Maia Atlantis: Ancient World Blogs

http://planet.atlantides.org/maia

Tom Elliott (tom.elliott@nyu.edu)

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

November 25, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

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

Conférence donnée par Laila Nehmé
dans le cadre du Séminaire "Techniques et économies de la Méditerranée antique" dirigé par Jean-Pierre Brun.
- Pour en savoir plus sur ce séminaire

JPEG - 143.5 ko
Carte de la Coste d'Arabie, Mer Rouge et Golphe de Perse, tirée de la carte Françoise de l'Océan Oriental - 1754




















November 21, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

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

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

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

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

- Consulter le programme

Contact

November 14, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

Le christianisme syriaque en Asie centrale et en Chine

XIIe Table ronde de la Société d'études syriaques :
Le christianisme syriaque en Asie centrale et en Chine

- Consulter le programme

La Société d'études syriaques organise chaque année une table ronde thématique à l'intention de ses membres, des syriacisants français et étrangers, et de tous ceux qui sont intéressés par les cultures syriaques en Orient, en Asie et en Occident.

Chaque table ronde débouche sur un volume publié l'année suivante dans la collection Etudes syriaques.
Derniers volumes parus :
Les Pères grecs dans la tradition syriaque (2007)
L'Ancien Testament en syriaque (2008)
L'historiographie syriaque (2009)
Le monachisme syriaque (2010)
La mystique syriaque (2011)
L'hagiographie syriaque (2012)
Les églises en monde syriaque (2013)
Les sciences en syriaque (2014)

informations : www.etudessyriaques.org/actus.php





avec le soutien du Labex RESMED

Les mots de la paix

Journée d'étude organisée dans le cadre du projet de recherche :
La paix : concepts, pratiques et systèmes politiques

- Télécharger le programme

November 08, 2014

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

L'Anatolie de l'époque archaïque à Byzance

Journée d'étude de l'école doctorale 1 : Mondes anciens et médiévaux

- Consulter le programme

Journée d'études à la mémoire de Pierre Bordreuil

Programme

9h15 : accueil par Corinne LANOIR, doyenne de la Faculté de théologie protestante de Paris

introduction par Françoise BRIQUEL CHATONNET et Marion FÉVRIER BORDREUIL

9h30 : Première session, présidée et introduite par Dennis PARDEE

9h 40 :Robert HAWLEY et Hedwige ROUILLARD BONRAISIN : « A la recherche du sens perdu des mots ougaritiques : un savoir gourmand et gourmet »

10h10 : Jean MARGUERON et Béatrice MULLER : « Questions sur le temple palatial d'Ugarit »

10h40 : Leila BADRE : « Les pays d'Amurru et les pays d'Ugarit ne font qu'un »

11h10-11h40 : Pause

11h40 : Carole ROCHE-HAWLEY : « Milieux lettrés syriens au XIIIe siècle »

12h05 : Arnaud SÉRANDOUR et Sophie CLUZAN : « Baal, Yahweh et les étoiles »

12h35-14h30 : repas

14h30 Deuxième session présidée et introduite par Rolf STUCKY

14h40 : Maria-Grazia MASETTI-ROUAULT : « Le monde syro-mésopotamien à l'Âge du Fer I-II : cultures locales et culture impériale, entre Assyriens et Araméens »

15h10 : Frédérique DUYRAT : « Comportements monétaires en Syrie à l'époque achéménide »

15h30 : Françoise BRIQUEL CHATONNET : « Migraines d'épigraphiste »

15h55-16h20 pause

16h20 : Annie CAUBET et Marguerite YON : « Tubal Caïn, Kothar Khasis et le pseudo Bès »

17h10 : Eric GUBEL : « Bon oeuf – Bon poussin ? Une enquête de Pierre menée à bien »

17h 40 : Felice ISRAEL : témoignage d'amitié

- Télécharger le programme

October 31, 2014

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Today In 475: Romulus Augustulus Became Emperor

... well, he tends to be seen more as an usurper, and his puppet 'reign' lasted less than a year before the boy was sent into exile in Naples.



If you enjoyed this video by Adrian Murdoch, check out his book on The Emperors of Rome; Kindle UK, Kindle US, etc

Adrian has also written a book about Romulus Augustulus, although since there is so little information about him, it is more a history of the period.

The Last Roman: Romulus Augustulus and the Decline of the West - Amazon UK


Archaeological News on Tumblr

Ben-Hur villa at risk of demolition in Rome

The remains of an ancient Roman villa linked to one of the principal characters in the legend of...

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Instrumentum: Groupe de travail européen sur l'artisanat et productions manufacturées dans l'Antiquit

Instrumentum: Groupe de travail européen sur l'artisanat et productions manufacturées dans l'Antiquit
http://www.instrumentum-europe.org/images/masthead3.jpg 
INSTRUMENTUM est un groupe de travail international composé de chercheurs travaillant sur l'artisanat antique et ses produits dans l'Europe et le Bassin méditerranéen. Le champ chronologique couvert par l'association concerne les Ages du Fer européens ainsi que les cultures Grecque et Romaine, avec de possibles incursions dans l'Age du Bronze et le Moyen Age.

INSTRUMENTUM s'est donné pour but de fédérer les recherches sur l'artisanat antique et ses productions en faisant connaître les travaux publiés, afin de mieux comprendre les conditions dans lesquelles l'artisanat, les productions et les techniques ont évolué antérieurement au Moyen Age. INSTRUMENTUM publie tous les 6 mois (en juin et en décembre) un Bulletin regroupant diverses informations, encourageant la recherche et facilitant la communication internationale entre les chercheurs de tous horizons. Une mise à jour bibliographique, des articles plus ou moins brefs selon les besoins, ainsi que des demandes de renseignements peuvent faire partie du contenu de chaque livraison en fonction des besoins des membres.

Par ailleurs, depuis juin 1997, INSTRUMENTUM a également publié 36 monographies sur divers aspects de l'artisanat antique (thèses, colloques, recueil divers...) (Editions Monique Mergoil). Cette collection très active comprend en permanence plusieurs volumes en préparation.

INSTRUMENTUM a également organisé, financé ou co-organisé des dizianes de manifestations scientifiques, dans plusieurs pays européens, sur des thèmes proposés par ses membres
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INSTRUMENTUM is a working-group that comprises scholars interested in the crafts and industries of ancient Europe and the Mediterranean. The chronological scope of the organization covers the European Iron Age and the eras of Greek and Roman civilization, with some overlap into the late Bronze Age and the early Middle Ages.

The aim of INSTRUMENTUM is to bring together research on crafts and industries by drawing attention to published work, thus elucidating the conditions in which crafts, industries, and manufacturing techniques evolved before the Middle Ages. Twice a year INSTRUMENTUM issues the Bulletin, which disseminates information, encourages research, and facilitates international communication. An up-to-date bibliography, brief notices on current research, and requests for information also are included in an attempt to promote and facilitate research on objects, their use, and manufacture. Since June 1997 INSTRUMENTUM has published 35 monographs on ancient crafts and industries (Editions Monique Mergoil), with several more in preparation.

INSTRUMENTUM also has organized and supported dozens of scientific meetings in various countries on topics proposed by members. 
Publications Topics Bibliography Announcements Dissertations Links Contact

Instrumentum Bibliographies
Click on a topic for a specific bibliography
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BiblePlaces Blog

CORONA Atlas of the Middle East

(Post by A.D. Riddle)

I recently discovered a mapping resource hosted by the University of Arkansas, the CORONA Atlas of the Middle East. The CORONA Atlas is not a brand new website (it was reviewed in 2012), but it says it is still in BETA stage. Simply put, the CORONA Atlas of the Middle East overlays CORONA satellite imagery over Google Earth imagery.

What is CORONA imagery?
During the Cold War, CORONA was a codename for one of the United States' top-secret satellite missions created to capture high-resolution imagery. The first mission was launched into space in 1960, and the program continued until 1972. The imagery was declassified in 1995, making it available to the public.

What is the value of CORONA imagery?
From the CORONA Atlas of the Middle East:
In regions like the Middle East, CORONA imagery is particularly important for archaeology because urban development, agricultural intensification, and reservoir construction over the past several decades have obscured or destroyed countless archaeological sites and other ancient features such as roads and canals. These sites are often clearly visible on CORONA imagery, enabling researchers to map sites that have been lost and to discover many that have never before been documented. 

For example, in 1998, James Hoffmeier and his team were able to locate additional sections of Egypt's east frontier canal in northern Sinai thanks to CORONA imagery.

What has the University of Arkansas done with the imagery?
First, even though CORONA imagery is in the public domain, there are costs associated with digitization of the original film and acquisition of the files. The University of Arkansas has purchased much of this imagery and made it available for researchers. Second, the University of Arkansas corrected the spatial geometry of the photos for distortion (orthorectification) and has positioned the imagery in real geographic space (georectification). This allows the CORONA Atlas to overlay the CORONA imagery on top of other imagery that is positioned in the same geographic space.

How can the CORONA Atlas of the Middle East be used?
Recently, I was trying to locate the site of Samsat in Turkey. Samsat is believed to be ancient Kummuḫ, capital of a Neo-Hittite kingdom by the same name. (In the Hellenistic period, it was replaced by the kingdom of Commagene.) The problem with finding Samsat today, however, is that it now lies at that bottom of Lake Atatürk Dam. It is very hard to find a tell in a lake. The Atatürk Dam was built on the Euphrates River and was completed in 1990. The reservoir flooded the valley of the Euphrates River and its tributaries, and the lake today covers approximately 320 square miles. The CORONA Atlas of the Middle East allows me to see Samsat (and the Euphrates River) before it was submerged, and to locate it with precision in Google Earth, because you can adjust the transparency of the CORONA imagery. The CORONA atlas also has tools for measuring, obtaining coordinates, and capturing imagery for other uses.

Here is a comparison of images taken from the CORONA Atlas of the Middle East. On the left is the Google Earth imagery, in the center is the CORONA imagery with some transparency over Google Earth, and on the right is the CORONA imagery.


The tell of Samsat is located in the center of the right photograph. Here is a close-up.


Head on over and poke around. It took my internet service several moments to load imagery, so it may require you to have a little patience.


Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Artefacts©, Encyclopédie en ligne des petits objets archéologiques

Artefacts©, Encyclopédie en ligne des petits objets archéologiques
http://artefacts.mom.fr/en/images/banner.jpg

Ceci est la version en cours d’élaboration d'Artefacts©, Encyclopédie en ligne des petits objets archéologiques. 

La base de données librement accessible sur l'internet reflète une partie d’une base de travail enrichie en permanence par un réseau de chercheurs. Elle permet d’effectuer des recherches simples, ou plus complexes.

Qu 'est-ce qu'un "petit objet" ? Les spécialistes en discutent encore... Après la numismatique, dont le champ d'application (la monnaie) est assez bien défini, la céramologie a été la première à s'ériger en spécialité archéologique. Mais s'intéresse-t-elle au matériau (la terre cuite) ou à ce qu'on en fait ? De fait, beaucoup d'objets sont produits en argile, et le critère du matériau n'est pas le meilleur pour trier ce qui relèverait de la céramologie ou d'une nouvelle spécialité, celle concernant les objets. Au cours des dernières années s'est imposé le critère fonctionnel, qui permet de confier aux "céramologues" tout ce qui est vaisselle, de cuisine (préparation, service) ou de stockage (amphores...). Les "objets", qui ne sont pas toujours petits, c'est donc le reste.

Catégorie vaste, donc, et variée, puisqu'elle touche à presque tous les domaines de l'activité humaine. Pour mettre un peu d'ordre dans ce très vaste ensemble, Artefacts utilise un système hiérarchique à trois niveaux, sur lequel vient se greffer la chronologie. Chaque objet est attribué à une fonction, et chaque fonction entre dans un domaine. Ainsi un "dé à jouer" (code DEJ) appartient à la fonction "jeu-comptage", qui est elle-même insérée par le domaine socio-culturel. Il s'agit ici d'identifier la fonction première des objets, celle pour laquelle ils ont été conçus, et non leur réutilisation éventuelle dans un contexte secondaire (par exemple religieux, ou funéraire).

L'optique principale d'Artefacts est d'ordre typologique, mais certains types existent [presque] sous la même forme à des époques différentes. Un dé cubique en os, par exemple, pourra donc se trouver en DEJ-3, DEJ-4 ou DEJ-9 selon qu'il est étrusque, romain ou médiéval. Il est donc intéressant, quand on a trouvé le code de l'objet recherché (DEJ-, dans l'exemple ci-dessus), d'aller voir les attestations dans d'autres périodes, pour mesurer l'évolution de cette forme à travers le temps.


This is the "in progress" version of Artefacts©, Online Encyclopedia of Archaeological Small Finds.
This database, in free access on the internet, reflects part of a working base to which many researchers have contributed. It allows simple, or more advanced searches.

What is an artefact ? Specialists still discuss the matter. After numismatics, of which the field (coinage) is well defined, ceramology was the first to reach the status of a speciality. But does ceramology deal with a material (terracotta) of with what is done with it ? Several artefacts are actually made of terracotta, and using the material is probably not the best way to sort data between what regards 'ceramology' and what could be given to a new speciality, 'artefacts stydy'. During the last years, 'functional sorting' imposed itself as the most useful criterium : creamology can study all the vessels, either for preparing, serving or storing goods, while 'artefacts study' deals with the rest.

A vast category, therefore, and various, touching nearly any domain of human activity. To attempt ordering this huge chaos, Artefacts makes use of a 3-level hierarchy, on which chronology is added. Every objectr is attributed to a function, and any functrion enters a domain. For ex., a dice (code DEJ) belongs to the 'game & counting' function, which is part of the 'socio-cultural' domain. The aim of this system is to identify the primary function of artefacts, for which they were produced, not their eventual re-use in a secondary context (such as religious, or funerary).

The main ambition of Artefacts is typological, but some types exist under (nearly) the same form under variuous epochs. A cubic solid bone dice, for example, will be found under DEJ-3, DEJ-4 or DEJ-9 according to its date, Etruscan, Roman or Medieval.When the code of a certain object type is available (DEJ-, in the above example), it is therefore interesting to serach it under othet periods, to evaluate the evolution of this form through the course of time.
Welcome Instructions for use Codes Bibliography Musées Mapping Copyright FAQ News Links Forum Open account Log in
Advanced search

Laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée

Actualités 2014

Novembre 2014


- Conférence
6 novembre 2014, 18h15
Association Bible et terre sainte
Institut catholique de Paris, 21 rue d'Assas, 75006

Dennis Pardee : D'Ougarit à Zincirli : repas sacrés, repas profanes, repas mortuaires

Entrée libre


- Conférence
7 novembre 2014, 12h
Institut catholique de Paris, 21 rue d'Assas, 75006

Dennis Pardee : L'autre scribe des textes littéraires ougaritiques (XIIIe s. av. J.-C.)

Conférence donnée dans le cadre des Vendredis de l'ELCOA. Entrée libre

En savoir plus


- Journée d'étude
8 novembre 2014 - 9h15 à 18h

Paris, Institut de théologie protestante

Journée d'étude à la mémoire de Pierre BORDREUIL

Informations et programme


- Communication
10 novembre 2014

Journée d'étude : Ex Oriente luxuria
Paris, École normale supérieure

Laetitia GRASLIN - Produits de luxe dans les sources écrites mésopotamiennes au premier millénaire av. J.-C.

Programme


- Conférence
12 novembre 2014

Bâle, Université de Bâle (Alttestamentlich-semitistisches Kolloquium)

Laïla NEHMÉ - Hegra and the Nabataeans in Northwest Arabia / Hégra et la présence nabatéenne en Arabie du Nord-Ouest

Informations


- Colloque international
14 novembre 2014

Paris, Institut de théologie protestante

XIIe Table ronde de la Société d'études syriaques : Le christianisme syriaque en Asie centrale et en Chine

Colloque organisé par la Société d'études syriaques
Informations et programme


- Séminaire

17 novembre 2014 - 14h-16h
Lyon, Maison de l'Orient et de la Méditerranée

Laïla NEHMÉ - Hégra cité caravanière d'Arabie ?

Séminaire du laboratoire Archéorient : Actualités des méthodes et du terrain au Proche-Orient ancien
Programme 2014-2015


- Colloque international
21-22 novembre 2014

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

5e Rencontres d'archéologie de l'IFEA
L'hittitologie aujourd'hui : études sur l'Anatolie hittite et néo-hittite à l'occasion du centenaire de la naissance d'Emmanuel Laroche

Informations et programme


- Séminaire au Collège de France
25 novembre 2014 - 10h à 12h

Collège de France, 11, Place Marcelin Berthelot, 75005, Paris
Amphithéâtre Marguerite de Navarre

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

Séminaire donné dans le cadre du cours du Professeur Jean-Pierre BRUN, Techniques et économies de la Méditerranée antique


- Conférence au musée du Louvre
28 novembre 2014 - 12h30

Paris, musée du Louvre

Olivier ROUAULT, Université Lyon 2 et Maria Grazia MASETTI-ROUAULT, EPHE, Paris - Quatre saisons de fouilles au Kurdistan d'Irak : la mission archéologique française à Qasr Shemamok, 2011-2014

Entrée libre
Conférence donnée dans le cadre du cycle Actualité de la recherche archéologique, 2014-2015


- Colloque
28 novembre 2014

Institut catholique de Paris
21, rue d'Assas, 75006 Paris

Correspondre au Proche-Orient ancien : lettres et messages en tous sens - Colloque ELCOA : Langues anciennes en contexte

Informations et programme


Octobre 2014


- Communications

- L'argent des dieux. Religions et richesses en Méditerranée dans l'Antiquité et au Moyen Âge
16-18 octobre 2014

Jimmy DACCACHE - Les dépenses pour l'édification des sanctuaires : Étude comparative des sources phéniciennes et hébraïques

Carole ROCHE-HAWLEY et Alice MOUTON - Les « trésors » des temples en Syrie et en Anatolie (XIVe - XIIe s. av. J.-C.)

Informations et programme


- Communication à l'Académie

Vendredi 3 octobre 2014 - 15h30

Mme Valérie MATOÏAN

Ougarit et les Phéniciens : divinités protectrices et guérisseuses. Lecture d'images

Institut de France - 23, Quai de Conti - Paris 6e


- Colloque international

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

9 au 10 octobre 2014
Collège de France, salle Claude Lévi-Strauss
52, rue du cardinal Lemoine. 75005 Paris
Colloque organisé par H. ROUILLARD-BONRAISIN, M.-G. MASETTI-ROUAULT, J.-M. VERDIER, Chr. LEMARDELÉ

Informations et programme


Septembre 2014


- Communications

- 8e World Syriac Conference
8-16 septembre 2014
St. Ephrem Ecumenical Research Institute, Kottayam, Kerala (India)

Participation de Françoise BRIQUEL CHATONNET, Alain DESREUMAUX, Robert HAWLEY, Carole ROCHE, Linda HERVEUX, Matthias WERNHARDT, Jimmy DACCACHE

Informations


- Communication

- 9th International Congress of Hittitology
1-7 septembre 2014
Hitit University, Çorum (Turquie)

Alice MOUTON - Ritualized Violence in Hittite Anatolia

Informations


Juillet 2014


- Communications

- 21-25 juillet 2014
- 60th Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale. "Fortune and Misfortune"
- Université de Varsovie

Workshop 9. In Memoriam Pierre Bordreuil

Valérie MATOIAN - De l'alphabet cunéiforme aux divinités d'Ougarit : une recherche au sein de la mission de Ra shamra

Françoise ERNST-PRADAL - Pierre Bordreuil, un professeur de terrain

Hedwige ROUILLARD-BONRAISIN - Pierre Bordreuil et le Pays d'Ougarit

Workshop 6. Beyond Hierarchies : Heterarchy and Gender

Vanessa JULOUX - How to define relation between ʿAnatu and Baʿlu : answer by absence of proofs

Informations et programme


- Communication

- 24 juillet 2014
- Xe Congrès de l'association européenne des études juives (EAJS) - Session Rabbinic Literature
- Paris, Ecole normale supérieure

Gavin McDowell - Christian Legend and Anti-­‐Christian Polemic in the Pirqe de-­Rabbi Eliezer

Informations et programme


- Communication à l'Académie

Vendredi 4 juillet 2014 - 15h30

MM. ‘Alî Ibrâhîm al-GHABBÂN, Saïd al-SAÏD et Christian ROBIN (membre de l'AIBL)

Inscriptions antiques récemment découvertes à Najrān (Arabie séoudite méridionale) : nouveaux jalons pour l'histoire de l'oasis et celle de l'écriture et de la langue arabes

Institut de France - 23, Quai de Conti - Paris 6e


- Soutenance

Jeudi 3 juillet 2014, 14h - Paris, salle des Actes, en Sorbonne
Soutenance d'habilitation de Stephanie ANTHONIOZ

Israël dans son environnement proche-oriental. La construction d'une identité religieuse au Ier millénaire av. n. è.

Sous la direction de Marie-Françoise BASLEZ

Jury :
▪ Fr. BRIQUEL CHATONNET
▪ M. Gr. MASETTI-ROUAULT
▪ O. MUNNICH
▪ Fr. JOANNES
▪ Th. RÖMER
▪ M. G. BIGA


Juin 2014


- Soutenance

Samedi 21 juin 2014, 14h - Paris, Amphithéâtre Michelet, en Sorbonne
Soutenance d'habilitation de Jean-Baptiste YON

Histoire et écritures. Population et sociétés du Proche-Orient d'Alexandre à l'islam

Sous la direction de Françoise BRIQUEL-CHATONNET
Jury :
▪ Thomas Corsten (Professeur, Université de Vienne)
▪ Muriel Debié (Directrice d'études, EPHE)
▪ Denis Feissel (Directeur de recherche, CNRS)
▪ Michel Gawlikowski (Professeur émérite, Université de Varsovie)
▪ Maurice Sartre (Professeur émérite, Université de Tours)
▪ Giusto Traina (Professeur, Université Paris Sorbonne)


- Communications

- 9-13 juin 2014
- 9. International Congress on the Archaeology of the Ancient Near East
- Université de Bâle

Guillaume CHARLOUX et al. - New Evidence of the Nabatean Presence in the Jawf Region at the Dawn of Romanization : a Triclinium at Dûmat al- Jandal (North Saudi Arabia)

Jérémie SCHIETTECATTE et al. - al-Yamāma. Excavation of an Islamic city in Central Arabia

Olivier ROUAULT et Maria Grazia MASETTI-ROUAULT - French excavations in Qasr Shemamok, Iraqi Kurdistan (2013 and 2014 campaigns) : the Assyrian Town, and Beyond

Guillaume CHARLOUX et Romolo LORETO - The Saudi-Italian-French Archaeological project at Dûmat al-Jandal (ancient Adummatu) : Results from 2009-2013 Seasons

Informations et programme


- Communications

- 4-7 juin 2014
- 18e Rencontres Sabéennes - Populations en mouvement, colonisations, migrations, sédentarisation

- Saint Petersbourg, Institut des manuscrits orientaux

Christian ROBIN - Les inscriptions rupestres de la région de Himâ (Najrân, Arabie séoudite)

Mounir ARBACH - Mission diplomatique aux Pays de Sha'mat, d'après une inscription sabéenne de Jabal Riyâm datant du milieu du 2ème siècle de l'ère chrétienne

Informations et programme des Rencontres


Mai 2014


- Communication

- 26 mai 2014
- CRAterre, Séminaire Patrimoine 2014 - La conservation des architectures de terre sur les sites archéologiques. Nouvelles pratiques et perspectives
- Ecole nationale supérieure d'architecture de Grenoble (ENSAG)

Jérémie SCHIETTECATTE - Entre archéologie, tourisme et idéologie. La préservation et la valorisation d'un site en cours d'étude : la grande mosquée d'al-Yamâma (Arabie Saoudite).

Informations et programme du séminaire


- Cycle de conférences

Mercredis 7, 14, 21 et 28 mai 2014, 10h à 12h
EPHE, Bâtiment le France

Marie Theres WACKER, Professeur à la Faculté de Théologie Catholique (Université de Münster), Directrice d'études invitée

Homme sauvage et femmes étrangères. Le Cycle d'Élie (1 R 17- 2 R 2) dans la perspective du « genre »/des genres

Informations et programme


- Communications

6 et 7 mai 2014
Langage et communication. 139e congrès du CTHS, 5 au 10 mai 2014
Université de Nîmes

Carole ROCHE-HAWLEY - Les références à l'Antique dans les inscriptions monumentales mésopotamiennes

Françoise BRIQUEL CHATONNET - Un cas d'allographie : le garshuni

Jimmy DACCACHE - Guerres et discours royaux dans le monde ouest-sémitique au Ier millénaire avant J.-C.

Darya PEVEAR - Traduire la littérature en Mésopotamie : comment et pourquoi ? Les textes suméro-akkadiens du Ier millénaire avant J.-C

Informations et programme du colloque


Avril 2014



- Conférence

11 avril 2014, 12 h.
Christian ROBIN, Membre de l'Institut – Directeur de recherche émérite au CNRS

Les juifs dans l'Arabie antique

ELCOA - Institut catholique de Paris
21 rue d'Assas - 75006 Paris

En savoir plus


Mars 2014


- Cycle de conférences

Social History from Early Rabbinic Texts

Lundi 17 mars 2014, 11h-13h : Rabbinic Texts and the History of Roman Palestine

Lundi 24 mars 2014, 11h-13h : Prosbul and the History of Debt

Lundi 31 mars 2014, 11h-13h : The Development and Cessation of Religious Taboos

Lundi 7 avril 2014, 11h-13h : Marriage and Divorce Documents and Local Forms of Marriage

Cycle de conférences de M. Martin GOODMAN, Professeur à l'Université d'Oxford, Directeur d'Etudes invité dans le cadre des conférences de M. Daniel STÖKL BEN EZRA, Langue, littérature, épigraphie et paléographie hébraïques et araméennes du IVe siècle avant notre ère au IVe siècle de notre ère (Section des Sciences historiques et philologiques)

Les conférences auront lieu dans la salle D059 de la Sorbonne (17 rue de la Sorbonne, 75005 Paris, Escalier E 1er étage).


