Maia Atlantis: Ancient World Blogs

http://planet.atlantides.org/maia

Tom Elliott (tom.elliott@nyu.edu)

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November 25, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

La rive orientale de la mer Rouge, d'Aqaba aux Îles Farasan durant l'Antiquité

Conférence donnée par Laila Nehmé dans le cadre du Séminaire "Techniques et économies de la Méditerranée antique" dirigé par Jean-Pierre Brun.

Pour en savoir plus sur ce séminaire

November 21, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

L'hittitologie aujourd'hui : études sur l'Anatolie hittite et néo-hittite à l'occasion du centenaire de la naissance d'Emmanuel Laroche

Research Center for Anatolian Civilizations, Université Koç, Istiklal cadd. 181, Beyoglu/Istanbul

Colloque organisé par Alice Mouton et l'Institut Français d'études anatoliennes (IFEA)

Ces rencontres se tiendront à l'occasion du centenaire de la naissance d'Emmanuel Laroche

- Consulter le programme

Contact

October 16, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

L'argent des dieux

Colloque organisé par Julie Masquelier-Loorius, Jonathan Cornillon et Jean-Marie Salamito

Les rapports entre les religions et l'argent sont loin de se limiter aux discours que développent souvent les premières en matière de régulation éthique des activités lucratives et d'usage des richesses. Toute vie religieuse implique – à des échelles diverses, mais inévitablement – une dimension économique. Il faut des biens matériels pour les gestes du culte, l'offrande de sacrifices, la fabrication d'objets ou d'images, la construction et l'entretien de sanctuaires, la rétribution d'un clergé ou encore l'organisation de la solidarité communautaire. Quelles sont donc les pratiques des religions en matière d'économie ? Comment les communautés religieuses s'y prennent-elles pour créer, rassembler, gérer, utiliser et distribuer des richesses ? En quoi consiste l'impact concret de la vie religieuse sur la vie économique ? Comment les usages « religieux » de l'argent sont-ils justifiés ou critiqués à l'intérieur des différentes traditions ?

C'est à de telles questions que ce colloque répondra, en étudiant les religions qui ont marqué le monde méditerranéen depuis la plus haute Antiquité jusqu'à la fin du Moyen Âge : les divers polythéismes, le judaïsme, le christianisme, l'islam. La prise en compte d'une aire géographique cohérente permettra d'établir des comparaisons probantes entre des époques différentes et des confessions variées.

L'argent des dieux. Religions et richesses en Méditerranée dans l'Antiquité et au Moyen Âge

Organisé par Julie Masquelier-Loorius, Jonathan Cornillon et Jean-Marie Salamito

Les rapports entre les religions et l'argent sont loin de se limiter aux discours que développent souvent les premières en matière de régulation éthique des activités lucratives et d'usage des richesses. Toute vie religieuse implique – à des échelles diverses, mais inévitablement – une dimension économique. Il faut des biens matériels pour les gestes du culte, l'offrande de sacrifices, la fabrication d'objets ou d'images, la construction et l'entretien de sanctuaires, la rétribution d'un clergé ou encore l'organisation de la solidarité communautaire. Quelles sont donc les pratiques des religions en matière d'économie ? Comment les communautés religieuses s'y prennent-elles pour créer, rassembler, gérer, utiliser et distribuer des richesses ? En quoi consiste l'impact concret de la vie religieuse sur la vie économique ? Comment les usages « religieux » de l'argent sont-ils justifiés ou critiqués à l'intérieur des différentes traditions ?

C'est à de telles questions que ce colloque répondra, en étudiant les religions qui ont marqué le monde méditerranéen depuis la plus haute Antiquité jusqu'à la fin du Moyen Âge : les divers polythéismes, le judaïsme, le christianisme, l'islam. La prise en compte d'une aire géographique cohérente permettra d'établir des comparaisons probantes entre des époques différentes et des confessions variées.

Consulter le programme du colloque

avec le soutien du Labex RESMED

October 15, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

Les religions et l'argent

En parallèle du Colloque "L'argent des dieux " qui se tiendra du 16 au 18 octobre, un Café des sciences dont le thème sera : "les religions et l'argent" est organisé le 15 octobre à 18h30 à l'Espace Pierre Gilles de Gennes, 10 rue Vauquelin Paris 5e.

Les invités débattront dans un premier temps des relations établies entre les religions et l'argent de l'Antiquité jusqu'au Moyen-Âge.
Dans un deuxième temps sera abordé la place de l'économie religieuse dans les sociétés contemporaines.

Participeront à ce débat :
Julie Masquelier Loorius, épigraphiste à Orient et Méditerranée
Jean-Marie Salamito, historien à Orient et Méditerranée
Jonathan Cornillon, historien
Lionel Obadia, anthropologue à l'université Lumière Lyon2 (sous réserve)

Le débat sera filmé et diffusé en ligne ensuite sur ce site.

Avec le soutien de la Délégation CNRS Paris A

October 09, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

Corps, âmes et normes : approches cliniques, légales et religieuses du handicap

Organisé par :
Hedwige Rouillard-Bonraisin (EPHE - UMR 8167)
Maria Grazia Masetti-Rouault (EPHE - UMR 8167)
Jean-Michel Verdier (EPHE)
Christophe Lemardelé (EPHE)

- Consulter le programme

Autour du livre, "Christianisme et philosophie. Les premières confrontations (Ier-VIe siècle)"

Table ronde organisée par l'IRER. Elle portera sur le livre récemment paru de Sébastien Morlet, "Christianisme et philosophie. Les premières confrontations (Ier-VIe siècle)" (Le livre de poche, avril 2014)

La séance sera présidée par Mme Isabelle Bochet (Centre Sèvres - Institut d'études augustiniennes) et réunira Mme Marie-Odile Boulnois (EPHE) et M. Arnaud Perrot (Université Paris Sorbonne Paris-IV)

Sébastien Morlet sera présent et participera au débat qui suivra la présentation du livre.

October 04, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

La guerre et la Grèce

Sous la présidence de Michel ZINK, Secrétaire perpétuel de l'AIBL, Professeur au Collège de France, Président de la Fondation Théodore Reinach, Jacques JOUANNA et Philippe CONTAMINE, membres de l'AIBL.

Messieurs Jacques Jouanna, Jean-Claude Cheynet, Olivier Picard, membres du laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée interviendront lors de ce colloque

- Télécharger le programme

- Télécharger le bulletin d'inscription

- Pour en savoir plus

September 25, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

L'apport des Assomptionnistes français aux études byzantines : une approche critique / The Legacy of French Assumptionists for Byzantine Studies : A Critical Approach.

JPEG - 11.7 ko
La bibliothèque de Cadi-Keuï. Extrait de : Missions des Augustins de l'Assomption, N. S. n° 274, janvier-février 1925, p.70

Colloque organisé par l'Université de Bucarest et l'UMR 8167 Orient et Méditerranée Organisateurs :
- Marie-Hélène Blanchet
- Alexandru Tudorie

Téléchargez le programme et les résumés

Pour en savoir plus

September 20, 2014

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Metal Detecting nly for Research on Kentish Council Land


In Folkstone the district council has banned metal detecting on council land with immediate effect (Antony Thrower, 'Banning order limits treasure hunters as the council digs in', Folkestone Herald September 18, 2014). Recent events had
highlighted the need to have an official council position when discussing the matter with officials from these organisations and the member of the public concerned. Metal detecting on SDC owned and tenanted land (including land to which the public has a right of access) is not permitted. Any previous agreements concerning metal detecting that may have been made between the council and its tenants will also cease to have effect. Any proposal to undertake metal detecting on SDC land will only be considered where detecting is part of an appropriate programme of research.

Third Arrest in Illegal Artefact Hunting Case


A third house is being searched for dangerous munitions in the current clampdown on illegal artefact hunting in the UK (Police press release 'World War artefacts and munitions seized – Newport Pagnell, Milton Keynes',  Saturday 20 September 2014). 
Thames Valley Police is today (20/9) at the scene of a residential property in Newport Pagnell, where historic First and Second World War munitions have been located.[...] A 37-year-old man was arrested yesterday (19/9) on suspicion of theft from heritage and protected sites and was bailed today until 11 November.

Ancient Peoples

Profile Warrior Ornament c. AD 390-450 Moche Culture (Loma...



Profile Warrior Ornament

c. AD 390-450

Moche Culture (Loma Negra)

Peru

(Source: The Metropolitan Museum)

Peter Konieczny and Sandra Sadowski (History of the Ancient World)

Gladiatorial games as a means of political communication during the Roman Republic

Gladiatorial games as a means of political communication during the Roman Republic

By Philip Thomas

Fundamina, Vol.16:2 (2010)

Gladiators_from_the_Zliten_mosaic

Abstract: Limited means of communication in antiquity brought funeral games into politics. This paper argues that during the republic politicians communicated their message by way of public spectacles. The origin and development of the ludi are researched and political exploitation thereof during the republic is analysed. The use of these games for public execution of certain categories of criminals deserves attention. Literary and legal texts confirm that Roman politicians were aware of the potential of games to further their careers, with the result that their propaganda value was institutionalised during the empire.

Introduction: After the 2010 World Cup, the question may be raised how a developing country, short of skills and money, struggling to provide in the basic needs of her citizens, saw fit to afford billions on staging a major sports event. However, recent sport spectacles, for example the 1998 World Cup in France, during which president Chirac suddenly donned a soccer scarf and could not be kept out of the stadium, or not so recent sport events as the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, steer us towards the hypothesis that political leaders, irrespective of time and place or ideology, are aware of their need to court the voters in pursuit of popularity. Today communication is linked to technology, the printing press, telephones, loudhailers, radios, television, movies, or the internet, which leads to the question how – in antiquity – political candidates and established politicians marketed themselves without these tools. The answer, for the Romans, may be found in the arena.

The Romans recognised the importance of communication. This is attested by the emphasis placed on public speaking in the education of young noblemen. But, eloquence from the rostra only reached a limited number of supporters, while the required loud voice might be undone by hecklers and a hired mob. Cicero did not have a loud voice and chose the courts, but this required specialised skill, hard work and talent and had little entertainment value. This article offers the hypothesis that clever politicians found another means in public spectacles. First the origin and development of the gladiatorial games will be described and secondly the political exploitation of these games. Brief mention will also be made of the strange midday interlude, the ludi meridiani, in which certain categories of criminals were killed by animals, gladiators or each other.

Most work on the arena games in Rome focuses on the imperial period when for all practical purposes political communication had become irrelevant. This article argues that the gladiatorial shows found their origin in the republic and were very popular. They therefore became frequent and were used for the most basic of political ends, namely votes for an election. In consequence, the scope is limited to the later republic when the political dimension of the games was at its greatest. The paper does not offer moralising, sociological, psycho-analytical or anthropological explanations.

Click here to read this article from the University of Pretoria

See also Famous Gladiators of Ancient Rome

American Philological Association

Announcement: the next version of GreekKeys keyboards and fonts

During 2015 I will be working on updates to the GreekKeys keyboards and fonts. The major goals are to create modern (signed) installers and to add Linear B characters to New Athena Unicode font. In addition an effort will be made to circumvent the many obstacles that Microsoft Windows and Word for Windows create by hard-coding certain key combinations that override the keyboard design. The possibility of an iOS version of the keyboard will also be explored. The OpenType substitution features of the fonts may be revised (from liga to ccmp).

As this will be the last revision of GreekKeys that I intend to work on, I would like to satisfy as many desiderata of users as possible during this process. I encourage users to contact me in the next few months if they have any suggestions or requests, especially under the following headings:

Archaeological News on Tumblr

Ancient City Discovered in Western Greece

Michalis Chrysochoidis, the Greek Minister of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks, visited the archaeological site of Alikyrna near Missolonghi in western Greece, where an ancient city was recently unearthed during construction work for Ionia Odos.

The ancient city, located next to the construction site, sits in the area of Agios Thomas. Government officials were perplexed by the discovery of a previously-unknown city so large it stretches for many acres.

According to sources in the Greek media, the first findings suggest an ancient urban center which crosses over to the Ionia Odos construction site. Further excavations, research and mapping are expected. Read more.

American Philological Association

CFP: Flavian Campania

An International Conference in Italy (Napoli / Santa Maria Capua Vetere), September 17-20, 2015.

Organisers: Antony Augoustakis (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Claudio Buongiovanni (Università degli Studi di Napoli, Federico II), Joy Littlewood (Independent Scholar, Oxford), Arianna Sacerdoti (Seconda Università degli Studi di Napoli)

Campania occupies a prominent role in the literature of the Flavian period, as an area well-known for its fertility, spectacular villas, but also as a place of poetic activity (Statius and Silius Italicus in particular). Statius and Martial celebrate Campania in the Silvae and the Epigrams respectively, while the area is featured also in the epic poems of the period (e.g., Valerius Flaccus’ description of Vesuvius’ eruption), especially in the Punica, as the place where Hannibal spends considerable time during the Second Punic War (Liternum, Capua, Campi Phlegraei).

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Amphipolis: Your Questions, My Answers ... Part Deux

Who's buried at Amphipolis?

Yes, this was the first question not surprisingly ...

I don't know, nor do the archaeologists working there. Based on the evidence they have excavated and research in libraries, they currently believe - and on this I fully agree with them - that it was possibly started immediately before the death of Alexander, that the majority of the construction was complete within roughly a decade after his death, but final touches could have been added up to the last years of the 4th century BC.

The obvious answer is that it was most likely to have been built for Alexander, and either left empty when he was buried in Alexandria, or re-used for another Macedonian monarch - eg it could have became the tomb of Antigonus I Monophthalmus and the mausoleum of the Antigonids, for example.

I am wary of ruling anybody out, but Olympias is unlikely as she was buried near Pydna according to inscriptions, which is where she died. The fact that she was not mooted as a suggestion by the excavators is significant! She was unpopular in Macedonia, so her burial was probably arranged by her Epiriot family. These later inscriptions are discussed in a Hesperia article by Charles Edson, The Tomb of Olympias, available as a PDF here:


I would be delighted if it turned out to be a heroon-tomb of Hephaestion as that would also re-write history.

Roxanne was a leading candidate a few years ago, but the excavators no longer consider her likely.

The various admirals and other figures suggested are less likely but not impossible.

Nearchus was a candidate when it was simply thought to be a Lion Tomb without the colossal mound, but the huge size of the tomb now makes that extremely unlikely. Also, despite claims on the internet, Neartchus was born on Crete not at Amphipolis; we also have no idea when let alone where he died, as he is last attested to my knowledge in 312 BC at Gaza fighting Ptolemy.

The brothers Laomedon and Erigyius were also not important enough for such a huge tomb, and they are describes in sources as from Mytilene, where their father certainly originated. Laomedon features little during the campaigns of Alexander, but after his death according to Appian [Syrian Wars, 52]:
The first satrap of Syria was Laomedon of Mitylene, who derived his authority from Perdiccas and from Antipater, who succeeded the latter as regent. To this Laomedon, Ptolemy, the satrap of Egypt, came with a fleet and offered him a large sum of money if he would hand over Syria to him, because it was well situated for defending Egypt and for attacking Cyprus. When Laomedon refused Ptolemy seized him. Laomedon bribed his guards and escaped to Alcetas in Caria. Thus Ptolemy ruled Syria for a while, left a garrison there, and returned to Egypt.
We don't know what became of his after the coup of  Antipater. Erigyius probably died in Sogdiana, now northern Afghanistan, in 328/327 BC.

Cassander married Thessaloniki, Alexander's half-sister, and is possible but so are many others.

Philip III Arridaeus and Adea Eurydice II died / were forced to commit suicide by Olympias in 317  (see here), and they were later buried by Cassander with her mother Cynane at Vergina. See Diodorus (xix. 52) and Athenaeus (iv. 41):
And Diyllus the Athenian says, in the ninth book of his Histories, that Cassander, when returning from Boeotia after he had buried the king and queen at Aegae, and with them Cynna the mother of Eurydice, and had paid them all the other honours to which they were entitled, celebrated also a show of single combats, and four of the soldiers entered the arena on that occasion.
Cleopatra the full-sister of Alexander was given a beautiful funeral by Antigonus - who had probably been behind her murder, but since that took place at Sardes, it is likely her tomb was there too.

Leonnatus, a relative of Alexander's who had planned to marry Cleopatra in order to reinforce his claim to the throne of Macedon is possible but unlikely - although the Lion would have made a nice pun on his name.

Several of the leading candidates can be excluded, but who the body was is not yet certain.

What we learn from the caryatids regarding dating of the tomb?

Nothing that goes against the date already suggested by the excavators. As I pointed out in the last post, they in no way indicate an Augustan date. Also since there are many copies and variants of the Tralles-Cherchel caryatid type from the Hellenistic period onwards, one can argue that they copied a famous lost original, and Amphipolis is the best candidate for having been that original.

Could you please provide your timeline of events regarding: Construction of the tomb, it being used or re-used, its backfilling and the construction of the sealing walls. Not so much in terms of accurate dating, but more in terms of sequence of events: is the backfilling contemporary to the construction? Is the sealing wall contemporary to the back-filling etc. ?

This is my current working theory, but please not that both the ideas of the archaeologists at Amphipolis and mine have changed as new evidence is excavated:

It was started before or soon after the death of Alexander in 323 BC, probably as his tomb, possibly as his deified friend Hephaestion.

It was left empty when Ptolemy took his body to Egypt, possibly in the hope that they would bring him "home" to be buried there.

It was probably finished by the death of Antigonus I Monophthalmus in 301 BC.

It may have been left empty and served as a cult centre, or it may have been used by a successor once it became clear that Alexander's body was not coming back - for example once his new tomb the Sema or Soma was built in Alexandria, probably by Ptolemy II Philadelphus; see PhDiva: Alexander's Tomb(s) in Egypt


The soil back-fill and the walls that sealed each chamber were almost certainly contemporary; soil was probably used instead of concrete as it meant the tomb could be sealed and the roof supported, but not necessarily lost as would be the case with Roman concrete. The walls would have been necessary to hold in the soil, to stop it pouring out. I assume that there are small finds within the soil which will help date this - bits of pottery, dropped coins, etc - but I am not aware of them.

My guess is that the architecture was not strong enough to support the mound, and that after an earthquake it began to cave in, so the soil was used to support the structure.

The destruction of the superstructure was initially thought to be Byzantine iconoclasm, then coins were found in this destruction layer which were presented at the conference, and which I am pretty sure put this in the early 3rd century AD. So the possibility was discussed that the superstructure was used to dredge swamp land by the river to combat malaria, but this was also set aside.

I am asking because through informal statements made by Ms. Peristeri it has been implied that the back-filling and the sealing walls were protective measures against the looting of the tomb (and therefore contemporary to its construction?)

I do not think Prof Peristeri was trying to suggest that the sealing was contemporary to the construction. She is under a lot of pressure, and perhaps her words were misinterpreted?

It is possible that the tomb was filled to stop it collapsing further. And that soon after the superstructure was removed in order to lessen the weight bearing down on it, and that the plan had been to re-open it but if so this plan was abandoned.

I would like to draw a parallel to one early suggestion on how to construct a dome over the cathedral in Florence. The art of building domes had been forgotten, and someone suggested filling the whole building with soil, and building the dome over that. He thought that if one buried cheese in the soil, the mice would then moved all the earth out for them ... it didn't work out!

soil and diaphragm walls are later from the grave?, from the construction of the grave not seem to be place from the basic architect 

Yes, see above.

Please note that just as so many Richard Rogers buildings today seem to have the odd engineering issue, so did ancient ones ...

Vitruvius [II.2.8] discusses open air temples:
8. The HYPÆTHROS is decastylos, in the pronaos and posticum. In other respects it is similar to the dipteros, except that in the inside it has two stories of columns all round, at some distance from the walls, after the manner of the peristylia of porticos. The middle of the interior part of the temple is open to the sky, and it is entered by two doors, one in front and the other in the rear. Of this sort there is no example at Rome, there is, however, an octastyle specimen of it at Athens, the temple of Jupiter Olympius.
 ... fails to mention that the Olympieion in Athens was unroofed because it was never finished!

Also, there is a Roman engineer in Algeria who tried to build a tunnel through a mountain by starting at both ends and meeting in the middle. The plan didn't quite works out ... (see Roman builder ... whoops).

Hi, is it the case much more work went into the circular wall than the tomb itself? I mean, it's a wall of huge radius with tons of marble

That's a very interesting question, and I don't know the answer. We have enough ancient building accounts preserved to know that sometimes the long wooden beams needed for the roof could cost more than marble, as they needed to be imported from the Levant. At Delphi, we know that it cost more to bring the marble from the port to the sanctuary by road than it cost to bring the marble by ship to the port. For more on this I highly recommend looking up the work of Alison Burford, which are quite old but very good.

Yes it is harder to cut a circular edge on a block than a straight one. More than that, I cannot say.

Obviously limits to sensible speculation until it's been fully excavated, but are there parallels from elsewhere, whether Macedonia itself or the wider Hellenistic world, for the steps down and then the two (?) antechambers which require backfilling to deny access?

The steep steps down I find very unusual and don't know of parallels, and the only thing that springs to mind - other than Egyptian tombs - is the similarity of descending to, for example Hades, in Mystery Cults, the two not being mutually exclusive.

Macedonian tombs, for example at Vergina Tomb II, were covered over soon after the burial. This one does not seem to have been, and was stone rather than stucco, making it very unusual. The back-filling as I discussed in the last post, is probably later.

I have read on the web that one commentator is convinced that the tomb is Alexander's. He says that it took two years to complete it and then the body was brought from the East. He says that the body in Alexandra was just a mummy that Ptolemy grabbed. Basically he says the ancient accounts aren't true and are full of 'tales'. How should we regard the ancient texts that we rely on that relate to Alexander's burial site? I suppose we shall soon find out if this tomb changes history. If it is Alexander's that would create a huge public sensation. That would be GREAT to get the public - and kids - talking about history and archaeology.

I think anything that interests people in archaeology and history is wonderful but ... the overwhelming majority of ancient sources agree that Alexander's body remained in Alexandria through into the Byzantine period.

There was still a great deal of interest in Alexander during the Byzantine period - for example this late 5th century AD head was excavated at Ostia (and stolen from the museum, so if you find it, let me know) - but if his body was moved from Alexandria before the Arab conquest, it is very unlikely to have been put into the tomb at Amphipolis, and would probably have been taken to Constantinople.


Also, thank you so much for your wonderful blog - it's a great resource and a wonderful gift to us amateurs and enthusiasts.

You're welcome! But don't forget that the archaeologists at Amphipolis are the ones doing all the hard work!

One last question - do you expect the caryatids to be fully painted?

The Tralles-Cherchel figure from Tralles and now in Istanbul still has traces of paint, so they probably were painted originally. The Greeks tended to paint sculpture and architecture, although it became less fashionable to do so in the Roman period.

The Svestari tomb caryatids also still have a lot of paint, as the tomb was sealed but not filled with soil.



My question is about the caryatid’s face. The nose and nostrils seem to be uncommonly broad compared to those in Hellenistic sculpture. I have looked at many hellenistic statues, noses are narrow at the base. Also the caryatid’s eyes have a stretch and the mouth looks fuller. Is there a foreign influence here?

That's a very interesting question. Only one caryatid preserves the face, but she is missing her nose, so that all that's left is the 'shadow' ... and where the noise joins the face is always wider than the tip.

But looking at other Caryatids of this type - and this is the head of the Tralles-Cherchel type from Hadrianic Athens - I don't find the nose unusually wide. Ancient Greek women did not have access to American plastic surgeons, so they didn't have those tiny little button noses!

If you're asking if she could be African, I am wary of making statements about race based on a damaged sculpture ...

But I discussed the portrait of Septimius Severus, an emperor who was born in Roman north Africa here - he may be shown darker than his wife because his skin was darker, or because it was the convention to depict men as darker than women.








I'll answer more questions tomorrow ...

