that is precisely what a collector is looking for. Taking it away however, totally obliterates any chance that any subsequent examiner of the site can find that information. It may be argued that the find might be one of the one in five finds that is recorded by the PAS. It might be, but if it has a six-figure or even eight figure NGR, then its next to impossible to associate it years later on the basis of the PAS records with a specific context for example in the example given above.
The main point is that, depending on what kind of archaeological evidence these spots represent, in most cases it is not going to be possible to analyse these scatters 'live' in the field and plot them straight onto a map. It might be possible if they represent obvious categories, samian versus amphora sherds, Early Iron Age versus willow-pattern, but even so, the individual finds should be bagged up individually (or at least by grid) with the co-ordinate clearly associated with each piece or group of pieces of evidence.
How many metal detectorists' personal artefact collections contain the full range of crud (picture 1) from even one site collected according to its detailed distribution across the site (picture 2) and stored in a manner allowing the analysis - and re-analysis of the patterns? When we've answered that question , we can perhaps approach the answer to Mr Baines' plaintive question about what the difference in approach is between how an archaeologist sees the sites these people deplete in their search for collectables, and how they see them.
Individually bagged finds
UPDATE 7th March 2014:
See also here: 'Focus on UK Metal Detecting: Not Doing the Service to History People Say'.
Titre: The Prison Memoir of a Roman Christian Martyr: Perpetua
Lieu: Brown University / Providence (RI)
Catégorie: Séminaires, conférences
Heure: 17.30 h
Information signalée par Jacques Elfassi
The Prison Memoir of a Roman Christian Martyr: Perpetua's Story
A lecture given by Thomas Heffernan, University of Tennessee
Thursday, March 20, 2014 @ 5:30pm
RI Hall 108
The Passion of Perpetua and Felicity is one of the most remarkable early Christian documents to survive from the Principate. It purports to be an eyewitness account – written in the first person by an elite Roman matron – of a pogrom that took place in the city of Carthage during the reign of Septimius Severus. The narrative is suffused with rare insight into the protagonist's life providing an uncommon, and, it should be said, an historically irregular depiction of familial relationships, particularly between father and daughter. I will address some basic questions – the reliability of the ancient editor; does the narrative reflect an accurate depiction of the social and political situation at the time and can the narrative’s claim to be a first person account be sustained?
Source : Brwn University.
The movement of the Sun in the skies determined the way in which the great Nabatean monuments of Petra were erected
Aunque pienso que el día de la mujer hay que celebrarlo cada día no olvidando que es una lucha sin tregua a la que le queda mucho para la victoria, este año había pensado dedicar una entrada reivindicativa con fragmentos de textos griegos de esos que fueron escritos por misóginos, pero nos ayudan a fijarnos en lo que las mujeres de hoy tenemos en común con las de aquel tiempo.Como estoy en plena faena de corrección y evaluación y no me sobra el tiempo,( además de que habrían acabado apareciendo los textos que ya todos conocéis), he decidido publicar en su lugar este vídeo que habla de mujeres actuales educadas en otra gran cultura y cómo ven ellas lo que este mundo les ofrece.
Dedicado especialmente a todos esos que todavía nos consideran seres incapaces de pensar por nuestra cuenta y decidir sobre lo que nos conviene sin la tutela de un varón.
We can’t know when Man discovered fermentation and brewed the first beer but historians wonder if, besides bread, also beer has to be considered among the elements of the Neolithic Revolution of the 9.000 B.C. Dealing with beer, it’s possible to affirm that the first signs of brewing were in 7000 B.C. while the official beer recipe as well as the invention of the same word and the invention of the straw in order to drink it belong to the Sumerian Period (3000-2400 B.C.).Also Platone wrote in his works that a wise man invented the beer!
ANOTHER BLOG SERIES BY LAWRENCE H. SCHIFFMAN: Eruv and Sectarianism in Ancient Judaism (8 posts).The purpose of the presentation that follows is to argue that the Qumran sectarians, usually identified as the Essenes described by Josephus and other Greek-writing authors, prohibited carrying from domain to domain on the Sabbath, basing themselves on certain biblical passages, and that these ancient Jewish sectarians did not have an institution such as the eruv to mitigate the difficulties caused by this prohibition. ...
Review of Voula Tsouna, Philodemus, On Property Management. Writings from the Greco-Roman world, 33. Atlanta: 2012. Pp. xlv, 125. $24.95 (pb). ISBN 9781589836679.
Review of Dee L. Clayman, Berenice II and the Golden Age of Ptolemaic Egypt. Women in antiquity. Oxford; New York: 2014. Pp. xii, 270. $27.95 (pb). ISBN 9780195370898.
Review of Véronique Krings, François Pugnière, Nîmes et ses Antiquités: un passé présent XVIe-XIXe siècle. Scripta antiqua, 53. Bordeaux: 2013. Pp. 335. €30.00. ISBN 9782356130822.
As some of you may remember, the husband and I have the habit of giving up alcohol for Lent (here is last year's Lenten bulletin). I caught this from my much missed old editor, Peter Carson (I've linked you to Rodric Braithwaite's wonderful obituary), and this is only the second Lent I have faced without him.
There isn't anything religious in this abstinence for us. It is proof that we can do it, a chance to give the livers a break, and generally an exercise in latter day "moral improvement".
Each year, there is a rather dispiriting round of attempts to find a nice soft drink (is it to be a ginger beer year or a tomato juice one?), and a series of reflections about what our links with the fermented grape (for apart from some signature cocktails, wine is our tipple of choice) actually depend on. It is I have to say, as I have observed before, something of a relief to discover that a desire for a drink is almost overwhelming at 6.30/7.00pm, but has pretty much disappeared by 9.00pm (so this is SOCIAL addiction, right?).
The other question is what exceptions we are to be allowed. On my understanding, the observant Catholic would have a free alcohol pass every Sunday, so reducing the rather more than 40 days between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday. Do do we get some days off too?
In the past, I have taken the line that the Lenten rules don't apply abroad, or -- to be more precise -- dont apply airside at an airport and beyond (have never thought that a flight to Los Angeles without a single drink would do me, or my aeroplane neighbours, any good at all). Some years this has resulted in quite a few days off, other years none at all.
So this year, our -- admittedly self-obsessed -- family negotiations have concentrated on getting this sorted in advance. If we have the Catholic allowance of six days, then which are they to be? Well, I think I will be the other side of the Channel for 3 days (so that's the "abroad allowance"). But then maybe there could be a tiny "party allowance"? Perhaps 2 days, which would still keep us within the target six. There's a great book launch coming up, and an Oxford "feast" for me (now given an asterisk in the diary).
But, oh dear, we also had an invitation to a rather good bash last Thursday. It was very tempting to make it the sixth day off. But in the end, we both decided that you couldnt give yourself a free pass just two days in. So fruit juice it had to be -- though, blimey, parties where everyone else is getting nicely mellow and you are stone cold sober, can be hard work. (How on earth do people who regularly dont drink manage? That's the other learning experience of a dry Lent -- makes one realise how silly one is when you've had one or two).
Anyway, at the bash, I bumped into one of my fellow strandees in Delhi, and explained -- to his slight amazement at catching sight of me with a tumbler and a straw -- that I was off the booze for Lent. And I went through the whole litany of how it wasnt for religious reasons, but just to make my self feel better etc. And he elegantly turned on me, to point of that this was only, then, an exercise in self satisfaction and moral arrogance, and that I should have a glass of wine immediately.
I didn't (think of the liver, Beard), but I fear he was right.
De Onderzoekseenheid Archeologie van de KU Leuven organiseert op dinsdag 11 maart het 3de ‘Leuven Archaeological Research Seminar’ (LARS) van dit academiejaar. Simon Holdaway (University of Auckland) zal er een lezing geven met als titel ‘The Fayum Depression from 10 000 to 6000 BP. New Results and Analysis of Egyptian, Epi-Paleolithic and Neolithic Deposits’. De presentatie zal ingeleid worden door Veerle Linseele (KU Leuven en RBINS) die resultaten zal brengen van een archeozoölogische studie van de Fayum tijdens dezelfde periode.
De noordelijke kust van de Fayum-depressie is bekend voor zijn uitgebreid Epipaleolithisch en Neolithisch archeologisch bestand. In een nieuw veldwerkproject werden oppervlaktedeposits onderzocht langs de rand van een aantal bassins van oude meren in de noordelijke Fayum-depressie. Resultaten van dit project werden gebruikt om de distributie en datering van de deposits te onderzoeken. Dankzij de intensieve survey krijgen we een beter begrip van de relatie tussen de locatie van menselijke occupatie en het fluctuerende niveau van de meren in deze regio. De analyse van lithische artefacten helpt duidelijkheid te scheppen in de relatie tussen de Epipaleolithische en Neolithische occupatie. Een intensief dateringsprogramma, gebaseerd op materiaal van opgegraven haarden, geeft een duidelijker beeld van de chronologie van de occupatie in de Fayum. Deze resultaten hebben implicaties voor onze kijk op het vroege Egyptische Neolithicum.
Praktisch: de lezing vindt plaats op dinsdag 11 maart om 16u in lokaal 02.28 van het Monseigneur Sencie Instituut (Erasmusplein, Leuven).
The description of a new skull from the Dmanisi site (Republic of Georgia) concludes that the site hosted not one but two Homo species, one living around 1.8 million years...
Results obtained from analysing stable isotope ratios in the bone collagen of 49 adults from Efate Island suggest that its early Lapita settlers did not rely on growing crops
Spartan Greaves, 7th-5th Century BC
A finely made, anatomically sculpted pair of greaves covering the knee, shin and calf; slightly everted rim at the ankle and thickened edge at the calf; beaten from sheet bronze.
Similar in design to the greaves marked with the name ‘Denda’ in the Staatliche Antikensammlungen, Munich. These came from a Greek workshop in southern Italy, and were found with a Corinthian helmet dated to circa 500 BC. Greaves were part of the standard equipment of the hoplite infantry formations. There was no need for attachment straps with this style of armour, which relied on the springiness of the bronze to close around the leg.
I am not going to write to her, because the Kent FLO will tell us that she only discusses "this Treasure case" with metal detectorists and I'm not one. Anyhow, two problems have arisen with regard to the anonymous landowner's claim to a share of the Treasure award for the "Near Maidstone" find, which I think if the PAS were doing its job of outreach to the people concerned (including finders and landowners the country over, as well as the rest of us) should be addressing. The Coroner too. They arise on the basis of the same laws that allow artefact hunting.
The first option is that the Landowner has his reward share cut, the second is that he or she should get the entire reward paid, with none going to the finder.
It's up to the Coroner to establish by inquest the actual circumstances of this find. From a purely legal point of view, two questions arise here. Was the decision to remove the artefacts summarily and before any archaeological examination take place taken with the landowner's explicit agreement? At the time of finding of the objects, was there an explicit agreement between the landowner and the finder Greg Sweetman?
To take the first question, as we have discussed in the comments to an earlier post (here) is that a Treasure award is entirely discretionary, there is no legal obligation on anyone to be given one. The Code of Practice to the Treasure Act (para 79[viii]) stipulates that no rewards at all or abated rewards may be received under the following circumstances:(viii) where significant damage has been done deliberately or recklessly either to the actual object, or to a surrounding monument or to the archaeological deposits making up the contexts which may explain the circumstances in which the object became buried or concealed, when the object was removed from the place where it was found;The landowner is the owner of the archaeological finds on his property in all cases, unless a Treasure inquest (as yet still to be held) decides otherwise. As such, it is the landowner's responsibility to ensure that the archaeological finds on his property are treated as laid own not only by the law (Treasure Act 1996) but in accordance with the Code of Practice which accompanies it. While on his land as holders of a search permission, the metal detectorists are acting merely as his agent and under his supervision. If the landowner has failed to exercise that responsibility (or if he did and gave the nod - "hoik it out lads!") then he should ideally forfeit part or all of that part of the reward which is paid for the obtaining of knowledge of the Treasure. If the finders hoiked out the finds without his explicit permission and both sides lose out, the landowner can in theory sue the club to recover his own potential losses.