- Vient de paraître

Michel MOUTON et Jérémie SCHIETTECATTE

In the Desert Margins : the Settlement Process in an Ancient South and East Arabia
Rome, l'Erma di Bretschneider, 2014, (Arabia Antica, 9)

En savoir plus


- Vient de paraître

Renée SCEMAMA

Zacharie, le prophète exégète. Ko amar Adonaï : modalités et enjeux du discours prophétique dans le livre de Zacharie 1-8. Analyse littéraire
Paris, Gabalda, 2014 (Etudes bibliques, 65), 618 p.
ISBN : 978-2-85021-226-0

En savoir plus


- communications à l'Académie

Vendredi 21 mars 2014 - 15h30

Mme Alessandra Avanzini (professeur à l'Université de Pise) sous le patronage de M. Christian ROBIN :

Sumhuram, un port d'Arabie entre Inde et Rome

M. Michel al-Maqdissi (chercheur à la Direction nationale des Antiquités de Damas), sous le patronage de MM. Jean-Marie DENTZER et Christian ROBIN :

Amrith, nouvelles recherches sur la ville phénicienne

Institut de France - 23, Quai de Conti - Paris 6e


Février 2014





- Vient de paraître

Sophie CLUZAN et Pascal BUTTERLIN (dir.)

Voués à Ishtar : Syrie, janvier 1934, André Parrot découvre Mari : exposition au musée de l'Institut du monde arabe, [Paris], 23 janvier - 4 mai 2014

En savoir plus


Janvier 2014






- Vient de paraître

M. AZAIEZ (éd.), S. MERVIN (collab.)

Le Coran. Nouvelles approches

En savoir plus







- Vient de paraître

F. BARATTE, C. J. ROBIN et E. ROCCA (éd.)

Regards croisés d'Orient et d'Occident. Les barrages dans l'Antiquité tardive. Actes du colloque, 7-8 janvier 2011, Paris
Orient et Méditerranée|Archéologie 14

En savoir plus



- Formation - 16 janvier 2014

  • Séminaire des doctorants de Paris IV

Le numérique pour le jeune chercheur et enseignant en humanités : environnement, enjeux, outils documentaires

Service commun de la documentation, Université Paris Sorbonne Paris 4
Séminaire : 16 janvier
Ateliers : janvier et février 2014

Informations et inscription
Programme


Voir les actualités 2013

Paola Arosio and Diego Meozzi (Stone Pages' Archaeonews)

Bronze Age settlement in England found using Google Earth

Devonshire treasure hunter Howard Jones trawled satellite images for the sort of terrain that would have offered food, water and shelter for a prehistoric settlement, pinpointing a spot in the...

Ancient sundial discovered on a Russian stone slab

The stone slab is marked with round divots arranged in a circle, and an astronomical analysis suggests that these markings coincide with heavenly events, including sunrises and moonrises. Last year,...

Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

Friday Varia and Quick Hits

Our mild and sunny fall has given way to grey and cold to remind us that winter is on the way here in North Dakotaland.

To compensate for the failing sun, I woke up early this morning to get some sunshine and vitamin D by watching Pakistan v. Australia in Abu Dhabi. Unfortunately, Australia can’t get anyone out so my sunny morning involves watching Younus Kahn’s double century and Misbah-ul-Haq score a century. Oh well, the great thing about test match cricket is when a match is well and truly over, you still have three days more to savor the agony.

One more thing, if you haven’t checked out the first installment of my Tourist Guide to the Bakken Oil Patch, please click over to Medium to give it a read.

On to the varia and quick hits:

IMG 2246Milo sez: The rug really tied the room together


Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Amphipolis: Oh Ye of Little Faith

First off a little clarification - "hold your horses" is an English expression, an idiom which means "hold on" or "wait" ... I realised the in the English language we find puns as funny as the ancient Greeks did (for example a lion shown on the tomb of a man named Leo), but when people are reading across languages they can be confusing.

Maybe one day the Ministry of Culture will make our dreams come true and release an image of a horse which said "Alexander's horse" ;-) ... but please just take the expression at face value.

Speaking of horses, they had great meaning to the ancients, being both tractor and Ferrari, an indispensable tool and a means of showing off wealth. Many Macedonian and Thracian tombs had items belonging to the deceased buried outside the entrance, so that first thing I asked the excavators this time last year when they were digging the entrance was "did you find a chariot?" and the answer was no. That's one of the many reasons I assumed the tomb would not be filled with gold and grave goods, another being that we were well aware that it had been destroyed at some point and so was likely to have been emptied. Even if tomb robbers had stolen the gold and so forth, had it been used for burial they almost certainly would have left behind bits of bone, broken off fragments of objects and ash. The swan found inside could have swum in from the river, or it could have been killed for symbolic reasons - let's not forget it featured in numerous myths, for example Leda and the Swan.

Another English colloquial expression I was tempted to use yesterday was "it ain't over until the fat lady sings" - which means that we should not presume to know the outcome of an event still in progress ... but I didn't in case people misunderstood and thought I was accusing someone of being fat :-(  

Logic and years of experience tell me that there is a whole lot more to find at Amphipolis. 

I have done a couple of interviews in Greece this week, and one of the reasons I dislike doing press is because it gives the impression that I am the centre of a story, when the truth is that often there is a whole team working on a project, all of whom deserve credit.

One of the main reasons I did the press and am writing the book is to explain to people why the archaeologists working at Amphipolis are some of the very best in the world (I use the term 'archaeologist' in a generic way to include everyone from Dr Peristeri to the Architect Lefantzis to the technicians and guards and even the people of Amphipolis who have contributed). I was getting fed up of the way jealous archaeologists were trashing their site because of jealousy.

Today's press release is here.

I'm used to looking at the material from sites before a press release has been written, so for Amphipolis I look at the photos first.

So first off I see much rougher limestone blocks than the beautifully cut marble used elsewhere on the tomb ... and evidence that the tomb could go down further or that these could be the foundations; but if they are foundations, where is the finished floor that covered them? The earth underneath the blocks has many very clear layers of stratigraphy, with several that appear in the photograph to be distinctly different.

Then I see a door. The side of the door facing the viewer is rough, so this is the side which would have been by the doorframe and hidden.


Then I note the the design of the door is very different from the other photographs of the door with large 'nails' (or small shields): is this a different door or the reverse of the same door showing the interior view? The door looks thinner, but this could be an optical illusion due to the design and angle.


This photo tells me less about the excavation, more about what the archaeologists are thinking. Probably along the lines of "oh shit and we thought we'd get to go home this week-end" ... and "the Greeks wanted more, and this could well be more. Is it the start of something ...? when will the tomb end?" ... should we dress up as ghosts tonight and scare our colleagues for Halloween? (Okay, I admit the last bit I made up)


Then I look at the statement.

"revealed the foundations of the side walls. The mounting wall sits on artificial embankment of well compacted gravel with clay, thickness about 0.40 m" which confirms that the yellowish band is clay.

"The embankment was standing on the bedrock of the Kasta hill, which appears as a surface of fragmented schist" My Greek is poor, so the normal translation of σχιστόλιθος is slate ... but schist is another, and it seems more likely that ...?  Bedrock to me suggests that most of the mound was indeed artificial; it is possible the tomb goes down into the bedrock elsewhere, as tombs often did, but not there?

They go on to confirm that they found an artificial trench showing that there was at least an attempt to dig down into the rock. Silty sand like the rest of the tomb. They have already excavated 1.40 m down, and that they say they have not reached the threshold suggests that it might go down further?

The second marble door was found in this pit, further emphasising the idea that it was 'open' when the tomb was back-filled with soil.

The rest is just more details of technical work and shoring up.

Just to quickly add to what we were discussing last night in comments and on Twitter. Someone suggested that since I had made a point that the 1930s excavators had found enough to think the Lion Monument had stood near where they excavated it ... instead of my suggestion that it was re-erected not long after the tomb was built ... could there instead have been two monuments with Lions? 

I don't believe I'm always right, sometimes I'm wrong. And I am a great believer in discussing ideas as they can sometimes go nowhere and sometimes lead to a solution.

This map shows Kasta in red, where the Lion was erected in the '30s in green and the yellow thunderbolt of Zeus to show very roughly where the material was found in the 1930s.


The destruction of the tomb and the movement of the blocks is almost a bigger puzzle than who built it. Yes, two monuments sounds mad, and I can't think of a precedent, but then so little at Amphipolis has precedent and that's what indicates it was an important tomb ...

Antibes in France was originally Antipolis - anti-city, not in the negative sense, but as a pendent to and pre- echo of a larger city, possible Nikeia (Nice) or more likely Cannes.

The idea of a smaller monument to complement the larger one has no equivalent that I can think of. But given that Alexander was worshiped alongside his friend Hephaestion in many of his cults in Egypt, and that one of the things Alexander did before he died was order a tomb for Hephaestion ... it could almost serve as a 'gateway' to the larger heroon, the way gates to sanctuaries served?

No, I do not think that there are two tombs, but I also think it is worth exploring ideas and it is not impossible. It is only by discussing our ideas that we can clarify our thoughts.

 

The Vampire of Veliko Turnovo


Found in Bulgaria in 2012 ...

Bulgaria’s ‘vampire’ saga continues | The Sofia Globe:
This time it was near Veliko Turnovo, in a necropolis near the St. Ivan Rilski church and is from a much later period – 18th century CE.
The head of the archaeological dig, Professor Nikolai Ovcharov, told public broadcaster Bulgarian National Radio that there was nothing sensational in such findings.
He said that all kinds of rituals protecting the deceased from turning into vampires were widely practiced up until the beginning of the 20th century CE.
“For example the deceased is pierced through the heart, or stones are piled up on top of the body”, Ovcharov said.
“There is a ritual in which embers are placed on the chest of the deceased. Or his feet are tied. Or a fire is lit in the grave before the funeral. Those were folk practices from pagan times and didn’t mean necessarily that the deceased was evil or a vampire. It was simply believed that if the rituals are not carried out, s/he might turn into a vampire.”
Ovcharov said that in the grave in Veliko Turnovo, a purse was found, with about 30 silver coins so the deceased could pay for the passage to the other world and his feet were tied to prevent him from rising from the grave.

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Swedish glass production 300 years older than historians believed

Archaeologist Anna Ihr of the University of Gothenburg has excavated quantities of glassy...

ArcheoNet BE

Environmental Archaeology of European Cities: call for papers

Van 27 tot 29 mei 2015 vindt aan het KBIN in Brussel de ‘Conference on the Environmental Archaeology of European Cities’ plaats. Wie een paper wenst te presenteren op deze conferentie, kan nog tot 18 november een abstract indienen. De thema’s die aan bod komen zijn onder meer: het ontstaan van de stedelijke sites en stratigrafie, het stedelijk landschap, economische activiteiten en het persoonlijke leven van de stadsinwoners. Meer informatie over de conferentie en een overzicht van de keynote-sprekers is te vinden op www.naturalsciences.be of in deze bijlage (pdf).

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Vampires at the British Library

There's more about the exhibition on their web site: Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination

Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Antiquitist Special Pleading


Sam Hardy (‘Virtually none of them have a provenance that says where they were dug up or when’ referring back to one of my posts from yesterday makes a cogent point worth stressing and discussing:
antiquities collectors and dealers cannot deliberately obscure the origins of almost all of their antiquities, then complain that it is very difficult for them to know if the antiquities on the market are legal, then complain that they are unfairly disadvantaged by regulations that are designed to ensure that the antiquities on the market are legal.
They create their own disadvantage by consistently filling their stockrooms with material for which they have failed to verify a proper provenance and collecting history, in order to establish that the material they trade in is of wholly licit provenance. If responsible dealers only handled material for which they can establish licit origins, and then demonstrate to discerning customers, they would not be faced with the problem of offloading potentially dodgy stuff to buyers when they cannot. Instead they attempt to foster the myth that this is in some mysterious way always impossible (though, as we can all see, some dealers do manage it - and they cannot all be making it up). It is time to clean up the antiquities market and its dodgy arguments.

Archaeological News on Tumblr

Rezan Has Museum opens Urartian jewelry collection to public

Showing off the glory and wealth of the ancient Urartians, a new exhibition has opened at...

graduate classics students at Cambridge (res gerendae)

Classical Gothic

OtrantoGothic literature started in 1746 with Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto. That’s the orthodox line, the version you’ll see at the British Library exhibition. But it’s notoriously difficult to pinpoint the origins of literary genres; especially one as fuzzy and hard to define as ‘Gothic’. While there was certainly a definite tradition that started with Otranto, one thing that came quite clearly out of the exhibition was that the further you get away from that, the less cohesive and well-bounded that tradition becomes. Where do you draw the lines? Is Weird Fiction Gothic? Sometimes or always? Are zombies? What’s the difference between horror and Gothic? These aren’t questions I mean to answer – I don’t think they necessarily have simple answers – but if you include some of the more debatable offshoots of the tradition after Walpole, why not some things beforehand?

What I’m coming down to is this: is there such a thing as Classical Gothic?

It looks like an oxymoron at first. After all, the ‘Gothic’ tag Walpole attached to the second edition of his story does double service – it links it to a certain architectural style and aesthetic enjoying a revival in the eighteenth century, but it also marks the adventure’s Italian setting as specifically post-, perhaps anti-Classical. We think of Gothic as a literature of grey-skied, rainy, temperate Europe, rooted in its barbarian heritage. It stands in opposition to the idealised Culture and Reason of the Classical.

But, of course, the idea that the Classical world was a shining beacon of high culture, rationality and progress is as much an Enlightenment fantasy as Gothic literature itself. As any Classicist knows, the Greek and Roman worlds had their dark and strange underbellies, even within the mostly aristocratic texts that survive and despite any loftier ideals their great minds might have espoused. In that respect they have a great deal in common with the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries (and doubtless with pretty much any other century you care to name). It’s not hard to find elements of the Gothic in Classical texts. Two overlapping categories particularly spring to mind: tragedy and Neronian literature.

But, in classic essay-writing style, we’re going to have to define our terms before we go much further. I’ve already said Gothic is hard to pin down, but if we’re going to look for elements and themes, we need to have to know what they are. A few features have been widely mentioned as characterising the Gothic:

An ancient, or at least antique, setting.

  • A concern with the surfacing of the repressed and buried, both internally and externalised in the form of ghosts, spectres and monsters.
  • An predilection for doubles, doppelgängers and mistaken identity.
  • A concern with problematising straightforward gender roles, especially the feminine.
  • The breaking down of bodily boundaries, again especially feminine.
  • It’s a literature of an emerging middle class, and ambivalent to the traditions and privileges of the old establishment, at once repulsed by and coveting them.
  • Excess and the conspicuous transgression of norms of good taste.

That’s not exhaustive, but it’s enough to be getting on with.

Gothic Tragedy

Almost any ancient tragedy you care to name has at least some of those features. Let’s start obvious. Let’s start with Oedipus.

In his introduction to the Cambridge Companion to Gothic Fiction, Jerrold Hogle refers to Gothic fiction as an Oedipal genre because of its love and loathing of the past – the fifth point in the list above. Freud has been the starting point for a lot of writers in their thinking about Gothic: both his writings on psychoanalysis and his theories about the uncanny. So it’s no big surprise, then, that the Oedipus story itself ticks pretty much every box for Gothic. It’s set in the mythical past, even by Classical standards, in the crumbling and troubled palace of Thebes. The whole play revolves around Oedipus’s repressed memory coming to the fore and the havoc that causes (though the only monster is the absent Sphinx). The messed-up gender roles surrounding Jocasta are so obvious I hardly need mention them, and both her fate and that of her erstwhile husband Laios are cases of tragically mistaken identity. Bodily transgressions and breakdowns also feature prominently. Again Oedipus’ interactions with his parents, his self-mutilation, but also the preponderance of physical disabilities and disease. Incest, regicide and patricide is pretty much the trifecta of totemic transgressions. Bung it in a Gormenghast-style castle set, dress everyone in pseudo-mediaeval costumes and you’d recognise this as pure Gothica in a heartbeat.

Another one that immediately springs to mind is Euripides’ Bacchae, probably the standout Greek text on the violent explosion of repressed desire. Even more than Oedipus, it captures the sex, violence and scandal aspect of Gothic fiction. It’s about a band of cultists (female, naturally) belonging to an exotic, barbarian religion, bringing their dangerous and seductive god to ordered society, upturning the status quo and scandalising the prudish and prurient Pentheus with their refusal to conform to their expected gender roles. The women are outdoors on their own (!), up to who-knows-what in the dead of night (!!) and their leader’s a sexy, suave, uncomfortably effeminate man with supernatural powers (!!!) It has cross-dressing, mistaken identity (again), and culminates in a blood-soaked gore-fest with the brutal murder of a son by his own unknowing mother. Sounds pretty Gothic to me.

PentheusMedium

One more and I think I’ve made my point. The House of Atreus. Obviously there’s not actually a play called that, but it was the name of the Cambridge second-year tragedy course when I took it a decade ago. As an umbrella term for the various plays surrounding Agamemnon and his family, even then it struck me as having a particularly Gothic ring to it, echoing Poe’s House of Usher. But we can hardly label these stories Gothic based on the title of a Cambridge course, vitally important though the Classics Tripos undoubtedly is. Fortunately for my argument the same themes are there again. Mythical past, check. Once-great Palace Gone to the Dogs, check. Women Not Acting The Way They’re Supposed To, check. Bodily violation, check. The later volumes in the Oresteia even give us some proper monsters in the shape of the Furies. Less said about the courtroom drama ending, the better…

But while Aeschylos’s definitive take on this story has its share of Gothic elements, it’s Seneca’s Latin take on the cycle which really hits all the Gothic marks, and brings me into the second area I want to talk about.

Neronian Gothic

I’ve mainly talked about Greek stuff so far, but it’s the Romans who are the masters of ancient Gothic. Stuffy, pompous, jackbooted, morally-preachy-but-terrified-by-their-own-depravity, they’re the high Victorians of antiquity. Even the most straitlaced and respectable of Roman writers have at least some stuff that can be read in terms of Gothic themes. I’ve written before about the bit where Cicero kind of loses it a bit and accuses a foe of necromancy and cannibalism, and there’s a rich seam of Gothic in imagery in the Aeneid, especially Book VI. But the Neronian period’s where things really kick off. I can’t help thinking of it as antiquity’s answer to the 1980s, and if Aeschylos’s Oresteia is the worthy literary take on the House of Atreus stories, Seneca’s Thyestes is the straight-to-video-nasty schlock prequel.

It’s trash. But I really, really like it. I think I like it more than the Oresteia, and I like it even more because I know that’s wrong. Thyestes is the House of Atreus story with the gore turned up to eleven. From beginning to end it’s an exuberant, excessive carnival of body-parts, violence, transgression and blood, all lovingly described and just daring you to be repulsed. It’s horror, but is it Gothic? Absolutely. Brotherly rivalry, incest, secrets, lies, dismemberment and unwitting cannibalism (mistaken identity taken to the limit here, as Thyesetes mistakes his kids for dinner), all set in an ancient palace entering the last years of its dynasty.

But it’s not just the tragedy that’s Gothic in Neronian literature; arguably the whole tenor of the age is. As it’s passed down in literature, Nero’s whole court is like The Masque of the Red Death, a pageant of excess, bad taste, violence and spectacle. I’m going to talk about Petronius now, which may ring alarm bells for at least one current Cambridge PhD student, who argues the traditional attribution of his Satyricon to the Neronian period is mistaken. But even if it does post-date Nero’s court, Trimalchio is undoubtedly based on Nero and his dinner party is a comment on, and response to, the mores and style of his court. Needless to say, it’s every bit as brash, excessive and tacky as we imagine Nero himself to have been. From the dishes he serves to Trimalchio himself, the dinner-party is filled with the artificial and the false: nothing is what it pretends to be. As a comedy freedman, a social-climbing upstart with delusions of upper-classdom, Trimalchio embodies the Gothic ambivalence towards aristocracy and social mobility. But what elevates the story from the Neronian Keeping Up Appearances to a genuine work of the Gothic is that it’s positively dripping with monsters. Witches, owls, and, most delightfully, a very early but wholly recognisable werewolf story. The monstrosity of Trimalchio/Nero’s court is contrasted and reflected in these monstrous tales. Not just in its excess but in this horrific vein, it presages the later concerns and methods of Gothic fiction.romans

So while I’m not saying there was any kind of unbroken tradition connecting these Classical works to Gothic fiction of the eighteenth century and beyond, there is a wealth of material which can be read as Gothic or could easily be staged or retold as Gothic without much change. Which is reason enough, if any reason were needed beyond the fact that it’s really good, why any Classicist should get themselves over to the British Library and take in their exhibition.

Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination is on at the British Library until 20 January 2015. Adaptations of The Castle of Otranto and other Gothic classics are currently available from BBC Radio 4 Extra, and there’s a bunch of Gothumentaries from the BBC’s usual suspects on iPlayer.

Review: Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination

As the winds of October blew, five classicists set off for the British Library to take its exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination.

John_Henry_Fuseli_-_The_Nightmare

The exhibition covers roughly two centuries of works described as “gothic”, from Horace Walpole’s 1764 novel The Castle of Otranto to contemporary authors like Susan Hill and Sarah Waters. The exhibition is laid out more or less chronologically, with rooms dedicated to the major authors/works in the genre. It begins with Walpole, looking at not only editions and manuscripts of his novel, but also his letters which deal with the various events that may have inspired the novel, as well as various small items attesting to his antiquarian interests.

gothicFrom Walpole, one moves through the early nineteenth century explosion of gothic literature (including on display of the “seven horrid novels” referenced in Jane Austen’s send-up of the gothic, Northhanger Abbey) to a display dedicated to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. I found particularly effective the way in which the much-mythologized origins of that work were presented. The ghost-story competition in the Villa Diodati at which Shelley came up with the idea for the work is introduced through letters from Percy Shelley and Lord Byron – the latter accompanied by an audio recording of the letter, an extremely effective device that is used to good effect several times throughout the exhibition. This method allows us to see the degree to which the gathering of “outcast” poets and their hangers-on was already becoming legend in its own day, and the difficulty in separating fact from fiction when dealing with the lives of authors.

frontispiece-of-third-edition-first-illustrated-Moving into the later nineteenth century, the exhibition, with brief forays into the Brontes, Poe, Dickens and Stevenson, focusses on vampire literature with Bram Stoker’s Dracula taking centre stage. Perhaps as a result of the exigencies of preservation, the Dracula exhibit focusses much less on contemporary documents, and more on the reception of the text in the century following its publication. There is, of course, no shortage of such material, but compared to the earlier author-focussed exhibits this seemed to lack focus. One highlight of this collection, however, was a series of paper stage-sets for Dracula created by Edward Gorey – which were in fact on sale in the gift shop, and which at least one member of our party would have bought had his accommodation been more permanent.

gorey-theatre-1The exhibition began to run into trouble as it moved into the twentieth century. The exhibition certainly captured the fragmentation of the genre over the last 100 years – southern gothic, weird tales, and psychological horror stories are all represented, and convincingly argued to partake of the gothic legacy. But there seems little organization or narrative to this section; even the chronological principle is abandoned, with Arthur Machen’s works from the early 20th century coming after those by Susan Hill and Sarah Waters from the early 21st. After this point, the exhibition more or less fizzles out. After a brief mention of zombie literature (whose gothicness was a point of question in our party), we have tiny cabinets of children’s and young adult literature (Goth Girl, Twilight, a copy of Wuthering Heights with a hideously Twilight-esque cover), a brief display of cover art from Goth bands, and then some photos of participants at the annual Goth gathering in Whitby. There is little to no explanation of how and why modern Goth culture emerged, or how it draws on the earlier literature. Indeed, from the twentieth-century material on, the exhibition seemed largely to abandon analysis in favour of simply declaring “this is also a thing.”This was particularly jarring because, prior to this point, the documentation had been excellent.

The labels provided good background information on the works discussed, giving good overviews to those who have not read them without seeming patronizing to those who had. Particularly striking were displays that linked trends in gothic literature to reactions to contemporary events. So, for example, a display of pamphlets on the horrors of the French Reign of Terror was used to discuss how the increasingly bloody revolutions in Europe challenged Enlightenment optimism and focussed the minds of British writers on the darker aspects of the psyche; another display of the media circus that surrounded the Whitechapel Murders and “Jack the Ripper” was linked to the images of urban violence found in Dracula and Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde.

rippervic-wl

Less successful were attempts to integrate film into the exhibition. The various works were often accompanied by posters and indeed clips of film adaptations. While potentially useful for discussing reception, these tended to be under-analysed and ended up largely as distractions. A notable exception to this was one of the first clips, a response to The Castle of Otranto by Czech animator Jan Švankmajer.

ghostThe short film jumps between Monty-Python style animated illustrations of the novel and an “interview” with a mad Czech doctor who has concluded that the castle in question is not in Otranto in Italy but in fact in a Czech village of similar name. His bizarre linguistic and archaeological arguments sounded depressingly familiar to an audience of classicists. Also of note was a clip from The Wicker Man, whose chief villain bore a shocking resemblance to one senior member of the classics faculty. . .

thewickerman_lordsummerisle

One interesting aspect of the exhibition, whether positive or negative, was that, though discussions of individual works were extremely thorough, little was explicitly said about broader patterns. Perhaps most strikingly, no comprehensive definition of “gothic” was attempted. Whether this was a strength or weakness is difficult to say. While it may be partly responsible for the lack of focus toward the end of the exhibition, I think that it was to some degree a strength. Rather than being artificially imposed, an idea of the gothic was permitted to emerge cumulatively and organically from the material itself. On a smaller scale, little was done to trace the shifts in the genre. So, for example, the change in setting of gothic stories from the countryside in the early nineteenth century to the city in its latter half was not remarked upon; nor was there discussion, for example, of the role of women in gothic fiction – where earlier gothic fiction saw women like Ann Radcliffe and Mary Shelley highly influential, for much of the nineteenth century women seem largely to have vanished as authors of gothic fiction, only to reappear strongly in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries as the leading gothic revivalists. On the other hand, the fact that I perceived these trends without their being explicitly mentioned perhaps means that specific mention is unnecessary, as the logic of the exhibition will naturally produce these conclusions.

These concerns aside, the exhibition was highly effective, and stimulated a great deal of reflection on the idea of the gothic, and its broader application. Can Hamlet, Macbeth and Lear be considered gothic? And what about further back? Did the ancients themselves have a “gothic” of their own? Stay tuned. . .


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The ‘Vampire of Vratsa’ ...


In July Bulgarian archaeologists " a medieval vampire burial site had been found during excavations of an ancient fortress near Vratsa" ...