BiblePlaces Blog

Weekend Roundup

Joseph Patrich and Benny Arubas offer four reasons against identifying the mausoleum discovered at the Herodium with the tomb of Herod. Unfortunately, they do not suggest an alternative identification.

Some IAA photos of the Byzantine monastery uncovered near Beth Shemesh are available for download.

The oldest known Jewish prayer book just went on display at the Bible Lands Museum in Jerusalem.

3 Sea of Galilee Sites You’ll Pass But May Not See. Before you click, see if you can guess the three.

Ferrell Jenkins looks at two outstanding architectural remains in the Pergamum Museum in Berlin: the Miletus Market Gate and the Altar of Zeus.

Leon Mauldin has two illustrated posts about the two Temple boundary inscriptions: the complete one on display in Istanbul and the fragment in the Israel Museum.

The Baptist Press runs a story on the Bronze Age water system of Gezer.

Wheaton’s Archaeology Lecture Series 2014-2015 has two lectures remaining.

An electronic edition of supplementary volume of The New Encyclopedia of Archaeological Excavations in the Holy Land is now available to all members of the BAS Library.

Subscriptions are now available to the Loeb Classical Library, but the prices aren’t cheap and you must inquire by email.

In stock on Monday: the first volume of the Dictionary of Daily Life in Biblical and Post-Biblical Antiquity, edited by Edwin M. Yamauchi and Marvin R. Wilson ($20).

HT: Joseph Lauer

3

Byzantine monastery near Beth Shemesh
Photo by Griffin Aerial Photography Company, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

The Case of the Severed Ear

I’ve been meaning for a while to blog about the story in the Gospel tradition, in which one of Jesus’ followers slices off the ear of the high priest’s servant in the garden of Gethsemane (Mark 14:47  and parallels). Larry Behrendt had two posts on the subject back in August, which I had meant to draw attention to before now. The first pointed out oddities in the story – for instance, Peter attacks a presumably unarmed slave, and yet the response of the arresting party does not involve the use of a sword against him. The second post considers interpretative options, and suggests that the most plausible explanation is that the incident never happened.

I’m not sure I agree – the difficulties are real, to be sure, but it is hard to imagine Christians, eager to depict themselves and their leader as not violent revolutionaries, making this incident up. Why would they have done so? Is it not more likely that the incident reflects something that actually happened, and the oddities of the story reflect an attempt to reinterpret the event?

It has long seemed to me that this incident might have had a significant impact on the way things unfolded for Jesus. If the arresting party was hoping to reason with Jesus and get him to avoid causing a stir during the feast that might draw in Roman troops, or if they were hoping at worst to lock him away until after Passover, they may well have been trying to avoid an eruption of violence, even when provoked. Moreover, for all we know, they may have subdued, or even killed, the person who sliced off the ear (assuming it wasn’t Peter), after which Jesus prevented his followers from doing anything further. Perhaps none or very few of the rest of them were armed. And perhaps this incident was a major reason why the authorities persecuted the subsequent Christian movement, more than anything they believed about Jesus.

Being interested in this subject, I was delighted to learn yesterday that Dale Martin’s work on it has been highlighted in Newsweek (HT Chris Keith). I look forward to reading the journal article mentioned there. Take a look at what he has to say, and what other scholars have said in response.

What do you think about the story? Did someone slice off the ear of the high priest’s servant in the Garden of Gethsemane? Why would someone invent it, if you think it was invented? And if there is a real incident in the background, what might be left unsaid in, or covered up by, the story as told in the Gospels?

sliced ear

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

H.V.Morton on Gregory the Great and the deserted Palatine

This morning I read these words:

I descended the noble steps [from the church of St Gregory on the Caelian hill].  Every day of his life, I reflected, St Gregory while in Rome, and before he went to live at the Lateran Palace as Pope, must have seen the Colosseum; a few paces would take him past the Circus Maximus, already weed-grown and deserted, above which rose the imperial palaces, unoccupied for centuries but still capable of housing a stray Exarch from Ravenna.  The last time they received an emperor was twenty-five years after Gregory’s death, in 629, when Heraclius visited Rome and was invested with the diadem in the throne room on the Palatine.  What a ghostly moment that must have been; for the middle ages were ready to be born.

These words are from H.V. Morton, A Traveller in Rome, published in 1957.[1]

I know nothing of that visit to Rome by Heraclius, I must say, but that portrait in words moves me to find out.  Which, in a way, says that the book is doing its job!

I’m reading the book because it’s a gentle, restful book to read.  For those unfamiliar with them, Morton’s books are a mixture of personal observation and material rewritten from books such as the popularisations of Lanciani, and are perfectly targeted at the educated but non-specialist reader.   They are uneven; but the best are very good indeed.

But it is a wistful experience, reading Morton’s Through Lands of the Bible, where he travels through Palestine and Iraq in the 1930’s.  It is a portrait of a peaceful, quiet world.  Under the rule of the honest, efficient colonial powers, the region knew the first enlightened, progressive, civilised government that it had ever had.

How sad that it was also the last.  I am by no means anti-American, but America has been the dominant power in the region since WW2, and the policies pursued by its ruling class, often well-intentioned but invariably counter-productive, have condemned its inhabitants to ceaseless, pointless strife, poverty and misery.

Let us take up the books written in better days, and dream of a better world than our own.

UPDATE: Later in the book Morton refers to a visit by Constans II to stay in the Palatine, some 20 years later than Heraclius.  I have a feeling that his books were serialized, which may explain how episodic they sometimes can be; and mistakes like this!

  1. [1] By Methuen; In the 1984 paperback reprint this is p.208

Managing the photocopies!

Alright.  Confess.  Is there anyone who does NOT have a large pile of photocopies of articles, book excerpts, and even complete books, somewhere in their house or study area?  No?  I thought not. Dratted nuisance, aren’t they?

Clearing the decks!

Clearing the decks!

Years ago I used to file them, in hanging folders in filing cabinets.  This week I have been emptying a drawer of such copies.  Most of these were on A3 paper, so very hard to scan; but I simply drew a trimmer down the middle and scanned them in anyway.  And then, most importantly, I threw away the paper.  And the hangers.

At this moment I am going through a pile of off-prints, and guillotining the spines and shoving them through my document scanner.  They scan beautifully.  And … I am throwing the paper away.  The PDFs that I get from the scanner I make searchable, and then, for once, I can use them.

It’s a bit nostalgic, in a way.  I’m finding papers that I ordered in 2001, via my local library.  This was before PDFs existed.  The library charged a substantial sum per paper, and it arrived in weeks, not days.  In those days it was the only available method to obtain a copy of anything.  Now … we have electronic methods.  It’s not so long ago, and yet it’s a different world.

Most of the papers relate to my interest in Tertullian.  I’m scanning in a bunch of copies of the Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea as I type – the key bibliography for Latin ante-Nicene patristics.  They will be far easier to search in PDF form!

Also found were a bunch of papers by Canadian academic James Carley, about the English antiquary John Leland.  Leland lived in the times of Henry VIII, when the monasteries were being suppressed, and inspected their libraries.  Many volumes from English monasteries went overseas; most were destroyed.  A post on his work might not go amiss, perhaps.

Meanwhile, I need to scan some more stuff and declutter!  It’s a good task for a rainy day.

Have you purged your filing cabinet lately?

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Perseus: Announcing the Arethusa Annotation Framework

Announcing the Arethusa Annotation Framework
Developers Gernot Höflechner, Robert Lichtensteiner and Christof Sirk, in collaboration with the Perseus Digital Library at Tufts (via the Libraries and the Transformation of the Humanities and Perseids projects) and the University of Leipzig’s Open Philology Project, have released Arethusa, a framework for linguistic annotation and curation. Arethusa was inspired by and extends the goals of the Alpheios Project, to provide a highly configurable, language-independent, extensible infrastructure for close-reading, annotation, curation and exploration of open-access digitized texts. While the initial release highlights support for morpho-syntactic annotation, Arethusa is designed to allow users to switch seamlessly between a variety of annotation and close-reading activities, facilitating the creation of sharable, reusable linguistic data in collaborative research and pedagogical environments.
grid
Arethusa is built on the angular.js javascript web application framework and provides a back-end independent infrastructure for accessing texts, annotations and linguistic services from a variety of sources. Extensibility is a guiding design goal — Arethusa includes tools for automatic generation of skeleton code for new features as plugins; detailed development guides are also currently in progress. We hope others will be able to reuse and build upon the platform to add support for other annotation types, languages and back-end repositories and workflow engines.
Arethusa is already deployed as a component of the Perseids platform, where it provides an annotation interface for morpho-syntactic analyses and will soon also act as a broker between the Perseids back-end (the Son of SUDA Online application) and various other front-end annotating and editing activities, including translation alignments, entity identification and text editing.
Screencasts are available that show how the Arethusa application can be used for syntactic diagram (treebank) and morphological analysis annotations on Perseids. Additional demos and slides will be made available soon which highlight additional features along with the architecture and design.
This project has been made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (Award LG0611032611), the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the European Social Fund. We also are indebted to Robert Gorman and Vanessa Gorman of the University of Nebrask and Giuseppe G. A. Celano of the University of Leipzig for their invaluable contributions to the design and testing of the platform.

James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

Live Long and Prosper

Live Long and Prosper Jesus

Via Episcopal Church Memes on Facebook.

Peter Tompa (Cultural Property Observer)

Commerce Not Such a Bad Thing?

CPO remembers that not so long ago AIA members regularly denounced "commercial interests" at every CPAC meeting.  So, its refreshing to see that the AIA now accepts advertising on its website and that the Saint Louis Chapter is even auctioning off some Egyptian artifacts long in its possession.

Perhaps commercial interests are not so bad after all.

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Focus on UK Metal Detecting: "Loathsome"


heritageaction writes that after seventeen million pounds of expensive outreach to them, in Bonkers Britain conservation is treated by artefact hunters as “gangrenous propagandist claptrap”. UK artefact hunters are apparently fearful that an upcoming detecting sitcom will "belittle" what they do and portray their hobby as "dysfunctional", yet are quite oblivious to the fact that time after time, ambassadors for their own community do more than enough to show themselves in the worst possible light:
just look what detectorists have said about us in the last 2 weeks: "Sad and lonely Luddites.... second-rate, down-market, repugnant, malicious, ignorant, hare-brained nutters and psychos.... wilfully ill-informed numpties..... ill-mannered specimens of the human race, guilty of gangrenous propogandist claptrap.... like predatory homosexuals..... loathsome, vocal, single-issue culture weirdo’s using cheap drugs.... the kind of souls who pull wings off flies...." So .... if you dig stuff up for your own benefit you expect (and generally get) kid glove treatment but if you simply advocate legal regulation of the activity for the public benefit you'll be attacked in the crudest fashion imaginable!

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Quick Answers About Amphipolis ...

Thank you all for your many interesting questions about Amphipolis, and for the information people have been kind enough to email me. I am thrilled people around the world, not just in Greece, are so excited and enthusiastic about the Lion Tomb at Amphipolis, and I'll start with some of the images people have created - please do add credits in the comments, as I don't have them for all the images, partly as I am sticking to the official press releases.

For some questions I have to paraphrase my fictional colleague Lara Croft, and answer "I cold tell you, but then I'd have to kill you ..."

Just as the Luna Temple built off Santorini by Alexander the Great is fictional ... so, I'm afraid, are all claims Alexander was buried at Amphipolis.

Based on what I know, I think it could well have been started by him and finished by the Antigonids; they could well have left it empty, assuming that they would 'soon' bring his body back from Alexandria ... but they never did. Then it would have been either re-used for a subsequent ruler's burial or possibly kept as a cenotaph / heroon to his cult, possibly jointly with Hephaestion, as they were sometimes honoured jointly as dioscouroi. 


Are there more chambers? These diagrams are very useful for showing that the three chambers so far identified don't go very far into the mound, suggesting that there were. It is very unlikely that there was a chamber at the centre of the mound, since that was the support weight for the lion, but since the architect made some structural mistakes, anything is possible.

If there are only three chambers, since these are close to the edge of the mound, the weight they carry is lighter and so they should not have the structural issues we are seeing. I suspect that there are more chambers, in worse condition, and that there is a sort of domino effect, with the badly damaged inner chambers pushing outwards onto the third and second ones ...

People have asked about earthquakes. This damage could have been caused by an earthquake, but the removal of the superstructure was deliberate - we know that as the parts of the lion and the base were found some distance away, by the river, and the reason they were not originally associated with the mound was because of this.

A good example of archaeologists identifying earthquake damage was in the original excavations of the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus - one side of the building went splat in an earthquake, and by identifying where on the ground the sculptures were found, Geoffrey Waywell was able to project backwards and identify where on the building they would originally have been.

These are based on the official reconstruction by the archaeologists presented at the Thessaloniki conference - see photo below (the snap was taken at an angle, so the lion was not leaning to the right!).


Again this not Ministry of Culture diagram shows how little under the mound the chambers found go.







The very steep steps down are highly unusual, and I am surprised they have not attracted more comment as there are few parallels.

The gap between the spinx gate and the steps was rather narrow, and then we have to remember that there was a later wall added.




The floor actually looks like this, and has a pattern that echoes the masonry lining the walls:


Again, this is the official reconstruction by the archaeologists:


Yes the tomb is huge, as several people have pointed out. The measurements people keep using for the Mausoleum of Hadrian are of it as it survives as the Castel Sant'Angelo; the original complex was slightly bigger, and closer in size to the Mausoleum of Augustus ... but still tiny compared to Amphipolis!

Although there are almost a dozen earlier more-or-less round buildings, the perfect circle is associated with Dinocrates by the archaeologists working there.

I can't discuss any geo-phys surveys, but I am not expecting gold and treasure. We hopefully will find some things left behind, but the fact that finds have not been announced from the back-fill suggests that they were probably removed when the tomb became structurally unsafe.

Below is a plan of the mound over Tomb II at Vergina. There are a variety of interpretations of who was buried there, but in my opinion Philip II is the best candidate. You can see the plan of a small shrine or naiskos to the right, which may have been a cult shrine.

Vergina was sacked by the troops of Pyrrhus in one of the many wars fought by the successors of Alexander, and the mound seems to post-date this sack since it encompasses several tombs, unlike Amphipolis where the mound is part of the original structure. Various finds in the mound at Vergina come from the funerary pyre, suggesting that there had been a smaller mound before.


This is the Lion as it was reconstructed, using blocks found by the river. The archaeologists have now identified more blocks, to fill in the reconstructed gaps.

The destruction of the Lion and superstructure was not in an earthquake, nor does it seem to be Christian iconoclasm as previously thought. The archaeologists shifted the date downwards into the Roman period, based on small finds such as dated coins found in this destruction layer.

Why someone with a great deal of power would put so much effort into destroying and concealing the tomb is very puzzling. It seems to have been an officially sanctioned project, since although mobs could destroy buildings it is very unlikely that a mob moved the blocks such a great distance.

The destruction could be key to identifying who was buried at Amphipolis. If it was someone like Hephaestion, then it may have been because an emperor did not approve of him? Or it could be linked to a megalomaniac such as Caracalla - perhaps he wanted the only tomb linked to his beloved Alexander to be in Alexandria? There are as many possible answers to that one as there are theories!

Yes, the way the margins are drafted on the masonry in the entrance is quite unusual, but not without parallels - and the whole point of exceptional and important buildings is that they often have unusual architectural features ... that's what makes them special. For example the carved column drums at Ephesus (and I hope no one is planning to re-date that to the Roman period).


There are rosettes carved at Amphipolis, but these are not, to the best of my knowledge, a specifically royal symbol, and they can be found on the funerary stele of ordinary ancient Greeks.


As I've pointed out before, one could see structural issues starting with the Caryatids - the cracks in the lintel above, the face which sheered off and was found in the back-fill.

As I've said before, the archaeologists working at Amphipolis are very good. I've also pointed out that any semi-competent archaeologist could make the observations I'm making. I am competent, but unfortunately not all archaeologists are.

One has re-dated the tomb to Augustus' day on the basis that Caryatids are an Augustan symbol ... as you can all see in this photo of the Caryatids he used in the Forum of Augustus, Augustus liked copies of the Erechtheion Caryatids which were of a completely different type from those found at Amphipolis ...

And even if Amphipolis had had Caryatids that copied the columns carved as Korai from the Erechtheion - which it does not - this would not be grounds for re-dating it to the Roman period. The Heroon of Pericles of Limyra, a local dynast dated to the 4th century BC, also had strange slightly archaising copies of the Erechtheion Korai ... For more on Limyra, see here.

The Ionic door frame on the exterior of the third chamber is unusual, but then so is so much of the Amphipolis tomb. It slightly echoes Egyptian Mastaba Doors, although I am wary of seeing too much into that, or seeing it as the influence of Alexander's conquest of Egypt let alone any other links.

The interior lintel of the third chamber is badly cracked, and shows how precarious the structure of the tomb is. This makes it very dangerous for archaeologists, and is why they are waiting for engineers to shore it up.

The Ionic pilaster capitals from the front entrance are interesting. As on many other buildings, they were painted. I am wary of making too many claims, but the exterior (left) seems more weathered than the interior face (below), suggesting that this part of the tomb was exposed to the elements, and that wind and rain faded some of the paintwork.


The red paint on the walls of the third chamber is interesting. I will simply for now point out that Tyrian Purple, the colour associated with royalty, is also sometimes called Tyrian Red as the colour produced by the Murex is quite a reddish-purple ...

I have to go walk the dog and run errands, but I'll try to do another post later today answering the many other good questions people have asked. Meanwhile I highly recommend looking at the inter-active floor plan of the excavations at The Amphipolis Tomb web site here.

Mary Beard (A Don's Life)

Laugh-in

IMG_4067

I have got a bit fed up with tradtional academic "conferences". Don't get me wrong, some conferences can be really mind-changing, the papers excellent, the networking fun, the resulting publication a (prompt) milestone. I think I am fed up with the default assumption that conferences are a necessary good.  Let's be honest, there are some when the papers are not on the topic they are supposed to be (someone's bottom drawer), when they go on too long (so whoops no time for any questions, very sorry, we must press on). Then there is the inevitable publication (often exploiting some poor graduate student), which appears years after the event, and missing some of the best papers (which had, oh dear, been already promised elsewhere).

I'm not saying this because I am a solitary soul who doesnt want to talk to other scholars in the field. Far from it. But I do like to talk in an open ended way, really about the topic concerned, where people are really frank, and nobody is bothered about what the paper will look like when it's in the "conference volume".

A few years ago I managed to get some funding together to run a day's workshop on the Roman Triumph. I had just published a book on the triumph, as had a number of other people (in different countries and languages); and there were even more who had just written articles. We had a nice dinner, then sat down the next day and went through all the things we had agreed and disagrred about, and what we thought the remaining problems were. There were no papers, just discussion (on the basis of each others' work -- which we had more or less read).

The bottom line was: we are all going to be reading each other's work, so wouldn't it be more productive to tell each other what we think face to face, and discuss -- rather then merely pen a waspish (or otherwise) review. It turned out to be one of the most rewarding academic days I had ever spent.

The trouble is, it is extremely hard to raise money for this kind of thing from any of the usual sources. Try saying to the  British Academy that "there are no plans for publication". More than that, try telling them that "we are not even going to have any papers that could be published". Dream on for your conference grant. It's all part of the current assumption that direct publication is the only form "knowledge transfer" . . . when in fact what I said and wrote about the triumph after our workshop was significantly different from what I had said before (so isn't that "knowledge transfer" too?)

Anyway, to get to the point: I was lucky enough to get generous funding from a generous donor to host a similar event about ancient and modern laughter (on which there has been a flurry of recent work). It was the same format: we had an open seminar given by Kristina Milnor on Thursday late afternoon (so people who were not laughter types could come and enjoy an event), then a nice dinner on Thursday for the main participants (hosted by Professor Schofield above), and then a day's discussion with about 20 of us on the Friday.

We were partly ancient laughers (inc Stephen Halliwell and Michael Silk and  Catherine Conybeare) and partly modern laughers (inc Matthew Bevis). And we debated a whole range of things from questions of theory (what IS it to theorise laughter? how totalising does any theory aim to be?) to questions of control (why do we treat laughter as uncontroolable, when it usually isnt) to definitions of comedy and issues of gender (how is laughter a marker of gender difference).

Once again, it has really helped me to think and (I am sure) write diffeently about laughter. And despite our general view that laughter is uncontrollable, there was one outburst of (almost) uncontrollable laughter.

It is I fear rare for academic laughter to be joyous and funny, but this one was.

 

 

 

Jim Davila (Paleojudaica.com)

Strassman, DMT and the Soul of Prophecy

IN THE (E-)MAIL:
DMT and the Soul of Prophecy
A New Science of Spiritual Revelation in the Hebrew Bible


By (author) Rick Strassman, M.D.

ISBN-13: 978-1-59477-342-6
ISBN: 1-59477-342-4
Quality Paperback — 9/18/14
Page Count: 352; 6.00 (width) x 9.00 (height)
Imprint: Park Street Press

Availability: Usually ships within 1-2 business days.
Price: $19.95
An advance electronic copy kindly sent me by the author. Looks like the publisher is just beginning to ship. Dr Strassman is the last researcher in the U.S.A. (in the 1990s) to be permitted by the U.S. Government to undertake clinical research on an hallucinogenic drug - DMT (N,N-dimethyltryptamine). He and I have been in informal dialogue for some years about his research (especially in his earlier book, DMT: The Spirit Molecule) and my research on visionary practice and experience in ancient Judaism. I haven't seen anything in advance from his new book, so it will be interesting to see what he has to say.

Adrian Murdoch (Bread and Circuses)

Plebs - Gladiators and Orgies

A lovely profile in the Guardian this morning of Plebs, the very, very funny sitcom set in Ancient Rome, which for viewers in the UK, starts again on Monday: As with those shows, you might even accidentally learn something about...

Perseus Digital Library Updates

The Digital Loeb Classical Library, Open Scholarship, and a Global Society

This piece was first published in February 2014 as an open Google doc on the Digital Loeb Classical Library, Open Scholarship, and a Global Society. Another piece is in preparation and will appear on the blog for the Open Philology Project at Leipzig.

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

ADCAEA members now have secret Guidelines



"The Association of Dealers and Collectors of Ancient
and Ethnographic Art (ADCAEA) is an organization dedicated
to providing resources, education, networking and support to advance
the responsible and legal trading and collecting of ancient and ethnographic art"
.
"All ADCAEA members subscribe to and maintain the following code of conduct: [...] 10. All members shall promote awareness and understanding of collecting principals (sic!) through open communication with allied collectors and the public". 
Yeah, right, which is why their guidelines for conducting due diligence are only visible by subscribers: us9.campaign-archive1.com ("campaign"?). It seems not to have been put out for consultation, and  allied collectors and members of the public are not allowed to see what they propose without paying.

Do all four ADCAEA dealers apply these guidelines to every single of their purchases, including the one that very frequently turns up in my search results by people who obviously see some sort of reason to have serious doubts about him or her? And the anonymous one from the UK? It strikes me that if you cannot put your name to a statement, that statement is not worth very much.

