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quidquidquid bene dictum est ab ullo, meum est ~ Seneca

BLOGGING 201: Other Blogs

As can been seen from the sidebar, rogueclassicism isn't the only blog around that is devoted to matters pertaining to the ancient world. Over the past year or so, a large number of such blogs have hit the internet, each with its own little niche. Here's the rundown of what you might expect to find at each. First, the blogs of the Classicists:

Dr. Weevil is run by a mysterious Classicist known to the world only as "Dr. Weevil". He bills his blog as a mixture of "Punditry, Pedantry, Poetry and Pie (... mmm Pie), which is a good description. It provides a mixture of political commentary, personal observations, and Classical stuff and is updated every two or three days. He generates a lot of discussion and is frequently responded to in other blogs of a more political nature.

The Book Mom's Book Blog is managed by Classicist Debra Hamel, who is clearly a voracious reader -- she reads more in a week than some people I know read their entire lives -- and reviews books of all genres. Dr. Hamel is also the author of  Trying Neaira: The True Story of a Courtesan's Scandalous Life in Ancient Greece, which has a website appropriately entitled where you can win a copy of the book for recommending the site (note in passing: to be fair, I'm disqualifying myself from the contest).

Classics in Contemporary Culture is assembled by Classicist Mischa Hooker and is sort of an ‘unblog' blog in that he ‘does it the old fashioned way', without benefit of such programs as Movable Type or Blogger. He regularly scans the press for ‘everyday' coverage which has a classical allusion or draws on some classical source for its inspiration in some way. There are updates at least once a week, and usually they're more frequent.'s Ancient History site has had N.S. Gill as their Ancient History Guide for as long as I can remember and they've recently made the homepage of all their ‘Guide' sites into something more closely resembling a blog. As with her site prior to this change, the Ancient History ‘blog' provides daily links to websites, news, articles, etc..

As some might be aware, I've just recently come across Mary Harrsch's impressive portfolio of websites and blogs. Both Academic Presentations on the Roman Empire and Roman Times provide links to news items of interest (usually with a photo). We can also mention here her Passionate About History and Technology blog which goes beyond the confines of the Roman world.

Stepping outside of the strict world of Classics, but staying firmly in the ancient world, we can begin our tour with Paleojudaica. Assembled by Dr. James Davila, a professor of Early Jewish Studies at St. Mary's College at St. Andrew's and long time member of the Ioudaios list, this frequently updated site picks up news items, book reviews, conference reports, etc., having to do with "Ancient Judaism and its Context" . Dr. Davila has also done much to promote rogueclassicism in his pages, for which I express my gratitude!

Somewhat similar and just bursting onto the blog scene (and soon to make it to my sidebar), is Mark Goodacre's NT Gateway. It's still in its infancy, but its focus is early Christianity and looks promising!

Turning now to the world of 'archaeoblogs' (or blogs dealing with archaeology), one of the first is Anita Cohen-Williams' Archaeology Online blog. Cohen-Williams is well known in the 'archaeo-internet' as the owner of various listservs, and began her blog as a means to disseminate information about decent websites dealing with the subject.

David Nishimura's Cronaca is subtitled "Past Imperfect, Present Subjunctive, Future Conditional". It is a frequently-updated mixture of archaeological, cultural, academic and political snippets.

Phluzein comprises (Canadian?) Anders Bell's "news and musings about archaeology and the ancient world". It tends to avoid matters political and presents plenty of news about matters archaeological and historical. Always a good read!

In a similar category would be, run by fellow-Canuck "Christine" (that's all I've been able to find out). She similarly focuses on matters historical and archaeological, with a predeliction for the medieval, although the ancient world definitely creeps in regularly.

We can quickly deal with the 'DWEM' (dead white european male) blogs. Almost all of these blogs are political (or at least religio-political) and the owner has taken on the persona of some ancient person. In this category we include Archidamus, Cato the Youngest, the Old Oligarch, and Tacitus (the latter seems to be getting some press coverage in relation to the California election).

A noteworthy exception is the Bloggus Caesari, which is basically the blog Julius Caesar would have written while on campaign. Each day brings a new entry in his ongoing conquest of Gaul (I think this one is Canadian in origin as well ... I'm beginning to sense a trend). For those whose historical interests are somewhat later, Pepys Diary gives Samuel Pepys similar treatment.

Finally, also worthy of mention are a couple of other blogs of interest. Out of Lascaux is a 'culture blog' with wide ranging topics from the world of art, literature, archaeology and the like. It is good for keeping tabs on other art and culture blogs as well. The Chronica Majora is also interesting ... it's basically the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle bloggified; it was inactive for quite a while but is possibly being reborn.

I'm sure I've left some out along the way. If so, please feel free to remind me. If it is the sort of thing that I think readers of rogueclassicism will take interest in, I'll mention it! Thanks!

Next: How rogueclassicism came to be ...

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 8:45:35 PM::
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BLOGGING 101: Extra Credit

Last week we started our 'degree course' in blogging since it is a relatively new phenomenon to most. In our 'introductory class' I mentioned what a blog is, yadda yadda yadda. In response, Jorn Barger, a long-time "explorator" reader and denizen of the humanities.classics newsgroup (among various other fora) reminded me that he had coined the term "weblog" back in 1997, at a time when what we might call a weblog today was referred to as a "news page". His Robot Wisdom blog is still running and includes a nice FAQ (frequently asked questions) page as well. Both are worth a look for those desiring to know more about blogs in general. [note to JB -- I tried to email you but thinks kept bouncing!]

