~ On the Death of Cicero
As I try to get Radio to post (haven't had this problem in ages!), I
might as well post this poem by one Cornelius Severus (fl. 38 B.C.) on
the death of Cicero, from the Oxford Book of Latin verse (at Bartleby) ... a nice little translation excercise:
ORAQVE magnanimum spirantia paene uirorum
in rostris iacuere suis; sed enim abstulit omnis,
tamquam sola foret, rapti Ciceronis imago.
tunc redeunt animis ingentia consulis acta
iurataeque manus deprensaque foedera noxae
patriciumque nefas extinctum: poena Cethegi
deiectusque redit uotis Catilina nefandis.
quid fauor adscitus, pleni quid honoribus anni
profuerant, sacris et uota quid artibus aetas?
abstulit una dies aeui decus, ictaque luctu
conticuit Latiae tristis facundia linguae.
unica sollicitis quondam tutela salusque,
egregium semper patriae caput, ille senatus
uindex, ille fori, legum iurisque togaeque
publica uox, saeuis aeternum obmutuit armis!
informis uoltus sparsamque cruore nefando
canitiem sacrasque manus operumque ministras
tantorum pedibus ciuis proiecta superbis
proculcauit ouans nec lubrica fata deosque
respexit! nullo luet hoc Antonius aeuo.
hoc nec in Emathio mitis uictoria Perse,
nec te, dire Syphax, non fecerat hoste Philippo;
inque triumphato ludibria iuncta Iugurtha
afuerunt, nostraeque cadens ferus Hannibal irae
membra tamen Stygias tulit inuiolata sub umbras.
::Tuesday, December 07, 2004 5:46:27 AM::
~ This Day in Ancient History
ante diem vii idus decembres
- 43 B.C. -- death of Cicero (Marcus Tullius Cicero) as he half-heartedly fled the proscription of Marcus Antonius et al.
::Tuesday, December 07, 2004 5:44:36 AM::
~ Bush as Alexander?
An editorial in the Miami Herald ponders, inter alia:
But what about the larger questions? Is it fair to compare Alexander to Bush? Babylon then to Baghdad now? It's too soon to tell. Even 2,327 years after his death, Alexander's reputation is in flux. Stone's movie won't add shine to the Macedonian's star, but yet another Alexander movie, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, is in the works; maybe that flick will help.
But one truism about Alexander endures: He was an A+ general, but he flunked as an empire builder. When he died, his territorial holdings were divided and soon dissipated. By contrast, his successors, the Romans, determined to consolidate as well as conquer, used their administrative skills to build an empire that lasted for centuries; they left a far greater legacy than Alexander.
So back to Bush parallels: Alexander's goals were mostly plunder and everlasting glory. Bush, on the other hand, sees himself as a liberator -- although he wouldn't mind being remembered as ``great.''
The 43rd president has staked his presidency on the democratic transformation of the entire Middle East, not just Iraq. He has launched a Greater Middle East Initiative to bring freedom to the Arabs. If that effort succeeds, he will have done, in his way, what the Romans did but Alexander failed in doing -- make permanent the political changes achieved on the battlefield. And though results from Bush's initiative are meager so far, it's still early in the process. The Iraqis haven't held their first election yet. Even Rome -- which wrote the book on domain management -- wasn't built in a day.
But Alexander's main foe, way back when, was the Persian Empire. That's right: present-day Iran. Today, a new Persian Empire seems likely to acquire nuclear weapons. Will Bush smite them as Alexander did? Will he transform Iran, as he has transformed Iraq? The raw material for a future epic is playing out before our eyes.
::Tuesday, December 07, 2004 5:29:53 AM::
Seems to be a slow day today, so we can give a quick rundown of what's happening elsewhere ... over at Hobbyblog, the posting of coins continues unabated (the more you look at coins, the more you realize that ancient divinities were rarely 'empty handed') ... About.com's Ancient History Guide is highlighting her dictionary/etymology resources page ... there's a handful of new posts on various subjects over at Classics in Contemporary Culture ... Classicist Bruce Thornton comments on the political spin in the Alexander flick over at Victor Davis Hanson's site ... MG continues to impress with a handful of new posts per day (interesting one on "hatred and envy") ... in case I haven't mentioned it, Martialis is back to posting and translating (up to 2.63 now) ... the most recent three posts at Campus Mawrtius all touch on the state of academic writing in some way ... that's about it for this a.m..