Scattered Archives, Institutional Untrustworthyness: Why Partage Was Never a Good Idea


With regard to the upcoming Bonhams sale of antiquities currently in the care of the AIA (the so-called Treasure of Harageh* Lot 160), Douglas Boin and T Finan (both professors in the Department of History at St. Louis University) have written a hard-hitting article in the St Louis Post-Despach "Egyptian Artifacts Should Be Returned Not Auctioned Off":

Monica Hanna, an Egyptian archaeologist who has worked tirelessly to protect and retrieve Egypt’s cultural heritage in recent years, said, “If the St. Louis Society wants to divest themselves of their Egyptian artifacts, I have no doubt that Egypt would gladly offer to take them back.” We asked the leadership of the St. Louis Society to explain their reasons for the sale, including how it plans to use the proceeds, but did not receive a response. The board of directors is scheduled to meet Saturday. Members of the St. Louis archaeological community are justly outraged that they weren’t consulted about the society’s decision. [...] Why is the St. Louis society proceeding in the face of so much local and national opposition? It can’t be for lack of display space in the city. We’re confident that many St Louis institutions would gladly work with the society to house the artifacts, if not to adequately present the storied history of these items to a wider public. The society should halt the sale of its “treasure” immediately.
but it turns out that this is not an isolated case. Boin notes Lot 162, An Egyptian alabaster-travertine headrest of the First Intermediate Period was also excavated at the site, from half-way up a shaft in Cemetery E. Yet a further item flogged off by the AIA in St Louis has come back on the market. Boin mentions an inscribed block from a wall in an inner room of Akhenaten's River Temple at Tell Amarna, excavated during the 1922 season of the Egyptian Exploration Society under the direction of Sir Leonard Woolley then in the AIA collections, received from the Egyptian Exploration Society in the 1920s, but acquired in the early 1970s by the 'Claude Harkins Collection' (Kansas City, Missouri, USA) and recently back on sale as Lot 150 in Bonham's April 2014 Auction 21926.
* A misdescription they are grave goods excavated in 1913-14 by the British School of Archaeology in Egypt from Tomb 124 at Harageh, the Fayum, near Lahun.

Laura Gibbs (Bestiaria Latina Blog)

Latin Proverbs and Fables Round-Up: September 20

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): ante diem duodecimum Kalendas Octobres.

MYTHS and LEGENDS: The art image for today's legend shows Pandora; 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: Meliora speranda (English: Better things can be hoped for).

3-WORD PROVERBS: Today's 3-word verb-less proverb is Fortuna imperatrix mundi (English: Luck is the ruler of the world)

AUDIO PROVERBS: Today's audio Latin proverb is Procul a Iove, procul a fulmine (English: Far from Jupiter, far from his thunderbolt). 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: Incertus animus dimidium est sapientiae (English: A mind that doubts is halfway to wisdom).

ERASMUS' ANIMALS: Today's animal proverb from Erasmus is Multi qui boves stimulent, pauci aratores (English: Many are those who drive the oxen, but few are the real ploughmen; from Adagia 1.7.9).

BREVISSIMA: The distich poster for today is Iudex Sibi. Click here for a full-sized view.


And here are today's proverbial LOLcats:



TODAY'S FABLES:

FABULAE FACILES: The fable from the Fabulae Faciles widget is Vulpes et Mulieres, a funny little story about a fox who exposes the women's hypocrisy (this fable has a vocabulary list).

MILLE FABULAE: The fable from the Mille Fabulae et Una widget is Arbores et Homo, the story of the trees who were their own worst enemy.

Arbores et Securis

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: Ἀετὸν ἵπτασθαι διδάσκεις. Aquilam volare doces. You are teaching an eagle to fly.

Ancient Art

“When his majesty saw them, he was enraged against them,...





When his majesty saw them, he was enraged against them, like his father, Montu, lord of Thebes. He seized the adornments of battle, and arrayed himself in his coat of mail […] His majesty was like Sutekh, the great in strength, smiting and slaying among them; his majesty hurled them headlong, one upon another into the water of the Orontes.”

The Battle of Kadesh against the Hittites. The shown scene is from the second court of the Ramesseum, the Egyptian mortuary temple of Pharaoh Ramesses II, dating to Dynasty 19.

In this particular detail we can observe Hittite troops reaching out to their defeated comrades, who are drowning in the river Orontes.

Quoted at the start of the post is part of the Egyptian account of the Battle of Kadesh, translated by James Henry Breasted (Ancient Records of Egypt: Historical Documents. Chicago: 1906, III:136-147).

Photos taken by kairoinfo4u.

September 19, 2014

Shawn Graham (Electric Archaeology)

Open notebooks part III

Do my bidding my robots!

Do my bidding my robots!

I’ve sussed the Scrivener syncing issue by moving the process of converting out of the syncing folder (remember, not the actual project folder, but the ‘sync to external folder’). I then have created four automator applications to push my stuff to github in lovely markdown. Another thing I’ve learned today: when writing in Scrivener, just keep your formatting simple. Don’t use markdown syntax within Scrivener or your stuff on github will end up looking like this \##second-heading. I mean, it’s still legible, but not as legible as we’d like.

So – I have four robots. I write in Scrivener, keep my notes, close the session, whereupon it syncs rtf to the ‘external folder’ (in this case, my dropbox folder for this purpose; again, not the actual scrivener project folder).

  1. I hit robot 1 on my desktop. Right now, this is called ‘abm-project-move-to-conversion-folder’. When I have a new project, I just open this application in Automator, and change the source directory to that project’s Scrivener external syncing folder. It grabs everything out of that folder, and copies it into a ‘conversion-folder’ that lives on my machine.
  2. I hit robot 2, ‘convert-rtf-to-md’, which opens ‘conversion-folder’ and turns everything it finds into markdown. The conversion scripts live in the ‘conversion-folder'; the things to be converted live in a subfolder, conversion-folder/draft
  3. I hit robot 3, ‘push-converted-files-to-github-repo’. This grabs just the markdown files, and copies them into my local github repository for the project. When I have a new project, I’d have to change this application to point to the new folder. This also overwrites anything with the same file name.
  4. I hit robot 4, ‘clean-conversion-folder’ which moves everything (rtfs, mds,) to the trash. This is necessary because if not, then I can end up with duplicates of files I haven’t actually modified getting through my pipeline onto my github page. (If you look at some of my experiments on github, you’ll see the same card a number of times with 1…2…3…4 versions).

Maybe it’s possible to create a meta-automator that strings those four robots into 1. I’ll try that someday.
[pause]
Ok, so of course, I tried stringing them just now. And it didn’t work. So I put that automator into the trash -
[pause]
and now my original four robots give me errors, ‘the application …. can’t be opened. -1712′. I found the solution here (basically, go to spotlight, type in activity, then locate the application on the list and quit it).

Here are my automators:

Robot 1

Robot 1

Robot 2

Robot 2

Robot 3

Robot 3

Robot 4

Robot 4

Automator….

I think I love you.

 


Compitum - publications

A. Lunven, Du diocèse à la paroisse. Évêchés de Rennes, Dol et Alet/Saint-Malo (Ve-XIIIe ...

diocese-paroisse.jpg

A. Lunven, Du diocèse à la paroisse. Évêchés de Rennes, Dol et Alet/Saint-Malo (Ve-XIIIe siècle), Rennes, 2014.

Éditeur : Presses universitaires de Rennes
434 pages
ISBN : 9782753532991
22 €

Au Moyen Âge, un maillage ecclésiastique s'étendant de la paroisse au diocèse, en passant par les doyennés et les archidiaconés, fut mis en place à l'échelle de la Chrétienté. Cette hiérarchie territoriale constitue l'aboutissement d'un lent processus de spatialisation des structures ecclésiales que cette étude tente de suivre en haute Bretagne, dans les diocèses de Rennes, Dol et Alet/Saint-Malo. L'analyse qui combine à l'approche plus traditionnelle par les sources écrites (actes de la pratique, récits hagiographiques et pouillés diocésains) l'enseignement des « archives du sol » (sépultures et bâti religieux), s'étend du Ve au XIIIe siècle, c'est-à-dire de l'installation des premiers évêchés à l'achèvement institutionnel des cadres ecclésiastiques.

Lire la suite...

Archaeology Magazine

Scarab Links Egyptian Pharaoh to Copper Mine in Jordan

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA—Scholars from the University of San Diego discovered an Egyptian scarab bearing the name of the Egyptian pharaoh Sheshonq I on the surface of the ground at Khirbat Hamra Ifdan, an ancient copper factory in southern Jordan’s Faynan district. “Most of the time, they were amulets, sometimes jewelry, and periodically, they were inscribed for use as personal or administrative seals. We think this is the case with the Sheshonq I scarab we found,” Thomas E. Levy of the University of California, San Diego, told Live Science. The scarab may have been lost during the pharaoh’s legendary military campaign in the region 3,000 years ago, which is mentioned in inscriptions at the Karnak temple complex in Thebes. Sheshonq I may also be represented in the Hebrew Bible as the Egyptian king “Shishak.” Levy and his team had previously identified a disruption in copper production in the Faynan district with the excavation of rock layers in the area of an ancient copper slag mound at Khirbat en-Nahas that were dated with high-precision radiocarbon dates. “The scarab we found that bears Sheshonq I’s name is the first time we can definitively link the disruption to his forces,” Levy announced. To read about an important settlement in Israel that was occupied during the Bronze Age, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "Excavating Tel Kedesh."

 

Hervé Huntzinger (Antiquitas)

Laurent Guichard : « Le baptême et la pourpre : « Initiation chrétienne et fonction impériale de Constantin à Théodose II »

Conférence donnée à l’université de Lorraine à Nancy, sur le campus Lettres et Sciences Humaines en salle A329b, jeudi 20 novembre de 18h à 19h.

Notre ancien collègue, Laurent Guichard, maître de conférences à l’Université de Savoie et membre du Laboratoire Langages, Littératures, Sociétés, Études Transfrontalières et Internationales (EA 3706), fera une conférence sur le thème de « l’initiation chrétienne et la fonction impériale de Constantin à Théodose II ».

« À l’exception de Julien, note Ambroise de Milan dans le De Obitu Theodosii, tous les empereurs qui se sont succédé étaient chrétiens ». Pour tous ces princes, le baptême, l’initiation chrétienne constituait donc une cérémonie importante. Mais paradoxalement, la question du baptême des empereurs chrétiens n’a guère retenu l’attention. Après Constantin, les études se font rares. Cette communication traitera donc des baptêmes impériaux, de Constantin jusqu’à Honorius (en Occident) et à Théodose II (en Orient). Il s’agira tout d’abord, lorsque c’est possible, de mettre en évidence les comportements baptismaux des empereurs et de leur famille proche. Ceux-ci devront ensuite être replacés dans le processus plus global de la christianisation de la société romaine. Enfin, nous serons en mesure de montrer comment la fonction impériale se trouve affectée par cette évolution qui modifie profondément les liens entre fonction impériale et statut baptismal de l’empereur.

AIA Fieldnotes

Taking Control of Nature: Human Transformation of China's Environment 5000-2000 Years Ago and Its Relevance for the Modern World

Event Type (you may select more than one): 
lecture
Start Date: 
Sunday, January 25, 2015 - 3:00pm

Lecture by Professor T.R. Kidder, Department of Anthropology, Washington University

Parking is available in the South parking lot of the Goldfarb Building, 3 blocks west of Skinker.  Enter at Tolman. Read more »

Location

Name: 
Judith Feinberg Brilliant
Telephone: 
314-997-2662
Call for Papers: 
no

Archaeology Magazine

Remains of Enslaved African-Americans Found at Nashville Zoo

NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE—An examination of nine sets of human remains removed from the grounds of the Nashville Zoo suggests that part of the property had once been a cemetery where enslaved African-Americans were buried. Shannon Hodge of Middle Tennessee State University found that all nine were under the age of 50 when they died. Six had arthritis of the knee and/or spine, indicating that they had carried heavy loads, and one young man had a damaged hip that may have been caused by the stress of heavy workloads at an early age. Archaeologist Larry McKee of TRC Companies Inc. found buttons, beads, and other artifacts dating between the 1820s and 1850s when he conducted the original excavation. “I’m thoroughly certain that what we’ve got now is part of the enslaved community using that as a burial ground,” he told The Tennessean. To read about escaped slaves in the Great Dismal Swamp, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "American Refugees."

 

AIA Fieldnotes

The Long Journey from Iraq: Investigating Mass Graves and Serving Our Veterans

Event Type (you may select more than one): 
lecture
Start Date: 
Wednesday, December 10, 2014 - 7:30pm

Lecture by Dr. Michael K. Trimble, Chief Preservation Manager, U.S. Army Corps of Engineering (USACE), St. Louis District

Parking lots at the History Museum are located to the right and left of the South entrance. Read more »

AIA Society: 

Location

Name: 
Judith Feinberg Brilliant
Telephone: 
314-997-2662
Call for Papers: 
no

Viking Rituals of Life and Death

Event Type (you may select more than one): 
lecture
Start Date: 
Tuesday, November 11, 2014 - 7:30pm

Lecture by Professor Michael J. Fuller, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology, St. Louis Community College

Parking lots at the History Museum are located to the right and left of the South entrance

  Read more »

AIA Society: 

Location

Name: 
Judith Feinberg Brilliant
Telephone: 
314-997-2662
Call for Papers: 
no

National Archaeology Day

Event Type (you may select more than one): 
nad
lecture
Start Date: 
Saturday, October 18, 2014 - 10:00am to 3:00pm

Various activities including hands-on study, and Historic Archaeology talk from 1 to 2 PM Read more »

AIA Society: 

Location

Name: 
Judith Feinberg Brilliant
Telephone: 
314-997-2662
Call for Papers: 
no

Naj Tunich and the Founding of Maya Cave Archaeology

Event Type (you may select more than one): 
lecture
Start Date: 
Wednesday, October 8, 2014 - 7:30pm

Lecture by James E. Brady, of California State University, Los Angeles

Parking lots at the History Museum are located to the right and left of the South entrance Read more »

AIA Society: 

Location

Name: 
Judith Feinberg Brilliant
Telephone: 
314-997-2662
Call for Papers: 
no

Archaeology Magazine

Roman-Period Village Excavated in Poland

Poland-Pottery-KilnKROSNO, POLAND—A village dating from the third to fourth centuries A.D. has been discovered in the Carpathian Mountains of southeastern Poland. At the site, archaeologists have uncovered a large kiln. “It stands on a small tip in the Wisloka Valley. Its location shows that the wind blowing from the river was used to maintain the temperature during the firing cycle. Such kilns are extremely rare in the Carpathians,” archaeologist Tomasz Leszczyński of the Subcarpathian Museum told Science & Scholarship in Poland. Fragments of large vessels that were used to store grain were also recovered. To read about people who lived in the Carpathians and Balkans during this period, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "Thracian Treasure Chest."

 

Open Access Archaeology

Open Access Archaeology Digest #546

Open Access (free to read) articles on archaeology:

Excavations of a medieval cemetery at Skaill House, and a cist in the Bay of Skaill, Sandwick, Orkney.
http://bit.ly/19LMxAI

The Acheulian in East Asia: a Cautionary Note
http://bit.ly/12loZPE

Trails through the Landscape of the Colorado Desert
http://bit.ly/1mmzdwo

Learn more about Open Access and Archaeology at: http://bit.ly/YHuyFK

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Oxfordshire Collector of Militaria Arrested


A day following the St Albans raid, there has been another arrest in the UK of a collector of militaria ('Arrest after World War Two explosive found in Bicester', BBC 18 September 2014)
A man has been arrested after a World War Two explosive was found and had to be detonated by police in Oxfordshire. Officers have closed Buckingham Crescent in Bicester and a small area of the street has been evacuated. Thames Valley Police confirmed one person had been arrested but no further details have been released.
UPDATE 18th September 2014 (From Oxford Mail) : Police say 
munitions discovered this morning at a home in Bicester may have been plundered by illegal metal detecting at heritage sites. A 35-year-old man is currently being held by police on suspicion of theft from heritage and protected sites after the raid on a home in Buckingham Crescent this morning.
There have apparently been controlled explosions actually within this house today.
 

UPDATE UPDATE 19th September 2014

Tania Steere, 'Posing with machine gun and dressed in army fatigues, man, 35, is arrested for taking arms from heritage sites' Daily Mail, 18 September 2014.
Daniel Mackay’s home was raided yesterday by police searching for artefacts that may have been illegally dug up with the help of metal detectors and removed from heritage sites. Mr Mackay, 35, from Bicester, Oxfordshire, was pictured online posing with his wartime finds and featured in a macabre YouTube video entitled ‘Exhumation of German soldiers in 2014 Kurland,’ an apparent reference to a Second World War battlefield in Latvia. In the video he is referred to as a "military archaeologist". The video was posted in June by 48-year-old Alan Tissington, whose home 40 miles away in St Albans, Hertfordshire, was raided by police on Wednesday, when a massive cache of guns, bullets, bombs and shells was discovered. Sources close to the case said the men knew each other and went to European battlefields and ex-military sites in the UK with metal detectors most weekends.[...]  Detective Inspector Steve Raffield said the operation was in its early days 
One wonders, on the mention of the involvement of this man in digging in the so-called Kurland Kessel  ("the Nazis' last stand") whether there is any connection with the fallout from the Nazi War Diggers fiasco last year. Here's the video, Mr  McKay appears at 1.5 minutes:



and Mr McKay's home collection is discussed here.






Archaeology Magazine

Satellite Imagery Shows Damage to Syria’s World Heritage Sites

WASHINGTON, D.C.—An analysis of high-resolution satellite imagery by the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences (AAAS) shows that five of Syria’s six World Heritage sites have been severely damaged since 2011, when the civil war began. “Only one of Syria’s six World Heritage sites—the Ancient City of Damascus—appears to remain undamaged,” Susan Wolfinbarger, director of the Geospatial Technologies and Human Rights Project at AAAS, told Science Daily. The buildings of Aleppo, one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, has suffered extensive damage. The Ancient City of Bosra, the Ancient Site of Palmyra, the Ancient Villages of Northern Syria, and the castles Crac des Chevaliers and Qal’at Salah El-Din have all been damaged by mortar impacts and military activity. “There is hope, and it lies with our Syrian colleagues because they are the stewards and caretakers of these sites, and they see the value in preserving and protecting them for future generations,” said Corine Wegener, cultural heritage preservation officer for the Smithsonian Institution. “What they need from their international colleagues is some help to do that—training, materials, and other support in the international arena for the notion that it is possible to mitigate and prevent damage to cultural heritage, even in the midst of conflicts.” To read more about Syria's rich archaeological heritage, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "Temple of the Storm God."

 

Archaeology Briefs

CONNECTICUT STATE ARCHAEOLOGIST INTERVIEWED FOR THE GREENWICH NEWSPAPER

Nick Bellantoni, the Connecticut State Archaeologist, who recently stepped down after over 30 years of digging up the past across the Nutmeg state, was in town last night for a talk at the Bruce Museum on his participation in the exhumation, forensic work, and final repatriation of a Lakota Sioux Indian to the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation.

According to Nancy Bernard, of the Archaeological Associates of Greenwich, the group that hosted him, Bellantoni’s talk was “fabulous.”

Before Bellantoni’s talk there was a moment to ask him a question begging to be asked. With all the deep digging that goes on in Greenwich, both for housing and for commercial sites, what if old relics or historic objects are found? What is the law of the land? Are these items routinely delivered over to Town authorities? What is his experience in this area?

“I’m called in only if human remains are found at construction sites,” he says. Other countries like England and France, etc, he says, stop construction when any relics or bones or pottery chards are uncovered.

The modus operandi in Connecticut towns Bellantoni says is if there’s any expectation a site will deliver important artifacts or early habitation, the Planning and Zoning is to be notified before any digging is done.

Bellantoni reported he will continue to teach – this semester he’ll be at the University of Connecticut teaching an introductory course in anthropology. But he’ll doubtfully not put more miles on his Chevy 10 truck which had accumulated 223,000 miles in his exploratory work across the state.

Reporter: Anne Semmes of the Greenwich Time.

AIA Fieldnotes

Archaeology Day at the College of Wooster

Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
Sponsored by Program in Archaeology and Archaeology Student Colloquium at the College of Wooster. Oberlin/Wooster Local Society of the AIA
Event Type (you may select more than one): 
nad
fair
Start Date: 
Saturday, October 18, 2014 - 11:00am

Archaeology Day at the College of Wooster is organized by students and faculty in the Program in Archaeology. It includes flintknapping demonstrations, exhibits by the local historical society with artifacts from prehistoric and historic sites in Wayne County, Ohio; maps and information by the Wayne County Cemetery Preservation Society; descriptions of student research; and activities for young children ("cave painting", mending pottery, etc.). There are displays of fossil human skulls and artifacts from the College's excavation at Pella in Jordan. Read more »

Location

AIA Society: 
Name: 
P. Nick Kardulias
Telephone: 
330-263-2474
Call for Papers: 
no

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Is this Evidence of Ancient Time Travel?


An absolutely, certainly, completely watertight post-1970-surfacing ancient, ancient, ancient metal item in an upcoming London auction bears some amazing traces which can only be interpreted as evidence of ancient time travel. Look at this groove. The toolmarks and form suggest very strongly that it was cut with a rotary tool rather than a tracer. Now we all know that Middle Eastern fakers of the early twentieth century used hand tools much like those used by ancient artisans, so that cannot be the explanation can it? Even though the lumpy design looks like it owes a lot to Art Deco modes... Nah, I reckon it's time travel all right. There's another longer groove just to the left with the same characteristics.


There are quite a few rather odd looking things in that catalogue... many of them with rather sketchy collecting histories. Caveat-you-know-who.



Program in Aegean Scripts and Prehistory

Poetry and War’s Horrors

Palaima: Poetry is one way to make sense of war’s horrors By Tom Palaima – Regular Contributor Posted: 6:00 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12, 2014 Austin American-Statesman PRINT EDITION Saturday September 13, 2014 http://www.statesman.com/news/news/opinion/palaima-poetry-is-one-way-to-make-sense-of-wars-ho/nhLhs/ NOTE: On the very day this appeared … Continue reading

Adam C. McCollum (hmmlorientalia)

The dearness of home: Arabic verse attributed to Maysūn bint Baḥdal al-Kalbiyya

The poem below is one of Heimweh. The poetess credited with the poem, whether rightly or wrongly, is Maysūn bint Baḥdal b. Unayf al-Kalbiyya, the mother of Yazīd I and wife of Muʿāwiya, and she is said to have sung these lines after her husband brought her to Syria (al-Šām) from the desert home of her family. She came from a tribe predominantly Christian. (See the brief article about her by Lammens in EI² 6: 924. On her father, Baḥdal, see EI² 1: 919-920.) After the Arabic text, an English translation follows, together with a list of some vocabulary.

The poem’s rhyme-letter (rawī) is f, which is preceded by ī or ū, these two vowels being considered as rhyming (Wright, Grammar of the Arabic Language, vol. 2, § 196b). The text of the poem is given in Nöldeke-Müller, Delectus veterum carminum arabicorum, Porta Linguarum Orientalium 13 (Berlin, 1890), p. 25, and in Heinrich Thorbecke’s edition of Al-Ḥarīrī’s (EI² 3: 221-222) Durrat al-ġawwāṣ fī awhām al-ḫawwāṣ (Leipzig, 1871), pp. 41-42. (Nöldeke and Müller dedicated their Delectus to the memory of the recently departed Thorbecke.) The images below are from the latter book.

al-hariri_durrat_p41al-hariri_durrat_p42

English’d:

Aye, dearer to me is a tent where the winds roar than a lofty palace.
Dearer to me is a rough woolen cloak with a happy heart than clothes of well-spun wool.
Dearer to me is a morsel of food at the side of the tent than a cake to eat.
Dearer to me are the sounds of winds in every mountain path than the tap of the tambourine.
Dearer to me is a dog barking at my night visitors than a familiar cat.
Dearer to me is a young, unyielding camel following a litter than an active mule.
And dearer to me is a thin generous man from among my cousins than a strong lavishly fed man.

Vocabulary and notes:

  • ḫafaqa i to beat; (of wind) to roar
  • qaṣr citadel, palace (on which see Jeffery, Foreign Vocabulary of the Qurʾān, 240)
  • munīf lofty, sublime, projecting
  • ʿabāʾa cloak made of coarse wool
  • qarra a i to be cool; with ʿayn eye, to be joyful, happy (Lane 2499c)
  • šaff a garment of fine wool
  • kusayra (dimin.) a small piece of something
  • kisr side (of a tent). Note in this line the jinās, the use of two words of the same root but different meaning (see Arberry, Arabic Poetry, 21-23).
  • raġīf cake
  • faǧǧ wide path in the mountains
  • naqr beat, crack, tap
  • duff tambourine
  • ṭāriq, pl. ṭurrāq someone who comes at night
  • dūn here, before, opposite (Lane 938c)
  • alūf familiar, sociable
  • bakr young camel
  • ṣaʿb difficult, unyielding
  • baġl mule
  • zafūf agile, active, quick
  • ẓaʿīna a woman’s litter carried by camels
  • ḫirq liberal, generous, bountiful
  • naḥīf thin, slight, meager
  • ʿilǧ “strong, sturdy man” (Lane)
  • ʿalīf fatted, stuffed, fed

Duke Collaboratory for Classics Computing

What’s in a placename?