The second issue arrives from the information supplied by someone who claims to have inside knowledge, James Warr, who has stated provocatively that:Mr Sweetman wasn't a member of that club that day. He was invited in to fill numbers. He didn't know anyone in the group, so therefore couldn't trust anyone at this stage.If that is the case, it is the duty of the Coroner to investigate whether Mr Sweetman figures on the original search agreement signed between the Medway History Finders club and the landowner before the event. Does it contain permission for "members of the club" to search and dig up finds, or "members of the club and assorted individuals who might wander along on the day"? If the Coroner's inquest determines that Mr Sweetman was on the land on Sunday 16th February 2014 with his metal detector and spade without at the time being covered by a properly-formulated permission, then on purely legal grounds, he cannot be eligible for a share of the Treasure reward and the whole arguably should then go (at the discretion of the Secretary of State) to the landowner.
The people (PAS?) who received these finds from Mr Sweetman to pass them on to "London" for cleaning would necessarily have seen a copy of the documentation establishing Mr Sweetman's title to the objects (this would be standard procedure in order to avoid heritage professionals running the risk of handling material of legally unclear status), so what does it say? If there were any question, then professional ethics, if nothing else requires them to report that to the Coroner's inquest.
It will be interesting to see how this case develops, and with the Medway detectorists and their supporters currently attacking everyone left right and centre, it seems likely that I am not the only one who will be watching the further development of this case especially carefully.
Vignette: Landowners, by Gainsborough
Novice blogger, UK metal detectorist James Warr (Mar 4 2014) now switches his attention to "yet another archeologist weighing in on the Saxon hoard discussion", this time his main target is " Mike Trevarthen. Yet again, another ill-informed, rude archeologist." Since obviously (to him) this Mike is the same person as Ciorstaidh ("Kirsty"):he is a FLO (a finds liaison officer) someone who is supposed to be reaching out, and educating metal detectorists. Let me ask you this: Why would anyone want to communicate with this man, considering his opinion? Again, these people are doing more harm to the preservation of our heritage than good.These people? FLOs? Actually why would anyone want to listen to the immature and totally uninformed rantings of yet another UK metal detectorist trying to defend the indefensible by attempting to deflect attention from the issues? (This is an attempted 'two-wrongs make a right' pseudojustification). I assume Mr Warr would adopt the position that the all-smiles-Kent-FLO is far better at "communicating with" artefact hunters who've just trashed an Anglo-Saxon feature on a known site. She's one archaeologist who I think we can be sure will not figure in the anti-archaeological nastiness of Warr's "TonyRobinsonsPants" website.
There is one potentially significant snippet of information to emerge from this, Mr Sweetman may not have been a member of the "Medway History Finders" club at the time he made the discovery. This should come up at the Treasure inquest as it may mean that not only was he not covered by the group's insurance policy, but more importantly it calls into question whether at the time of the search, he was legally empowered to be on the site and receive a Treasure award on the basis of the agreement with the landowner (does the original document refer to club members, or explicitly state the agreement is with club members plus assorted others, including random people invited to 'make up numbers' who are not actually club members)?What Mike doesn't understand is that Mr Sweetman wasn't a member of that club that day. He was invited in to fill numbers. He didn't know anyone in the group, so therefore couldn't trust anyone at this stage.and does he now? If he is not covered by the agreement with the landowner, the latter could be deemed by the Secretary of State to be entitled to the entire reward, without having to share it with a finder who was on the land without his explicit permission.
As for the rhetorical question what Mr Trevarthen would have done, I think, if he bothered to read what this Warr guy wrote about him, Mr Trevarthen (who is NOT an FLO) would say that - like all of us - he would not have hurriedly hoiked the grave goods from a raggedy hole with no recording, but would have arranged to secure the site so it could subsequently be properly investigated. Archaeology is not about hoiking finds, but primarily generating documentation about their context. Not hoiking is also what the two relevant Codes of Practice expect of artefact hunters finding a significant assemblage to do. Why they did not is anybody's guess, but attempts by Mr Warr to distract attention away from that "minor detail" by his aggressive stance and attacks on heritage professionals fall rather flat. But then, Britain's metal detectorists never were very good at any kind of rational discussion.
Vignette: UK detectorists rarely use reasoned argument and discussion to make their point.
The Iberian Biche of Balazote, from Balazote (Albacete, Spain). Dates to the 4th-5th centuries B.C.E.
This sculpture represents an androcephalic bull (a mythical animal with the body of a bull and a human head). It formed part of a funerary monument in which it performed the function of guardian and protector.
The head is sculptured from a different block to that used for the body. The mouth is small, the eyes large, there are the remains of horns (which have not been preserved), and below them the ears. The hair is indicated by tufts using a straight incision. In terms of iconography it is identified with the representation of Achelous, a Greek river god.
Combined with its features and general style this means it can be considered a work of Greek influence created on an underlying oriental base.These doe figures consisting of multiple incised strokes engraved on shoulder blades have only been found in a specific region along the northern coast of Spain and may be interpreted as symbols identifying a territorial group.
Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) and Congressman Steven Israel (D-NY) have introduced a resolution, HR 505, recommending that the US renegotiate the return of the Iraqi Jewish Archive so that the rights of the Iraqi Jewish community in exile are protected. The resolution mirrors an earlier one that passed by unanimous consent in the Senate. Will the State Department and its Cultural Heritage take heed of these resolutions or will they be ignored? And, if so, will Congress take additional action to stop the repatriation? And what of the ardent repatriationists in the archaeological community? Will they actively oppose the resolution and what it stands for?
The short answer to the question in the title of this post is almost certainly “no.” But it still seemed worth sharing the news article that came to my attention, claiming that an archaeologist has found the tomb of Judas, and in it, a pipe with traces of cannabis resin.
I suspect that this may be an article someone was saving for April 1st but accidentally published too soon…
CPO has already reported that a ban on the trade in ivory meant to help protect elephants from slaughter also threatens to make antiques made from that material worthless. Now in response, two prominent trade groups representing the interests of antiques dealers have proposed the creation of an art advisory panel to help ensure that the legitimate trade in antique ivory objects can continue. Antique ivory objects can be of considerable artistic and historical value. Shouldn't they be saved too?
QUINCY, WASHINGTON—When the water level of the reservoir behind the Wanapum Dam on the Columbia River had been drawn down 26 feet earlier this week, human bones were exposed along the shoreline. Grant County Coroner Craig Morrison told The Spokesman Review that he thought the bones were “hundreds, if not thousands,” of years old because of the wear pattern on the teeth. The skeletal are being guarded at the site until someone from the Washington’s Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation can pick them up.
BRECON BEACONS, WALES—While walking in the Brecon Beacons, geologist Alan Bowring spotted prehistoric rock art on a 4-foot, 9-inch long stone lying on the ground. The stone, decorated with 12 cup marks joined by connecting lines, may have stood upright during the Bronze Age as a way marker for farming communities. “We might have been able to predict a discovery of this kind considering the large amount of prehistoric ritual sites in the Brecon Beacons but this is the first evidence of prehistoric rock art to be ever recorded [in the Beacons],” commented George Nash of Bristol University to BBC News.
[First posted in AWOL 23 October 2009. Updated 7 March 2014]
Hugoye: Journal of Syriac Studies
ISSN: 1097-3702Hugoye: Journal of Syriac Studies is an electronic journal dedicated to the study of the Syriac tradition, published semi-annually (in January and July) by Beth Mardutho. Published since 1998, Hugoye seeks to offer the best scholarship available in the field of Syriac studies.The word Hugoye, the plural form of Hugoyo, derives from the root hg' meaning 'to think, meditate, study'. Hugoyo itself means 'study, meditation'. In modern times, the term has been applied for academic studies; hence, Hugoye Suryoye translates as 'Syriac Studies'.
Faience statuette of goddes Taweret
This goddess in a strong protective deity, who protects women, children and the household. She is a pregnant hippopotamus with lions paws and tail and human breasts.
Egyptian, Hellenistic Period, 330 - 30 BC.
Source: Metropolitan Museum
If you missed anything from the ASOR facebook or twitter pages this week, don’t worry. We’ve rounded up some of this week’s archaeology news into one convenient post. If we missed any major archaeological stories from this week, feel free to let us know in the comment section!
- “The Bible’s Prehistory, Purpose, and Political Future” – A free course by Jacob Wright of Emory University.
- Traces of a Civil War era military fortress found beneath Alcatraz.
- Italy Investigating New Collapses in Ancient Pompeii
- Tomb of Apostle Philip Found
- Ask an Archaeologist: Semitic Museum at Harvard with Adam Aja
- Ancient Egyptian Soldier’s Letter Home Deciphered
- Excavations at an Anglo Norman castle in Ireland are extended after the discovery of a secret tunnel
All content provided on this blog is for informational purposes only. The American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this blog or found by following any link on this blog. ASOR will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information. ASOR will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information. The opinions expressed by Bloggers and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of ASOR or any employee thereof.
PARIS, FRANCE—Zooarchaeologist Hervé Monchot of the Université-Paris Sorbonne identified 145 lizard bones, most likely from the spiny-tailed lizard Uromastyx aegyptia, in a bone dump at the mosque complex at al-Yamâma in the Saudi Arabian desert. This is the first archaeological evidence of this protein source in the Arabian diet, even though the consumption of lizards is mentioned in the hadiths of the Prophet Muhammad and in an eleventh-century travel log. “It is necessary to distinguish the Bedouin, who ate and [still] eat lizard when traveling in the desert because it is a source of easy-to-find protein, and urban populations who do not eat lizard,” Monchot told Live Science.
GIZA3DGiza 3D is a complex project, involving collaboration, and man- agement of a huge wealth of data in an attractive, realistic and user-friendly presentation. It is a perfect demonstration of the power of 3D in the service of specialized research on the one hand, and the sharing of knowledge with all types of people on the other.
For the first time, the latest and most exhaustive information available on the Giza Necropolis will be made available to ev- eryone through a realistic experience that can satisfy mere cu- riosity or encourage more demanding research inquiries.
Who knows, we may even find the next George Reisner among the visitors to Giza 3D...
This morning, Fox News featured ISAW Exhibitions Director Jennifer Chi discussing the history of the Crown with Building Facade Decoration and Vultures, included in ISAW's current exhibition Masters of Fire: Copper Age Art from Israel. In the video, Chi explains that the object signifies the presence of an elite group in the society that required a statement of their position. Archaeologists have identified this 6,000 year old crown as the oldest known in the world.
Titre: Medical Translators at Work
Lieu: Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin / Berlin
Catégorie: Colloques, journées d'études
Date: 20.03.2014 - 21.03.2014
Heure: 19.00 h - 21.00 h
Information signalée par Marie-Karine Lhommé
Medical Translators at Work
Syriac, Arabic, Hebrew and Latin Translations in Dialogue
Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Hauptgebäude, Unter den Linden 6, room 3059
Translations played a central role in the transmission, circulation and transformation of medical knowledge throughout the centuries. Greek medical works penetrated into different cultural milieus by communicating ideas, theories and vocabulary that needed to be reinterpreted and reconfigured in languages different from the original ones. Being translated into Latin, Syriac, Arabic or Hebrew, Greek and Roman medicine continued to be transmitted up to the Renaissance period across various cultures and religious and political boundaries.
This conference seeks to bring together scholars from the fields of classics, oriental studies and history of medicine. The aim is to promote an innovative interdisciplinary dialogue on medical translations, addressing one (or more) of the following topics:
Translation technique and skills of the translators. How were original texts approached by translators? How closely or freely were they rendered into another language? What sorts of difficulties (linguistic, conceptual, or other) surrounded the translation process? How were termini technici dealt with?
