Maia Atlantis: Ancient World Blogs

Tom Elliott (

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December 15, 2017

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

The antiquities trade always destroys knowledge.

A Smithsonian Magazine article is misleadingly called 'Archaeologists Are Only Just Beginning to Reveal the Secrets Hidden in These Ancient Manuscripts' (palaeography probably would be a better description) but there is another point here.

Imagine if these had been found by an artefact hunter, divided up into little bits like the recent Dead Sea Scroll fragments and sold off piecemeal to greedy collectors. We'd know none of this. The antiquities trade always destroys knowledge. Even when its supporters claim it is in some way creating knowledge, the wrenching of the artefacts out of their context of deposition and discovery and putting them, decontextualised, in collections (or on the market) is always destructive. Discuss. 

Antiquities trade: Is it any wonder we are where we are?

A few days ago, a lobbyist for the no-questions-asked antiquities trade Peter Tompa published an article on his 'Cultural Property Obfuscator' blog called 'Hipster Internet Art Newsletter Raises Alarm About Antiquities being "Weaponized" for Political Purposes' which aims to discuss the text by Professor Michael Press ('How Antiquities Have Been Weaponized in the Struggle to Preserve Culture' discussed by me here). Rather than addressing the issue discussed, that is the weaponisation of cultural heritage by the US government (and the fact that in order to do that, the state has been lying to its citizens) we find the tenor of the ensuing discussion rather telling. One collector wrote somewhat emotionally but apparently in all seriousness (December 9, 2017 at 1:49 AM):
Hello Peter: These peddlers of heritage fake news, mostly academic grant-grabbers (with a smattering of pig-ignorant camp followers) having an axe to grind, or, working to private agendas, rightly deserve censure. The street-corner rabble-rousers have been caught bang to rights with their fingers in the propaganda cookie jar. I'm sure many loud-mouthed propagandists know the game is up and will be running for cover to both protect their backsides and what’s left of their reputations. Happy days ahead perhaps.
Here we see the tendency prevalent in the political right to reduce any political issue to the personal level, and then by overloading their text with epithets and derogatory adjectives to demonise those implicated. Another feature is the implication that when thus-demonised opposing views are silenced, some form of social utopia will emerge. Senior coin dealer Wayne Sayles (December 11, 2017 AT 4:24 PM) goes down the same road, blaming anything and everything on his own private bugbear, archaeologists. He has his own views about what needs to go to bring about a pie-in-the-sky  'Fel Temp Reparatio'.
Fact #1: Ancient coins have been collected and traded from literally the beginning of their existence in the 7th century BC.

Fact #2: No culture on earth ever considered, much less imposed, trade controls on ancient coins before the rise of archaeology as a "science" and the acceptance of these scientists as "experts".

Fact #3: Many millions, if not billions, of ancient coins legally crossed national boundaries without controls of any kind as late as the early 20th century when archaeology (once a hobby itself) started to achieve some recognition as an academic subject of interest. There is literally no way to determine modern ownership of ancient coins based on point of origin.

Fact #4: Between 1970 and 2017 the archaeological community has aligned itself with a progressive socialist ideology that radically opposes private ownership.

Fact #5: Radicals never let truth prevail and readily pervert truth for the "greater good".

Is it any wonder we are where we are?
No, with this kind of reasoning, it is no wonder that we are where we are.  So-called 'facts 1-3' are a smokescreen, if antiquities (this is not just about coins) have a collecting history that allows them to be shown to be part of that earlier phase of the circulation of collectables, then there is no problem. The problem is that dealers like Mr Sayles consider it perfectly acceptable to move large numbers of antiquities around the market he inhabits without any documentation of licit orgins and no-questions-asked. His problem is that opinion is shifting away from acceptance of such a state of affairs, nineteenth century trade models based on anonymous and colonialist exploitation no longer look, in the twenty-first century, as 'acceptable' and moods are beginning to swing away from the free-for-all/anything-goes' trade model favoured by many of the dealers in operation today who, for the most part, demonstrably pay only lip service to the concerns. 

So-called fact #4 is an egregious example of the sort of weasel wording these people use. The issue is not 'private ownership' (as Mr Sayles, slow to learn, obviously has been told many times). There is nothing 'radical' about accepting that - given the realities of the day -  if one wants to buy certain commodities, then there are requirements to ensure they are of licit origins, and to be able to demonstrate that when they are passed on to  new owner. Like a second-hand car, or a venus fly-trap (protected species in the wild).  Once again we see the political right in action, anything even vaguely relatable to 'communism' is automatically demonised in their minds, even if the actual accusation is so entirely in the face of logic it leaves normal folk scratching their heads in bewilderment at such a logic-lapse. Sayles' Fact five I would apply to antiquities dealers.

 Is it any wonder we are where we are?

ἐν ἐφέσῳ: Thoughts and Meditations

Dissertation Abstract Published in Tyndale Bulletin

For those who do not know me, my name is Chris Fresch. I used to contribute over at Old School Script, but that blog is no longer active. Since then, Mike and Rachel kindly invited me to contribute here. So, here I am! This is a quick post to inform anyone who may be interested... Continue Reading →

Laura Gibbs (Bestiaria Latina Blog)

Latin Proverbs and Fables Round-Up: December 14

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 undevicesimum Kalendas Ianuarias.

MYTHS and LEGENDS: The art image for today's legend shows Odysseus and Eurycleia, and there are more images here.


TINY PROVERBS: Today's tiny proverb is: Hylam vocat (English: He's shouting for Hylas, which is to say, he's claling out for something that is lost, as Heracles called out for his beloved Hylas, taken by the nymphs).

PUBLILIUS SYRUS: Today's proverb from Publilius Syrus is: Homo totiens moritur, quotiens amittit suos (English: You die every time you lose someone who is dear to you).

PROPER NAME PROVERBS: Today's proper name proverb from Erasmus is Thasium infundis (English: You're pouring in wine from Thasos; from Adagia 3.2.17... This is an ironic proverb, since instead of using water to dilute the wine, the renowned Thasian wine is being used).

ELIZABETHAN PROVERBS: Here is today's proverb commentary, this time by Conybeare: Aut bibe aut abi: A proverbe signifienge that we shoulde applye oursevels to the manners of men, or elles avoyde there companye.

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

And here are today's proverbial LOLcats:

Optimus magister bonus liber.
The best teacher is a good book.

Cavendi nulla est dimittenda occasio.
You should never ignore any chance to act cautiously.


MILLE FABULAE: The English translation for today from the Mille Fabulae et Una book is Leo Amatorius et Silvanus, the sad story of the lion in love.

Leo Amatorius

PHAEDRI FABULAE: The illustrated fable from Phaedrus for today is Cervus ad fontem, a story about body image: Latin text and Smart's translation.

STEINHOWEL: The illustrated fable from Steinhowel for today is de duobus muribus, the famous fable of the city mouse and the country mouse: Latin text and English versions.

GAUDIUM MUNDO: The Latin holiday song for today is Adeste Fideles, one of the most famous Latin carols: O Come, All Ye Faithful.

Archaeology Magazine

2,500-Year-Old Rock Art Discovered on Tiny Indonesian Island

Kisar rock artCANBERRA, AUSTRALIA—The International Business Times reports that 2,500-year-old cave art depicting boats, dogs, horses, and people has been discovered on the small Indonesian island of Kisar. In some of the images, the people are holding what may be shields, while in other scenes, they are playing drums or perhaps performing ceremonies. The artwork is small in size, like the drawings found on the neighboring island of Timor, according to Sue O’Connor of Australia National University. The images also resemble those found on metal drums made in northern Vietnam and southwest China and traded throughout the region some 2,500 years ago. For more on cave art in Indonesia, go to “The First Artists.”

Face of 17th-Century Scottish Soldier Reconstructed

soldiers Battle of DunbarDURHAM, ENGLAND—The Northern Echo reports that the face of one of 1,700 Scottish soldiers imprisoned in Durham after the Battle of Dunbar in 1650 has been digitally reconstructed by FaceLab experts at Liverpool John Moores University. Researchers from Durham University led by Chris Gerrard have been studying the remains of the soldiers since they were recovered from a mass grave in 2013. The skull of this man, known as “Skeleton 22,” was carefully reassembled and scanned, then combined with information gleaned from his dental calculus, and his age and anatomy, in order to create the 3-D image. The process revealed a previously unidentified scar on the soldier’s forehead. He is shown wearing a Scottish soldier’s typical gear, including a blue bonnet, and a brown jacket and shirt. The team had previously determined that the soldier was between the ages of 18 and 25 at the time of death, experienced periods of poor nutrition during his childhood, and had lived in southwest Scotland during the 1630s. The soldiers’ remains will eventually be reburied at the Elvet Hill Road Cemetery in Durham City. To read in-depth about the Scottish soldiers imprisoned in Durham, go to “After the Battle.”

Roman Engineering Revealed in Corinth’s Ancient Harbor

Greece Lechaion harborATHENS, GREECE—According to a report in The Guardian, members of the Lechaion Harbor Project are investigating structures built by the Romans in 44 B.C. in Lechaion, the ancient port of Corinth. Foundations of two large structures are visible in the outer harbor, but most of the ancient port is covered with sediment. The researchers suggest that by the first century A.D., large moles and quays had been built in the harbor basins with five-ton stone blocks. Pieces of wooden caissons and pilings used as foundations have also been found under the sediments. These remains can help archaeologists understand the Roman engineering process. An island in the middle of the inner basin may have served as a religious sanctuary, the base of a large statue, or a customs office. Seeds, bones, part of a wooden pulley, anchors, fishhooks, and ceramics from Italy, Tunisia, and Turkey have also been recovered. To read recent underwater excavations at the site of the Antikythera shipwreck in Greece, go to “Bronze Beauty.”

Artifacts Recovered in Aswan Excavations

Egypt Aswan ArtemisASWAN, EGYPT—Ahram Online reports that archaeological teams working with Egyptian archaeologists in the Aswan area have unearthed four intact burials of children in Gebel El-Silsila, a cemetery dating to the First Intermediate Period at Kom Ombo, and a statue thought to depict the Greek goddess Artemis in the old town of Aswan. Mostafa Waziri, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, said that Maria Nilsson and Swedish researchers discovered the children’s tombs, which yielded a mummy in linen wrappings, traces of wooden coffins, and funerary furniture, including amulets and pottery. The tombs date to the 18th Dynasty, between 1550 and 1292 B.C. In Kom Ombo, Austrian researchers uncovered mudbrick tombs, pottery, and other grave goods in a cemetery dating to between 2181 and 2055 B.C. The cemetery had been built on top of an older one, as well as an Old Kingdom town. Abdel Moneim Saeed, general director of Aswan and Nubia Antiquities, added that a mission headed by Swiss Egyptologist Wolfgang Muller found a statue missing its head, feet, and right hand. The figure’s dress resembles that worn by Artemis, the Greek goddess of hunting, procreation, and virginity, who had been combined with the Egyptian goddesses Isis and Bastet. For more, go to “Afterlife on the Nile.”

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Attic Inscriptions Online Updates in 2017

Attic Inscriptions Online Updates in 2017
15 September 2017: This release further enhances coverage of key documents of 403-353 BC, adding or revising: RO 25 (Silver coinage law), RO 26 (Grain tax law), RO 33 and RO 34 (Dionysios of Syracuse), RO 35 (Protest to Aitolian League), RO 36 (Sales of confiscated property and mine leases), RO 38 (Menelaos the Pelagonian), RO 41 (Alliance with Peloponnesian cities after Mantinea), RO 44 (Thessalian federation). Also new are the funerary monument for the midwife and doctor, Phanostrate (4th cent. BC), IG II2 6873, and a dedication newly identified as probably relating to the same woman, IG II3 4, 700; dedications relating to the doctor, Jason of Acharnai (2nd cent. AD), IG II3 4, 808 and 836; further 4th cent. BC dedications by the Council or Assembly: IG II3 4, 1; 2; 4; 5; 6; some significant 3rd cent. BC inscriptions from Rhamnous (translations only): I Rham. 1 (Soldiers honour unit leaders), 3 (Honours for general Epichares), 4 (Honours for general and soldiers), 6 (Honours for demarch), 7 (Divine honours for king Antigonos), 10 (Honours for general), 17 (Honours for Dikaiarchos of Thria); three inscriptions of 4th cent. AD: IG II2 5, 13252, 13253, 13293. We are also pleased to announce the start on 1 Oct. of the 4-year AHRC-funded project, Attic Inscriptions in UK Collections (AIUK).
12 July 2017: In this release we continue to expand and deepen coverage of key documents of 403-353 BC, revising and/or adding notes to: RO 17 (Athenian relations with Erythrai), RO 18 (Klazomenai), RO 19 (Phanokritos of Parion), RO 20 (Chios), RO 21 (Straton of Sidon), RO 22 (Prospectus of Second Athenian League), RO 23 and RO 24 (early agreements with League allies), RO 29 (Paros), RO 31 (Mytilene), RO 33 and RO 34 (Dionysios of Syracuse), RO 39 (Ioulis), RO 52 (Andros); adding new translations of the decrees for the seer, Sthorys of Thasos, IG II2 17, and regulating the export of ochre from Keos, RO 40; and adjusting notes to other inscriptions of 403-353 BC. Also new are a dedication of a statue of Democracy by the Council of 333/2 BC, IG II3 4, 3; two markers of properties mortgaged to friendly societies (eranistai), IG II2 2721 and Agora XIX H84; the extensive epigraphical record of the cult of the "Thracian" deity, Bendis, IG I3 136, IG II2 1255, 1256, 1283, 1284, 1324, 1361, 1317b, SEG 44.60, SEG 59.151, 152, 155, IG II3 4, 591; and some significant 3rd cent. BC inscriptions (translations only), Agora XV 69, IG II2 1225, I Eleus. 182, 184, 193, 196.
12 June 2017: Today we publish AIO Papers 8, which includes an introduction to inscribed Athenian decrees of the 5th century BC and historical discussion of two important documents of the Athenian Empire, the Chalkis decree (IG I3 40) and the tribute reassessment decree ("Thoudippos' decree", IG I3 71). We have also upgraded the Browse facility to enable browsing by date and introduced an Advanced Search.
9 March 2017: Today we publish 186 new translations, completing our coverage of the decrees of the Council and Assembly of 200/199-168/7 BC, IG II3 1, 1258- IG II3 1, 1461. Every inscription published to date in IG II3 1 has now been translated on AIO. Two of the new translations include small new changes to texts printed in IG II3, explained in the sidenotes: IG II3 1, 1281 (honouring a cavalry commander); IG II3 1, 1387 (honouring service to the Eleusinian deities). Translations and notes published previously have also been updated, mainly, but not only, those in the range IG II3 1, 1256- IG II3 1, 1461. Other new translations are of the choregic monument of Lysikrates, IG II3 4, 460, and some hellenistic inscriptions relating to the cavalry and their commanders: Agora XVI 270/1; I Eleus. 183; IG II2 1264; SEG 21.525; SEG 46.167; IG II3 4, 281.
10 January 2017: This update completes coverage of the revision of Athenian law at the end of the 5th century BC: sacrificial calendar of Athens (including new readings), SEG 52.48A and SEG 52.48B; law about the trierarchy, IG I3 236a; law about taxes or contributions, IG I3 237; law fragment, SEG 39.18; revised notes to Draco's homicide law, IG I3 104. It also begins revising and expanding coverage of key historical inscriptions of 403-353 BC: decrees of 401/0 BC honouring Athenians and foreigners who resisted the Thirty, SEG 28.45, RO 4; alliance with Boeotia, 395 BC, RO 6; memorials of infantry and cavalry killed in Corinthian War, 394 BC, IG II2 5221, IG II2 5222, IG II2 6217; restoration of Piraeus walls, 395/4-394/3, IG II2 1656, 1657; honours for Dionysios of Syracuse, 394/3 BC, RO 10; for Euagoras of Salamis, 394/3 BC, RO 11; decree relating to Klazomenai, 387/6 BC (with new fragment), RO 18. The update also includes the following further inscriptions relating to religion: law on repairs of sanctuary of Artemis at Brauron, SEG 52.104; provisions for priests and priestesses (in Aixone?), SEG 54.214; dedication of a house and garden to Asklepios, IG II2 4969; decree of Aixone awarding honours for management of a festival, SEG 46.154; tribal decree honouring a priest of Asklepios, IG II2 1163; honours for religious officials at Aixone, IG II2 1199; decree regulating cult, IG II2 1234; two commemorative herms of the 3rd cent. A.D., IG II2 3764, IG II2 3960; a choregic dedication (from Aixone?), IG II3 4, 498; and a funerary columella, IG II2 9160. Image links have been expanded to include images on the Agora excavations website and on Wikimedia Commons.

December 14, 2017

Peter Tompa (Cultural Property Observer)

"Emergency" Restrictions on Libyan Cultural Goods Imposed

U.S. Customs has announced so-called "emergency" import restrictions on Libyan cultural goods.  Once again, grossly over-hyped fears of illicit antiquities funding terrorism appears to be the primary  justification for rushing through this dubious request, even though it meets few, if any, of the statutory criteria and it is doubtful the militias running the country will protect any artifacts that may be repatriated under the agreement. 

The sheer breadth of the "designated list" also raises concerns.   The Cultural Property Implementation Act contemplates that any “emergency restrictions” will be far narrower than "regular" ones.  They focus on material of particular importance, but no “concerted international response” is necessary.  The material must be a “newly discovered type” or from a site of “high cultural significance” that is in danger of “crisis proportions.” Alternatively, the object must be of a civilization, the record of which is in jeopardy of “crisis proportions,” and restrictions will reduce the danger of pillage. 

Yet, here, import restrictions have been imposed on virtually all Libyan cultural goods.   And despite the lack of "cultural significance" all coin types that were made or circulated within Libya down to 1750 A.D. are now potentially subject to restrictions.   At least in a bow to the CPIA's wording limiting such restrictions to items "first discovered" within Libya, the regulations contain some belated acknowledgement any restricted coins must also be "found" there.  (Previous import restrictions on coins have improperly equated where they are found with where they are minted, though they are items of commerce that typically circulated widely.)

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Celtic Inscribed Stones Project

Celtic Inscribed Stones Project
The Celtic Inscribed Stones Project is based in the Department of History, and the Institute of Archaeology, University College London.
The database includes every non-Runic inscription raised on a stone monument within Celtic-speaking areas (Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Dumnonia, Brittany and the Isle of Man) in the early middle ages (AD 400-1000). There are over 1,200 such inscriptions. In dealing with such a large corpus limitations of time have meant that, for this version of the database, the entries for Wales, Scotland, Dumnonia, Brittany and the Isle of Man, are fuller than those for Ireland. These problems will be rectified before the final version is released (June 2001). The final release will also see the search facility greatly enhanced.
Information on the stones has been broken down into three main types - SITE, STONE, and INSCRIPTION.
SITE: Includes information on the physical character and/or history of the site.
STONE: Includes information on discovery, location, condition, size, form and decoration.
INSCRIPTION: Includes information on legibility, position, script, linguistics and readings.

Within each of these you can find bibliographic references that are linked to the bibliography
Links to IMAGES of many of the stones can be found within the INSCRIPTION pages.
CISP has given each site, stone and inscription a 'unique identifier' to aid searching. Thus each stone and each inscription from each site has been placed in sequential order beginning with 1. An example of this follows:

    CLMAC - This is the five-letter code for the site of Clonmacnoise, Co. Offaly, Ireland.
    CLMAC/1 - This is the code for the 1st stone with an inscription from this site.
    CLMAC/200 - This is the code for the 200th stone with an inscription from this site.
    CLMAC/1/1 - This is the code for the 1st inscription on the 1st stone from this site.
The modes of browsing the database are: SITE, REGION, CISP CODE, PERSONAL NAME, NAME OF STONE (i.e. Men Scryfa) and CORPORA NUMBER. SITE: The sites with inscriptions have been listed alphabetically (including alternative names, and names in the modern Celtic vernaculars). These can be found with links to the main entries through the Site Index - Alphabetical.
REGION: Listings of all the sites with inscriptions have also been grouped by county and country (Ireland is treated as a whole, and Scotland, Wales and the Isle of Man are treated individually). These can be found with links to the main entries through the Site Index - Geographical.
CISP CODE: Working on the above explained principle, a list of CISP site codes, with links to the main entries, can be found by looking at the Site Index - CISP code.
PERSONAL NAME: All the personal names within the database have been listed alpabetically (including fragmentary names). These can be found, with links to the main entries, through the Name Index - Alphabetical. This will by-pass the site entry and take you straight to the INSCRIPTION entry.
NAME OF STONE: Some stones, such as Men Scryfa, are also known by a particular name. These can be found, with links to the main entries, through the Stone Index - Named Stones.

Open Access Journal: Kazı Sonuçları Toplantıları

[First posted in AWOL 18 March 2011, updated 14 December 2017]

Kazı Sonuçları Toplantıları
ISSN: 1017-7655


          The Heroic Age

          Connecting the Art and Architectural Histories of Medieval Early Modern Cities

          Call for Participation:

          The Cyprus Institute, with support through the Getty Foundation’s Connecting Art Histories initiative, is launching a new research seminar project: Mediterranean Palimpsests: Connecting the Art and Architectural Histories of Medieval and Early Modern Cities. Interested scholars at a formative stage of their careers are encouraged to apply for participation in the project’s three planned workshops in Nicosia, Cordoba/Granada and Thessaloniki/Rhodes.