New York. Paris. London. Saying these names likely evokes a sense of place in many people. Maybe what’s evoked is the knowledge of a place on a map, a sense of the culture there, or the memory of a trip. But what do these toponyms we can so casually reference actually mean? Do I mean “London” or “London”? “New York” or “New York”? If I were in my home state of Kentucky, I might well mean London and Paris. This gets even trickier when you consider the shifting cultural contexts (and even geography) introduced by thinking about historical placenames over time. In what sense is ancient Lutetia modern Paris?

The purpose here is not to retread already well-trod philosophical grounds, but rather to highlight the sorts of very real problems that can confront us when trying to align multiple datasets containing placenames. This is important for us at DC3 because we want to align multiple epigraphic databases containing a variety of forms of placenames; moreover, aligning these placenames to other databases which include actual geospatial information will allow querying and visualization of the data in a way which is not easily possible now. One can imagine looking for inscriptions found within some radius of an ancient or modern city, or creating a map showing the geographical distribution of all inscriptions in the database, or a visualization which illustrates the relationships between the findspot of an inscription and the placenames mentioned in its text, and so on.

One component of this involves aligning names in Pleiades and GeoNames, allowing us to get a “free” mapping to the other resource wherever we have a relationship to only one, and greatly expanding our graph of knowledge. The machine-automated process for this, known as “Pleiades+”, simply uses a combination of string-matching and geospatial filtering to try to find likely matches between both resources. But many of these matches may be erroneous under various criteria – multiple similarly-named places within a certain radius of one another may all be matched to one another, for example, or a city may be matched to both a city and an administrative region.

Similar to the problem Hugh discussed in the previous post, you can come up with certain rules for some of these cases, but others require a human to make the decision. As a result, we’ve adapted the excellent gazComp tool developed at Perseus to work through the list of Pleiades+ candidate matches and allow quick visualization and voting for each match. The process of developing and using the tool on real data has also turned up various kinds of ambiguities like those discussed before: what, exactly, do we mean by a “match”? For example, publications may occasionally use the name of the nearest modern city interchangeably with the actual archaeological site name, and sometimes GeoNames may have records for both the city and the site, and sometimes not. Any solution causes a certain amount of anxiety, as what’s “right” may depend on a variety of contexts – context of the place, context of the placename mention, context of how these “matches” will be used, and so on. There’s not one perfect answer for all cases. What we hope to accomplish is not perfection, but to move pragmatically toward improvement.

In that spirit, we’ve placed a publicly accessible instance of the Pleiades+ gazComp voting tool online. Currently, it requires sign-in with a Google account for vote attribution. Eventually, we will incorporate the results of these votes into the Pleiades+ output, so that anyone can use them. Additionally, if you start adding places to GeoNames where you currently come across an erroneous match in the voting tool (ancient ruins clearly visible on the satellite imagery with no marker in GeoNames, for example), they will eventually get picked up by the automated Pleiades+ process and be fed as candidate matches into the voting pool. The hope is that this process will also allow us to broaden the pool of Pleiades+ match candidates without making the data meaningless; once we have good vote coverage for this initial set, we can start to add in matches such as those from substring rather than exact string matching, which doubles the number of candidates.

We need your votes! If you have any questions or run into any problems, feel free to leave a comment on this post, drop us a line, or use the gazComp issue tracker on GitHub.

The post What’s in a placename? appeared first on Duke Collaboratory for Classics Computing (DC3).

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

ADCAE Dealer from the UK "Regrets"


An anonymous ADCAE dealer based in the UK announces on his or her website that although the CCPIA allows import of antiquities from countries with MOUs, on the basis of TWO different kinds of paperwork indicating licit export from the source country:

(NO collecting history stated)  Regretfully, we are unable to sell this item to American clients due to US import restrictions.


Wot, no paperwork?

("Previously in a German private collection and supplied with a thermoluminescence certificate from Laboratory Ralf Kotalla, Haigerloch, Germany, dating from November 1981") Regretfully, we are unable to sell this item to American clients due to US import restrictions.
Wot, no other paperwork? 

("Ex German private collection") Regretfully, we are unable to sell this item to American clients due to US import restrictions.
Wot, no paperwork?

("Previously in a private Florida collection")  Regretfully...
wot, no paperwork? 

("Previously in a private Florida collection") Regretfully we are unable to sell this item to American clients due to US import restrictions.
Wot, no paperwork here either? 

("Previously in a private Florida collection") Regretfully we are unable to sell this item to American clients due to US import restrictions.
No paperwork then? 

("Previously in a New York State private collection") Regretfully, we are unable to sell this item to American clients due to US import restrictions.
Paperwork deficiency perhaps? 

(NO collecting history stated) Regretfully, we are unable to sell this item to American clients due to US import restrictions.
Another one without da paperwerk? 

(NO collecting history stated) Regretfully, we are unable to sell this item to American clients due to US import restrictions.
Go on, surprise us, you've got paperwork for this one but this one's too nice to let go?

There are another two pages of this nonsense.  So how is it this dealer claims to be following ADCAE Code of Ethics, if he has no documentation of the collecting history that would allow the production of the very basic information requirted to import these objects under the terms of the US CCPIA? Where's the due diligence? Interestingly, the dealer does not say if they'd ship to Peru.


Shawn Graham (Electric Archaeology)

An Open Research Notebook Workflow with Scrivener and Github Part 2: Now With Dillinger.io!

A couple of updates:

First item

The four scripts that sparkygetsthegirl crafted allow him to

1. write in Scrivener,

2. sync to a Dropbox folder,

3. Convert to md,

4. then open those md files on an android table to write/edit/add

5. and then reconvert to rtf for syncing back into Scrivener.

Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 2.24.27 PMI wondered to myself, what about some of the online markdown editors? Dillinger.io can scan Dropbox for md files. So, I went to Dillinger.io, linked it to my dropbox, scanned for md files, and lo! I found my project notes. So if the syncing folder is shared with other users, they can edit the notecards via Dillinger. Cool, eh? Not everyone has a native app for editing, so they can just point their browser’s device to the website. I’m sure there are more options out there.

Second Item

I was getting syncing errors because I wasn’t flipping the md back to rtf.

But, one caveat: when I went to run the md to rtf script, to get my changes back into Scrivener (and then sync), things seemed to go very wonky indeed. One card was now blank, the others were all Scrivener’s markup but Scrivener wasn’t recognizing it.

So I think the problem is me doing things out of order. I continue to play.

Third Item

I automated running of the conversion scripts. You can see my automator set up in the screenshot below. Again, I saved it as an application on my desktop. First step is to grab the right folder. Second, to open the terminal, input the commands, then close the terminal.

Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 2.36.03 PM

Postscript

I was asked why on earth would I want to share my research notes? Many many reasons – see Caleb McDaniel’s post, for instance – but one other feature is that, because I’m doing this on Github, a person could fork (copy) my entire research archive. They could then use it to build upon. Github keeps track of who forks what, so forking becomes a kind of mass citation and breadcrumb trail showing who had an idea first. Moreover, github code (or in this case, my research archive) can be archived on figshare too, thus giving it a unique DOI *and* proper digital archiving in multiple locations. Kinda neat, eh?


Archaeological News on Tumblr

Engineers found Teutonic axes in the Forest District Wipsowo

Three Teutonic battle axes from the late Middle Ages have been found by engineers who removed World War II artillery shells left in the Forest District Wipsowo (Warmia and Mazury). The weapons will be donated to the museum.

Engineers stumbled upon the historic axes by chance, while searching the woods with metal detectors. The weapons have been initially identified by an archaeologist as late-medieval Teutonic battle axes.

Iron axes were close to each other, shallow underground, among the roots of trees. “It can be assumed that this is a deposit that someone left for better times. Read more.

AIA Fieldnotes

International Archaeology Day: "Discover Mysteries of the Past"

Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
Sponsored by Western Science Center
Event Type (you may select more than one): 
nad
education
other
Start Date: 
Saturday, October 18, 2014 - 10:00am

Celebrate International Archaeology Day! Discover mysteries of the past at Western Science Center in cooperation with the Mt. San Jacinto College Anthropology Club. Read more »

Location

AIA Society: 
Name: 
Margaret Ozolins
Telephone: 
951-791-0033
Call for Papers: 
no

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

The Green collection founder and his bible museum

A commenter draws my attention to a most interesting article in the Washington Post:

Hobby Lobby’s Steve Green has big plans for his Bible museum in Washington

The Bible museum taking shape in the building over the Federal Center SW Metro station started out in a very different location and with a very different message.

The project was planned for Texas in the late 2000s. Green told reporters he intended to put it in Dallas because so many church-going Christians live there. The mission statement on its initial nonprofit filing documents was clear: to “bring to life the living word of God … to inspire confidence in the absolute authority” of the Bible’s words. Green wanted to hand out Bible tracts to visitors, who would exit the museum singing “Amazing Grace,” said Scott Carroll, a specialist in biblical manuscripts who advised Green’s Bible-collecting and museum efforts from their start in 2009 through 2012.

Today, the message has undergone a drastic revision. The Web site for Green’s traveling Bible exhibit, “Passages,” says the museum “will be dedicated to a scholarly approach to the history, narrative and impact of the Bible.” Green says he now supports a museum approach that is nonsectarian and non-proselytizing.

The skeptics have another reason to embrace this new museum. Substantive funding for Bible scholarship and exploration is scarce. At a time when polls show that Americans are increasingly ignorant about the Bible and religion, the Greens are happily pouring hundreds of millions into preserving, researching and taking public what’s called the Book of Books.

… things turned sharply in 2009, as Green worked with Carroll to start building his collection.

The economy crashed, and several private donors and major institutions started dumping assets. Green went on a three-year buying spree. “We were looking at good buying. We thought: ‘This is worth much more than they’re asking. Let’s buy it.’ ”

Green bought Dead Sea Scroll fragments, Babe Ruth’s Bible, the Codex Climaci Rescriptus — a bundle of manuscripts from the 5th to the 9th centuries that includes the phrase that Christianity teaches Jesus uttered on the cross: “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani” (“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”). Green owns the world’s largest collection of Torah scrolls.

As word spread of the Green Collection, some scholars panted at the possibility that items long held in completely private collections might be available for study.

It’s an interesting article on an interesting subject.

In the ruling class of the USA there seems to be a terrifying degree of bigotry towards their own backwoods Christianity, from which Green has emerged.  I have already seen vituperation from scholars which I can only characterise as motivated by the idea that “this is our space” and based purely on religious animosity.  But it would be a great pity if this antipathy was allowed to derail a project that should be of universal benefit.

Larry Rothfield (The Punching Bag)

Call for Papers: U of Chicago Conference on New Approaches to the Study of Archaeological Looting an dIllicit Antiquities Trafficking



CALL FOR PAPERS
Archaeological Looting: New Approaches to an Ancient Problem
A two-day conference at the University of Chicago
27-28 February 2015
Joseph Regenstein Library, room 122

The Past for Sale: New Approaches to the Study of Archaeological Looting and the Illicit Trafficking of Antiquities is a three-year interdisciplinary project hosted by the University of Chicago. With major funding from the Neubauer Family Collegium for Culture and Society, the project brings together anthropologists, archaeologists, art historians, legal scholars, museum professionals, and social scientists in order to develop new ways of safeguarding archaeological sites, cultural heritage sites, and museums from looting and illicit collecting. Our aim is to advance both scholarly and policy goals.

Our opening conference will address the topic of new approaches to archaeological looting. The ultimate aim of The Past for Sale is to generate new policy and conservation tools for the safeguarding of cultural heritage sites, archaeological sites, and artworks and artifacts. Along the way, we seek to clarify the grounds of inquiry. This includes definitional and methodological work, as well as empirical data. We are pleased to announce that Dr. Neil Brodie, co-director of the Trafficking Culture research center at the University of Glasgow, will present the keynote address on Saturday, February 28, 2015. Dr. Brodie is an internationally respected expert on the illicit trafficking of art and antiquities.

Some of the questions on the agenda for this conference include:
  • Who loots, and why? What are the economic and social factors that incentivize
    this practice?
  • How is the illicit trafficking of art and antiquities organized?
  • What is the impact of looting on local communities? What can we learn from
    local-level efforts to stop cultural looting and trafficking?
  • What recent innovations (in policy, law, technology, advocacy, etc.) hold promise
    – or only false promise -- to curb looting?
    Papers will be allocated 20-minute presentation slots as part of panels, with half an hour at the end of each panel for discussion. It is hoped that the conference will give rise to an edited volume of essays.


    200-word abstracts, with paper title and author’s contact details, should be submitted to Fiona Rose-Greenland at fargreenland@uchicago.edu by 1 November 2014. Replies will be sent by November 21, 2014. More information about The Past for Sale is available here: http://neubauercollegium.uchicago.edu/faculty/past_for_sale/
page1image21208 page1image21368

Rebecca Seifried (Archaeology in (Geo)space)

Satellite Imagery: Types, Resolution, and Pricing

So you want to buy a satellite image… What types are available? What resolution can you expect? And how much is this going to cost, anyway? This is a very basic introduction to the types of products available to us today – it’s by no means exhaustive and I’ve tried to keep it simple.

The most important thing to figure out before investing in a product is why exactly you want the imagery. If you’re just interested in identifying buildings or standing walls, there are several free or very cheap options available (like Google Earth). If you’re looking for small-scale changes in vegetation that might reflect archaeological phenomena, then high-resolution, multi-spectral imagery is going to be your best bet.

TYPES OF IMAGERY

There are three basic types of satellite imagery:

1. Panchromatic (essentially black-and-white). The earliest types of satellite imagery were taken by a black-and-white camera mounted to a spacecraft. A great example is the CORONA satellite, launched by the United States National Reconnaissance Office in the 1960s. The CORONA mission used several satellites, and it targeted areas of the world where suspected military action was taking place (especially the Near East). In 1995, the U.S. government declassified thousands of CORONA images, making them one of the cheapest and most accessible sources of historical satellite imagery. Because the photos were taken as stereo pairs, it’s also possible to turn them into digital elevation models (DEMs) (see Casana and Cothren 2008). Today’s CORONA imagery is scanned from black-and-white photographic negatives.

Fun fact: A lot of the CORONA imagery over the Middle East has already been processed and made publicly available by the University of Arkansas Center for Advanced Spatial Technologies. Check it out!

2. Multispectral. First – let’s review “RGB,” which stands for “red, green, blue” and is a standard format for most photos. RGB files have three layers of information, one that corresponds to the reds in the image, another for the greens, and a third for the blues. In other words, RGB images only record visible light. Since the 1980s, satellites have been recording colors beyond the RGB spectrum, meaning they are “multispectral.” GeoEye-1 is an example of four-band (RGBN) multi-spectral imagery. The fourth letter, N, refers to a particular wavelength of near-infrared light. If you purchase a GeoEye-1 image, your file will come with all four bands – red, green, blue, and near-infrared. Landsat has up to 8 bands. If you look at those same images in Google Earth, you can’t see the extra bands, since you don’t have access to the original files.

The non-visible wavelengths are important because they can be used to detect different levels of vegetation growth. The chlorophyll in plants gives off a certain kind of light that can’t be seen by the human eye, but it can be recorded by specialized cameras. These extra bands unlock a whole world of potential analyses that can detect subtle differences in vegetation growth across a landscape. In turn, they can be used to identify subterranean archaeological features (walls, ditches, roads) or ancient waterways. When you purchase a multispectral image, it can be bundled with a higher-resolution, panchromatic image. This allows the user to combine the two in a process called pansharpening, which merges the color bands with the high-resolution black-and-white imagery.

3. Hyperspectral. These images don’t just record a few bands of light – they record sometimes hundreds of very narrow bands. The goal is to cover the continuous spectrum of light, rather than record it in discrete bands. These types of images tend to be used in more specific applications that I won’t go into here.

In summary, RGB color and panchromatic are great for people who are just interested in identifying features on the ground now, tracing changes in the landscape over time, or even detecting seasonal variation that may reflect the presence of subsurface features. Multi- and hyperspectral imagery is best for more advanced applications that rely on subtle changes in vegetation growth.

RESOLUTION

The next step is to figure out the spatial resolution you need for your project. Spatial resolution can vary pretty widely, depending on when the image was taken and the price-point of the product. It’s usually measured in meters (compared to the resolution of aerial photos or maps, which is usually given as a scale, like 1:5,000). A resolution of 2 meters means that you probably won’t be able to see anything smaller than that. So, if you are looking for walls or terraces, you should consider going with a higher-resolution image.

CORONA, Landsat 5, and QuickBird imagery of Diros Bay (imagery courtesy the USGS and the DigitalGlobe Foundation)

Imagery of Diros Bay, Mani peninsula, Greece. Left: 2.5-meter resolution, panchromatic CORONA. Center: 30-meter resolution, 7-band multispectral Landsat 5. Right: 0.5-meter resolution, 4-band multispectral QuickBird (showing the near-infrared band). Imagery courtesy the USGS and the DigitalGlobe Foundation.

COMPARISON CHART

This info was put together in September 2014. Prices are only estimates based on online sources, but prices may be lower with certain sales outlets, and academic discounts can range from 20-30%.

  • MS = Multispectral resolution
  • Pan = Panchromatic resolution
  • Scene size = the total coverage of the scene, or the maximum swath width (if just a single number)
Type Years Bands MS (m) Pan (m) Scene size (km) Cost (per sq. km)
CORONA 1960-1972 1 2-8 17 x 232 $30 per scene
Landsat 4-5 MSS 1982-1999 4 80 170 x 185 Free
Landsat 4-5 TM 1982-2012 7 30 170 x 185 Free
Landsat 7 ETM+ 1999- 8 30 15 170 x 185 Free
Landsat 8 2013- 8 30 15 170 x 185 Free
SPOT 1-3 1986-1997 3 20 10 60 x 60 $1,200 per scene
SPOT 4 1998-2013 4 20 10 60 x 60 $1,200 per scene
SPOT 5 2002- 4 10 2.5 / 5 60 x 60 $2,700 per scene
SPOT 6-7 2012- 4 6 1.5 60 $5.15
IKONOS (PDF) 1999- 4 4 1 11.3 $10
QuickBird (PDF) 2001-2014 4 2.4 0.6 16.8 $16
Pléiades 1A-1B 2011- 4 2 0.5 20 $13
WorldView-1 2007- 1 0.46 17.6 x 14 $13
WorldView-2 (PDF) 2009- 8 1.84 0.46 16.4 $29
WorldView-3 2014- 28 1.24 0.31 13.1 ?
WorldView-4 / GeoEye-2 [2016] ? ? ? ? ?

WHERE TO BUY?

CORONA and Landsat can be purchased or downloaded from the USGS. SPOT and Pleiades can be purchased from the Airbus GeoStore or other online retailers. Other products usually have to be purchased from a third-party retailer, like Satellite Imaging Corporation, Landinfo, or MapMart, just to name a few.

 


Further reading:

Casana, J., and J. Cothren. 2008. “Stereo Analysis, DEM Extraction and Orthorectification of CORONA Satellite Imagery: Archaeological Applications from the Near East.” Antiquity 82(317):732-49.

Challis, K. et al. 2002-2004. “Corona Remotely-Sensed Imagery in Dryland Archaeology: The Islamic City of al-Raqqa, Syria.” Journal of Field Archaeology 29 (1/2): 139-153.

Morehart, C.T. 2012. “Mapping Ancient Chinampa Landscapes in the Basin of Mexico: A Remote Sensing and GIS Approach.” Journal of Archaeological Science 39:2541-51.

Siart, C., O. Bubenzer, and B. Eitel. 2009. “Combining Digital Elevation Data (SRTM/ASTER), High Resolution Satellite Imagery (Quickbird) and GIS for Geomorphological Mapping: A Multi-Component Case Study on Mediterranean Karst in Central Crete.” Geomorphology 112:106-21.


Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Knell on the PAS


David Knell has a few interesting comments (Friday, 19 September 2014, 'A few thoughts on the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS)') including the following, with which I am in total agreement:
I would urge the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS), as a government organisation in the front line of the situation, to do a better job at getting the conservation message across [...] There seems to be a common misconception that the mission of the PAS is to encourage and foster metal detecting for its own sake. It is not. [...] I think the word 'partnership' is an unfortunate choice of vocabulary. I suspect the PAS meant the word to convey merely taking part in something but a large number of detectorists apparently interpret it as meaning far more: that they are equal to the trained professionals. Sadly, what those professionals actually do seems to be utterly lost on the more braindead members of the hobby, many of whom are under the impression that 'archaeology' is just about digging up objects [...] Thus, we witness the abysmal stupidity of claims such as that made by James Warr. There are undoubtedly perceptive detectorists out there but it is clear that a large proportion of them are anything but. [...] the PAS faces an uphill struggle - and I would like to see them spend more time on explaining the pitfalls of the hobby and less time on condoning its sensationalisation.
I would add to that, let the PAS start at last telling it like it is, with a bit more transparency and detail in presenting the results of "outreach" to artefact hunters compared with other groups of the public and an openness in their presentation which seems to me to be rather difficult to find at the moment.

Paul Dilley (Hieroi Logoi)

A Repertoire of Byzantine “Beneficial Tales”

Rembrandt-Kopist_001

This website of “Narrations Useful to the Soul,” a genre that flourished in Late Antique monasticism, has quietly been online since at least 2001, when it is cited by John Wortley, its author, in Dumbarton Oaks Papers 55. Is this one of the first online resources to be explicitly cited in an article on Late Antiquity? In any case, it is still available at the author’s personal webpage courtesy of the University of Manitoba, where he is an emeritus professor. The Repertoire consists of over 900 précis of “spiritual tales,” culled from a wide variety of Late Antique sources, selected primarily according to criterion of narrative form. The tales are ordered arbitrarily according to “W” numbers, and frequently cross-reference the entries of François Halkin in Bibliotheca Hagiographica Graeca (1957) and Novum Auctarium Bibliothecae Hagiographicae Graecae (1984), which one must consult for manuscript descriptions of unpublished texts. The great research benefit of the site (is it good for the soul?) is the ability to search these texts for content.

http://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~wortley/


Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Detectorists Trailer


Now we know what the "slightly intimidating blokes in a pub" scene was about. But how many black metal detectorists are there in Danbury?

Post użytkownika Lola Entertainment.

Ancient Peoples

Rishi coffin of Puhorsenbu c.1580-1479 BC 17th-18th Dynasty,...



Rishi coffin of Puhorsenbu

c.1580-1479 BC

17th-18th Dynasty, Late Second Intermediate Period/Early New Kingdom

The Arabic word “rishi,” meaning feathered, is used to describe a group of coffins made in the Theban area during Dynasty 17 and early Dynasty 18. This coffin is a particularly fine example of the type. Special care has been taken with the modelling of the face. The feather pattern has become an abstract design, as has the broad collar, whose strands of beads echo the contour of the vulture pendant making the bird’s wings appear to extend up the mummy’s shoulders. 

(Source: The Metropolitan Museum)

Doug's Archaeology: Investigating the Profession and Research

Around the Archaeology Blog-o-sphere Digest #3

Our third Archaeology Blog-0-sphere round-up. Hope you enjoy the reading.

Blurb

I am highlighting some of the other archeo-blogs out there but instead of focusing on the whole blog I am going to be collecting all their posts from the previous week . Also, I realise not everyone uses an RSS reader and some people might be interested in occasional posts from a blog and not follow them constantly so this round up might be useful for them.

