Latest update: 4/3/2005; 2:15:02 PM
quidquidquid bene dictum est ab ullo, meum est ~ Seneca

FOLLOWUP: Fallen Journalists Monument

A few days ago I mentioned the Civil War Correspondents Monument and puzzled over a description which suggested one of the figures on said monument was Pan. The Baltimore Sun seems to have answered my question:

An alcove houses a restored statue of Orpheus, the mythic singer of ancient Greece who could charm all with his music and tales.

Orpheus does make sense ...


::Thursday, October 02, 2003 8:41:06 PM::
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I'm still trying to follow the line of thought in this one. It's an Op Ed piece (I think ...) from Asia Times which meanders through Victor Davis Hanson, Western racism, Greek tragedy, and terrorism. I can't really find a way to excerpt it that makes sense, so here's just a teaser quote from near the end:

A terrorist who understands Sophocles, as I have written in the past, is a formidable opponent. He provides an opportunity for his enemy to play out the role of tragic hero, who wishes to bring the benefits of Western democracy to the Arab masses, but only redoubles their suffering.

The article ...

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 8:30:20 PM::
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NUNTII: Older Bits of Pompeii

An ongoing dig in Regio VI of Pompeii has turned up evidence of what the town was like between the sixth and third centuries B.C.. Inter alia, we read:

Pompeii was covered by nine feet of volcanic ash and pumice on Aug. 24 in A.D. 79. As a result, cobbled streets, homes, villas with superb mosaics and frescoes, amazing public spaces and daily life objects, have been preserved forever, fascinating visitors since excavation begun during the late 18th century.

The town that is coming to light is slightly different. It was characterized by steps and narrow streets accessible only with donkeys, while row of smaller houses lined larger streets.

"Pompeii was built on steps degrading toward [the] south. This is one of the reasons why the site was originally chosen to build a settlement. Given the town's position, rain water would have flowed down preventing floods," Pesando said.

In the following century, Pompeii slowly turned into the city that visitors admire today. The steps disappeared and new houses were built on top of the old ones, making the town more even and regular.

Pesando concentrated mainly on a large house between the streets Vicolo di Modesto and Vicolo della Fullonica. Extending over an area of more than 1,300 square feet, the house revealed three levels of floors. The oldest one, a third century mosaic floor, has been recovered almost intact.

Hopefully we'll have more to report on this. Until then, here's the rest at

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 8:18:00 PM::
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A rogueclassicism reader passed this one along (thanks LC!) ... it actually doesn't have that much Classical content, but will have some resonances with folks tracking anti-Americanism in the world and especially my fellow Canucks who continue to ponder the place of Quebec in Confederation. The article from the New Criterion takes as its point of departure:

“Cultural diversity” has replaced “cultural exceptionalism” in the French-inspired, European rhetoric. But in actuality, the two terms cover the same kind of cultural protectionism. The idea that a culture can preserve its originality by barricading itself against foreign influences is an old illusion that has always produced the opposite of the desired result. Isolation breeds sterility. It is the free circulation of cultural products and talents that allows each society to perpetuate and renew itself.

The proof of this goes back to the old comparison between Athens and Sparta. It was Athens, the open city, that was the prolific fount of creation in letters and arts, philosophy and mathematics, political science, and history. Sparta, jealously guarding its “exceptionalism,” pulled off the tour de force of being the only Greek city not to have produced a single notable poet, orator, thinker, or architect; their achievement was “diversity” of a sort, but at the price of emptiness. Parallel phenomena of cultural vacuity are found again in contemporary totalitarian states ...

Worth a look ...

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 8:07:57 PM::
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NUNTII: Beneath St. Peter's

A fellow punch buggy enthusiast/endurer sent this one along (thanks JM-Y!) ... the Atlantic Monthly has a nice piece on what's been found beneath St. Peter's Basilica. It also has a nice overview of how the place came to be associated with St. Peter and closes with:

In ancient times, Roman historians tell us, this swampy region beyond the Tiber was an eerie borderland of fevers and giant snakes, where the voices of the gods could be heard. These historians derived the name Vaticanum from vates, a holy seer who understood these voices. Pliny described an ancient oak, still standing there in his day, on which were bronze Etruscan letters of religious significance. Later, extravagant temples and sacred compounds rose here to Eastern deities. The ecstatic rites celebrated there fascinated the Romans, but were too exotic to be held within the city itself. Small wonder that Peter, hero of another marginal Eastern cult, was believed to have come here in the end, or that Constantine built a glorious new temple in his honor. The Vatican has always been sacred soil.