          Directed by Nikolas Bakirtzis (The Cyprus Institute) and D. Fairchild Ruggles (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), the project investigates the layered art histories of medieval Mediterranean cities as the basis for scholarly connections that challenge and move beyond the boundaries of modern historiographies, national narratives and contemporary socioeconomic realities. Set in a region where issues of cultural heritage and identity are currently highly contested, the project looks at the material past to understand its relevance for the present and future. The project’s focus expands on collaborative research on historic Mediterranean cities pursued by the Cyprus Institute’s Science and Technology in Archaeology Research Center (STARC) and the Illinois’ National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) and the Department of Landscape Architecture of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

          Mediterranean Palimpsests explicitly avoids nation-based models that emphasize unique, disconnected histories, and instead challenges scholars to consider the medieval Mediterranean as a matrix of cities that, united by the connections forged through trade, royal courts, migrations, pilgrimages, and conquests, produced the material culture and spaces that we encounter today. Questions about spatial context, scale and complexity are not particular to any one city in the Mediterranean, and thus provide common ground for research collaboration.

          Addressing these issues, the project’s directors will convene three research seminars that will engage expert advisors and selected emerging scholars, that will explore transition, appropriation and identity in art and architectural history; these will be ten-day programs held in Nicosia (May 7-16, 2018), Granada Cordoba (January, 2019), and Rhodes Thessaloniki (May 2019).

          The intense focus on these cities addresses their formation during the medieval and early modern periods, which significantly shaped their subsequent growth and in turn framed the production and experience of art and architecture in the following centuries. But the comparison also extends to Cairo, Alexandria, Jerusalem, Istanbul, Palermo, and other important Mediterranean nodes with the goal of considering the Mediterranean as a connected field, in which medieval cities share the experience of survival, appropriation and reconstruction for modern use.

          Eligible scholars, primarily from the Mediterranean region, are invited to apply for one of twelve positions. The program provides travel and lodging costs and museum entrance fees for participating scholars.

          EligibilityScholars and researchers who received their PhD in or after 2008 (i.e. within past 10 years) in the fields of art history, architectural history, landscape history, and archaeology are eligible to apply.  Scholars must be willing and able to participate in all three workshops.

          Deadline: February 15, 2018. Applicants will be notified of results by the end of February

          Application: Applicants should send as email attachments a 3-page Statement of Interest and a Curriculum Vitae to The C.V. should clearly state the field of doctoral study and date degree was received, applicant’s nationality, and applicant’s current place of employment or research. 

          Project website
          Call for Papers: 2018 McGill-Queen's Graduate 
          Conference in History: Violence and the Mind

          Please note that we have extended the submissions deadline for the 15th annual McGill-Queen’s Graduate Conference in History, taking place inMontreal on March 1-3, 2018. Abstracts of no more than 400 words and a brief academic biography (in Word or PDF format) can be sent to

          The theme of this year’s conference, “Violence and the Mind,” will provide a platform for graduate students to explore violence historically by foregrounding the interior lives of historical subjects. We welcome emerging scholars from across the disciplines to present research that questions how violence is produced, elaborated, interpreted and experienced by the mind. For more on this year’s theme, please refer to the attached PDF. To learn more about the McGill-Queen’s Graduate Conference in History, please visit

          This year’s keynote speaker is Dagmar Herzog, Distinguished Professor of History and Daniel Rose Faculty Scholar at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. Her book, Cold War Freud: Psychoanalysis in an Age of Catastrophes, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2016.

          Best regards,

          The McGill-Queen’s 2018 Planning Committee 
          Department of History and Classical Studies
          McGill University

          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          Open Access Journal: Türk Arkeoloji Dergisi

          [First posted in AWOL 18 March 2012, updated 14 December 2017]

          Türk Arkeoloji Dergisi
          ISSN: 0564-5042

          Penn Museum Blog

          Song of the Abalone: As Heard From Different Ears

          Abalone shell is unquestionably beautiful. Its unassuming rough exterior only serves to make its iridescent and scintillating interior even more attractive in contrast, making it comparable in aesthetic value to materials like gold, silver, and gemstones. Beyond this surface beauty, abalone is simultaneously a living thing and a life-giving force, in more ways than one. For generations, among Native American tribes of the Pacific coast, its shell has been harvested and made into other products or traded while its flesh was collected as a source of food. Abalone has intrigued and been handled differently by different groups of people throughout time, from indigenous peoples to collectors to modern researchers. Its magic has touched many different audiences and the journey of one pair of earrings exemplifies the differing value and meaning of this material to various groups.

          Abalone earrings (97-84-2022A and 97-84-2022B) in the Penn Museum collection. Photo by Margaret Bruchac.

          This pair of shell ear pendants (97-84-2022A and 97-84-2022B) are simple in appearance, consisting of two triangular pieces of abalone, each with a scalloped edge, attached to brass rings with leather strips. One pendant is slightly chipped and the leather is worn, a testament to the earrings’ age and their long journey to their current location in the collection of the Penn Museum. They tell a complex story, addressing human interactions, values, and meanings from ocean to shore and trade to religion.

          Originally collected by Amos H. Gottschall, the earrings were curated in Philadelphia’s Academy of Natural Sciences before being given to the Penn Museum on permanent loan. Gottschall originally acquired them from the Shoshone people near the Weber River in Utah in the late 1800s. This is where their story begins – with their original creators and users.

          Before becoming a collector’s item, abalone earrings and other abalone items would have been extremely significant, both physically and spiritually, to the Native peoples they were used by. Though these specific earrings were found in Utah, abalone regalia has commonly been associated with Native Americans up and down the Pacific coast, where these marine creatures once teemed. Abalone shell was used as adornment in several different ways, including as appliques glued directly onto the skin, in monumental art, and, of course, in jewelry.[1] To these Native peoples, abalone was a symbol of life, both literally and figuratively.

          Abalone was an important part of the diet of coastal tribes and was eaten both fresh and dried. As a living creature, abalone literally nourished tribes like the Point Arena Pomo, and was traded with other groups as a means of sustenance as well. However, abalone’s life-giving properties extended far beyond physical nutrition, with Native people recognizing it as not only a living thing, but also as a part of the earth. In the Bole Maru, or Dreamer religion of the Point Arena Pomo, there is a narrative about the “Parent of all Abalones,” the first creature to inhabit the ocean and the living thing responsible for the existence of all other abalone, which became so important to the Pomo people. Recognizing this, John Boston, a Dreamer leader, was known to take care of the abalone by protecting them from sea urchins, and, by extension, taking care of the earth.[2]

          Native practices gave the abalone new life after the living creature died, by integrating the shell into religious ceremonies, where the chimes of the shell on a dancer’s clothing would make the “abalone sing.”[3] Similarly, the Karuk people have the legend of the “Abalone Woman,” a Spirit Being whose dances were replicated through ceremonial dances, again evoking the chiming of abalone, the “playthings,” or ikamiichvar, of the Spirit Beings.[4]

          However, abalone regalia was often stripped of its spiritual value by collectors. Amos Gottschall obtained these particular triangular ear pendants while making his way across the US peddling patent medicines to Native peoples. During his amateur expeditions, mainly through the southwestern United States, Gottschall amassed thousands of Native American objects from jewelry to weapons, and recorded them in three distinct collections. According to the original Gottschall records, these earrings were assigned the number 320 and were logged in Collection No. 1, which was deemed to have “specimens gleaned with much care, and are the very cream of their kind.”[5] Though Gottschall seems to have treated the Natives and their objects with respect, he also assigned monetary values to each of the objects in his collection, with the earrings in question being one of the least valued in that collection at only $2.50. Such an assignment of numerical value can degrade and strip the object of its spiritual value, by recognizing only its material value.

          Gottschall treated his journey through the United States as an exciting adventure, documenting the most exciting or exotic portions of his expeditions, such as witnessing Native peoples eating raw meat. Gottschall also evaluated Native American peoples from a Eurocentric lens, mentioning in his own writings that “the chief of the Shoshonee Indians is Washakie, a man much respected by Western people who can appreciate a truly ‘good Indian.’” By his definition, Gottschall evaluates Washakie to be a “good Indian” on the basis that he “has not been on a war-path against the whites for years.”[6]

          When Gottschall collected these shell earrings, the action of collecting them and reducing them to a catalog number separated them from their story and people. The history of this specific pair of pendants is lost, and although they are now treated carefully and respectfully in the Museum, they may never sing again like they might have once for the Shoshone.

          It is intriguing to see the meaning of an object evolve through time and to see the stark contrast of the value of the same object differ so greatly between the perspectives of different groups. While the Native peoples saw the abalone as a living, breathing, powerful force, collectors like Gottschall were only able to recognize the extent of its physical beauty and monetary value. Fundamentally, this draws a parallel to how European and American anthropologists and researchers of the past often viewed Native peoples – recognizing only the value of their material culture for anthropological research rather than seeing them as a living group with diverse cultures and values. The journey of a single object – from a Native American tribe to an itinerant medicine-peddler and finally to a university museum – can speak volumes about how materials are and could be treated and viewed.

          This object analysis was conducted for the Fall 2017 University of Pennsylvania course “Anthropology of Museums.” Students are examining Native American objects in the American Section of the Penn Museum by combining material analysis (elements, construction, design, condition, etc.) with documentation (texts, photographs, ethnographic data, etc.). Since some objects have minimal provenance data, we seek out similar materials, consult research articles and archives, and consider non-material evidence (oral traditions, ecosystems, museum memories, etc.) that might illuminate these objects. This research is designed to expand our understandings of object lives, using insights and information gathered from inside and outside of the Museum.

          Sources Cited:

          [1] N. A. Sloan, “Evidence of California-Area Abalone Shell in Haida Trade and Culture.” Canadian Journal of Archaeology / Journal Canadien d’Archéologie, vol. 27, no. 2 (2003), 276.
          [2] Les Field, et al. Abalone Tales: Collaborative Explorations of Sovereignty and Identity in Native California (North Carolina: Duke University Press, 2009), 66.
          [3] Ibid, 76.
          [4] Ibid, 85.
          [5] The inventory of materials acquired from Gottschall’s “Typical Collection No. 1” is housed in the Penn Museum Archives. See Amos H. Gottschall, Priced and Descriptive Catalogue of the Utensils, Implements, Weapons, Ornaments, Etc. of the Indians, Mound Builders, Cliff Dwellers. (Harrisburg, PA: A. H. Gottschall, 1909).
          [6] Amos H. Gottschall. Travels from Ocean to Ocean and from the Lakes to the Gulf: Being the Narrative of a Twelve Years Ramble and What Was Seen and Experienced. 3rd ed. (Harrisburg, PA: A. H. Gottschall, 1882), 53.

          For an overview of the 2017 object studies in the Anthropology of Museums class, see:
          • Margaret Bruchac. “Object Matters: Considering Materiality, Meaning, and Memory” in Beyond the Gallery Walls, Penn Museum Blog, December 4, 2017.


          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          Open Access Journal: Studies in Digital Heritage

          Studies in Digital Heritage
          Bust of Agrippina Minor 
          Studies in Digital Heritage publishes peer-reviewed articles, monographs, and special issues treating the entire gamut of topics in the field of Digital Heritage.

          his peer-reviewed, online journal publishes innovative work applying new digital technologies to the various fields of cultural heritage such as Anthropology, Archaeology, Art History, Architectural History, Classics, Conservation Science, Egyptology, and History. The journal welcomes submissions treating any and all technologies applied to the study of these fields.

          While the journal covers the gamut of topics relating to the use of technology in the study of cultural heritage, its special emphasis is on 3D technologies, including 3D data capture, processing of 3D models, theory and practice of 3D restoration of cultural heritage objects, use of 3D models in research and instruction, metadata and paradata standards and best practices for 3D models, and the use of 3D models on VR and AR devices as well as on web pages.

          Hence, when appropriate, authors are encouraged to embed interactive 3D models into their articles in place of traditional 2D illustrations. The journal supports WebGL solutions currently in use by professionals in the field, including 3DHop, Sketchfab, and Unity.  

          From time to time the journal will publish special issues on a particular topic.

          Research leading to the creation of this journal was generously supported by the National Science Foundation (grant # IIS-1014956; and see the related article by D. Koller, B. Frischer, and G. Humphreys, "Research Challenges for Digital Archives of 3D Cultural Heritage Models," JOCCH 5, 2009, pp. 1-20).

          Vol 1, No 2 (2017) 

          Table of Contents


          Vol 1, No 1 (2017)

          Table of Contents




          Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

          2018 AIA Abstract: The Medieval Countryside at a Regional Scale in the Western Argolid and Northeastern Peloponnesus

          It’s Archaeological Institute of America Season, and I offered to take the first swing at our paper for this January’s annual archaeology festival.

          Here’s our abstract:

          The Medieval Countryside at a Regional Scale in the Western Argolid and Northeastern Peloponnesus
          Dimitri Nakassis, University of Colorado, Sarah James, University of Colorado, Scott Gallimore, Wilfrid Laurier University, and William Caraher, University of North Dakota

          The study of the medieval Mediterranean is paradoxical. On the one hand, scholars have continued to define the master narrative for the Medieval and Byzantine periods in the Mediterranean through politics and church history. On the other hand, few periods have seen as concerted an effort to understand the life and experiences of nonpolitical classes from villagers to monks, mystics, and merchants. At the risk of simplifying a complex historiography, historians of the Annales School pioneered the study of everyday life in medieval and early modern Europe. At the same time, Byzantine historians have drawn influence from concepts of cultural materialism to critique the codevelopment of particular economic and political systems and to recognize the fourth to 14th century as a period of rural transformation. This work has found common ground with landscape archaeologists who since the 1970s have sought to emphasize long-term, quantitative methods within tightly de ned regional contexts to understand the tension between local and re- gional developments in the medieval countryside.

          Recent work in the Peloponnesus and central Greece by the Nemea Valley Archaeological Project, the Argolid Exploration Project, the Boeotia survey, and the Methana Survey Project, among others, provides a methodologically sophisticated, regional perspective on the medieval countryside that is almost unprecedented in the Mediterranean. This paper adds to this existing body of regional evidence based on three seasons of the Western Argolid Regional Project. From 2014–2016, this project documented 30 km2 of the Inachos River valley through highly intensive pedestrian survey. This work has revealed significant postclassical activity ranging from Late Antique habitation to 13th-century settlements and Venetian towers. These sites derive greater significance from both the impressive body of recently published fieldwork on the countryside of the northeastern Peloponnesus and the well-documented histories of the urban centers of Argos, Nafplion, and Corinth. The existence of both rural and urban contexts in this region offers a unique opportunity to consider the tensions between town and country and rural life and urban politics in the postclassical centuries. The result is a study of the medieval countryside that probes the limits of the long-standing and largely urban and political master narrative while also demonstrating significant regional variation.

          Archaeological News on Tumblr

          Face of Ancient Queen Revealed for First Time

          Some 1,200 years ago, a wealthy noblewoman, at least 60 years old, was laid to rest in Peru—richly...

          Compitum - publications

          J. J. Ferrer Maestro, C. Kunst, D. Hernández de la Fuente et E. Faber (éd. ...


          Juan José Ferrer Maestro, Christiane Kunst, David Hernández de la Fuente, Eike Faber (éd.), Entre los mundos : Homenaje a Pedro Barceló. Zwischen den Welten : Festschrift für Pedro Barceló., Besançon, 2017.

          Éditeur : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté
          Collection : Institut des sciences et techniques de l'Antiquité (ISTA)
          806 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-578-7
          45 €

          Las contribuciones tratan temas centrales de la Antigüedad y su recepción: religión y política en la Antigüedad, historia antigua de España, imágenes y discursos del poder e historia de la recepción de la Antigüedad.
          Die Texte behandeln zentrale Themen der Antike und ihrer Rezeption: Religion und Politik in der Antike, Spanien im Altertum, Bilder und Diskurse über Macht sowie die Rezeptionsgeschichte der Antike.
          Les textes réunis dans ce volume traitent de thèmes centraux dans l'histoire de l'Antiquité et sa réception. Y sont abordés l'histoire des religions, l'histoire politique, l'histoire de l'Espagne antique, l'iconographie et les discours du pouvoir dans l'Antiquité mais aussi dans ses réceptions aux autres périodes historiques.

          Lire la suite...

          Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

          La collezione di mummie animali del Museo Egizio di Torino: diagnostica, restauro e conservazione


          La collezione del Museo Egizio di Torino raccoglie al suo interno un ampio numero di mummie animali. Si tratta di manufatti complessi, costituiti principalmente da materiali di natura organica, quali tessuti (principalmente lino), resti scheletrici e talvolta tessuti molli e residui di sostanze impiegate per la mummificazione, oltre a materiale estraneo utilizzato per l'imbottitura (canne, bastoncini di legno, foglie di palma, sabbia, etc.).

          Il progetto di studio e conservazione di tale collezione, promosso e finanziato dal Museo Egizio, sotto la tutela della Soprintendenza Archeologia, Belle Arti, Paesaggio per la Città Metropolitana di Torino, è stato affidato per le diverse fasi a TecnArt Srl (diagnostica), Cinzia Oliva (restauro) e Consorzio Croma (realizzazione dei supporti). Esso mira ad aumentare la conoscenza di questa particolare categoria di manufatti e applicare strategie di conservazione utili a migliorare gli aspetti legati alla valorizzazione di questa significativa collezione. Lo studio convoglierà infine in un catalogo redatto dalla professoressa Salima Ikram.

          Inizialmente gran parte dei reperti sono stati sottoposti ad indagini radio/tomografiche, che hanno permesso di conoscere e studiare in modo non invasivo i contenuti degli involti. Nel caso di resti animali presenti all’interno di essi, lo studio verrà approfondito in modo tale da riuscire ad identificare le specie animali.

          Successivamente, il piano diagnostico è stato orientato per ottenere informazioni utili su diversi aspetti, attualmente ancora poco studiati per le mummie animali. L’impiego di differenti tecniche scientifiche, permetteranno ad esempio di approfondire lo studio delle diverse tipologie di bendaggio, la conoscenza dei materiali e delle tecniche impiegate per la realizzazione delle decorazioni, così come dei materiali impiegati nel processo di imbalsamazione e di migliorare le informazioni in merito alla cronologia di questi reperti.


          La seconda fase di questo progetto consiste nell’intervento di manutenzione e restauro, attualmente in corso in un laboratorio allestito all’interno del percorso museale, di un centinaio di manufatti che presentavano condizioni conservative particolarmente precarie. Su tali reperti, infatti, si può riscontrare un collasso della struttura, del modulo decorativo e dei tessuti esterni. Si notano quasi sempre lacune del tessuto, con conseguente fuoriuscita delle fibre vegetali, sovente utilizzate nell’imbottitura, o anche dei frammenti organici dell’animale conservati all’interno dell’involucro. Questi fattori rendono la fase di restauro particolarmente complessa: sarà necessario ridare solidità alla struttura e ripristinare la corretta lettura dei reperti, in vista della loro futura collocazione espositiva e/o di immagazzinaggio.

          Una volta terminato il restauro, infatti, la maggior parte delle mummie animali troverà posto nelle vetrine dedicate ai magazzini visitabili, all’interno del nuovo percorso espositivo.

          Fonte: TecnArt

          L’ illuminamento negli spazi museali: un compromesso tra conservazione e fruizione delle opere d’arte


          Una gamma completa di strumenti per l’analisi della luce nel campo del visibile e ultravioletto consentirà una più semplice valutazione dell’esposizione alla radiazione luminosa, garantendo il migliore compromesso tra conservazione e fruizione.

          Archaeological News on Tumblr

          Historic finds unearthed in Medieval cemetery

          What was supposed to be a simple excavation to allow for the expansion of a church cemetery turned...

          ArcheoNet BE

          BNA-contactdagen op 8-9 maart in Alkmaar: call for papers

          De Contactdagen voor Belgische en Nederlandse archeologen en bouwhistorici (BNA) 2018 zullen plaatsvinden op donderdag 8 en vrijdag 9 maart in het TAQA Theater de Vest in Alkmaar. Geïnteresseerde sprekers kunnen al reageren op de ‘call for papers’. Ook de inschrijvingen zijn intussen geopend.

          Volgende thema’s werden geselecteerd:

          1 Historische sensatie
          Vondsten gerelateerd aan historisch bekende personen of gebeurtenissen spreken zeer tot de verbeelding en de tastbaarheid ervan kan ook leiden tot nieuwe inzichten.

          2 Bouwen voor het geloof
          Bouwproces en ontwerp van religieuze gebouwen, toepasselijk bij het jubileum van 500 Jaar Grote Kerk Alkmaar.

          3 Ambachtelijke bedrijfslocaties
          Bedrijfsvoering en technologie van deelprocessen in relatie tot de ruimtelijke inrichting van omvangrijke bedrijfspercelen zoals wevers en ververs, bierbrouwers, scheepswerven en leerlooiers.

          4 Wonen bij arm en rijk
          Wooncultuur en technische woonvoorzieningen voor water, verwarming en hygiëne in verschillende sociale klassen.

          5 Varia

          Voorstellen voor papers of aanvullingen zijn welkom op
          Aanmelden kan via deze link. Na aanmelding ontvang je een digitale factuur.

          De inschrijfkosten bedragen:

          – Beide dagen: € 80
          – Eén dag: € 50
          – Beide dagen (student): € 60
          – Eén dag (student): € 30

          Jim Davila (

          Porcupines everywhere!

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          Questions about the Greek First Apocalypse of James fragments

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          The Joseph story as literature

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

          Vampire Conference in Transylvania!