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 7:45:25 PM::
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NUNTII: Juvenalia Lycurgianaque

Nice to see some of the 'other' figures from Classics land getting some press time. In a piece in the Santa Cruz Sentinel waxes ... er, he probably doesn't ... about the migration of hair from head to other parts of one's body as one ages (boy, do I know that phenomenon!). First he trots out Juvenal:

Of course, no one spoke as eloquently in favor of body hair as the Roman, Juvenal, who was born just after the death of Jesus. He said, "A hairy body and arms indicate a manly soul." That’s a noble thought, but I’d still rather have a manly head of hair.

Then comes the quote from Lycurgus (the original is in Plutarch's Life ...):

There is some pleasure in noting that Lycurgus, as far back as 850 B.C., recognized that too much hair could be a drawback. He said, "A large head of hair makes the ... ugly more terrible." He also said a little something about how graceful the handsome look with a full head of hair, but I’m not obliged to quote things that hurt my case.

Elsewhere, specifically in the Daily Hampshire Gazette (I may have mentioned this one already), outgoing president William Bulger also quoted from Juvenal:

Bulger, who is known for quoting widely, said another apt quote is from Juvenal, a First Century satirist: "I consider it to be the greatest evil to prefer life to honor and for the sake of life to lose all reasons for living."



::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 7:01:14 PM::
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NUNTII: Irene Papas Interview

Poking a little further in eKathimerini, I find an interview with Irene Papas, who will be "interpreting" Euripides' Hecuba (in Italian) and The Trojan Women (in Spanish) in Rome. The final question of the interview is interesting:

Did you select “The Trojan Women” and “Hecuba” for their anti-war content?

No way! God help us! I would never be able to humiliate Euripides to the extent of saying that I chose him because he was current. I chose “The Trojan Women” because it suited the location at which it would be played in Sagundo — a warehouse at the port. What should I think? That the play is current today and won’t be tomorrow? These plays always have something to do with people and Euripides is always current. Unfortunately. I always say, “When will Euripides die?” Because that would mean that we’ve evolved as human beings. That we can communicate, stop killing each other.

Read the whole thing ...

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 6:23:19 PM::
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I believe we mentioned a while back the success of a young home schooler at this year's NJCL ... the student of Susan Shearer. The Winchester Star has an update with a nice reason at the end for taking Latin.

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 6:15:19 PM::
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NUNTII: Theban Cycle in Athens

The most recent "explorator" mentioned that an African-American troupe was headed to Athens to put the Oedipus trilogy on. Today's eKathimerini has an interview with the director, Michael Kahn.

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 6:11:12 PM::
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ante diem v idus septembres

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 5:42:35 AM::
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NUNTII: Niall Slater Elected to Lead Phi Beta Kappa

This just in (literally) ... classicist Niall Slater has been elected president of the national Phi Beta Kappa thing.

Read more in the Emory Wheel ...

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 5:26:12 AM::
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NUNTII: Noted in Passing

A piece in the Herald tells of a project to clean up a radioactive contaminated site by means (at some point) of willow trees has a bit of ClassCon in the sidebar:

Most willow species grow close to water or in damp places, and this led to them being associated with ancient Greek divinities such as Hecate, the goddess of the moon and of willow, who also taught sorcery and witchcraft.

The willow muse, Heliconian, was sacred to poets, and Orpheus carried willow branches on his adventures in the Underworld.

I wasn't aware that the muses from Mt. Helicon were associated with willows ...

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 5:21:42 AM::
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NUNTII: VDH "Our Current War Is Not New"

The omnipresent Victor Davis Hanson has a piece  in In Principle (which apparently was written quite a while ago) in which he waxes on the 'war on terrorism' with  rather more ancient allusions than he has been making lately. To wit:

I want to go then to the larger example of war itself for guidance. We’re told that war is rare or that it’s amoral. It is supposedly an artifact to us who now live in modern post-heroic, post-modern society. Go back to the ancient Greeks. They accepted war as a tragic fact of life. Sophocles the poet said it was hateful. Solon said it hunts out young men and targets them. Herodotus said that it is a terrible time when fathers bury sons rather than sons, fathers. But out of that tragedy, came a grudging acceptance that it was a tool to combat aggression and indeed evil. They also thought unfortunately it was ubiquitous. It was always there, lurking in the shadows. Plato confessed that peace, not war, is the aberration in human experience. The pre-Socratic philosopher, Heraclites, announced that war is the father of us all.

Read the rest ...

::Tuesday, September 09, 2003 5:09:41 AM::
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1. n. an abnormal state or condition resulting from the forced migration from a lengthy Classical education into a profoundly unClassical world; 2. n. a blog about Ancient Greece and Rome compiled by one so afflicted (v. "rogueclassicist"); 3. n. a Classics blog.

Publishing schedule:
Rogueclassicism is updated daily, usually before 7.00 a.m. (Eastern) during the week. Give me a couple of hours to work on my sleep deficit on weekends and holidays, but still expect the page to be updated by 10.00 a.m. at the latest.

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