I took these posts from my now updated list of archaeology blogs (410+ and counting). Though I have noticed a few blogs that should be in this list are missing. It is better than the last few weeks but I am still working out the issues. I am currently at the LAN conference so have not had the time to fix it. Here are this weeks posts–

https://heritageaction.wordpress.com/
Get ‘em young and they won’t damage ancient sites!
The importance of context…..
https://gath.wordpress.com/
Safi Archaeology at the 2014 “Night of the Scientists” at BIU
http://www.thesubversivearchaeologist.com/
Still Here!
Herding Cats! Episode 1.
For Openers, Your Own Subversive Archaeologist Bottle Opener/Keychain.
Scots Wha Hae!
Meet Mr. Gradgrind
http://www.theheritagealliance.org.uk/
Heritage Update #285 is out!
http://www.thecolchesterarchaeologist.co.uk/
come to our NAAFI open day tomorrow! – 13th September
good NAAFI open day at Roman Circus House!
Roman circus centre and cafe now closed for the winter
Roman circus remains exposed by service trench
http://www.succinctresearch.com/
Remedying the Plight of the Archaeological Technician
Bringing a Slice of the Archives to the Internet: the River Street Digital History Project
http://www.southeastasianarchaeology.com/
Angkor Wat
Excavations at Loc Giang
Institute for Southeast Asian Archaeology Early Career Award
Now reporting ‘live’ from Bangkok
Dhammazedi Bell search proves fruitless
Ban Chiang artefacts return to Thailand
Khmer sculpture on loan at the National Gallery of Australia
Thailand to help Myanmar with development of Pyu Cities site
Iconic Ta Prohm trees to go
The Khmer temples of Laos
http://www.rantinandrovin.com/
The Joseph Conrad
http://www.poweredbyosteons.org/
Holding Hands That Aren’t There
http://www.penn.museum/blog
Ringo’s Newest Production
http://www.mshanks.com/
Scottish independence – heritage and the nation state
Demosthenes Agrafiotis – hylography
Antiquarians and the origins of design thinking
http://www.medievalarchitecture.net/blog
Richard III death injuries revealed
http://www.evobeach.com/
Science
Graduate school
http://www.archaeologysouthwest.org/
Meltdown!
Tribal Development Rights Trump Historic Preservation in Palm Springs
http://www.archaeologychannel.org/component/content/?view=featured
Video News from TAC – September 2014
Audio News from Archaeologica, 7 September – 13 September 2014
http://www.archaeogeomancy.net/
The United Kingdom; a sense of place
http://www.archaeogeek.com/
OSGIS 2014
http://www.apaame.org/
Research: Qasr Ain el-Beidha
http://www.anonymousswisscollector.com/
Culture crime news 8–14 September 2014
http://www.aggsbach.de/
Excavated 100 years ago: The lower Rock shelter of Le Moustier
http://www.acagle.net/ArchaeoBlog
Trigger warning!
Bodies bodies everywhere!
Skeletons in love
Yes?
Big ol’ Greek tomb update
Richard II update
Actually most of us think he’s a cool fictional character
Forgot this from a few days ago.
http://westerndigs.org/
Shipwrecks Discovered in Nautical ‘Graveyard’ at San Francisco’s Golden Gate
http://urban-archaeology.blogspot.com/
How to make and use a pole-mounted camera
http://ucsheritage.wordpress.com/
Back on Track: Heritage Lecture
Saxon Shore: Heritage Lecture
http://togs-from-bogs.blogspot.com/
Ah, the joy of learning.
Games of a different kind.
Gratuitous Cat Pics.
Random Linky Stuff.
Strap weaving.
Gobbled up.
http://theyoungarchaeologist.com/
What Is A Date Bracket? – La Tène Pottery – Star Carr
New Promotional Video
What Does BC, AD, BCE and CE Mean? – Göbekli Tepe – Non Nok Tha, Thailand
http://thesebonesofmine.wordpress.com/
Round-up of Doug’s Disability In Archaeology Posts
http://theedgeofthevillage.com/
Living Heritage
http://telburna.wordpress.com/
Call for Volunteers for 2015 Season!
http://structuralarchaeology.blogspot.com/
Dumbing down the past.
http://socarchsci.blogspot.com/
A Sojourn into the Foodways of Prehistoric Southern Vietnam-Michelle Eusebio
http://shelteringmemory.wordpress.com/
What have we here?
http://sexyarchaeology.wordpress.com/
At long last… The wreck of a long-lost ship from the Franklin Expedition has been found in the Canadian Arctic
http://scienceblogs.com/aardvarchaeology
September Pieces Of My Mind #1
http://saraperry.wordpress.com/
What archaeologists do: Between archaeology and media archaeology
http://rmchapple.blogspot.com/
Drumclay Crannog Report | We wait. We are bored.
European Heritage Open Days 2014 | Where did you discover?
http://ritaroberts.wordpress.com/
Bid a Warm Welcome to Ourselves & Our Friends on Twitter & their Linear B Sites
Ancient kitchen found in Sagalassos
The making and meaning of Ming: 50 years that changed China
http://qmackie.com/
ASBC Victoria Talk: Tuesday September 16, Jenny Cohen on Paleoethnobotany of Kilgii Gwaay
http://publicplacespastpresent.wordpress.com/
Tourists in Piazzas
Venice ‘Streets’
http://publicarchaeology2015.wordpress.com/
December: Lorna Richardson, archaeologist of sorts
http://pryorfrancis.wordpress.com/
Oh, the Pains of Love and Life(rs)
http://process-arch.tumblr.com/
everythingisanthropology: anthropologymajorfox: Heads up to…
CRM versus the Academy
http://prehistories.wordpress.com/
Line Let Loose
Archaeological Oddities: Sanxingdui Bronzes
http://paleotool.com/
Another from Thoreau
http://paigedoerner.wordpress.com/
Ask A Curator – Sept. 17, 2014
http://ossamenta.dreamwidth.org/
A quick links dump
http://openaccessarchaeology.tumblr.com/
Open Access Archaeology Digest #539
Open Access Archaeology Digest #540
Open Access Archaeology Digest #541
Open Access Archaeology Digest #542
Open Access Archaeology Digest #543
Open Access Archaeology Digest #544
Open Access Archaeology Digest #545
http://nosasblog.wordpress.com/
Highland Hillforts
Belladrum Excavation, 31st August – 7th September 2014
http://nmnh.typepad.com/rogers_archaeology_lab/
SIMA Intern Guest Post: Explorations in Classical Plaster Casts at NMNH
#AskACurator
http://newmuseumkat.wordpress.com/
Soldiers in Silloth
http://newdealarchaeology.com/
New Deal Archaeology in the West
http://neolithichouses.wordpress.com/
Bringing the past to life in the Neolithic Houses – a volunteers story
http://mikepitts.wordpress.com/
Richard III’s death – the grim details
http://middlesavagery.wordpress.com/
SAA 2015: A Session Honoring Ruth Tringham
SHA 2015: Punk as Organizing Structure and Ethos for Emancipatory Archaeological Practice
Notes on Getting Your Whole Life Stolen
http://merryn.dineley.com/
grain dryers, malt kilns & “malting ovens”
http://memetechnology.org/
On Minecraft
http://megalithix.wordpress.com/
Holy Well, Watnall, Nottinghamshire
Nanny Well, Chapel le Frith
http://mediterraneanworld.wordpress.com/
Friday Varia and Quick Hits
Auctioning Atari: Archaeology, Ethics, and Contemporary Practice
More Pallets, More Pallets!!
The Most Depressing Dog Park
Craft in Archaeology: The Craft of Pottery Analysis in Mediterranean Archaeology
Friday Varia and Quick Hits
http://medievalsaiproject.wordpress.com/
Sudanological events after Neuchâtel
http://marysblack.com/
Peyote Fire Shaman of the Canyons Available Now for Pre-Order!
http://lootingmatters.blogspot.com/
The Ka Nefer Nefer Mask and the Saqqara link
Zakaria Goneim at Saqqara
The Ka Nefer Nefer Mask and 2005
Zakaria Goneim excavating in Egypt
The identification of Ka Nefer Nefer
Scotland Decides
http://leifuss.wordpress.com/
Without a federal UK, a reluctant ‘Yes’
http://larryrothfield.blogspot.com/
New Report from Abdulamir Hamdani on the Situation in Iraq
http://landscapetales.wordpress.com/
Here be Dragons…
http://kelseymuseum.wordpress.com/
Looking for Non-elites at Gabii
http://jamiestott.com/
Ask An Archaeologist Video
http://itsurfaceddownunder.blogspot.com/
New human remains trade research in the SAA 2015 illicit antiquities panel
http://irisharchaeology.ie/
Rocking through the Ages
New bog body found in Rossan, Co. Meath
Plans to make historic Inis Cealtra island more accessible to the public
http://illicitculturalproperty.com/
Cultural Heritage Law Moot Court Competition
http://howardwilliamsblog.wordpress.com/
Archaeologies of Mortuary Disasters
The EAA and the Middle Ages
Archaeodeath at the EAA
Howard’s Funerary Favourites: Burial Communities in Long Term Perspective
http://heritageaction.wordpress.com/
See you there….Duloe or Rollrights (or both?!)
PAS lines up with Tesco’s about taking goods home unseen!
Megameet Report
Heritage Value
http://harngroup.wordpress.com/
Vignettes
http://glossographia.wordpress.com/
Aw richts is pitten by
Review: Cerulo, Never saw it coming
http://gath.wordpress.com/
“Wandering Arameans”: Workshop on the Arameans Outside of Syria – Leipzig, 21-23 of October, 2014
Faience technology at EB Safi: Poster at Upcoming conference in Cyprus
New Fellowship in Jewish Studies
Geoarchaeology and Environmental Archaeology at the Annual Meeting of the Israel Society of Ecology and Environmental Sciences – BIU, 16-18 sept., 2014
The forthcoming Jewish Study Bible from Oxford (2nd edition)
Grand Valley State University Group at Safi 2015!
Congratulations to Shira Kisos and Emuna Levy!
Pictures from the Safi Corner at the Scientists’ Night
http://followinghadrian.com/
A journey to Terracina on the Riviera of Ulysses
http://flindersarchaeology.com/
Nice Day for a Fish
http://findsandfeatures.wordpress.com/
Tweets from The Connected Past 2014
http://ethandoylewhite.blogspot.com/
An Interview with Dr. Dylan Burns
http://eoliths.blogspot.com/
Prehistoric Clothing
http://elfshotgallery.blogspot.com/
Fog
Ice
Adjusting to home life
http://elfrethsalleyarchaeology.blogspot.com/
Upcoming Fall Archaeology Events
http://electricarchaeology.ca/
Open Notebooks
An Open Research Notebook Workflow with Scrivener and Github
http://dougsarchaeology.wordpress.com/
Around the Archaeology Blog-o-sphere Digest #2
What an Independent Scotland would mean for Archaeology and Heritage.
A Tale of Two Countries: Scottish Independence and the Archaeology workforce
Would an Independent Scotland Increase or Decrease Heritage and Archaeology Funding?
http://dienekes.blogspot.com/
Ancient mtDNA from southern Africa related to San
Murderous chimps
23andMe mega-study on different American groups
http://desertislandarchaeologies.wordpress.com/
Week 11: Sue Greaney
Week 12: Spencer Gavin Smith
http://darkageology.wordpress.com/
The PAS is awesome
http://culturalheritagelawyer.blogspot.com/
CPAC to Hold Hearing on El Salvador’s MoU Extension Request
Conservator’s Records To Be Subpoenaed As Prosecutors Score Triple Victory in Peruvian Artifacts Forfeiture Cases
http://contextintn.wordpress.com/
CIA Reports 31,500 ISIL Fighters in Syria-Iraq
Tennessee Archaeology Awareness Month and Tennessee Archaeology Blogfest
Scottish Independence
http://conflictantiquities.wordpress.com/
Maiduguri city is ‘completely surrounded’ and is at risk of ‘total annihilation’ by Boko Haram
There is not yet any evidence that the Islamic State has destroyed Sufi shrines in Deir Ezzor, Syria, September 2014
Alalam does not have any evidence that the Islamic State has destroyed Sufi shrines in Deir Ezzor, Syria, September 2014
http://computationalarchaeology.wordpress.com/
We don’t find computers, or do we?
http://commonhumanitybbth.wordpress.com/
#ArchaeoMadness
http://chi.anthropology.msu.edu/
CHI Fellowship Introduction: Lisa Bright
CHI Fellowship Introduction: J. M. Bradshaw
CHI Fellowship Introduction: Santos Ramos
Hello there! CHI Fellowship Intro: Jennifer A. Royston
http://campusarch.msu.edu/
Lisa Bright – Introduction
To blog or not to blog
http://bonesdontlie.wordpress.com/
An Unusual Case of Scurvy found in the Maya
http://bonebrokeblog.wordpress.com/
Pop Culture Osteology: Once Upon a Time #3
http://blogs.ucl.ac.uk/museums
Specimen of the Week: Week 153
Ask a Curator day 2014
Murder in the Theatre
http://blog.underoverarch.co.nz/
Stay classy, Christchurch
http://blog.museumoflondon.org.uk/
Egg Boys in the East End
All that Glitters at the Archaeological Archive
Behind the scenes with Sherlock Holmes
http://billboyheritagesurvey.wordpress.com/
5 rigs ready for 5 kites: the equip for community KAP continues
A short talk made long…
http://beautifullybony.wordpress.com/
Week 22 Volunteering at the Royal College of Surgeons
The Harris Line/Growth Arrest Lines
http://bamburghresearchproject.wordpress.com/
A win for our friends at Hirst Park Middle School
http://asorblog.org/
Witchcraft in Ancient Mesopotamia
http://arqueologiaagraria.wordpress.com/
TALLERES ARQUEOLÓGICOS VIGAÑA 2014: ACERCANDO LA ARQUEOLOGÍA A LA SOCIEDAD
http://archyfantasies.com/
Mayans in Georgia: America Unearthed Episode One.
http://archaeologyoftombraider.com/
Meet the Main Characters of Lara Croft & the Temple of Osiris!
http://archaeologyandanxiety.wordpress.com/
More thesis work and less Real Housewives
http://archaeologik.blogspot.com/
Das Ende der chronologisch definierten Archäologien
http://archaeologicalnetworks.wordpress.com/
It’s that conference season again!
http://archaeogaming.wordpress.com/
The Numismatics of the Elder Scrolls
http://apps.ohiohistory.org/ohioarchaeology
American Indian Heritage Day at Serpent Mound
“70th Anniversary of the Normandy Invasion, Shipwrecks of World War II and More”.
OCTAGON EARTHWORKS OPEN HOUSE — SATURDAY OCTOBER 12th 2014
ASK A CURATOR DAY!
New Lake Erie Shipwreck Discovery
http://ancientworldonline.blogspot.com/
Open Access Journal: Quaderni della Soprintendenza archeologica del Piemonte
From Bactria to Taxila: A database of resources on Hellenistic and Imperial Central Asian studies
CDLI’s Recent Publications in Assyriology
Editions in progress: List of Greek editions & translations in progress
Open Access Journal: Revue de Linguistique Latine du Centre Alfred Ernout: De lingua Latina
Open Access Journal: Camenae
Attic Inscriptions Online News
Open Access Journal: Institute of Nautical Archaeology Quarterly
Open Access Ancient Law Journals
Open Access Book Reviews on Antiquity
From the Archivist’s Notebook: Essays Inspired by Archival Research in Athens Greece
Searchable Greek Inscriptions: A Scholarly Tool in Progress. The Packard Humanities Institute
Short term open access to articles in the current Anatolian Studies
Open Access Journal: ENIM: Égypte nilotique et méditerranéenne
Archaeological Survey of Israel Online
News from Dickinson College Commentaries: A complete vocabulary of the Aeneid
Open Access Monograph Series: Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Monographs
Daphnet: ILIESI’s Digital Archives of PHilosophical texts on the NET
Digitales Forum Romanum
Digital Humanities and the Ancient World
Open Access Journal: Vjesnik Arheološkog muzeja u Zagrebu – Journal of the Zagreb Archaeological Museum


Archaeological News on Tumblr

Why Archeologists Hate Indiana Jones

The jungles of the Peten are hot and sweaty. Most of the best places for archeology are. Field seasons are especially hot, since they are always during the driest time of year so that the site doesn’t get flooded. Howler monkeys boom from the parched trees, which barely twitch during the windless days. Meanwhile, pasty grad students toil away in the hot sun, quietly picking away at a stucco relief or the markings on a stone pillar.

In this heat, it’s good to wear a hat, preferably something sturdy with a wide brim. Every archeology site in the world is littered with rugged people in wide-brimmed hats talking about long dead civilizations. Tulane archeologist Marcello Canuto, for instance, prefers the khaki, floppy variety. Walking back to camp with after a long day at one Northern Guatemalan site, I can’t help but make the obvious comparison.

“Oh God,” he groans, “Don’t even go there. Indiana Jones is not an archeologist.” Read more.

James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

Not Qualified to Comment

 

The image above came to my attention via the blog God of Evolution.

The sign really does help make an important point about scientific matters.

If you not only aren't sufficiently informed about biology to know that evolution does not claim that humans descended from babboons or any other species currently in existence, but you also don't grasp the difference between ancestors and descendants, then you are not qualified to comment on such a question.

I wonder, however, how many people who read this sign will recognize this, and will seek scientific information elsewhere. You need to actually know a language well, in order to tell whether someone else is speaking it well. And you need to know something about science to spot when someone is offering you pseudoscience.

And that's the big danger in the time we live in. If you start your process of gathering information by turning to charlatans, you may never realize that you have chosen deceivers as your authorities.

And of course the theology and Biblical interpretation reflected in the words on the sign is every bit as bad as the science and the word choice. Does this person not think that God made baboons? Does he or she not think that the descendants of entities created by God, through whatever process, are still themselves creations of God?

That religious voices may not be qualified to comment on matters of science or wording should be no surprise. But when they spout religious nonsense, it may not surprise anyone either, but it definitely should disappoint.

 

Archaeological News on Tumblr

French archaeologists find 2,000-year-old boomerang used by Gauls

Boomerangs are usually associated with Australian aborigines but these amazing wooden weapons have been found in Egypt, apparently dating back 2,000 years, and in Europe - the oldest one, which was found in a cave in Poland, being 30,000 years old.

They were apparently toys but now archaeologists have found what seems to be a 2,000-year-old boomerang on the beach at Cotentin and it was not used for play, Le Monde newspaper reports.

The stick doesn’t come back when you throw it, the archaeologists said, it was used as a weapon, to hunt.

The ancient Gauls probably used these boomerangs to hunt seagulls, the archaeologists believe. Read more.

CHS Fellowships Research Bulletin

The Tyrant’s Network: Appearances of Characters in the Letters of Phalaris

Citation with persistent identifier: Marquis, Emeline. “The Tyrant’s Network:  Appearances of Characters in the Letters of Phalaris.“ CHS Research Bulletin 2, no. 2 (2014). http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:hlnc.essay:MarquisE.The_Tyrants_Network_Appearances_of_Characters.2014 The letters of Phalaris are a fascinating object, both for their content and for their history. This epistolary fiction contains 148 letters attributed to Phalaris, the historical tyrant of sixth-century Sicily, who became a mythical figure and the archetype of a cruel ruler; the letters are all written in the first person (with the exception of Letter 57, the only instance of a correspondent’s reply) and are addressed to individuals as well as to different cities, their length varying from a few lines to a few pages. They describe the tyrant’s activities as a statesman, a military chief, and a private man, i.e. his dealings with his subjects, his enemies, his family, and friends, which they combine with general statements about the nature of tyranny. Due to their […] more

Tom Matrullo (Classics in Sarasota)

Helen at play

Two more marvels from the ever beguiling Helen. The passages have been reworked from Perseus and Showerman (Loeb) to approach their complexity. Thanks to Peter d'Epiro for his very helpful suggestions.

     Sic certe felix esse coacta forem.

190


Wrongs can grace those who suffer them. I surely could have been compelled to happiness. While it's new, let's struggle against this love barely begun! The kindling spark will abate with a little water. Love isn't steadfast in travelers; it wanders like themselves, and just when you feel that nothing could be more firm, it flees.


     Bella gerant fortestuParisemper ama!
255
     Utererutetursiqua puella sapit — 
260
You vaunt your valor, and recount your mighty acts: those looks betray your words. Your limbs are more apt for the delights of Venus than for the rude encounters of Mars. Let the strong wage war; you, Paris, always love! Assign Hector, whom you praise, to fight in your place. A different warfare suits those graceful motions. If I were bolder and savvier, I'd use them; any girl with taste would use them! Perhaps, conquered by time, I'll savor them yet -- casting off modesty, I'll give my hot yet hesitant hands to you.
Helen and Aphrodite

Perseus Digital Library Updates

Announcing the Arethusa Annotation Framework

Developers Gernot Höflechner, Robert Lichtensteiner and Christof Sirk, in collaboration with the Perseus Digital Library at Tufts (via the Libraries and the Transformation of the Humanities and Perseids projects) and the University of Leipzig’s Open Philology Project, have released Arethusa, a framework for linguistic annotation and curation. Arethusa was inspired by and extends the goals of the Alpheios Project, to provide a highly configurable, language-independent, extensible infrastructure for close-reading, annotation, curation and exploration of open-access digitized texts. While the initial release highlights support for morpho-syntactic annotation, Arethusa is designed to allow users to switch seamlessly between a variety of annotation and close-reading activities, facilitating the creation of sharable, reusable linguistic data in collaborative research and pedagogical environments.

grid

Arethusa is built on the angular.js javascript web application framework and provides a back-end independent infrastructure for accessing texts, annotations and linguistic services from a variety of sources. Extensibility is a guiding design goal — Arethusa includes tools for automatic generation of skeleton code for new features as plugins; detailed development guides are also currently in progress. We hope others will be able to reuse and build upon the platform to add support for other annotation types, languages and back-end repositories and workflow engines.

Arethusa is already deployed as a component of the Perseids platform, where it provides an annotation interface for morpho-syntactic analyses and will soon also act as a broker between the Perseids back-end (the Son of SUDA Online application) and various other front-end annotating and editing activities, including translation alignments, entity identification and text editing.

Screencasts are available that show how the Arethusa application can be used for syntactic diagram (treebank) and morphological analysis annotations on Perseids. Additional demos and slides will be made available soon which highlight additional features along with the architecture and design.

This project has been made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (Award LG0611032611), the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the European Social Fund. We also are indebted to Robert Gorman and Vanessa Gorman of the University of Nebrask and Giuseppe G. A. Celano of the University of Leipzig for their invaluable contributions to the design and testing of the platform.

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Digital Humanities and the Ancient World

Digital Humanities and the Ancient World
Biblical Archaeology Society Staff   •  08/13/2014
What would happen if the Pope’s library were accidentally burnt? How can we reconstruct and visualize ancient and medieval pilgrimage routes? Technology is changing the way we study and preserve texts and artifacts. In a series of web-exclusive articles written by scholars engaged in the Digital Humanities, learn how this growing field of study is helping to analyze textual and archaeological data—and how you can help.
 