          This is a really cool conference idea – holding a conference about Vampires in Transylvania, in Romania! It will be held in Sighisoara, which is the birthplace of Vlad Tepes, the historical figure who is regularly associated with Bram Stoker’s Count Dracula despite having little in common. Here’s a snippet from the call for papers: […]

          Jim Davila (

          Review of Curtis, Interpreting the Wisdom Books

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          ArcheoNet BE

          Gallo-Romeins heiligdom in Namen

          In Namen hebben archeologen van de Service Public de Wallonie de resten blootgelegd van een Gallo-Romeins heiligdom. Bekijk de reportage hieronder.

          Centre for the Study of Christian Origins

          The “Son of Man” Debate

          In this video, Professor Hurtado traces some of the facets concerning the “Son of Man” debate, and provides an up-to-date assessment of recent scholarship on the topic.

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

          Universities Spend Millions on Accessing Results of Publicly Funded Research

          Mark C. Wilson, a senior lecturer at Department of Computer Science, University of Auckland, writing for The Conversation (h/t Slashdot):

          University research is generally funded from the public purse. The results, however, are published in peer-reviewed academic journals, many of which charge subscription fees. I had to use freedom of information laws to determine how much universities in New Zealand spend on journal subscriptions to give researchers and students access to the latest research — and I found they paid almost US$15 million last year to just four publishers. There are additional costs, too. Paywalls on research hold up scientific progress and limit the public’s access to the latest information.

          Even better is that one university was paying markedly more for the same access than the others.

          It’s just four companies, doing this.  How long will this cartel be permitted to plunder us all?

          Bryn Mawr Classical Review

          2017.12.28: Carmen: étude d'une catégorie sonore romaine. Collection d'études anciennes. Série latine, 79

          Review of Maxime Pierre, Carmen: étude d'une catégorie sonore romaine. Collection d'études anciennes. Série latine, 79​. Paris: 2016. Pp. 336. €45.00 (pb). ISBN 9782251328942.

          Compitum - publications

          M. T. Schettino et C. Urlacher-Becht (dir.), Ipse dixit. L'autorité intellectuelle des Anciens


          Maria Teresa Schettino et Céline Urlacher-Becht (dir.), Ipse dixit. L'autorité intellectuelle des Anciens : affirmation, appropriations, détournements, Besançon, 2017.

          Éditeur : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté
          Collection : Institut des sciences et techniques de l'Antiquité (ISTA)
          234 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-577-0
          16 €

          Les Anciens sont demeurés, jusqu'au siècle des Lumières, des « Autorités » dont l'auctoritas apportait, au sens étymologique du terme, une forme d' “augmentation” à ceux qui s'inscrivaient dans leur sillage. Leurs déclarations et leurs écrits en général firent cependant, dès l'Antiquité, l'objet de réappropriations, voire de détournements plus ou moins affichés. Ce rapport ambivalent à l'autorité intellectuelle des Anciens, notamment dans l'usage de la citation et de l'argument d'autorité, est au centre de ce volume. Il réunit des contributions portant sur le détournement de l'autorité des Anciens dans l'Antiquité tardive et la réception des historiens antiques à l'époque humaniste.

          Lire la suite...

          American School of Classical Studies in Athens: Events

          Ετήσια Διάλεξη αφιερωμένη στον Κ. Θ. Δημαρά

          December 15, 2017 - 9:01 AM - ANNUAL LECTURE Μαρία Χριστίνα Χατζηιωάννου (Διευθύντρια Ερευνών, Ινστιτούτο Ιστορικών Ερευνών), David Armitage (Harvard University)

          Archaeology Magazine

          Ireland’s Genetic Map May Reflect Historic Events

          Ireland genetic mapDUBLIN, IRELAND—According to a BBC News report, a team of Irish, British, and American researchers identified ten genetic clusters in the modern Irish population that accord roughly with ancient boundaries. The 194 Irish individuals in the sample each had ties to specific regions dating back four generations. And although the differences between the groups were “really subtle,” the clusters seemed to reflect either the borders of Ulster, Leinster, Munster, and Connacht—the four Irish provinces—or the land's historical kingdoms. Geographical divisions created by mountains may also have played a role. “The likelihood is that it’s a combination of these things—a little bit of geography combined with wars or rivalry generates kinship in each distinct area,” said Gianpiero Cavalleri of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. The tests also detected Norwegian-like ancestry in some of the samples, which could reflect the presence of Vikings on the island. Cavalleri noted, however, that if the Vikings carried a large number of Irish individuals back to Norway, it could have reduced the genetic differences between the two groups. For more, go to “The Vikings in Ireland.”


          Blunt-Force Trauma Studied in Neolithic Skulls

          EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND—Live Science reports that Meaghan Dyer of the University of Edinburgh investigated a possible cause of injuries found on Neolithic skulls unearthed in western and central Europe. Sometimes the head wounds showed signs of healing, while in other instances they had been fatal. A replica wooden club, based upon one discovered in waterlogged soil on the banks of the Thames River in London and radiocarbon dated to around 3500 B.C., was crafted for the experiment. Dyer described the weapon as a “very badly made cricket bat” with a heavy tip. The club was then swung at synthetic skull models by a 30-year-old man in good health, who was instructed to fight as if he were in battle. The fractures he inflicted upon the skull models resemble those seen on the Neolithic remains. One in particular closely matched an injury found on a skull unearthed at a massacre site in Austria dated to 5200 B.C. Dyer concluded the beater “very clearly is lethal.” The study could lead to the re-evaluation of some ancient injuries that had been attributed to falls and accidents. For more, go to 10,000-Year-Old Turf War.

          Archaeological Sites in Afghanistan Found With Satellite Imagery

          Afghanistan mapping projectCHICAGO, ILLINOIS—According to a report in Science Magazine, researchers are using images taken by commercial and United States government satellites and military drones to look for archaeological sites in areas of Afghanistan that are too dangerous for fieldwork. Funded by the U.S. Department of State, the Afghan Heritage Mapping Partnership has tripled the number of recorded archaeological features in Afghanistan to more than 4,500. Among the discoveries, the team members have identified 119 caravanserais dating to the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. These vast mudbrick buildings, which each had room to shelter hundreds of travelers and thousands of camels, lined routes linking Isfahan, the capital of the Safavid Empire, located in what is now Iran, and the Mughal Empire in the Indian subcontinent. It had been thought that land travel declined after the Portuguese developed trade routes across the Indian Ocean in the sixteenth century. “But this shows a huge infrastructure investment of the Safavids a century later,” said Kathryn Franklin of the University of Chicago. To read about another recent discovery made using aerial and satellite imagery, go to “Hot Property.”

          December 13, 2017

          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          New from Luminos: Language of the Snakes: Prakrit, Sanskrit, and the Language Order of Premodern India

          Language of the Snakes: Prakrit, Sanskrit, and the Language Order of Premodern India
          By Andrew Ollett

          Language of the Snakes traces the history of the Prakrit language as a literary phenomenon, starting from its cultivation in courts of the Deccan in the first centuries of the common era. Although little studied today, Prakrit was an important vector of the kāvya movement and once joined Sanskrit at the apex of classical Indian literary culture. The opposition between Prakrit and Sanskrit was at the center of an enduring “language order” in India, a set of ways of thinking about, naming, classifying, representing, and ultimately using languages. As a language of classical literature that nevertheless retained its associations with more demotic language practices, Prakrit both embodies major cultural tensions—between high and low, transregional and regional, cosmopolitan and vernacular—and provides a unique perspective onto the history of literature and culture in South Asia.
          “Andrew Ollett’s book is one of those scholarly breakthroughs that happen, with luck, once or twice in a generation. It reveals the richness of Prakrit language and literary modes with a precision and depth of insight never seen before.” DAVID SHULMAN, Professor Emeritus, Hebrew University
          “Ollett offers a brilliant, original, and thoroughly engaging investigation of the complex language order of premodern India. Bringing to the fore the less-studied role of the literary Prakrits, his work makes a major contribution to our understanding of the history of language and literature in early India and beyond.” R. P. GOLDMAN, Catherine and William L. Magistretti Distinguished Professor in Sanskrit and India Studies, University of California, Berkeley
          ANDREW OLLETT works on the literary and intellectual traditions of premodern India.

          Turkish Archaeological News

          Arsameia on the Nymphaios

          Arsameia, located at the foot of the Mount Nemrut, is one of those magical places in Turkey that hide in the shadow of a famous tourist attraction located nearby. While the peak of Mount Nemrut regularly fills with an international crowd, especially at sunrise and sunset times, the ruins of ancient Arsameia silently wait for someone to drop by. Undoubtedly, this is for the benefit of those lucky people who decide to visit Arsameia, because they will be able to calmly and peacefully contemplate its wonderful reliefs, explore the tunnels and admire the picturesque views from the Acropolis of this summer capital of the Commagene Kingdom.

          Relief depicting the handshake between Heracles and Mithrydates, Site III in Arsameia

          The Heroic Age

          Global Digital Humanities Symposium at Michigan State University
          March 22-23, 2018

          We are committed to bringing a wide-ranging and diverse group of participants and presenters for our conference. To further this end, there will be funds available to assist or offset the costs of travel. There is an option to request consideration for travel funds in the proposal form. If you have any questions, please email
          Call for ProposalsDeadline to submit a proposal: Friday, December 15, 11:59pm EST
          Digital Humanities at Michigan State University is proud to extend its symposium series on Global DH into its third year. Digital humanities scholarship continues to be driven by work at the intersections of a range of distinct disciplines and an ethical commitment to preserve and broaden access to cultural materials. The most engaged global DH scholarship, that which MSU champions, values digital tools that enhance the capacity of scholarly critique to reflect a broad range of literary, historical, new media, and cultural positions, and diverse ways of valuing cultural production and knowledge work. Particularly valuable are strategies in which the digital form manifests a critical perspective on the digital content and the position of the researcher to their material.
          With the growth of the digital humanities, particularly in under-resourced and underrepresented areas, a number of complex issues surface, including, among others, questions of ownership, cultural theft, virtual exploitation, digital rights, endangered data, and the digital divide. We view the 2018 symposium as an opportunity to broaden the conversation about these issues. Scholarship that works across borders with foci on transnational partnerships and globally accessible data is especially welcome.
          Michigan State University has been intentionally global for more than 60 years, with over 1,400 faculty involved in international research, teaching, and service. For the past 20 years, MSU has developed a strong research area in culturally engaged, global digital humanities. Matrix, a digital humanities and social science center at MSU, has done dozens of digital projects in West and Southern Africa that have focused on ethical and reciprocal relationships and capacity building. WIDE has set best practices for doing community engaged, international, archival work with the Samaritan Collections, Archive 2.0. Today many scholars in the humanities at MSU are engaged in digital projects relating to global, indigenous, and/or underrepresented groups and topics.
          This symposium, which will include a mixture of presentation types, welcomes 300-word proposals related to any of these issues, and particularly on the following themes and topics by Friday, December 15, 11:59pm EST:
          • Critical cultural studies and analytics
          • Cultural heritage in a range of contexts
          • DH as socially engaged humanities and/or as a social movement
          • Open data, open access, and data preservation as resistance, especially in a postcolonial context
          • DH responses to crisis
          • How identity categories, and their intersections, shape digital humanities work
          • Global research dialogues and collaborations
          • Indigeneity – anywhere in the world – and the digital
          • Digital humanities, postcolonialism, and neocolonialism
          • Global digital pedagogies
          • Borders, migration, and/or diaspora and their connection to the digital
          • Digital and global languages and literatures
          • The state of global digital humanities community
          • Digital humanities, the environment, and climate change
          • Innovative and emergent technologies across institutions, languages, and economies
          • Scholarly communication and knowledge production in a global context
          Presentation Formats:
          • 3-5-minute lightning talk
          • 15-minute presentation
          • 90-minute workshop
          • 90-minute panel
          Proposal form

          Kristen Mapes
          Digital Humanities Coordinator
          College of Arts and Letters
          Michigan State University

          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          Archaeological News on Tumblr

          Spy satellites are revealing Afghanistan’s lost empires

          For archaeologists, Afghanistan is virtually off-limits for fieldwork, as Taliban forces battle the...

          Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

          Not Even Kossinnism Now...

          Re: Delay in Treasure process BlackBridgeBoy (Wed Dec 13, 2017 3:24 pm) writes:
          I also don't have a great deal of confidence in some of the FLOs. My local FLO took over a year to respond to my e-mails, after I had registered on the site. She hardly ever holds Finds Surgeries, and trying to track her down is like trying to nail a jelly to a wall. In the end, I contacted the FLO in the next district. She was completely the opposite, and responded promptly and kept me up-to-date with details of her Finds Surgeries. In fact, her last e-mail message contained the following, which might be worth noting...
          "The PAS policy on how we prioritise finds has changed slightly. Instead of concentrating on finds that are more than 300 years old, we now prioritise finds that date from before AD 1540, but we do still selectively record younger items too. It is also preferred that you hand in all your recently discovered finds, on the understanding that they will probably not all be recorded. This allows me to better understand the range of material being discovered, and helps me decide which objects and which geographical areas should be prioritised."
          Looks as though, apart from Treasure, you might be wasting your time sending in Finds that are post-1540, unless they are of special interest. My guess is that we are finding, and reporting, too much for them to cope with it!
          So if only certain geographical areas are being prioritised, that rather reduces the value of the PAS-favourite technique of dot-distribution maps.  Equally if there was a period in which finds from 1540 (so somewhere within the reign of Henry VII who died 1547) and 1696 were recorded following a period starting from an undefined date when those finds were no longer being recorded, intruduces yet another inconsistency in the PAS database.

          The thread is worth reading, detectorists seem to be getting a bit uneasy (as well they might) about the future of the PAS as a form of mitigation of their hobby. They seem to think that an increase in the numbers of detectorists and an increase in the exploitation of the archaeological record means that 'the government' "should" employ more FLOs to deal with it. Nobody seems to be asking why and whether there is a cheaper alternative for the nation which would also save lots of archaeological sites being trashed to fill collectors' pockets.

          Ancient World Mapping Center

          Panel Call for Papers, Limes Congress, Serbia, September 2018

          Please feel encouraged to visit the call for session #29 “Mapping the Edge of Empire” at and to propose a paper by March 1, 2018.


          ArcheoNet BE

          Verkoolde graankorrels in Bazel werpen nieuw licht op ontstaan landbouw

          De unieke vondst van verkoolde graankorrels uit de periode van 4850 tot 4500 vóór Christus in Bazel (Kruibeke) werpt nieuw licht op de omschakeling van de prehistorische jagers-verzamelaars naar een bestaan als landbouwer. Het nieuwe onderzoek suggereert dat de jagers-verzamelaars in Bazel al vroeg in contact kwamen met geteeld graan via immigranten, maar dat het nog zo’n 1000 jaar duurde voor ze zelf actief aan landbouw zouden doen. De resultaten van het onderzoek werden recent gepubliceerd in het vakblad ‘Journal of Anthropological Archaeology’.

          Je leest meer over het onderzoek in deze blog op

          Colleen Morgan (Middle Savagery)

          Archaeology Graduate Degrees – USA vs. UK

          Gloaming King’s Manor

          An archaeology PhD is an archaeology PhD, right? Well…kinda. Sorta. Actually, there are tremendous differences between the USA and the UK and when you add differences between institutional practices within countries there are a pretty vast array of experiences available. Is one better than the other? It depends on what you expect your CV to look like at the end of your program and what your goals are at the end of your PhD.

          Brief translation note: USA calls it graduate school, UK = postgraduate study. In the USA you write your Master’s Thesis and your PhD dissertation, in the UK you write a Master’s dissertation and a PhD thesis. Lecturers in the UK are Assistant Professors in the USA. Confused yet? I’m going to mostly use the USA nomenclature for this post.

          Again, I will emphasize that a lot of this is my own personal experience, not the result of a proper longitudinal study so your mileage may vary, objects may be closer than they appear in the mirror, take with a grain of salt, etc.

          I received my MA and PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, which in the USA is considered an R1 research institution. This is a designation for institutions with the highest level of research in the USA, so my experience may already vary considerably from other USA institutions. (For more about post-PhD destinations and universities in the USA & Canada, check out this article)


          At the outset, a major difference between the UK and USA is the application process. In the USA prospective students must take the GRE, a standardized test that costs $205 to take. Many students also take a specialist GRE course to train to take the test. The GRE is not required in the UK. At York you must give us samples of your writing, pass a certain academic standard and come recommended.

          USA prospective students also pay to apply to programs. It is currently $105 to apply to Berkeley if you are an American citizen, International students pay $125. You also have to pay for your University to forward your transcripts. It is not unusual to pay over $1000 to apply to USA programs. There aren’t any fees to apply in the UK.

          It is also highly competitive to apply for PhDs in the USA (I have no idea about Master’s). Several hundred people apply to the PhD program in Anthropology at Berkeley each year and only a small percentage receive a place, and an even smaller percentage receive funding. The stats are probably similar to Harvard’s Anthropology PhD program, about 4% acceptance rate.

          At York if you apply for a named, funded PhD (usually associated with an existing research project and advertised on, there is a competitive application process with interviews, etc. If you are applying as an unfunded PhD, you must approach a faculty member with a research project and then you work together to see if it is a feasible PhD project and you either stump up the cash or try to get funding. I’m not going to get into funding too much as it is a changing landscape (particularly with *rexit and *rump) but here’s some information on funding for Master’s and PhDs at York.

          The Master’s Degree

          My USA Master’s degree was also integrated into my PhD–it was considered the first year of study in the program which is common at USA research institutions. This mildly annoyed some other graduate students who had gone elsewhere to receive their Master’s degrees first. My MA consisted of two semesters (terms) of coursework followed up by a written and oral examination, which is different than non-integrated USA Master’s degrees (called terminal degrees), which can be either 1 or 2 years. All students in the cohort took History and Theory of Archaeology and Archaeological Research Strategies, both team taught by two of the archaeology faculty. No dissertation, but collectively the papers I wrote easily hit the word count required for a UK dissertation (15,000 – 20,000 words).

          At York our Master’s degrees are either 1 year full time or 2 years part time. We offer a wide range of MA and MSc degrees ranging from Digital Heritage to Field ArchaeologyPrehistory, Historical Archaeology, Medieval Archaeology, Cultural Heritage Management, Bioarchaeology, Conservation Studies, and several others. These are all led by faculty program directors and have both specialist overview courses and shorter methods-based courses that are open to any Master’s student. For example, I usually get a lot of Cultural Heritage Management and a few Buildings Archaeology students in my Analysis and Visualisation course which is an overview of the main digital technologies used for archaeological interpretation and they generally are quite interested in recording with photogrammetry, 3D reconstruction, that sort of thing as applied to buildings.

          The PhD

          My PhD process was, even amongst my own cohort, singular. So I’ll try to move into generalizations as much as possible, but given that there is so much variation, you’d best do your own investigations.

          USA PhDs take a long time. At Berkeley, the average is 8.1 years. When I tell my UK peers that it took me 7 years to finish, they are usually aghast. I am obviously a slacker or inept (which is probably true) because a full-time UK PhD takes, in theory, 3 years (6 years part-time).

          At Berkeley there is a progression process that involves a first year Master’s, writing your field statements (three long literature reviews), a second year review (I don’t even remember this), then writing your dissertation prospectus. You take coursework for at least three years, and there is a public archaeology outreach requirement at Berkeley as well. And you have to prove proficient at a second language. And a pedagogy class. Degrees also usually involve a couple of seasons of fieldwork and sometimes artefact processing so…it can take a while.

          At the end of your third year you take your oral qualifying exams. The oral exams are things of legend–I realized that my examiners had 150 years of collective experience. It was pretty awesome, actually–four extremely smart women discussed my research for three hours then we all ate blackberry cobbler together.  After advancing to candidacy comes…(wavy hands)…the dissertation writing years. The final defense is a public lecture.

          At York (and from what I have heard at other UK institutions) we have thesis advisory panels that consist of your supervisor and at least one additional member of staff. These panels are twice a year and at your second and fourth meeting the panel decides if you have done enough to progress with your degree. After the first meeting, you must submit material at each of these panels. The PhD students also have training workshops to prepare them for both academic and non-academic jobs.

          A few other quirks:

          • UK institutions are quite happy to have undergraduate students who continue on to their Master’s, then PhD, and sometimes even lecturing in the same institution. In the USA it is rare that you will be accepted to the same institution where you completed your undergraduate degree.
          • In the USA you can and are sometimes expected to take coursework in other departments. I had some outstanding courses from the Berkeley Centre for New Media, including The Social Life of New Media taught by the delightful Nancy Van House.
          • Some USA PhDs are required to have “outside advisors” who are either from a different department or another institution. Nancy Van House (from the School of Information) was mine.
          • UK PhDs are generally expected to get 1-2 postdocs before landing a lectureship, whereas USA PhDs can get hired straight into a position. But sometimes they have to adjunct for a while first.

          USA vs. UK?

          If I could do it all again? It’s actually hard to imagine. I think a UK Master’s degree would have prepared me pretty well for a USA PhD or if I had wanted to continue as a commercial archaeologist. And I have to say I’m pretty stoked about our Digital Heritage & Archaeology Information Systems degrees. We get lots of American students too, but you don’t have to take my word for it. Maybe more now that taxes on USA grad students may rise 400%!

          Though it took (relatively) aaaages, the coursework made the USA PhD magical. The Senses of Place course was team-taught by Rosemary Joyce & Ruth Tringham whose combined brilliance cannot be understated. The aforementioned Social Life of New Media. Lithic Technology by the legendary Steve Shackley who assigned absolute (obsidian-filled) mountains of reading. Even the undergraduate courses at Berkeley were incredible–I sat in on Laura Nader’s Controlling Processes, a class that was completely worthy of Berkeley’s fiery, radical reputation and is obviously resonant today.