Translation tools. How widely did sources (manuscripts, editions) circulate and how widely were they available across different historical periods? What kinds of translation aids (such as dictionaries, lexica, and other) did translators have at their disposal? And how were libraries containing such works organised?
Translations in their new contexts. How did translations circulate and cross geographical boundaries? To what extent and in what ways did they inspire new medical works and commentaries?
Translation in its social, historical and political context. What was the role of institutions in production and circulation of translations? To what extent did patrons influence the work of translators? What was the translators' professional status, and intended audience? Did they work in a private or in an institutional environment?
Registration and contact
The workshop is free to attend, but registration is required by March 16, 2014 – please email Dr Matteo Martelli (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For any inquiries please contact the organisers:
Dr Matteo Martelli (email@example.com)
Dr Oliver Overwien (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Dr Christina Savino (email@example.com)
The workshop is funded by the Research group ‘Medicine of the Mind, Philosophy of the Body' (funded by the Alexander-von-Humboldt-Stiftung).
(click here to download a pdf version)
Thursday, 20 March, 2014
9.00-9.30 Welcome and opening
9.30-13.00 Morning session: Syriac and Arabic translations
9.30-10.15 Siam Bhayro (University of Exeter):
Between translators and practitioners: contrasting fortunes in the transmission of Galenic medicine in Syriac
10.15-11.00 Grigory Kessel (Universität Marburg):
“Sergius ar-Ra'sῑ has translated it into Syriac, but poorly.” Comparison of Ḥunayn b. Isḥāq's and Sergius of Rēš ‘Aynā's translation technique
11.00-11.30 Coffee break
11.30-12.15 Robert Hawley (CNRS-Paris; UMR 8167, “Orient et Méditerranée”):
Transliteration versus translation of Greek plant names in the Syriac medical writings of Sergius of Reš ʿAynā
12.15-13.00 Veronique Boudon-Millot (Université Paris-Sorbonne):
La réception arabe des traités pharmacologiques de Galien
15.00-17.15 Afternoon session: Arabic translations
15.00-15.45 Gotthard Strohmaier (Freie Universität Berlin):
Die gesellschaftliche Einbettung der griechisch-arabischen Übersetzungen in Bagdad
15.45-16.30 Uwe Vagelpohl (University of Warwick):
Forms and functions of amplification in medical translations. Examples from the Arabic version of Galen's Commentary on the Hippocratic Epidemics
16.30-17.15 Hans Hinrich Biesterfeldt (Ruhr-Universität Bochum):
Die hippokratischen Aphorismen in syrischen und arabischen Übersetzungen: ein Vergleich
17.15-18.00 Coffee break
18.00-19.00 Evening Lecture
Vivian Nutton (University College London):
From Largus to Linacre: the economy of medical translation
Friday, 21 March, 2014
9.00-12.00 Workshop: Galen's commentary on Hippocrates' Aphorisms
9.00-10.30 Samuel Barry, Taro Mimura, Christina Savino
Introduction to the Syriac, Arabic, and Latin tradition of Galen's commentary on Aphorisms
Comparative reading of passages preserved in Greek, Syriac-Arabic, and Latin
with collaboration of Maria Börno and Giulia Ecca
10.30-11.00 Coffee break
11.00-12.00 Comparative reading of passages preserved in Greek, Syriac-Arabic, and Latin
12.00-13.00 Morning session: Hebrew translations
12.15-13.00 Gerrit Bos, Guido Mensching (Universität zu Köln, Freie Universität Berlin):
Jewish multilingualism in medieval medical lexicography and translations
14.30-16.00 Afternoon session 1: Latin translations
14.30-15.15 Stefania Fortuna (Università Politecnica delle Marche):
Le traduzioni di medicina dal greco: nuovi contributi
15.15-16.00 Anna Maria Urso (Università di Messina):
Pietro D'Abano e Niccolò da Reggio traduttori di Galeno: il caso del Περὶ μαραϲμοῦ
16.00-16.30 Coffee break
16.30-18.00 Afternoon session 2: Latin translations
16.30-17.15 Ivan Garofalo (Università di Siena):
Gerardo of Cremona and Burgundio da Pisa: two translators of Galen's De methodo medendi
17.15-18.00 Nicoletta Palmieri (Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne):
Caratteristiche comuni dei traduttori Greco-latini dell'Articella
Source : Mommsen Gesellschaft
Open Access (free to read) articles:
[PLEISTOCENE ARCHAEOLOGY IN EAST ASIA] New light on the prehistory of the Southern Mountains of Java
Examples of the Survival in Scotland of Superstitions Relating to Fire.
Notes on some Polished Stone Discs of Unknown Use in the Museum.
Stella’s “Decern Puellae.”
Learn more about Open Access and Archaeology at: http://bit.ly/YHuyFK
LUXOR, EGYPT—Reuters reports that an alabaster statue of Princess Iset has been unearthed in Luxor at the temple of her father, Amenhotep III, who ruled Egypt during the 18th Dynasty. Iset’s figure was found between the feet of her father’s colossal, seated statue, and although her name and royal title are inscribed near her feet, her face has eroded. A statue depicting Amenhotep with all of his children is on display at the Egyptian Museum.
It’s not every day that an archaeologist helps serve a Federal search warrant, never mind one that was part of a 500-officer dawn raid at multiple museums in California and Chicago. The search was for smuggled Thai archaeological artifacts, brought into the US since 2003 and added to museum collections under suspicious circumstances.
To get a first-person, behind-the-scenes account of the 2008 raids and see the impact of site destruction on archaeological evidence in Southeast Asia, come to this special address at the Association for Asian Studies annual conference:
“Hot Pots, Museum Raids, and the Race to Uncover Asia’s Archaeological Past”
WHEN: Sat., March 29, 5-7PM
WHERE: Grand Ballroom, Salon H, Marriott Hotel-Downtown, 1201 Market St, Philadelphia, PA
(FREE and open to the public)
In my talk I’ll cover Penn Museum’s most recent research on Thai and Lao archaeology, as well as updates on the Federal investigation into smuggling of Southeast Asian antiquities. What happens to knowledge about ancient societies when sites like Ban Chiang are looted to supply antiquities markets? What is it like for the archaeologist to be an expert witness in a big legal case?
My talk will be followed by a conversation with Dr. Thongchai Winichakul, President of the AAS, on the themes I’ve explored, approached from the perspective of a non-archaeologist. Audience Q&A and a reception to follow will allow more opportunity to continue the discussion informally.
Sponsored by the Henry Luce Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies
Rare, prehistoric rock art which could be more than 4,000 years old has been discovered in the Brecon Beacons.
The Bronze Age discovery was made late last year by national park geologist Alan Bowring.
Experts claim the stone probably served as a way marker for farming communities.
Similar stones have been found in other parts of Britain but they are thought to be rare in mid Wales.
Its exact location in the Brecon Beacons is being kept a secret and news of its discovery comes after archaeologists found a similar ancient rock in the Scottish Highlands. Read more.
People often ask me, What does a Keeper do? Which is a fair question—you might think of Zoo Keepers with that terminology. You could equate our work, at the most basic level, as “collections management,” but I think we’d all say we do so much more than that. There are Keepers in all of our museum sections: African, American, Asian, Babylonian, Egyptian, Mediterranean, the Near East, Oceanian. We also have a small European collection [think stone tools, not paintings] as well as an Historic collection. For all of these sections, we have the same title and same basic “other duties as required” job description. But for each section, those other duties differ.
Me? I’m the Fowler/Van Santvoord Keeper of the Near Eastern Collections. And sure, on a daily basis, I care for the collections. I take record photography, I rehouse the pieces, I make sure that their numbers are clearly written and are accounted for in the database. But being a Keeper is so much more. Some days, I transcribe someone else’s research into the database. Some days, I do original research on the objects. I make recommendations on objects to loan to visiting curators. I answer questions from the public. I give tours of storage and galleries. I bring out objects for classes. I recommend objects for classes. But the thing that is the bread and butter of the Near East: researchers. On average, our department alone sees 100 individual researchers a year. I am often asked what my area of expertise is. And I explain that I don’t have the luxury of having one. When a researcher comes I need to be an expert in their subject matter as it interacts with our collection. They might think they know what they want to see when they are here, but my job is to pull the objects they didn’t know we had but I know will help their study. So in one week, I might have to know about third millennium Mesopotamian cylinder seals; locally made and imported Terra Sigilata ware found in Israel [so we’re talking the AD/BC change over]; and 9th century BC metal pieces from Iran. That’s a light week-only three diverse subjects.
Don’t get intimidated—it’s what most of love most about our jobs: the challenge of learning something new every day. I’m often asked what my background is in; my undergraduate degree is in Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology, I worked here at the museum for a few years with the Near East collections, I excavated and taught at a classical field school in Italy for 6 seasons, and my graduate degree is in Art History. So I had the benefit of learning both Classical and Near Eastern sites, statues, pottery types in the classroom; I learned how to identify things from the field level Classically, and just after the field here in the basement of the Near East. I learned how to research and discuss these same materials in a broader sense. I’m diverse, but not really—I couldn’t discuss Manet to save my life.
I received a research request in February, for March [we prefer 3 weeks’ notice so that we have time to locate the objects they request, the objects they didn’t know we had to be requested, and to make sure there is room in the researcher room; again, about 100 a year so most often you are not alone in my researcher room] which was the perfect amount of time. This individual wanted to see Mycenaean ware from a few sites. One site is published with field numbers and often with the museum accession numbers. This part of the request is easy. The other half, even he knew would be difficult. The other site has a publication, from 1933, with black and white images of objects that are very colorful. This site didn’t use a field number system, so I have no way of tracking that publication to the boxes full of sherds. We’re talking thousands of sherds. And so, I have to rely on all those years I studied ceramics. I have to be able to look in a box of sherds, determine if they are likely from the same time period as this imported ceramic, I have to go through all these pieces and see if the fabric looks right, if the thickness is correct, if the painting technique matches what he is studying. And because of all those years studying small pieces of broken objects? I was able to match up 95% of his request.
So yes, we Keepers are collections managers, but ask any of us to tell you about our day, and chances are we didn’t put a single thing in a small box. Those of us who are field archaeologists, get the chance to be archaeologists in storage. And it’s wonderfully satisfying.
Faience amulet in form of dwarf god Pataikos
The Pataikos is a minor deity in Ancient Egypt who was strongely related to the dwarfgod Bes. He was a protective deity, associated mostly with pregnant women and small children.
It is 6.3cm (2.5 inch.) high and is made of baked clay.
Egyptian, Hellenistic Period, 330 - 30 BC.
Source: Metropolitan Museum
Medieval desert-dwelling Arabs in Saudi Arabia ate lizards after the advent of Islam, which generally prohibits eating reptiles, new research suggests.
Though historical and anthropological texts had mentioned the taste for these scaly desert snacks, the find is the first archaeological evidence confirming the lizard’s presence in the Arabian diet, study co-author Hervé Monchot, a zooarchaeologist at the Université-Paris Sorbonne, wrote in an email to Live Science.
The lizards were probably eaten because they are “an excellent source of protein,” Monchot said. Read more.
During the 2013 excavation season I completed a number of laser scan models of the site, adding to the already completed laser scan models collected in 2012 at the Palazzo Imperiale.
The main focus of the 2013 season was trialling a new scanner, the Faro Focus 3D, to see how the advancements in scanning time and accuracy could aid our recording of the site.
In total I was able to record 250 individual scans over a three week period, that culminated in precise recordings of the Palazzo Imperiale, notably Building 1, the cryptoporticus on the western façade of the complex, and the storage rooms on its southern side overlooking the Trajanic basin, and the 2013 excavations within Building 8 – which was completed by the staff and students of the Portus Field School. In addition the Terme della Lanterna was completely scanned.