 

Digital Humanities: An Introduction

Jewish-Iraqi-manuscriptsWhat if the Dead Sea Scrolls were damaged? What if the Pope’s library burned down? In “Digital Humanities: How Everyone Can Get a Library Card to the World’s Most Exclusive Collections Online,” George Washington University associate professor of history Diane H. Cline explores the research opportunities and potential impact of Digital Humanities projects. This new field not only preserves publications, it extends access to the humanities to anyone with Internet access.
Read “Digital Humanities: How Everyone Can Get a Library Card to the World’s Most Exclusive Collections Online” by Diane H. Cline >>
 


 

Mapping Technologies

pleiades-stoa-orgWant to follow a fourth-century pilgrim itinerary from Bordeaux via Constantinople to the Holy Land? Experiment with ancient travel times and their costs over land, sea and sand in the Roman Empire? University of Iowa assistant professor of classics Sarah E. Bond explains in “Map Quests: Geography, Digital Humanities and the Ancient World” how the Digital Humanities offers opportunities to explore, interact with and contribute to maps of the ancient world.
Read “Map Quests: Geography, Digital Humanities and the Ancient World” by Sarah E. Bond >>
 


 

Open Access to Digital Data

Open-Context-1Interested in exploring the results of archaeology projects directly from the researchers? Cutting-edge technology is helping archaeologists generate a tremendous amount of digital data each year. At the same time, the scientific community increasingly expects direct access to the data. In “Open Context: Making the Most of Archaeological Data,” Alexandria Archive Institute cofounders Sarah Whitcher Kansa and Eric Kansa describe Open Context, an open access, peer-reviewed data publishing service that has published over one million digital resources, from archaeological survey data to excavation documentation and artifact analyses.
Read “Open Context: Making the Most of Archaeological Data” by Sarah Whitcher Kansa and Eric Kansa >>
 


 

Making University Collections Accessible to All

CNERS-tabletMany university departments across the world have shelves and storerooms full of books, artifacts and research collected over several decades. What do you do when the “skeletons in your closet” are a box of 2,000-year-old artifacts? That was the question facing the University of British Columbia’s Department of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies. In “From Stone to Screen: Bringing 21st-Century Access to Ancient Artifacts,” members of the From Stone to Screen graduate student project at UBC discuss their ongoing efforts to create digital archives of their department’s artifact collection—making these fascinating objects accessible to a global audience online.
Read “From Stone to Screen: Bringing 21st-Century Access to Ancient Artifacts” >>
 

Open Access Journal: Vjesnik Arheološkog muzeja u Zagrebu - Journal of the Zagreb Archaeological Museum

[First posted in AWOL 10 August 2010. Updated 19 September 2014]

Vjesnik Arheološkog muzeja u Zagrebu - Journal of the Zagreb Archaeological Museum
ISSN: 0350-7165
http://hrcak.srce.hr/logo/168.jpg
Vjesnik Arheološkog muzeja u Zagrebu objavljuje znanstvene i stručne radove koji obrađuju širok raspon tema iz područja pretpovijesne, antičke i srednjovjekovne arheologije te arheologiji srodnih i komplementarnih znanstvenih grana. Serije: 1. tzv. "nulta serija" pod imenom Viestnik Narodnoga zamaljskoga muzeja u Zagrebu (1870-1876.); 2. Viestnik Hrvatskoga arkeologičkoga družtva (1879-1892.); 3. Vjesnik Hrvatskoga arheološkoga društva, nova serija (1895-1941/1942.); 4. Vjesnik Arheološkog muzeja u Zagrebu (1958-).

The Journal of the Zagreb Archaeological Museum publishes scientific and professional papers which cover broad range of topics in prehistorical, classical and medieval archaeology. Journal series: 1. Viestnik Narodnoga zamaljskoga muzeja u Zagrebu (1870-1876.); 2. Viestnik Hrvatskoga arkeologičkoga družtva (1879-1892.); 3. Vjesnik Hrvatskoga arheološkoga društva, nova serija (1895-1941/1942.); 4. Vjesnik Arheološkog muzeja u Zagrebu (1958-).

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James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

The Cross as Punctuation

Jonathan Bernier wrote an interesting blog post entitled “The Last Word.” Here’s the part that struck me most:

The problem lies not simply in how scriptures are being read but in how it is thought to function in church and Christian life. The entire premise is that if the scriptures are to be authoritative they must be the last word. They must be what settles the discussion, once and for all. Yet revisions of what scripture means to the faith community demonstrate that they do not settle discussions once and for all. So, let me offer a bold suggestion: the scriptures are authoritative not because they contain the last words for faith and practice but because they contain the first. They initiate the discussion, and as such they establish certain ways of thinking that will forever guide the discussion, but they are not a law book or criminal code that lays out in codified form all that one should do and think.

Under such an understanding Christian thought would look to the scriptures not so much for answers but for questions. And the Christian who looks at the scriptures thus will discover that a oddly-shaped question mark: not a squiggle and a dot, but rather a cross, for the cross is the punctuation mark next to any and all Christian reasoning. Not the cross as a metaphysical concept of atonement, etc., but rather the sign of a broken body, of the weak trampled by the strong. Christianity’s bold proclamation is that God sides not with the great and powerful but with the lowly and weak, and that those who are murdered will in the fullness of time be vindicated over those who killed them.

Click through to read the rest.

cross with question mark shadow

Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

The Khmer temples of Laos

A travel piece on Wat Phu in Laos and some other Buddhist temples in Pakse.

Wat Phu

Wat Phu

Climbing Khmer temple complex in Laos
Vientiane Times, via ANN/Cambodia Herald, 04 September 2014

The way to Vat Phou is so beautiful as the paths are lined with trees and greenery that takes on an extra special light in the nourishment of the wet season rains.

You can see villagers having fun planting rice, fishing in the Mekong River and enjoying selling local products that they collect in the forest.

If you want to view these scenes, you should rent a motorbike, which cost 60,000 kip per day, to make the 35 kilometre journey from Pakxe to Vat Phou Champassak.

On arrival at Vat Phou, local authorities offer tourists two options of walking to the top of the ruins themselves, a distance of around three kilometres, or they can take the easy option and make the journey by electric car for a cost of 20,000 kip.

Vat Phou offers three choices of stairs to its mountain temple. The going is easy early on but the stairs get more difficult as the grade gets steeper and it is quite a trek to the top of the mountain, which is 1,400 metres in height.

Full story here.

photo by:

Joint Library of the Hellenic & Roman Societies / Institute of Classical Studies Library

waugh


On the 19th September 86 A.D., the Emperor Antoninus Pius was born in Nemausus.  Born the son of Titus Aurelius Fulvus and later adopted by his predecessor Emperor Hadrian, Pius has been remembered for having a rather uneventful spell as emperor.  However, he did manage to enact extremely important legal reforms throughout the empire based on fairness and equality rather than the word of law.  Pius died in his seventy-fourth year.

If you are interested in reading about the Emperor, then we recommend you have a look at Cassius Dio’s, Roman History, Book 70 and the Historia Augusta, The Life of Antoninus Pius.


Happy Birthday Antoninus Pius!

 

Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

Iconic Ta Prohm trees to go

It’s a shame to see them go, but removing them seems necessary for the continued well-being of the temple (and not to mention the safety of visitors!). Four trees from the famed Ta Prohm temple will be removed because their continued existence within the temple structure destabilises it.

Ta Prohm Tree. Source: The Phnom Penh Post 20140902

Ta Prohm Tree. Source: The Phnom Penh Post 20140902

Temple trees to go: authority
Phnom Penh Post, 02 September 2014

Ta Prohm, the overgrown jungle temple of Tomb Raider fame, will lose four of its distinctive trees after government officials overseeing the Angkor park decided to remove them this week for safety reasons.

Three of the cotton-silk trees intertwined with the ruins are already dead and rotting on the inside, according to the Authority for the Protection and Management of Angkor and the Region of Siem Reap (APSARA).

Another, larger tree growing throughout one of the temple’s walls and careening sideways over the structure is only precariously held in place by a combination of gnarled roots, rope and scaffolding.

“We’ve tried for many years to prop it up … but when the wind is strong, it is very dangerous,” APSARA spokesperson Kerya Chau Sun said.

Full story here.

Archaeological News on Tumblr

Pharaoh-Branded Amulet Found at Ancient Copper Mine in Jordan

While exploring ancient copper factories in southern Jordan, a team of archaeologists picked up an Egyptian amulet that bears the name of the powerful pharaoh Sheshonq I.

The tiny artifact could attest to the fabled military campaign that Sheshonq I waged in the region nearly 3,000 years ago, researchers say.

The scarab (called that because it’s shaped like a scarab beetle) was found at the copper-producing site of Khirbat Hamra Ifdan in the Faynan district, some 31 miles (50 kilometers) south of the Dead Sea. Read more.

Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

Friday Varia and Quick Hits

We may have one more day of summer today with temperatures set to reach a balmy 86 degrees here in North Dakotaland. Do society a favor and don’t call it an “Indian Summer” or “Altweibersommer.” I’m just going to call it a warm day in late September. And, don’t worry, Grand Forks will be back to its sleepy, bucolic fall decline by the end of next week.

In the meantime, when you’re not enjoying the warm days and the gentle patter of a late summer rain, please do enjoy these quick hits and varia.  

IMG 1917I can groove to Duke.


Archaeological News on Tumblr

First eyewitness accounts of mystery volcanic eruption

The eruption occurred just before the 1815 Tambora volcanic eruption, which is famous for its overwhelming impact on climate worldwide, with 1816 given memorable names such as ’Eighteen-Hundred-and-Froze-to-Death’, the ‘Year of the Beggar’ and the ‘Year Without a Summer’ due to unseasonal frosts, crop failure and famine across Europe and North America. The extraordinary conditions are considered to have inspired literary works such Byron’s ‘Darkness’ and Mary Shelley’s ‘Frankenstein’.

However, the global deterioration of the 1810s into the coldest decade in the last 500 years began six years earlier, with another large eruption. In contrast to Tambora, this so-called ‘Unknown’ eruption apparently occurred unnoticed, with both its location and date a mystery. In fact, the ‘Unknown’ eruption was only recognized in the 1990s, from tell-tale markers in Greenland and Antarctic ice that record the rare events when volcanic aerosols are so violently erupted that they reach the Earth’s stratosphere. Read more.

AIA Fieldnotes

Jimmy Schryver, "The Petra Garden and Pool Complex"

Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
Sponsored by AIA-MN and Macalester College
Event Type (you may select more than one): 
lecture
Start Date: 
Thursday, March 26, 2015 - 6:00pm
AIA Society: 

Location

Name: 
Vanessa Rousseau
Call for Papers: 
no

Tombs, Sunken Ships and Historic Huts: Studying Ancient Wood Reveals Secrets from the Past

Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
Sponsored by AIA-MN and Macalester College
Event Type (you may select more than one): 
lecture
Start Date: 
Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 6:00pm
AIA Society: 

Location

Name: 
Vanessa Rousseau
Call for Papers: 
no

Tombs and Temples: Death, War and Remembrance on the Athenian Acropolis

Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
Sponsored by AIA-MN and the Art History department at the University of St. Thomas
Event Type (you may select more than one): 
lecture
Start Date: 
Friday, December 5, 2014 - 6:00pm

Lecture by Joan Breton Connelly. Read more »

AIA Society: 

Location

Name: 
Vanessa Rousseau
Call for Papers: 
no

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Amphipolis: Who Has Questions?

I'm going to do a post today about Amphipolis, to try to answer some of the questions people have asked and make a few other observations, but ... first the supermarket and laundry and ...

... and I will continue to try to answer questions asked in each post's comments, but if anyone has any other questions, please do continue to post them and I will do my best to answer them if I can!


Archaeological News on Tumblr

Crumbling tower in ancient Mongolian ruins offers clues about Khitan history

Japanese researchers who made the first comprehensive study in six decades of a crumbling brick tower from an 11th-century fortress town in eastern Mongolia say their findings shed light on the little-known nomadic Khitan people.

The tower is the centerpiece of ruins in Kherlen Bars, a settlement that dates to the Liao Dynasty (916-1125), when the Khitan flourished. The site is about 600 kilometers east of Ulan Bator, Mongolia’s capital.

A team of researchers from Nara University made a number of discoveries about the structure of the tower. They also found remnants of a mural that suggests the Khitan were more advanced than historians realized. Read more.

James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

What Kind of Drug is Religion?

Religion opiate or amphetamine

Karl Marx famously observed that religion was the opiate of the masses, meaning that it provided an escape from the harsh realities of life. This may well be true, but looking at the conflicts arising in the Middle East these days, I’m inclined to observe that religion is the amphetamine of the masses.

The quote comes from Tobias Haller’s blog post, “The Speed of God: Mainline Religion.”

Archaeological News on Tumblr

5 of 6 Syrian World Heritage sites 'exhibit significant damage'

image

In war-torn Syria, five of six World Heritage sites now “exhibit significant damage” and some structures have been “reduced to rubble,” according to new high-resolution satellite image analysis by the nonprofit, nonpartisan American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

The AAAS analysis, offering the first comprehensive look at the extent of damage to Syria’s priceless cultural heritage sites, was completed in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology’s Penn Cultural Heritage Center (PennCHC) and the Smithsonian Institution, and in cooperation with the Syrian Heritage Task Force. Funded by the National Science Foundation, the analysis provides authoritative confirmation of previous on-the-ground reports of damage to individual sites. Read more.

Archaeological News on Tumblr

Police evict, arrest protesters at Gatineau archeological site

GATINEAU — The “sacred fire” at a 3,000-year-old aboriginal archaeological site in Gatineau was stamped out and six people arrested Thursday when Gatineau police moved in to evict protesters who had been camping out in teepees for the past month.

The city obtained an injunction Thursday afternoon to remove the protesters and gave them a 6:45 deadline to clear out.

But they refused.

Roger Fleury, one of the organizers, had gone to court to ask for more time to prepare a defence. When he returned to the site, which the aboriginal protesters say is sacred, with the news that he had failed, he didn’t apologize. Tossing the injunction into the “sacred fire” at the centre of the campsite, he said:

“We’ll go to jail.” Read more.

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Mini Myrmidons ...


... oh let's just call an ant an ant!

I have to admit that plates and dishes by German artist Evelyn Bracklow would freak me out, but for those that are braver, they are available from her Etsy shop “La Philie” ...

For more about her see also Demilked here and here.

Jim Davila (Paleojudaica.com)

Sheinfeld, "Oral Performance and the Function of 4 Ezra"

SBL PAPER FROM 2012 BY SHAYNA SHEINFELD: Oral Performance and the Function of 4 Ezra, posted at the Biblical Performance Criticism website.

Lots more on 4 Ezra is here, here, here, here, and links.

Conversations with two DSS scholars

TWO INTERVIEWS with specialists in the Dead Sea Scrolls:

Eileen Schuller: Five questions for McMaster’s Dead Sea Scrolls expert (Dave Churchill, Hamilton Spectator).
McMaster professor and renowned Dead Sea Scrolls expert Eileen Marie Schuller has been named a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.

It's considered Canada's highest academic honour.

Schuller is one of only a handful of international researchers responsible for the scrolls' initial deciphering and publication. She is also author of "The Dead Sea Scrolls: What Have We Learned?" published in 2006.

Schuller belongs to the Ursuline Sisters, an order of Catholic nuns who work in education and health care. She has earned the moniker "the flying nun" among her McMaster colleagues because of all the travelling she does for her Dead Sea Scrolls work.

Her specialty within the scrolls is psalms, hymns and poetry, which she has translated extensively.

Here are five questions for Schuller.

[...]
Background on her election to the RSC is here.

Charlotte Hempel: Coffee Table Talk with Charlotte Hempel (podcast with Marginalia).
In this interview with MRB’s editor-in-chief Timothy Michael Law, Charlotte Hempel discusses how she began her career of study in the Dead Sea Scrolls, where the current challenges and prospects in the field lie, the new interdisciplinarity in Scrolls research, what we know and don’t know about the community at Qumran, her current research project on the diversity of literatures in the Second Temple period, and more.

[...]

Farrago

Graffito from Gazi

Costas Canakis discussed a number of graffiti from the Athenian district of Gazi at Language and the City in Berlin in August 2012. One item of note read:

ΤΟ GAY LIFESTYLE ΒΡΩΜΑΕΙ ΟΜΟΦΟΒΙΑ (which, when translated, is 'Gay lifestyle stinks of homophobia').

At the very least, a shift from Greek to Roman script is involved: 'Gay Lifestyle' has not been transliterated or transcribed. What kind of code-switch is this, if that is what it is?

Végh Zsuzsanna and Simon Zsolt (Agyagtábla, papirusz)

Posztdok helyek a Brown Egyetemen

Részeletek a felhívás szövegéből: 

Position Description
The Department of Egyptology and Assyriology at Brown University invites applications for a Postdoctoral Research Associate in Assyriology, Egyptology, or the material culture of Egypt or Ancient Western Asia. Candidates whose research interests complement those of current faculty are particularly encouraged to apply. The successful candidate will be appointed for one year beginning on 1 July 2015. Postdoctoral Research Associates are expected to pursue their own research and publications and are required to teach an undergraduate level course one semester and a graduate level course the other. Postdoctoral Research Associates are also expected to participate in the academic life of the department: for example, by involvement in research seminars and counseling graduate students in their research.

Qualifications
Candidates should have received their PhD from an institution other than Brown University after 1 July 2010.

Application Instructions
Candidates should submit a curriculum vitae, the names and addresses of three referees, and a letter of application detailing their research and teaching interests and explaining how their work fits with the
research agendas of the faculty in the department to <https://secure.interfolio.com/apply/26513>
before 1 January 2015. Candidates should have received their PhD from an institution other than Brown University from 1 July 2010 onward and have the PhD in hand by 30 June 2015 at the latest.

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Books: Michael Scott's Delphi

In case you guys are getting bored of Amphipolis and Augustus, I can highly recommend Michael Scott's Delphi, which I will get around to writing more about soon.

Meanwhile, don't forget that the poor serpent column ended up in the Hippodrome at Constantinople, and was chopped up there too and ... For photos of it and Ottoman images when it was still more or less 'whole' see: The Hippodrome in Constantinople.

Delphi: A History of the Center of the Ancient World - Amazon UK
Delphi: A History of the Center of the Ancient World - Amazon US

Bryn Mawr Classical Review

2014.09.39: A Commentary on Selected Speeches of Isaios. Mnemosyne, supplements. Monographs on Greek and Latin language and literature, 364

Review of Brenda Griffith-Williams, A Commentary on Selected Speeches of Isaios. Mnemosyne, supplements. Monographs on Greek and Latin language and literature, 364. Leiden; Boston: 2013. Pp. xx, 272. $141.00. ISBN 9789004258570.

2014.09.38: A Companion to Plutarch. Blackwell companions to the ancient world, 98

Review of Mark Beck, A Companion to Plutarch. Blackwell companions to the ancient world, 98. Malden, MA; Oxford; Chichester: 2014. Pp. xvi, 625. $195.00. ISBN 9781405194310.

2014.09.37: Neros Wirklichkeiten: zur Rezeption einer umstrittenen Gestalt. Litora classica, 7

Review of Christine Walde, Neros Wirklichkeiten: zur Rezeption einer umstrittenen Gestalt. Litora classica, 7. Rahden/Westf: 2013. Pp. vi, 354. €49.80 (pb). ISBN 9783867574778.

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

War Diggers Website Criticises UK Police


Still on the subject of the concerns of HAPPAH about the plague of British metal detectorists coming over to the continent and plundering World War One and World War Two sites and walking off with the stuff, regardless of the need to protect sites from such vandalism, here's a site aimed at those with an interest in buying artefacts from the Great War: "One stop resource for artefacts and information": www.westernfrontmilitaria.com. Items offered include:
"Pair of relic condition British cavalry spurs unearthed near Ypres in Flanders. A rare find...you don't see any for years and suddenly you locate two pairs in two different countries! A nice addition to any collection and now available in the website catalogue".["Relic condition" - translate as 'dug up']; "Interesting find from the site of an artillery emplacement near Poeringhe outside Ypres in Flanders [...]".
There are lots more ground-dug objects figured.... In not one of the examples I looked at was any mention of any documentation from the landowners signing ownership over to the finder or any information about documentation of the following of proper export/import regulations of dugup cultyural property.

The St Albans raid is described there as
Typical UK Plod overkill... and I speak as ex police. [...] I think I sold him that granatenwerfer in one of the pics. Pity they couldnt find time to investigate [...*] gangs gang-raping young white girls in our towns and cities. An easy, soft target. It makes me laugh when they go into panic mode and cordon off areas and evacuate in case anything is live.
Another member Nick Wotherspoon from Manchester agrees that the UK police have their priorities wrong:
Not the first time it has happened and the gutter press just love it and lap it up - getting to be a bit of a vicious circle PS What is a "Heritage Crime" ?
Stealing historical artefacts from protected historical sites or without the required permission, removing them extra-legally from the source country and selling them on would be three. Seventeen million ponds of PAS "outreach" really seen to be paying off there ...

[*] Hate speech deleted. See what kind of people are among those who collect relics of "Our" Past.

Hat tip to Nigel Swift for link.

War Digger Named


The St Albans militaria collector whose collection was searched by police for potentially dangerous items was named yesterday in the Daily Mail. There's a Facebook page for a person of the same name full of militaria, including Nazi uniform insignia.

Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

NURMAP, in una app la mappa dei nuraghi della Sardegna

nurmap-screenshotE' stata presentata in occasione della Prima Festa della Civiltà Nuragica che si svolgerà domenica 21 settembre a Bonorva, località Mariani- Sa Pala Larga, organizzata in collaborazione con l'Istituto Italiano dei Castelli e il Comune di Bonorva l'applicazione del geoportale NURNET per la conoscenza dei nuraghi della Sardegna.

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Focus on UK Metal Detecting: World War Two in my Conservatory


Detecting for World War militaria with dirty conservatory full of tat, t-dropping and an upward inflection. Dan Mackay posted his first rambling incoherent detecting video from his 'workroom' (dirty conservatory) in November 2012.

ERH Video 1 (Relic Room Introduction)

We see all the artefacts laid out and in boxes and on the floor. "Most of these bits are from a local airfield" he says. "Lots of German Prisoner of War Camp finds", "there is just stuff on shelves everywhere". Not a single item is accompanied by any kind of labelling of findspots which means by his hoiking, he is not only emptying historical sites of evidence, but he is turning that taken evidence into geegaws for his selfish pleasure and here, his five-minute-of-fame 'show and tell'.There is material on those shelves that would be difficult to explain as UK finds. In the comments he mentions in an off-hand way "Its weird the way they turn up in odd places. The first time I found one was in Normandy..". Note the comments about two fellow detectorists in the course of the short presentation. He is ungrammatically miffed that "I take over an entire room and fill it full of rust and the kids then put there bikes/scooters in...". But he gets some supportive messages from fellow 'War Digging' Deep Digger Dan who we've met before on this blog. There is a closeup of explosive extraction tools at 71s, suggesting he does this with bravado just at the back of the house. He also mentions material lying around the conservator "waiting to be cleaned and emptied".



The second film in the series )(above) shows him on another military site ("obviously I won't mention where it is, but it was a US Army hospital camp") which soon produced "a old penny" (dermatitis alert) before they were thrown off the site by somebody (so, did they have written permission and when they were told to leave, did they keep the finds, or hand them over?). In connection with that There is a typical indication of tekkie attitudes of entitlement at the end of the video.



In video three - the self-labelled "Extreme relic hunters" visit two PoW camps... and in the course of it hoik out an unsnapped German dogtag and a load of other items. At the end you see him in a woolly hat in his conservatory full of items he'd taken from other sites, showing how he'd "made the explosives safe" himself (in the conseratory?) by drilling and cutting into them. What a tonker.  At the end of the film he blithely announces that the next trip is to hoik stuff in Belgium. 

There seems to be no video of that, but the comments under the other three videos reveal that:
Well after returning from Belgium my wife informs me that some [...] who watched my videos on youtube phone the police and reported me having 'dangerous' items. So they come round and visit, quiz my wife and they left. I'm 99% certain who called them, as this sad pathetic individual is very jealous of my and my teams ability to be able to find nicer items in two years that he has been doing in much longer. Sad pathetic jealous little man, poor you.
No, I think anyone who goes artefact hunting abroad, in France and Belgium, comes back with historical artefacts (how did they enter the country?) and stores items of potentially unstable military hardware in their conservatory where he "empties" them with hand tools deserves to be reported and at least visited by the police.