Archaeology: Bulgaria’s ‘Vampire of Vratsa’ | The Sofia Globe:
Unlike the previously well-known method of disposing of vampires by driving a stake through the heart, the funeral ritual of the “Vampire of Vratsa” ... involved a boulder from the mountain. ... archaeologists have found the grave of an elderly man of a unusually tall height for the time, 1.8 metres. The burial site testifies to the special treatment of the deceased. On his heart, archaeologists found a deliberately placed processed white stone, said to be part of rituals against vampirism.
Archaeologist Alexandra Petrova told Bulgarian National Television that placing a stone on the chest, notably the left side where the heart is, was part of such a practice, that could also involve stabbing with a stake or iron knife. The aim was to prevent the deceased’s return to the world of the living, which in turn also could be done by putting a pet cat or chicken across the body. Such rituals would be carried out if the deceased was a stranger to the community, or loner or who had no one to watch over him at night. Another reason could be if the man, while alive, had been evil, thus prompting precautions against him coming back to cause mischief. In the case near Vratsa, there was apparently double insurance. This involved tying the feet to make the dead stumble if trying to return to the world of the living.

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Archaeologists Uncover “Vampire” In Plovdiv


In August Bulgarian archaeologists unearthed another Vampire burial ...

Archaeologists Uncover “Vampire” Burial In Plovdiv - Novinite.com - Sofia News Agency:
One of the skeletons had a brick in its jaws and a roof tile on its head. “This is a typical European practice between XV – XVII c. and was done to prevent the dead from turning into a vampire,” the leader of the archaeological team Elena Bozhinova said. - See more at: http://www.novinite.com/articles/162947/Archaeologists+Uncover+%E2%80%9CVampire%E2%80%9D+Burial+In+Plovdiv#sthash.A54NXycW.dpuf

Aerial Photographic Archive for Archaeology in the Middle East

Fortnight of Firsts - Flight 20141028


I was very fortunate to be invited to join the Aerial Archaeology in Jordan 2014 flying programme this year. It has been a fortnight of ‘firsts’ for me. My first visit to Jordan, first visit to a Roman site, and a my first time in a helicopter – something I am particularly proud of as one who is terrified of flying, even on commercial aeroplanes. Taking photos from the open-door side of a Huey was not something I imagined I would be able to do.

As the helicopter rose up out of Marka Air Force Base, and the view of Amman began to unfold before our eyes, my fear turned to fascination and excitement. The bird’s eye view, whether of a modern city or an archaeological site, gives a unique perspective on the connexion between the various different elements that together make up those larger networks we usually only ever see from ground level.


View of Amman © APAAME_20141028_TPH-0004

Trying to espy a site from above and then photograph it was a very rewarding experience. Undertaking the flight only increased the respect I have for the dedication David Kennedy and Robert Bewley have for recording as much of Jordan’s immense and varied archaeological treasures as they have thus far been able. No doubt this respect and gratitude is a sentiment that future generations, especially Jordanians, will share.

Of the sites we photographed two were particularly memorable for me – the recently spotted, possibly Roman, quarry with columns, under threat of being consumed by the adjacent modern quarry and Qasr el-Maduna, an imposing desert castle.

Sahab Quarry © APAAME_20141028_TPH-0010


Qasr el-Maduna © APAAME_20141028_TPH-0069

While much work goes on behind the scenes, including cataloguing photos and making them available through our Flickr page, I have also had time for a visit to Gerasa (Jerash), Azraq Oasis, and, this morning, a ground visit to an endangered Roman town, Yajuz, just outside of Amman – this is one example, yet certainly much of Jordan’s heritage is under threat. 

I have thoroughly enjoyed joining the team in Jordan, my time in Amman has been made pleasurable and stress-free thanks to the support of APAAME, the BIA (British Institute in Amman) and the Jordanians I have had the pleasure to meet with, all of whom are wonderful ambassadors for their country – much good could come of tourism to Jordan’s remarkable historical sites. As Jordan faces various challenges, hopefully the opportunities to preserve (and market) its heritage are not lost.



Research - Jordan 'Big Circles' Publicity

We are receiving a lot of hits and publicity from the Owen Jarus 'Ancient Stone Circles in Mideast Baffle Archaeologists' article published on LiveScience yesterday (30 Oct. 2014). 

DailyMail Online have also followed up with their article 'Mystery of Jordan's Big Circles: Ancient Stone Rings in the Desert have left archaeologists baffled' (Victoria Woollaston, 30 Oct. 2014).

If you are interested in accessing the original article by Prof. David Kennedy in Zeitschrift für Orient-Archäologie 6 please see our blog for publication details: Publications: Remote Sensing and ‘Big Circles’ A New Type of Prehistoric Site in Jordan and Syria 

The Syrian 'Big Circle' was discovered and investigated by Graham Phillip and Jennie Bradbury and published in the journal Levant, you can access their article through Maney Online: 'Pre-Classical Activity in the Basalt Landscape of the Homs Region, Syria: Implications for the Development of 'Sub-Optimal' Zones in the Levant During the Chalcolithic-Early Bronze Age'.

If you are interested in seeing more photographs taken in the course of our investigation of the structures on the ground and from the air, please visit our Flickr page and search for 'Big Circle'.

Circle 6
Jordan Big Circle 6. © APAAME_20090930_DLK-0263.

American School of Classical Studies in Athens: Events

ANCIENT ECONOMIES AND HOW WE CAN STUDY THEM

November 04, 2014 - 11:38 AM - Dr Makis Aperghis, Honorary Research Fellow, University College London

Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

Presentato a Paestum il Manifesto Open Data Archeologici

 

moda-manifestoSi chiama MODA il Manifesto Open Data Archeologici promosso dal Laboratorio MAPPA dell'Università di Pisa e dal Gruppo Archeo & Arte 3D della Sapienza di Roma, primo Manifesto per la promozione degli Open Data Archeologici.

Jim Davila (Paleojudaica.com)

Visiting Fellowships in Oxford: Israel in Egypt / Egypt in Israel

TIMOTHY MICHAEL LAW: Visiting Fellowships in Oxford: Israel in Egypt / Egypt in Israel: An investigation of the land of Egypt as concept and reality for Jews in Antiquity and the early medieval period.
For Jews in ancient and medieval Palestine and the Diaspora, the land of Egypt was a real place and also an abstract notion shaped by scriptural texts. The nation-defining episode of the Exodus of the Israelites, the unequivocal injunction in the Torah not to return to Egypt (Deut 17:16) and the negative attitude of biblical writers in general towards Egypt, existed in tension with the fact of Jewish residence there. Jewish settlements in Egypt ranged from the time of Jeremiah, to the Jewish military garrison in Elephantine during the Persian period, to major settlements and above all the huge urban community in Alexandria under the Ptolemies and Romans. Though all these disappear in the second century following the revolt of 115–17 CE and the extermination of the Jews of Egypt under Trajan, the presence of Jews is attested again in the fifth century by patristic writers, and then through Byzantine and Islamic rule into the medieval period, principally by the documents preserved in the Cairo Geniza.

The ‘Israel in Egypt’ project addresses a number of questions about identity and belonging among Egyptian Jews over the course of one and a half millennia.
Follow the link for further particulars and application information.

Antiquity Now

Halloween, The War of the Worlds and Why We Love Flying Machines

Happy Halloween! AntiquityNOW has been celebrating Halloween this year with blog posts about doppelgangers, the origins of tricks and treats, modern and 2,000 year old ghost stories, and now, an original short story by author Victoria Weisfeld. For inspiration Weisfeld … Continue reading

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Blog Love: Discarding Images

Because what could be better than a Tumblr that posted weird and assorted little drawings from Medieval Manuscripts?

Discarding Images

For example ...

angry bats
'Northumberland Bestiary', London ca. 1250-1260.
LA, J. Paul Getty Museum, MS. 100, fol. 37r




medieval batman
Hans Vintler, Die pluemen der tugent, Vienna 1450.
Wien, Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, cod. s. n. 12819, fol. 129r



oh hi there  
'The Dawnce of Makabre' from Carthusian miscellany, Yorkshire or Lincolnshire ca. 1460-1500.
BL, Add 37049, fol. 31v


Jim Davila (Paleojudaica.com)

Lindbeck, Elijah and the Rabbis

TALES RETOLD: Elijah's women (Caren Schnur Neile, Florida Jewish Journal).
The Talmud is the written record of the spoken conversations and questions, teachings and stories of the Sages. It documents a Jewish oral tradition that continues in one form or another to the present day.

One of the most prominent characters in Rabbinic literature is Elijah, who appears in many guises, serving as herald, mediator, adviser and teacher. According to Dr. Kristen Lindbeck at Florida Atlantic University, Elijah's duties include protecting travelers, helping those in financial distress, and devising useful stratagems.

In her book "Elijah and the Rabbis: Story and Theology," Dr. Lindbeck recounts oral Elijah tales from the Babylonian Talmud, with a few exceptions. "The Seven Good Years" first appeared in a tenth-century midrash from Israel. Like all oral narrative, every retelling is different. The following is my own, closely based on that of Dr. Lindbeck. Pay close attention to the role of the farmer's wife ...
This book was noted earlier here.

Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

Ambienti virtuali per statue 3D in alta risoluzione: MellaniuM

 

Aphrodite-MellaniuMMellaniuM 3D è una nuova applicazione web che permette di creare musei virtuali in 3D in modo accurato.

Lo studio canadese di progettazione virtuale MellaniuM ha recentemente messo a punto un processo per importare gli oggetti 3D molto dettagliati negli spazi dell'AvayaLive Engage, piattaforma virtuale basata su browser. A dimostrazione di questo processo, l'azienda ha importato due statue della statuaria classica Greca, la Venere di Milo e la Vittoria alata di Samotracia.

Jim Davila (Paleojudaica.com)

Taylor Swift and the DSS

CULTURAL ICON WATCH: Don't go breaking my heart - Taylor Swift opens up. The Dead Sea Scrolls come up in the most unexpected places:
Taylor Swift, however, is very much a big deal. Her every utterance and action is world news or at least trending on Twitter. Her lyrics are dissected by culture vultures as though they are the Dead Sea Scrolls of post-teen angst. ...

Biblica

THE JOURNAL BIBLICA, a longstanding staple of biblical studies, is online for free (for reading but not downloading) and archived back to 1979. I haven't mentioned it in years. Thanks to AWOL for the reminder.

American School of Classical Studies in Athens: Events

The Archaeology of Theoria: Landscape, Movement, and Materiality in Ancient Pilgrimage.

November 13, 2014 - 10:38 AM - Associate Professor Troels Myrup Kristensen, Aarhus University.

Stadt- und Bauforschung in Larisa am Hermos (2010-2014)

November 05, 2014 - 10:33 AM - LECTURE Prof. Dr. Turgut Saner (Istanbul)

Dorothy King (PhDiva)

Vampires and Garlic ...

Probably the only medical study of the effects of garlic on vampires:
Vampires are feared everywhere, but the Balkan region has been especially haunted. Garlic has been regarded as an effective prophylactic against vampires. We wanted to explore this alleged effect experimentally. Owing to the lack of vampires, we used leeches instead.
I use a lot of garlic in cooking. We don't keep crucifixes at home, but the garlic seems to have protected us from Vampires ... so far!

Since today is Halloween, we'll be going Vampire today with a series of posts covering everything about their archaeology.

American School of Classical Studies in Athens: Events

‘The philosophical archetype of the ship: a boat-journey to metaphors and dreams’

November 24, 2014 - 10:19 AM - Upper House Seminar Dr Chryssanthi Papadopoulou (Assistant Director, BSA)

‘Cultural homogeneity and diversity in Prepalatial Crete: New evidence from the excavation of tholos

November 10, 2014 - 10:09 AM - UPPER HOUSE SEMINAR Dr Yannis Papadatos (University of Athens)

Όπου η αρχαιολογία συνάντησε την αρχιτεκτονική.

November 04, 2014 - 10:00 AM - κύκλος ομιλιών: Ματιές στην πόλη, μεταξύ αρχιτεκτονικών και αρχαιολογικών προσεγγίσεων Καθ. Δημήτρης Φιλιππίδης, ΕΜΠ

Bryn Mawr Classical Review

2014.10.61: L'Alceste de Barcelone (P.Monts. Roca inv. 158-161). Édition, traduction et analyse contextuelle d'un poème latin conservé sur papyrus. Papyrologica Leodiensia, 3

Review of Gabriel Nocchi Macedo, L'Alceste de Barcelone (P.Monts. Roca inv. 158-161). Édition, traduction et analyse contextuelle d'un poème latin conservé sur papyrus. Papyrologica Leodiensia, 3. Liège: 2014. Pp. 214. €30.00 (pb). ISBN 9782875620415.

2014.10.60: Ovid: Epistulae ex Ponto, Book I. Cambridge Greek and Latin Classics

Review of Garth Tissol, Ovid: Epistulae ex Ponto, Book I. Cambridge Greek and Latin Classics. Cambridge; New York: 2014. Pp. ix, 191. $36.99 (pb). ISBN 9780521819589.

2014.10.59: The Oxford Anthology of Roman Literature

Review of Peter E. Knox, J. C. McKeown, The Oxford Anthology of Roman Literature. Oxford; New York: 2013. Pp. xii, 633. $35.00 (pb). ISBN 9780195395167.

2014.10.58: Between Constantinople and Rome: An Illuminated Byzantine Gospel Book (Paris gr. 54) and the Union of Churches

Review of Kathleen Maxwell, Between Constantinople and Rome: An Illuminated Byzantine Gospel Book (Paris gr. 54) and the Union of Churches. Farnham; Burlington, VT: 2014. Pp. xvi, 307; 63 p. of plates. $119.95. ISBN 9781409457442.

Thibaut Castelli (Spartokos a Lu)

Le monde romain de 70 av. J.-C. à 73 ap. J.-C. III

Quelques publications sur le même thème pour faire suite au post précédent :

Un ouvrage qui à partir de l’étude de cas d’une résidence nobiliaire s’intéresse à l’Ibérie orientale du Ier s. av. J.-C. au Ier s. ap. J.-C.. Il y a un bon résumé des relations de cette région du Caucase avec Rome.

Furtwängler, A. et al., éd. (2008) : Iberia And Rome. The Excavations of the Palace at Dedoplis Gora and the Roman Influence in the Caucasian Kingdom of Iberia, Langenweißbach.

http://iberiaandrome.wordpress.com/

Un article sur les unités auxiliaires en Mésie qui porte sur l’essentiel sur le déploiement de ces troupes avant 73 apr. J.-C. : Matei-Popescu, Fl. (2013) : « The Roman Auxiliary Units of Moesia », Il mar Nero, 8, 207-230

https://www.academia.edu/6383357/The_Roman_Auxiliary_Units_of_Moesia

 


Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

New Cultural Heritage Laws in Switzerland


It does not seem all that long ago that they revised these laws, now they are being rewritten:
Bern, 29.10.2014 - Der Bundesrat hat an seiner heutigen Sitzung beschlossen, das totalrevidierte Kulturgüterschutzgesetz auf den 1. Januar 2015 in Kraft zu setzen. Auf den gleichen Zeitpunkt tritt die Totalrevision der Kulturgüterschutzverordnung in Kraft, die der Bundesrat heute genehmigt hat. Mit der Totalrevision des Kulturgüterschutzgesetzes (KGSG) werden die rechtlichen Grundlagen auf die aktuellen Herausforderungen ausgerichtet. 
(source: Neues Kulturgüterschutzgesetz tritt am 1. Januar 2015 in Kraft). The details were not given, but let's hope they are bad news for cultural property racketeering. More disturbingly however it talks in a rather object-centred fashion of Switzerland becoming some sort of an international 'safe haven' for conflict and displaced antiquities. It is believed that this is what they already have in the depths of the Geneva Free Port.

Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

US helps fund Philippine church restoration

The US Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation has donation $300,000 for the restoration of the 400-year-old church of the Immaculate Conception in Eastern Samar province, which was damaged by last year’s typhoon Yolanda.

Immaculate Conception Church in Eastern Sama.r. Philippine Inquirer 20141030

Immaculate Conception Church in Eastern Sama.r. Philippine Inquirer 20141030

US donates $300,000 to rebuild Eastern Samar church
Philippine Inquirer, 30 October 2014

The United States embassy has donated $300,000 for the reconstruction of the centuries-old Church of the Immaculate Conception in Guiuan, Eastern Samar, destroyed nearly a year ago by Super Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan).

“Historic landmarks like this are important to the community. The US Embassy believes it is important to preserve cultural sites for future generations to enjoy,” said US Ambassador to the Philippines Philip Goldberg said in a statement Thursday.

The grant comes from the US Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) and will be implemented through a partnership between the US Embassy and the National Museum of the Philippines.

Read more: http://globalnation.inquirer.net/113703/us-donates-300000-to-rebuild-eastern-samar-church/#ixzz3Hh505Ebu
Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

Full story here.

Majapahit Museum to be built in Bali

A museum to the ancient Majapahit culture is planned to be completed in 2016, to be located in southern Bali.

Source: BeritaBali.com 20140924

Source: BeritaBali.com 20140924

Museum Majapahit Akan Dibangun di Balangan Bali
BeritaBali.com, 24 September 2014
Article is in Bahasa Indonesia

Sebuah museum yang berisi aneka koleksi benda peninggalan Kerajaan Majapahit, akan dibangun di Balangan, Badung, Bali. Selain sebagai pengingat sejarah kebesaran Kerajaan Majapahit, museum ini akan menjadi obyek wisata baru di Bali.

Museum ini nantinya akan diberi nama Museum ‘Jali Mali’, yang merupakan singkatan dari Jawa Bali Majapahit Kembali. Museum akan dibangun di atas lahan seluas 30 hektar di kawasan Balangan, Kabupaten Badung, Bali.

“Saat ini kita sudah dalam proses pengumpulan barang-barang yang akan dipajang di museum, sudah ada sekitar 30 ribu item yang sudah kita kumpulkan, mulai aneka benda purbakala, keris, tempat tidur, stempel Majapahit, lukisan, patung, batik, hingga aneka jenis perhiasan di era Majapahit,”jelas konsultan pembangunan Museum Jali Mali, Yunaini AR, kepada beritabali.com, Rabu (24/9/2014).

Full story here.

Gunung Padang excavators working out of questionable assumptions

A controversial archaeological excavation is taking place at Gunung Padang, a megalith site in Java, where the investigators are looking for evidence for a lost civilisation. The problem is, they seem to be working on a number of questionable assumptions, and the article talks about one of them – the so-called Out of Sundaland hypothesis.

Gunung Padang site, Java. Source: Jakarta Globe 20141028

Gunung Padang site, Java. Source: Jakarta Globe 20141028

‘Out of Sundaland’ Assumption Disproved
Jakarta Globe, 28 October 2014

Among the large stone structures of Gunung Padang, a megalithic site in Cianjur district, West Java, a group of scientists is searching for Indonesia’s “lost civilization” — a civilization that, according to them, pre-dates the ancient societies of Egypt and Sumeria.

The group has many critics, both in the local and international scientific communities, but they keep on digging. What makes them so optimistic about this ambitious project?

Geological studies of the site were the first clue. Carbon dating of the rock layers suggest there is an ancient building buried beneath the site that could be more than 10,000 years old. The team has turned to genetics to find the truth.

In a presentation to the World Culture Forum in Bali last year, Danny Hilman Natawidjaja, the lead researcher of the team spoke of Stephen Oppenheimer, an Oxford scientist who proposed the “Out of Sundaland” theory.

Full story here.

James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

#AARSBL App Available But Not Ready

Torrey Seland mentioned on his blog that the app for the upcoming AAR/SBL conference is available on the Apple store. There is a notice in the app that it is not yet in its final form, as data is still being added. So it is up to you whether to download it now, or wait for them to finish. But I thought I should mention it.

SBLAAR 2014

Noel Tan (The Southeast Asian Archaeology Newsblog)

Thomas Sutikna, co-discoverer of the Hobbit, continues research through Wollonggong University fellowship

A new fellowship has been set up at the University of Wollonggong, in memory of the late Mike Morwood, to continue the research into the ‘hobbit’. The first recipient of the fellowship is Thomas Sutikna, one of the co-discoverers of the astonishing find.

Thomas Sutikna. Source: The Conversation 20141030

Thomas Sutikna. Source: The Conversation 20141030

Hobbit’s world to be explored with University of Wollongong fellowship
Illawara Mercury, 28 October 2014

A decade on and the Hobbit still holds secrets
The Conversation, 30 October 2014

The University of Wollongong has created a fellowship in memory of the late archaeologist Mike Morwood, to mark 10 years since controversial papers were published proclaiming a team co-led by Prof Morwood had discovered a tiny new human species, nicknamed the “Hobbit”.

Prof Morwood’s colleague and friend, Thomas Sutikna, will be the first recipient of the Michael J. Morwood postdoctoral fellowship.

Mr Sutikna was one of the key Indonesian archaeologists involved in the original Hobbit discovery at Liang Bua, on the Indonesian island of Flores.

He will begin his fellowship next year, including continued research at Liang Bua and exploration of limestone caves elsewhere in the Indonesian archipelago.

Mr Sutikna aims to find out more about the Hobbit’s last days and to make other new discoveries.

Full stories here and here.

Locals reportedly looting shipwrecks in Quang Ngai Province

Fresh out of the underwater archaeology conference in Quang Ngai Province comes more reports of looting of shipwrecks by locals – as much as two tonnes of coins have already been removed illegally.

Source: Thanh Nien News 20141028

Source: Thanh Nien News 20141028

Vietnam salvager says ancient coins looted from shipwreck
Thanh Nien News, 28 October 2014

Around two tons of ancient coins have disappeared from a sunken boat yet to be salvaged off Quang Ngai Province on Vietnam’s central coast and locals held the blame of stealing them.

Nguyen Dang Vu, director of the province’s culture department, said many people have taken advantage of the rough weather that delayed salvaging efforts to steal from the shipwrecks at night, Tuoi Tre newspaper reported.

Archeologist Nguyen Tuan Lam from Ho Chi Minh City company Doan Anh Duong, which is hired to recover ancient boats from the province’s waters, said locals have stolen around two tons of coins from the 9th to 11th centuries from a recently-discovered boat around 100 meters off Binh Chau Commune, Binh Son District, the paper said.

Culture officials have asked the police and border guards and heighten security in the area.

Full story here.

Unclear agency jurisdictions put Philippine sites in danger

Not quite archaeology, but related. (which is in the National Museum of the Philippines’ domain). An article highlighting how competing agencies with unclear jurisdictions may be putting heritage sites in Philippines at risk.

The Army Navy Club in Manila. Source: Rappler.com 20141028

The Army Navy Club in Manila. Source: Rappler.com 20141028

PH cultural agencies in need of major overhaul?
Rappler.com, 28 October 2014

If the recent controversies regarding historical and cultural sites are any indication, national government agencies with relevant mandates are in need of a major overhaul.

This was the conclusion of certain members of the House of Representatives after a hearing on Monday, October 27.

The omnibus hearing looked into all the recent issues concerning heritage sites and culturally-important structures in Manila such as the construction of DMCI’s Torre de Manila, the development of the Army Navy Club and Admiral Hotel and another planned real estate development in the historic Santa Ana district.

The hearing was attended by real estate developers involved, heritage advocates and officials from the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP), National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and the National Museum.

The last 3 are the national government agencies mandated to protect and conserve historically and culturally-significant sites and structures all over the country.

Full story here.

Robert Consoli (Squinches)

Plants of Lake Copais



Riparian and Aquatic environments in the Lake Copais basin as reflected in Theophrastus' Enquiry into Plants, 4.10

The basin of Lake Copais has been, throughout nearly its entire history, a rich aquatic and riparian environment.[1] The basin was drained in the nineteenth century and so this environment survives only in patches around the basin and along the course of the Cephissos and the Melas rivers.

Near the springs of the Graces (πηγές των Χαρίτων). Photo from [Moustakas 2012] Fig. A-17
Instructional and non-commercial use.[2]

When Lake Copais was flooded, as it has been for most of its history, the aquatic and riparian environments provided a rich source of food and sustenance. In the late fourth or early third centuries B.C. Theophrastus, the student of Aristotle, left us a tantalizing picture of the riches to be found along the Lake and its feeder rivers.[3]

Ἐν δ᾿ οὖν τῇ λίμνῃ τῇ περὶ Ὀρχομενὸν τάδ᾿ ἐστὶ τὰ φυόμενα δένδρα καὶ ὑλήματα, ἰτέα ἐλαίαγνος σίδη κάλαμος ὅ τε αὐλητικὸς καὶ ὁ ἕτερος κύπειρον φλεὼς τύφη, ἔτι γε μήνανθος ἴκμη καὶ τὸ καλούμενον ἴπνον. ὃ γὰρ προσαγορεύουσι λέμνα τούτου τὰ πλείω καθ᾿ ὕδατός ἐστι.

“Now in the lake near Orchomenos grow the following trees and woody plants: willow, goat-willow, water-lily, reeds (both that used for making pipes and the other kind), galingale, phleos, bulrush; and also ‘moon-flower’, duckweed and the plant called marestail: as for the plant called water-chickweed the greater part of it grows under water.”[4]


Let us look at these plants in turn.


ἡ ἰτέα, Willow. This refers to either of Salix Alba (common willow) or to Salix amplexicaulis.[5]

Willow is a common building or framing material.

Herodotus refers to the use of willow to make boats.[6]

“The Armenians who live upstream from Assyria construct the ribs of the boat out of cut willow branches and stretch around them watertight skins to complete the hull.”[7]

Hippocrates advised patients to chew on willow bark to relieve pain.[8]

The Tebtunis Papyri show that the willow was cultivated in Hellenistic Egypt.[9] We are not told precisely what for but it appears to have been a valued source for fast-growing wood. Because it was planted on embankments it may have been seen as a means of ground stabilization.