::Tuesday, December 07, 2004 5:20:30 AM::
~ Conquests of Alexander Conquered?
Well now that the movie is over, About.com's Military History Guide seems a bit slow off the mark with his page of links to sites about the conquests of Alexander. Unfortunately, the last three or four links go to a site that was taken down at the request of Peter Green (a quick look at the Wayback Machine suggests heavy plagiarization) ... so why does the guide still link to them and not the excellent resources listed by Ancient History Guide N.S. Gill?
::Tuesday, December 07, 2004 4:54:14 AM::
~ More From Bulgaria
... and this time, it's not Kitov who is hyping it. From the Sofia News Agency:
Two gold earrings were found during excavation works near the Black Sea city of Nessebar.
The jewellery belonged to a woman buried during the Hellenic period IV- III century B.C., Tanya Dimova, chief of the Nessebar Museum announced.
The Bulgarian archaeologists were surprised by the high quality of the metal - 24 carats. The earrings were made by an extreme professional and had a lion's head. The archaeologists are expecting to find more jewellery as at present they are excavating a second tomb.
The two tombs were part of the necropolis of ancient Mesemvria where most of the rich people were laid to rest in the past times, the head of the Nessebar Museum explained.
::Tuesday, December 07, 2004 4:43:41 AM::
~ JOB: Greek Paleography Fellowship @ Oxford
DILTS-LYELL RESEARCH FELLOWSHIP IN GREEK PALAEOGRAPHY
Oxford University, in association with Lincoln College, invites applications from postdoctoral scholars for the Dilts-Lyell Research Fellowship in Greek Palaeography with effect from 1st October 2005, tenable for four years and non-renewable. The appointment will be funded by the Dilts benefaction to Lincoln College together with the J.P.R. Lyell bequest to the University. The salary scale offered is at present in the range £27,116 to £35,883 p.a. The post carries full Senior Common rights at Lincoln College as well as other benefits including generous research support from the Lyell Electors. The successful candidate will have access to single occupancy accommodation in College at his/her own expense or,alternatively, an office in College.
The Fellow will be expected to undertake advanced research in the field of Greek Palaeography and Textual Criticism and to contribute to the study of palaeography across the University. In addition, the Fellow will be expected to give a number of lectures or classes per year for the University, to supervise graduate students both in College and elsewhere in the University, to assist with the Undergraduate Admissions exercise in December and where appropriate to provide undergraduate tutorial teaching.
Further particulars are available from the College website, www.lincoln.ox.ac.uk, or from the College Secretary, Lincoln College, Oxford OX1 3DR (tel. +44 (0)1865 279801, fax +44 (0) 1856 279802, email email@example.com). Applicants are asked to submit seven copies of the following, by Thursday 6th January 2005: a letter of application which must include the names of three referees, who should be asked to submit their references by the closing date; a research proposal of no more than 1,000 words; and a detailed curriculum vitae. Applications by email are NOT acceptable.
Lincoln College and Oxford University are Equal Opportunities Employers
... seen on the Classicists list
::Tuesday, December 07, 2004 4:33:28 AM::
~ AWOTV: On TV Today
8.00 p.m. |DISCC| Mysterious Death of Cleopatra
The daughter of an incestuous marriage, Cleopatra married and murdered her brothers, inheriting the throne of Egypt at age 17; her life was filled with the unexplained; experts reexamine the circumstances of Cleopatra's untimely death.
11.00 p.m. |HINT| The Odyssey of Troy
What is it about the legendary city that 3,200 years after its fall, we still try to unravel Troy's mysteries? Scholars attempt to answer the question by researching the Greek poet Homer, possibly one of the greatest poets in Western Europe's history, and his epic tale of love and war, and comparing his text to archaeological sites.
DISCC = Discovery Civilization (Canada)
HINT = History International
::Tuesday, December 07, 2004 4:31:04 AM::