We are reminded of the comment by HAPPAH about the plague of British metal detectorists coming over to the continent and plundering World War One and World War Two sites and walking off with the stuff. It seems we have here a not-so-contrite confession of one of these artefact hunters. How do these people go about arranging permissions in France and Belgium? Are the UK police sufficiently informed of the laws of neighbouring countries on metal detecting in order to recognize when a crime has been committed by a British citizen abroad? And what about French and Belgian export legislation concerning cultural property? In the light of episodes of 'Artefacthuntery tourism', maybe the PAS should be among those informing the UK public and law enforcement of these legislative niceties?

Hat tip to Nigel Swift for the links


Focus on UK Metal detecting: Worried About 'Heritage Watch'


Heritage Watch begun last year. The scheme hopes to protect historical artefacts and heritage sites by improving communication between people who live near historical sites and monuments who have an interest in the county’s heritage, and the police. The police are now looking to increase membership of Heritage Watch as much as possible.
As Andy Bliss puts it:“Members of the public can help us to tackle heritage crime by joining Heritage Watch. People who live close to historical sites and those who have an awareness of our local history tend to frequent the county’s areas of historical interest more often and are therefore likely to notice anything suspicious or out of the ordinary. Through joining Heritage Watch, we hope the public will become the ‘eyes and ears’ of these precious sites and artefacts and report anything suspicious to us.
For some reason, some UK metal detectorists see this as an ominous development. Over on a metal detecting forum near you, member "timesearch" ('Thu Sep 18, 2014 5:38 am ') - referring to the St Albans and Bicester collectable militaria busts - suggests to fellow detectorists: 'You could find yourself in a similar position.'.
 I've now read all of this since posting and it has implications which aren't obvious given the subject, so it is worth reading every word, including the fact that English Heritage, police and Archaeologists are inviting the public to join a heritage watch organisation. Someone is sending a very strong message to the detecting community.
Actually I think they are sending a very strong message to all who are passionately interested in history and in the protection of historical sites and monuments that we can all do something to help. It also, I guess sends out a very strong message to those whose inclination it may be to conduct illegal activities on such sites. Metal detectorists within the law, surely, have no reason to oppose such a move - indeed one might ask why they are not in the first ranks of its members. 

PAS and their "hervorragend nationale Wissenschaft"


Today, as the UK holds a referendum to decide the future of itself, it seems worth recalling the gruesomely painful penultimate episode (7) of the second series of "Britain’s Secret Treasures" which dealt with Treasure Trove Scotland. This seemed determined to make as many gratuitous mentions of Scottish-English union as could be fitted into a half-hour ostensibly-archaeology programme. Yuk !
 I've pointed out the Kossinnist roots of other things the PAS and its supporters do with archaeological artefacts, here they go the whole hog, Vorgeschichte - eine hervorragend nationale Wissenschaft in all its dubious glory."Topical" reference is made to the upcoming referendum about Scottish independence, breaking the Union. The archaeological artefacts are dragged into the argument, explaining how the United Kingdom is "not such a bad thing", after all - the narrativisation goes - just a few decades after Cullodden, the archaeologists insist their stories show that "the Scots" were quite happy to be in it. So it is that the next find too is roped-into the feelgood narrative:
A second treasure found in the same area is also evidence of improving relationships between the Highlanders’ and British soldiers. Treasure hunter Jack Mackay found a belt buckle from a soldier’s uniform in the fields around the fort last year. The buckle was dated as being from 50 years after Culloden when Britain was at war with France and Napoleon. On the badge is the name of a regiment called the Fort William volunteers made up of local Scottish men. So just half a century after being defeated by the British Army, the Scottish Highlanders were volunteering to fight for them suggesting they had finally accepted a unified Britain.[...] Michael said: “It’s a new world now as I gaze out on a tranquil Scotland where in 2014 the people will vote on whether to maintain the union. These objects illustrate a crucial stage in the long running relationship between England and Scotland and they also demonstrate how old enmity can melt away to be recast as friendly rivalry.”
 Kossinna in his grave is beaming delightedly with his face turned towards Bloomsbury. Archaeology in support of imperialism.

Stephen Chrisomalis (Glossographia)

Review: Cerulo, Never saw it coming

Cerulo, Karen. 2006. Never saw it coming: cultural challenges to envisioning the worst. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 336 pp.

Reviewed by Michael Thomas (Wayne State University)

Evelyn Waugh, a notoriously prickly Catholic satirist, was once asked by his friend Nancy Mitford how he could be so cruel and still call himself Christian, to which he replied, “You have no idea how much nastier I would be if I was not a Catholic. Without supernatural aid I would hardly be a human being.” This pithy anecdote is useful to keep in mind when reading Karen Cerulo’s Never Saw it Coming, for it colorfully illustrates a challenge at the heart of any project seeking to evaluate the relative influence of inferred cognitive or ideological inputs on behavioral outputs.

Cerulo’s is an interesting book for a number of reasons; the curious reader is sure to find it valuable wherever they may stand in relation to its sometimes nebulous premises and impressionistic exposition. That is to say, the book primarily articulates its thesis through offering a fair amount of statistical information and some well formulated examples, though at the expense of some specificity with regard to the concepts and mechanisms underlying the phenomenon itself. Cerulo’s bold attempt at synthesizing cognitive and social theory to explain an interactive social phenomenon she calls “positive asymmetry” is less of an analytical argument than an expansive theoretical hypothesis, and so for this reason the lack of specificity may be forgivable given the scope and complexity of the central claim.

According to Cerulo, positive asymmetry functions as a bias toward privileging positive outcomes in decision-making, which can have an ultimately negative effect in that this phenomenon can occlude imagining “worst case” scenarios. The positive asymmetry is, Cerulo insists, pervasive in American, but not only American, culture and can partially explain the inability of institutions or individuals to foresee “worst case” scenarios, or, more accurately, “especially bad” scenarios. As pervasive as this phenomenon is, however, it is not universal and Cerulo is commendably sensitive to identifying where, and under what conditions, it does not apply. Aside from exceptional circumstances, this widespread failure of imagination leaves organizations and individuals vulnerable to any number of potential failure modes.

Essentially, Cerulo’s thesis is that the structure of human cognition relative to classification and inference is such that in the event of uncertainty, such as in future planning or decision making, the mind will categorize according to “best fit”. Relying on the inductive model of the mind, the “best fit” refers to a classification scheme wherein the most salient instance of a category is considered the most representative and so inferences regarding candidate members of some category are made in relation to that exemplar. Her thesis is built upon the model Eleanor Rosch advances, sometimes called prototype theory or exemplar theory, and is typically formulated in contrast to deductive theory theories such as those of Bob Reider and Doug Medin. What this means in practice is that insofar as negative circumstances, and the effects of negative circumstances, are rendered variously insignificant, they cannot participate in constituting classification criteria. For example, where deviant persons relative to the norms of some cultural milieu are ostracized, shunned, or banished, they are no longer salient. This lack of salience prohibits their inclusion in the category “person” so that the “best fit” for “person” is invariably skewed toward positive representation. Subsequent evaluations under conditions of uncertainty thus skew inferences away from “worst cases”.

This model of cognition allows Cerulo the necessary structure to integrate cultural practice, habitus, relationships of power, and social norms into the process of drawing inferences. Cerulo’s description of positive asymmetries at work in scientific measurement serves as a concise starting point for STS scholars interested in exploring the relationship of cognition and laboratory practice. She addresses the structure by which quality standards embody the positive asymmetry in all variety of forms familiar to social scientists such as power or ideology, but throughout the book she provides a deluge of examples, and it is here that the reader sees most starkly the compromise in specificity for the effect of breadth. Cerulo’s examples are numerous and presented in dizzying modalities. Statistical samples, historical narratives, pedagogical anecdotes, mythology, and case studies are but a few of the means by which positive asymmetry is presented. The technique is effective and nearly makes the reader forget exactly what the ontological status of a positive asymmetry actually is. It is of course a social phenomenon, but of what sort? And what does that mean? It is no doubt an interactive feedback effect of particular social forms and cognitive architecture, but the dynamics are fuzzy and one gets confused trying to track the deliberate modulations between “best” or “worst” being used as (1) normative evaluations relative to human welfare and (2) descriptive accounts of classification membership. Consider an admittedly glib counter example to Cerulo’s example taken from competitive diving. Cerulo discusses quality metrics with regard to competitive diving, but what is a “worst case dive” given (1) the diver performs the dive exceptionally well but suffers a heart attack upon such exertion or (2) a diver decides to withdraw from the competition because he feels he needs rest. Cerulo’s account cannot distinguish because the unit of analysis is never clearly defined.

So one question inevitably emerges, how do you know when you are observing an asymmetry? Thinking back to the Evelyn Waugh quote above, there is no clear objective synchronic measure by which one might determine the relative position of some response. Worst cases can always be worse, and best cases better.

The four case studies Cerulo provides don’t seem to help. For example, in chapter six Cerulo discusses Exceptions to the Rule, one such being the Phoenix document that warned of the 9/11 attack. Cerulo attributes the failure of adequate response to the institutionally structural positive asymmetry, though she notes that the administration was distracted by establishing strategic National Missile Defense (NMD), an action undertaken, if mistakenly, to prevent a clearly worse scenario. The problem, then, was not one of asymmetry, but of improper risk assessment. Unfortunately, an asymmetry analyses can only be performed ex post facto, which invites the question, “How is this theory falsifiable?” An example of a failure mode despite negative asymmetry would go a long way to outlining the extent to which her argument operates, lest it be regarded as an inverse tautology where positive outcomes must equal negative asymmetry.

The book closes with both an account of the structural attributes inhibiting or cultivating negative asymmetry and a tentative plan for achieving balanced perspectives in organizations. If one accepts the premises that (1) positive and negative asymmetry describe actual phenomena and (2) these phenomena are causally decisive, then one will find her propositions interesting to ponder, though interest alone may not suffice to traverse the inferential distance between her data and her proposals. In all, this book tackles an important topic of interest to those in the cognitive, political, and social sciences though ultimately readers may find themselves less than satisfied. A less ambitious project, or more narrowly constrained subject matter, may have permitted a more precise understanding of the relationship between cognition and culture relative to quality evaluation.


Filed under: Anthropology, Guest post, Reviews

Francesca Tronchin (Classical Archaeology News)

sashastergiou: Shortly After Exhumation on the Acropolis. The...



sashastergiou:

Shortly After Exhumation on the Acropolis. The Calf-Bearer and the Kritios Boy . Unknown Artist. Ca. 1865. Albumen silver print from glass negative.

Ancient Art

Olmec monuments. Left is Monument 6, one of 8 colossal heads...



Olmec monuments.

Left is Monument 6, one of 8 colossal heads found at San Lorenzo Tenochtitlan. To the right we can see Monument 52, which is a seated Olmec were-jaguar sculpture from San Lorenzo Tenochtitlan, Veracruz. 

Artefacts courtesy of & currently located at the National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico. Photo taken by Xuan Che.

September 18, 2014

Archaeology Magazine

Byzantine Monastery Unearthed in Israel

JERUSALEM—A walled compound dating to the Byzantine period has been discovered west of Jerusalem, in the neighborhood of Bet Shemesh. The compound, which has residential and large-scale industrial areas, may have been used as a monastery. “The finds indicate the local residents were engaged in wine and olive oil production for their livelihood,” excavation director Irene Zilberbod of the Israel Antiquities Authority told the Xinhua News Agency. Several colorful mosaics were found in the residential areas—one featured a cluster of grapes surrounded by flowers and set in a geometric frame. Two ovens were also uncovered. “The magnificent mosaic floors, windows, and roof tile artifacts, as well as the agricultural-industrial installations inside the dwelling compound, are all known to us from numerous other contemporary monasteries,” Zilberbod said. To read about a recent, similar discovery, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "Byzantine Mosaics Discovered in Israel."

 

Thibaut Castelli (Spartokos a Lu)

L’histoire militaire et la guerre dans le Bosphore Cimmérien

Vinogradov, Ju. A. et V. A. Goroncharovskij (2008) : Военная история и Военное дело Боспора Киммерийского (VI в. до н. э. — середина III в. н. э.) / Voennaja istorija i Voennoe delo Bospora Kimmerijskogo (VI v. do n. é. — seredina III v. n. é.), Saint-Pétersbourg [L’histoire militaire et la guerre dans le Bosphore Cimmérien (VIe s. av. n. è. – milieu du IIIe s. de n. è.)].

Ce livre retrace l’histoire militaire de ce grand royaume conquérant qu’était le royaume du Bosphore de la colonisation grecque au IIIe s. av. J.-C.  Il s’intéresse aux différents aspects de cette histoire : les unités, l’équipement, les tactiques, les fortifications, les guerres…

Le livre : http://www.archeo.ru/izdaniya-1/vagnejshije-izdanija/pdf/Vinogradov_Goroncharovskij2008.pdf


Archaeological News on Tumblr

Divers get final look at lost Franklin ship before exploration called off for this year

ABOARD CCGS SIR WILFRID LAURIER—The long-lost Franklin wreck has so many stories to tell after some 160 years on the bottom that even seasoned underwater archeologists have trouble taking it all in.

The divers got their second close look Thursday, their last until next year at a site so rich in information and relics that they’re calling it an archaeologist’s dream.

“This is going to rank as one of the biggest discoveries and studies in the field of underwater archeology,” said Marc-Andre Bernier, a 25-year veteran of diving on shipwrecks. He heads the Parks Canada team.

The archeologists won’t say if they think the wreck is HMS Erebus or HMS Terror. They insist on taking that, and every other step, slowly. Read more.

Archaeology Magazine

Bronze Age Fulacht Fiadh Excavated in County Sligo

Ireland-Bronze-Age-TroughCOUNTY SLIGO, IRELAND—Part of a fulacht fiadh, or 4,000-year-old box-like structure, is being studied on Ireland’s Coney Island. Eamonn Kelly, director of Irish antiquities at the National Museum, thinks it may have been used for bathing or cooking during the Bronze Age, when the stone-lined pit would have been filled with water and heated with hot stones. “It tells us that people walked the beach here 3,000 or 4,000 years ago, searched for large stone slabs, and carefully built this structure. Many other archaeological sites probably await discovery on Coney,” Ciran Davis, an archaeology student who alerted researchers, told The Irish Times. Radiocarbon dating should offer the team more information. “It makes us wonder why they would have wanted to heat saltwater,” added Marion Dowd of the Institute of Technology Sligo. To read more about fulachtaí fia, read ARCHAEOLOGY's "Letter From Ireland: Mystery of the Fulacht Fiadh." 

 

Prehistoric Goldsmiths May Have Been Children

Bronze-Age-Gold-Dagger-StudsWILTSHIRE, ENGLAND—Researchers think children may have been responsible for embellishing the finely decorated weapons and jewelry discovered in the early nineteenth century at the Bush Barrow burial mound near Stonehenge, since sharp eyesight would have been required to cover a wooden dagger handle with 140,000 tiny gold pins. “Only children and teenagers, and those adults who had become myopic naturally or due to the nature of their work as children, would have been able to create and manufacture such tiny objects,” eye expert Ronald Rabbetts told The Guardian. The largest concentration of such decorated daggers has been found in northwestern France, where the children may have lived and worked. Rabbetts thinks that the gold workers would have eventually been disabled by their task. To read more about discoveries at Stonehenge, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "The Henge Builders."

 

Dienekes' Anthropology Blog

23andMe mega-study on different American groups

It's great to see that the massive dataset of 23andMe was used for a study like this that seeks to capture the landscape of ancestry of different American groups.

First, distribution of ancestry in African Americans:


The higher fraction of African ancestry in the south and of European ancestry in the north, shouldn't be very surprising. There are some interesting loci of higher "Native American" ancestry; most African Americans don't seem to have a lot of this ancestry, but some apparently do.

Second, distribution of ancestry in "Latinos":


To my eye, this seems like more African ancestry in the eastern parts (presumbly from Caribbean-type Latinos?) and more Native American ancestry in the west.

Third, distribution of ancestry in European Americans:


Overall, it seems that relatively few (less than 5%) of European Americans have more than 2% either African or Native American ancestry in any of the states, so the breakdown of European ancestry into various subgroups  is perhaps more interesting.

The distribution of African ancestry in European and African Americans is also interesting:


The existence of "African Americans" with virtually no African ancestry and of "European Americans" with as much as half African ancestry is probably due to either misreporting or some quite strange self-perception issues. The bulk of the African ancestry in European Americans seems to be in the sub-10% range (equivalent to less than 1 great grandparent). It is possible that many of these individuals might not even be aware of the existence of such ancestors.

bioRxiv doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/009340

The genetic ancestry of African, Latino, and European Americans across the United States.

Katarzyna Bryc, Eric Durand, J Michael Macpherson, David Reich, Joanna Mountain

Over the past 500 years, North America has been the site of ongoing mixing of Native Americans, European settlers, and Africans brought largely by the Trans-Atlantic slave trade, shaping the early history of what became the United States. We studied the genetic ancestry of 5,269 self-described African Americans, 8,663 Latinos, and 148,789 European Americans who are 23andMe customers and show that the legacy of these historical interactions is visible in the genetic ancestry of present-day Americans. We document pervasive mixed ancestry and asymmetrical male and female ancestry contributions in all groups studied. We show that regional ancestry differences reflect historical events, such as early Spanish colonization, waves of immigration from many regions of Europe, and forced relocation of Native Americans within the US. This study sheds light on the fine-scale differences in ancestry within and across the United States, and informs our understanding of the relationship between racial and ethnic identities and genetic ancestry.

Link

Brice C. Jones

A Christian Amulet Containing the Gospel of John and a Female Figure

Picture
Ed. princ. Franco Maltomini, “340. Amuleto con NT Ev. Jo. 1, 1-11,” in Kölner Papyri (P. Köln), vol. 8 (eds. Michael Gronewald, Klaus Maresch, and Cornelia Römer; Opladen: Westdeutscher Verlag, 1997), 82-95.

P.Köln 8.340, a long amulet containing both text and images, was designed as a request for healing and protection. It begins by appealing to a lengthy passage of scripture (John 1:1-11), followed by an invocation of the name of God, requesting that he send his angel to chase away sickness, evil spirits, the evil eye, and “every snare of humanity.” I am currently working on this amulet, which has a number of interesting features. Here is the text, following the NT portion, in translation (my own):

"I call upon you God, and Mary the God-bearer, Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, that you might send your angel who presides over the healing of those who wear this adjuration [amulet] and implore him to chase away each and every illness and infirmity, every unclean spirit, every evil eye, every snare of humanity. I banish you by the glorious name of the Lord forever and ever. Amen, amen, amen.”    

On the backside—in this case, we cannot speak of recto and verso because overlapping patches of papyrus strips preclude such identification—there are two drawn figures, both standing, depicted as praying in the orantes position, i.e., with their hands raised. In this post, I would like to correct the interpretation about one of these figures by the editor, F. Maltomini. According to Maltomini, there is a face superimposed onto the chest of the second standing figure.[1] He describes it as lacking hair, eyebrows, eyeballs, mouth, chin, and neck. The eye sockets are described as tiny and round and the nose as being constructed by a line beginning at the top part of the forehead extending down the bottom of the face and finally curving off to the right. Maltomini wrestles with the identification of this “face,” and concludes by suggesting that it is “probably the person for whose healing the two stand praying their prayers.”[2] 

The problems associated with the identification of this superimposed “face,” however, can be easily resolved: what Maltomini describes as a “face” is clearly, in fact, an image of a woman’s breasts. This would explain, then, why this “face” lacks hair, eyeballs, eyebrows, mouth, and chin, and why the "nose" is represented by a long curved line. This identification is further secured by the fact that the standing figure has long, wavy hair; even the editor admits that this must be a female figure on this basis. The breasts are somewhat similar in appearance to the breasts depicted in another Christian amulet, P.Oxy. 8.1077, but are drawn at more of an angle.

Picture
P.Köln 8.340
Picture
P.Oxy. 8.1077
Does the inclusion of a female figure suggest that the owner of this amulet was a woman? Perhaps it does, although it is difficult to say who the first (presumably male) figure might be and his relation to the female figure. In my study alone I have see at least two other amulets that were clearly owned by women (P.Oxy. 8.1077 and P.Oxy. 8.1151). Nevertheless, the participial phrase τὸν φοροῦντα ("the one who bears" [the amulet]) in ll. 41-42 of this amulet seems to preclude the possibility of a female owner of the amulet, since it is masculine. 

One note on the NT text. If the owner of our amulet purchased it from a ritual specialist (i.e., a church leader), then this may mean that the text was copied from an actual manuscript, although we have no way of proving this, of course. Alternatively, since the Gospel of John was apparently popular in Egypt—for example, a high number of manuscripts of John were discovered at Oxyrhynchus—its text may have been part of the oral culture of the Christian community in which this amulet was produced and used. Either way, P.Köln 8.340 contributes to our knowledge of Egyptian Christianity in more ways than one and it, like many amulets, deserves the attention of early Christian scholars.

[1] Maltomini’s full description of this figure runs as follows: “Al di sotto di questa figura è rappresentato un orante. Il viso, appena abbozzato, si sovrappone a parte del petto della figura precedente. La linea del contorno non appare chiusa in alto sulla testa; assenti i capelli; gli occhi sono piccoli e rotondi, senza pupille e senza sopracciglia; il naso è constituito da una lunga linea che si inizia nella parte alta della fronte, scende dapprima verticale per poi piegare verso destra. Bocca, mento e parte del collo sono scomparsi in una lacuna. Il tronco è rettangolare; di alcune linee irregolari che vi appaiono all'interno non so ravvisare il significato preciso (panneggio?). Le braccia sono sollevate nel gesto della preghiera, più distese di quelle del primo orante, e vengono ad incorniciare la figura centrale. Non si distinguono gli arti inferiori” (Maltomini, “340,” 95).

[2] My translation of “…probabilmente la persona per la cui guarigione…i due oranti levano la loro preghiera,” (Maltomini, “340,” 95).

Open Access Archaeology

Open Access Archaeology Digest #545

Excellent Open Access (free to read) articles:

The Shell Bead Assemblage at CA-SDI-39: Evidence for Interregional Exchange at a Major Coastal Site in La Jolla, California
http://bit.ly/1mhk4wv

The Confessor’s Shrine at Westminster Abbey
http://bit.ly/1bVfbR0

A GIS-based archaeological decision-support model for Cultural Resource Management
http://bit.ly/1mhk4MX

[LATE PLEISTOCENE AND EARLY HOLOCENE FORAGER ORGANIZATIONS IN SOUTHEAST ASIA] Using community, composition and structural variation in terminal Pleistocene vertebrate assemblages to identify human hunting behaviour at the Niah caves, Borneo
http://bit.ly/18Ur61t

Learn more about Open Access and Archaeology at: http://bit.ly/YHuyFK

AIA Fieldnotes

His Excellency Ambassador Vladimir Drobnjak of Croatia A Headless Empress and the Suken Scraper

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The Archaeology Committee is sincerely honoured to present His Excellency Ambassador Vladimir Drobnjak of Croatia. Ambassador Drobnjak discusses two extraordinary recent discoveries in the order of their reappearance: a marble Roman Empress and a bronze Greek Athlete. These splendid finds represent his Nation’s rich Classical heritage beginning as a Hellenic trading venue. Read more »

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Archaeology Magazine

Genetic Study Reveals Third Group of European Ancestors

CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS—A new genetic study by researchers from Harvard Medical School and the University of Tübingen suggests that early farmers from the Near East and indigenous hunter-gatherers were joined by a group known as Ancient North Eurasians as the ancestors of modern Europeans. The team analyzed the DNA of more than 2,300 modern people from around the world, and the DNA of eight ancient hunter-gatherers and one early farmer whose remains were recovered in Sweden, Luxembourg, and Germany. Previously gathered genetic sequences of humans from the same time period, including Otzi the Iceman, were also used in the study. “There was a sharp genetic transition between the hunter-gatherers and the farmers, reflecting a major movement of new people into Europe from the Near East,” David Reich of Harvard Medical School told Science Daily. The DNA of the two known Ancient North Eurasians, whose remains were discovered in Siberia, wasn’t found in either the hunter-gatherers or the early farmers, but nearly all Europeans have ancestors from all three groups. “The Ancient North Eurasian ancestry is proportionally the smallest component everywhere in Europe, never more than 20 percent, but we find in in nearly every European group we’ve studied and also in populations from the Caucasus and Near East,” he explained. (The same Ancient North Eurasian group has been linked to the ancestry of Native Americans.) An even older lineage called the Basal Eurasians, the ancestors of the ancient Near Eastern farmers, was discovered as well. “This deep lineage of non-African ancestry branched off before all the other non-Africans branched off from one another. Before Australian Aborigines and New Guineans and South Indians and Native Americans and other indigenous hunter-gatherers split, they split from Basal Eurasians,” Reich said. To read more on genetic lineages of Europeans, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "Seeds of Europe's Family Tree."