ἐλαίαγνος is S. c. var. caprea [10] known commonly as pussy willow, goat’s willow, or great sallow. Theophrastus is probably not referring to the other variety of Salix caprea, namely S. c. var. sphacelata which is more at home at high altitudes. S. caprea thrives in riparian environments as

Theophrastus confirms:

“ἔστι δὲ ὁ μὲν ἐλαίαγνος φύσει μὲν θαμνῶδες καὶ παρόμοιον τοῖς ἄγνοις, φύλλον δὲ ἔχει τῷ μὲν σχήματι παραπλήσιον μαλακὸν δέ, ὥσπερ αἱ μηλέαι καὶ χνοῶδες. ἄνθος δὲ τῷ τῆς λεύκης ὅμοιον ἔλαττον· καρπὸν δὲ οὐδένα φέρει. φύεται δὲ ὁ πλεῖστος μὲν ἐπὶ τῶν πλοάδων νήσων· εἰσὶ γάρ τινες καὶ ἐνταῦθα πλοάδες, …”

“The goat-willow is of shrubby habit and like the chaste-tree: its leaf resembles that leaf in shape, but it is soft like that of the apple, and downy. The bloom is like that of the abele, but smaller, and it bears no fruit. It grows chiefly on the floating islands; …”[11]

It is a source of fodder for goats and other mammals. In some places (but this is not testified in ancient Greece) the branches can be carved into flutes. The reference to ‘floating islands’ is interesting as it implies that there were great masses of vegetation which periodically broke off from the surrounding edge of the lake or which had washed down from the Cephissos, Hyrcanus, or the Melas rivers.

σίδη, ἡ                  The water lily.  LSJ identifies this as Nymphea alba.  This is the same as the ‘nymphaia’ (νυμφαία) which Theophrastus tells us has various uses:[12]   


“..the Boeotians, who eat the fruit, call it madonaïs (μαδωνάϊν[13]). It has a large leaf which lies on the water: and it is said that it acts as a styptic if it is pounded up and put on the wound: it is also serviceable in the form of a draught for dysentery.”[14]

The family of the Nymphaeaceae include several genera among which are Nymphaea and the Nuphar. Among the Nuphar there are several genuses (sometimes these are treated as a single species in Europe where it is known as N. lutea). Among the true Nuphar a distinguishing feature is that the fruit matures above water level. Among the Nymphaea the fruit sinks below the water level after the flower closes. Leaves, roots, and seeds of some Nymphaea species are edible, and have various traditional medicinal uses.[15]


Several parts of the water lily are edible. The flowers, seeds and rhizomes are edible raw or cooked although the rhizome should be peeled. The seeds should be dried and then ground into flower. Tea
can be made from the roots and was used as a specific against diarrhea.[16] Theophrastus tells us:

“Of the plants of the lake the parts good for food are as follows: of the water-lily both the flower and the leaves are good for sheep, the young shoots for pigs, and the fruit for men”[17]

In a future post I will continue with the plants of Lake Copais.



Notes


[1] [Zaimes, et al., 2010] For the distinction between riparian and aquatic in the context of modern Greek environmental practice.

[2] [Moustakas, 2012] fig. A-17.

[3] Theophr. Enq. Plants, iv.10.1.

[4] [Hort, 1916] 361. I have separated the individual plant names in Hort’s translation with commas.

[5] See a photograph of a typical specimen here: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Salix_alba_leaves.jpg

[6] Herod. i.194, ἰτέης.

[7] Translation from [Purvis 2007] 105.

[8] Often stated but I cannot find a source for this claim.

[9] In P. Tebt. 103.195. [Hunt et al. 1933] 79, 98.

[10] A picture is available online at: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Salix_caprea8.jpg

[11] [Hort 1916] 361. Theoph. Enq. Plants., iv.10.1.

[12] Theophr. Enq. Plants. ix.13.1. “The plant called yellow water-lily is sweet: it grows in lakes and marshy places, as in the district of Orchomenus ..” [Hort 1916] 281.

[13] I find no further instance of this word in the Classical corpus.

[14] Theophr. Enq. Plants, IX.xiii.1. [Hort 1916] 283.

[15] http://eol.org/pages/60384/overview

[16] http://eol.org/data_objects/15632570

[17] Theophr. Enq. Plants. iv.10.7. [Hort 1916] 366.



Bibliography


[Hort 1916].  Theophrastus. Enquiry into Plants. Books I-V.  Translated by Arthur Hort.  Loeb Classical Library, vol. 70.  Harvard University Press, London, England. 1916.

[Hunt et al. 1933] Arthur S. Hunt, J. Gilbart Smyly.  The Tebtunis Papyri, III, i.  Humphrey Milford.  Oxford University Press, New York.  1933.

[Kontouri et al., 2012] E. Kountouri, N. Petrochilos, D. Koutsoyiannis,  Mamassis, N. Zarkadoulas, ΝA.ΝVoett, H. Hadler, P. Henning, T.ΝWillershaeuser. “A New Project of Surface Survey, Geophysical and Excavation Research of the Mycenaean Drainage Works of the North Kopais: The First Study Season” in IWA Specialized Conference on Water&Wastewater: Technologies in Ancient Civilizations.  March 22-24, 2012.  Istanbul, Turkey.

[Moustakas 2012] Sotiris, Moustakas. “Reconstruction Operation in Ancient Hydraulic Works: Area of Kopais”. National Technical University School of Civil Engineering.  Department of Water Resources and Environment.  Athens, 2012.  Online here: https://www.itia.ntua.gr/en/docinfo/1310/

[Perrin 1916] Plutarch. Lives.  Alcibiades and Coriolanus, Lysander and Sulla.  Bernadotte Perrin (tr.). Loeb Classical Library, vol. 80.  Harvard University Press, London, England. 1916.

[Purvis 2007] Andrea L. Purvis, translator.  The Landmark Herodotus. The Histories.
Robert B. Strassler, ed.  Anchor Books, Random House, New York, USA.  2007.

[Revedin et al. 2010] “Thirty thousand-year-old evidence of plant food processing” in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. USA. 107 (44): 18815-18819. Online here: http://www.pnas.org/content/107/44/18815.full?sid=ab5d3991-b37b-46f2-ad26-869b172d6006

[Zaimes et al., 2010] G. N. Zaimes, V. Iakovoglou, D. Emmanouloudis, D. Gounaridis, “Riparian Areas of Greece: Their Definition and Characteristics” in Journal of Engineering Science and Technology Review 3 (1) (2010).  176-183.

October 30, 2014

Al West (West's Meditations)

Ethnological Method

Applying the comparative method in historical linguistics is relatively straightforward and academics habitually apply it to any language they come across at some point or other. But the comparative ethnology attached to linguistic constructions isn't so straightforward or quite so reflexively applied, presumably because 'ethnology' is a word reminiscent of the nineteenth century and because there is no academic department devoted solely or even primarily to such things.
Read more »

Ancient Art

Fresco from Til Barsip (Tell Ahmar), Syria, 8th-7th centuries...





Fresco from Til Barsip (Tell Ahmar), Syria, 8th-7th centuries BC.

Courtesy of & currently located at the Louvre, France. Photos taken by Richard Mortel (edited).

Samuel Hardy (Conflict Antiquities)

‘Virtually none of them have a provenance that says where they were dug up or when’

Paul Barford noted today, amongst other items, Wayne G. Sayles’ Antiquarian e-store on V-coins offers ‘Artukid coins (from the present Turkey/Syria border area), a Byzantine coin struck in Homs (now a bombed out town) and other items from Syria, and quite a few from regions in and around modern Turkey’, but rarely displays documentation that […]

Archaeology Magazine

Three Egyptian Mummies Receive High-Tech Treatment

ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI—Experts from the Washington University School of Medicine, the Saint Louis Art Museum, and the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum at Washington University teamed up to examine three Egyptian mummies with a state-of-the-art computerized tomography (CT) scanner. One of the mummies, Henut-Wedjebu, or “singer of Amun and lady of the house,” was discovered near Thebes and dates to the reign of Amenhotep III. The recent scans reveal that she had been mummified with her brain and lungs. Small objects had been placed around her head that may be a headdress or embellishments on her shroud. “The technical sophistication of all three mummies suggests that these were well-off individuals. We would expect to see that reflected in the condition of their teeth and skeletons. The CT scan helps us to better understand their lifestyles,” Lisa Çakmak of the Saint Louis Art Museum announced at Washington University. To read about the in-depth study of a 3,000-year-old Egyptian mummy see ARCHAEOLOGY's "Priestess of Amun." 

Bullets Point to the Battle of the Ford of the Biscuits

COUNTY FERMANAGH, NORTHERN IRELAND—In 1594, a force loyal to Queen Elizabeth I was traveling to Enniskillen Castle when it was intercepted by Irish chieftain Hugh Maguire at the Arney River. It had been thought that the ensuing Battle of the Ford of the Biscuits, named for the lost English rations that floated down the river, took place at the Drumane Bridge crossing. Local people, however, remembered that this first battle of the Nine Years War took place further upstream. Archaeologists conducted a metal detector survey at the proposed meadow and found sixteenth-century armor-piercing bullets. “Up until right now, for hundreds of years, the battle was meant to be behind us about a mile and a half at Drumane and that’s what I believed as well.…But when we’ve looked at the landscape a bit better, there’s a big massive line of bog for miles along here and there’s one crossing point across that bog if you want to have dry feet, and it leads right to this little ford. What we’ve found are little bullets that are special little bullets that show us the cavalry were here, armored men,” archaeologist Paul Logue told BBC News

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Excavation works at Rathfarnham Castle uncover 17th century artefacts

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Fossilized maize, rice found in Temanggung

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Reading, Writing, Romans: The Ashmolean Latin Inscription Project (AshLI)

Did the Romans believe in ghosts?

 

The haunted house…

It was a sprawling town house that anyone would have been proud to own. But every night, the sound of clanking chains and a terrifying vision of an old man, his shaggy hair crusted with filth, woke the inhabitants. With each visitation, their terror grew until, sick with sleeplessness, they abandoned the house. It was put up for sale, but no-one would go near it. Then, one day, a man arrived in town, a man famous for his rational mind. A man who didn’t believe in ghosts.

Dr Llewelyn Morgan picks up the story with a recording he made especially for AshLI:

 (opens in new window)

The story of Athenodoros and the haunted house comes from the turn of the second century AD, in a letter from Pliny the Younger to his friend Sura (Pliny, Letters VII.27).

 

Spookily familiar

The basic story – a place is haunted by a ghost who can find no peace until its bones are found and laid to rest – is a very familiar one (The Woman in Black, Coraline, and Sleepy Hollow all rely on it). It’s also very ancient. In Homer’s Odyssey XI, Odysseus meets the ghost of his comrade Elpenor in Hades, and discovers that he’s been left behind on Circe’s island. Elpenor had rolled off the roof where he was sleeping and broken his neck, and needs a proper burial.

 

The many faces of the Roman ghost

In modern, Western culture, ghosts are often associated with this kind of unfinished business. Set against the Christian tradition of heaven and an appealing afterlife, ghosts often need to have a good reason to be hanging around on earth when they could be somewhere better.

But the Romans didn’t have just one idea about ghosts. Some, like the old man in Pliny’s story, were lemures, angry or overlooked spirits, who could cause trouble for the living. They were honoured annually with a series of feast days in May. Not surprisingly, lemures mostly appear in Latin literature (e.g. Ovid’s Fasti 5), since they tend to make good stories.

Others ghosts were members of the natural, and ever-increasing band of dead ancestors and close relatives, who functioned as guiding and protective forces in Roman daily life. These spirits, the manes, were imagined as being in or under the earth, and were celebrated with a nine-day festival, the Parentalia, in February, and were often described as gods (di). The distinction between gods and protective spirits wasn’t one which the Romans would have worried too much about.

 

‘Dis Manibus’

It’s the assembled ranks of this second type of ghost, the ancestor-spirit, which are extremely common in Latin inscriptions. Roman tombstones often open with two letters: DM, short for dis manibus – ‘To the spirits of the departed’. It’s an address to those who have gone before which alerts them that another spirit is on its way, and is commended to their care.

Even if the rest of the inscription is broken off, worn away, or downright horrible, the opening letters DM mean that we can be sure we’re dealing with a tombstone, and not some other type of inscription.

 

Tombstone of Restitutus, 2nd-3rd century AD, Ashmolean Museum ANChandler.3.79

Tombstone of Restitutus, 2nd-3rd century AD, Ashmolean Museum ANChandler.3.79

 

If we’re really lucky, the stonecutter might have included a slightly longer abbreviation, like the DIIS (this time with double ‘i’) MANIB we see on this ash-urn currently on display in the Ashmolean’s Rome gallery:

 

Ash-urn of Cornelia Thalia, c. AD 50-100, Ashmolean Museum AN2007.63, Rome Gallery

Ash-urn of Cornelia Thalia, c. AD 50-100, Ashmolean Museum AN2007.63, Rome Gallery

A toast for a ghost

One of the ways that the Romans kept the di manes happy was by making offerings. A recently deceased relative and the rest of the di manes could be honoured by pouring libations or leaving food on or near the grave.

One of the pieces that the Ashmolean Latin Inscriptions Project hopes to put on display in 2015 is a remarkable tombstone for a woman named Livia Casta. In the middle of the stone is a relief carving of a Roman cup, pierced with four holes. The stone was originally set horizontally so that Livia Casta’s relatives could pour wine, honey and water offerings into the cup, which would drain through onto her ashes where she could enjoy it. Honouring the ghosts of dead relatives and the wider band of di manes was really a question of keeping them involved, and making sure they had their share of pleasures like food and drink.

Mensa sepulchralis of Livia Casta, AD 50-100, Ashmolean Museum ANChandler3.45

Mensa sepulchralis of Livia Casta, AD 50-100, Ashmolean Museum ANChandler3.45

Did the Romans believe in ghosts?

It’s always dangerous to make generalisations about what an entire culture believed. It’s tempting to use the evidence in literature and inscriptions to draw conclusions about what the Romans thought, but plenty of people read (and write) ghost stories without necessarily being convinced about the existence of ghosts, and plenty of people ask for things to be caved on tombstones because they’re traditional. Some Romans probably believed in ghosts, and some probably didn’t. But what’s very clear is that the Romans liked the idea of ghosts, and used them in various different ways: for managing luck, for keeping family memories alive and even, just like us, for telling scary stories.

 

 

A more detailed discussion of the Latin inscriptions shown here, with full bibliographic references, will appear in the new catalogue of the Ashmolean Latin Inscriptions, which will be fr

Archaeology Magazine

Teotihuacan’s “Powder-Glittered Tunnel” Revealed

Tunnel-Teotihuacan-Pyramid-DiscoveredMEXICO CITY, MEXICO—Project director Sergio Gomez of Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History announced that his team has completed the excavation of a 340-foot-long tunnel beneath the Temple of the Plumed Serpent at Teotihuacan. The tunnel, sealed some 1,800 years ago, contained seeds, pottery, sculptures, jewelry, shells, and animal bones. Its walls had been covered with a powder made from ground metallic minerals that, when lit by a torch, created a glittering effect reminiscent of the night sky. “Because this is one of the most sacred places in all Teotihuacan, we believe that it could have been used for the rulers to acquire divine endowment allowing them to rule on the surface,” Gomez told The Telegraph. His team will now excavate the chambers at the end of the tunnel, which may hold the remains of the city’s rulers. To read about recent Mesoamerican discoveries, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "Under Mexico City." 

Ancient Peoples

Outer Coffin of Iotefamun 21st Dynasty, Third Intermediate...



Outer Coffin of Iotefamun

21st Dynasty, Third Intermediate Period

c.1070-925 BC

(Source: The Met Museum)

Open Access Archaeology

Open Access Archaeology Digest #587

Todays Open Access (free to read) Archaeology articles:

Discoveries in North-Western Wigtownshire : Cinerary and Incense-Cup Urns and Perforated Axe-Hammer; Mould for Bronze-Winged Chisel; Whetstone for Stone Axes; Cup-marked Rocks and Boulder; Apron of Moss Fibres.
http://bit.ly/1aFYcyw

The Lopez Homestead
http://bit.ly/10CvC3A

Bodiam castle, Sussex
http://bit.ly/12JViFC

New perspectives on Indo-Malaysian prehistory
http://bit.ly/1ehUdt2

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

Archaeological News on Tumblr

Archaeologists Excavate Earthquake-Devastated Roman City

Perched atop Sussita Mountain near the eastern bank of the Sea of Galilee, the city’s ruins...

Shawn Graham (Electric Archaeology)

I’m no MacGyver

I’m no MacGyver. Tim the Tool Man? Bill Nye, Science Guy? Hell, I’m nowhere near Heinz Doofenshmirtz. Or Phineas. I’d kill to be Ferb.

Wile. E. Coyote? Brain? Possibly Pinky.

I’m not handy. But I thought I could do Google Cardboard. Print out the template. Glue it to a sheet of cardboard. Cut. Fold. VR!

Tab A certainly doesn’t fit into Slot B. And how does the eyepiece, crossbrace thingy work out? A Pampers box is admittedly probably too thick for this. Sheesh. Google, go look at Ikea instructions; they are masters of the art.

As for me, I’m going back to the warm embrace of acoustic augmented reality.

Visual- meh.


Archaeology Magazine

Seven Arrested in Egypt for Excavating Ancient Temple

GIZA, EGYPT—Ahram Online reports that seven men have been arrested for digging up an ancient temple that they discovered beneath their home. The temple dates to the reign of the New Kingdom pharaoh Tuthmose III. Police have recovered a seated colossal statue, seven carved limestone blocks, and two marble columns. The area has been declared a protected archaeological site and the recovered objects have been taken to Saqqara for restoration and further study.

Archaeological News on Tumblr

Bulgarian archaeologists find skeleton of child buried with anti-vampire ritual

The skeleton of a child whose legs had been bound after death in an anti-vampire ritual has been...

Carole Raddato (Following Hadrian)

The inscription dedicated to Hadrian from the Tel Shalem arch

About a year and a half after the discovery of the bronze statue of Hadrian (see previous post here) in 1977, six fragments of a monumental Latin inscription – the largest ever found in Israel – were discovered near the camp of the Sixth Legion in Tel Shalem.

Monumental inscription from a triumphal arch dedicated to Hadrian, discovered near the camp of the Sixth Legion at Tel Shalem, Israel Museum, Jerusalem © Carole Raddato

Monumental inscription from a triumphal arch dedicated to Hadrian, discovered near the camp of the Sixth Legion at Tel Shalem, Israel Museum, Jerusalem
© Carole Raddato

The inscription, inscribed in three lines, had belonged to a large triumphal arch erected presumably in AD 136 by order of the Roman Senate to commemorate the suppression of the Bar Kokhba revolt.

A proposed reconstruction of the inscription was made in 1999 by Professor Werner Eck of the University of Cologne, a renowned scholar on Roman ancient history. According to W. Eck the inscripton reads (with the expansion of abbreviations):

Proposed restoration of the monumental inscription by W. Eck (1999)

Proposed restoration of the monumental inscription by W. Eck (1999)

Imp (eratori) Cae [s (ari) divi T] ra [iani Par-]
th [i] ci f (ilio) d [Ivi Nervae NEP (Oti) Tr] Aiano [Hadriano Aug (Usto)]
pon [t] if (i) m [ax (imo), Trib (Unicia pot (estate) XX ?, imp (eratori) I] I, co (n) s (uli) [III, p (atri) p (atriae) S (enatus) P (opulus) q (ue) R (omanus)?]

The reconstructed titulare by W. Eck precisely dates the arch. In AD 136 Hadrian accepted the title of Imperator for the 2nd time -IMP II-. If W. Eck’s reconstruction is correct then the arch was dedicated to Hadrian in honor of his victory over the Jews. Unfortunately, the end of the third line, where the dedicator was mentioned, is not preserved. However W. Eck’s reconstruction, when using the correct scale, demonstrates that only a few letters are missing after the emperor’s titles. The choice seemed quite clear for W. Eck; the letter missing were SPQR -Senātus Populusque Rōmānus- (the Senate and the People of Rome). The Senate and the People of Rome is several times attested as having honoured emperors by erecting an arch or some other large monument in the provinces to commemorate a great achievement, especially an important victory.

The impressive dimensions of the inscription – about 11 m wide – and the size of the letters – 41cm high in the first line – show that the inscription belonged to a monumental arch similar to the Arch of Titus in Rome, erected after his death to commemorate his conquest of Jerusalem.

Reconstruction drawing of the triumphal arch dedicated to Hadrian near the camp of the Sixth Legion at Tel Shalem, Israel Museum, Jerusalem

Reconstruction drawing of the triumphal arch dedicated to Hadrian near the camp of the Sixth Legion at Tel Shalem, Israel Museum, Jerusalem

Celebrations of the victory over the Bar Kokhba revolt were not confined to Judaea. Monuments commemorating the event were also set up in Rome; an inscribed slab (CIL VI 974) from the base of a colossal statue of Hadrian dedicated directly beneath the Temple of the deified Vespasian and Titus – the first destroyers of the Jews – has survived. This may indicate an attempt to link the Bar Kokhba revolt victory with Vespasian’s victory during the First Jewish–Roman War.

CIL VI 974

The name of the rebellious province of Judaea was officially changed to Syria Palaestina (chosen after the Philistines, ancient enemies of the Israelites) as further punishment of the defeated and the Jewish population expelled.

Sources:

  • Werner Eck, The bar Kokhba Revolt: The Roman Point of View , The Journal of Roman Studies, Vol. 89, (1999), pp. 76-89
  • The Israel Museum (museum link)

Filed under: Epigraphy, Hadrian, Israel, Judaea, Museum, SPQR Tagged: Hadrian, Sixth Legion

David Stuart (Maya Decipherment)

The Reading of Two Dates from the Codz Pop at Kabah, Yucatan

by David Stuart and Meghan Rubenstein, The University of Texas at Austin

A few important hieroglyphic inscriptions are known from the ruins of Kabah, Yucatan, but most of them remain poorly published, much less analyzed. The site’s lengthiest inscription comes from on the so-called Hieroglyphic Platform (2B2), and remains a disordered puzzle that has thus far eluded much in the way of interpretation (Grube 1986). The dedicatory panels from the Manos Rojas structure have been only partially documented, published and studied, and require further investigation (Carrasco and Pérez de Heredia 1996, Pérez de Heredia 1998, Graña-Behrens 2002). Perhaps the best-known inscription of Kabah comes from the well-preserved carved doorjambs on the eastern side of the so-called Codz Pop (Structure 2C6), one of the most ornately decorated buildings in the long history of Maya architecture (Figure 1, 2).

Figure 1. Structure 2C6 (the  Codz Pop) of Kabah, Yucatan (Photograph by M. Rubenstein)

Figure 1. Structure 2C6 (the Codz Pop) of Kabah, Yucatan (Photograph by M. Rubenstein)

Analyses of the date inscribed on the Codz Pop jamb have been wildly inconsistent and contradictory. Here we would like to clarify the reading of this date once and for all (we hope) as well as announce a new date from the same structure, inscribed on another door jamb recently discovered in excavations conducted by INAH in 2013. We hope that pointing to these two dates will help to refine the chronology of Kabah’s architectural history, and by extension the chronology of the Terminal Classic period in the Puuc as a whole.

The Eastern Door

With the exception of the famous western façade of the Codz Pop (Figure 1), the most reproduced image from Kabah is the set of carved doorjambs located on the eastern side of the same building (Figure 2). The stone jambs from Room 21 were first excavated, photographed, and reburied between 1934 and 1935 by Harry Pollock during his architectural survey for the Carnegie Institution of Washington. Drawings of the jambs by two different illustrators are included in Pollock’s masterwork on the architecture of the Puuc region (1980: 196, 197), and their first formal publication seems to have been in Proskouriakoff’s A Study of Classic Maya Sculpture (1950: 169, Fig 103a,b).

Figure 2. The north jamb from Room 21 (Eastern Door) of the Codz Pop, (a) detail photo by D. Stuart, (b) Drawing by M. Rubenstein.

Figure 2. The north jamb from Room 21 (Eastern Door) of the Codz Pop, (a) detail photo by D. Stuart, (b) Drawing by M. Rubenstein.

The carved jambs of Room 21 mirror each other: in the upper scene, a dance is performed, and in the lower scene, a prisoner subjugated. A horizontal hieroglyphic band separates the two events. Neither Pollock nor Proskouriakoff attempted to interpret these inscriptions.

Excavations at Kabah in the early 1990s, under the direction of Ramón Carrasco Vargas at the Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (INAH), renewed interest in the Codz Pop jambs known at the time. Carrasco and José Ligorred Perramón, the archaeologist who oversaw work at the Codz Pop, relocated them using Pollock’s reports. They also offered the first interpretation of the inscription (Carrasco et.al. 1991: 83; Carrasco and Pérez 1996: 302; Ligorred Perramón 1993: 196-97). The southern jamb, broken at the hieroglyphic band, is illegible. For the north jamb, they proposed a reading of the Calendar Round date as 2 Chuen 3 Xul (this and other dates are written in the Yucatecan system). Ligorred Perramón calculated its placement in the years 987 or 1195, but leaned toward the earlier of these based on associated ceramic and architectural data (1993:196). This would place the Long Count at 10.7.19.5.11 2 Chuen 3 Xul (March 16, 987), making for one of the very latest monument dates in all of the Maya area.

Soon after this Linda Schele and Nikolai Grube proposed a different calculation for the date on the north jamb, placing it a century earlier at 10.2.13.15.11 2 Chuen 3 Xul, in the year 883 (Schele and Grube 1995: 203). Schele’s field drawing, published alongside their analysis, seems to confirm the reading of the Calendar Round as 2 Chuen 3 Xul, but settling on an earlier position in the calendric cycle than Ligorred Perramón.

Grube, in his appendix to his overview of hieroglyphic inscriptions from northwest Yucatan (1994: 344), offered a different analysis of the date, reading the month as Muan and not as Xul. He lists the date for the jambs as 10.1.10.0.11, or October 14, 859. Daniel Graña-Behrens also noted this in his later dissertation on the Northwest Yucatan (2002: 393). Graña-Behrens does not settle on a year, however, but suggests 807, 859, or 911.

To summarize: In the short span between 1991 and 2002 no less than six(!) assessments of this inscribed date on the Codz Pop were proposed or at least considered, ranging over an almost three hundred year span: 807, 859, 883, 911, 987, or 1195. The situation raises a highly confusing and important archaeological question, and above all reveals just how little is known about the chronology of the Puuc area in the Terminal Classic period.