          Basically if you can get a fully-funded PhD position at an R1 institution in the USA (and have a decade to spare and can figure out the taxes), go for it. But if you want a very directed course, no GREs or up-front fees, that takes a fraction of the time, a UK Master’s or PhD may be for you.

          David Meadows (rogueclassicism)

          Oxyrhynchus and the First Apocalypse of James: Collection History Just Got Murkier

          As is often the case with important discoveries related to the ancient world these days, this is a tale that has taken a while to unfold, although ab initio there were alarm bells going off for some of us.  Back on November 19, 2017 Brice C. Jones mentioned an important discovery just revealed at the Society of Biblical Literature conference in Boston. A paper was presented by Geoff Smith and Brent Landau on an “Oxyrhynchus Papyrus” which apparently contained the first Greek example of the First Apocalypse of James, which was previously known, but only in Coptic form (First Greek Fragments of a Nag Hammadi Text Discovered among Oxyrhynchus Papyri!). Inter alia, it was noted:

          The papyrus codex fragments are housed in the Sackler Library at Oxford University and were found during the dig season of 1904/05. The two fragments have different inventory numbers but are written in the same hand and belong to the same codex.

          Also mentioned:

          Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of this papyrus is that the scribe employed middle dots to separate syllables. This is rare in literary texts, but it does appear in school texts, which prompts the question as to how this document was used. Was it a school text? The editors suggest the papyri are fragments of a larger codex that probably contained the entire text of the First Apocalypse of James. Could the middle dots have served a liturgical function, facilitating easier reading on the part of the anaginoskon? The raison d’être of the codex is thus still being considered by the editors.

          This set off alarm bells for me because I could not immediately imagine a situation where a text of this sort would be used as a scribal teaching text. And so, I was moved to tweet, of course, and a conversation ensued:

          Screen Shot 2017-12-13 at 9.47.51 AM

          Screen Shot 2017-12-13 at 9.47.57 AM


          If you’re unfamiliar with the ‘origin story’ for the Oxyrhynchus Papyri, the link Dr Roberta Mazza mentions above is useful. But increasingly I find such origins stories in our discipline to become articles of faith which are never questioned. And every so often, we read about Oxyrhynchus Papyri being sold on the market and going to private collections; Brice Jones mentioned one a couple years ago (P.Oxy. 11.1351: From Oxyrhynchus to the Green Collection) as  did Roberta Mazza (Another Oxyrhynchus papyrus from the Egypt Exploration Fund distributions sold to a private collector). In the age of questioning collection history, the Oxyrhynchus Papyri ‘brand’ is probably as good as you can get. It’s precisely because of that that I had my questions: if this Greek Apocalypse of James papyrus genuinely was an Oxyrhynchus papyrus, prove it!

          A few days after the Twitter convo, we finally had an official press release from the University of Texas on this:

          The first-known original Greek copy of a heretical Christian writing describing Jesus’ secret teachings to his brother James has been discovered at Oxford University by biblical scholars at The University of Texas at Austin.   

          To date, only a small number of texts from the Nag Hammadi library — a collection of 13 Coptic Gnostic books discovered in 1945 in Upper Egypt — have been found in Greek, their original language of composition. But earlier this year, UT Austin religious studies scholars Geoffrey Smith and Brent Landau added to the list with their discovery of several fifth- or sixth-century Greek fragments of the First Apocalypse of James, which was thought to have been preserved only in its Coptic translations until now.

          “To say that we were excited once we realized what we’d found is an understatement,” said Smith, an assistant professor of religious studies. “We never suspected that Greek fragments of the First Apocalypse of James survived from antiquity. But there they were, right in front of us.”

          The ancient narrative describes the secret teachings of Jesus to his brother James, in which Jesus reveals information about the heavenly realm and future events, including James’ inevitable death.

          “The text supplements the biblical account of Jesus’ life and ministry by allowing us access to conversations that purportedly took place between Jesus and his brother, James — secret teachings that allowed James to be a good teacher after Jesus’ death,” Smith said. 

          Such apocryphal writings, Smith said, would have fallen outside the canonical boundaries set by Athanasius, Bishop of Alexandria, in his “Easter letter of 367” that defined the 27-book New Testament: “No one may add to them, and nothing may be taken away from them.”

          With its neat, uniform handwriting and words separated into syllables, the original manuscript was probably a teacher’s model used to help students learn to read and write, Smith and Landau said.

          “The scribe has divided most of the text into syllables by using mid-dots. Such divisions are very uncommon in ancient manuscripts, but they do show up frequently in manuscripts that were used in educational contexts,” said Landau, a lecturer in the UT Austin Department of Religious Studies.

          The teacher who produced this manuscript must have “had a particular affinity for the text,” Landau said. It does not appear to be a brief excerpt from the text, as was common in school exercises, but rather a complete copy of this forbidden ancient writing.

          Smith and Landau announced the discovery at the Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting in Boston in November and are working to publish their preliminary findings in the Greco Roman Memoirs series of the Oxyrhynchus Papyri.

          As might be expected, the story was picked up by various outlets and spun in various ways:

          … among others. The Newsweek coverage is especially noteworthy/blameworthy for trying to forge a link between this find and the James Ossuary from a few years ago. Things settled down a bit, and then a couple of days ago Candida Moss wrote an excellent corrective piece for the Daily Beast, with the intent of demonstrating — which she did — the actual significance of the find, devoid of the spin being put on it by various news outlets and websites. I encourage everyone to read it in its entirety:

          That said, what caught my eye in Dr Moss’ article was the following:

          The Greek of the First Apocalypse of James was discovered in the Oxyrhynchus collection, a famous group of papyrus fragments found by Grenfell and Hunt in an ancient trash heap in Egypt in the late nineteenth century. The collection is now housed at the University of Oxford. These particular fragments had been stored with a cluster of other Christian texts in the office of Oxford professor Dirk Obbink.

          It was only when Obbink invited Smith to try to identify some of them that the fragments were discovered […]

          So it seems these weren’t in the Sackler library when Drs Smith and Landau were given them. How can we be sure they are actually papyri from the Oxyrhynchus collection? How do we know they weren’t part of some auction somewhere with dubious overtones? I’ve previously blogged on Dr Obbink’s questionable handling of papyri (The Hobby Lobby Settlement: A Gathering Storm for Classicists? ) and think it’s salutary to point out (again … and echoing rather more specifically my Twitter query mentioned above) that Dr Obbink’s story on the origins of the Sappho papyrus changed/evolved over time. If we believe Scott Carroll, Dr Obbink is also in possession of a Gospel of Mark fragment that’s been rumoured to exist for years now — and it was sitting on his pool table. Scott Carroll, of course, was the person behind the acquisition of plenty of papyri for the Museum of the Bible and others which we have been waiting to be published for ages. That said, the Apocalypse of James papyrus might very well be a genuine Oxyrhynchus papyrus, but the office it came from — as opposed to the library, perhaps — is already under a ‘cloud of suspicion’ of sorts. Hopefully the official publication will provide rather more specific evidence of its collection history and how it ended up in Dr Obbink’s office for Smith and Landau to identify.

          UPDATE (the next day): see Brent Nongbri’s post for some additional background on the Oxyrhynchus Papyri:



          Thibaut Castelli (Spartokos a Lu)

          Les cultures antiques dans la zone des bouches du Danube

          Simion, G. (2003) : Culturi antice în zona gurilor Dunării, Volumul I, preistorie şi protoistorie, Cluj-Napoca, [Les cultures antiques dans la zone des bouches du Danube, Volume I, préhistoire et protohistoire]. Cet ouvrage est un recueil d’articles de l’auteur consacré … Lire la suite

          Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

          Indonesian island found to be unusually rich in cave paintings

          via the Australian National University, 13 December 2017: A tiny Indonesian island, previously unexplored by archaeologists, has been found to be unusually rich in ancient cave paintings following a study by researchers from The Australian National University (ANU). The team uncovered a total of 28 rock art sites dating from at least 2,500 years ago … Continue reading "Indonesian island found to be unusually rich in cave paintings"

          Jim Davila (

          The Talmud on the the Talmud's organization

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          BiblePlaces Blog

          Walking the Bible Lands: Registration Ends Today

          Registration for Walking the Bible Lands ends today. If you haven’t checked out the new free Christmas videos about “The Promise that Changed the World,” you can do that here. By joining Walking the Bible Lands, you get great new content every month, plus several bonuses right now.

          • Sites & Insights
          • Dig This!
          • Audio Devotional
          • Audiobook: Going Places with God
          • Audiobook: Walking in the Footsteps of Jesus

          Everything is explained right here.

          Registration closes at midnight and the price will never be this low again. Check it out here.

          Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

          Publishing 3D Models

          Between grading papers yesterday, I read through Elaine Sullivan’s and Lisa Snyder’s article in the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians on their work producing a digital model of the site of Karnak in Egypt. It’s a pretty nice article that offers a detailed discussion of the various design decisions and general strategy involved in making Digital Karnak a reality. As a Mac user, I wasn’t able to explore the actual 3D model which is available through their proprietary Vsim software, but it appears to combine the 3D model with chronological, historical, and archaeological information linked to various places in the immersive 3D environment. It sounds really cool!

          What interested me more than the model and its presentation was the authors’ discussion of how they approached publishing the Digital Karnak model. This has an immediate impact of a collaborative project that my Digital Press at the University of North Dakota is working on that looks to publish a group of 3D models of limestone and terracotta figurings from the site of Athienou on Cyprus. The challenges associated with disseminating 3D images and models are relatively familiar to anyone who has explored the recent Gabii project or (like me) was unable to explore Digital Karnak. The formats for 3D viewing are not standardized and even common 3D viewers like Unity3D require generous bandwidth and significant server speeds to function optimally. The medium through which a project presents a dynamic 3D model is part of the message and the limits of the various interfaces and technology directly impacts the way in which the model functions. While this is undoubtedly true of all forms of disseminating archaeological information – from texts to line drawing and artist’s reconstructions, the technical challenges associated with producing 3D models are distinct at present because they require third-party viewers. The limits of these viewers, their proprietary status, their compatibility with existing publication platforms, and their functionality all impact the ability of the authors, reviewers, and users to engage the 3D image.

          For Digital Karnak, this led to the production of their own 3D viewer and content which delivered both the 3D site, related “paradata” which presents argument for various design decisions, and interpretative and analytic texts. The article offers a useful summary of what a review of the entire 3D digital Karnak package would require. They identify four things that require review:  (1) the model, (2) the software, (3) the arguments and interpretations, and (4) related material hosted online separate from what is presented in the Vsim viewer. The authors further note that the deeply integrated character the interface, the model, and the arguments mean that revising the 3D model is not an easy task and in many cases is simply impossible.

          The deeply integrated character of the viewer, the data, and the argument creates a environment for the peer reviewer that is similar to reviewing field projects in which the arguments possible remain dependent on the nature of fieldwork and the archaeological information collected from the field. As with a digital model, the fundamental integration of methods, procedures, and arguments offer only limited opportunities for revision. Of course, field projects and elaborate 3D projects also tend to have multiple stages review as the projects develop from grant proposals to focus groups and the feedback of team members throughout the gestation of the project. Moreover, the iterative character of digital projects where the interface and data change with technology further complicate the review process. The long-term, iterative character of digital work creates a  scenario similar to open review where projects change in response to academic and public critique over time. 

          The Digital Karnak package was technically part of the article in the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, but for a reader like me without access to the digital content, the article stood well enough on its own to be a useful and substantive contribution. At the same, the absence of links – live or otherwise – through the article sketched out the limits of integration between the digital and textual.  


          Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

          Discovery of world’s oldest funerary fish hooks by ANU archaeologists

          via Heritage Daily, 12 December 2017: 12,000-year-old fish hooks found in a burial in Alor Island, Indonesia. Archaeologists from the Australian National University has discovered five fish hooks dating from the Pleistocene era, approximately 12,000 years ago on Indonesia’s Alor Island. Source: Discovery of world’s oldest funerary fish hooks by ANU archaeologists See also: Archeologists … Continue reading "Discovery of world’s oldest funerary fish hooks by ANU archaeologists"

          Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

          Archeologi impiegano droni per mappare l'antica arte rupestre venezuelana


          Una missione archeologica sta usando i droni per mappare l'antica arte rupestre venezuelana, lo rivela uno studio pubblicato sulla rivista Antiquity. 

          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          Online Database of Egyptian Early Dynastic inscriptions

          [First posted in AWOL 19 September 2011, updated 13 December 2017 (links fixed)]

          Database of Early Dynastic inscriptions
          By Ilona Regulski
          The current database assembles all available Early Dynastic inscriptions, covering the first attestations of writing discovered in tomb U-j (Naqada IIIA1, ca. 3250 BC) until the earliest known continuous written text in the reign of Netjerikhet–more commonly known as Djoser (ca. 2700 BC).[1]The database originated as a computerized Access document containing the collection of sources on which the author’s publication “A Palaeographic Study of Early Writing in Egypt” was based.[2]The latter was kindly reformed into a web compatible application by Prof. Erhart Graefe, former head of the Department of Egyptology and Coptology at the Westfalische-Wilhelms Universität, Münster, Germany, which hosts the database. I wish to express my sincere gratitude to him. Additional information on bibliography, reading and interpretation of signs and whereabouts of the inscriptions have kindly been provided by: Eva-Maria Engel, Annelies Bleeker, Catherine Jones, Kathryn Piquette, the students of the third MA semester 2012-2013 from the FU Berlin (Stephanie Bruck, Dominik Ceballos Contreras, Viktoria Fink, Stephan Hartlepp, Ingo Küchler, Soukaina Najjarane, Niklas Schneeweiß, Melanie Schreiber, Dina Serova, Elisabeth Wegner).[3]

          The database contains more then 4500 inscriptions and is constantly updated. Each inscription was assigned a source number. The source list, published by J. Kahl in Das System der ägyptischen Hieroglyphenschrift in der 0.-3. Dynastie, 171-417, was the point of departure.[4]The sequence of the Kahl list is chronological but this could not be followed when new sources were added as they were found. About 700 sources could be added to his collection starting with number 4000. Multiple impressions from the same cylinder seal were incorporated as one source since they are copies of one inscription. 

          DPregister DKregister Site Region Locality Type Depository Register no Click on button

          Compitum - publications

          A. Alvar Nuño, Cadenas invisibles. Los usos de la magia entre los esclavos en el Imperio romano


          Antón Alvar Nuño, Cadenas invisibles. Los usos de la magia entre los esclavos en el Imperio romano, Besançon, 2017.

          Éditeur : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté
          Collection : Institut des sciences et techniques de l'Antiquité (ISTA)
          224 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-585-5
          20 €

          Esta monografía analiza el papel que jugaron las prácticas mágicas en la vida de los esclavos romanos, prestando especial atención a la manera en que la magia se usaba para resolver conflictos interpersonales. El planteamiento metodológico que se emplea en el análisis de los materiales parte de las teorías sociológicas sobre agencia. Asimismo, el concepto de magia que se emplea la considera como un subsistema de la religión a la que se recurre para resolver desgracias cotidianas. En este sentido, se plantea que la magia era un recurso cultural habitual al cual los esclavos tenían un acceso restringido y limitado según los contextos sociales en los que se empleara.

          Cet ouvrage s'attache à comprendre le rôle et les usages de la magie au quotidien par les esclaves dans le monde romain antique. Le livre porte une attention particulière à l'usage, positif et/ou négatif, de la magie dans les relations interpersonnelles. L'ouvrage s'appuie sur une lecture méthodologique des textes magiques qui tient compte des apports de diverses disciplines des sciences humaines dont la sociologie, l'anthropologie, les sciences des religions. Cette lecture permet de déconstruire les usages de la magie et montrer que les utilisateurs ne pensaient pas être dans une pratique hétérodoxe mais respecter leur foi religieuse par d'autres moyens. Pour les esclaves, c'étaient aussi le moyen d'intégrer le monde du religieux des maîtres dont ils étaient exclus.

          Lire la suite...

          Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

          World’s scientists turn to Asia and Australia to rewrite human history

          via The Conversation, 08 December 2017 Researchers in human evolution used to focus on Africa and Eurasia – but not anymore. Discoveries in Asia and Australia have changed the picture, revealing early, complex cultures outside of Africa. Source: World’s scientists turn to Asia and Australia to rewrite human history

          Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

          Nel mare dell'intimità: l’archeologia subacquea racconta l’Adriatico


          A Trieste, per la prima volta insieme, un migliaio di reperti da musei italiani, croati, sloveni e montenegrini, per raccontare a tutti, con gli occhi dell'Archeologia subacquea, le rotte, i passaggi, gli uomini e le storie del nostro Mare Adriatico.

          ArcheoNet BE

          Pompeii, the immortal city

          In het beursgebouw in Brussel loopt momenteel de tentoonstelling ‘Pompeii, the immortal city’. Je ontdekt het dagelijkse leven in de antieke stad Pompeii en het drama dat dit leven voor altijd stil deed staan. Je beleeft de verwoesting van de stad door de uitbarsting van de Vesuvius in 79 n.Chr. en maakt kennis met de inwoners die verstard zijn in de assen van de vulkaan. De tentoonstelling ‘Pompeii, the immortal city’ loopt nog tot 15 april 2018. Meer info op

          Bekijk ook de Ketnet-reportage over de expo met archeoloog Sadi Maréchal.

          Jim Davila (

          Hasmonean-era findings at Susya

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          That gold-lettered Turkish Torah is a "crude fake"

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          News on St. Catherine's Monastery

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          ArcheoNet BE

          Het verhaal van Romeins Limburg en van Coriovallum en haar thermen

          Op woensdag 20 decemer organiseert de Antwerpse Vereniging voor Romeinse Archeologie (AVRA) de lezing ‘Romeinen en Galliërs, soldaten, boeren en stadsbewoners. Het verhaal van Romeins Limburg en van Coriovallum en haar thermen’. Gastspreker is Karen Jeneson.

          Na de verovering door Julius Caesar halverwege de 1ste eeuw v. Chr. breekt, in het gebied dat nu Limburg is, een tijdperk aan van ingrijpende transformatie. De Gallische samenleving, gekenmerkt door zelfvoorzienende boeren, verandert op werkelijk alle gebieden, zoals wonen, reizen, voeding, taal en gebruiksvoorwerpen. Op de lössgronden van Limburg ontstaat het zogenaamde villa-landschap, waar op grote schaal graan voor de markt wordt geproduceerd. Bovendien leggen de Romeinen verharde wegen aan en stichten ze steden, tot dan ongekende fenomenen in de regio. Door de aanwezigheid van Romeinse legioenen en hulptroepen komen er nieuwe inwoners uit alle hoeken van het Romeinse rijk, die allemaal hun eigen stempel op de samenleving drukken.

          In deze lezing staat de transformatie van Limburg in de eerste vier eeuwen van onze jaartelling centraal. Naast het platteland met haar villa’s staat ook de vicus Coriovallum, het huidige Heerlen, centraal. Daarbij komt het publieke badhuis van de stad, de thermen, aan bod. Hoewel het badhuis, een van de best bewaarde exemplaren van Noordwest Europa, al in 1940-41 is opgegraven, is gebleken dat het nog lang niet al zijn geheimen heeft prijsgegeven. Nieuw onderzoek in het kader van een grootschalige restauratie van de thermen, dat momenteel wordt uitgevoerd, zal een antwoord moeten geven op de vele nog onbeantwoorde vragen.

          Praktisch: de lezing start om 20u in de UA-Stadscampus (Rodestraat 14, Antwerpen). De toegang is gratis. De lezing wordt georganiseerd i.s.m. de Vakgroep Geschiedenis van de Universiteit Antwerpen.

          Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

          La realtà virtuale come forma di accessibilità a siti archeologici inaccessibili


          Molto spesso la realtà virtuale (VR) è associata ad attività impossibili da svolgere nella vita reale, come volare in mezzo alle città, camminare nello spazio o esplorare gli oceani. Ma già da qualche tempo, i ricercatori stanno impiegando questa tecnica per rendere accessibili siti archeologici difficili da raggiungere. 

          Faculty of Classics, Cambridge

          The Cambridge Greek Play 2019

          The Cambridge Greek Play for 2019 has been announced.

          American School of Classical Studies in Athens: Events

          The North Cemetery at Ayios Vasilios and the transformation of early Mycenaean society

          December 20, 2017 - 1:05 PM - Johannes Sundwall lecture Prof. Sofia Voutsaki (University of Groningen)

          The North Cemetery at Ayios Vasilios and the transformation of early Mycenaean society

          December 20, 2017 - 1:05 PM - Johannes Sundwall lecture Prof. Sofia Voutsaki University of Groningen

          James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

          Looking Forward to The Last Jedi

          I assume that other readers of this blog have been surprised by my lack of comment on what others all over the internet have been talking about, namely the new trailers that have been released for The Last Jedi. Things have been incredibly busy, but I am indeed planning on seeing it. I’m more worried […]

          American School of Classical Studies in Athens: News

          Blegen Library Christmas holiday hours 2017

          During the Christmas holiday period, the Blegen library will be closed to visitors on the following days: December 25-26, 2017, January 1, January 6, 2018. No new cards will be issued and no orientations will take place between December 25th and January 6th.

          Paola Arosio and Diego Meozzi (Stone Pages' Archaeonews)

          Study shows how Neolithic weapons were made to kill with one strike

          A weapon used by Neolithic people could kill with one blow, according to a new study which used forensic detection methods to recreate violence from the period. Experts created a...

