Latest update: 4/4/2005; 4:12:54 AM
quidquidquid bene dictum est ab ullo, meum est ~ Seneca

NUNTII: The Benefits of Latin

Wow ... a pile of LatinTeach listers weighed in on this one, inter alia:

Laura Vail, who teaches Latin at Caldwell Academy in northwest Greensboro, said Latin is a highly structured, patterned language, and studying it helps students develop concentration and mental discipline. She said those skills will help students in whatever subjects they study.

Ginny Lindzey says studying Latin does more than just build language skills. Lindzey, a middle school Latin teacher in Texas, works with several organizations, such as the Classical Association of the Middle West and South and the National Committee for Latin and Greek, to promote the study of Latin.

Roman culture was rich and exciting, she said. At the time, Rome was a superpower and its influence extended far beyond its borders. Lindzey said American students can see parallels to their own society.

"We can study the Romans, long dead and thus safe to criticize all we want, and learn from them," she said.

Richard LaFleur, a classics professor at the University of Georgia and a nationally known advocate for Latin, said Latin classrooms now include lessons on what life was like for common people living in the Roman Empire.

Because the empire extended into three continents -- Europe, Africa and Asia -- LaFleur said it was a true "cultural melting pot."

In addition to civics and history, Latin students also study classics of literature, art history and mythology. LaFleur points to the success of the movie "Gladiator" as evidence that stories of ancient Rome can still capture the imaginations of modern-day audiences.

"There's all kinds of things you can learn from Latin," said Sarah Wright, a Latin teacher at Northwest High School.

Or, as the Roman philosopher Seneca put it, "We learn not for school, but for life."

The whole thang ...

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 6:09:37 PM::
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CHATTER: Tazo Iced Tea

I'm sure we've all seen the (rather expensive) Tazo Iced Tea in the variety store cooler as we were searching for BuzzWater or Jolt or whatever. The Phoenix draws our attention to the strange little tongue-in-cheek commericalish blurbs that appear on its labels, including this one:

 "Better than hemlock...without the bitter afterlife." Socrates, 810 BC

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 5:58:45 PM::
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CHATTER: Children's Books

This interesting little tidbit turned up in the scan tonight ... it's from The Alien Online Website and details what children's fantasy author Katherine Roberts is working on:

"I am now hard at work on my Seven Fabulous Wonders series for Collins Children's Books, which consists of one book based on each of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The fourth book in the series The Mausoleum Murder is published on December 1 2003. Its young hero, Alexis, is a descendant of King Midas and has the Midas touch, only in reverse instead of turning things into gold, he turns gold into other things. The book is set during the famous siege of Halicarnassos by Alexander the Great.

"Book five, The Olympic Conspiracy, has been delivered to my publishers, and is set for publication in summer 2004 to tie in with the Athens Olympic Games. I am currently working on book six, based on the Colossus of Rhodes.

"I am also very pleased to have a contract to write another book for The Chicken House UK/Scholastic US. Provisionally titled Bucephalus, this will be the story of Alexander the Great literally from the horse's mouth. Since I used to work with racehorses and spent most of my childhood around ponies, I'm really looking forward to writing this one!"

There's a link to KR's website, which has an extract from her latest -- The Mausoleum Murder -- as a pdf. Seems like okay stuff, aimed possibly at Grades 5 - 7. It doesn't feel ancient, though.

As long as I'm talking about fiction, Classicists who want to read something with their Middle-School-aged kiddies will probably enjoy Philip Pullman's The Golden Compass and its sequels. Plenty of interesting 'classicalia', not the least of which is the fact that everyone in the series (give or take) has a daimon, the conception of which makes reading about Socrates somewhat more interesting for the non-philosophes among us.

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 5:51:43 PM::
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REVIEWS: The Latest from BMCR

More catching up ... my timing seems off of late:

Robert Zaborowski, La crainte et le courage dans l'Iliade et
  (Review in English)

Seth Benardete, Encounters & Reflections. Edited by Ronna Burger.

Lloyd P. Gerson, Knowing Persons: A Study in Plato.

Philippe Rouet, Approaches to the Study of Attic Vases. Beazley and
Translated by Liz Nash.

Maria Broggiato (ed.), Cratete di Mallo: I frammenti. Edizione, introduzione e note. (review in English)

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 5:38:03 PM::
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ante diem iii kalendas decembres

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 8:30:38 AM::
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CLASSCON: From the Gazette!

ClassCon in the Montreal Gazette (home of Canada's finest comics section):

Back in the days of the Roman republic, the senator Marcus Porcius Cato ended every speech, no matter what the topic, with the phrase: "Carthago delenda est" - Carthage must be destroyed.

In the here and 21st century now at Montreal city hall, nobody's wearing a toga, yet there is a feud brewing, apparently as bitter as that which pitted Cato's Rome against the rival city of Carthage.