The Faro focus, when compared to the Leica Scanstation Two and C10 previously used on site, allowed for a far greater data collection rate. In the 2012 I was able to capture 57 scans over a two week period using the C10 and was thus limited to certain sections of the site as I simply didn’t have the time to record them.
The ability to create a 360 degree laser scan model within one scan in 10 minutes at an accuracy of 3mm at a 10m range, greatly helped the team at Portus in recording the position of buildings and in identifying key architectural features that would otherwise have been missed using traditional means.
The use of laser scanning allows for a lasting representation of the site as it currently is, in turn allowing future researchers to study the site, without having to travel there. It likewise proved useful in recording the excavation process, with key areas of the 2013 excavation recorded during and after to save time in documenting the entirety of the site using simple 2D drawings.
The 2013 scanning work also re-examined past scanning that took place and with a newer, faster and more accurate laser scanner, it was decided to make updated models of the 2007 scans completed by the University of Southampton’s Geography department. The Faro Focus offered a greater point density within the overall scan model and therefore the newer model is at a high resolution. The scanner, likewise enables better calibration of colour within the scan data, creating a model that is both accurate in terms of spacing and texture which adds to the overall realistic element needed for our study of the site.
There is more work to be done at Portus, with more areas to be recorded, but 2013 saw the first use of the Faro Focus 3D and we hope over subsequent years, that we will be able to benefit from this great tool to create a full reconstruction of the site as it currently is.
Below are a few examples of the already completed scan work.
International Conference on Orality and Greek Literature in the Roman Empire
Museo del Teatro Romano de Cartagena (Murcia), Spain
29-31 May 2014
Organizer: Consuelo Ruiz Montero, Dpto. de Filología Clásica de la Universidad de Murcia
Florida Public Archaeology Network's newest video series, Archaeology in 3 Minutes. Mike Thomin did an awesome job of putting together this video and made me sound like I am not completely sleep-deprived. I honestly don't know what I'm doing blinky-blinking my eyes weirdly. Gotta figure out how to get rid of that. Anyway, enjoy!
(And if you want to see my colleague Ramie Gougeon talk about 3D scanning, check out the video on our main department webpage.)
Jade Figure of a Monster type creature
(Source: The British Museum)
Les fouilles de sauvetage entreprises à l’occasion de l’installation d’un système de traitement des eaux à Sozopol, l’ancienne Apollonia ont permis à deux équipes de fouilleurs d’explorer une nouvelle partie de la nécropole du Ve s. av. J.-C. . Une partie de cette nécropole avait déjà été fouillées dans les années 1960 par M. Lazarov. On y a trouvé notamment un vase du Peintre d’Erétrie représentant ds guerriers thraces
Les fouilles menées par l’équipe dirigée par Yavor Ivanov et Dimitar Nedev ont permis de découvrir pour le moment une trentaines de tombes ( 27 fosse, 3 urnes cinéraires). Quelques enfants sont inhumés dans des amphores. Le matériel funéraire est dans l’ensemble assez traditionnel pour une nécropole : amphores, plats à poisson, vases à figure noire, monnaies. Plus particulier à Apollonia est la découverte de vases monochromes gris, typiques de l’arrière-pays thrace, mais qui sont également largement produits à Apollonia comme l’a montré D. Nikov dans son ouvrage.
La seconde équipe dirigée par Kristina Panayotova et Margarit Damyanov ont découvert pour le moment une quinzaine de tombes intactes et du matériel entraîné dans un ravin provenant de plusieurs dizaines de tombes endommagées. C’est le premier site fouillé avec autant de tombes d’enfants, qui comprennent comme souvent de nombreuses figurines de terre-cuite.
Au début du IVe s. av. J.-C., la nécropole a cessé de fonctionner. À l’époque hellénistique, cette partie de la nécropole a été réutilisée. On trouve des fosses à déchets avec du matériel du début du IIIe s. av. J.-C., mais aussi plus ancien, notamment des amphores, provenant probablement de la nécropole (dépôts funéraires ou contenu de tombes endommagée).
La découverte la plus intéressante est une épée, un xiphos, pliée en 3. Elle devait mesurer à l’origine 65cm de long avec une lame de 3cm de large. C’est la 3e épée retrouvée à Sozopol. Le pliage fait partie des destructions rituelles que l’on retrouve pour divers types d’objets dans les tombes d’Apollonia. Vu le contexte archéologique et le pliage, elle devait faire partie des biens enterrés avec un défunt dans une tombe du Ve ou du début du IVe s.
Vidéo sur la découverte de l’épée: http://www.zonaburgas.bg/?p=86041
merci à M. Damyanov, pour le complément d’informations.
Following a successful and productive conference at Edinburgh in June 2012, we are pleased to announce a second conference on the theme ‘Locating Popular Culture in the Ancient World’: The conference will be held on 3-5 September 2014 and hosted by the Institute of Classical, Mediterranean and Oriental Studies, University of Wroclaw, Poland.
АРХЕОЛОГIЯ: Науковий журнал Інституту археології НАН України електронна версія (ARCHAEOLOGY: Scientific journal of the Institute of Archaeology of the National Academy of Sciences in Ukraine electronic edition)
full texts (in ukrainian)
4/1989See the full List of Open Access Journals in Ancient Studies
I suppose one could call it the lord’s prayer…but the “lord” in “Lord of the Rings” is usually considered to be a different “lord” than the one in “Lord’s Prayer.”
Egypt has announced that a team of European archaeologists have found a nearly 2-meter- (6 ½-foot-) tall alabaster statue of a pharaonic princess, dating from approximately 1350 B.C., outside the southern city of Luxor.
Minister of Antiquities Mohammed Ibrahim said in in a statement Friday that the statue was once part of a larger statue that was nearly 14 meters (456 feet) tall and guarded the entrance to a temple.
Ibrahim says the statue is of Iset, the daughter of Amenhotep III, and is the first found that depicts her without her siblings. Archaeologists uncovered the statue next to the funerary temple of Amenhotep III, who was worshipped as a deity after his death. (source)
Miss Margaret Alford is named in the 1940 Postscript to the 1925 Preface of LSJ. She also appears in the Preface to E. Fraenkel's Agamemnon (p. xiii).
"In the last ten years the name of Miss Margaret Alford has appeared more than once in the prefaces of works of Greek scholarship published by the Clarendon Press; the present preface is fortunately in a position to follow suit. An indefatigable worker, Spartan in the austerity of her life, a rigid and accomplished grammarian, Miss Alford is at the same time the soul of gentleness. Of her genuine understanding of great poetry I have ample proof. She spent a long time going through the English version of my commentary, correcting errors of the translators and blunders of my own, and giving me, always with disarming modesty, all sorts of invaluable advice."
Fraenkel makes other comments about Miss Alford, but I will have to track them down again before adding them here.
Note: Fraenkel's comment on LSJ and ἄπαρχος in A.Ag.1227 calls for discussion too.
By: Dr. Bethany J. Walker
Annemarie Schimmel Kolleg, University of Bonn
When I was asked to contribute to ASOR’s blogs celebrating women in Middle Eastern archaeology, I was honored and perplexed. My personal story is not particularly special or interesting, in my eyes. I am happy to share it, however, as it is in the culmination of all of our experiences that a story of women in the field can be told and lessons learned for the future.
It is good to start early. I am one of the lucky ones, I suppose, in that I am doing today exactly what I have wanted to do since the age of six, when I finally realized what the difference was between “paleonotology” (my first love – what child doesn’t love dinosaurs??) and “archaeology”. My inspiration was a special woman – my material grandmother, Jean Armagost. A career in archaeology was also her dream, but having grown up during the Depression Era, and at a time when this was the pursuit of the elite, she never had the opportunity to realize it. She seemed to have unlimited time for me and never tired of telling me stories, reading to me, watching archaeology programs on TV with me, and taking me to museums and archaeological and historical sites. Though she passed away over a decade ago, she has continued to be my role model in teaching (which she did on a volunteer basis): you should always have time for your students, and you have a responsibility to help others professionally, as you were along the way. Family encouragement was invaluable. My father, Ray Walker, a professional sportscaster (now retired), never described careers in gendered terms. His aspirations for me were to follow in his footsteps and go “on the air” (which I did with him as a teenager, on the radio); if not that, then I should throw myself 100% into the archaeology.
Your choice of university matters. I chose wisely – Bryn Mawr College. It was the only school to which I applied my senior year in high school, and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made. At the time, it was the only internationally known, stand-alone department of archaeology in the U.S. It had also consistently, for over a century, produced many of the world’s women leaders in Classical and Near Eastern archaeology. I was surrounded there by strong, independently-minded, creative and quirky women. Many of my classmates now occupy prominent positions in the field. There was no field then of “Islamic archaeology” at Bryn Mawr, or anywhere else in the U.S., for that matter, so I made do with anything Middle Eastern. In graduate school I got degrees in Area Studies programs. It was exactly the wide training I needed, and has given me the tools to work with Arabic texts as much as ceramics. I think such a broad base is also an asset when entering the job market.
Be flexible and open-minded. I had very clear ideas about what I wanted when I went to university, many of those ideas based on nothing more than imagination and misconceptions. I chose Bryn Mawr initially to study Egyptology, because I loved Egypt. I fully intended on specializing in architecture – and absolutely not ceramics, which I thought would require from me culinary skills. Cities and cemeteries – those were the kinds of sites I would excavate. Instead, I entered the emerging field of Islamic archaeology (as what I was really drawn to was the Middle East and the Middle Ages), have specialized in ceramics (and I am so glad I did!), and excavate rural Jordan (who would have known that the “imperial frontier” could be so exciting?).
Islamic archaeology is not closed to women. In fact, quite the opposite is true: it is one of the most gender-friendly areas of specialization within the field. I suppose there are a couple of reasons for this. The first is the result of its disciplinary parentage: Islamic archaeology essentially grew out of Islamic art history, in which women scholars have been prominent. The second may have something to do with its newness: we can make of this discipline what we like and define it in our own terms, at least at this stage.
As I look back on the last twenty years, I have seen the field of Islamic archaeology emerge as a new field of study and grow in rich and varied ways. I have been fortunate enough to be at the right place, at the right time, and to be part of this exciting development. When I was a student, Islamic archaeology did not exist as a discipline of its own, and now it is one of the most energized areas of archaeology and is rapidly attracting public interest. It also has local support in Muslim countries. There are more opportunities today than ever before for women to enter the field. I do, however, have concerns. Although women now constitute half of the students in my classrooms – and I have led several field schools with all-women teams (participants all self-selecting) – few of them continue on professionally, in any kind of archaeology. This seems to be true in both the U.S. and Europe. It seems to be difficult to keep women in the field after graduation. Dreams often get swept away with the realities of life and the sacrifices demanded of us. Fieldwork is hard, as it takes us away from responsibilities at home and requires sacrifice of our loved ones, in return. There are solutions, though. “Family friendly” excavations, in which spouses and children are welcome, take the sting out of the long periods of long distance that fieldwork overseas requires (see pages 5-6). Making an academic career in any field is a challenge, particularly when so many women now meet their life partners in graduate school. Fortunately, American universities are increasingly exploring the option of dual-career hires, which can be accomplished in creative and fruitful ways. These are positive, and necessary, developments that offer hope for the future.
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The Archaeology Blogging Carnival has raised some interesting subjects to think about in relation to archaeology and blogging. One aspect I have been thinking about lately is the linear nature of blogging. Most blogging platforms work in a linear fashion. You post and usually, unless one specifies it differently, your most recent post is found at the top of your blog, followed by your next oldest and so on. Having looked at hundreds of Archaeology blogs I would say 99% follow this trend. RSS feeds and email alerts work in the same way, you get the most recent post.
