Latest update: 4/4/2005; 5:53:26 AM
quidquidquid bene dictum est ab ullo, meum est ~ Seneca

NUNTII: Roman Ship Discovery

An AP report which first surfaced on a Canadian radio station's site, of all places:

Italian archeologists have discovered a Roman ship and hundreds of amphorae dating to the second century during excavation works for a new subway in the southern city of Naples.

The discoveries, which were detailed on Thursday, will help shed light on ancient life in the Mediterranean port city, the archeologists said. "They will help us understand the circulation of goods in Naples and the city's everyday life," said Daniela Giampaola, an archeologist in charge of the excavations.

The 13-metre-deep digging turned up wooden pieces belonging to piers in the one-time port, as well as intact amphorae and other crockery pieces, believed to have fallen off the ships while being unloaded.

Amphorae are slender, two-handled terra cotta storage containers popular in Roman times to ship or store wine, condiments and other popular items.

Also found by the ship were soles of seafarers' shoes. Experts said that soles were either lost or tossed away when the shoes were no longer good.

The 10-metre-long vessel sank, probably due to floods, in the second century, said Giampaola. It is expected to be well preserved, thanks to the silt that created an airless environment that prevented decomposition.

However, it will take months to take it out of the mud.

Giampaola said that over the course of the centuries waves of mud, silt and landslides from surrounding hills have filled up the basin and created a swamp.

The discoveries were the latest to emerge from the excavation works. Elsewhere in the city, the digging has turned up remnants of a building also dating to the Roman Empire, which is still being excavated, and a 12th-century fountain.

City officials are considering setting up a museum near one of the new subway stations to host the artifacts.

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 8:20:37 PM::
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NUNTII: Did Socrates Have Asperger's?

Some noggin fodder from the Scotsman:

Well-known historical figures including Socrates, Charles Darwin and Andy Warhol almost certainly suffered from an extreme form of autism, a leading specialist claimed today.

It has already been suggested that Newton and Einstein displayed symptoms of Asperger’s syndrome – a severe strain of the condition which usually affects men.

But Michael Fitzgerald, a professor of child and adolescent psychiatry at Trinity College, Dublin suggested the number of high profile individuals with Asperger’s is much higher than previously thought.


In a retrospective diagnosis, taken by examining the biographies of certain historical figures and comparing their behavioural patterns with his own patients, Prof Fitzgerald claims that W.B. Yeats, Lewis Carroll and former Irish prime minister Eamon de Valera all had autism disorders.

“Asperger’s syndrome provides a plus – it makes people more creative,” he said.

“People with it are generally hyper-focused, very persistent workaholics who tend to see things from detail to global rather than looking at the bigger picture first and then working backwards, as most people do.
The claims are made in Prof Fitzgerald’s new book: In Autism and Creativity: Is There a Link Between Autism in Men and Exceptional Ability?

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 6:59:56 PM::
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NUNTII: Roman Republican Coins

An interesting item from the Nottingham Evening Post:

One of the oldest and rarest collections of coins in the country has had its most thorough check-up in more than 2,200 years.

Coin enthusiast Grenville Chamberlain has just completed two years of measuring and identifying 684 pieces from the early Roman Republic - before the Roman emperors or the invasion of Britain.

Some were minted about 280BC, weigh more than half-a-pound, and feature classical images of dolphins, scallop shells and thunderbolts.

They were excavated in 1885 from ruins of the Temple of Diana at Nemi, on the outskirts of Rome, by Lord Savile of Rufford Abbey when he was the British ambassador to Rome.

After returning, he donated the find to Nottingham Castle, to boost its antiquities collection, where it has remained.

Speaking about Mr Chamberlain, Ann Inscker, manager of Nottingham Museums and Galleries' history and archaeology team, said: "He's an absolute wonder and has really put his heart and soul into this project. He calls himself an amateur but he really knows his stuff and he's a real treasure."

She said that the collection was very rare. "The Romans hadn't even infiltrated Britain by then. They're also rare because they were cast, not hammered. I'm sure the British Museum have some similar coins - but not a collection like this."

Museum staff hope to be able to put the hoard - which attracts archaeological scholars from abroad - on display soon, although some are already on show in the Castle.

And there are also fresh excavations planned for the site where they were found.

Mrs Inscker said: "Representatives of the British School in Rome and Professor Coarelli of the University of Perugia, Italy, are currently researching the site and will commence excavations in June.

More ...

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 6:50:49 PM::
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CHATTER: Alexander the Great series?

Just as I'm about to shut down the laptop and get ready for work, the scan picks up this interesting tidbit in a gossipy piece about sisters of assorted star types:

Hilary Duff's older sister Haylie, 18, has filmed the series Alexander the Great, which is being shopped around to networks, and is recording a solo rock album. Being a Duff, she insists, doesn't make a showbiz career "easier or harder."

We'll have to keep our eye open ... probably both would be best.

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 6:01:12 AM::
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ante diem vi idus januarias

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 5:38:10 AM::
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BLOGWATCH @ Classical Values

Classical Values is primarily a political blog which strives to look at the U.S. through 'classical eyes'.  In its most recent post (January 6), it considers illegal immigration in light of Caracalla's policies on citizenship.

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 5:28:29 AM::
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HobbyBlog continues its daily display of Roman coins. In the past week or so, they've put up some photos of a very nice 106 B.C./B.C.E. denarius and a sesterius of Cornelia Salonina (wife of the emperor Galerius).

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 5:21:16 AM::
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NUNTII: Post Office Mottoes and Herodotus (redux)

KBCI, a television station in Boise Idaho, brings up the issue again:

In 484 B.C., the Greek historian Herodotus wrote  of postal workers in his ancient land: "Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these carriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds."

Back in September rogueclassicism dealt with the history of this phrase; the links there are still active ...

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 5:09:37 AM::
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AWOTV: On TV Today

5.00 p.m. |DCIVC| The Quest for the True Cross

8.00 p.m. |HISTC| The Conquests of Alexander
This series examines the great conquerors of the world and provides
new insights into their most compelling military achievements. Each
episode combines graphics with recreations to analyze every facet of
their famous battles and conquests. Some of the conquerors profiled
include Genghis Khan, Hannibal, Ramses, Alexander, Cortez, the
Spartans and the Romans.

9.00 p.m. |HINT| Foot Soldier: The Romans
Host Richard Karn looks at the Roman legionnaires, who conquered and
dominated most of the known world for 500 years, and left behind a
legacy of language, culture, architecture, and government.

DCIVC = Discovery Civilization (Canada)

HISTC = History Television (Canada)

HINT = History International

::Thursday, January 08, 2004 4:53:55 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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