          New theory: Stonehenge was built as part of a fertility cult

          Accortding to a new study, Stonehenge could have been built as part of a fertility cult, with the stones positioned to cast phallic shadows inside the monument during midsummer. Archaeologist...

          Uncovering varied pathways to agriculture

          Around 15,000 years ago, the Natufian culture appeared in what is today's Middle East. This culture, which straddled the border between nomadic and settled lifestyles, had diverse, complex origins. This...

          Mapping Venezuelan rock art

          Rock engravings located in Western Venezuela - including some of the largest recorded anywhere in the world - have been mapped in unprecedented detail by University College London (UCL) researchers....

          American School of Classical Studies in Athens: Events

          Book Launch: Monica M. Jackson, “Hellenistic Gold Jewellery in the Benaki Museum, Athens”

          December 19, 2017 - 11:23 AM - BOOK LAUNCH Angelos Delivorrias, Stavros A. Paspalas, Maria Diamandi, Irini Papageorgiou, Annita P. Panaretou

          Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

          XXV edizione del Salone Internazionale del Restauro, dei Musei e delle Imprese Culturali


          Dal 21 al 23 marzo 2018 torna, nella storica sede di Ferrara, il Salone Internazionale del Restauro, dei Musei e delle Imprese Culturali, giunto alla sua XXV edizione con il patrocinio del MiBACT - Ministero dei Beni e delle Attività Culturali e del Turismo.

          Bryn Mawr Classical Review

          2017.12.27: Demotic Graffiti and Other Short Texts Gathered from many Publications (Short Texts III 1201-2350). Studia Demotica, 12

          Review of S. P. Vleeming, Demotic Graffiti and Other Short Texts Gathered from many Publications (Short Texts III 1201-2350). Studia Demotica, 12. Leuven; Paris; Bristol, CT: 2015. Pp. lxxiv, 595; 1 p. of plates. €92.00 (pb). ISBN 9789042931879.

          2017.12.26: Seneca: Hercules furens. Companions to Greek and Roman tragedy

          Review of Neil Bernstein, Seneca: Hercules furens. Companions to Greek and Roman tragedy. London; New York: 2017. Pp. xv, 151. $88.00. ISBN 9781474254922.

          Compitum - publications

          A. Gonzales et G. Tirologos, L'artisanat à l'époque romaine. Les ateliers d'Epomanduodurum


          Antonio Gonzales et Georges Tirologos, L'artisanat à l'époque romaine. Les ateliers d'Epomanduodurum, Besançon, 2017.

          Éditeur : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté
          Collection : Institut des sciences et techniques de l'Antiquité (ISTA)
          10 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-592-3
          15 €

          Le DVD « L'artisanat à l'époque romaine : Les ateliers d'Epomanduodurum » est un parcours en trois dimensions (3D) avec reconstitution et animation de l'ensemble architectural, artisanal, domestique et environnemental du deuxième centre urbain et économique de la Franche-Comté antique, la Séquanie romaine. Intégrant les derniers acquis des découvertes archéologiques et des études scientifiques sur les métiers, les techniques et les environnements naturels antiques, ce DVD se propose de reconstituer les savoir-faire à partir des artefacts archéologiques et des études sur ces métiers antiques dont certaines spécificités (salaisons, fumaisons) sont au cœur du patrimoine gastronomique moderne. »

          Lire la suite...

          Archaeology Magazine

          Maori Obsidian Use Explored

          New Zealand obsidianAUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND—The New Zealand Herald reports that Caleb Gemmell of the University of Auckland used data on obsidian artifacts unearthed at pre–European contact Maori sites on the North Island to explore possible ways the Maori traveled throughout New Zealand. Previous testing had determined where the material originated. The study suggests that distinct communities of Maori were obtaining obsidian from different sources, even though they may have been geographically close to each other. “This suggests that simple economic explanations for obtaining obsidian based on the distance of an archaeological site to an obsidian source were not valid, and more interesting social factors were coming into play,” Gemmell said. For more, go to “Obsidian and Empire.”

          Medieval Grave Excavated in Southern Bulgaria

          Bulgaria medieval PlovdivPLOVDIV, BULGARIA—Archaeology in Bulgaria reports that researchers led by Maya Martinova of the Plovdiv Museum of Archaeology found an arrow in the chest area of a skeleton dating to the eleventh or twelfth century A.D. at the site of the Antiquity Odeon, which was used by the ancient Greeks and Romans for theatrical performances. The site was used as a cemetery during the medieval period, when the city of Plovdiv changed hands between the Bulgarian Empire and the Byzantine Empire several times. Archaeologists do not know if the arrow killed the person in the grave, or if it was placed there as a funeral gift for a warrior. Scientists from Plovdiv Medical University will try to help answer that question. The researchers will also try to determine the person’s age, gender, and health status at the time of death. The excavation is being conducted prior to the conservation and renovation of the city’s archaeological park. For more on archaeology in Bulgaria, go to “Thracian Treasure Chest.”

          Ritual Vessels Discovered in 3,100-Year-Old Tomb in China

          China ritual tureenSHAANXI PROVINCE, CHINA—According to a report in Live Science, a 3,100-year-old tomb in a necropolis in northwest China has yielded a collection of heavily decorated bronze ceremonial vessels. Researchers led by Zhankui Wang of the Shaanxi Provincial Institute of Archaeology think the tomb’s occupant may have been a high-ranking chief or chief’s spouse. The vessels may have been spoils of war, since at the time of the burial, the Zhou people were at war with a rival dynasty. The vessels are thought to have been used to serve food during ceremonies. Among the containers are two wine vessels shaped like deer and a four-handled bronze tureen covered with 192 spikes, engravings of dragons and birds, and images of bovine heads. To read about another recent discovery in China, go to “Tomb Couture.”

          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          Editorial: Network Neutrality

          If you read The Ancient World Online you are interested in Open Access Scholarship. And if you are interested in Open Access Scholarship you should support Network Neutrality.

          The American Library Association: Network Neutrality
          Network neutrality is the concept of online non-discrimination. It is the principle that consumers and citizens should be free to get access to—or to provide—the Internet content and services they wish, and that consumer access should not be regulated based on the nature or source of that content or service. Information providers—which may be websites, online services, etc., and who may be affiliated with traditional commercial enterprises but who also may be individual citizens, libraries, schools, or nonprofit entities—should have essentially the same quality of access to distribute their offerings. "Pipe" owners (carriers) should not be allowed to charge some information providers more money for the same pipes, or establish exclusive deals that relegate everyone else (including small noncommercial or startup entities) to an Internet "slow lane." This principle should hold true even when a broadband provider is providing Internet carriage to a competitor.

          Why is Net Neutrality an Issue?

          Net neutrality was a founding principle of the Internet. It is a principle incorporates both the common carrier laws that have long governed the phone lines used for both voice telephone and dial-up access. Now, many consumers receive broadband service over other technologies (cable, DSL) that are not subject to the same common-carriage requirements. While these technologies are unquestionably superior to dial-up, the lack of enforceable net neutrality principles concerns us. Cable and DSL companies are planning to engage in “bit discrimination” by providing faster connections to websites and services that pay a premium, or by preferring their own business partners when delivering content. As the Internet moves forward, is it really wise to leave net neutrality behind?
          back to top

          Why Does Net Neutrality Matter to Libraries?

          The American Library Association is a strong advocate for intellectual freedom, which is the “right of all peoples to seek and receive information from all points of view without restriction.” Intellectual freedom is critical to our democracy because we rely on people’s ability to inform themselves. The Internet connects people of diverse geographical, political, or ideological origins, greatly enhancing everyone’s ability to share and to inform both themselves and others.
          Our libraries’ longstanding commitment to freedom of expression in the realm of content is well-known; in the context of the net neutrality debate, however, we believe it is equally important to stress that the freedom of libraries and librarians to provide innovative new kinds of information services will be central to the growth and development of our democratic culture. A world in which librarians and other non-commercial enterprises are of necessity limited to the Internet’s “slow lanes” while high-definition movies can obtain preferential treatment seems to us to be overlooking a central priority for a democratic society – the necessity of enabling educators, librarians, and all citizens to inform themselves and each other just as much as the major commercial and media interests can inform them.
          With modern technology, individuals and small groups can produce rich audio and video resources that used to be the exclusive domain of large companies. We must work to ensure that these resources are not relegated to second-class delivery on the Internet—or else the intellectual freedoms fostered by the Internet will be constrained.
          One application that libraries are especially invested in is distance learning. Classes offered using audio and video streamed over the Internet have huge potential to bring expert teachers into the homes of students around the globe.

          The Issue of Regulation vs. Competition

          Some of the carriers argue that net neutrality is an unnecessary regulation that will stifle competition and slow deployment of broadband technologies. But the truth is there is already only a little competition among broadband providers. In most parts of the U.S., there are at most two companies that provide a broadband pipe to your home: a telephone company and a cable company. Both of these industries are already regulated because they are natural monopolies: once a cable is laid to your house, there really is no rational, non-wasteful reason to lay another cable to your house, since you only need one at a time; therefore, most communities only allow one cable or telephone company to provide service to an area, and then regulate that company so to prevent abuse of the state-granted monopoly. Thus, we don’t allow phone companies to charge exorbitant amounts for local service; nor do we permit a cable company to avoid providing service to poor neighborhoods.
          Contrast the quasi-monopoly on broadband pipes with the intensely competitive market of web content and services. There are millions of websites out there and countless hours of video and audio, all competing for your time and money.
          With the advent of broadband connections, the telecom and cable companies have found a new way to exploit their state-granted monopoly: leverage it into a market advantage in Internet services and content. This would harm competition in the dynamic, innovative content and services industry without solving the lack of real competition in the broadband access market.
          In contrast, net neutrality will encourage competition in online content and services to stay strong. By keeping broadband providers from raising artificial price barriers to competition, net neutrality will preserve the egalitarian, bit-blind principles that have made the Internet the most competitive market in history.


          The American Library Association supports net neutrality legislation that preserves the competitive online markets for content and services. Bandwidth and access should be offered on equal terms to all willing to pay. Otherwise, broadband providers will be free to leverage their quasi-monopolies into lucrative but market-distorting agreements. The vitality of voices on the Internet is critical to the intellectual freedom that libraries around the world are trying to protect and promote. Laws that preserve net neutrality are the best way to preserve a vibrant diversity of viewpoints into the foreseeable future.

          Where can I find out more?

          Recent News


          Additional Resources

          December 12, 2017

          Calenda: Histoire romaine

          Antiquité et livres de jeunesse

          La production destinée à la jeunesse est un champ éditorial en pleine expansion. Plus spécifiquement, l’ouvrage de jeunesse est un espace de création inventif et florissant. Depuis une vingtaine d’années, il est aussi devenu un objet de recherche et de formation dans le cadre des métiers du livre et de l’enseignement. Il fait l'objet d'une collection aux Presses universitaires de Bordeaux : « Études sur le livre de jeunesse », dirigée par Brigitte Louichon. Cette collection accueille des monographies ou des recueils collectifs destinés aux étudiants, enseignants, formateurs et chercheurs, ainsi qu’à tous les professionnels du livre. Les problématiques et les approches sont variées : elles portent sur des thématiques, des auteurs, des époques, des espaces, des genres, des questions éditoriales et d’enseignement.

          Paola Arosio and Diego Meozzi (Stone Pages' Archaeonews)

          Oetzi the Iceman gets the big screen treatment

          There can be no more famous a person in European archaeology than 'Oetzi the Iceman'. The remains of this 5,300 year old Alpine hunter have been at the centre of...

          Unusual Bronze Age find in Suffolk

          As part of the standard pre-construction archaeological investigations, before any major development in the UK, some remarkable finds have been made on a housing development near Bury St Edmunds in...

          Glimpse of Britain's Neolithic civilization

          Around 140 kilometres west-southwest of London, midway between the monuments of Stonehenge and Avebury, an extraordinary Early Neolithic long barrow known as Cat's Brain was excavated this past summer by...

          Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

          Buy Without papers, Get cheated Like the Fule You Are

          'This 700-year-old Torah scroll was seized by authorities in Turkey recently. Police acted on a tip after hearing antique dealers were selling it for $1.9 million in the southern province of Mugla. The dealers were arrested, according to Turkish media'. 

          This is another of those 'brown' manuscripts from the Turkish/Syria border region.  I guess the perception is that since documents yellow with age, really old' documents should be brown. I'm guessing this is done with acid (I wonder what coca-cola does to papyrus over a few weeks?).

          Like the rest, the 'Biblical scholar wannabe' who'd buy this dodgy junk would be fooled out of his money:
          17 godz.
          This is not a Torah scroll. the text was google translated from Arabic. This is fake.

          If you are buying antiquities on any market that does not offer proper and 100% watertight documentation of origins - every emptor should jolly well caveat.

          UPDATE 12th December 2017
          Journalist refused to accept they'd got it wrong until she finally decided to ask somebody who even she accepted knows about such things... 

          He has a wife you know

          STIs in Antiquity (Part II)

          Ever wonder what the worst thing to come out of a mythical King’s penis might have been? Feel the need to be put off figs forever? Do you own a hairy spider amulet?

          If you’ve answered yes to any of these, and even if you haven’t, then join us as we continue to look at STIs in antiquity and finally contraception.

          As per part one, no swearing, but listener discretion advised!

          Music by Brakhage (Le Vrai Instrumental)

          Check out this episode!

          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          Open Access Journal: Iris: Journal of the Classical Association of Victoria

          [First posted in AWOL 30 August 2011. Updated 12 December 2017]

          Iris: Journal of the Classical Association of Victoria
          ISSN 1448-1421

          What is Iris?

          Iris is the journal of the Classical Association of Victoria. The New Series of the journal was founded in 1988. The Journal Editor is Dr Rhiannon Evans of La Trobe University. The Honorary Secretary is Dr. K.O. Chong-Gossard, lecturer at the University of Melbourne. Iris is published with the support of the Muriel P. Blackwood Memorial Fund.

          What is in Iris?

          The most recent issue - Volume 24, 2011 - is now available for download.
          Iris is now a refereed publication. This means that articles published in the refereed section undergo a peer review process. This involves assessment of the publication in its entirety (not merely an abstract or extract), before publication, and by appropriately independent, qualified experts. Independent in this context means independent of the author.

          How do I contribute to Iris?

          Persons interested into submitting articles or letters to the journal should send them to either the Journal Editor (Rhiannon Evans) or the Honorary Secretary (K.O. Chong-Gossard). Contributors should state whether they wish their article to be refereed or not.

        • ‘Iris’ Volume 28 – 2015
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 27 – 2014
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 26 – 2013
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 24 – 2011
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 23 – 2010
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 22 – 2009
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 21 – 2008
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 20 – 2007
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 19 – 2006
        • ‘Iris’ Volume 18 – 2005
        • ‘Iris’ Volumes 16-17 – 2003-4
        • ‘Iris’ Style Sheet

        • Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

          Act to enable UK to implement the Hague Convention

          Act to enable the United Kingdom to implement the Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict of 1954 comes into force 12th December 2017.

           That was the nineteen FIFTY-four Convention.

          If only they'd given Brexiting as much thought and debate...

          DMSC claim can only raise a hollow laugh, to be 'leaders' you'd have had to implement it half a century ago,

          Shawn Graham (Electric Archaeology)

          Let’s Imagine

          There’s a game I play, sometimes, when I wander around campus. You’ve probably played it too. My version of ‘let’s imagine’ always seems to end up focussed on the physical fabric of the university. How I’d make it look. What buildings I’d build. Articulations with the larger city. So let’s imagine.

          Carleton has an enormous hole in its campus, overlooking one of the prettiest locations in the city, Dow’s Lake. Here’s the map:

          See all that empty grey area above the words ‘Carleton University’? Gravelled parking lot, snow dump in the winter. And that’s it. Here’s an aerial photo:

          I’d love to fill that with a ginormous building that fronts onto Dow’s Lake. This building would be a kind of studio space for every national, regional, and local museum in the Ottawa area. Every single one of these institutions can show but a fraction of their collection. So, I’d love to build a space where materials can be rotated in, so that they are available for research, teaching, and the public. A giant living lab for our national collections. Since the collections span every department and faculty we have, I see no reason why this couldn’t break down silos and barriers across disciplines, in our teaching. I’d have a big ol’ international design competition, make the thing a jewel, too.

          Apparently, our campus master plan  imagines this as a ‘North Campus’, filled with lots of different buildings. Sounds good. Can we make one of them be the Carleton Musea?

          …while I’m at it, I’d like a pony, too.

          (featured image, Michelle Chiu, Disney Concert Hall,

          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          The (Proto-)Masoretic Text: A Ten-Part Series by Prof. Emanuel Tov

          by Prof. Emanuel Tov

          — Part 1—
          The Bible and the Masoretic Text
          The Masoretic Text (MT), whether in its consonantal form (Proto-MT) or its full form, is the commonly used version of the Hebrew Bible, considered authoritative by Jews for almost two millenia.[1] From the invention of the printing press, all Hebrew editions of the Hebrew Bible have been based on a text form of MT, with the exception of publications of the Samaritan Pentateuch or eclectic editions.[2]
          The roots of MT and its popularity go back to the first century of the Common Era. Before that period, only the proto-rabbinic (Pharisaic) movement made use of MT, while other streams in Judaism used other Hebrew textual traditions.
          In other words, before the first century of the Common Era, we witness a textual plurality among Jews, with multiple text forms conceived of as “the Bible,” or Scripture, including the Hebrew source upon which the ancient Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, the Septuagint (LXX), was built...
            Table of Contents
            Part 1   –   The Bible and the Masoretic Text

            Part 2   –   Judean Desert Texts Outside Qumran
            Part 3   –   Socio-Religious Background and Stabilization
            Part 4   –   The Scribes of Proto-MT and their Practices
            Part 5   –   Precise Transmission of Inconsistent Spelling

            Part 6   –   Scribal Marks
            Part 7   –   Key Characteristics of the (Proto-)MT
            Part 8   –   Other Biblical Text Traditions
            Part 9   –   Evaluating (Proto-)MT
            Part 10 –   Editions and Translations of (Proto-)MT

          David Stuart (Maya Decipherment)

          How to Identify Real Fakes: A User’s Guide to Mayan “Codices”

          by Michael Coe (Yale University) and Stephen Houston (Brown University)

          Forgeries have long been a scourge to archaeology and art history alike, rearing up whenever money mixes with “excessive desire and bad judgment” (Meyer 1973:103, see also Lapatin 2000:45). According to Ascanio Condivi, even Michelangelo got into the act by passing off one of his carvings as a valuable antiquity (Holroyd 1903:21–22). Yet fakes also serve as fascinating evidence in the history of crime, especially for that special con by which the cleverness of a forger matches wits with scholars.

          Fakers may win for a time—think of the “Etruscan warriors” concocted by the brothers Pio and Alfonso Riccardi and later sold to the Metropolitan Museum of Art (von Bothmer and Noble 1961). But mostly they lose. No one can look today at van Meegeren’s banal paintings and think, as Hermann Göring did, that Vermeer had a hand in their making (Godley 1967). Scientific techniques play a role in separating fakes from genuine pieces, along with a systematic probing of provenience, outright confessions—proudly made in some cases (Beltracchi and Kunst)—and the mere fact that every generation draws on greater knowledge. Faking becomes harder and harder, and the myth, say, that a forger knows more than specialists in Maya art and writing is scarcely credible. The wise analyst must also ask the standard gumshoe questions: who was the victim, who the perpetrator, was there any intent to deceive, was harm done as a result (Chappell and Polk 2009:3, 16)?

          There are, no doubt, works that continue to puzzle. The Getty Kouros, for example, is either a fake that deeply skews our understanding of Greek art or it is a revealing anomaly that shows our “imperfect understanding of what remains, and the limits of our perspectives, preconceptions, and comprehension” (Lapatin 2000:46). And then there are the stunningly terrible fakes that do not so much represent a “crisis of criteria” (Lapatin 2000:43), a tough decision to be made between competing claims, as obvious forgeries that would fool no scholar.

          Think about Maya fakes. There are many of them (Eberl and Prager 2000; Eberl and Prem 2011), some published, to our amazement, in important traveling exhibits (Gallenkamp and Johnson 1985:pls. 62, 63, 69, 72, 74). A few have needed further research. Typically, the more challenging cases are colonial, with only a few purported signs or images of indigenous nature (Hanks 1992; Jones 1992). But, under hard scrutiny, they too eventually yield their secrets. As for “Pre-Columbian books,” the tell-tale indicator is whether they exist as a pastiche, a rough assortment of glyphs or pictures. Often in nonsensical order, and mostly lifted from well-known sources, the glyphs and images tumble out in combinations that are, to expert eyes, anachronistic, stylistically inconsistent or incoherent, and contrary to recent decipherments of Maya writing.

          With Maya books, of which only four intact examples remain, there is no real “crisis of criteria.” Quite simply, the fakes are glaring, at times laughable: who would be fooled by them today? In truth, few scholars ever were. The first such studies were done by Frans Blom (1935a, 1935b; 1946) and by a sprinkling of others (Brainerd 1948; Wassén 1942).

          The “codices” tend to have a number of attributes, including:

          (1) recognizable day and month signs, sometimes interspersed with wishful squiggles intended to simulate glyphs (Figure 1; compare with Figure 3, below);


          Figure 1. Comparison of faked codex with source image in Dresden 19a. 


          (2) a crudely polished leather base, with follicles clearly evident, or on what appears to be amate (fig-tree bark) or even coconut fiber (Figures 2, 3);



          Figure 2. Faked leather codex and source image (K594, photograph copyright Justin Kerr, used with permission).