This is a good way to organize a blog but it has its drawbacks. The most serious one I see is that your older work does not actually get viewed as much. Here are my monthly blog stats:
Except for a few abnormalities, every year the monthly views are higher than in the previous year, I am also posting less now. I now have more blog followers and people subscribing to my RSS feed than when I first started. This means that more people see my newest work, on average, than my older stuff. This is the nature of publishing, your audience will grow with time. Your writing and posts will most likely get better with the more practice you have and experience you gain.
However, this does not mean that older work is not good. In fact, much of what people post in the past is very high quality work. Unfortunately, with the time linear fashion of blogs, RSS feeds, alerts, etc. Your early work is never found again except though search engines. The real problem with that is that search engines are viscous feedback loops. They only show the top results, which are according to them the most linked to posts. You only get links if people read your work and decide to link to it. When you first start a blog very few people read your work because your audience has not developed. A small audience means less of a chance of getting links and thus your older work tends to stay buried.
Sure some of that work deserves to stay buried. Some of it is no longer relevant because it was announcing some changes to the blog, or was a news story that is no longer relevant, etc. Some of my work, dare I say, is not the highest quality and should stay buried. However, some of it might be worth re-posting, revisiting, or reexamining. Over the next couple of weeks I am planning on reviewing some of my older posts, maybe re-post, review, or reevaluate what I said. I will try to experiment with trying to break the linear aspect of blog publishing. I am not sure what that will involve but I will experiment over the next couple of weeks, maybe months.
To kick off this process I went back through my blog posts to look at those with the lowest number of views. I found quite a few posts that only got a couple of views- less than half a dozen. Most of these were posts about others work and tended to be some of my first posts, while I was still trying to figure out how to blog (I still am but not have a bit more experience). To be honest, I don’t think any of these posts deserve to get much attention. They add very little original thought to anything and don’t appear to have driven much traffic to those sources.
I am going to erase those posts. Why? It is thought, at least from what I read on SEO blogs, that Google takes a look at the number of posts that a blog has and the number of links to those posts. Blogs with lots of posts with no links get a slight ding it terms of search result rankings. Not anything significant and most rankings have to do with quality of the post, not the overall quality of the blog. But if I can give some of my posts a boost by erasing poor quality ones than it might be worth it.
However, I will add all the content to the end of this post. One, to give the content a better viewing now that I have a larger audience. Two, because it is Friday and I think some of you might enjoy it before the weekend.
On March 27, 2011 I posted about Share Anthropology and it got a grand total of 3 views (2 on page, 1 RSS) or two days. http://shareanthropology.tumblr.com/ It is now defunct but the idea was that people could crowd source Open Access publications in Anthropology and share them. I am re-posting it here because the idea is great and maybe it will inspire someone to try again or do something similar.
May 24, 2011 I posted this video on the history of Beethoven and it rack up 6 view (4 RSS, 2 on site). Half of those views have come since I posted it. Enjoy:
On April 1oth 2011, I posted another video from the same people, Histroy Teachers (well worth checking out their YouTube Channel), and it got a grand total of 7 views.
April 8th, 2011 I posted about these posters (got 8 views) and the original source can be found here. The reason I posted this the first time was because I liked how the posters connected modern events with historical ones. Again, maybe it will inspire someone.
Finally, there was this video (11 views) that I mainly just posted (June 5th 2011) for fun because I have been to these places and the soundtrack was good.
Most of these were for fun so I hope you enjoy them over the weekend.
- Festival of Mars continues (day 7)
- rites at the temple of Vediovis on the Capitoline
- 322 B.C. — death of Aristotle (maybe)
- 149 A.D. — birth of a daughter, Lucilla, to the emperor Marcus Aurelius
- 161 A.D. — death of Antoninus Pius; dies imperii of Lucius Verus and Marcus Aurelius
- 203 A.D.– martyrdom of Perpetua and Felicity
And the winner is, an Unknown Partner of the Gloucester FLO whose object went on the PAS database just as the five millionth recordable object came out of the ground since the PAS ws started. It's a hammie, an Edward III hammie, Record ID: GLO-88ACF7 from "Wraxall And Failand, North Somerset" (I know it well). Meanwhile the PAS database itself lamely limped at the same time toOf course the actual five millionth artefact to come out of the ground under the PAS will probably never be known, there is less than a one-in-five chance that the FLO (and therefore the rest of us) will ever even see it.936,232 objects within 601,453 records.
The Unknown Partner who found GLO-88ACF7 took a break from artefact hunting this afternoon to go to the British Museum for the presentation of a certificate and an interview with the press. Kurt Adams, his FLO gets a well-deserved pay-rise.
Collectors are expressing an interest in acquiring this coin, the ACCG is believed to be keen to make it a featured item in their next 'oppose everything benefit organization'.
The Unknown Partner gets his reward
With the end of last semester, holidays, and deadlines, I fell a bit behind on the Corinthian Scholarship Monthly posts. Yesterday I started to dig out, sift through emails, and find the gems in the bunch. This will be the first of two posts on new scholarship that went live in December to February. I’ll try to get the second part of CSM Dec-Feb by the middle of the month.
And kudos to the google bots for doing such a good job. While we’ve been sleeping, playing, teaching, and resting, those bots have been working non-stop to bring all sorts of little nuggets to our network. As always, I’ve included a broader range of articles and essays that mention the Corinthia without focusing on the region — on the assumption that you will be as interested as I am in a broader Mediterranean context. There are also a few entries from past years that the bots have just brought to my attention.
You can find the full collection of articles and books related to Corinthian studies at the Corinthian Studies Zotero Page. The new entries are tagged according to basic categories. Version 2 of the library in RIS format is scheduled to be released by summer.
Finally, I am always looking for reviewers of articles or books listed in the CSM posts. If you can write and are qualified, drop me a line.
Ambraseys, N. N. “Ottoman Archives and the Assessment of the Seismicity of Greece 1456–1833.” Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering 12, no. 1 (February 1, 2014): 5–43. doi:10.1007/s10518-013-9541-5.
Angeli Bernardini, Paola, ed. Corinto: luogo di azione e luogo di racconto : atti del convengo internazionale, Urbino, 23-25 settembre 2009. Pisa [etc.]: F. Serra, 2013.
Baika, Kalliopi. “The Topography of Shipshed Complexes and Naval Dockyards.” In Shipsheds of the Ancient Mediterranean, edited by David Blackman and Boris Rankov, 185–209. Cambridge University Press, 2013.
Balzat, Jean-Sébastien, and Benjamin W. Millis. “M. Antonius Aristocrates: Provincial Involvement with Roman Power in the Late 1st Century B.C.” Hesperia: The Journal of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens 82, no. 4 (December 2013): 651–672. doi:10.2972/hesperia.82.4.0651.
Blackman, David, and Boris Rankov. Shipsheds of the Ancient Mediterranean. Cambridge University Press, 2013.
Borbonus, Dorian. Columbarium Tombs and Collective Identity in Augustan Rome. Cambridge University Press, 2014.
Boyle, A. J., ed. Seneca: Medea: Edited with Introduction, Translation, and Commentary. Oxford University Press, 2014.
Collins, John J., ed. The Oxford Handbook of Apocalyptic Literature. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.
Docter, Roald, and Babette Bechtold. “Two Forgotten Amphorae from the Hamburg Excavations at Carthage (Cyprus, and the Iberian Peninsula) and Their Contexts.” Carthage Studies 5 (2011) (2013): 91–128.
Forbes, Hamish A. “Off-Site Scatters and the Manuring Hypothesis in Greek Survey Archaeology: An Ethnographic Approach.” Hesperia: The Journal of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens 82, no. 4 (December 2013): 551–594. doi:10.2972/hesperia.82.4.0551.
Frangoulidis, Stavros. “Reception of Strangers in Apuleius’ Metamorphoses: The Examples of Hypata and Cenchreae.” In A Companion to the Ancient Novel, edited by Edmund P. Cueva and Shannon N. Byrne, 275–287. Malden, MA: John Wiley & Sons, 2014.
Hall, Jonathan M. Artifact and Artifice: Classical Archaeology and the Ancient Historian. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2014.
Hawthorn, Geoffrey. Thucydides on Politics: Back to the Present. Cambridge University Press, 2014.
Heil, Andreas, and Gregor Damschen, eds. Brill’s Companion to Seneca: Philosopher and Dramatist. Leiden: Brill, 2013.
Hollander, William den. Josephus, the Emperors, and the City of Rome: From Hostage to Historian. Leiden: Brill, 2014.
James, Paula. “Apuleius’ Metamorphoses: A Hybrid Text?” In A Companion to the Ancient Novel, edited by Edmund P. Cueva and Shannon N. Byrne, 317–329. Malden, MA: John Wiley & Sons, 2014.
Jeffreys, Elizabeth. “We Need to Talk about Byzantium: Or, Byzantium, Its Reception of the Classical World as Discussed in Current Scholarship, and Should Classicists Pay Attention?” Classical Receptions Journal 6, no. 1 (January 1, 2014): 158–174. doi:10.1093/crj/clt032.
Kamen, Deborah. “Sale for the Purpose of Freedom: Slave-Prostitutes and Manumission in Ancient Greece.” The Classical Journal 109, no. 3 (March 2014): 281–307. doi:10.5184/classicalj.109.3.0281.
Kampbell, Sarah Marie. “The Economy of Conflict: How East Mediterranean Trade Adapted to Changing Rules, Allegiances and Demographics in the 10th – 12th Centuries AD.” PhD Thesis, Princeton University, 2014.
Klapaki. “The Journey to Greece in the American and the Greek Modernist Literary Imagination: Henry Miller and George Seferis.” In Travel, Discovery, Transformation: Culture and Civilization, Volume 6, edited by Gabriel R. Ricci, 59–78. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 2014.
Kolluoğlu, Biray, and Meltem Toksöz, eds. Cities of the Mediterranean: From the Ottomans to the Present Day. I.B.Tauris, 2010.
Korner, Ralph J. “Before ‘Church’: Political, Ethno-Religious, and Theological Implications of the Collective Designation of Pauline Christ Followers as Ekklēsiai.” PhD Thesis, McMaster University, 2014.
Kreitzer, L.J. “Hadrian as Nero Redivivus: Some Supporting Evidence from Corinth.” In Judaea and Rome in Coins 65 BCE-135 CE: Papers Presented at the International Conference Hosted by Spink, 13th-14th September 2010, edited by David M Jacobson and Nikos Kokkinos, 229–242. London: Spink, 2012.
Legarreta-Castillo, Felipe De Jesus. The Figure of Adam in Romans 5 and 1 Corinthians 15: The New Creation and Its Ethical and Social Reconfigurations. Minneapolis: Fortress, 2014.
Matz, Brian J. “Early Christian Philanthropy as a ‘Marketplace’ and the Moral Responsibility of Market Participants.” In Distant Markets, Distant Harms: Economic Complicity and Christian Ethics, edited by Daniel Finn, 115–145? New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.
Mitski, Efterpi. “Commodifying Antiquity in Mary Nisbet’s Journey to the Ottoman Empire.” In Travel, Discovery, Transformation: Culture and Civilization, Volume 6, edited by Gabriel R. Ricci, 45–58. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 2014.
Morhange, Christophe, Amos Salamon, Guénaelle Bony, Clément Flaux, Ehud Galili, Jean-Philippe Goiran, and Dov Zviely. “Geoarchaeology of Tsunamis and the Revival of Neo-Catastrophism in the Eastern Mediterranean.” Rome “La Sapienza” Studies on the Archaeology of Palestine & Transjordan 11 (2014): 61–81.
Ong, H. T. “Paul’s Personal Relation with Earliest Christianity: A Critical Survey.” Currents in Biblical Research 12, no. 2 (February 7, 2014): 146–172. doi:10.1177/1476993X12467114.