FIgure 3. Detail of the text on the northern jamb of Room 21. (Photograph by D. Stuart)

FIgure 3. Detail of the text on the northern jamb of Room 21. (Photograph by D. Stuart)

Here we would like to clarify that the reading of the date on the Room 21 jamb is certainly 2 Chuen 3 Muan, just as Grube and Graña-Behrens proposed. Although Schele and others had suggested Xul as the month glyph, the contours and features of the month sign clearly show it to be a bird with a –ni suffix. This can only be read as Muan (MUWAAN-ni). We can narrow this further by proposing that the two most likely placements of 2 Chuen 4 Muan in the Long Count are:

10.1.10.0.11 2 Chuen 3 Muan (October 14, 859)
10.4.2.13.11 2 Chuen 3 Muan (October 1, 911)

A placement one Calendar Round earlier, in 807, seems far too early considering other dates from buildings in this same “florescent” Puuc style. Of these two, we consider 859 to be the most likely, agreeing with the previous proposals by Grube and Graña-Behrens.

The event recorded with this date on the north jamb of Room 21 seems to be “his death” (U-KAM?-mi-ya, u kamiiy) surely in reference to the scene of a warrior being slain in the image below the text band. The text on the southern jamb of the same doorway, given further information no doubt, is unfortunately destroyed.

The Northern Door

In 2013, excavations overseen by Lourdes Toscano Hernández and Gustavo Novelo Rincón of INAH revealed two important doorjambs originally placed within the central doorway of the northern room of the Codz Pop complex. This is Room 1 of Structure 2C6. Similar to the examples from Room 21, each jamb is carved with images divided by rows of hieroglyphs. In this case, we have three scenes on the eastern jamb and three scenes on the western jamb, with a total of four bands of text separating them.

Figure 4. Text band from the jamb of the northern doorway. (Photograph by ***; Preliminary drawing by D. Stuart)

Figure 4. Text band from the jamb of the northern doorway. (Photograph by M. Rubenstein; Preliminary drawing by D. Stuart)

The upper band of the eastern jamb records a date using a variation of the Yucatecan style, where a Calendar Round is described by its position in a numbered tun within a named k’atun.

[9-CIMI] U-K’IN-ni-le tu-8-TE’-e SUUTZ’-tz’i u-ti-ya tu-4-TUUN-ni 1 a-AJAW-wa ?-cha?-ja?
[Bolon Kimi] u k’iniil tu waxak-te’ suutz’ uhtiiy tu kan tuun (ti) juun ajaw ?..aj
Nine Cimi is the day on the eighth of Zotz’, it happened in the fourth stone (year) of 1 Ahau…

1 Ahau marks a specific k’atun ending of the Maya calendar, which can only correspond to 10.3.0.0.0 1 Ahau 3 Yaxk’in. The date falls in the fourth tun of that k’atun, or in the 360 days after 10.2.4.0.0. The month position 8 Zotz’ narrows this further to one possibility (again in the Yucatecan system):

10.2.3.11.6 9 Cimi 8 Zotz (March 7, 873)

The k’atun ending recorded on this northern doorway firmly anchors its date to 873 A.D. In doing so it should affirm the placement of the eastern door’s date (in an earlier phase of the building) to 859, only fourteen years prior.

Conclusions

The new jambs from the Codz Pop show a date falling in the year 873, helping to confirm one of many previous readings of the date from the eastern door as 859. It is important to note that these two dates might conform to the overall construction sequence of the Codz Pop and its modification over time. That is, the later of the two is associated with the northern extension of the structure that appears to have been a later addition to the original building. That being said, it would be a mistake to take the two dates as simple dedication records. As noted, the eastern door records the death of Kabah’s vanquished enemy, whereas the nature of the event on northern jamb remains to be determined. Nevertheless, the anchoring of these two dates should help us be confident in the chronological placement of the Codz Pop, and of its place in the wider context of archaeology in the Puuc region.

Acknowledgements

We are most grateful to our colleagues Lourdes Toscano Hernández and Gustavo Novelo Rincón for their permission to share  our analysis of the date recently discovered at the Codz Pop complex. A more thorough study of the building’s dates and construction sequence will be produced by them at a future date. A formal presentation of the new Codz Pop jambs will take place at the upcoming Maya Meetings at UT-Austin in January.

Sources Cited

Carrasco Vargas, Ramón, et. al. 1991. Proyecto Kabah: Informe de los trabajos realizados en la temporada 1991. Tomo II. Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, Centro Regional Yucatán.

Carrasco Vargas, Ramón, and Eduardo Pérez de Heredia. 1996. “Los últimos gobernadores de Kabah.” In Eighth Palenque Round Table, 1993. M. Macri and J. McHargue, eds. pp. 297-307. San Francisco: The Pre-Columbian Art Research Institute.

Graña-Behrens, Daniel. 2002. Die Maya-Inschriften aus Nordwestyukatan, Mexiko. Thesis, Fakultät der Rheinischen-Friedrich-Wilhelms, University of Bonn.

Grube, Nikolai. 1986. Die Hieroglyphenplattform von Kabah, Yucatán, México. Mexicon Vol. VIII (1): 13-17.

_____________. 1994. “Hieroglyphic Sources for the History of Northwest Yucatan.” In Hidden Among the Hills: Maya Archaeology of the Northwest Yucatan Peninsula. H.J. Prem, ed. pp. 316-358. Acta Mesoamericana. Möckmühl: Verlag von Flemming.

Ligorred Perramón, José de Calasanz. 1993. La escultura Puuc: Análsis iconológico del Codz Pop de Kabah. Thesis, Escuela Nacional de Antropología e Historia.

Pérez de Heredia, Eduardo. 1998. El edificio de las Manos Rojas de Kabah, Yucatán: chronologia y funcionalidad. Thesis, Facultad de Ciencias Antropológicas, Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán.

Pollock, Harry Evelyn Dorr. 1980. The Puuc: an Architectural Survey of the Hill Country of Yucatan and Northern Campeche, Mexico. Cambridge: Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University.

Proskouriakoff, Tatiana. 1950. A Study of Classic Maya Sculpture. Washington, D.C.: Carnegie Institution of Washington.

Schele, Linda, and Nikolai Grube. 1995. Notebook for the XIXth Maya Hieroglyphic Workshop at Texas: Late Classic and Terminal Classic Warfare. Austin: Art Department, University of Texas.


Archaeological News on Tumblr

Tang Dynasty Coins Found in South Sumatra

Jakarta - A team of Researchers from the Palembang archaeology station said that the ancient coins...

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Open Access Journal: Alétheia - Revista de estudos sobre Antigüidade e Medievo

 [First posted in AWOL 22 May 2011. Updated 30 October 2014]

Alétheia - Revista de estudos sobre Antigüidade e Medievo
ISSN: 1983-2087
A Revista Alétheia incentiva a divulgação de trabalhos acadêmicos que abordem a Antiguidade e o Medievo, em âmbito nacional e internacional. Este periódico recebe publicações de pesquisadores de todas as áreas das Ciências Humanas, em nível de graduação e pós-graduação. Os trabalhos serão avaliados por pareceristas ad hoc, sendo veiculados de acordo com as exigências estabelecidas nas normas de publicação.

v. 9, n. 1 (2014)

Artigos

Métrica, Rítmica e Tradução das Anacreônticas PDF
C. Leonardo B. Antunes 1-11
SOCIEDADE E MITO NA TRAGÉDIA GREGA PDF
Andreza Caetano 12-22
CONSIDERAÇÕES SOBRE A CONSTRUÇÃO DA SANTIDADE FRANCISCANA NO INÍCIO DO SÉCULO XIII PDF
Victor Mariano Camacho 23-39
O HOMEM MEDIEVAL: UM PEREGRINO POR EXCELÊNCIA PDF
César Augusto da Silva Foga 40-48
CONSIDERAÇÕES SOBRE O ESPAÇO SAGRADO E MÍTICO, PAISAGEM E TERRITÓRIO NO EGITO FARAÔNICO PDF
Elian Jerônimo de Castro Junior 49-60
OS PROCESSOS DE IMPIEDADE CONTRA OS FILÓSOFOS NA ATENAS CLÁSSICA PDF
Priscilla Gontijo Leite 61-81
PARA UM ESPAÇO ALÉM DO SENSÍVEL: ACEPÇÕES FILOSÓFICAS DO HOMEM NO COSMOS EGÍPCIO PDF
Keidy Matias 82-97
CÍNTIA: A FIDES NO AMOR PDF
Roberto Arruda de Oliveira 98-109
ESPAÇO SAGRADO E ESPAÇO DOMÉSTICO: UM ESTUDO SOBRE OS TEMPLOS E AS CASAS NO ANTIGO EGITO PDF
Matheus Breno Pinto da Câmara 110-120
DIÓGENES LAÉRCIO E O ALVORECER DA FILOSOFIA PDF
Rodrigo Siqueira-Batista, Romulo Siqueira Batista 121-128
Ideias que atravessam os tempos: a recepção e a transmissão dos versos ovidianos PDF
Ana Lúcia Santos Coelho 129-141
IDENTIDADE E ALTERIDADE EM HERÓDOTO: VISÃO DE UM GREGO A RESPEITO DOS EGÍPCIOS PDF
Liliane Pessoa, Arthur Fabrício 142-159

Resenhas

RESENHA: FUNARI, P. P. A., CARVALHO, M. M., CARLAN, C., SILVA, E. C. M. (ORGS.) “HISTÓRIA MILITAR DO MUNDO ANTIGO: GUERRAS E REPRESENTAÇÕES”. SÃO PAULO: ANNABLUME, 2012. PDF
Thiago do Amaral Biazotto 160-163
LEVINSON, Bernard M. Revisão legal e renovação religiosa no antigo Israel. Tradução de Elizangela A. Soares. São Paulo: Paulus, 2011, 192 p. PDF
João Batista Ribeiro Santos 164-169

 

Vol 8, No 1 (2013)

Table of Contents

Artigos

A GUERRA ENTRE AESIRES E VANIRES: A ALIANÇA ENTRE GUERRA, MAGIA E FERTILIDADE OU AS MEMÓRIAS DE UM CONFLITO? PDF (Português (Brasil))
Munir Lutfe Ayoub 1-11
DELINEAMENTOS PARA UMA COMPREENSÃO DA CIDADE MEDIEVAL PDF (Português (Brasil))
José D'Assunção Barros 12-32
ALGUNAS CONSIDERACIONES SOBRE LA DISCREPANCIA EN LA REPRESENTACIÓN DE LA FIGURA DE NUMA EN LAS METAMORFOSIS DE OVIDIO Y EN LA HISTORIA DE ROMA DE TITO LIVIO PDF (Português (Brasil))
Guillermina Bogdan 33-43
MENDICANTES E USURÁRIOS: A POSTURA DA IGREJA DIANTE DAS TRANSFORMAÇÕES NA IDADE MÉDIA CENTRAL PDF (Português (Brasil))
Alex Aparecido Costa 44-54
SEXUALIDADE E SENTIMENTO RELIGIOSO NO PALEOLÍTICO: NARRATIVAS ELEMENTARES DE HIEROGAMIAS ENTRE AS VÊNUS E OS ANIMAIS PDF (Português (Brasil))
Flávia Regina Marquetti, Pedro Paulo Funari 55-69
INVENTANDO O INIMIGO: O DISCURSO SOBRE OS CÁTAROS NA “HISTORIA ALBIGENSIS” DE PEDRO DE VAUX-DE-CERNAY COMO ESTRATÉGIA DE UMA CONDIÇÃO CLERICAL (1198-1218) PDF (Português (Brasil))
André Marinho de Oliveira 70-91
O CONFLITO ENTRE OS ESPAÇOS EXTERNO E INTERNO NA TRAGÉDIA OS SETE CONTRA TEBAS DE ÉSQUILO PDF (Português (Brasil))
Evandro Salvador 92-100
“LE ROI EST MORT”: O DEBATE HISTORIOGRÁFICO SOBRE AS CAUSAS DA MORTE DE ALEXANDRE MAGNO NA BABILÔNIA, EM 323 A.C. PDF (Português (Brasil))
Henrique Modanez de Sant´Anna, Beatriz Aires Fernandes Cunha 101-113
UM OLHAR HISTÓRICO SOBRE A IDADE MÉDIA EM RICARDO II DE WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE (1564-1616) PDF (Português (Brasil))
Elaine Cristina Senko 114-122
O TEATRO EURIPIDIANO COMO MÍMESE CATÁRTICA PDF (Português (Brasil))
Tatielly Fernandes Silva 123-137
Αληθης Λογος: VIDA E OBRA DO FILÓSOFO PAGÃO CELSO PDF (Português (Brasil))
Carolline da Silva Soares 138-155
AMIZADE E PATRONATO: UMA ANÁLISE DA RELAÇÃO DE VELÉIO PATÉRCULO E MARCO VINÍCIO (sec. I d. C.) PDF (Português (Brasil))
Alice Maria de Souza 156-173









Ancient Peoples

Upper Part of a Statue Representing a Man Called Iker 11th-12th...



Upper Part of a Statue Representing a Man Called Iker

11th-12th Dynasty, Middle Kingdom

c.2000-1917 BC

(Source: The Met Museum)

AIA Fieldnotes

Silent Participants: The Uses of Terracotta Figurines in Non-Official Ritual

Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
Sponsored by Sponsored by the Coroplastic Studies Interest Group
Event Type (you may select more than one): 
conference
Start Date: 
Thursday, January 7, 2016 - 8:00am to Sunday, January 10, 2016 - 5:00pm

117th Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America
and the Society for Classical Studies, San Francisco, CA
January 7-10, 2016 Read more »

Location

Name: 
Erica Angliker
Call for Papers: 
yes
CFP Deadline: 
February 15, 2015

Centre for the Study of Ancient Documents

CSAD and EAGLE

On Thursday 16th October, Dr. Pietro Luizzo of the The Europeana EAGLE Project met with representatives of CSAD (Prof. Alan K. Bowman and Dr. Charles Crowther) and some of its projects (AshLI, represented by Prof. Alison Cooley of Warwick University, and Dr. Jane Masséglia) along with Prof. Byran Ward-Perkins for the Late Statues of Anquitities Project.


CSAD & EAGLE meetingCSAD & EAGLE meeting: (l-r): Dr. Jane Masséglia (AshLI), Dr. Pietro Luizzo (EAGLE), Dr. Charles Crowther (CSAD), Prof. Byran Ward-Perkins (Lasts Statues of Antiquity), Prof. Alison Cooley (AshLI),and Prof. Alan Bowman (CSAD).


The aim of the meeting was to discuss cooperation between CSAD and EAGLE's portal. Projects that will be providing metadata for EAGLE are the Ashmolean Latin Inscriptions Project (an AHRC-funded collaboration between the University of Warwick, the Ashmolean Museum and CSAD); The Corpus of Ptolemaic Inscriptions project; and Roman Inscriptions of Britian.

EpiDoc Training for CSAD Projects


Dr. Charlotte Tupman (King's College London) held a two day workshop (25-26th October) on EpiDoc for researchers of two CSAD projects: Dr. Kyriakos Savvopoulos (The Corpus of Ptolemaic Inscriptions Project), and Dr. Hannah Cornwell (The Ashmolean Latin Inscriptions Project). The workshop was held in the CSAD project room, at the Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies.

The training with enable both projects to work in collaboration with EAGLE.

Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

Open Access Monograph Series: Polymnia

[First posted in AWOL 20 May 2013, updated 30 October 2014]

Polymnia: Numismatica antica e medievale. Studi
      Polymnia: Numismatica antica e medievale. Documenti
     Polymnia: Collana di Scienze dell'Antichità. Studi di Storia romana
     Polymnia: Collana di Scienze dell'Antichità. Studi di Archeologia
     Polymnia: Collana di Scienze dell'Antichità. Studi di Filologia classica
       

    Dorothy King (PhDiva)

    Alpha TV etc

    This is still baby steps - first I made my Twitter account public, then I started to talk to press ... the world has not collapsed. Although I still don't read or watch them, and I wish more of them would emphasise that I think the archaeologists at Amphipolis are amazing and doing all the hard work, apparently Social Media 101 is to also post links, so here goes:


    Kristina Killgrove (Powered by Osteons)

    Who needs an osteologist? (Installment 19)

    Welcome back to Who needs an osteologist?  Today, we have a special fantasy-chimera edition thanks to my husband, who was recently at GitHub HQ in San Francisco for an all-company meeting.  He snapped this picture of the "skeleton" of the famous GitHub Octocat:

    Felis octocatus skeleton at GitHub headquarters

    Octocat in the flesh

    The sign below the display reads, "Octocat Skeleton. Felis octocatus.  This piece, which GitHub was lucky enough to receive from an anonymous donor, is the oldest known fossil evidence of an octocat. Carbon dating reveals the remarkably well-preserved remains to be approximately 6.3 million years old, suggesting that the evolutionary and taxonomical split between Felis silvestris and Felis octocatus gradually occurred somewhere off the coast of the South China Sea, when a constitutionally robust ancestor of octocatus ventured seaward, most likely as a result of the scarcity of rodent prey."

    Yes, this is a cute mock-up of a fake animal.  But I can still rag on it, right?  To wit:
    • Carbon dating can only go back to about 60,000 years, not 6 million.  We can't actually directly date fossils that old; we have to use the context in which they were found (e.g., rock) and we have to use other elements, like uranium, potassium, and argon.
    • Felis silvestris showed up 2 million years ago, having come from the earlier Felis lunensis (around 2.5 million years ago), so it's impossible for Felis octocatus to have diverged from F. silvestris 6 million years ago. 
    • Octopuses have no bones.
    • So, assuming the majority of the skeleton in question would be similar to a cat--domesticated or ancient--it appears that
      • Each of the five arms (yes, the Octocat is a Pentacat) is composed primarily of what look like caudal vertebrae.
      • The rudimentary body is similar to the morphology of large cervical vertebrae, I guess.
      • The nasal opening is far too small for that of a cat.
      • Unless the Octocat is part primate, as it has large, forward-facing eyes and bony orbits more similar to lemurs' and monkeys' than to cats', the eyes are wrong.
      • I'm unaware of any mammal that has bony protrusions for the ears rather than, you know, ear-holes.
    I have no artistic talent, though, so can't make a mock-up of what I think the Octocat should look like.  Anyone want to take a shot?

    And GitHub... pretty please, could you change the sign so that the C14 information is corrected? A simple substitution of "uranium" or "potassium" for "carbon" should do.  It makes me twitchy.

    ---
    Previous Installments of Who needs an osteologist?

    Peter Tompa (Cultural Property Observer)

    Warsaw-- A New Numismatic Capital for the World

    While a certain blogger might not approve of all the unprovenanced material for sale, CPO is gratified to learn that a Polish firm is conducting an auction of better quality ancient coins which is accessible through the German "Sixbid" auction platform

    Warsaw and Krackow were traditionally centers of the cosmopolitan spirit that fosters ancient coin collecting.  Then, the Nazis and Communists came, "liquidating" intellectuals and replacing that cosmopolitanism with first a racist and then a statist ideology.   And in Communist Poland, collectors were considered "speculators" or far worse.

    Happily, all that is now getting to be ancient history.

    So, let's all celebrate the fact that Warsaw now joins Beijing, London, Munich, New York, Rome and Zurich as a place where ancient coins are bought and sold openly and in abundance, fostering a renewal of cosmopolitanism for which Poland was rightly known.

    G.W. Schwendner (What's New in Papyrology)

    Geens, K., Panopolis, a Nome Capital in Egypt in the Roman and Byzantine Period (ca. AD 200-600)

    Karolien Geens, Panopolis, a Nome Capital in Egypt in the Roman and Byzantine Period (ca. AD 200-600) Leuven 2014 [= Diss. Leuven 2007], xiii & 578 pp. (28.4 Mb), ISBN: 978-94-9060-409-7.

     TOP Special Series 
    Often a PhD thesis for some reason cannot be published immediately. In the years that follow, the authors do not find the time to revise the manuscript as they wanted. This in turn causes problems because new literature appears or the evidence of new sources needs to be incorporated. As a result, the manuscript often remains unpublished and the valuable insights risk to be inaccessible and thus lost for scholarship. To prevent this, Trismegistos Online Publications have decided to open up a new 'Special Series', where valuable PhD theses or other scholarly manuscripts can be published with an ISBN number.
     Contributors can send in manuscripts in Word or PDF format to mark.depauw@arts.kuleuven.be
    The editors will consult experts about the quality of the manuscript without taking into account whether it is abreast of the most recent scholarly literature or developments. ISBN: 978-94-9060-409-7 Leuven, September 2014, reprint of the Diss. Leuven 2007 Volume I
    Acknowledgements I 

    Table of contents. II

    Introduction 1 

    Chapter 1: Sources …14 <
    1.1. Introduction …14
    1.2. A survey of monuments and archaeological sites in the region of Akhmim  …15
    1.2.1. The East bank
    A. Akhmim
    Pharaonic and Graeco-Roman remains
    Late Antique remains
    B. The Wadi Bir El-Aïn  

    C. The area of El-Khazindariya 

    1.2.2. The West bank 

    A. The ancient village of “Athribis” 

    B. The White and Red Monasteries  

    The White Monastery Monastery 

    C. Tell Edfa 

    1.2.3. The cemeteries on the East and West banks 

    A. The East bank .

    The cemetery of El-Hawawish (A). 

    a) Excavation history

    b) Typology and topography of the tombs  

    The cemetery of El-Madina (B) 

    The cemetery of El-Salamuni (C)  

    a) Excavation history

    b) Topography and typology of the tombs 

    The cemetery of Abu el-Nasr

    B. The West bank 

    The cemetery of El-Hagarsa 

    The cemetery of Athribis/Tripheion 

    a) Excavation history

    b) Topography and typology of the tombs  

    West cemetery of the White Monastery

    The cemetery of Awlad Azz

    C. Funerary objects from the Graeco-Roman cemeteries 

    Stelae 

    Sarcophagi 

    Mummy cases 

    Mummy portraits

    Funerary papyri 

    D. Conclusion.

    1.3. Documentary papyri …50

    1.3.1. General features.

    1.3.2. Late second and third century AD  

    A. Reused papyri

    B. Ostraca and isolated papyri .

    1.3.3. Fourth century 

    A. Archives

    B. P.Berl.Bork

    C. Isolated papyri 

    1.3.4. Fifth and sixth centuries 

    A. Archive of Aurelius Pachymios  

    B. Isolated papyri

    C. The archive of Flavius Dioskoros 

    1.4. Literary papyri74

    1.4.1. Classical literature 

    1.4.2. Christian literary papyri 

    A. Greek papyri 

    B. Coptic papyri

    1.4.3. The Panopolitan standard  

    1.4.4. Provenance of literary papyri 

    1.4.5. Archives

    A. The Bodmer papyri  

    B. The library of the White Monastery  

    1.5. Mummy labels …85

    1.5.1. General features: outward appearance, content and purpose  

    1.5.2. Language

    1.5.3. Date

    1.5.4. Provenance 

    A. Mummy labels with provenance indicated in the text . 

    B. Mummy labels without indication of provenance  

    1.6. Greek, Latin, Coptic inscriptions … 92

    1.6.1. General features.

    1.6.2. Dedications and records of visit 

    1.6.3. Funerary inscriptions  

    1.6.4. Other Christian inscriptions  V

    1.6.5. The monument of Ptolemagrios .

    A. Description.

    B. Date .

    C. Order of the poems 

    1.7. Pachomius and Shenoute …100

    1.7.1. Pachomius

    1.7.2. Shenoute 

    A. The “Vita Sinuthii”  

    Editions

    Biography? 

    Historical value 

    B. Shenoute’s literary corpus  

    Editions

    Canons and Discourses 

    Historical value 

    Chapter 2: A survey of the site …109

    2.1. Introduction: geography and name …109

    2.1.1. Geography

    2.1.2. Name of the city: etymological and topographical remarks

    2.2. A survey of the nome …112

    2.2.1. Situation and extent 

    2.2.2. Toparchies and pagi 

    A. Toparchies 

    B. Pagi

    2.2.3. Settlements in the Panopolite nome 

    2.3. A survey of the city …130

    2.3.1. Streets, districts and quarters. 

    2.3.2. From temple city to classical city  

    A. A temple city: the temple(s?) of Min/Pan  

    The pharaonic temple of Min (= place A)  

    The temple of Min in the Ptolemaic/Roman period (= the birba?) 

    B. Municipal public buildings  

    C. Christian urbanisation 

    2.3.3. Residential and occupational areas . 

    2.3.4. Conclusion 

    Chapter 3. Administration …143

    3.1. Introduction: urban status – defining the city …143

    3.2. The Roman period until the reign of Diocletian …145

    3.2.1. Imperial government

    3.2.2. Nome administration

    3.2.3. Administration of the metropolis before the introduction of city councils

    A. Magistracies (archai) 

    B. The koinon of the archons  

    C. Liturgies 

    3.2.4. Administration of the metropolis after the introduction of city councils 

    A. Administration of the councils  

    Prytanis/proedros 

    Syndikos 

    Archiprytanis

    B. The business of the councils 

    Internal administration of the metropolis 

    Responsibilities towards the central government  

    C. A tribal structure. 

    Amphodogrammateus, phylarchos and systates 

    Appointment of the council president  

    3.2.5. Toparchies

    3.2.6. Village administration 

    A. Komogrammateus and komarch 

    B. Presbyteroi.

    C. Police liturgists

    3.2.7 Conclusion: local variation 

    3.3. The reign of Diocletian …159

    3.3.1. Imperial government 

    3.3.2. Nome administration

    A. Tax collection.

    Reforms in tax assessment  

    The census of AD 298-303 

    New tax liturgists 

    B. Supervision of annona militaris 

    C. Other responsibilities  

    3.3.3. Diocletian’s visit to the Panopolite nome: the strategos and the town council coping 

    with an unusual situation 

    A. The revolt of L. Domitius Domitianus 

    B. Preparations for the imperial visit  

    3.3.4. Conclusion: local variation

    3.4. From the Tetrarchs until the reign of Constantine (AD 306-337) …177

    3.4.1. Imperial government. 

    3.4.2. Nome and city administration 

    A. Traditional archai  

    B. New municipal officials 

    Logistes 

    Exactor 

    Syndikos/ekdikos

    Praepositus pagi 

    C. Police officials 

    3.4.3. A new administrative structure: the pagus 

    3.4.4. Village administration  

    3.4.5. Conclusion: the character and function of the boulai in the fourth century 

    3.5. From the reign of Constantius until the end of the fourth century …184

    3.5.1. Imperial government 

    3.5.2. Nome and city administration  

    A. Leading officials  

    Logistes vs. defensor civitatis 

    Police officials

    B. Decline of the council 

    C. Tax reforms

    The village as a tax unity  

    Taxes in gold 

    The vestis militaris 

    3.6. The fifth and sixth centuries …189

    3.6.1. Imperial government. 

    3.6.2. Nome and city administration . 

    A. Traditional administrative system  

    B. New forms of control 

    Pater tes poleos.