          (3) little to no confidence of line, the “hand” being ill-practiced in calligraphy (Figure 3);



          Figure 3. Unpracticed handling of paint, illegible signs and crude leather base.

          (4) overbold and liberal use of polychromy (Figure 4; see also Figure 5, from the Peabody Museum at Yale University);


          Figure 4. Bright polychromy: source image to right, “Pellicer Vase,” Museo Regional de Antropología Carlos Pellicer Cámara (photograph to right: Stephen Houston). 


          Yale PM fake obverse.jpg

          Figure 5. Garish polychromy on the Yale Peabody Museum Codex (photograph by Michael Coe); note also the copying from Dresden 56b.

          (5) transparent copying from widely available sources, especially the Dresden Codex and sundry illustrations from general books.

          A few of these examples will suffice. One smuggles in a poorly interpreted vulture from a page of the Dresden Codex (Figure 1). The hammock and courtly figures on the so-called “Pellicer vase” from the Museo Regional de Antropología Carlos Pellicer Cámara, Villahermosa, Tabasco, transfer neatly to another “codex” (Figure 4; vase published in Covarrubias 1957), and a Late Classic image of a mythic figure from a polychrome vase excavated at Uaxactun Guatemala finds an inept copy on yet another leather codex (Figure 6). Mixing periods–—the mural dates to the late 300s, early 400s—the faker also quoted freely from the well-published Ratinlixul Vase, excavated in 1917 by Robert Burkitt near Chamá, Guatemala, and now in the University of Pennsylvania Museum (UPM No. NA 11701, Danien 1997:38, Fig. 1).

          What is abundantly evident is the sheer laziness or uninventive mentality of forgers. Sylvanus Morley’s The Ancient Maya (1946), first edition, was a particularly generous source for them, as it contained a handy list of Maya day glyphs (fig. 18), month signs (fig. 19), glyphs for time periods (fig. 22), Initial Series (fig. 25), and thorough coverage of the Maya calendar (pp. 265–295). The Ratinlixul Vase had its own line drawing too (pl. 88b). Of slightly earlier date was the useful, inexpensive, and widely available edition of Maya codices by the Villacortas in Guatemala (Villacorta and Villacorta 1933).



          Figure 6. Copy of images from Uaxactun and the Ratinlixul vase on a forged leather codex (photograph to lower left, copyright Justin Kerr, used with permission).

          A final example shows how blatant such copying can be (Figure 6). This codex lifts half of the center ballcourt marker from Copan Ballcourt BII (excavated by Gustav Strømsvik in the 1930s), as well as a frontal image from Palenque’s Temple of the Skull (upper left) and a smattering of full-figure glyphs from Copan Stela D (center left; see Stuart Temple of the Skull); Maudslay 1889–1902:pl. 48).



          Figure 6. Fake codex and, at center, image taken from Copan Ballcourt II, center marker (drawing by John Montgomery). 

          A few of these documents are in institutions (American Museum of Natural History, no. 30–9530, in a gift of c. 1901–1904, from the Duc de Loubat [Glass 1975:204]; Peabody Museum, Yale University [No. 137880]; Världskulturmuseet, Göteborg [Glass 1975:305]), but most are only known to us by way of unsolicited communications or, for one manuscript, via a glossy facsimile published in Guatemala (Benítez 2005; said to be from Chichicastenango, Guatemala, it even has a supposed radiocarbon date of “BP 200 + 28,” which, by odd arithmetic, the author pushes back to “1650 A.D.” [Benítez 2005:4–5]). Most fakes had two episodes of preparation, beyond the painting itself. Immersion in dirt or (we suspect) cow patties provided the right patina, and then a hurried cleaning gave some visibility for the dupe being invited to purchase the book.

          A striking element is that many share elaborate “origin” stories. As a random selection, these concern a now-deceased relative who had traveled in Mexico/Guatemala, etc., a stray find in a Maya town in Guatemala, caves, scuba-diving or, in an example seen by one of us (Houston) in Provo, Utah, an heir wishing to donate the manuscript to a worthy public institution. A few seem to have gone through the hands of the late Pablo Bush Romero, “Mexico’s distinguished diver, self-made scholar and restless millionaire-at-large” (Sports Illustrated 1964). The presence of others of far earlier date, as in that acquired by the Duc de Loubat, show multiple hands behind their manufacture: the temptation to fake such codices clearly had deep roots (Glass 1975:305–306; for the Duc, Loubat obituary). The Yale forgery is described on the museum website as: a “Maya codex purchased in Mexico City, 1905, from an old priest around the corner from the southeast corner of the Alameda. This codex was first shown in 1887; he then declined to sell it, but in 1905, having been so ill that both his legs were amputated, and not expecting to live longer, he offered to sell the codex (to a friend?) of his in Merida who was then a druggist. This codex was examined by Dr. Alfred Tozzer of Harvard University, who considered it a reproduction, partly because the…various day signs were not in the proper Maya order” (Yale codex).

          At this point, one of us (Coe) has seen over a dozen such codices. All are supremely unconvincing to the trained eye. The inept painting, ignorance of Maya coloration, slavish (yet scrambled) copying of well-known sources, anachronisms, inattention to decipherments, improvised, ad hoc “signs,” rough preparation and obvious attempts at artificial aging—all characterize these examples, without exception. It is unthinkable that any in this corpus of pictorial failure would pass muster, technical analysis or glyphic and iconographic exegesis.

          To understand what is not a fake, as in the Grolier Codex (Coe et al. 2015), we are well-advised to study what is a fake. This rogues’ gallery shows that compelling deceptions of ancient Maya books are easier to claim than to create.



          Benítez, Henry. 2005. Códice Chugüilá (1650 d.C.). Guatemala: Editorial Piedra Santa.

          Blom, Frans. 1935a. A Checklist of Falsified Maya Codices. Maya Research 2(3):251–252.

          ______. 1935b. The ‘Gomesta Manuscript’, A Falsification. Maya Research 2(3):233–248.

          ______. 1946. Forged Maya Codex. The Masterkey 20:18.

          Brainerd, George W. 1948. Another Falsified Maya Codex. The Mastery 22:17–18.

          Chappell, Duncan, and Kenneth Polk. 2009. Fakers and Forgers, Deception and Dishonesty: An Exploration of the Murky World of Art Fraud. Current Issues in Criminal Justice 20 (3):393–412 (pp. 1–20, online).

          Coe, Michael, Stephen Houston, Mary Miller, and Karl Taube. 2015. The Fourth Maya Codex. In Maya Archaeology 3, eds., Charles Golden, Stephen Houston, and Joel Skidmore, 116–167.San Francisco,: Precolumbia Mesoweb Press.

          Covarrubias, Miguel. 1957. Indian Art of Mexico and Central America. New York: Knopf.

          Danien, Elin. 1997. The Ritual on the Ratinlixul Vase: Pots and Politics in Highland Guatemala. Expedition 39(3):37–48. Danien 1997

          Eberl Markus, and Christian Prager. 2000. A Fake Maya BoneMexicon 22(1):5.

          Eberl, Markus, and Hanns Prem. 2011. Identifying a Forged Maya Manuscript in UNESCO’s World Digital Library. Ancient Mesoamerica 22(1):155–166.

          Gallenkamp, Charles, and Regina E. Johnson. 1985. Maya: Treasures of Ancient Civilization. New York: Harry N. Abrams.

          Glass, John B. 1975. A Catalog of Falsified Middle American Pictorial Manuscripts. In Handbook of Middle American Indians, Volume 14: Guide to Ethnohistorical Sources, Part 3, ed. Howard F. Cline (assoc. eds., Charles Gibson and H. B. Nicholson), 297–310. Austin: University of Texas Press.

          Godley, John R. 1967. Van Meegeren: A Case History. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons.

          Hanks William F. 1992. The Language of the Canek ManuscriptAncient Mesoamerica 3:269279.

          Holroyd, Charles. 1903. Michael Angelo Buonarroti. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons.

          Jones, Grant D. 1992. The Canek Manuscript in Ethnohistorical PerspectiveAncient Mesoamerica 3:243268.

          Lapatin, Kenneth D. S. 2000. Proof? The Case of the Getty Kouros. Source: Notes in the History of Art 20(1):43–53.

          Maudslay, Alfred P. 1889–1902. Biologia Centrali-Americana, or, Contributions to the Knowledge of the Fauna and Flora of Mexico and Central America, vols. 55–9, Archaeology. London: R. H. Porter and Dulau.

          Meyer, Karl E. 1973. The Plundered Past: Traffic in Art Treasures. New York: Athenaeum. 

          Morley, Sylvanus G. 1946. The Ancient Maya. Stanford: Stanford University Press.

          Villacorta, J. Antonio C., and Carlos A. Villacorta. 1933. Códices Mayas: Dresdensis— Peresianus—Tro-Cortesianus. Guatemala: Tipografía Nacional.

          Von Bothmer, Dietrich, and Joseph V. Noble. 1961. An Inquiry into the Forgery of the Etruscan Terracota Warriors in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Papers 11. New York.

          Wassén, S. Henry. 1942. A Forged Maya Codex on Parchment: A Warning. Etnologiska Studier 1213:293–304.



          ArcheoNet BE

          Orgel Sint-Pietersbandenkerk in Dikkele voorlopig beschermd

          Vlaams minister Geert Bourgeois heeft het Vereecken-orgel in de Sint-Pietersbandenkerk in Dikkele (Zwalm) voorlopig beschermd als monument. “Het classicistisch orgel is een mooi voorbeeld van traditionele ambachtelijke orgelbouw op het Vlaamse platteland tijdens de 19de eeuw,” aldus Bourgeois.

          Het orgel is van de hand van Petrus Joannes Vereecken (1803-1889) uit Gijzegem, een van de orgelmakers die vasthielden aan het ambachtelijke classicisme. Vereecken vervaardigde zelf ook het pijpwerk en ontwierp alle orgelkasten in zijn eigen atelier. Vanuit kunsthistorisch perspectief is zijn oeuvre erg interessant omdat het zich situeert in een periode waarin de orgelbouw – na een lange periode van stabiliteit – veranderde van classicisme naar romantiek.

          Die overgang was meer dan louter stilistisch: bij de overgang naar de internationale (Franse) symfonische romantiek ruilde men het ambachtelijke aspect in voor industriële principes van standaardisatie, prefabricage en specialisatie (bijvoorbeeld de uitbesteding van het pijpwerk). Als een van de laatste instrumenten uit zijn eerste stijlperiode, bevindt het relatief gaaf bewaarde orgel van Dikkele zich juist op dit kantelpunt van het oeuvre van Vereecken.

          Foto: Klaas Jaap van der Meijden (© Onroerend Erfgoed)

          BiblePlaces Blog

          My Favorite Book of the Year: Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus

          At a faculty roundtable last month, we went around and answered a series of questions for our students majoring in Biblical Studies. One question asked was, “What is the best book you’ve read this year?” My answer was Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus, by Lois Tverberg.

          Officially the book doesn’t release until next month, but that’s too late for Christmas. And I’ve learned that the author has some copies available now. I want to encourage you to consider buying one or more, from her directly, before it’s available at Amazon and other bookstores.Image result for Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus

          You get an idea for what the book is about from the subtitle: How a Jewish Perspective Can Transform Your Understanding. You can also get an idea from the table of contents and the free sample chapter. And the endorsements are stellar. Here’s what I wrote for the back of the book cover:

          Just what exactly did Jesus share with his disciples on the road to Emmaus? This excellent book unfolds so many valuable truths in the Scriptures that are often ignored or misunderstood. Lois Tverberg is a trustworthy guide whose insightful discoveries provide a delightful appetizer to some of the most exciting passages in the Old Testament. I'm recommending it to everyone I know.

          Let me break that down a bit.

          This book addresses many of my favorite subjects, including individualism vs. community, intertextuality, and the concept of a righteous king.

          This book highlights some of my favorite OT passages, bringing out the glory of Isaiah 53, Daniel 7, Zechariah 9, and 2 Samuel 7.

          This book is full of truths that are precious to me from my study of Jesus’s Bible (aka the Old Testament). I don’t think these truths should be radical, but it took me too long to learn them and I find my students are usually ignorant of them.

          This summer my family memorized Isaiah 11-12. If that strikes you as strange and you’re asking, why not something “practical” such as in the Book of James, then this book will definitely help you understand why I want my kids’ brains steeped in this glorious passage of Isaiah.

          Frankly, most of us Christians have done it all wrong, starting at the back of the book (in the New Testament) and wondering why certain things don’t make sense and why the Old Testament is mysterious in so many places. We need to start at the beginning, and I highly recommend Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus as an easy way to get you excited to do that yourself, with your family, or in your church or Bible study.

          You’ll be able to buy it in bookstores next month, but I would encourage you to consider buying it directly from Lois now because: (1) you can give them as presents; (2) you’ll be supporting the author directly, and she deserves the reward for her many years of labors on this!

          I’ll close with what I wrote to Lois after I finished reading the preview copy: “My prayer is that this book will reach many—for the good of their souls and the glory of our Savior!”

          Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

          The Khalili Research Centre Image Database

          The Khalili Research Centre Image Database
          The Khalili Research Centre Image Database contains just over 30,000 images that have been scanned of the slides used for teaching Islamic Art at the University of Oxford since the 1960s.
          The database includes slides from important collections including those of Olga Ford, Sylvia Matheson, and Antony Hutt, alongside slides and photographs taken by academics and researchers affiliated to the KRC, Ashmolean Museum, or Faculty of Oriental Studies.

          We continue to work on adding images to the database, and improving the metadata for records already within the archive, and we hope that it will prove a valuable resource to both students of Islamic Art and the public in general

          The Archaeology News Network

          Scientists pioneer new way to analyze ancient artwork

          Scientists from UCLA and the National Gallery of Art have used a combination of three advanced imaging techniques to produce a highly detailed analysis of a second century Egyptian painting. The original painting (left), along with images made using hyperspectral reflectance, luminescence  and X-ray fluorescence [Credit: National Gallery of Art (left); National Gallery of Art/UCLA]They are the first to use the specific...

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          AIA Fieldnotes

          Current Archeological Prospection Advances for Non-destructive Investigations of the Marksville Prehistoric Indian Site (16AV1), Louisiana

          Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
          Sponsored by National Park Service
          Event Type (you may select more than one): 
          Start Date: 
          Monday, May 21, 2018 - 8:00am to Friday, May 25, 2018 - 5:00pm

          The National Park Service’s 2018 workshop on archaeological prospection techniques entitled Current Archeological Prospection Advances for Non-destructive Investigations of the Marksville Prehistoric Indian Site (16AV1), Louisiana, will be held May 21--15, 2018, at the Marksville State Historic Site in Avoyelies Parish, Louisiana.  Lodging will be at the Paragon Casino Resort in Marksville, Louisiana.  The lectures will be at a meeting room in the Paragon Casino Resort.  The field exercises will take place at the Marksville Prehistoric Indian Site at the Marksville


          Steven De Vore
          Call for Papers: 

          ASOR Blog (American Schools of Oriental Research)

          Visitors from the Intermediate Bronze Age? Crescent Headed Figures in Negev Rock Art

          The Negev is filled with rock art from all periods. But a newly discovered type of figure suggests that visitors from outside the Levant [...]

          The post Visitors from the Intermediate Bronze Age? Crescent Headed Figures in Negev Rock Art appeared first on The ASOR Blog.

          The Archaeology News Network

          Genetics preserves traces of ancient resistance to Inca rule

          The Chachapoyas region was conquered by the Inca Empire in the late 15th century. Knowledge of the fate of the local population has been based largely on Inca oral histories, written down only decades later after the Spanish conquest. The Inca accounts claim that the native population was forcibly resettled out of Chachapoyas and dispersed across the Inca Empire. However, a new study in Scientific Reports, by an international team...

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          Kristina Killgrove (Forbes)

          Anglo-Saxon Graves Show Older Women Were Not Respected In Death

          Why were old women buried strangely in Anglo-Saxon England?

          Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

          17th-century ivory sundial compass is scanned using a 3D scanner and then reproduced using a 3D printer.

          17th-century ivory sundial compass is scanned using a 3D scanner and then reproduced using a 3D printer.

          Archaeological News on Tumblr

          How virtual reality is opening up some of the world's most inaccessible archaeological sites

          We often associate virtual reality (VR) with thrilling experiences we may never be able to have in...

          Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

          End of the Blog?

          Over the last week or so, I’ve been thinking a good bit about the future of this blog. I’ve been writing this blog for 10 or 11 years or something, and I’m starting to feel that it has strayed pretty far from its original intent. Or maybe it hasn’t. Maybe it is the context for the blog (and maybe blogging in general) has changed over the last decade.

          I know for certain that my position in the field has changed and in academia has changed, and, as a result, my priorities have changed.

          I also know that all projects should come to an end and, sometimes it is better to fade away rather than burn out.

          This is what I’m thinking:

          1. Internet Culture has Changed. Over the last year or so, I’ve had a few missteps in managing my online persona. Some of these are more visible than others for casual readers of this blog. For example, this summer, I responded a bit too assertively to an article critiquing Punk Archaeology and caused the author of the article genuine distress. It was not my intent and I am still bothered by both what I said (I was not generous) and how I said it (I was too casual and flippant).

          More recently, I was scolded by a couple trusted colleagues for responding a bit too puckishly to scholars on social media. In hindsight, I was clearly in the wrong and more than a bit tone deaf to both the medium and the particular conversation (and this isn’t the first time that I’ve been a bit off base). More than that, I responded in haste like I would in a casual conversation over beers rather than in a deliberate and thoughtful way. So not only were my comments hasty but they were unproductive as well. From the start I viewed social media as a kind of casual space designed for playful banter (something like the banter one has at the bar at an academic conference), but if we’ve learned anything from an armada of Russian bots, social media is much more than that. There is probably less space in it for my silly (and largely selfish) sense of humor today than there once was. People are doing serious work in social media and my fucking around is not helping.

          At the same time, I wonder whether there is less space today for a blog like this. I’ve always seen it as a platform for the informal exploration of ideas, for half-baked throughs, and for intellectual ephemera. But as many of my colleagues have demonstratedespecially lately – blogs should do more than just serve as a platform for my assorted ramblings or as a self-indulgent expression of my puerile personality. More to the point, I worry whether continuing to write this blog runs the risk of diluting the good work that other folks are doing in this media. Things done changed.

          2. Professional Persona. When I started this blog (approximately 2500 posts and a million words ago), I felt pretty marginal in academia. I was an Assistant Professor at a school on the edge of the frozen prairie. I worked on Cyprus and the Late Antique and Byzantine period. I was a specialist in material culture and archaeology in a history department. Even the archaeology that I did – intensive pedestrian survey – stood at the margins of conventional archaeological practice. I was relatively un-published and anything I wrote could be easily dismissed as the inconsequential thoughts of a junior faculty member at University of Southern North Dakota at Hoople. This gave me a good bit of cover and allowed me to cultivate a persona grounded in alternative practices whether punk archaeology or my overly enthusiastic embrace of blogging.

          While I hate to admit this, I am no longer at the margins of my profession. I’m certainly not at the center or even a central figure, but I can no long indulge my vox clamantis fantasy. I have too many conference papers, invited talks, articles and books, and various other academic gewgaws to be a genuinely marginal figure in my field. I’ve run my own project, I have tenure, and I even have two dogs. With my professional development, however, comes greater expectations, and, as I asserted in point (1), probably requires me to embrace a greater seriousness of purpose in my online persona. This really struck home when in a debate this summer a scholar pointed out to me in a twitter thread that my position and academic credentials give much greater platform to assert my views.

          It goes without saying that as a tenured, married, middle-class, white, male my very identity carries additional authority in public sphere. Even my scruffy beard and largely unkempt hair reinforces my academic credentials in an inescapably masculine way. My interest in stereotypical male things, from my editorializing on sport on my Friday Varia, to my fascinations with high-end stereo gear and fancy watches subtly (and unintentionally) assert my position as a male scholar.

          My position then as a mid-career male scholar with tenure means that, whether I intend it or not, people take the things I do seriously. Even ideas and projects tinged with a bit of intentional frivolity, like Punk Archaeology, have attracted serious academic attention (and this has been remarkably gratifying to me!). More importantly, by taking on the role of editor at North Dakota Quarterly and developing the profile of The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota, I’ve accepted responsibility as a steward of other people’s work. My frivolous behavior online and the half-baked ideas spewed forth to the world from this blog could reflect poorly on other people who have trusted me to promote and support their ideas.

          I guess all this is to say that I need to grow up or at least acknowledge that I have grown up and start to behave more like a profession and less like a failed graduate student or a former age-group swim coach (which is how I’ve always thought of myself).

          [As an aside, I’m increasingly anxious about the book I just had published on the Bakken. It was very much experimental in approach and content, but in today’s increasingly politicized culture (and extractive industries in North Dakota are nothing if not political) a book like this might be seen as poking the bear rather than a genuine academic exercise. While I’m not worried that the book will cause me discomfort, I do worry that it might cause other people discomfort from my colleagues (by association) to folks who work hard to represent the University of North Dakota in a positive light in the state. I don’t want to say that I regret having written so publicly on the Bakken, but it can’t shake the idea that there is a time and a place for everything.]

          3. The Food is Bad and the Portions are Tiny. Over the past couple of years, the number of page views on my blog have declined steadily from usually well over 100 a day to just over 80. On the one hand, maybe this does say that my ideas are genuinely marginal, but it probably suggests that they are increasingly banal and the blogosphere has more appealing options. The decline also reflects my reluctance to Tweet or Facebookle my daily posts out of concern that some half-baked thought upset or annoy someone.