Pachis, Panayotis. “Data from Dead Minds? Dream and Healing in the Isis / Sarapis Cult During the Graeco-Roman Age.” Journal of Cognitive Historiography 1, no. 1 (January 23, 2014): 52–71.
Pallis, Georgios. “Inscriptions on Middle Byzantine Marble Templon Screens.” Byzantinische Zeitschrift 106, no. 2 (January 2013): 761–810. doi:10.1515/bz-2013-0026.
Polinskaya, Irene. A Local History of Greek Polytheism: Gods, People and the Land of Aigina, 800-400 BCE. Leiden: Brill, 2013.
Priestley, Jessica. Herodotus and Hellenistic Culture: Literary Studies in the Reception of the Histories. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.
Punt, Jeremy. “Framing Human Dignity through Domination and Submission? Negotiating Borders and Loyalties (of Power) in the New Testament.” Scriptura 112 (2013): 1–17. doi:10.7833/112-0-82.
Rankov, Boris. “Slipping and Launching.” In Shipsheds of the Ancient Mediterranean, edited by David Blackman and Boris Rankov, 102–123. Cambridge University Press, 2013.
Reed, David Alan. “Paul on Marriage and Singleness: Reading 1 Corinthians with the Augustan Marriage Laws.” PhD Thesis. University of St. Michael’s College, 2013.
Saliari, Konstantina, and Erich Draganits. “Early Bronze Age Bone Tubes from the Aegean: Archaeological Context, Use and Distribution.” Archeometriai Műhely [Archaeometry Workshop] (2013): 179–192.
Shpuza, Ermanl. “Allometry in the Syntax of Street Networks: Evolution of Adriatic and Ionian Coastal Cities 1800–2010.” Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design (2014). doi:doi:10.1068/b39109.
Siek, Thomas James. “A Study in Paleo-Oncology: On the Identification of Neoplastic Disease in Archaeological Bone.” Master of Arts Thesis, University of Waterloo, 2014.
Thein, Alexander. “Reflecting on Sulla’s Clemency.” Historia 63, no. 2 (April 1, 2014): 166–186.
Toffolo, Michael B., Alexander Fantalkin, Irene S. Lemos, Rainer C. S. Felsch, Wolf-Dietrich Niemeier, Guy D. R. Sanders, Israel Finkelstein, and Elisabetta Boaretto. “Towards an Absolute Chronology for the Aegean Iron Age: New Radiocarbon Dates from Lefkandi, Kalapodi and Corinth.” PLoS ONE 8, no. 12 (December 26, 2013): e83117. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0083117.
Waterfield, Robin. Taken at the Flood: The Roman Conquest of Greece. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.
Williams, Drake, and H. H. “‘Imitate Me’: Interpreting Imitation In 1 Corinthians in Relation to Ignatius of Antioch.” Perichoresis 11, no. 1 (June 1, 2013): 77–95.
Wright, Christopher. The Gattilusio Lordships and the Aegean World 1355-1462. Leiden: Brill, 2014.
I came across several variations on the image below. It is certainly an apocryphal story, but one that may perhaps be worth commenting on.First, the sheer number of these kinds of stories and the variations on them suggest that this is an example of an urban legend. Whether it is based on any actual real-life experience will be impossible to tell. But I suspect that these stories may perhaps be circulated by those who are hoping to get into university, or to do better at university than others, and thus try to persuade gullible classmates to do things that will cause them to fail to gain admission or get a good grade in the class.
But what could one say about the story if it were true? On the one hand, to hand in five mostly or entirely blank pages knowing full well that one could fail, and that one would be less likely to fail if one filled the pages with relevant writing, certainly is a courageous act.
On the other hand, the description given does not say that students were asked merely to define courage, but to write about it, and so on the basis of the information given, the student did not deserve an A+.
Finally, I imagine that real-life professors would hesitate to give an A+ even if they thought this was a genuinely creative and insightful answer, because other students might then try the same, appealing to this precedent. But that need not be a concern. The appropriate action would be to give them lower if not indeed failing grades, and point out that it is not courage to follow where someone else has successfully gone, merely in the hope of replicating their outcome and sharing in their glory.
As an aside, in relation to the quest for the historical Jesus, it is worth pointing out that this is one reason why multiple attestation alone is not a sufficient grounds for asserting that something is historical. There are certain kinds of stories that people love to pass on, and skepticism is thus called for among historians, as also among university applicants and college students
It’s overcast Friday morning here in North Dakotaland, but the temperature has inched its way over the 0 mark and promises to get around 20 ABOVE by later this afternoon. I’ll spend the morning looking for sunscreen!
As we enjoy in this balmy late winter day, it is my pleasure to provide you with some reading material.
- Papyrus and looting from Douglas Boin and Dimitri Nakassis.
- More collapse in Pompeii.
- In related news, this is what happens when you sample one of my favorite Pompeiiologist voice.
- Kim Bowes was named the new professor-in-charge at the American Academy in Rome.
- Sebastian Heath is doing Sebastian Heath things here.
- Kostis Kourelis will be talking about “Corinth’s Forgotten Architects” here and his talk will be streamed. You can get a quick primer on his talk by perusing his blog here.
- Socially responsible archaeology.
- The sequel to the 300 looks… strange.
- But more importantly, I’m always disappointed when scholars go and ruin something as cool as Medieval rocket cats.
- And we’re supposed to convince people that our discipline is not boring! (I kid, because this is a well considered post.)
- Bone buildings.
- Anthropology and how we poo.
- Apparently, all evidence for the oil industry in North Dakota will be gone in 100 years.
- If the moon was one pixel.
- Atari and archaeology: this is so cool and potentially important for how we understand the archaeology of 21st century capitalism.
- Writers on the train. This is a cool and clever idea.
- Some cool stuff on Philadelphia this week. First, some photographs of Philadelphia slum from the early 20th century. Next, the decline of the Philadelphia accent. Finally, a little primer on how some folks talked where I grew up.
- Landscape photos of prisons with death row.
- Good luck to Kiara Kraus-Parr/Jendrysik in her run for state attorney general!
- What I’m reading: M. Weimer, Learner-Centered Teaching: Five Key Changes to Practice. Second Edition. 2013.
- What I’m listening to: The New Puritans, Fields of Reeds. Beck, Sea Change.
[Sigh] Peter Tompa appends a comment to Andy Baines' post "David Knell and Paul Barford are missing the point" (Thursday, 6 March 2014) once again demonstrating - if more demonstration was required - that he is utterly incapable of understanding something as rocket-science like as gridded fieldwalking. Detectorist Baines had been wondering why taking material out of surface scatters could be considered as causing distortion of the evidence. I set out to attempt to explain it to people confused by this issue. I thought I'd presented it in a fairly understandable way (that was my intent) and Mr Baines had no further questions. I was underestimating the US trade lobbyist's inability to cope with Plain English and worth-a-thousand-words pictures. But then, my text was not written with such people in mind. Anyhow, "Cultural Property Observer" Tompa could not understand what it's all about, and appended a comment to Mr Baines' post to say so:This is a red herring. Archaeologists don't record everything either; in fact the usual process is to excavate down to the juicy area (throwing out everything in the process) and then "meticulously recording." In places like Israel, this means blowing through hundreds of years of Ottoman and Byzantine history to get to the Classical levels. In places like Iraq by contrast, evidence of Jews has been regularly destroyed.The only red herring, Jewish or otherwise, is Mr Tompa's apparent confusion of the notion of surface survey with excavation. The clue is in the name, surface surveys consider what is on the surface, excavations are what you do when you excavate down into it, while standing building surveys are what archaeologists do standing up, or on ladders, while aerial survey requires being even higher. These are just a few of the modern techniques utilised by modern archaeology, and just as a standing building survey can be frustrated by someone driving a bulldozer, so a surface survey can be frustrated by someone stripping out the more diagnostic artefacts as collectables. On the sites Mr T. mentions, after ploughing, it is the upper levels, the ploughsoil, which will contain the evidence of the later periods (Byzantine, Ottoman, and Medieval Jewish), and surface survey is used all over the Near East
Vignette: I have long ago ceased to believe that Mr Tompa actually believes a word of what he writes as part of his paid lobbying. The guy is a menace to informed debate with his various deliberate misinterpretations and red herring arguments.
The day before yesterday, I learned that a friend of mine had previously interviewed Tony Banks and chatted with other members of the band Genesis, of which he is a huge fan. Yesterday, the Genesis album The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway was the focus of an article that came to my attention in The New Yorker. One of the things mentioned in the latter article is the appropriation of Biblical and classical literature in Genesis songs. As I was pondering this, I also saw the image below, which suggests that science provides a narrative which eliminates the need for fairy tales. I don't know about you, but fairy tales are not in my experience focused solely or even primarily on explaining where the matter we are composed of comes from. That tends to be myth. Fairy tales tend to focus on navigating the challenges of life, avoiding being deceived, finding true love, and other such concerns. And suggesting that scientific understanding somehow invalidates the usefulness of such stories seems to me to be a profound misunderstanding of what stories are and how they function in our lives. As yet, I have seen no evidence which suggests that we as a species can do without stories – factual stories, but also fictional ones. New discoveries may indeed make old stories seem obviously dated. But storytelling has always involved updating and adapting. Why should our era be any different?
You can listen to the entire album The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway on YouTube:
The Pachacamac archaeological site, located about 40 kilometers southeast of Lima, has yielded some new finds.
According to Peru21, archaeologists working at the site have found two relatively well-preserved artifacts at the site: a small wooden carving depicting a female figure and a cloth covered with brightly-colored feathers.
Peru21 reports that the pieces were found by specialists who work at the Pachacamac site museum. The objects were discovered in the area of the site called Pilgrims’ Plaza.
The wooden figurine measures 8.5 centimeters long, and bears the likeness of a standing woman with her hands resting on her chest. Read more.
This week marks a new and exciting milestone in the Pelagios 3 project - the start of work on the ancient Greek geographic tradition. There's more Latin to do of course: our work packages run on a staggered, overlapping 6-month basis, and, while we already have 19 documents in the system (some in both Latin and their modern language translation), future additions will include some major itinerary lists—including the Antonine Itineraries and Ravenna Cosmography—as well as a number of smaller but fascinating geographic sources such as the Haidra mosaic, some more inscribed vessels, and the Piazzale delle Corporazione at Ostia.But from today we'll start introducing Greek documents into the system. Ancient Greek traditions of knowledge about geography extend far beyond Plato's "frogs around a pond" metaphor for Greek settlements around the Aegean Sea. From Homer's Odyssey, Greek texts push the boundaries of travel, exploration and knowledge, and Odysseus, the man who 'saw the cities of many men and knew their minds', stands as the archetypal explorer for Greeks who settled in places as far off as the Black Sea, Massalia (Marseille) and Libya. Later Greek authors like Hecataeus, Herodotus, Aristotle, Pytheas, Eratosthenes, Hipparchus, Posidonius, Artemidorus and Ptolemy are largely responsible for the way we conceptualise geography today (indeed, Eratosthenes invents the discipline), and we still use the terms that they came up with—terms such as equator, meridian, parallel, latitude and longitude. At the same time, much Greek geography is almost cosmological in nature—an attempt to understand the form of the earth and its place in the universe.