 

Archaeological News on Tumblr

Tlatilco burial artefacts reveal Olmec connection

The National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City, houses archaeological artefacts from across the country. Among the displayed material is a remarkable assemblage recovered from the Pre-classic site of Tlatilco in the 1960s.

Between 1962 and 1967 the anthropologist Arturo Romano Pacheco conducted four seasons of excavation at the Tlatilco, State of Mexico. 213 burials contained rich offerings and grave goods, among which 154, part of a set of ten, was recovered intact for display in the Pre-classic Central Highlands room of the Museum.

The Tlatilco site is noted for its high quality pottery pieces, many featuring Olmec iconography, and its figurines, including Olmec-style “baby-face” figurines. Read more.

AIA Fieldnotes

Human Ecodynamics in the North Atlantic: A Collaborative Model of Humans and Nature through Space and Time

Author Ramona Harrison and Ruth A. Maher (eds.)

In Human Ecodynamics in the North Atlantic: A Collaborative Model of Humans and Nature through Space and Time, Ramona Harrison and Ruth A. Maher have compiled a series of separate research projects conducted across the North Atlantic region that each contribute greatly to anthropological archaeology. This book assembles a regional model through which the reader is presented with a vivid and detailed image of the climatic events and cultures which have occupied these seas and lands for roughly a 5000-year period. Read more »

Publisher Lexington Books
ISBN: 
0739185470
Date PublishedOctober 2014

All Mesopotamia

massarrah: Brick Stamp of Naram-Sîn This pottery stamp for...



massarrah:

Brick Stamp of Naram-Sîn

This pottery stamp for bricks records a royal inscription of the Old Akkadian ruler Naram-Sîn (r. 2254-2218 BCE), the grandson of the founder of the Akkadian empire, Sargon. Naram-Sîn is famous for having been the first known Akkadian ruler to deify himself during his own lifetime, and later legends about the Kings of Akkad tell cautionary tales about his hubris.

The inscription above, written in Old Akkadian cuneiform, commemorates the construction of the temple to Sîn, the moon god. (Source)

Old Akkadian, 2254-2218 BCE.

British Museum.

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Digitales Forum Romanum

Digitales Forum Romanum
http://www.digitales-forum-romanum.de/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Phase-L_Viewpoint-BeckOst13-760x338.jpg
Forschungs- & Lehrprojekt des Winckelmann-Instituts der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
in Kooperation mit dem Exzellenzcluster TOPOI


Das antike Forum Romanum gehört zu den Hauptattraktionen eines jeden Rombesuchs. Täglich erkunden hunderte von Besuchern das Forum Romanum und lassen sich von der stimmungsvollen Ruinenlandschaft und der historischen Bedeutung dieses Ortes faszinieren: Hier lag das öffentlich-politische Zentrum der antiken Metropole, hier wurde Politik gemacht und Geschichte geschrieben – und entsprechend pulsiert hier für uns heutzutage die Vergangenheit des antiken Roms in einer ganz besonderen Intensität. Doch angesichts der idyllischen Ruinenlandschaft, als welche sich die Ausgrabungsstätte heutzutage präsentiert, fällt es schwer, sich ein wirkliches Bild von diesem antiken Platz zu machen: Wie erlebten ihn die Menschen in der Antike, wie präsentierte er sich als Bühne des politischen Handelns und der gesellschaftlichen Kommunikation, und wie funktionierte er überhaupt konkret als öffentliches Zentrum dieser einzigartigen antiken Metropole? Es sind diese Fragen, mit denen die Ausgrabungsstätte ihre Besucher oftmals alleine lässt. Und es sind die Fragen, auf die wiederum die Klassische Archäologie seit jeher mit Hilfe von Rekonstruktionen Antworten zu geben versucht.

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  • Ancient Peoples

    Gold and Lapis Lazuli earring c.1295-1186 BC 19th Dynasty, New...



    Gold and Lapis Lazuli earring

    c.1295-1186 BC

    19th Dynasty, New Kingdom

    (Source: The Metropolitan Museum)

    Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

    5 of 6 Syrian world heritage sites have suffered significant damage


    In war-torn Syria, 5 of 6 Syrian world heritage sites now "exhibit significant damage" and some structures have been "reduced to rubble," according to new high-resolution satellite image analysis by the nonprofit, nonpartisan American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). 

    Multidisciplinary Approach to Politics, Ethics and Economics of Ancient Artefacts


    The John Rylands Research Institute Seminar in Papyrology: "To publish or not to publish? A multidisciplinary approach to the politics, ethics and economics of ancient art[e]facts" 25 October 2014, Christie Room, The John Rylands Library, Manchester

    A brief introduction on the aims of the seminar is available from here: Aims
    The programme is visible here. This looks interesting, with a good and varied line-up of speakers and round-table panel. Let us hope some of the discussion is later published. 

    Focus on UK Metal Detecting: "Went out in the day..."


    Post by "weeder" in the thread 'Re: News story re night hawking of WW2 ordnance' (Wed Sep 17, 2014 9:01 pm):
    it dont say nothing about nighthawking just *alleged that the arrested man obtained these artefacts through illegal metal detecting
    The PAS will be gratified by the number of their "partners" which within a few hours of that mistaken statement being posted corrected him and pointed him to the definitions in the Oxford Archaeology Nighthawking Report and the relevant pages detailing detecting law on the PAS' own website.

    UPDATE 18th September 2014: 
    Sorry, I must have been dreaming. Nobody corrected him in 24 hours, fellow list members (PAS-partners among them) seem quite happy with that definition of not-nighthawking-then. There is no page on the PAS website detailing the full range of antiquities laws relevant to artefact hunting and collecting in England and Wales. Not that many semi-literates would read one if there was.

    Kristina Killgrove (Powered by Osteons)

    Holding Hands That Aren't There

    This photo has been circulating wildly of late, purporting to show a couple "that have been holding hands for 700 years" (according to the University of Leicester's press release).

    The dig blog is a bit less, erm, truth-stretchy, labeling them as "a man and women [sic] buried side by side with their arms crossed together."  Which is good because, well, where are their hands?


    Holding hands is a nice story.  And it could be true.  Buuuuut... one corpse's arm could have just been thrown on top of another corpse's arm.  I'd really want to figure out where the hands are (?) and what the precise stratigraphy is first.

    -----
    Related:  Holding Hands into Eternity (PbO - 21 October 2011)

    Archaeological News on Tumblr

    Sunken 'Ship of Gold' Contains Bounty of Jewelry, Other Treasures

    A trove of gold coins, bracelets, buckles and brooches are among the precious treasures retrieved from a 157-year-old shipwreck off the coast of South Carolina.

    The “Ship of Gold,” known in its sailing days as the SS Central America, was loaded down with 30,000 lbs. (13,600 kilograms) of gold when a hurricane sent it to the watery depths 160 miles (260 kilometers) from the coast of South Carolina on Sept. 12, 1857. In 1988, the shipwreck site was discovered, and recovery efforts pulled large amounts of gold from the bottom. But only about 5 percent of the site was excavated.

    Now, deep-sea exploration company Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc., is re-excavating the site. Divers first pulled up five gold bars and two gold coins from the wreck in April 2014. Now, the recovery ship, the Odyssey Explorer, is benched for repairs, and archaeologists are quite literally counting the booty. Read more.

    Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

    Focus on UK Metal Detectorists: Crook versus the "Antiquisearchers"?


    Adam Sherwin, 'Metal detectors object to digs by Mackenzie Crook about ‘dysfunctional’ hobby in BBC4's 'Detectorists'...', Independent, Wednesday 17 September 2014
    The BBC4 comedy follows Crook, Toby Jones and their eccentric friends at the Danbury Metal Detecting Club as they search for that one big find in Essex. They are hindered by arch-rivals the Antiquisearchers, a self-important and officious detecting duo, who bear a striking resemblance to Simon and Garfunkel and are affiliated to the local museum.
    So the Danbury Detecting Club is not? So its the responsibles against the others? Is the 'Code of Practice for Responsible Detecting in England and Wales' referred to by either party? The series "Detectorists" is set to debut on BBC4 on Thursday, October 2nd at 10pm.

    Focus on UK Metal Detecting: Dysfunctional?


    Detectorists (BBC)
    Adam Sherwin, 'Metal detectors object to digs by Mackenzie Crook about ‘dysfunctional’ hobby in BBC4's 'Detectorists'...', Independent, Wednesday 17 September 2014
    Metal detector[ist]s have accused the BBC of portraying them as “anoraks” in a new sitcom that shines a light on those enthusiasts whose lives are dedicated to uncovering a treasure hoard. [...] the National Council for Metal Detecting refused to co-operate with the BBC when it sought the body’s participation in the series because they felt the project intended to mock enthusiasts. In the opening episode, the head of the detecting club sends members to sleep with a tedious talk on buttons. Trevor Austin, the council’s general secretary, said: “They approached us but we didn’t want to get involved in a comedy which would belittle detecting and make detectors look anorakish [...] Any serious metal detector knows there isn’t much money in it. And they don’t dig without getting a special licence and abiding by the rules.”
    Well, as far as their record so far looks, if the NCMD had ever agreed to co-operate in any initiative at all, it would probably be a first. What's this about a "special licence" Mr Austin, where did you get that from? Now if there is anything that makes metal detectorists look like a load of touchy twits, it's their national organization refusing to be consultants for a sitcom, a sitcom for goodness' sake, for fear that detectorists might be made to look any more ridiculous than they themselves will make them look by adopting such a stance.   That's why the Independent is writing bout the NCMD rather than the upcoming programme.

    There was a press screening last night. The comedy series "Detectorists" is set to debut on BBC4 on Thursday, October 2nd at 10pm. For more updates on the series, follow @Detectorists on Twitter
     

    American School of Classical Studies in Athens: News

    Back-to-(American)-School Sale

    For one week only (Sept. 19-26) the ASCSA is selling its overstock of back issues of Hesperia at $5 per copy, no limit. Spend $50 to receive free shipping and an original, full-color map of Attic demes published by John Traill in Hesperia Supplement 14 (1975).

    Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

    Daphnet: ILIESI’s Digital Archives of PHilosophical texts on the NET

    Daphnet

    Daphnet, the ILIESI’s Digital Archives of PHilosophical texts on the NET, is a portal that gives access to digital platforms dedicated to relevant authors and texts belonging to the history of scientific and philosophical thought. These platforms are characterized by some common aspects: They primarily aim at giving access to primary sources, eventually complemented by secondary sources and critical instruments; they can include both facsimiles and transcriptions of manuscripts and printed texts; they are based on open-source programmes and standard encoding (i.e. html, XLM,...); the text of these platforms can be semantically enriched. Moreover, the platforms are interoperable, open to the collaboration of the scholars, and they are certified by a board of reviewers.


    Presocratics Source
    Presocratics Source presents the transcription of the famous collection of Presocratic thinkers in ninety chapters originally edited by H. Diels and W. Kranz (Die Fragmente der Vorsokratiker, ed. by H. Diels-W. Kranz, 3 vols., Weidmann, Berlin, 19582), with the parallel Italian translation edited by G. Giannantoni (I Presocratici. Testimonianze e frammenti, a cura di G. Giannantoni, Laterza, Roma-Bari, 19832).

    Socratis et Socraticorum Reliquiae Source
    Socratis et Socraticorum Reliquiae Source presents the transcription of the collection of testimonies about Socrates and Socratics (Socratis et Socraticorum Reliquiae) originally edited by G. Giannantoni.

    Diogenes Laertius Source
    Diogenes Laertius Source presents the transcription of Lives and opinions of eminent Philosophers in ten books. Collation of the editions of R. D. Hicks, H. S. Long, M. Marcovich and the Italian translation of M. Gigante with parallel Greek text restored on the bases of his philological notes. The site enable users to access texts, exploit resources, and perform queries. Notes, additional information and a legenda for a better access to the texts are also available.



    Francesca Tronchin (Classical Archaeology News)

    MU, Italian Museum, City of Rome, Energy Company Partner for Historical Cultural Project

    MU, Italian Museum, City of Rome, Energy Company Partner for Historical Cultural Project:

    MU, Italian Museum, City of Rome, Energy Company Partner for Historical Cultural Project

    For more than a century, hundreds of thousands of historical artifacts dating back to before the founding of Rome have been stored in crates in the Capitoline Museums of Rome, where they have remained mostly untouched. Now, the City of Rome; the Capitoline Museums, the first public museum in the world; and Enel Green Power North America, a leading renewable energy company; have started a project, known as “The Hidden Treasure of Rome,” which will bring those artifacts into the laboratories of U.S. universities to be studied, restored, categorized and catalogued. The University of Missouri is the first university selected for this project.

    Under the agreement, both MU scholars and students will have access to the antiquities. Graduate students in MU’s Department of Art History and Archaeology will be working directly with the collections and can use these objects for thesis and dissertation projects. The first set of loans — 249 black-gloss ceramics dating to the period of the Roman Republic (fifth to first centuries B.C.) —recently were received by the MU Museum of Art and Archaeology.

    AIA Fieldnotes

    A Game of Thrones and Coffins: The Death and Resurrection of Osiris

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    Friday, October 17
    5:30–6:30 p.m.
    Registration is required. Free
    This program has been generously funded by University of Chicago Arts Council, and the Illinois Humanities Council.
    Join us in celebration of the University Humanities Day with a free public lecture by Robert Ritner, professor of Egyptology at the Oriental Institute. Dr. Ritner is a world-renowned expert on Egyptian religion and mythology, and his lecture will focus on the enduring power and appeal of this god of the Egyptian pantheon.
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    Foy Scalf
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    Wandering Arameans: Arameans Outside Syria: Textual and Archaeological Perspectives

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    Sponsored by University of Leipzig
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    For all those who will be in vicinity of Leipzig at the end of October, please see the following notice:

    Read more »

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    Prof. Dr Angelika Berlejung
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    Bodies in Revolt: Erotics, Metaphor and Materiality in the Ancient World

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    Sponsored by UCLA
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    conference

    UCLA Graduates Conference: February 6-7, 2015

    This conference seeks papers on erotics and sexual desire in the ancient world from a broad range of disciplines and perspectives. What were ancient attitudes towards sex and erotics? How is the erotic represented in material culture, from sculpture and painting to household objects and architecture? How do sex and erotic desire appear as metaphors in political, philosophical, and poetic discourse? Read more »

    Location

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    Elliott Piros
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    CFP Deadline: 
    October 1, 2014

    Rheotoric – Tragedy- Mimesis. The Problem of Truth in Greek Post- Classical Historiography

    Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
    Sponsored by University of Saarbrücken (Germany)
    Event Type (you may select more than one): 
    conference

    The conference aims at approaching post-classical historiography from a different perspective, discussing the issue of ’true' representations by looking at other genres such as rhetoric or philosophy. Accordingly, different panels will explore the meaning of historiographical truth not from our modern point of view (as it has been done by many scholars who understood Polybius' remarks on truth and remarks on his colleagues from their own perspective), but from the very particular Hellenistic conception of truth and mimesis.

    In short, we would like to dwell on questions such like: Read more »

    Location

    Name: 
    Dr. Thomas Blank
    Telephone: 
    Call for Papers: 
    yes
    Right Header: 
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    CFP Deadline: 
    September 30, 2014

    Rheotoric – Tragedy- Mimesis. The Problem of Truth in Greek Post- Classical Historiography

    Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
    Sponsored by University of Saarbrücken (Germany)
    Event Type (you may select more than one): 
    conference

    The conference aims at approaching post-classical historiography from a different perspective, discussing the issue of ’true' representations by looking at other genres such as rhetoric or philosophy. Accordingly, different panels will explore the meaning of historiographical truth not from our modern point of view (as it has been done by many scholars who understood Polybius' remarks on truth and remarks on his colleagues from their own perspective), but from the very particular Hellenistic conception of truth and mimesis.

    In short, we would like to dwell on questions such like: Read more »

    Location

    Name: 
    Dr. Thomas Blank
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    yes
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    CFP Deadline: 
    September 30, 2014

    ArcheoNet BE

    Contactdag prehistorie op 6 december in Luik

    Op zaterdag 6 december zal in Luik de jaarlijkse contactdag van de ‘Contactgroep Prehistorie’ plaatsvinden. Een internationale keur aan prehistorici zal er de resultaten van hun onderzoek voorstellen. Nog tot 17 oktober kunnen alle geïnteresseerden voorstellen voor een voordracht of poster indienen. Volume 34 van de ‘Notae Praehistoricae’ zal opnieuw zowel in gedrukte als elektronische vorm verschijnen. Ook de deadline voor bijdragen aan de Notae Praehistoricae is 17 oktober.

    Naast de jaarlijkse gewoonte om recent steentijdonderzoek in België te belichten, ook dit jaar weer ruimte gecreërd om Belgische onderzoekers die niet of niet zo strikt met België bezig zijn aan het woord te laten. Daarnaast blijft de traditie behouden om een buitenlandse gastspreker uit te nodigen.

    Potentiële prekers of auteurs van een poster dienen hun titel en korte samenvatting voor 17 oktober door te sturen naar GdContactPrehist@ulg.ac.be. Ook niet-gepresenteerd onderzoek kan in de ‘Notae Praehistoricae’ worden opgenomen. Dit kan tot 17 oktober via Ivan.Jadin@naturalsciences.be.

    Ancient Peoples

    Blueware detail Fragmented Bowl  c.1550-1295 BC New Kingdom,...



    Blueware detail Fragmented Bowl 

    c.1550-1295 BC

    New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty

    (Source: The Metropolitan Museum)

    ArcheoNet BE

    Van boomstam tot altaarstuk

    Sinds vorige week loopt in het Provinciaal Cultuurcentrum Caermersklooster in Gent een nieuwe tijdelijke tentoonstelling over het Lam Gods: ‘Van boomstam tot altaarstuk’. “Tot op heden is er een hevige discussie over de vele hypotheses over het ontstaan van het Lam Godsretabel,” aldus gedeputeerde Jozef Dauwe. “De nieuwe tentoonstelling vertelt over de oorsprong en het maakproces van de eiken panelen en hun lijsten en wat recent onderzoek daarover aan het licht bracht. Zo laat deze expo het publiek meekijken, meedenken en zelf een hypothese vormen.”

    De tentoonstelling brengt de recente gegevens van het dendrochronologisch onderzoek en ook de datering van het eikenhout worden getoond. Deze bevindingen worden in relatie gebracht met mogelijke praktijken in het atelier. Daarnaast ziet de bezoeker de sporen van houtbewerking waarvan de details duidelijk zichtbaar zijn op de radiografieën en op de achterzijde van de panelen. De oude sporen van scharnieren worden vergeleken met archieffoto’s, waardoor conclusies mogelijk zijn over verschillende werkplaatspraktijken.

    De tentoonstelling toont de ruwe behandeling die de zijpanelen ondergingen in 1894 tijdens hun aanpassing voor hun museale presentatie in de ‘Gemäldegalerie’ in Berlijn. Ten slotte krijgt de bezoeker inzicht in het recent onderzoek naar de polychromie (veelkleurigheid) van de oorspronkelijke lijsten; dit gebeurt aan de hand van de reconstructie van een geschilderde steenimitatie, uitgevoerd met dunne transparante verf op bladzilver.

    De expositie werd samengesteld door het onderzoekersteam van het Koninklijk Instituut voor het Kunstpatrimonium dat ook verantwoordelijk is voor de huidige restauratie van het altaarstuk. Voorbeelden van schrijnwerkersalaam werden in bruikleen gegeven door het Provinciaal Molencentrum in Wachtebeke.

    Praktisch de tentoonstelling loopt t.e.m. 30 juni 2015 in het Provinciaal Cultuurcentrum Caermersklooster (Vrouwebroerssstraat 6, 9000 Gent). Meer info op www.caermersklooster.be.

    Archaeological News on Tumblr

    Excavations in Patara end with surprizing discoveries

    This year’s archaeological excavations in the ancient city of Patara, located in the southern province of Antalya’s Kaş, have ended. Among the findings this year were the statuette of the goddess Asteria and a seal owned by the Egyptian king Ptolemares and his wife Arsinoe.

    The excavations in the ancient city of Patara, one of the six big cities of the Lycia Union, have been continuing for 26 years. This year 30 academics, five archaeologists, 14 archaeology students and 20 laborers worked for 2.5 months in the ancient city.

    In addition to the goddess statuette and the seal, a Lydian coin dating back to 610-570 B.C. and a figurine from 3,000 B.C. were unearthed this year in the area. Read more.

    He has a wife you know

    anarchistlovesongs: domme-chronicles: strangeremains: Skull,...



    anarchistlovesongs:

    domme-chronicles:

    strangeremains:

    Skull, found in France, with a knife still embedded it it.  The skull belonged to a Roman solider who died during the Gallic Wars, ca. 52BC. It was on display at the Museo Rocsen in Argentina.  

    Whenever I see things like this, I wonder how they died. I guess it will always be a mystery.

    I’m gonna go with “Stabbed through the head” 

    could have been worse, better lightning than golden showers.



    could have been worse, better lightning than golden showers.

    ISAW News Blog

    Changes to ISAW's Facebook Pages

    ISAW is excited to announce that in the coming weeks we will be changing the way we use Facebook. By merging our Exhibitions page and Library page with our main page, we will be providing visitors, friends, and supporters easier access to a broader range of information that best expresses ISAW's mission and activities.

    To make sure you receive all ISAW-related updates, news and announcements, please make sure to "like" the main ISAW page (https://www.facebook.com/isawnyu).

    Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

    Open Access Monograph Series: Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Monographs

    Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Monographs
    http://grbs.library.duke.edu/public/journals/11/journal_sprites.png
    Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Monographs 
    1. G. L. Huxley, Anthemius of Tralles: A Study in Later Greek Geometry.  1959. [Link]
    2. Emerson Buchanan, Aristotle’s Theory of Being. 1962. [Link]
    3. Jack L. Benson, Ancient Leros. 1963. [Link]
    4. William M. Calder III, The Inscription from Temple G at Selinus. 1963. [Link]
    5. Mervin R. Dilts, ed., Heraclidis Lembi Excerpta Politiarum.  1971. [Link]
    6. Eric G. Turner, The Papyrologist at Work.  1973. [Link]
    7. Roger S. Bagnall, The Florida Ostraka: Documents from the Roman Army in Upper Egypt.  1976. [Link]
    8. Graham Speake, A Collation of the Manuscripts of Sophocles’ Oedipus Coloneus.  1978.
    9. Kevin K. Carroll, The Parthenon Inscription.  1982. [Link]
    10. Studies Presented to Sterling Dow.  1984. [Link]
    11. Michael H. Jameson, David R. Jordan, and Roy D. Kotansky, A Lex Sacra from Selinous.  1993.

    Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Scholarly Aids
    1. Index of Passages Cited in Herbert Weir Smyth Greek Grammar.  Compiled under the direction of Walter A. Schumann.  1961. [Link]
    2. Sterling Dow, Conventions in Editing.  1969. [Link]

    Out of series
    A Generation of Antiquities: The Duke Classical Collection 1964-1994 (1994). [Link]