    The role of bishops in urban politics  

    Pagarchs.

    C. Village administration. 

    Chapter 4. Socio-economic history  …195

    4.1. Social structures in the Roman period before AD 212  …195

    4.1.1. Citizenship and privileged groups. 

    A. Roman citizens 

    B. Alexandrian citizens. 

    C. Citizens of Greek cities  

    D. Metropolitain

    E. Gymnasial order. 

    4.1.2. The distribution of wealth. 

    A. Categories of land 

    B. Landholding patterns . 

    C. Landownership in the Panopolite nome . 

    Inequality and gender

    Large landowners  

    4.1.3. The political elite.

    4.1.4. Conclusion: Leading social groups in the first and second centuries 

    4.2. Social structures in the third and early fourth centuries …206

    4.2.1. The end of citizenship status and the emergence of a bouleutic class . 

    4.2.2. The distribution of wealth 

    A. Economic crisis 

    B. Landed property. 

    Land categories .

    Landholding patterns .

    Landownership in the Panopolite nome  

    a) Land tenure

    b) Work at a farm estate  

    C. Non-landed property 

    Immovable urban property: the evidence from P.Berl.Bork 

    a) Composition of P.Berl.Bork 

    b) P.Berl.Bork. as a source for the distribution of wealth 

    Slaves

    Money lending 

    4.2.3. Power and authority: the political elite. 

    A. Defining the political elite . 

    B. Councillors as the nucleus of the political elite  

    The bouleutic class: a well-defined social group  

    Composition of the councils. 

    a) Number of councillors  

    b) Admission procedure. 

    c) Profile of a councillor . 

    C. Social stratification among councillors . 

    D. Bouleutic vs. non-bouleutic elite  

    E. The burden of local prestige  

    4.2.4. The priestly elite: the family of Aurelius Ammon, scholastikos . 

    A. Ammon’s family

    B. Economic power  

    Temple income 

    Private property .

    a) Land and houses 

    b) Slaves

    C. An elite family .

    4.2.5. Conclusion: leading social groups in the third and early fourth centuries . 

    4.3. Social structures in the second half of the fourth until the sixth centuries …242

    4.3.1. The distribution of wealth . 

    A. Landholding in the fourth and first half of the fifth centuries . 

    The end of the economic power of the bouleutic elite  

    a) The burden of taxation. 

    b) The flight of the bouleutic class . 

    Changes in the pattern of landownership . 

    Economic power in the Panopolite nome (late 4th – first half of the 5th century): the 

    evidence from Shenoute

    a) The White Monastery under the leadership of Shenoute . 

    b) Shenoute’s criticism on corrupt landowners . 

    c) Shenoute’s opponents: economic and religious considerations 

    B. Mid fifth-sixth centuries: large estates and religious institutions . 

    Provincial and imperial bureaucrats  

    a) The Apion family .

    b) Landowners from the Panopolite nome 

    Religious institutions: churches and monasteries. 

    a) The White Monastery. 

    b) The monasteries of Zmin and Apa Zenobios 

    c) The guest house of Apa Dios. 

    Absentee landlords, business agents and middlemen . 

    a) Business agents 

    b) The rural oligarchy as middlemen: the evidence from Dioskoros of Aphrodito . 

    4.3.2. Power and authority in a new Christian empire  

    A. The end of the councils . 

    B. New institutions of power. 

    Geouchoi .

    The Church hierarchy 

    The provincial and imperial bureaucracy: the “Flavii”  

    a) The provincial and imperial administration . 

    b) The law court 

    4.3.3. Literary culture and power: social mobility in Late Antiquity . 

    A. Ammon and Harpokration . 

    Ammon .

    Harpokration

    B. The grammarian’s authority  

    An increased status .

    Horapollon.

    C. “Wandering Poets”: Poetry as the pathway to a provincial/imperial career  

    Pamprepius 

    Cyrus 

    D. Conclusion: social mobility, geographical mobility and networking  

    4.3.4.Conclusion: leading social groups in the fourth till sixth centuries . 

    4.4. Occupational structures in the Roman and Byzantine period …276

    4.4.1. Agriculture 

    4.4.2. The urban economy 

    A. Three sectors .

    Agriculture .

    Production and distribution  

    Services

    B. Craft specialisation. 

    C. Trade networks 

    4.4.3. Craftsmen and traders in Panopolis . 

    A. Textile industry.

    Sources for textile production . 

    Stages in textile production . 

    a) (Purple) dyeing 

    b) Weaving.

    c) Finishing touches .

    Guilds 

    The role of Panopolis as textile centre . 

    B. Gold smith’s trade 

    C. Quarrying.

    D. Shipbuilding .

    Chapter 5. Cultural and religious transformations …307

    5.1. Traditional Egyptian culture  …307

    5.1.1. Principal divinities

    A. The divine triad of Panopolis  

    Min

    a) Min as fertility god. 

    b) Min as lord of the mountains and the desert 

    c) Min as king of the gods. 

    Aperet-Isis – Isis – Triphis  

    Horus-Kolanthes.

    B. Horus 

    C. Thot and Anubis 

    D. Onomastics.

    Popular names from Egypt . 

    Popular names from the (Northern) Thebaid. 

    Popular names from the Panopolite nome . 

    5.1.2. Cult and priestly service . 

    A. Priesthoods 

    B. Cults 

    Temples and the public 

    Temple culture

    5.1.3. Burial customs and funerary beliefs  

    5.1.4. Conclusion.

    5.2. Greek culture  …329

    5.2.1. Greek civic culture: self-representation and urban identity of the bouleutic class . 

    A. Building programs . 

    B. Titles and epithets. 

    C. Panhellenic games  

    Herodotus’ account 

    a) Perseus.

    b) Games in a Greek fashion 

    Reestablishment of the games in the third century AD . 

    a) Pythian games 

    b) An Olympic agon 

    Reconstruction: and “invented tradition” 

    5.2.2. Greek education 

    A. Public education: the gymnasium  

    B. Private education  

    Stages of education: didaskalos, grammatikos and beyond . 

    Villages vs. towns .

    Literary papyri.

    Ammon as a child of Panopolis  

    a) Classical literature  

    b) A rhetorical education. 

    c) A philosophical education . 

    5.2.3. Philosophy and poetry. 

    A. Philosophy 

    B. Poetry

    Panopolis

    Thebaid.

    5.3. Traditional Egyptian culture in a hellenised context  …354

    5.3.1. Principal divinities

    A. Min/Pan.

    B. Other divinities 

    5.3.2. Funerary art.

    A. Decorated tombs. 

    B. Mummy cases.

    C. Mummy portraits. 

    5.3.3. Language and script 

    A. Demotic literature under Greek influence  

    B. Language use in the Panopolite nome  

    5.3.4. Onomastics

    A. Metropolis vs. villages. 

    B. Elite nomenclature  

    5.3.5. The garden of Ptolemagrios and the temple of Pan-Phoibos. 

    A. Religiously inspired euergetism  

    B. The garden of Ptolemagrios: a temple garden  

    C. Ptolemagrios’ generosity: the banquets of Phoibos  

    D. A humble, laborious, philosophical way of life . 

    E. Ptolemagrios as a benefactor . 

    F. Conclusion 

    5.3.6. Hellenism in the fourth and fifth centuries  

    A. Fourth century - Aurelius Ammon, priest and scholastikos 

    Temple service and Greek culture 

    Ammon’s religion 

    B. Fifth century - Flavius Horapollon: Neo-Platonic Hellenism as a vehicle for 

    Egyptian paganism . 

    Traditionalism temple service . 

    a) Neo-Platonic ecumenism 

    b) Egyptian wisdom.

    c) Pagan holy men

    d) The Hieroglyphica of Horapollon  

    From local to Egyptian past  

    5.4. Christianization …386

    5.4.1. The Christian community before the reign of Constantine . 

    A. Persecutions .

    B. Martyr cult .

    C. Parembole 

    D. The Great Oasis . 

    5.4.2. The Church from the reign of Constantine until the sixth century  

    A. Onomastics .

    B. Bishops and clergy 

    Bishop’s sees .

    Priests and deacons 

    C. Ascetism, monasticism and monastic culture 

    Hermitages .

    Cenobitic monasticism: Pachomian monasteries  

    a) “Invention” of cenobitism. 

    b) The koinonia .

    c) Pachomian monasteries in the region of Panopolis. 

    d) The Pachomian monasteries in later periods  

    (Semi-?) cenobitic monasticism: The monastery of Shenoute  

    a) Pgol and Pschoi

    b) The rise of a monastic leader . 

    c) Life in and around the White Monastery 

    d) The White Monastery in later periods 

    Other monasteries in the region of Panopolis . 

    a) The monastery of Abu el-Nasr 

    b) The monastery in the Wadi bir el-Aïn . 

    c) The parembole and the former temple of Min 

    d) Apa Zenobios and the women’s convent. 

    e) The xenodochion of Apa Dios. 

    f) The monastery of Psinabla 

    g) The monastery of Saint Psote (Psates). 

    Monasteries after the sixth century. 

    D. Christian literature. 

    5.4.3. (Non-)orthodox Christians: a pluralist Christianity 

    A. Patriarchs, councils and controversies between AD 300 and 451. 

    Disciplinary matters .

    Doctrinal matters .

    a) The Arian controversy 

    b) The Origenist controversy 

    c) The Nestorian controversy. 

    d) The Coptic Church: monophysitism 

    Origenism in the Panopolite nome . 

    Nestorianism in the Panopolite nome . 

    B. Gnosticism and Manichaeism . 

    A definition of Gnosticism  

    Gnostic and Manichaean ideas in the Panopolite region . 

    a) Zosimus the alchemist . 

    b) Gnostic texts 

    c) Shenoute against Gnosticism and Manichaeism . 

    5.4.4. Encounters between pagans and Christians in Panopolis: a conflict?. 

    A. Decline vs. continuity: Bagnall vs. Frankfurter. 

    B. The religious balance in the first half of the fourth century  

    C. The religious balance in the late fourth – early fifth century  

    Anti-pagan imperial legislation 

    Shenoute’s actions against public temples 

    a) The temple of Atripe . 

    b) The temple of Plevit 

    c) Reuse of pagan temples. 

    Shenoute’s actions against private shrines  

    a) Shenoute and Gessios . 

    b) Shenoute and the pagans of an unknown village 

    Shenoute’s invectives against pagan gods  

    Shenoute’s invectives against Greek culture. 

    Christian – pagan balance: an evaluation of Shenoute’s writings . 

    a) A world full of temples and pagans? 

    b) Crypto-paganism 

    c) A religious and socio-economic conflict

    D. Conclusion: Panopolis as a hotbed of religious conflict?. 

    Pagan religion.

    Pagan practices 

    5.4.5. Greek culture in a Christian context  

    A. Traditional education .

    B. Greek culture in Christian Panopolis 

    Cyrus 

    Nonnus 

    Conclusion … 465

    Volume II

    Bibliography … 2 

    Appendices … 79

    Litinas, N. INSCRIPTIONS OF THE CAVE "LATSIDA STON KERAMO"

    Nikos LITINAS

, INSCRIPTIONS OF THE CAVE "LATSIDA STON KERAMO"
    
Inscriptiones Creticae "Latsidae Kerami" Antri, I.Cret.LKA
 
    with a speleological presentation by Kostas Foteinakis and Kaloust Paragamian

 
    TYCHE Supplementband 8 (Englisch) 

112 Seiten | 170 x 240 mm | Softcover | EUR 55,00 | ISBN: 978-3-902976-08-6 | Erscheinungstermin: September 2014

    Overview:
The existence of ancient graffiti on the walls of caves is a rare and important discovery. The Graffiti in the cave "Latsida ston Keramo" are c. 2000 years old. The volume is the edition of a series of graffiti from a remote cave in Crete. The cave "Latsida ston Keramo" was not well known and was difficult to locate. Although there were reports of archaeological findings on the surface, no official archaeological work has ever been undertaken.
The introduction to this volume is divided into two chapters. The first one contains a collection of the described or published Greek inscriptions incised into or written  on the walls, either inside or in the entrances, of natural caves and caverns dated from the fifth century B.C. to the sixth century A.D. The second chapter is an English translation of a paper published in Greek by the speleologists K. Foteinakis and K. Paragamian in the third Pancretan Speleological Symposium. This is included as it will help the reader to understand the natural underground space and environment of the cave.
The graffiti are incised or scratched into or written on the flowstones, the walls, the stalagmites or the columns of the cave. About 40 names, masculine or feminine, appear. None of the bearers of the names can be identified with a certain person known from other Cretan inscriptions or literature. The possible origin of the identifiable names in the cave is Crete (mostly cities of the eastern Crete), but other areas, e.g. Thessaly, Boeotia and the Aegean islands, should not be excluded. Based on the internal evidence and the palaeographical details a date that could be assigned to these graffiti is from the first century B.C. until the end of the second century or early third century A.D.
The people who inscribed these names were either natives or migrants, who found themselves in this area of Crete for a certain purpose, and found a good reason to spend some time visiting this remote place. They might have been local farmers or/and shepherds or travelers or/and traders or people who were trying to escape from their social condition within the community and/or from its laws, who found shelter in this cave. If the graffiti (or some of the graffiti) are dated to the Hellenistic period in Crete, a second possibility is that all these men could have been members of a garrison or a patrol whose duty was to protect the countryside or the roads from "enemies" or "outsiders". The third possibility concerns the well-known ritual kidnapping of young boys by adults, which has been recorded by Ephorus (cited by Strabo).

Table of Contents:
    Preface - Acknowledgements
    01. Introduction -  Greek inscriptions on the walls of natural caves and cave-shelters dating from the Classical to the early Byzantine period. Speleological presentation of the cave "Latsida ston Keramo” (Kostas Foteinakis and Kaloust Paragamian)
    02. The Location of the Inscriptions in the Cave
    03. General Observations on the Inscriptions
    04. The Text-Forms
    05. Chronology
    06. Function
    07. Hands and Scribes
    08. Grammar
    09. Transcription, Translation and Commentary
    10. Bibliography
    11. Indexes
    Plates
    
Author:
Nikos Litinas is employed in the Workshop of Papyrology and Epigraphy in the Department of Philology, University of Crete. His publications vary from editions of documentary and literary papyri, ostraca and tablets to editions of notations on vessels and inscriptions. He is also a speleologist and is engaged in researching graffiti in the caves.


    Current Epigraphy

    EAGLE 2014 International Conference: The IGCyr | GVCyr corpora

    The IGCyr | GVCyr demonstration site is now available.

    The Inscriptions of Greek Cyrenaica (IGCyr) and the Greek Verse inscriptions of Cyrenaica (GVCyr) are two corpora, the first collecting all the inscriptions of Greek (VII-I centuries B.C.) Cyrenaica, the second gathering the Greek metrical texts of all periods. These new critical editions of inscriptions from Cyrenaica are part of the international project Inscriptions of Libya (InsLib), incorporating Inscriptions of Roman Tripolitania (IRT, already online), the Inscriptions of Roman Cyrenaica project (IRCyr, in preparation), and the ostraka from Bu Ngem (already available on the website Papyri.info).

    A comprehensive corpus of the inscriptions of Greek Cyrenaica is a longstanding desideratum among the scholars of the ancient world. Greek inscriptions from Archaic, Classical and Hellenistic Cyrenaica are currently scattered among many different, sometimes outdated publications, while new texts have been recently discovered and edited. For the first time all the inscriptions known to us in 2014, coming from this area of the ancient Mediterranean world, will be assembled in a single online and open access publication. An essential addition to the IGCyr and GVCyr corpora, as well as a natural outcome of the study of the inscriptions, is the planned publication of the Prosopographia Cyrenaica.

    Catherine Dobias-Lalou is the main epigraphy researcher working on these comprehensive epigraphic corpora in EpiDoc in cooperation with scholars from the University of Bologna, the University of Macerata, the University of Roma Tor Vergata, the University of Paris-Sorbonne and King’s College London. Although the edition of the inscriptions is still in progress, the team working on the project wish to share with others the structure of the publications and the research approach. For this reason three of the texts which will be published and a selected bibliography are included in the demonstration site. The website, hosted by the University of Bologna, has been developed and is maintained by the CRR-MM, Centro Risorse per la Ricerca Multimediale, University of Bologna.

    The Archaeology News Network

    Med Bourse of Archaeological Tourism starts in Paestum

    This year's Mediterranean Bourse of Archaeological Tourism in Paestum will be focusing on a wide range of issues, from smuggling of cultural artifacts in Italy to the safeguarding of cultural heritage in war zones, and will take a look at the situation of Italian archaeological missions in Jordan, Libya, Tunisia, Turkey, Iran and Pompeii. The Temple of Ceres in Paestum [Credit: ANSA]It will also look at the case of Burnum, in Croatia,...

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

    G.W. Schwendner (What's New in Papyrology)

    Choat, M, and Gardiner, I. edd., A Coptic Handbook of Ritual Power


    This volume publishes a new Coptic handbook of ritual power, comprising a complete 20 page parchment codex from the second half of the first millennium AD. It consists of an invocation including both Christian and Gnostic elements, ritual instructions, and a list of twenty-seven spells to cure demonic possession, various ailments, the effects of magic, or to bring success in love and business. The codex is not only a substantial new addition to the corpus of magical texts from Egypt, but, in its opening invocation, also provides new evidence for Sethian Gnostic thought in Coptic texts.

    A Coptic Handbook of Ritual Power is the first volume in the series The Macquarie Papyri, which will publish the papyri in the collection of the Museum of Ancient Cultures, Macquarie University (Sydney, Australia).

    New series: The Macquarie Papyri (P.Macq.)
    The Museum of Ancient Cultures at Macquarie University, Sidney, holds a small, but important collection of some 640 papyri. These are mainly Greek texts. There are also some items written in other languages and scripts, notably Demotic and Coptic (Egyptian). Most are papyri in the strictest sense, but the collection also includes a small number of items written on ostraca, parchment, and wooden tablets. Most of the texts date from the period of the third century BC to the eighth century AD.
    Private individuals are advised to order available titles direcly online, using the Brepols web shop*: www.brepols.net. If you prefer to place your order by email, please do not forget to mention the shipping address on your order, and the invoice address if that should be different. Brepols Publishers undertake to minimize costs of shipment by sending books by “non-priority mail”

    XIV+146 p., 20 colour ill., + CD, 210 x 297 mm, 2013 ISBN: 978-2-503-53170-0 Languages: Coptic, English Paperback The publication is available. Retail price: EUR 65,00 excl. tax Table of Contents
    Abbreviations
    List of Figures and Plates
    Introduction


    1. The Codex: Codicology – Palaeography, Date, and Provenance – Dialect and Orthography
    2. The Contents of the Handbook: The Invocations Text – 
      1. The Three Versions of the Invocations Text – 
      2. The Invocations Text, Sethianism, and the Practice of Ritual Power – 
      3. The List of Prescriptions – 
      4. Conspectus of Prescriptions
    Text and Translation

    1. Coptic Text and Facing Translation
    2. Continuous Translation
    Commentary
    Appendices

    1. P. Lond. Copt. I 1008 (BL MS Or. 5987) (L)

    2. P. Berl. Inv. 5527 (B)
    Bibliography
    Indices

    1. Words of Egyptian Origin
    2. 
Words of Greek Origin
    3. Proper Names and Words of Power
    4. Symbols and Abbreviations
    Plates




    Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

    A Tourist Guide to the Bakken Oil Patch

    This morning I posted a draft of the introduction and conclusion to my Tourist Guide to the Bakken Oil Patch to the online publishing site Medium. I’m just a bit excited about the experiment and will almost certainly publish drafts of the rest of the Guide to Medium over the next few days

    I used Medium, rather than my trusty WordPress blog for a number of reasons. First, it seems more suited to long form reading and while none of the individual sections of my guide are long by Archaeology of the Mediterranean World standards, they are just on the edge of tl;dr status on a typical blog. So I wondered whether the clean interface on the Medium would make it easier to read.

    More importantly than that, Medium allows readers to comment on specific paragraphs rather than just comment at the level of the blog post. This is a very helpful way of collating comments on a longer manuscript and allows readers to post their immediate gut reactions to a particular section.

    My plan is to use the comments assembled at the Medium to revise my manuscript prior to submitting it for peer-review and publication. As readers of this blog know, this project places me a wee bit outside of my traditional, academic comfort zone, so I’m particularly eager to get some feedback on how I do as a historian of North Dakota, as a commenter on our modern, industrial condition, and as an author of something more popular than scholarly (although this work has clearly academic goals).

    I intend to serialize my tourist guide over the next couple of weeks, but for this first group of posts, I have focused on my introduction and a fairly rough draft of my concluding comments. More of the tourist guide proper will follow, so please stay tuned!

    A Tourist Guide to the Bakken Oil Patch

    Table of Contents

    I. Introduction

    I.1. A Brief Industrial History of the Bakken Counties
    I.2. Practical Notes on Travel, Roads, and Weather in the Bakken
    I.3. Technical Notes and Key Terms about the Bakken
    I.4. Controversies and Concerns
    I.5. The North Dakota Man Camp Project
    I.6. Further Reading

    II. Route 1: Minot to Ross
    II1. Route 1a: Ross to White Earth

    III. Route 2: Ross to Tioga

    IV: Route 3: Tioga to Williston
    IV.1. Route 3a: Wheelock, Nession Flats, East Williston
    IV.1. Route 3b: Wildrose

    V: Route 4: Williston to Watford City

    VI: Route 5: Williston to Sidney, MT

    VII: Route 6: Watford City to New Town

    VIII. Conclusions: Industrial Tourism and Some Theoretical Reflections

     

     


    Dorothy King (PhDiva)

    Donna Yates on Christos Tsirogiannis

    Dr Donna Yates would like me to make it clear that despite repeated claims, Christos Tsirogiannis is just a student with nothing to do with the Greek Ministry of Culture. She would also like me to make it clear that she was having a private conversation on Twitter that she just happened to keep Tweeting at me even though as she herself admits my account was then set to private and she couldn't read my Tweets, which was why she was quite happy to just insult me. She has made it clear that what she said was again wrong, and that Christos Tsirogiannis has only ever made general claims of looting at Amphipolis, and that she was  being incompetent spreading propaganda with very little tangential link to reality.


    A vaguely incompetent student with a not particularly good Dr Yates seems like a rather rude way to describe Christos Tsirogiannis, but since Yates has been haranguing me to 'correct' myself, I am happy to indulge her and post her views.

    My past experience of Yates has never been particularly positive. My past experience of Tsirogiannis was a conference last year where he spoke about a sculpture I had been instrumental in getting returned after the Libyan archaeologist had tried everyone else; he kept 'correcting' me and referred me to seek guidance from "the real expert" Peter Watson. I had not until that point been aware that Watson had even had any involvement with the sculpture, but expertise surely would have been getting it back to Libya?

    Welcome to the world of people who fight looting by raising as much money as they can to go to conferences to talk about it, and who give as many versions as suit them rather than getting on with catching the looters.

    Anthropology.net

    Anthropology Deciphers the Ebola Crisis

    To the world outside that of the victims, The Ebola crisis is one of hazmat suits and anonymous bodies. However, emerging along with the voices of doctors are those of medical anthropologists, who ask for an interior perspective in dealing with the epidemic.

    West African countries are truly suffering, particularly those of Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Guinea. According to anthropologist Adia Benton, in an article by Providence Journal, numbers are most likely much higher than reported. Along with hospital counts are those bodies too weak to ever make it to a hospital and into statistics books. When assessing the impact of the virus, the “real” numbers are a good start.

    Then it is necessary to move more deeply into the cultures affected by Ebola and help medical services and disease control units provide better care. This means more culturally sensitive procedures. A prime example is discussed in an interview with medical anthropologist Barry Hewlett. Ebola protocol usually ends with loved ones in body bags and in the dirt, but biomedicine can compromise with local customs, even in times of crisis. It is not dangerous for people to see the dead, their clothes to be buried with them instead of burned, and the hands of the mourners to be washed with bleach instead of a communal pool.

    Disease and epidemic is not a new phenomena anywhere, and especially in the countries discussed. Protection is good, but biomedical procedures need to be assessed to break down what is absolutely essential and what may be adapted to help people cope with loss on their own terms.


    Filed under: Blog

    AIA Fieldnotes

    117th Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America and the Society for Classical Studies

    Sponsoring Institution/Organization: 
    Sponsored by Coroplastic Studies Interest Group
    Event Type (you may select more than one): 
    conference
    Start Date: 
    Thursday, January 7, 2016 - 8:00am to Sunday, January 10, 2016 - 5:00pm

    Terracotta figurines reveal a great deal of information about the lives, beliefs, and practices of the people who once handled them. Their study has undergone a revolutionary change, thanks in large measure to the great numbers discovered at well-excavated archaeological sites. Within such a frame figurines are now analyzed using new approaches, and one of the these that has gained attention from scholars lately is a focus on the use of figurines in rituals in varied contexts: domestic, funerary, sacred, and production. Read more »

    Location

    Name: 
    Erica Angliker
    Call for Papers: 
    yes
    CFP Deadline: 
    February 15, 2015

    Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

    US Brigadier General Urges Proper Antiquities Market Transparency

      
     "The antiquities market has always been difficult
    to regulate, even in peaceful times, but with no effective 
    law enforcement presence on the ground to discourage looting, 
    this activity is sure to continue to rob the world of some
     of its richest cultural history—while funding one of the
     world’s most abhorrent terrorist organizations".


    Now the US military is joining the academics in condemning the use of antiquities sales to finance armed aggression in the Near East: Brig. Gen. Russell D. Howard U.S. Army (retired), Jonathan Prohov and Marc Elliott,* 'How ISIS Funds Terror Through Black Market Antiquities Trade',  US Naval Institute News October 27, 2014

    The authors write that ISIS has gone far beyond traditional sources of financing, such as private donors and money laundering, which has made U.S. and coalition efforts to target illicit financing activities less effective. ISIS enjoys a diverse income stream  and that "illicit trafficking of all kinds" in "humans, weapons, and commodities, such as oil" are more reliable and profitable than foreign donor money, and make ISIS financially self-sufficient. ISIS is trafficking in art and antiquities to finance its operations is potentially capable of raising tens of millions of dollars of revenue. While exact data figures concerning this clandestine market are difficult to come by the authors stress that antiquities trafficking is now thought to be the group’s second largest source of revenue, after oil. The profits from antiquities sales may however become increasingly critical for ISIS because of actions by the U.S.-led coalition to target ISIS-controlled oil fields and refineries, and a crackdown on external sales.