Remarkably, however, given the number and detail of these ancient witnesses, almost no Greek maps survive, and it is debate whether maps were even a feature of Greek traditions of geographical knowledge. (A map documented in Herodotus's Histories, carried by a certain Aristagoras of Mytilene, becomes the site of contestation and debate, while Herodotus himself 'laughs at' the schematic representations of his contemporaries.) Instead Greek conceptualizations of the world were almost exclusively in a narrative form, from numerous periploi (sailing itineraries) to Strabo, whose Geografica remains central to our understanding of global geography in the transition to Empire.Working with Ancient Greek texts will introduce some new challenges for us to tackle. To begin with change in alphabet will take a little getting used to for some of the team! Fortunately recent work by Bruce Robertson, Greg Crane and others on OCRing ancient Greek means that we should be able to include a range of previously inaccessible texts. We can also draw on experience form the Hestia project and a promising new approach developed by Thomas Efer at the University of Leipzig that can identify toponyms in a Greek text by comparing it to a previously marked up English text. We don't yet know what will be the most efficient combination of methodologies but at least we have plenty to choose from.We have enormously enjoyed working with the Latin texts and will continue doing so, but the possibilities for analysis opened up by annotating documents from these two strongly related yet radically divergent traditions are incredibly exciting.
[First posted in AWOL 10 March 2010. Most recently updated 7 March 2014]
AlpheiosThe goal of the Alpheios project is to help people learn how to learn languages as efficiently and enjoyably as possible, and in a way that best helps them understand their own literary heritage and culture, and the literary heritage and culture of other peoples throughout history.Our initial focus will be on classical literature in languages no longer spoken, such as Latin and ancient Greek. The influence of these classics, like the river Alpheios, still runs like a subterranean stream deep beneath the contemporary world, as artists and thinkers continue to draw inspiration from them.We hope that Alpheios will eventually include a wide variety of languages, ancient and modern. By utilizing contemporary technology that is both flexible and adaptive, Alpheios should make language learning both easier and more immediately rewarding. By sharing these tools and the source code in which they are written freely on the Web, the Alpheios Project also hopes to encourage their collaborative development.The software is currently in Beta release, with all the caveats normally associated with that level of development.
Alpheios TextsText Enhancements:
- TEI with Syntax Diagrams
- TEI with Translation
- TEI XML
BOOK REVIEW: "Surrender to our verbosity!" Or at least read Simon Schama's history of the Jews In his brilliant new book, the unconventional scholar somehow manages to be simultaneously sentimental and subversive, consensual and contrarian (Stuart Schoffman, Haaretz). A few excerpts:“The Story of the Jews: Finding the Words 1000 BC – 1492 AD,” by Simon Schama; Ecco/HarperCollins, 496 pages, $40Plus Josephus gets "valorized."
Jerusalem, Vilna, Babylon, Brooklyn: historic wellsprings of Jewish life and lore. But Elephantine Island? Who ever heard of Elephantine Island, also known as Yeb, in the Nile River in Upper Egypt, the site of today’s Aswan? Who knew that an Aramaic-speaking colony of Jews, in the military service of imperial Persia, lived there in the 5th century B.C.E., the period of Ezra and Nehemiah, and built their own temple, complete with animal sacrifices?
Throughout the book, Schama draws impressively on cutting-edge academic studies. In the first chapter, his main source is “The Elephantine Papyri in English,” by Bezalel Porten, et al. (1996). The papyri, written in Aramaic and discovered in 1893 by an amateur Egyptologist, testify to Sabbath and Passover rituals as well as the prevalence of intermarriage. “The Elephantine Yahudim,” Schama pointedly writes, “were Yahwists who were not going to be held to the letter of observance laid down by Jerusalemites any more than, say, the vast majority of Jews now who believe themselves to be, in their way, observant, will accept instruction on what it means to be Jewish (or worse, who is or isn’t a Jew) from the ultra-Orthodox.”
Schama calls the Elephantine story the “first” because, unlike the biblical accounts of Moses and the Exodus, or David and Solomon – stories that the author aptly characterizes as a poetic “echo” of what actually happened – this one (which ended when Egypt overthrew Persian rule) is based on hard archaeological findings.
Schama has a special fondness for the Dead Sea Scrolls, a corpus that also lies outside the official canon. “Some of it is mesmerizingly, crazily, wordy,” he writes. He takes special note of the apocalyptic War Scroll, which describes “exactly what must be inscribed on trumpets, banners and even weapons in the battle array of the Sons of Light ... We are going to write the enemy into capitulation! Surrender to our verbosity or else!”
The book is based on Schama's BBC documentary, on which more here and links. And there's lots more on the Elephantine papyri here.
This website is devoted to archaeological and historical research in the area of the ancient near-eastern kingdom of "Biainili", better known by the Assyrian name "Urartu". This is the area of Eastern Turkey, North-Western Iran, Armenia and parts of Azerbaijan.
- Humboldt Kolleg. "At the Northern Frontier of Near Eastern Archaeology: Recent Research on Caucasia and Anatolia in the Bronze Age" (Venice, 9.-11. Jan. 2013)
- ATATÜRK UNIVERSITY & ESRUC. The Forum of Civilisations along the Silk Road. International Symposium on East Anatolia – South Caucasus Cultures. 10-13 October 2012. Erzurum/Turkey
- International Symposium on Biainili-Urartu, Munich 12.-14-Oct. 2007
- Archaeological research in North-Western Iran
- Archäologische Forschungen in Armenien
- - Ausgrabung in Horom 1995, 1997, Nord-Armenien (Stephan Kroll in Zusammenarbeit mit Ruben Badaljan, Phil Kohl und David Stronach: IPARC)
- - Survey in Süd-Armenien 2000 - German Version (Stephan Kroll in Zusammenarbeit mit Pavel Avetisyan, Susanna Melkonyan und Ursula Hellwag)
- - 2000 Survey in Southern Armenia - English Version (Stephan Kroll in co-operation with Pavel Avetisyan, Susanna Melkonyan, Ursula Hellwag)
- - Survey in Süd-Armenien 2001 - (Stephan Kroll in Zusammenarbeit mit Pavel Avetisyan, Arsen Bobokhyan und Esther Altmann)
- - Archäologische Forschungen in Süd-Armenien 2003-2004 (Stephan Kroll in Zusammenarbeit mit Pavel Avetisyan und Esther Altmann)
Bowls containing a set of small pointed instruments, a coin with a lion and portrait of Nero, and an intact egg were found at the Turkish site of Sardis
African Elephants deserve protection, but should this mean effectively banning the sale of antiques made of ivory? And what of public consultation? Shouldn't there be an opportunity for collectors to make their concerns known before such a ban is put in force?
One would think so, but as Doug Bandow, a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute, has forcefully argued that has not happened. Indeed, instead of writing new rules and allowing for meaningful public notice and comment, the Obama Administration has simply reinterpreted current rules in a new, particularly draconian fashion to pursue what can only be characterized as a prohibitionist agenda.
Antiquities and coin collectors beware; there are some at the Archaeological Institute of America, the US State Department and US Customs who would love nothing more than to achieve a similar ban on the sale of all antiquities and historical coins.
Only continued vigilance can stop this from happening.
The Athens Open Meeting of the ASCSA will take place on March 14, 2014.
The post Work of the School 2013 and Rupestral Inscriptions in the Greek World appeared first on Αρχαιολογία Online.
There was an unanimous agreement regarding the first stage of the sarcophagus' conservation procedure.
The post Towards the Conservation of the Unique Wooden Sarcophagus From Phaliro appeared first on Αρχαιολογία Online.
A shaft tomb containing skeletal remains, accompanied by a rich assemblage of grave goods and guardian figure, has been discovered in Mexico
The Temple of Antoninus and Faustina (Templum Divi Antonini et Divae Faustinae) was built by the emperor Antoninus Pius in A.D. 141 on the north side of the Via Sacra shortly after the death of his wife, the empress Faustina. When Antoninus Pius died in A.D. 161 (on 7th March), the temple was re-dedicated to Antoninus and Faustina at the instigation of his successor, Marcus Aurelius.
The inscription on the architrave records the first dedication: “Divae Faustinae Ex S.C.” (To the divine Faustina by decree of the senate). The other inscription, added afterwards on the frieze, records the second: “Divi Antonino et” (To the divine Antoninus and).
In the middle ages the temple was converted into the Roman Catholic Church of San Lorenzo in Miranda. Today a flight of steps leads up to the ten standing Corinthian columns of the original temple which are now part of the church.
Check the Digital Roman Forum website to see some computer generated reconstructions of this temple.
NEW JOURNAL:We are very pleased to announce the publication of the first issue of the Journal of Ancient Near Eastern History.(HT Michael Helfield.)
The first issue is available for free and articles can be downloaded at the following link:
Contents of JANEH Volume 1 Issue 1:
Editorial Introduction to JANEH
Daniel Fleming, Chasing Down the Mundane: the Near East with Social Historical Interest
Niek Veldhuis, Intellectual History and Assyriology
Francesca Rochberg, The History of Science and Ancient Mesopotamia
Seth Richardson, Mesopotamian Political History: The Perversities
JANEH is published twice per year online and in print. The next issue will appear in October. We are committed to best practices for the consideration, review, and publication of contributions. Manuscripts should be submitted electronically through the JANEH website (http://www.degruyter.com/view/j/janeh) and can be written in in English, French, or German. The style guide for the journal is also available on the website. The international Editorial Board oversees a double-blind peer review process. Under normal circumstances, authors can expect to wait no more than 10 weeks from initial submission to final decision. Moreover, for all subsequent issues of JANEH, articles that have received final approval will be published immediately online and will enter the queue for the next available print issue.
We look forward to your readership and we hope you will consider supporting JANEH by submitting your work for our consideration. Please address any questions to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Marc Van De Mieroop and Steven Garfinkle
Editors of JANEH
Review of Hans Beck, A Companion to Ancient Greek Government. Blackwell Companions to the Ancient World. Malden, MA; Oxford; Chichester: 2013. Pp. xviii, 590. £120.00. ISBN 9781405198585.
Review of Julie Langford, Maternal Megalomania: Julia Domna and the Imperial Politics of Motherhood. Baltimore: 2013. Pp. xi, 203. $55.00. ISBN 9781421408477.
Review of Andrew Monson, Agriculture and Taxation in Early Ptolemaic Egypt: Demotic Land Surveys and Accounts (P. Agri). Papyrologische Texte und Abhandlungen, 46. Bonn: 2012. Pp. xii, 176; 30 plates. €65.00. ISBN 9783774938076.
March 13, 2014 - 10:02 AM - MINOAN SEMINAR 10th ANNIVERSARY Gerald Cadogan, Vice President of the British School at Athens
Some of the greatest architecture in the world, by which I mean attractive and sturdy both, came out of the need to control water. Among my favorites are Roman aqueducts.
The Roman aqueduct (UNESCO World Heritage Site) of Segovia illuminated at night, Autonomous Community of Castilla Leon, Spain, March 2012. Cristina Arias/Cover/Getty Images...
Eltayeb Sayed Abbas: Ritual Scenes on the Two Coffins of PA-dj-imn in Cairo Museum. Archaeopress
Ahmed Mohamed Ali Mansour: Turquoise in the Ancient Egyptian Civilization: an archaeological, textual, and religious study. Archaeopress
M. Chioffi, G. Rigamonti, Màstabe, stele e iscrizioni rupestri egizie dell'Antico Regno. Libro vol. III. Testo geroglifico, traslitterazione, traduzione sia letteraria sia critica. La Mandragora Editrice
Thomas L. Gertzen, École de Berlin und "Goldenes Zeitalter" (1882-1914) der Ägyptologie als Wissenschaft. Das Lehrer-Schüler- Verhältnis von Ebers, Erman und Sethe, De Gruyter
Melinda Hartwig (ed.), The Tomb Chapel of Menna (TT 69). The Art, Culture, and Science of Painting in an Egyptian Tomb. AUC Press
Barry Kemp: The City of Akhenaten and Nefertiti. Thames and Hudson
Pauline Ledent, L'art dentaire en Egypte Antique. Éditions L'Harmattan
Ludwig D. Morenz: Das Hochplateau von Serabit el-Chadim. EBV-Verlag
Neal Spencer, Kom Firin II. The Urban Fabric and Landscape. British Museum Press
Here is a round-up of today's proverbs and fables - and for previous posts, check out the Bestiaria Latina Blog archives. You can keep up with the latest posts by using the RSS feed, or you might prefer to subscribe by email.
