Having given my blog a new name and style (what we hip media academics call 'rebranding') I realized it might be worth explaining what the new name means. Historiai is the plural of the word historiê (ἱστορίη); this is, of course, the term from which English 'history' is derived. And in Greek and Latin, from the fourth... Continue Reading →
I recently finished reading a book on an aspect of the Classical world that neither I, nor many other Classicists likely have thought much about. The book is Anthony Kaldellis’ The Byzantine Republic, which deals with the Eastern Roman Empire (called by modern scholars “Byzantine”) which ruled a fluctuating area centred on Anatolia and the... Continue Reading →
My friend and colleague Philip Boyes writes about the strange evolution of an ancient Near Eastern deity. Well worth checking out!
(or, What This Ugaritian Storm-God Looks Like Now Will Astound You!)
Ba’al on a stele from Ugarit, now in the Louvre
Reconstruction of the Temple of Ba’al on the acropolis of Ugarit. From Callot 2011
- Ever since excavations began at the Syrian city of Ugarit in 1929, the importance of the god Baʿal has been clear. Among the first Ugaritic texts discovered at the site were mythological tablets recounting the legends of this god; Baʿal’s temple was excavated in prime position on the city’s acropolis, close to that of his father Dagan. While the supreme god El occupied the pinnacle of the Ugaritian pantheon, as more and more ritual and religious documents have been recovered from Ugarit, it’s become unquestionable that the city’s people felt a particular fondness and affinity for Baʿal, the archetypal king who had his palace on Mount Saphon overlooking the city.
But Baʿal was not solely…
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In honour of International Women's Day, Pippa Steele of Cambridge's CREWS project (Contexts and Relationships between Early Writing Systems) has blogged about two women who had a massive influence on the study of Ancient Greek writing systems. https://crewsproject.wordpress.com/2017/03/08/celebrating-women-epigraphists/
I'm working on a longer post, but for the moment I thought I'd do some quick links to showcase the work of my friends and colleagues. Boardgames and ancient times seems to be a major point of intersection in the circles I move in, and two Cambridge classicists have done some amazing work adapting pre-existing... Continue Reading →