          I know that the internet is not, strictly speaking, a zero sum game, but I wonder if people who are reading my blog are people who are not reading other much better blogs out there. A year or so ago (and I can’t find the post), I got to thinking about how to ramp down a project or transform it when it no longer is working. The decline in readership, the change in online culture (and readers’ expectations), and my changing professional status have made me really think that this blog has more or less run its course.

          That being said, I do like to write this blog and like to write in general, and I’m pretty sad at the thought of bringing it to an end, but maybe I’ll figure out something else to do that fills my morning and gives me a space to work out ideas in an informal voice that is less public, less frivolous, and less fraught.

          Archaeological News on Tumblr

          Ancient Tomb Full of 'Soup Bowls' & Food Vessels Discovered in China

          A 3,100-year-old tomb filled with bronze “soup bowls” and other food vessels covered in...

          Genetics preserves traces of ancient resistance to Inca rule

          The Chachapoyas region was conquered by the Inca Empire in the late 15th century. Knowledge of the...

          Compitum - publications

          A. Gonzales et M. T. Schettino (dir.), Les sons du pouvoir des autres


          Antonio Gonzales et Maria Teresa Schettino (dir.), Les sons du pouvoir des autres. Actes du troisième colloque SoPHiA, 27-28 mars 2014, Strasbourg, Besançon, 2017.

          Éditeur : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté
          Collection : Institut des sciences et techniques de l'Antiquité (ISTA)
          146 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-600-5
          19 €

          Ce volume s'inscrit dans le cadre des nouvelles pistes méthodologiques sur l'étude de l'altérité et se propose d'analyser les implications politiques et sociales des manifestations sonores. L'approche sonore appliquée à l'étude de la conception du pouvoir dépasse ici pour la première fois l'horizon gréco-romain pour s'ouvrir à d'autres civilisation de la Méditerranée antique où à des groupes sociaux soit minoritaires soit politiquement subordonnés. Cette perspective chronologique a permis de nuancer une idée reçue sur la place disproportionnée du bruit et du silence dans les civilisations de la Méditerranée et dans les sociétés dites barbares.


          Source : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté

          Martin Rundkvist (Aardvarchaeology)

          December Pieces Of My Mind #1


          Middle Byzantine tomb portal slab in Thessaloniki’s Museum of Byzantine Culture.

          • Cube sats are so tough that if their launch rocket blows up after lift-off and they fall to the ground, they usually still work.
          • Cancelled flight leads to unscheduled layover, which knocks me so far out of my habits that I take a bath instead of a shower. Must be almost 20 years since the last time.
          • Hotel rooms used to be so lonely. No more thanks to wifi and social media.
          • One of the Viking town Kaupang’s cemeteries is named Bikkjeholberget, “Bitch Hole Hill”.
          • I just found a Swedish example of the uncertainty of when to use “the” in English. Making the title of a much-read book by an archaeology professor read like something said by a Russian movie villain. Sorry, I mean, “Making title of mach-read book by archaeology prafessor read like something said by Rrraaassian movie villain.” In Saviet Rrrassia, you do not use word “the”. Word uses you!
          • Even when they look amazing inside, Byzantine churches look awful from outside. Naked crumbling brickwork, usually sitting in a pit.
          • Remember when a PC used to crash if you disconnected the keyboard?
          • LibreOffice’s word processor has a tool button to set the colour of text. Its default colour isn’t black. It’s dried blood, caput mortuum.
          • The question shouldn’t be “Is AI consciousness possible”, but “Are humans actually conscious or is it just what our brains think?”.
          • Reading Taylor’s scifi novel We Are Legion and enjoying it immensely. But then there’s this Paleolithic culture on another planet. And the first person described is a woman who’s busy butchering an animal. That a male brought her, explains Taylor. Using a flint knife made by her son. And suddenly this future Stone Age looks quite Victorian.
          • Another nibble! This one asked “Oh BTW, have you got a driver’s licence”?
          • The Sites & Monuments Register inadvertently documents the decline of grazing in Södermanland province. Loads of ancient cemeteries are described in detail during the 60s, and then in the 80s the re-surveyors just comment “Overgrown, couldn’t see shit”.
          • I have annoying Scanian ancestors. They use super few given names, so every time I think I’ve managed to link my genealogical tree up with somebody else’s it turns out to be different people with the same names. /-:
          • A month working at this archive has led me to the realisation that I don’t own enough cardigans.
          • When they cleared the ruin of Ärja parish’s Medieval church, they dumped the rubble on a Late Bronze Age cemetery nearby. :-0
          • Reached the point where my kid does the baking for the school bake sale without me having to do anything, even find a recipe.
          • The passing of a fad: you currently get two fidget spinners for the price of one on the Helsinki-Stockholm ferry.
          • A new book tells the story of the British 80s magazine The Face, calling it a “style magazine”. I am relieved to finally understand why I found the mag completely pointless.
          • This is a weird one. An Early Iron Age cemetery with the usual big flat round stone pavements — but one of them is built around a wellspring!
          • There’s a 4 km corridor of international water between the Swedish islands of Öland and Gotland.
          • The combination of darkness, a crowd and loud techno music really makes for a hellish environment.

          Thessaloniki’s waterfront. Not a monochrome shot.


          Archaeological News on Tumblr

          200-year-old Wheatsheaf Hotel ruins uncovered beneath Parramatta cottage

          Evidence of the existence of one of Australia’s oldest pubs, dating back over 200 years, has...

          The Archaeology News Network

          Dinosaur parasites trapped in 100-million-year-old amber tell blood-sucking story

          Fossilised ticks discovered trapped and preserved in amber show that these parasites sucked the blood of feathered dinosaurs almost 100 million years ago, according to a new article published in Nature Communications. Hard tick grasping a dinosaur feather preserved in 99 million-year-old Burmese amber. Modified from the open access  article published in Nature Communications: 'Ticks parasitised feathered dinosaurs as revealed...

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          Archaeological News on Tumblr

          Scientists pioneer new way to analyze ancient artwork

          Scientists from UCLA and the National Gallery of Art have used a combination of three advanced...

          The Archaeology News Network

          Fossil bones of human-sized penguin found on New Zealand beach

          Together with a team from New Zealand, Senckenberg scientist Dr. Gerald Mayr described a hitherto unknown fossil giant penguin species. The excavated bones indicate that the penguin stood over 1.7 meters tall in life and reached a body weight of approx. 100 kilograms. In their study, published today in the scientific journal Nature Communications, the researchers show that throughout geological history, “gigantism” was not a rare...

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          Dickinson College Commentaries

          Support BMCR!

          As any reader of DCC doubtless knows, Bryn Mawr Classical Review is the essential digital project in classics, arguably one of the most successful projects in the all the humanities disciplines in the history of the digital humanities. Most classicists cannot now imagine professional life without it–all the more remarkable because it runs on volunteer labor. I am passing on this email message from the good folks at BMCR, who have done so much for the fields of classics and archaeology, in hopes that you will support their efforts to upgrade their infrastructure. I know I will!


          Dear colleagues, readers and friends,

          The end of the year is nearly upon us, and we write to you with news of BMCR and also a request for aid.

          BMCR is now engaged in a complex process of renewal. We will share more information in due time, but the short of it is that our systems are a patchwork whose core was first constructed nearly two decades ago. Nothing in the world of computing or digital humanities has stood still, and we are now contracting to build ourselves a better platform, to make our own work more efficient and to enable us to serve our readers and authors as fully as possible into the future.

          The catch is that this work is expensive. What is more, as every one of you knows, BMCR has always been and remains committed to being open access, and relies nearly wholly on volunteer labor for every aspect of its operation. I need hardly point out that, if one gives away the product, one must live without a revenue stream.

          For its day to day operations, BMCR has long survived on a combination of in-kind infrastructural support from Bryn Mawr College and income from the sale of Bryn Mawr Commentaries. This has generally been sufficient for our limited operational expenses. The scale of expenditure for a new platform and the migration of our historical data are another thing altogether.

          We have embarked on a number of efforts to raise money for this process, and this will include—soon! —a direct appeal to you. We write today to ask you to assist us with an indirect and easy form of aid.

          BMCR’s parent, Bryn Mawr Commentaries, is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization. BMCR is thereby registered with both the Amazon Associates program and with Amazon Smile. This means that—with a tiny effort on your part—BMCR can receive a donation from Amazon every time you make a purchase. If you are in the US and using, you can do this in one of two ways:

          (1) Select BMCR as your charity of choice via Amazon Smile: If you follow this link and have not registered, you will have the opportunity to select a charity. Enter “Bryn Mawr Commentaries.” Henceforth, every time you arrive at and make a purchase, BMCR will receive a contribution based on the sale.

          If you have already selected a charity but want to switch to BMCR, you may do so via the options under “Your Account.” Simply look for the option, “Your AmazonSmile.”

          (2) If you do not wish to register a charity in this way, you may also use/bookmark the following link: This directs a donation to BMCR via the Amazon Associates program.

          Thank you very much for entertaining this appeal.

          We will write again soon to announce BMCR’s annual break for the holidays. In the meantime, best wishes for the holiday season.


          Camilla, Cliff, Jim and Rick


          The Archaeology News Network

          Fossil orphans reunited with their parents after half a billion years

          Everyone wants to be with their family for Christmas, but spare a thought for a group of orphan fossils that have been separated from their parents since the dawn of animal evolution, over half a billion years ago. Pseudooides [Credit: University of Bristol]For decades, paleontologists have puzzled over the microscopic fossils of Pseudooides, which are smaller than sand grains. The resemblance of the fossils to animal embryos...

          [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]

          Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

          Crowddreaming III: concorso di idee per la creazione di monumenti digitali


          Cercasi costruttori di monumenti digitali. Ma cosa vuol dire in pratica? I nuovi servizi in realtà aumentata consentono letteralmente di sovrapporre una dimensione digitale invisibile a quella visibile a occhio nudo nella quale siamo abituati a muoverci.

          Jim Davila (

          Hanukkah 2017

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          Pereginations of an ancient stone menorah-incised door

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          The Archaeology News Network

          Tasmanian tiger doomed long before humans came along

          The Tasmanian tiger was doomed long before humans began hunting the enigmatic marsupial, scientists said Tuesday, with DNA sequencing showing it was in poor genetic health for thousands of years before its extinction. Thylacine [Credit: Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Benjamin A. Sheppard]Scientists genetically mapped the animal—also known as a thylacine—using the genome of a pup preserved more than a century ago in a jar. The...

          [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]

          James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

          Mind The Gap: An Interview with Matthias Henze

          I am ever so grateful to Matthias Henze for allowing me the opportunity to interview him about his new book, Mind the Gap. Here are the questions that I posed to him, followed by his answers: JM: I saw an article in the Times of Israel about your book, the headline of which said that a […]

          Current Epigraphy

          Virtual Museum of Archaeological Computing

          Presentation of the Virtual Museum of Archaeological Computing

          Accademia dei Lincei (Rome) – Wednesday, 13th of December 2017

          The Virtual Museum of Archaeological Computing is a project of the CNR-ISMA and Accademia dei Lincei (Rome). It aims at retracing the development of a boundary discipline, which set its roots in the 1950s. A virtual tour, guided by specialists, will offer a survey on the history of applications and technological devices, within the framework of the main archaeological sectors involved in the process of data digitisation, including also focuses on Digital Epigraphy (see Projects section).


          South Arabian funerary stelae from the British Museum collection

          Presentation of the volume by A. Lombardi, with contributions by F. Betti
          (Arabia Antica. Archaeological studies, 11; Roma, L’ERMA di Bretschneider, 2016)

          14th of December 2017 – h. 15
          Università degli Studi di Milano – Palazzo Greppi, Sala Napoleonica – Via S. Antonio, 1


          Jim Davila (

          Maccabean-era candle holder excavated by porcupine

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          Thibaud Fournet et al. (Balneorient)

          The Southern Bathhouse of Antiochia Hippos

          By Arleta Kowalewska

          The ancient city of Antiochia Hippos, founded upon the crest of Mount Sussita, two kilometers east of the Sea of Galilee, was one of the cities of the Decapolis. As from year 2000, this Israeli national park has been excavated for a month every summer. The ongoing Hippos Excavation Project (from 2012 directed by Michael Eisenberg), of the Zinman Institute of Archaeology, University of Haifa, Israel, has unearthed a substantial part of the city center. For over ten seasons, one of the investigated areas of the site has been the Southern Bathhouse.

          Aerial view of the southern slopes of Mount Sussita, with the Southern Bathhouse, and the forum visible above it (© Hippos Excavation Project).

          The bathhouse was identified in 2005, during excavations of the fortifications of the southern wall of the city, consequently called the Southern Bathhouse. During the last two excavation seasons (2016 and 2017) the critical mass of data has been reached in order to reconstruct the plan of the bathhouse. The first publication in Hebrew (below) is about to be followed by a more detailed English version, in the meantime presented on the ASOR 2017 Meeting.

          Hypocaust excavated in hall V (© Hippos Excavation Project).

          The Southern Bathhouse is one of the three bathing complexes discovered in Antiochia Hippos. It was a middle-sized facility (estimated to 1050 m2), craftily constructed and luxurious, in many ways conventional, but in others unique. One of its most peculiar characteristics is the asymmetric plan, a result of adaptation of previously standing constructions and spatial constrain. As to the construction materials and techniques, the same ways as in other bathhouses of the Decapolis can be identified (basalt foundations, limestone ashlar walls and vaults, slab-made tubuli etc.).

          The Southern Bathhouse functioned between the 2nd and the beginning of the 4th cent. AD, so it is one of the few bathhouses of the region that are not used into the Byzantine period.

          Plan of the area with excavated halls of the bathhouse indicated (© Hippos Excavation Project).


          Compitum - publications

          Cinquantenaire de la SoPHAU 1966-2016. Regards croisés sur l’histoire ancienne en France


          Cinquantenaire de la SoPHAU 1966-2016. Regards croisés sur l'histoire ancienne en France, Besançon, 2017.

          Éditeur : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté
          Collection : Collection : Institut des sciences et techniques de l'Antiquité (ISTA)
          268 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-588-6

          La Société des Professeurs d'Histoire Ancienne de l'Université (SoPHAU), créée en 1966, regroupe des enseignants-chercheurs et des chercheurs spécialistes de l'Histoire de l'Antiquité, appartenant à une université ou à un organisme français de recherche.
          Fondée en 1966, la Société des Professeurs d'Histoire Ancienne de l'Université a pour objets la promotion de l'histoire ancienne et l'établissement de contacts entre professeurs et avec des associations étrangères dotées des mêmes buts. Ce volume présente les actes du congrès de son cinquantenaire tenu les 17 et 18 juin derniers à la Sorbonne. Vingt-et-une contributions présentent l'histoire de la SoPHAU, son action en faveur de la recherche et l'enseignement de l'histoire ancienne, des bilans historiographiques (Grèce, Rome, Proche-Orient, publications), des témoignages de collègues européens et des enquêtes sur la situation et les actions actuelles et les projets d'avenir.

          Lire la suite...

          Jim Davila (

          Reprising an ancient menorah sketch

          <img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

          Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

          VI edizione del Salone Biennale dell’Arte e del Restauro di Firenze


          Il Salone Biennale dell’Arte e del Restauro di Firenze anche per questa nuova edizione si conferma non soltanto come una grande vetrina dedicata alle ditte e agli operatori del settore, ma come una vera e propria occasione per il mondo del restauro per condividere esperienze e know-how, di interagire e valorizzare best practices applicate alla tutela, alla conservazione e alla valorizzazione dell’arte e della cultura.

          Al via la quarta edizione del Premio Friends of Florence - Salone dell’Arte e del Restauro di Firenze 2018


          La Fondazione non profit Friends of Florence, in collaborazione con l’Associazione non profit Istur-CHT, segreteria organizzativa del Salone dell’Arte e del Restauro di Firenze, presenta la quarta edizione del Premio Friends of Florence, a favore di interventi di restauro, tutela e conservazione di beni culturali che si trovano nelle città di Firenze promossi e curati da ditte di restauro specializzate.

          Bryn Mawr Classical Review

          2017.12.25: Livestock for Sale: Animal Husbandry in a Roman Frontier Zone: The Case Study of the 'Civitas Batavorum'. Amsterdam Archaeological Studies, 24

          Review of Maaike Groot, Livestock for Sale: Animal Husbandry in a Roman Frontier Zone: The Case Study of the 'Civitas Batavorum'. Amsterdam Archaeological Studies, 24. Amsterdam: 2016. Pp. vii, 254. $124.00. ISBN 9789462980808.

          2017.12.24: African Americans and the Classics: Antiquity, Abolition and Activism. Library of classical studies, 12

          Review of Margaret Malamud, African Americans and the Classics: Antiquity, Abolition and Activism. Library of classical studies, 12. London: 2016. Pp. xiii, 290. $99.00. ISBN 9781784534950.

          2017.12.23: Performance, Memory, and Processions in Ancient Rome: The 'pompa circensis' from the Late Republic to Late Antiquity

          Review of Jacob A. Latham, Performance, Memory, and Processions in Ancient Rome: The 'pompa circensis' from the Late Republic to Late Antiquity. New York: 2016. Pp. xxii, 345. $120.00. ISBN 9781107130715.

          José María Ciordia (Pompilo: diario esporádico de un profesor de griego)

          A quien corresponda

          Pido a las personas e instituciones que tengan poder para ello que hagan suya esta causa: proponer formalmente como candidata al Premio Princesa de Asturias de Comunicación y Humanidades a la colección editorial Biblioteca Clásica Gredos, en la persona de sus directores el helenista Carlos García Gual y los latinistas José Javier Iso y José Luis Moralejo. Aquí el catálogo de la colección en PDF.

          Se trata de una empresa hercúlea que ha conseguido lo que nunca se pudo antes: dos o tres generaciones enteras de filólogos clásicos españoles se han acordado para traducir al español en cuarenta años casi toda la literatura y la ciencia grecorromanas llegadas hasta nuestros días, para provecho también de filólogos clásicos, pero principalmente —y este es seguramente el mayor de sus méritos— de todos los que no lo son: historiadores (Tácito), politólogos (Tucídides), matemáticos (Euclides), biólogos (Aristóteles), psicólogos (Teofrasto), ingenieros (Arquímedes), físicos (Arato), filósofos (Plotino), geólogos (Plinio), astrónomos (Eratóstenes), antropólogos (Heródoto)… Parafraseando a Horacio (Odas III 30.1), juntos los traductores volvieron a poner en pie un monumentum aere perennius que, como un edificio descuidado, con el tiempo amenazaba ruina.


          Tratándose de una labor de traducción, lo mismo podría proponerse a la Biblioteca Clásica Gredos y al conjunto de sus traductores al Premio Princesa de Asturias de las Letras. Creo que nunca se ha dado a un colectivo, y desde luego nunca a un colectivo de adoradores de las letras, como somos los filólogos en todas nuestras variantes. Πρόσω!

          Compitum - publications

          A. Queyrel Bottineau et M.-R. Guelfucci (dir.), Conseillers et ambassadeurs dans l’Antiquité


          Anne Queyrel Bottineau et Marie-Rose Guelfucci (dir.), Conseillers et ambassadeurs dans l'Antiquité, Besançon, 2017.

          Éditeur : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté
          Collection : Dialogues d'Histoire Ancienne, supplément 17
          872 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-599-2
          49 €

          Personnages complexes aux rôles occulte ou officiel, conseillers et ambassadeurs font l'objet des actes de deux rencontres internationales publiées dans cet ouvrage. Explorant le jeu des personnalités et la relation d'échange qui les révèle autant que leurs interlocuteurs, l'enquête est conduite de l'époque homérique à la fin de l'Antiquité dans une approche pluridisciplinaire d'histoire des mentalités. Elle analyse leurs compétences, leur capacité à bien parler, leur connaissance de l'autre, leur image et leur forme de pouvoir, liée à leur position d'intermédiaires, spécialistes en communication, placés au cœur des secteurs humains les plus variés.


          Source : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté

          H. Bru, G. Labarre et G. Tirologos (dir.), Espaces et territoires des colonies romaines d'Orient


          Hadrien Bru, Guy Labarre et Georges Tirologos (dir.), Espaces et territoires des colonies romaines d'Orient, Besançon, 2016.

          Éditeur : Presses Universitaires de Franche-Comté
          Collection : Institut des sciences et techniques de l'Antiquité (ISTA)
          198 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-551-0
          22 €

          Les colonies romaines d'Orient furent des cités qui incarnèrent la quintessence de l'histoire des sociétés gréco-romaines d'un point de vue culturel, institutionnel, spatial, économique et militaire. Cet ouvrage se propose d'aborder leurs espaces et leurs territoires, en Asie Mineure et en Grèce du Nord. En complément d'une approche théorique liée aux écrits des agrimensores romains (ou gromatici), mais également à l'onomastique, les études proposées s'intéressent particulièrement à la Pisidie (autour d'Antioche de Pisidie) et à la Macédoine (autour des cités de Philippes et de Dion).

          Lire la suite...

          M. Crété (dir.), Discours et systèmes de représentation : modèles et transferts de ...


          Moïra Crété (dir.), Discours et systèmes de représentation : modèles et transferts de l'écrit dans l'Empire romain, Besançon, 2016.