HODIE (Roman Calendar): Nonae Martiae, the Nones of March.
MYTHS and LEGENDS: The art image for today's legend shows The Judgment of Paris; you can also see the legends for the current week listed together here.
TODAY'S MOTTOES and PROVERBS:
TINY MOTTOES: Today's tiny motto is: Insisto firmiter (English: I stand steady).
3-WORD PROVERBS: Today's 3-word verb-less proverb is Tranquillo quilibet gubernator (English: When it's calm, everyone is a helmsman)
AUDIO PROVERBS: Today's audio Latin proverb is Magnus liber magnum malum (English: A big book is a big evil). To read a brief essay about this proverb and to listen to the audio, visit the Latin Via Proverbs blog.
PUBLILIUS SYRUS: Today's proverb from Publilius Syrus is: Necessitatem ferre, non flere addecet (English: It is better to endure what is necessary, not to bewail it).
ERASMUS' ANIMALS: Today's animal proverb from Erasmus is Duos insequens lepores, neutrum capit (English: By chasing two rabbits, he catches neither; from Adagia 3.3.36).
BREVISSIMA: The distich poster for today is Fide Parum, Multum Vide. Click here for a full-sized view.
And here are today's proverbial LOLcats:
FABULAE FACILES: The fable from the Fabulae Faciles widget is Vulpes in Puteum Delapsa et Lupus, the story of a fox who needs help, not conversation (this fable has a vocabulary list).
MILLE FABULAE: The fable from the Mille Fabulae et Una widget is Mula et Imago Eius, a funny little story about a self-important mule.
Greek Bible Art - and Latin and English, too. Below is one of my Greek Bible Art graphics; for the individual Greek, Latin and English versions of the graphic, see the blog post: φωνὴ βοῶντος ἐν τῇ ἐρήμῳ. Vox clamantis in deserto. The voice of one crying in the wilderness.
Agut-Labordère, D. – Gorre, G. – Kossmann, P., Un ostracon démotique et deux ostraca grecs du Muséum d’histoire naturelle de Lyon … 205
Alexandru, St., Some Textual Difﬁculties of Galen’s Treatise De praecognitione in the New Light of Codex Thessalonicensis Vlatadon 14 … 91
Aliquot, J. – Shdaifat, Y. – Weber, Th. M., New Byzantine Inscribed Tombstones from the Land of Moab … 149
Backhuys, Th., Amtliche Mitteilung an Komanos … 199
Boatwright, M. T., Agrippa’s Building Inscriptions … 255
Bonnechere, P., «Gouverner en toute sécurité». L’oracle de Dodone et l’Athenaiôn politeia, 43, 4 … 83
Burris, S. – Fish, J., Sappho 16.13–14 and a Marginal Annotation Attributed in PSI 123 to Nicanor … 29
Burris, S. – Fish, J. – Obbink, D., New Fragments of Book 1 of Sappho … 1
Catling, R. – Marchand, F., Alternative Readings and Restorations of Personal Names in IKaunos and a Note on P.Cair.Zen. 59037 … 121
Christol, M., Valerius Diogenes à Antioche de Pisidie: les mots du pouvoir. Compléments au dossier épigraphique … 276
Driediger-Murphy, L. G., M. Valerius Messala to Teos (Syll.3 601) and the Theology of Rome’s War with Antiochus III … 115
Eck, W. – Pangerl, A., Eine dritte Konstitution Traians für das Heer in Britannien vom 20. Februar 98 … 233
Eck, W. – Pangerl, A. – Weiß, P., Edikt Hadrians für Prätorianer mit unsicherem römischen Bürgerrecht … 241
Finglass, P. J., A New Fragment of Euripides’ Ino … 65
Gorostidi Pi, D., Sui consoli dell’anno 13 d.C.: Nuovi dati dai fasti consulares Tusculani … 265
Gorre, G. – Agut-Labordère, D. – Kossmann, P., Un ostracon démotique et deux ostraca grecs du Muséum d’histoire naturelle de Lyon … 205
Hagedorn, D., Bemerkungen zu Urkunden … 194
Hoffmann-Salz, J., Von Räuberhauptmännern zu guten Römern: Die lokalen Eliten des Hauran in der Kaiserzeit … 293
Kassel, R., Grabinschrift aus Nikomedeia … 90
Kossmann, P. – Agut-Labordère, D. – Gorre, G., Un ostracon démotique et deux ostraca grecs du Muséum d’histoire naturelle de Lyon … 205
Leith, D., Medical Doxography in P. Mil. Vogl. I 15 … 225
Leo, G. M., Bernand, Inscr. métr. 62.6 ἔδευσε πυρί … 87
Lucarini, C. M., Zum neuen Tiberius Donatus … 105
Luppe, W., Zu P.Oxy. 863 + 2806 … 110
Marchand, F. – Catling, R., Alternative Readings and Restorations of Personal Names in IKaunos and a Note on P.Cair.Zen. 59037 … 121
Martín Hernández, R. – Torallas Tovar, S., A Magical Spell on an Ostracon at the Abbey of Montserrat … 175
Morelli, F., Le monete d’oro contanti di SPP X 62 raddoppiato. Un altro registro alfabetico (dell’archivio di Flavius Atias?) … 218
Muratore, D., Su alcuni papiri contenenti Scholia Minora all’Iliade (P.Hamb. 736v, P.Osl. II 12, P.Oxy. 4631) … 51
Obbink, D., Two New Poems by Sappho … 32
Paganini, M. C. D., A Ptolemaic Inscription Rediscovered … 127
Prada, L., Translating Monkeys between Demotic and Greek, or Why a Lynx Is Not Always
a Wildcat: (λυκο)λύγξ = (wnš-)kwf … 111
Prignitz, S., Zur Identiﬁ zierung des Heiligtums von Kalapodi … 133
Rocchi, St., Naticosa. Bemerkungen über ein bislang unbelegtes Adjektiv auf -osus … 107
Roscini, E., Nuove epigraﬁ da Carsulae (Regio VI – Umbria) … 287
Sosin, J. D., Notes on Inscriptions … 147
Spelman, H., Placing Aphrodite: Alcaeus fr. 296b and Horace C. 4.1 … 53
Stoop, J., Two Copies of a Royal Petition from Kerkeosiris, 163–146 BCE … 185
West, St., P.Köln 511 and Warrior Women … 50
Whitehead, D., The Epigraphical Transcripts and Travels of David Ross of Bladensburg … 159
Addendum et Corrigendum ad ZPE 177, 2011, 27–29 64
Corrigendum ad ZPE 187, 2013, 72–76 64
Corrigendum ad ZPE 188, 2014, 275–283 254
Dharmarajika, a large Buddhist stupa in Taxila, Pakistan.
Taxila is an important archaeological site in the Punjab province of Pakistan, and presents to us the stages in the development of a city on the Indus that was alternately influenced by Persia, Greece and Central Asia. From the 5th century BC to the 2nd century AD it was also a Buddhist centre of learning.
Dharmarajika is both the largest and earliest of the Buddhist religious complexes at Taxia. It was built to enshrine the holy relics of Buddha by Asoka the Great, who was also known as "Dharmaraja", (thus name the name of the site being "Dharmarajka").
This circular stupa is 45 metres high, and constructed in solid stone masonry. It was unfortunately significantly damaged during an earthquake in 40 AD, and was rebuilt twice under Kushana rulers. Stone sculptures depicting Buddha and his life adorned the stupa.
During the end of the 5th century, the empire of the Kidara Kushanas was lost to the White Huns. Trade was disrupted, and the economic prosperity diminished, leaving places like Dharmarajika without royal patronage. Dharmarajika was ultimately abandoned like many of the other Buddhist Sangharamas at Taxia.
Photos taken by Anduze traveller.
In the same century that Michelangelo painted the Sistine Chapel and Shakespeare wrote “Richard III,” German artillery experts were trying to master the art of strapping bombs to cats.
A 16th-century treatise on warfare and weapons includes illustrations of cats and doves wearing what look like early jetpacks. The idea was that these animal bombers could set fire to cities or castles that were otherwise inaccessible to human soldiers.
Mitch Fraas, a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries, compiled these images, which derive from a text called “Buch von den probierten Künsten” by a German artillery master named Franz Helm of Cologne. Read more.
Jeff Carter shared the above photo with me on Facebook. He asked me if I had seen this on my visits to Israel, and wrote: “At the Yardenit baptismal site on the Jordan River, Mark 1: 9 – 11 is displayed in various languages – including Jawa…”
I wonder what other science fiction languages are represented around Israel – or languages that can be mistaken for science fictional ones.
Noteer alvast de volgende data in je agenda: de Reuvensdagen 2014 zullen plaatsvinden op 20 en 21 november in Den Haag. Het grootste archeologische congres van de Lage Landen bestaat dit jaar 44 jaar. Ook dit jaar bestaat het programma naast het plenaire gedeelte weer uit parallelsessies. Heb je een idee voor een sessie rond een bepaald thema? Via de website reuvensdagen.nl kun je tot 11 april voorstellen indienen voor lezingensessies, paneldiscussies of andere werkvormen.
De programmacommissie kiest voor een open ‘call for sessions’. Inhoudelijk zijn er geen voorwaarden aan een sessie verbonden: het thema kan specialistisch of breed, archeologisch-inhoudelijk of beleidsgerelateerd zijn, alles is mogelijk.
Na de selectie van de sessies volgt half april een ‘call for papers’. In deze ronde krijgen individuele deelnemers aan de Reuvensdagen de kans in te tekenen op de sessies met een specifieke bijdrage. Op deze manier hoopt men de actieve participatie van zoveel mogelijk mensen te stimuleren. Dat betekent dat men bij het indienen van een idee voor een sessie nog niet de hele sessie ingevuld hoeft te hebben. Na de ‘call for papers’ kan op basis van de aanmeldingen en in overleg met de programmacommissie de sessie definitief ingevuld worden.
Vertrouwde onderdelen zoals de topvondsten, de Reuvenslezing, de informatiemarkt en de posterpresentaties maken ook dit jaar weer deel uit van het programma.
COUNTY ANTRIM, IRELAND—Excavations at Carrickfergus Castle by a team from Queen’s University have revealed a Victorian-era tunnel into the Great Hall of the 800-year-old fortification. Environment Minister Mark H. Durkan has granted the team another month to investigate the areas that had been disturbed by the Victorian diggers, including what could be medieval walls. “From the Victorian works through to medieval pottery from Carrickfergus, Britain and even France, these finds will help bring this site to life,” he told The News Letter. The restoration and renovation work will open the castle’s dungeons and the ammunition room to visitors.
HOUSTON, TEXAS—Grant Adamson of Rice University has translated a papyrus discovered 100 years ago outside a temple in the Egyptian town of Tebtunis. Infrared images of the papyrus have made parts of the text, written mostly in Greek, more legible. It is a letter written 1,800 years ago by an Egyptian soldier named Aurelius Polion, who was serving in a Roman legion in Europe. He is desperate to hear from his family, and wants to make the long journey home to see his mother, sister, and brother. “I think that some aspects of military service belong to a common experience across ancient and modern civilizations—part of our human experience in general really. Things like worry and homesickness,” Adamson told Live Science.
DUNEDIN, NEW ZEALAND—A study of the isotope ratios in the skeletons of Lapita people who lived on Vanuatu’s Efate Island some 3,000 years ago suggests that they relied on reef fish, marine turtles, fruit bats, and “free-range pigs and chickens,” for their food rather than on cultivated crops. Rebecca Kinaston of the University of Otago told Z News that as they moved eastward across the Pacific, the Lapita foraged for wild food to supplement whatever horticultural food they produced.