    The article goes on to detail how the looting is organized (local sources: "looting is now the second-most common occupation in areas under ISIS rule"). The khums tax is mentioned. As is the seizure of memory sticks before the collapse of Mosul and the 'al-Nabuk / $36 million revenue' case gets mentioned again. See my earlier comments expressing caution on such statements and Hardy recently on the 36 million.
    These looting and trafficking operations are nothing new. Organized crime in Iraq has been profiting from the exploitation of antiquities since the early 1990s, and following the 2003 US invasion, extremist groups worked with looters to develop what became a massive illegal industry. Many of the earlier looters and trafficking networks are once again flourishing, some of which had direct ties to al Qaeda in Iraq—the group from which ISIS evolved. [...] Anecdotal evidence also indicates that ISIS is leveraging well-established organized crime networks to traffic artifacts to countries such as Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey, where the items are exchanged for cash and weapons before being sold to international buyers. In Lebanon, ISIS takes requests for specific types of antiquities that are then looted and delivered
    The 'cultural cleansing' of newly-occupied areas is another sinister but effective strategy for extremists
    These demolitions occur only after a systematic looting of the goods found inside, which allows ISIS and others both to profit from selling the valuable artifacts and to advance their brand through the media coverage of these cultural atrocities.
    There is a little bit of the military mentality here, unquestioning acceptance of what they've been told. I think however the respect that there seems to be in the US for men in uniform is a useful tool in getting the message across to the wider public. It is time do do something about the no-questions-asked antiquities market as this is not the first, nor will it be the last, time profits have been raised through it for  socially-damaging activities through illicit antiquities sales.

    Russell D. Howard is the Senior Fellow at the Monterey Institute of International Studies. Jonathan Prohov and Marc Elliott are graduate research assistants at the Monterey Terrorism Research and Education Program (MonTREP) at the Monterey Institute of International Studies. Their research on the nexus between trafficking and terrorism is sponsored by the Bradley Foundation.

    'Conflict Antiquities' in Syria and Iraq: How Much for it to be "OK" for dealers?


    "Significant questions remain,
    and continue to be raised on
    Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage
    Issues
    , but they query confusing
    evidence of  a complicated  problem,
    not the
    existence of a problem". 

    Over the past few years several of us have been discussing the use of the sales of so-called 'conflict antiquities'  to raise money to finance armed conflict in Iraq and now Syria and suggesting something needs to be done to investigate this and put a STOP to it. By and large the people that could do that, antiquities dealers, buyers and collectors, have ignored such questions and dismissed them as irrelevant. In the past few weeks however there has been an interesting shift in attitudes. The topic has suddenly become a 'hot' one with the increase in attention in the public domain on one militant group which seems to be using sale of illicit antiquities as part of its fundraising. Suddenly the dealers find themselves at a disadvantage, public attention is on the no-questions-asked trade and its links with nastier things.

    The new lobby group, the ADCAEA has varied in its approach. First they tried to ignore the issue, then dismiss it (suggesting that the militant groups were "destroying" all art and not selling it off ) and are now trying to pretend antiquities sales are in some way an "urban legend" in the making. Sam Hardy has been at the forefront of examination of the claims and counterclaims and has a well-argued piece today for those who are inclined to pay any attention to the latter sort of argument. In particular he takes issue with one of the less-observant posts ("The making of an urban legend") of the ADCAEA and ACCG/PNG/IAPN lobbyist Peter Tompa . Tompa constructs a straw man argument that the claim from an old Guardian news item that "the Islamic State has made $36m from the illicit trade in Syrian antiquities" being  "one of the main justifications for the purported need for “emergency import restrictions” on Syrian artifacts" - then contesting the $36m, apparently assuming that by doing so, he has disproven the whole alleged "myth". Tompa fails to note that several commentators, including Sam Hardy, Donna Yates and myself, have already and repeatedly questioned the veracity (as reported) of that initial statement almost from the day it was published (15th June 2014). He also seems unaware that the day following the original article, a story was published which makes it clearer what was being asserted (Ian Black, Rania Abouzeid, Mark Tran, Shiraz Maher, Roger Tooth and Martin Chulov 'The terrifying rise of Isis: $2bn in loot, online killings and an army on the run', The Guardian, Monday 16 June 2014 - see my discussion here).  In any case, as Dr Hardy points out:
    "Whether or not the Islamic State has made thirty-six million dollars, whether or not the Islamic State even exists, makes no difference whatsoever. But obliteration of communities’ pasts and funding of organised crime are also justifications for general trading controls"
    Mr Tompa will have to try harder than that and address all manner of other material before so lightly dismissing what we are hearing from people on the ground. The reader can refer to Sam's excellent piece refuting Tompa  for the details is they think it worth the bother of to pay any heed at all to what dealers' lobbyists say.

    I'd draw attention here to two other points made by Dr Hardy. He stresses that despite the concentration of the western media on demonization of one particular group to emerge from the post-2003 rubble of Iraq all parties ("apart from, perhaps, the Kurds") are profiting from illicit antiquities.
    The Islamic State’s illicit antiquities income is somewhat more troublesome than other armed groups’ cultural racketeering, because the Islamic State is committing genocide. [...] the ‘extremist group known as ISIS is one of a number of actors turning antiquities into guns pointed at Syria’s own people.’ 
    The other point is a parallel to our refrain about the Heritage action Artefact erosion Counter, every metal detectorist in the UK will tell you - never adducing a scrap of meaningful evidence to say why - that it is "wrong" (suggesting: "it is a lie"). My response to that is to ask by how much it would have to be 'wrong' from the situation to be acceptable. There has never been an answer to that question. Hardy asks the same about Near Eastern antiquities:
    as I’ve asked before, would collectors and dealers be reassured if the Islamic State taxed illicit sales rather than sold illicit antiquities, or if illicit purchases had funded the Assad regime rather than the Islamic State? [....] I explicitly stated in the Reuters piece that how much material had been looted was not known, and how much profit had been made by paramilitaries was not known. But a lot has been looted and a lot of money has been made. How much would need to be looted, and how much money would have to be made by which paramilitaries, for the Cultural Property Observer to accept the genuine need for antiquities import restrictions? 
    I suspect that is another question that will remain unanswered.  

    Joseph Manning (The Ancient Historian)

    In the Crucible of Empire: Revolts and Resistance in the Ancient World

    I am co-hosting today, with John Collins of the Yale Divinity School, and tomorrow here at Yale, on the new West Campus Conference facility, a small conference the idea for which emerged out of a co-taught graduate seminar a couple of years ago. We meant it to be small and casual, but we have a great line up of people and topics. Will be really fun and enlightening, and no doubt some lively debate will happen

     

    image002


    Archaeological News on Tumblr

    Ancient Stone Circles Leave Archaeologists Puzzled

    Huge stone circles in the Middle East have been imaged from above, revealing details of structures...

    Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

    Open Access Monograph Series: Trismegistos Online Publications Special Series (TOP SS)

    Trismegistos Online Publications Special Series (TOP SS)
    Often a PhD thesis for some reason cannot be published immediately. In the years that follow, the authors do not find the time to revise the manuscript as they wanted. This in turn causes problems because new literature appears or the evidence of new sources needs to be incorporated. As a result, the manuscript often remains unpublished and the valuable insights risk to be inaccessible and thus lost for scholarship.
    To prevent this, Trismegistos Online Publications have decided to open up a new 'Special Series', where valuable PhD theses or other scholarly manuscripts can be published with an ISBN number.
    Contributors can send in manuscripts in Word or PDF format to mark.depauw@arts.kuleuven.be. The editor will consult experts about the quality of the manuscript without taking into account whether it is abreast of recent scholarly literature or developments.

    TOP SS 1 forthcoming (Click to download) K. Geens
    Panopolis, a Nome Capital in Egypt in the Roman and Byzantine Period (ca. AD 200-600)
    Leuven 2014 [= Diss. Leuven 2007], xiii & 578 pp. (28.4 Mb).
    ISBN: 978-94-9060-409-7

    Archaeological News on Tumblr

    Looters raid Jordanian crypts in search of gold, jewels and artifacts

    UMM EL-JIMAL, Jordan — The tomb-raiders no longer even wait for night to fall before they loot the...

    Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

    More Careless Syrian Coin Listings in America



    At an MOU hearing in Washington not long ago, Wayne Sayles clearly told the CPAC that he was not a dealer - as he had retired at the end of 2011 ( PACHI Wednesday, 21 March 2012, 'Sayles Suspends Sales'). This was after apparently discovering the previous year that he might be on some kind of HSI "watch list" ('Is ACCG Director on a watch list?', PACHI Saturday, 20 March 2010). Then he came back, without Mr Lavenderand started a new website. Until recently it was interesting to note that we did not find him on the V-Coins portal. Until now that is. Sayles is back, not only as a dealer, but as a V-coins seller:
    Dear Friend in Numismatics: (yuk!) We are very pleased to rejoin the VCoins family of dealers as we celebrate our 50th year in professional numismatics. It's been a wonderful experience and our association with VCoins goes back many years—virtually to its beginning. We are presently building this new store to include offerings from our independent WGS web site and from our vast stock of ancient coins and related materials presently not offered online. 
    The stock shown currently includes Artukid coins (from the present Turkey/Syria border area), a Byzantine coin struck in Homs (now a bombed out town) and other items from Syria, and quite a few from regions in and around modern Turkey (see 'ADCAEA Officer: "Boycott Turkish Antiquities"). Very few of them (and of those on the main WGS site) have much of a collecting history to speak of up front.Why is it that anyone putting up artefacts traceable to the war-torn regions of the Middle East precisely right now would not be going the extra mile to show that anyone who looks that they are of wholly licit provenance? Do coin dealers like Mr Sayles simply not care about the image they are projecting of their trade?

    Please note, showing my readers what a dealer is doing is in no way an "endorsement" of the site, the portal, its proprietors or anything else to do with the opacities of the trade in dugup antiquities or the verbal chicanery of those involved in and supporting it (Cf 'Wayne Sayles: "Archaeologist Barford endorses WGS Store". Ummm, is that what I say?' Sunday, 25 November 2012  and also see: 'Intellectual landscapes and Honesty in the Coin Trade' Saturday, 1 December 2012).

    Dorothy King (PhDiva)

    Praise From Someone I Respect

    My attitude to press and the internet is that it's better to ignore praise as well as condemnation, as both can drive you mad.

    Yes, I looked a mess on Alpha TV as I've been ill and have a temperature, but I'm not vain enough to care. But I did try to 'pull myself together' as best I could in the twenty minutes between being told it was video not a phone call, and recording the segment - because I am vain enough to do that, didn't want to scare the viewers, and doing so is a common courtesy.

    What I do appreciate is praise from someone I respect, and Adrian was kind enough to read the first few sections of the book. It's the first feed-back I've received, so I'm over the moon!


    ASOR Blog (American Schools of Oriental Research)

    Continuity & Discontinuity in the LB IIB/Iron I Transition

    A Study of Glyptic Technology and Iconography

    10-Laura-Wright-blogBy: Laura Wright, Johns Hopkins University
    Educational and Cultural Affairs Fellow

    During the … Read more

    David Meadows (rogueclassicism)

    RepiTitiationes ~ 10/29/14

    Yesterday in the Classical Blogo-twittersphere …


    Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

    Sayles: "Archaeologists and Museums may be Involved in Syrian and Iraqi Artefact Smuggling"


    Dugup antiquities dealer Wayne Sayles of the Ancient Coin Collectors Guild seems to support the idea that looted artefacts from Syria and Iraq are reaching western markets. He has published without comment on his "Ancient Coins" blog the remarks of one English collector who suggests (on what evidence is unclear) that Syrians and Iraqi locals are digging up the antiquities and "getting them out to collectors with the full approval of certain archaeologists and museum experts eager to provide provenances and to smooth their path to safety in the West", thus "rescuing" them. If freshly dugup antiquities on entering the market are being supplied with false provenances as suggested on Sayles' blog, all the more reason for there to be the most rigorous of due diligence accompanying each and every transaction of ancient objects.On the other hand, if Mr Sayles is publishing false information in order to be provocative, it is yet another example of the extent to which he and the pathetic group he heads are alienating themselves from the heritage debate.

    Vignette: ISIS coin, ex  Wayne Sayles

    Jim Davila (Paleojudaica.com)

    Punic shipwreck

    PUNIC WATCH: Archaeologists Recover Artifacts from 2,200-Year-Old Roman Shipwreck (Sci-News.com).
    Italian archaeologists and divers from a Florida-based group called Global Underwater Explorers (GUE) have recovered a wide range of artifacts from an ancient shipwreck in the Mediterranean Sea, off the Aeolian Island of Panarea near Italy.

    The ship, dubbed Panarea III, is believed to have sailed around 218-210 BC, during the Second Punic War between Rome and Carthage.

    [...]
    On board were lots of interesting artifacts, including a vessel bearing a Greek inscription, which the excavators think was used as a sacrificial altar. Also the Daily Mail has an AP article on the discovery here with more photographs and a video.

    More on the Punic Wars here and links. Note also that the discover of a somewhat older Phoenician shipwreck was announced last summer.

    Dorothy King (PhDiva)

    Postgraduate Certificate Program in Art Crime and Cultural Heritage Protection

    The early application period for the 2015 Postgraduate Certificate Program in Art Crime and Cultural Heritage Protection is open through November 15, 2014.

    Can you help us spread the word by forwarding the attached 2015 prospectus to persons interested in this field?


    For a detailed prospectus and information on the application process interested individuals should contact us at: education@artcrimeresearch.org

    The Association for Research into Crimes against Art (ARCA) 2014 Postgraduate Certificate Program in International Art Crime and Cultural Heritage Protection program will be held from May 29 through August 15, 2014 in the heart of Umbria in Amelia, Italy.

    In its seventh year, this academically intensive ten week program provides in-depth, postgraduate level instruction in a wide variety of theoretical and practical elements related to art and heritage crime. By examining art crime’s interconnected world, students experience an integrated curriculum in an interactive, participatory setting. The programs' courses include comprehensive multidisciplinary lectures, class discussions and presentations as well as field classes, which serve as the backdrop for exploring art crime, its nature, and impact. 

    Each course associated with the program has been selected to underscore the value of, and necessity for, a longitudinal multidisciplinary approach to the study of this type of criminal behavior and enterprise.

    This program has been designed to expose participants to an integrated curriculum occurring in a highly interactive, participatory, student-centered setting. Instructional modules include both lectures and “hands-on” learning in the form of case studies, presentations, in situ field classes and group discussions. At the end of the program, participants will have a solid mastery of a broad array of concepts pertaining to cultural property protection, preservation, conservation, and security.

    Students explore such topics as:

                    art crime and its history
                    art and heritage law
                    criminology
                    art crime in war
                    the art trade
                    art insurance
                    museum security
                    law enforcement methods
                    archaeological looting and policy
                    heritage looting
                    art forgery

    Target:

    This interdisciplinary program offers substantive study for post-graduate students of criminology, law, security studies, sociology, art history, archaeology, and history as well as art police and security professionals, lawyers, insurers, curators, conservators, members of the art trade.

    Important Dates

    November 15, 2014 - Early Application Deadline
    January 01, 2015 - General Application Deadline
    February 01, 2014 - Late Application Deadline
    April 2015 - Advance Reading Assigned
    May 29, 2015 - Students Arrive in Italy
    May 30031, 2015 - Program Orientation
    June 1, 2015 - Classes Begin
    August 7, 2015 - Classes End
    August 8-15, 2015 - Students Housing Check-out **
    Nov. 15, 2015 -Thesis Submission Deadline

    **Some students stay a few days to one week longer to participate in the August Palio dei Colombi, Notte Bianca and Ferragosto festivities.

    For
    ​a copy of the prospectus or ​
    questions about programming, costs, and census availability, please write to us at:  education@artcrimeresearch.org

    Jim Davila (Paleojudaica.com)

    New director of the IAA

    POLITICS: Israel Antiquities Authority taps politician with ties to rightist NGO
    Kadima’s Israel Hasson has links to Elad, which administers the City of David archaeological site in Jerusalem's Silwan neighborhood.
    (Nir Hasson, Haaretz).
    The Israel Antiquities Authority has tapped the Kadima party’s Israel Hasson to be its next director — a politician controversial for his ties to the Elad NGO that encourages Jews to move to the Silwan neighborhood in Arab East Jerusalem.

    Hasson has been approved by the authority’s board on the recommendation of Culture and Sports Minister Limor Livnat. The appointment, which archaeologists have criticized due to Hasson’s lack of experience in the field, still needs the approval of the Civil Service Commission and the cabinet.

    The director’s post is a powerful one when it comes to archeological digs around the country, not to mention the preservation and research of Israel’s archaeological heritage.

    Hasson has served both as a deputy director of the Shin Bet security service and as a Knesset member for Kadima. He would succeed Shuka Dorfman, who died in July. A number of leading archaeologists vied for the post but were rejected.

    [...]
    Background on the search for a new IAA director is here. And there's lots more on Elad here, here, and links.

    Farrago

    Homer's birthplace: 'a well-known epigram'

    A.C. Price quotes an epigram in 'Introduction:
    § 1. History of the Poems' in his edition of Iliad 21 (CUP. 1921: 5).

    'A well-known epigram runs thus:

    ἑπτὰ πόλεις διερίζουσιν περὶ ῥίζαν Ὁμήρου
    Σμύρνα, ῾Ρόδος, Κολόφων, Σαλαμίν, Ἴος, Ἄργος, Ἀθῆναι,

    but at least twenty cites claimed Homer has their own.'

    This epigram cannot be found through the TLG, but LSJ s.v. διερίζω notes 'interpol. in Epigr. in Gell.3.11'.

    Aulus Gellius, Noctes Atticae 3.11.6-7 reads:
    De patria quoque Homeri multo maxime dissensum est. Alii Colophonium, alii Smyrnaeum, sunt qui Atheniensem, sunt etiam qui Aegyptium fuisse dicant, Aristoteles tradidit ex insula Io. M. Varro in libro de imaginibus primo Homeri imagini epigramma hoc apposuit: 
    capella Homeri candida haec tumulum indicat, 
    quod hac Ietae mortuo faciunt sacra.

    The OCT app.crit. makes no mention of this interpolation, but thanks to the wonders of Googlebooks, it can be seen in an eighteeneth-century translation.

    For Ios, see Anth.7.2 (Antipater of Sidon). 

    Jim Davila (Paleojudaica.com)

    DSS replica plus Gabriel Revelation in Hong Kong

    EXHIBITION: Hong Kong to get a glimpse of largest of the historic Dead Sea Scrolls (Elizabeth Cheung, South China Morning Post).
    A copy of the largest of the Dead Sea Scrolls, some of the oldest and most significant texts ever discovered, will go on display in Hong Kong next week, alongside the Gabriel Revelation Stone, often called the “stone scroll”.

    The Great Scroll of Isaiah, which is 734cm long, is the largest and most complete of the seven Dead Sea Scrolls which were discovered in caves near the West Bank, next to the Dead Sea, in 1947.

    The scroll, written in Hebrew, contains the entire 66 chapters of the Book of Isaiah.

    Dating from between 120BC and 100BC, the scroll is considered to be one of the oldest of those discovered. “The Great Isaiah Scroll conveys the importance of the prophet Isaiah in Jewish belief and is 1,000 years older than the oldest manuscripts in the Hebrew Bible,” said Dr Adolfo Roitman, an Israeli expert on the scrolls.

    While the original scroll is kept in Israel, a copy will be displayed in Hong Kong.

    [...]
    More on the Isaiah Scroll and its replicas is here and links. And there's lots more on the Gabriel Revelation (formerly, the Vision of Gabriel) here and links.

    Farrago

    Linguistic Landscaping to the detriment of the people

    The emperor Gaius Caligula published his laws so as to be illegible. For whom (for whose benefit) was this 'sign' written ?

    eius modi vectigalibus indictis neque propositis, cum per ignorantiam scripturae multa commissa fierent, tandem flagitante populo proposuit quidem legem, sed et minutissimis litteris et angustissimo loco, uti ne cui describere liceret.

    When taxes of this kind had been proclaimed, but not published in writing, inasmuch as many offences were committed through ignorance of the letter of the law, he at last, on the urgent demand of the people, had the law posted up, but in a very narrow place and in excessively small letters, to prevent the making of a copy.

    Antiquity Now

    The Colorful Past of Halloween Treats

    Lads, look at yourselves. Why are you, boy, wearing that Skull face? And you, boy, carrying a scythe, and you, lad, made up like a Witch? And you, you, you!” He thrust his bony finger at each mask. “You don’t … Continue reading

    Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

    Nuove applicazioni di realtà aumentata nei siti archeologici di Cipro

    ricostruzione-eta-bronzoUna nuova applicazione offrirà uno sguardo alla vita di anitche città più di 3000 anni fa. Alcuni archeologi dell'University of British Columbia (UBC) stanno lavorando tra le rovine dell'isola di Cipro sviluppando una nuova applicazione mobile che consente agli utenti un tour tra le rovine dell'età de Bronzo e osservare ricostruiti gli edifici della città antica.

    Bryn Mawr Classical Review

    2014.10.57: Christianisme et philosophie: les premières confrontations (Ier-VIe siècle). Série "Antiquité" 33333

    Review of Sébastien Morlet, Christianisme et philosophie: les premières confrontations (Ier-VIe siècle). Série "Antiquité" 33333. Paris: 2014. Pp. 260. €7.10 (pb). ISBN 9782253156505.

    2014.10.56: Mithräischen Steindekmäler aus Dakien

    Review of Gabriel Sicoe, Mithräischen Steindekmäler aus Dakien​. Cluj Napoca: 2014. Pp. 338. ISBN 9786065434974.

    2014.10.55: Beperkt? Gehandicapten in het Romeinse Rijk

    Review of Christian Laes, Beperkt? Gehandicapten in het Romeinse Rijk. Leuven: 2014. Pp. 297. €29.95 (pb). ISBN 9789059085244.

    2014.10.54: Approaches to the Byzantine Family. Birmingham Byzantine and Ottoman studies

    Review of Leslie Brubaker, Shaun Tougher, Approaches to the Byzantine Family. Birmingham Byzantine and Ottoman studies. Farnham; London; Burlington, VT: 2013. Pp. 446. $124.95. ISBN 9781409411581.

    Thibaut Castelli (Spartokos a Lu)

    Épigrammes grecs des terres bulgares.

    Mihailov, G. (1943) : Гръцките епиграми от българските земи / Gräckite epigrami ot bälgarskite zemi, Sofia, [Épigrammes grecs des terres bulgares].
    Cet ouvrage ancien maintenant publie et commente rapidement les poèmes laissés pour les vivants par les morts. Il regroupe les inscriptions du Pont Gauche d’Istros à Apollonia et de Bulgarie, ainsi que celle de Thasos. Il fut publié à l’origine comme un article en deux parties dans les numéros de la revue Годишник на Софийския университет. Историко-филологически факултет de 1942-1943 et de 1943-1944. De très nombreux index facilitent la recherche.
    L’édition en ligne est incomplète : il manque une quinzaine de pages.

    Le livre en ligne :

    http://kkf.proclassics.org/documents/Mihailov_Epigrami_izvadki.pdf


    Larry Rothfield (The Punching Bag)

    Scathing critique of UNESCO's ineffectual response to Syrian crisis

    Michel al-Maqdissi, former director of the Syrian Directorate General of Antiquities and Museums' Archaeological Excavations department, points out the ways in which UNESCO has failed to go beyond the traditional list of UNESCO measures to do more than what it traditionally does (i.e., training customs officials, putting monuments that are already damaged on the "threatened" list) -- and does, Maqdissi notes, too little too late. The article is interesting throughout, but for me the following points stood out:

    -- Qatna-Mishirfeh, a famous site, has not been looted. Maqdissi says this is because it is too famous and people would know, but he also notes that "in contrast to other sites, Qatna-Mishirfeh is still being guarded."

    --the majority of looters are professionals working in gangs that learned their trade in Iraq. 

    -- it does not make economic sense for armed groups to go into the antiquities trade, since it is not a quick business and rebels need money fast. (This is true, but if the gangs are being taxed, as reports have suggested, then rebels can milk the trade, assuming the gangs are adequately capitalized to be able to retain inventory as we know they have done with the massive amounts looted in Iraq from 2004-2006.)

    -- UNESCO has been training the staff of the General Directorate of Antiquities and Museums but not the activist groups engaged directly in trying to protect sites and museums.

    -- Nor is UNESCO thinking about ways to get Syria's site guards paid:
    Traditionally, the guards are paid by the Syrian government and by foreign archaeological missions, which usually brought the money into the country themselves. 
    For more than three years now, foreigners have stayed away. I have tried to help by picking up the money personally at foreign institutions and sending it from Lebanon to trustworthy Syrians, who gave it to the Directorate of Antiquities so that the guards' wages can be paid for another year. But that only helped a small number of the guards. According to my estimates, 30 to 40 per cent of them no longer receive any money. The sites of the ancient trading city of Mari-Tell Hariri, for example, are currently being guarded by overburdened villagers.
    It would be interesting to take a look at UNESCO's budget to see how much has been spent on its international meetings and on conservation training, and to ask how many sites would have been saved from looters had the funds instead gone to pay site guards' salaries. But that's an academic question, since as Maqdissi says, UNESCO's bureaucracy is very entrenched -- including, notably, the experts whose expertise is not in guarding but in conserving -- , making it almost impossible to redirect resources.
    And one can see why paying for site guards might open a can of worms for UNESCO. The World Heritage Fund's annual assistance budget for the entire world is only $4 million, and while Syria's situation is perhaps the most desperate, there are many, many countries lacking the money to pay for enough site guards. 
    So where is the money to come from? One answer, laid out by Mounir Bouchenaki in his contribution to Antiquities Under Siege, might be actually funding the Intergovernmental Fund for the Protection of Cultural Property in Times of Conflict, established but (to my knowledge) never actually contributed to by any state party. 
    Don't hold your breath on that happening any time soon. It would take leadership from the US, which sends John Kerry to talk loftily at the Metropolitan Museum about the need to do something to stop the looting of sites in Syria but whose policy moves have been limited to helping document the damage. 
    There are, to be sure, other funding sources in the world aside from governments and foreign archaeological missions. One could imagine, for instance, the antiquities dealers associations, museum directors' associations, and a phalanx of ultra-wealthy enlightened collectors, all led perhaps by James Cuno, coming together to set up their own fund. Or, better still, lobbying the governments of major collecting nations to set up funds and generate the revenues to go into those funds via a tax on antiquities sales. 
    Wouldn't that be great?



    Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

    Giza men arrested after digging up ancient temple under house


    This is quite an intriguing story:
    Seven residents of a Giza district have been arrested after they illegally excavated the area beneath their home and found the remains of an ancient Egyptian temple. The huge limestone blocks, engraved with hieroglyphic texts, date from the reign of the New Kingdom's King Tuthmose III, and were found in the Hod Zeleikha area of Al-Badrasheen district. [...] The find was made two weeks ago, [...] A unit from the tourism and antiquities police heard of the illegal excavation work and arrested the seven men – two of whom are Palestinian [...] The police also found diving costumes, oxygen cylinders and diving masks with the detainees.
    It seems some of the recovered remains came from "nine metres below ground water levels". So this is not exactly the work of desperately poor subsistence diggers, but organized looting profiting from the ability to turned ancient sculpted stone into cash no questions asked on the antiquities market. Presumably some form of shoring must have been used to stop immediate collapse of the house - also of course the removal of tonnes of earth from under a single building would have tended to attract the attention of the neighbours....

    Source:
    Nevine El-Aref, 'Giza men arrested after digging up ancient temple under house, Al Ahram Wednesday 29 Oct 2014.

     

    Laura Gibbs (Bestiaria Latina Blog)

    Latin Proverbs and Fables Round-Up: October 30

    Here is a round-up of today's proverbs and fables - and for previous posts, check out the Bestiaria Latina Blog archives. If you are looking for more fables to read (LOTS more fables), you can download a free PDF copy of Mille Fabulae et Una: 1001 Aesop's Fables in Latin.

    HODIE (Roman Calendar): ante diem tertium Kalendas Novembres.

    MYTHS and LEGENDS: The art image for today's legend shows Orpheus and the Animals; you can also see the legends for the current week listed together here.


    TODAY'S MOTTOES and PROVERBS:

    3-WORD MOTTOES: Today's 3-word motto is Timor omnis abesto (English: Away with all fear).

    3-WORD PROVERBS: Today's 3-word proverb is Actum ne agas (English: Don't do something that's been done).

    RHYMING PROVERBS: Today's proverb with rhyme is: Omnia transibunt! Sic ibimus, ibitis, ibunt (English: All things will pass away! So we will go, you will go, they will go).

    VULGATE VERSES: Today's verse is Tu quid iudicas fratrem tuum? (Romans 14:10). For a translation, check out the polyglot Bible, in English, Hebrew, Latin and Greek, at the Sacred Texts Archive online.

    ELIZABETHAN PROVERBS: Here is today's proverb commentary, this time by Taverner: Nemo mortalium omnibus horis sapit: No man in the world is wise at al houres. It is only belonging to God and properly due unto him never to commit follie. There is, I say, no man, but otherwiles doteth, but is deceived, but plaieth the foole, though he seme never so wise. Whan I say man, I except not the woman.

    BREVISSIMA: The distich poster for today is Quod Natura Rogat. Click here for a full-sized view.


    And here are today's proverbial LOLcats:



    Cum audace non eas in via.

    Do not travel with a bold companion.

    Amore, more, ore, re iunguntur amicitiae.

    Friendships are connected
    by love (amore), by habit (more),
    by speech (ore) and by action (re).

    TODAY'S FABLES:

    MILLE FABULAE: The fable from the Mille Fabulae et Una widget is Lupus et Canis Saginatus, a story about the value of freedom.

    FABULAE FACILES: The fable from the Fabulae Faciles widget is Pirata et Alexander Rex, the story of Alexander the Great and a witty pirate (this fable has a vocabulary list).


    Latin Fables Read by Justin Slocum Bailey. Here is today's audio fable: Leo, Lepus, et Cerva, with links to the audio and to the blog post.


    Joseph Manning (The Ancient Historian)

    My current book project–The Movie version

    I’ve had fun with with Kindea Labs on making a brief video of my current book project on ancient Mediterranean economies. I will no doubt refine it, and do different versions as I complete it; but it was really fun to do.

     

     


    Tom Matrullo (Classics in Sarasota)

    Geometries of desire: Anne Carson, Women of Trachis

    A slender volume by a close reader. Anne Carson's Eros the Bittersweet culls superb lines from the entire corpus of Greek literature on the subject of Eros, and ponders them with the mind of a poet and the knowledge of a teacher of ancient Greek. She speaks of the divided soul, of love as lack, and is particularly suggestive when it comes to staged erotic triangles.



    In Sophocles' Women of Trachis, triangles proliferate:


                               Achelous                           Heracles                          Hyllus



                                                      Deianira                             Iole



                                                                        Nessus



    Samuel Hardy (Conflict Antiquities)

    Islamic State destroyed the Shia Shrine of Imam al-Daur (Samarra, Iraq, 23rd October 2014)

    Iraq’s first muqarnas-domed mausoleum [from 1085 C.E.], the tomb of the Shia ‘Uqaylid amir, Sharaf ad-Dawla Muslim, is no more. It was destroyed last week, on the 23rd of October, but identifying information came out piece by piece, alongside false evidence. Initial evidence On the 25th, Iraq Heritage posted on Facebook that ‘ISIS [had] destroy[ed] […]

    October 29, 2014

    Ancient Art

    "…Which Man deemed old two thousand years ago, Match me...





    "…Which Man deemed old two thousand years ago,

    Match me such a marvel save in Eastern climate,

    A rose-red city half as old as Time.”

    -Section from John William Burgon’s “Petra,” Newdigate Prize poem, 1840.

    The Theatre of Petra, Jordan. 

    Deep within Jordan’s desert, situated between the Dead Sea and the Red Sea, lies the hidden city of Petra, one of the ancient world’s greatest marvels. This Nabataean caravan-city has been inhabited since prehistory, and was an extremely important crossroads between Syria-Phoenicia, Egypt, and Arabia.

    Petra’s temples, dwellings, and monuments were for hundreds of years the centre of a splendid civilization. Surrounded by mountains, the city is half-built, half-carved into the rock. Certainly one of the most famous archaeological sites of the world, here ancient Eastern traditions blend with Hellenistic architecture.

    The Theatre of Petra is carved at the foot of the High Place of Sacrifice during the reign of King Aretas IV (4 BC-AD 27). Seven stairways ascend the auditorium, and it consists of three rows of seats, which have been separated by passageways. The Theatre is able to accommodate about 4000 spectators. It has undergone several successive alterations and enlargements, the Romans, for example, rebuilt the back wall and stage. This would have been a hugely important building for the city, as it was likely used for both public meetings and plays. The back and stage were once richly decorated with columns, as well as imported marble statues in the Roman period.

    Photos taken by Guillermo ValeDennis Jarvis.

    Benjamin Girard-Millereau et al. (PRISME: pratiques rituelles et symboliques en Méditerranée nord-occidentale protohistorique)

    Séminaire « Les lieux de culte en Gaule Narbonnaise – II » (04/11/2014, Montpellier)

     

    Annonce Seminaire V&C 04-11-2014

    Infos pratiques :

    Date : mardi 4 novembre 2014
    Heure : 9h30 – 17h
    Lieu : Saint-Charles
    Salle de Conférence 1
    Rue du Professeur Henri Serre
    34086 Montpellier Cedex

    Accès :
    tramway ligne 1 / arrêt Place Albert 1er

    Archaeology Magazine

    Did Cave Acoustics Inspire Prehistoric Artists?

    INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA—The field of acoustic archaeology is growing as scientists consider the importance of sound to prehistoric cultures and their rituals. Steven Waller of Rock Art Acoustics thinks that ancient people were inspired to decorate cave walls and canyons with images of herds of animals because of the thundering echoes the formations produced. He has found that European caves with higher levels of reverberation are more likely to be decorated, and in North America, there is a correlation between places in canyons with echoes and the placement of prehistoric art. “It’s a trivial little sound, but it can have a huge emotional impact if you don’t expect it, if you can’t explain it,” he told Live Science. Waller is presenting his research at the annual meeting of the Acoustical Society of America. To read more about one of the world's great cave art sites, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "A Chauvet Primer."

    Unusual Sacrifices Unearthed in Peru

    NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA—Peruvian archaeologist Gabriel Prieto and John Verano of Tulane University have expanded the excavation of a site where the sacrificed remains of 42 children and 76 young llamas were found in 2011. “This is unusual, and not what we’ve seen before, especially on the coast of Peru,” Verano told Phys.org. The site is close to the beach, in an area that was dominated by the Chimú state from 1100 to 1470 A.D., when it was conquered by the Inca Empire. “It’s not a place where you’d think to look,” he added. For more on the site and Chimú-era rituals, see "A Society's Sacrifice."

    Archaeological News on Tumblr

    Mexican archaeologists explore Teotihuacan tunnel

    Mexican archaeologists have concluded a yearslong exploration of a tunnel sealed nearly 2,000 years...

    Archaeology Magazine

    Roman Sculptures Discovered in Northern England

    PAPCASTLE, ENGLAND—A fertility genius thought to represent a local deity has been unearthed in a village in Cumbria. He holds a cornucopia and a patera, which are symbols of fertility. The site has also yielded the carved heads of male and female gods. The male statue wears a Phrygian cap, and may represent the god Mithras, or perhaps the god Attis, the consort of the goddess Cybele. If Attis, then the female head may represent his counterpart. The base of an amphora that contained a few coins, a stag figurine, and a Roman oil lamp have also been uncovered. According to a report in Culture 24, extensive flood deposits have been making it difficult for the archaeologists from Wardell Armstrong Archaeology to identify the site’s features. For more on Roman-era sculpture from Britain, see ARCHAEOLOGY's piece on a limestone depiction of an eagle carrying a snake.

    Mary Beard (A Don's Life)

    If this lady were a car...

    Corsa pic-1

    The husband and I have been thinking of getting a new car. That means for us getting a Vauxhall, not because we particularly like Vauxhall, but because there is an excellent Vauxhall Garage (Murketts of Cambridge if you want to know), about five minutes walk from our house. That means you can take the car in without having to worry about the "courtesy car" to get you back home. And anyway they are extremely nice (by which I mean when you have a silly problem that you ought to be able to solve yourself, they solve it for you and dont treat you as an idiot). We have been going there for 20 tears or so.

    So the garage is a done deal, and if that means a Vauxhall, so be it. We've never had any problems (except the clock on our last one is always running slow, and the sat nav isn't state of the art... but that isn't a big deal).

    Anyway, we had kind of decided that we would get a new Corsa. In the old days, we had needed something a bit more capacious with the kids, but now a little Corsa is quite big (and good) enough for us.

    However, when I got back from Italy, the husband was on the point of changing his allegiance. He had just been sent the new Corsa brochure. Illustration on the first page is above.

     Maybe I am naive, but I had thought the whole thing of advertising cars as woman-substitutes had gone out years ago. But this brochure didn't just have the picture of the girl with legs all over the dashboard, most pages were loaded with little bits of innuendo... "Love at first sight"  the first page was headed. "Unashamedly attention seeking", it went on, with "super-stylish curves meets touchy feely surfaces". And what about "Ambient lighting welcomes you in"? In what?

    And so it went on. Ok, I should have better things to do that to worry about what sexist rubbish car advertisers choose to plaster their brochures with. But to be honest I hadn't realised it was still the order of the day. I thought the slogan pictured above had kind of finished it.

    Besides, what was particularly weird was that this was advertising a Corsa.. a nice, decidedly middle/lower market, car aimed at people who don't think of themselves as sexy. The old-fashioned "ladies run-around", as we might once have said.

    So how do you explain it? Well, maybe I just don't realise that all cars still advertise like this. Or maybe I dont realise that it is blokes who buy the Corsa and need to be persuaded that (despite everything) it's a sexy buy. Buy a nice boring car (selling point for me) by being conned by the ads that it has ladies legs all over it?

    But -- oh Vauxhall, if you are listening to this -- I for one (and the husband) was really put off buying a Corsa thanks to your brochure. No more legs and innuendo please. What the hell impression do you think it makes on your women buyers? Stop it.

    (What is more, as the husband complains, there are no prices in the sodding brochure.)

     

     

    Ancient Peoples

    Goblet Inscribed with the Names of King Akhenaten and Queen...



    Goblet Inscribed with the Names of King Akhenaten and Queen Nefertiti

    18th Dynasty, New Kingdom

    c.1353-1336 BC

    This graceful, translucent drinking cup in the form of a white lotus blossom is treasured both for its beauty and its historical interest. The nomen (personal name) and prenomen (throne name) of Amenhotep IV are inscribed in the small panel on the side, between two cartouches surrounding the early titulary of the Aten (left) and a cartouche naming the principal queen, Nefertiti (right). Thus, the vessel must have been made before Year 5 of the king’s reign, when he changed his name to Akhenaten.

    (Source: The Met Museum)

    Open Access Archaeology

    Open Access Archaeology Digest #586

    Open Access (free to read) articles:

    Bayesian approach applied to authenticity testing by luminescence
    http://bit.ly/1aSuauc

    Un modello GIS multicriterio per la costruzione di mappe di plausibilità per la localizzazione di siti archeologici: il caso della costa teramana
    http://bit.ly/103oooh

    Notice of a large Cinerary Urn found on the Farm of Quarryford, East Lothian.
    http://bit.ly/14sFwDO

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

    Irene Hahn and Bingley Austin (Roman History Books and More)

    online book chats

    Exlibris logo, click for website This blog is an adjunct to The Roman History Reading Group which meets on the first and third Wednesday of each month except August in our chat room from 9:30 to 11:00 p.m. US EST (UTC/GMT -04).  This means that in Asia and Australia/Pacific, it's daytime. Here is a world time clock as a general assistance for non-USAns.

    Chat room location (with instructions) at Skype IM.

    2014 Reading Schedule
    2015 Reading Schedule

    B0017UEUCQOctober 1 & 15, November 5
    Livia: First Lady of Imperial Rome
    by Anthony Barrett 
    (used copies may be had at ABEbooks.com and elsewhere)
    Also as eBook at Amazon and iTunes.

    B00GU35JN4November 19
    The Legate's Daughter: A Novel
    by Wallace Breem
    (used copies may be had at ABEbooks.com and elsewhere)
    Also as eBook at Amazon.

    Join us!
    Find us on Facebook and Twitter.

    Free Shipping on eligible orders over $25 - Shop today at Barnesandnoble.com!
    Proceeds from any book sales benefit our local historical society, a non-profit corporation. Change of links from Amazon.com to B&N are in the process of being made.

    Archaeology Magazine

    Aluminum Debris Identified as Amelia Earhart Artifact

    OXFORD, PENNSYLVANIA—A piece of aluminum recovered from Nikumaroro, an uninhabited atoll in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, has been identified to a high degree of certainty as a patch that had been applied to Amelia Earhart’s Lockheed Electra on a stop during her attempt to circumnavigate the globe. The repair can been seen in a photograph published in the Miami Herald on June 1, 1937. The aluminum debris was discovered on the island in 1991 by researchers from The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR). They compared the patch’s dimensions and features with the window of a Lockheed Electra being restored at Wichita Air Services in Newton, Kansas. “Its complex fingerprint of dimensions, proportions, materials and rivet patterns was as unique to Earhart’s Electra as a fingerprint is to an individual,” Rick Gillespie, executive director of TIGHAR, told Discovery News. He adds that the piece of the plane provides strong circumstantial evidence that Earhart and her navigator, Fred Noonan, landed on Nikumaroro’s coral reef and eventually died there as castaways. TIGHAR will continue to look for wreckage of the lost aircraft, thought to have washed into the ocean, next summer, beginning at a possible site 600 feet underwater. For more on the TIGHAR's work, see "Has Amelia Earhart's Plane Been Found?"

    The Archaeology News Network

    More on Roman treasure uncovered at Cumbrian dig

    A carving of a Roman fertility god from the first century AD has been unearthed during an excavation in Cumbria. The complete statue of Roman fertility god Genius Loci is thought to be the  guardian of the area [Credit: Wardell Armstrong/BBC]The find, called Genius Loci, is about 2ft (0.6m) tall and was discovered by archaeologists from Wardell Armstrong at Papcastle near Cockermouth. Regional manager, Frank Giecco, said it was...

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

    The Egyptiana Emporium

    NEWS: 18th Dynasty temple discovered during illegal excavations

    IMG_2067.JPGGiza men arrested after digging up ancient temple under house
    Men carrying out illegal excavation work found the remains of an Egyptian temple from the reign of New Kingdom King Tuthmose III (Source: Ahram Online).

    “Seven residents of a Giza district have been arrested after they illegally excavated the area beneath their home and found the remains of an ancient Egyptian temple.

    The huge limestone blocks, engraved with hieroglyphic texts, date from the reign of the New Kingdom’s King Tuthmose III, and were found in the Hod Zeleikha area of Al-Badrasheen district.

    The find was made two weeks ago, according to Major General Momtaz Fathi, an aide to the interior ministry and a director in the tourism police.

    A unit from the tourism and antiquities police heard of the illegal excavation work and arrested the seven men – two of whom are Palestinian, Fathi said.

    The police also found diving costumes, oxygen cylinders and diving masks with the detainees.

    Antiquities Minister Mamdouh El-Damaty said that the unearthed blocks are genuine and belong to a huge temple from the reign of King Tuthmose III.

    Seven reliefs and two marble columns were unearthed along with a huge red-granite armless colossus of a seated person, El-Damaty.

    The items have been brought to the Saqqara site for restoration and further study, the minister said, adding that the Hod Zeleikha area has now been declared an archeological site and under the control of the ministry in order carry out more surveys nearby and unearth more of the temple” – via Ahram Online.

    More pictures here.


    Andie Byrnes (Egyptology News)

    Egyptological Headers - 6 months in!


    To celebrate 6 months of the Prehistoric, Predynastic and Early Dynastic Facebook page.


    I realized yesterday that we have been up and running for just over six months (we started up on 22nd April 2014). A huge thank you to everyone who has posted, commented and otherwise participated. You're all doing a terrific job of exchanging information and expanding our group's knowledge about prehistoric, Predynastic and Early Dynastic Egypt. When we started it I had no idea if it would work, but it certainly has. Well done to all of you.  Just for fun, I have put together all the headers to date.  You'll need to click on the image to see the bigger version.


    Click to see a bigger image.



    Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online)

    REVEAL (Reconstruction and Exploratory Visualization: Engineering meets ArchaeoLogy)

    REVEAL (Reconstruction and Exploratory Visualization: Engineering meets ArchaeoLogy)
    http://www.vizin.org/projects/reveal/images/reveal_LOGO01_white-bkgd.jpg 
    Inaccuracies, Inconsistencies and Impatience

    One of the key problems in archaeology is trying to accurately locate things like trenches, walls, and artifacts in 3D space.  Traditionally, archaeologists describe their finds, manually take measurements, and use hand-drawn sketches and occasional photographs to record the contexts of artifacts, strata, and architectural features.  This methodology suffers from inaccuracy, inconsistent terminology, transcription errors, and just taking too long.  Some things are not recorded at all because their significance is not recognized until too late. 

    Other issues for fieldteams include noting what was found, who found it, what are the find’s characteristics, figuring out how all this data should be organized, and how other researchers can assimilate all this information.  Understanding the meaning, context, and function of an object evolves over time as it is examined and categorized, which often involves multiple specialists each of whom may submit data in different formats.  The standard collocation methods don't effectively allow hypothesis testing on all the excavated data in real time; nor allow for planning field strategies while the dig is underway.   Normally, we have to wait until all evidence has been collected, analyzed, and synthesized--that often takes years and is unfair to our colleagues.

    Has the transition to digital acquisition technologies improved the situation?  We now have the choice of laser scans, LIDAR, digital photography, databases, CAD, GIS, GPS, total stations, and even smartphones with high-res cameras and custom apps that can be tailored for use during excavations. 

    Putting Technology to Work

    Using total stations and related equipment to survey a site is time consuming and expensive, only those points that were considered important at the time are recorded, and the points are hard to collate with the rest of the datasets from the site.  GIS is superlative for 2D spatial data, but not so useful as a general purpose data exploration tool, and generally has poor integration with interactive 3D visualizations.   Harris Matrix tools focus on displaying stratigraphic sequences, with little integration with other datatypes.  Custom site-specific databases are uneven in the comprehensiveness of their features and cannot be easily generalized to other excavations.

    What site directors really need is a single complete package that keeps things digital from acquisition to publication, integrates all data types, and can be used across different excavations with minimal modification.  The goal would be to ease recording and recall for researchers of all backgrounds.  

    That’s exactly what our consortium set out to create.
     [ project | setting | solution | gallery | research ]



























    Samuel Hardy (Conflict Antiquities)

    Islamic State has destroyed yet another Yezidi shrine (Sinjar, Iraq, by 29th October 2014)

    Acid Jordi (@Aceeeeeed) shared video frames that showed that ‘#ISIS destroyed another ancient #Yazidi #Ezidi Shrine in the #Sinjar area’. They were taken from an official release of the Nineveh Mandate of the Islamic State. It was yet another advertising brochure for death and destruction. Êzidî Press (@EzidiPress) is still trying to confirm whether or […]

    The Archaeology News Network

    Researcher explores the truths behind myths of ancient Amazons

    Hippolyta, Antiope and Penthesilea. These are the names of Amazonian women warriors made famous in folklore, thanks in large part to male Greek storytellers like Homer and Herodotus. In some archaeological digs in Eurasia, as many as thirty-seven per cent of the graves  contain the bones and weapons of horsewomen who fought alongside men  [Credit Erich Lessing/Art Resource]They were huntresses, founders of cities, rivals...

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

    Archaeological News on Tumblr

    Large paleolithic site found in NE China

    Chinese archaeologists said they have discovered a large paleolithic site that dates back 10,000 to...

    Giza men arrested after digging up ancient temple under house

    Seven residents of a Giza district have been arrested after they illegally excavated the area...

    The Archaeology News Network

    Mexico archaeologists explore Teotihuacan tunnel

    A yearslong exploration of a tunnel sealed almost 2,000 years ago at the ancient city of Teotihuacan yielded thousands of relics and the discovery of three chambers that could hold more important finds, Mexican archaeologists said Wednesday. A sculpture unearthed at the Teotihuacan archaeological site in Mexico  [Credit: AP/Proyecto Tlalocan/INAH)]Project leader Sergio Gomez said researchers recently reached the end of the...

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

    Dorothy King (PhDiva)

    Amphipolis: A Marks the Spot?

    I'll quickly explain this again.

    The marks I noticed were there, and not just like seeing things in clouds.

    Mrs Medoni confirmed that the marks were made by masons not by accident, and that obviously the archaeologists were aware of them! As I keep saying these guys are very good, so I'm not pointing out anything they wouldn't know.

    There is a difference between marks made by masons and "mason's marks" ...

    Although a number of Greek buildings have letters on them loosely termed "mason's marks" that term is itself controversial and there are huge discussions going on between academics about what they were.

    Were they guides for the builders to put the blocks in the right place? Possibly, but most buildings were finished in situ, with for example column flutes carved once all the drums were in place on the building.

    Where they signatures? Sometimes this seems possible, although at other times - for example the idea that a Pi found on a lion from the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus stands for Praxiteles (corrected - sorry am obsessing about Hecatomnus) - this seems highly imaginative rather than likely.

    The most creative recent idea by a team of American scholars is that they were musical notes and that tholoi were designed to play music in. That's a little too creative for my liking, and I'm pretty sure we can agree that Amphipolis was neither a giant musical instrument nor a space for music recitals.

    Also, "mason's marks" if they are used to located blocks in different areas of a monument are more likely to vary: eg Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta etc.

    All the letters I've spotted in the photographs of Amphipolis seem to be Alphas or variations on Alphas.

    When all the letters seem to be the same, it is far more likely to be a monogram. Although monograms on blocks are less common, there are very similar ones of Antigonus at Troy, and as I have noted before, the temple they are on was the one Alexander the Great requested in his will.

    So, this was the very first photograph I looked at. It's on this web site, and I circled the part I would like to discuss. Ideally inscriptions are photographed with different light to make them clear, but this is a monogram which would have been covered in stucco.

    This is a coin of Alexander the Great showing one of the monograms he used (source):


    This is a coin of Philip III Arrhidaeus with the AT monogram that also appears on many coins with Alexander (source):




    This is a coin of Antigonus I Monophthalmus with the AT monogram that also appears on many coins with Alexander (source):



    Anyway, I do realise half of Greece is now going to be examining every block photograph under a microscope ... it may not be as exciting as an inscription saying "Alexander tied his horse up here and was buried at Amphipolis" ... but these sorts of monograms were important.

    Taken alone they do not date or identify the building 100%, but they are almost certainly one of the many key pieces of evidence the excavators are using.

    Here's the deal: I can't see the letters clearly enough to see if they are of Alexander the Great or of Antigonus, and I'm not even sure if they are all the same monogram or a couple of different ones. Antigonus would be amazing as it would mean he finished the tomb, the same way he tried to fulfill Alexander's wishes at Troy.

    But, the one I highlighted above does seem to possibly have the same strange archaising bent bar as the ancestral inscription from the palace at Aegae.


     Again, this might be a trick of the light, and all will be revealed in due course!

    Finally, there seem to be a lot of angry coin 'experts' saying these are not monograms but mint marks .... ouch. There are mint marks on coins to show where they were minted. But since Alexander the Great's image continued to be used on coins for centuries after his death by rulers that wanted to assert themselves as his heirs, they also added monograms to show who had ordered the coin to be struck.



    Coins can have both mint marks and monograms on them! But since buildings were not minted, they don't have mint marks - just monograms.

    People have always collected coins because they are a great way to get in touch with history, and coin collectors have put up an extraordinary amount of information on the internet. But ... some of it is more enthusiastic than accurate, so please be careful and as with Wikipedia check to make sure it is correct.