          Éditeur :
          Collection : Institut des sciences et techniques de l'Antiquité (ISTA)
          342 pages
          ISBN : 978-2-84867-558-9
          27 €

          Réunissant historiens et épigraphistes, littéraires, hellénistes et latinistes, deux colloques tenus à l'université de Nice Sophia Antipolis en septembre 2009 et en décembre 2010 ont permis d'explorer les questions de production, de transmission, de diffusion et de réception de l'écrit dans le monde romain. Les questions d'intertextualité, les rapports pouvant exister entre l'oral et l'écrit, les modalités d'exposition et de publication de cet écrit, ses différentes formes ainsi que les images pouvant lui être associées ont été successivement abordés. Le présent volume rassemble les communications présentées lors de ces rencontres.

          Lire la suite...

          Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

          Postdoctoral Fellowships “Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices” (Forum Transregionale Studien, Berlin)

          The Berlin-based Forum Transregionale Studien invites scholars to apply for up to six postdoctoral fellowships within the framework of the research program Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices. Kunstgeschichte und Ästhetische Praktiken for the academic year 2018/19. Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices is a research and fellowship program which questions and transcends traditional disciplinary boundaries of … Continue reading "Postdoctoral Fellowships “Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices” (Forum Transregionale Studien, Berlin)"

          Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

          Fluffy Thinking on Metal Detecting: The Legacy of the PAS

          In response to the article 'Night hawkers (sic) defile (sic) Cirencester's Roman amphitheatre' one Graham Burgess naively following the official line  replies
          True. But don't decry all detectorists. Recent report from PAS shows that 98% of reported finds were from them. RAMs need better protection and public education to report nighthawk desecration
          I am not sure what kind of 'protection' he wants to give ancient monuments and how you can 'report' what you cannot see (because they go out at night Mr Burgess, when it is dark).  There is however the problem of fluffy thinking:
          What do you mean "98%" Mr Burgess? 98% of what, precisely? How many finds dug up by artefact hunters simply disappear into their ephemeral collections *without record*? This is a process in which, legal or not,  *all* detectorists are involved
          Also, somewhet disturbng is the use of teh verb 'defle' in the original text, what does it mean here? And of course a "hawker" is somebody who sells something. While illicit artefact hunting may be done for profit, the term usually used is "nighthawks". Let us stick to one terminology otherwise we get in a muddle.

          Smokescreen Challenged

          Antiquities trade lobbyist Peter Tompa from his '@Aurelius 16 11 80' account poses a  loaded question, Peter Tompa posing as a one-man cultural property (recte: antiquities trade) lobbying organization laughably called Global (sic) Heritage alliance ' answers it.... fortunately on the other side of the fence are people who - unlike most collectors it seems - can use what they have in their heads:

          In fact, if you took away about six people, the entire US pro-no-questions-asked antiquities trade lobby in the form of multiple pop-up mouthy 'heritage organizations' would just collapse.

          For who the GHA purports to be, see here. \

          Archaeology Magazine

          Windmill Doodle Found on Walls of Newton’s English Manor

          England Newton graffitiLINCOLNSHIRE, ENGLAND—Live Science reports that conservator Chris Pickup of Nottingham Trent University discovered a doodle on the wall of Woolsthorpe Manor, Sir Isaac Newton’s childhood home. Pickup examined stone walls in the manor with a photographic technique called reflectance transformation imaging, which captured the faded outlines of an image of a windmill. As a boy, Newton may have drawn the windmill after observing one that had been built near the manor, Pickup says. Newton was born at the manor in 1642, and returned there from the University of Cambridge in 1665 during an outbreak of plague. He is known to have sketched and kept notes on the walls of his rooms as he experimented with splitting white light with prisms, and while developing the laws of motion and theory of universal gravitation. His friend William Stukeley wrote that Newton’s home was “full of drawings, which he [Newton] had made with charcoal. There were birds, beasts, men, ships, plants, mathematical figures, circles & triangles.” To read about excavations at the home of the English scientist Edward Jenner, the inventor of the smallpox vaccine, go to "The Scientist's Garden."

          Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

          Relics of 800-year-old ship found under water

          via The International News, 09 December 2017: Over 17,000 copper coins and the remains of 2,600 animal and plant species have also been found. Source: Relics of 800-year-old ship found under water

          Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

          Ahmad Al Mahdi Destroyed Heritage, Sentenced in Court

          The destruction of Cultural Heritage is a War Crime! Meet Ahmad Al Mahdi, the first person convicted of the war crime of having deliberately destroyed Cultural Heritage. Learn the story. (UNESCO).

          Archaeology Magazine

          Early Nineteenth-Century Pub Uncovered in Australia

          SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA—Traces of one of Australia’s first pubs have been uncovered in Parramatta, now a suburb west of Sydney, by a team of researchers led by archaeologist Ted Higginbotham. According to an ABC News report, the pub, known as the Wheatsheaf Hotel, was built in 1801. The excavation team also found the remains of a wheelwright’s workshop, where carts and wagons were made and fixed, which had been added to an early nineteenth-century convict hut. The hut was demolished for a brick cottage in the 1820s, and the brick cottage was taken down in the 1950s. A well, a baker’s oven, dinner plates, toys, and bottles were also recovered. “The baker’s oven, the wheelwright’s workshop, the later brick cottage could all be matched with the known historical occupants of the site,” Higginbotham explained. The archaeological site has been preserved within a new apartment complex. For more on the archaeology of Australia's colonial period, go to “Final Resting Place of an Outlaw.”

          12,000-Year-Old Fish Hooks Unearthed in Indonesia

          Alor fish hooksCANBERRA, AUSTRALIA—According to a report in The International Business Times, five fishhooks made of sea snail shell have been found in a 12,000-year-old burial on Indonesia’s Alor Island. The hooks—one in the shape of a “J,” and four crescent-shaped—had been placed around the chin and jaw of the deceased, who is thought to have been a woman. Sue O’Connor of the Australian National University explained that the hooks are the oldest known to have been found in a burial, and must have been deemed to be essential for survival in the afterlife. She also notes it had been previously thought that most fishing on the islands at the time had been carried out by men. Older fishhooks have been elsewhere in the world, but they were not associated with burial rites. To read about a pair of 23,000-year-old fishhooks found in Japan, go to “Japan's Early Anglers.”

          Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

          Skeletons from possible ancient city exposed by riverbank erosion

          via Coconuts Yangon, 08 December 2017 Skeletons, urns containing pieces of bones, and the remains of a building were unearthed when a river carried away a chunk of a riverbank on Tuesday. Source: Skeletons from possible ancient city exposed by riverbank erosion | Coconuts Yangon

          Archaeology Magazine

          Two New Kingdom Tombs Opened in Luxor

          Luxor two tombsLUXOR, EGYPT—Ahram Online reports that two tombs dating to the New Kingdom period have been opened in the Draa Abul-Naglaa necropolis. The tombs were discovered in the 1990s by German archaeologist Frederica Kampp. One of the tombs contained fragments of wooden masks, including one that had been part of a coffin, and one that had been gilded. Four wooden chair legs, and the lower part of a coffin decorated with a scene of the goddess Isis were also found. The second tomb contained a mummy. It may have belonged to Djehuty Mes, whose name is inscribed at the entrance to a long hall, where the cartouche of King Thutmose I is inscribed on the ceiling. The names of a scribe, Maati, and his wife, Mehi, were also found on half of the 100 funerary cones in the tomb. A scene of a seated man offering food to four oxen, and five people making funerary furniture, adorns a pillar in the tomb, which also contained painted wooden masks, more than 400 statues made of clay, wood, and faience, and a small box shaped like a coffin that may have been used to store an Ushabti figurine. To read more about archaeology in Egypt, go to “In the Time of the Rosetta Stone.”

          Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

          Still no decision on hotels in Bagan zone

          via Myanmar Times, 08 December 2017: The government is yet to decide on what to do with the hotels in Bagan heritage zone, even as the UNESCO has been suggesting their relocation since 2013. Source: Still no decision on hotels in Bagan zone

          AIA Fieldnotes

          Tomb Robbery in Ancient Egypt by Kate Liszla, Ph.D.

          Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
          Sponsored by Robert and Frances Fullerton Museum @ CSU, San Bernardino & AIA Riverside Society
          Event Type (you may select more than one): 
          Start Date: 
          Monday, December 18, 2017 - 7:00pm

          Ancient Egyptians believed that their name, their body, and their memory needed to be preserved to ensure life after death.  So that their memory would persevere for the rest of eternity, they were frequently buried in large visible tombs with the often-luxurious objects that they needed in the afterlife.  These wealth-filled tombs acted like a beacon of opportunity for criminals.  Learn how various tombs were broken into in antiquity, how the Egyptian designed their tombs in an attempt to ward off tomb robbers, and how the tomb robbers were tried and punished for their crimes


          AIA Society: 
          Craig Lesh
          Call for Papers: 

          December 11, 2017

          José María Ciordia (Pompilo: diario esporádico de un profesor de griego)

          Bacca laureatus

          La etimología es un placer sin fondo: llevas 40 años estudiando latín o griego y de repente un día te sale al paso una etimología obvia en la que no habías caído. No por difícil, que generalmente no lo son, sino porque son tantas… miles sin exagerar un ápice (del latín apex ‘punta’, sin ir más lejos). Pues bien, esta es obvia y una delicia. Todo instituto debería tener plantado en su jardín un ejemplar de Laurus nobilis —de laurel, vamos, de la familia de las laureáceas de toda la vida—. Porque la corona de laurel era símbolo de victoria para los griegos —deportiva, literaria o militar— desde el día en que Apolo tocó a Dafne y esta se convirtió en árbol de laurel por una venganza de Eros:

          tu ducibus Latiis aderis, cum laeta Triumphum
          vox canet et visent longas Capitolia pompas;
          postibus Augustis eadem fidissima custos
          ante fores stabis mediamque tuebere quercum,
          utque meum intonsis caput est iuvenale capillis,
          tu quoque perpetuos semper gere frondis honores!

          Tú acompañarás a los caudillos del Lacio, cuando la voz jubilosa
          grite triunfo y el Capitolio presencie grandes cortejos.
          Guardián fidelísimo, permanecerás ante la puerta, en el umbral de Augusto,
          y protegerás la corona de hojas de roble que está en su centro;
          y lo mismo que mi cabeza es juvenil por los cabellos sin cortar,
          tú llevarás siempre como adorno hojas perennes.

          Ovidio, Metamorfosis I 560-565.
          Trad. José Carlos Fernández y Josefa Cantó

          De hecho a la puerta de mi aula crece un pequeño laurel, que alguien plantó sin saber qué oportuno era su gesto. Y la chispa etimológica saltó cuando, pensando en él, me di cuenta de que laureatus es el origen del término francés baccalauréat ‘bachiller’; y que bacca (más correctamente baca) es la palabra latina que significa ‘baya, fruto pequeño’. Así que el latín bacca laureatus significa ‘coronado de laurel con fruto’. El fruto debía suponer un honor añadido, como deja claro el adjetivo español «fructífero», que se dice del vegetal que cumple la que parece que es su función primera: dar fruto, como da fruto un estudiante que ha aprendido y sabe.

          Corona de laurel hecha en oro con bayas, probablemente de Chipre del siglo IV o III a. C.

          Corona de laurel con fruto, hecha en oro, probablemente de Chipre (siglos IV o III a. C.). Foto: Andreas Praefcke, en Wikipedia Commons. Licencia: dominio público.

          Me toca explicárselo a los alumnos, que a buen seguro pasarán ahora junto al laurecillo, y lo mirarán, con el poco más de respeto con que se mira a cuanto tiene tras de sí una historia, más si esta es mitológica y tiene su punto misterioso. Y explicárselo también a los compañeros de otras disciplinas, que de vez en cuando se embelesan con estas perlas de sabiduría que les soltamos los de lenguas, los que parece que vivimos del aire, el sol, las nubes, el olor de tu piel, el modo callado en que tu cuerpo se detiene y reanuda luego el paso vuelto casi ola… Y también podemos luego incorporar a la ceremonia de graduación de final de curso una corona hecha con dos ramitas de este laurel del jardín nuestro, para que pase de cabeza a cabeza y de foto a foto. Pero, ¿le dolerá? ¡Pobre!

          Penn Museum Blog

          Levi Levering’s Headdress: Blurring Borders and Bridging Cultures

          The feather headdress labeled 38-2-1 in the Penn Museum Collection is richly colored and composed of many types of materials. It consists of a felt cap with a leather forehead band covered with a panel of vivid loomed beadwork (in orange, blue, yellow, and white tipi shapes) and two beaded rosettes (blue, yellow, white, and red) on either end of the band. Hanging from each side are ear pendants made of buckskin with metal beads attached, and dyed downy feathers and long ribbons trail from the headdress. Extending from the top of the band are felt cylinders (faded perhaps due to light exposure?), red and yellow down feathers, and long turkey feathers topped off with more green and pink down feathers.

          Feather headdress, object # 38-2-1, Penn Museum, held by Academic Engagement Coordinator Stephanie Mach. Photo by Margaret Bruchac.

          Beyond its vivid hues, the headdress includes both modern (brightly dyed feathers and glass beads) and traditional (leather ear pendants and turkey feathers) elements. The catalogue card creates more questions than it does answers, with a cryptic mention of the “Order of Red Men” and references to an “Indian princess” and “Levi Levering” whose alias is “Chief White Horn.” Horace Tenbrook Dumont, Jr., who sold this headdress to the Penn Museum, wrote:

          “I have been for several years, the proud owner of an authentic American Indian headdress. It was made by an Indian princess and presented to me by a Omaha Indian chieftain. It is, I imagine, rather valuable. As I have no way of taking care of it, it merely stands in an obscure corner and collects dust.”[1]

          The “chieftain” was Levi Levering, from the Omaha tribe in Nebraska. He bridges White and traditional Native cultures, just as the headdress itself is an embodiment of the complex relationship between these two different cultural groups. By delving into the history behind the headdress and its donor, one uncovers unexpected facets of shifting American identities. The headdress and Levering’s story evoke the impact of White culture on Native Americans and the acculturation that occurred, as reflected in cultural artifacts, religion, clothing, education, and politics.

          Details of rosettes with tin cones. Photo by Margaret Bruchac.

          Born in the latter half of the 19th century on an Omaha reservation, Levi Levering was surrounded by White Euro-American culture. At just age seven, he attended the reservation’s government school and went on to attend a Presbyterian mission school for three years, Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania for nine years, and, finally, Bellevue University in Nebraska for another three years.[2] At Carlisle, Levering experienced life in an Indian boarding school that forcibly immersed Native youth in Euro-American cultures, with the goal of producing alumni who might eventually became key leaders in “handling the Indians’ business.”[3] Its self-declared purpose was to “train the Indian youth of both sexes to take upon themselves the duties of citizenship” and to make sure that its graduates “are successfully competing with whites, away from the reservation, in the trades and professions.”[4] Native religious expression was not allowed; the school was Christian and students were required to attend church. Carlisle, like all of the Indian boarding schools, was expressly designed to acculturate Native Americans to White culture.

          Levi Levering was apparently a model student. Carlisle kept comprehensive records on him, from his original admittance documents to newspaper clippings regarding his achievements later in his life.[5] He maintained close contact with the school following his graduation, attending commencements and eventually sending his children there. His first occupation (as he reported to the school) was as an “Indian Trader.” Later he became a teacher, first at a government school in Fort Peck, Montana, and then at an Indian school in Fort Hall, Idaho.[6] It seems that Levering was a supporter of such Indian schools, but what was his perspective on keeping his culture alive in an increasingly White country? In one report to Carlisle, he wrote:

          “No Carlisle graduate can do [more] to betterment his people, unless, he first help himself, what he can do, then he is helping his people. What I have done for myself and family, is I feel that I help my people; it takes talent, education, and force of character to lift the Indian & help them.”[7]

          Levering apparently functioned as a liaison between two very different cultures: Native and White American. He was a dedicated Presbyterian, a member of the local YMCA, and he became the first Native American commissioner and representative of the Omaha Presbytery to the Presbyterian Church General Assembly in 1911.[8]

          (left to right) Levi Levering (Chief White Horn) with Don Schultze, George Howard (Jorge Essenay-Go-Sho-No), C.V. Davis, and Sam Early (Chief Blow Snake) at the Indian Garage on Upper Broad Street, Philadelphia, c. 1929. Photo by Don Schultz.

          For church and school events, he dressed in a formal suit. But he also maintained a performative identity, as “Chief White Horn.” This appears to have been a self-claimed title, rather than a marker of traditional chieftainship. This expression of his Native identity is showcased through images of Levering dressed in traditional regalia, wearing another feather headdress that is different from the one held in the Penn Museum’s collections. While living in Philadelphia, Levering joined the “Indian Social Club,” and participated in events with Penn Professor Frank Speck. In a photograph taken around 1929, Levering and two other Native Americans (George Howard and Sam Early) don feather headdresses and traditional garments, and pose with linked hands at a party for their White friend, Don Schultze, who was leaving his job at the New Jersey AAA Auto Club.[9] This multicultural photo is an interesting representation of cultural mixing.

          Levering also wore Native regalia for the annual Powhatan Confederacy Thanksgiving Ceremony, held by the Nanticoke nation at the Delaware River.[10] In a 1932 news article by Ta-De-Win for The Christian Science Monitor, Levering is referred to as Chief White Horn and is photographed in traditional regalia alongside another Native man, Wah-Ge (Frankin Fields). Ta-De-Win reported:

          “Dominating the group was the visitor’s Omaha friend, Chief White Horn. . . he had leased his farm lands to whites and had come to Philadelphia where he obtained the position of night watchman in the zoo. The long, dark hours do not drag for him, for in his rounds, he sings his Omaha songs to the bears, ‘and do you know,’ he remarked, ‘that they actually sit up and listen.'”

          In this article, again, Levering is portrayed in a multicultural light, playing a part in traditional ceremonies while occupying a “modern” role in society.

          Though Levering largely integrated himself into modern White culture, his activities often displayed an engagement with and commitment to his Indigenous culture. As a successful liaison, he used his positive standing with non-Native populations to benefit his own people. For example, as a Native American rights activist, he successfully lobbied Congress for tribal members’ rights to their native lands in 1920.[11]

          Levering’s story is embodied by this headdress, which mixes traditional, modern, and pan-Indian elements. As Levi Levering, or as his alias, Chief White Horn, he occupied a sort of “in-between” space, straddling cultures and bringing them together. Yet, this created an interesting paradox. Although he fought to conserve Native culture by participating in traditional rituals and protecting Native lands, he also submitted to acculturation in his devotion to the Presbyterian church and support of Indian schools started by White men. Because of this, it is difficult to pinpoint where Levering really stood and whether his role really benefited the Native community.

          Inside view of Levi Levering’s headdress. Photo by Margaret Bruchac.

          Similarly, this headdress seems to occupy an in-between space. In general form, it is similar to Western Plains eagle feather headdresses, but the use of turkey feathers and garish colors (including brightly colored feathers inside the cap) makes it appear more like costume than regalia. As a simultaneously modern and traditional piece, it transcends clear-cut cultural borders. There are still many questions. Was this headdress potentially associated with the Improved Order of Red Men, a white fraternal organization that infamously appropriated Native culture as costume? Was the headdress modified from its original form by adding the brightly colored feathers? Did Levering ever actually wear this headdress? Lastly, who made it, and was she, as the card suggests, an “Indian princess?” Regardless of whether these questions are ever answered, this headdress acquired some kind of brightly colored story, as it passed through many sets of hands, representing a changed but still surviving Native American culture.

          This object analysis was conducted for the Fall 2017 University of Pennsylvania course “Anthropology of Museums.” Students are examining Native American objects in the American Section of the Penn Museum by combining material analysis (elements, construction, design, condition, etc.) with documentation (texts, photographs, ethnographic data, etc.). Since some objects have minimal provenance data, we seek out similar materials, consult research articles and archives, and consider non-material evidence (oral traditions, ecosystems, museum memories, etc.) that might illuminate these objects. This research is designed to expand our understandings of object lives, using insights and information gathered from inside and outside of the Museum.

          Sources Cited:

          [1] Letter from Horace T. Dumont to Horace Jayne, November 27, 1937, in Office of the Director Alphabetical Correspondence 1929-1940, Penn Museum Archives.
          [2] Levi Levering Student File, Carlisle Indian School Digital Resource Center, RG 75, Series 1327, box 133, folder 5245, National Archives and Records Administration.
          [3] Ibid.
          [4] Catalogue, United States Indian School, Carlisle, Pennsylvania, 1912 (Carlisle: Carlisle Indian Press, 1912), 10.
          [5] Levi Levering Student File.
          [6] The Indian’s Friend, Volumes 22-23. (Philadelphia: National Indian Association and Women’s National Indian Association, 1909), 8.
          [7] Reply to United States Indian Service, January 21, 1907, Levi Levering Student File.
          [8] The Indian’s Friend, Volumes 22-23, 8.
          [9] “Stories behind Pictures” Email October 28, 1998 re: Don Schultze photograph, private collection.
          [10] Ta-de-win, “Chief White Horn Welcomed to Fete of Nonticoke Tribe,” The Christian Science Monitor, November 25, 1932.
          [11] R. Moring and A. Skelton, “Meet the Leverings: Levering Family Timeline.”

          Note: for additional posts on feather headdresses in the Penn Museum collections, see:
          • Margaret Bruchac, “Considering the Feather Headdress,” in Beyond the Gallery Walls, Penn Museum Blog, April 18, 2016.
          • Danielle Tiger, “Investigating the Origins of a Turkey Feather Headdress,” in Beyond the Gallery Walls, Penn Museum Blog, April 18, 2016.

          For an overview of the 2017 object studies in the Anthropology of Museums class, see:
          • Margaret Bruchac. “Object Matters: Considering Materiality, Meaning, and Memory” in Beyond the Gallery Walls, Penn Museum Blog, December 4, 2017.