Whether it's Mayor Gérald Tremblay, executive committee chairperson Frank Zampino or Montreal Transit Corp. chairperson Claude Dauphin doing the talking, no public statement - at least none that has anything to do with spending public money - begins or ends without a reference to the fact that the provincial government is sitting on top of cash they feel should be headed to Montreal.


While Fournier doesn't exactly pull out his pant pockets to show how broke he is, the fact he's saying money's tight and will remain so speaks volumes.

Volumes that may not be as memorable as anything Marcus Porcius Cato might have uttered, but volumes that make it clear that for the foreseeable future, Carthage must pay its own way.

That's about it, but here's the whole thing if you're interested ...

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 8:20:51 AM::
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AUDIO: Anthony Boden

A while back we mentioned Anthony Boden, who seems to regularly appear on ABC in Tasmania, chatting about matters classical. The subject this week is Herodotus (requires RealPlayer).

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 8:11:36 AM::
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NUNTII: Herod in the News

A short item, quoted in its entirety, from the Guardian seems to be of interest, even if some of us aren't sure of the context of its impetus:

David Blunkett's insistence that he didn't go into politics to be the King Herod of the Labour party ignores the fact that some modern historians say the pro-Roman king of the small Jewish state wasn't quite as bad as he was painted at the time.

They agree that his reign started with bloodshed and ended in terror but they also point to the fact that he rebuilt Jerusalem and built a splendid new port at Caeseara to rival Alexandria.

They agree that the slaughter of the infants in Bethlehem as told in the Gospel of Matthew was probably totally in character with the later Herod, but say the story is not known from any other source.

They also question the scale of the massacre. The Greek liturgy claimed that Herod had killed 14,000 boys, the Syrians 64,000, and many medieval authors say 144,000 infants were involved. Twentieth century writers pointed out that Bethlehem was a small town in the first century BC and say figures of between 15 and 20, or even as low as six, might be nearer the mark.

They argue that the Bethlehem killings have to be seen in the wider context of his reign and that his true crime was to act as "a friend and ally of the Romans" rather than as a Jewish king when the chips were down. The fact that he was a pagan and not Jewish fuelled the bitter hatred.

Although few wept at his downfall history still records him as King Herod the Great.

Incidentally, while on the page wherein this piece originated, I noticed that the Guardian's searchable political database is called "Ask Aristotle" ... Poking around that, one finds (among other things) some basic info about Blunkett, along with a photo, which possibly does look 'Herodian', although I can't seem to find an image of Herod anywhere ...

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 8:06:17 AM::
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GOSSIP: Achilles' achilles

Well, if folks on the set of Mel Gibson's Passion get hit by lightning, the following seems rather apropos for Troy:

According to industry reports, Aniston's husband Brad Pitt injured himself on the set of his upcoming sword-and-sandal epic, "Troy."

Pitt, 39, was seen hobbling around Malta on crutches after tearing his left Achilles tendon. In the film, he portrays the nigh-invincible Greek hero Achilles whose only weakness is one heel.
Luckily for fans, Pitt's injury does not have the same fatal consequences that it did for Achilles. Pitt reportedly tore the tendon during a strenuous action sequence.

Source ...

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 7:50:56 AM::
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NUNTII: Stolen Antiquities Returned to Greece

From the Athenian News Agency:

Authorities in the city of Ingolstadt, Bavaria on Wednesday returned to
Greece some 13 stolen ancient artifacts that had been found and confiscated by German authorities in the city's railway station in 1999.

The recovered antiquities were handed over to Corinth's Antiquities Curator by Ingolstadt's general prosecutor Wolfram Herrle and will be transported back to Greece by plane. Their final destination is the Archaeological Museum of Corinth.

They include 10 pottery vessels and two clay statuettes dating from the
Mycenaean era and a copper vessel from the Byzantine era. According to the culture ministry's calculations, the 13 items originate from an illegal
excavation at the ancient cemetery of Athikion in Corinth and were
illegally exported from Greece by antiquities smugglers whose identity has
not been discovered.

The items are in very good condition and, according to the archaeologists
that examined them in 2000, they are important for advancing knowledge on Mycenean-era pottery techniques in Corinth, while the single Byzantine
artifact is unique and reveals a wealth of information of Corinthian
metalwork in that era.

The origins of the artifacts were traced by identifying the residues of
earth found upon them.


::Saturday, November 29, 2003 7:45:37 AM::
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CHATTER: Apologies

Apologies again for missing the regular posting schedule ... last night the various influenzas, allergies, and report cards all caught up to me with the result that I came home and slept for twelve hours straight. We'll catch up over the course of the day ...

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 7:42:49 AM::
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AWOTV: On TV Today

4.00 p.m. |DTC| The Emperor of the Steppes
"In a huge undertaking, researchers and archaeologists working
in Upper Mongolia unearthed the sepulcher of the Emperor of the
Steppes. This expedition may reveal insight into Mongolian
history dating back to the second century BC."

::Saturday, November 29, 2003 7:40:50 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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