Definitely worth a look ...

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 7:59:45 PM::
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REVIEWS: In the latest BMCR

J.A. Cerrato, Hippolytus between East and West. The Commentaries and
the Provenance of the Corpus

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 7:53:10 PM::
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ante diem vi nonas octobres

  • 303 -- martyrdom of Eleutherius, a soldier accused (with others) of burning down one of Diocletian's palaces

I also have as "unconfirmed":

  • 322 B.C. -- death of Aristotle

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 5:52:11 AM::
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CHATTER: Also Seen

Noted in passing in the Oregonian:

Jackson B. Miller, assistant professor of communication arts, will perform the one-person play "Cicero Speaks" at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday in the Ford Hall Courtyard. Performances are free and open to the public.

Miller will portray the Roman orator Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 B.C.). The play features excerpts from five of Cicero's speeches and passages from his writing and letters.

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 5:36:39 AM::
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NUNTII: Greatest Black Briton

The Mirror relates the search for the "Greatest Black Briton" in all of British history dating back to Roman times. In the running are St. George of Lydda (yep, the dragon slayer) and Septimius Severus (yep, the emperor) ... oh oh. Here's the list of other contenders ...

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 5:33:01 AM::
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NUNTII: Classics Club

SMU's relatively-recently-formed Classics Club received some press coverage of its activities. Ecce ...

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 5:23:43 AM::
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LUDI: Age of Titans

There's a new addon for all you Age of Mythology fans out there:

Gamers will now be able to take control over the gigantic and super-powerful Titans and use their unique abilities to wreak destruction upon their enemies.

Age of Mythology: The Titans for Windows adds a fourth mythology, the Atlanteans, to the existing Greek, Egyptian and Norse mythologies. The brand new Titans single player campaign will add yet another chapter to the franchise's expansive folklore with the addition of 12 story-driven scenarios and in-game cinematics. Atlantean players will be able to call upon the might of the Titan gods multiple times throughout the game, and may also upgrade human units to heroes.

More ...

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 5:20:37 AM::
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CHATTER: Wonder Woman

We're probably pushing the envelope, Classics-wise, on this one, but Wonder Woman is an Amazon. In the scan this a.m. there appeared a lenghty interviewish thing from a comic convention with the team that is currently putting together Wonder Woman comics. Some excerpts:

Diana has to change. One of the first things we set out to do was to try to figure out where we're starting from. And where we're starting from is [Wonder Woman's role as] the Ambassador from the Amazon nation of Themyscira. That has an obvious political agenda, and then try to tie that with the fact that she is literally a character out of Greek myth. This is someone who's on a first-name basis with the Greek gods. So the immediate tension here is between the real, the political [and the myth]. We have to make the political team realistic enough that people who read the book go "Okay, yeah, I can accept that," even though we're talking about the DC universe where the Batmobile never gets stuck in traffic. [laughter] We're trying to take the mythological element [and the political] and then sort of fuse them.


The high concept buzz phrase I usually throw around is, this Wonder Woman is [like] "Walt Simonson's Thor meets The West Wing". There's sort of this juxtaposition of really involved political debate combined with gods trying to exercise their dominion over mortal people and over each other...


Even if you're not a Wonder Woman fan, you've got to like this early image of the character Ferdinand:

The whole interview ...


::Thursday, October 02, 2003 5:17:13 AM::
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Grand Valley State: Language and Literature (tenure track)

Previous jobs (don't forget to check the calendar on the jobs page ... move it back to September to see posts from the previous month)

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 5:01:40 AM::
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AWOTV: On TV Today:

4.00 p.m. |DCIVC| Byzantium: Forever and Ever

7.00 p.m. |HINT| The Rise of Christianity: The First 1000
Years, Pt. 1
"The story begins not with Jesus, but 50 days after his
crucifixion, when a rushing wind and tongues of fire descended
upon his followers "and all of them were filled with the Holy
Spirit and began to speak in other languages." When Saul of
Tarsus turns into Paul and travels to preach to the Gentiles,
the religion spreads."

HINT = History International

DCIVC = Discovery Civilization (Canadian version)

::Thursday, October 02, 2003 4:55:14 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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