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Maia Atlantis: Ancient World Blogs -

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     A senior Syrian official says the US and France are carrying out illegal excavations in ancient sites in northern Syria with the help of Kurdish militants (Press TV, ' Official: US, France looting artifacts in northern Syria'', Mon Dec 10, 2018) 
    Much of the digging work is conducted on the Um al-Sarj mountain near Manbij, head of Syria's Directorate-General for Museums and Antiquities Mahmoud Hammoud told SANA news agency Sunday. Manbij is controlled by Kurdish militants who are heavily armed and supported by US and French troops illegally deployed to northern Syria. According to SANA, the Um al-Sarj mountain in the northern countryside of Aleppo is rich in artifacts. US troops and their allies, it said, are carrying out similar excavations in the ancient souk of Manbij. "The excavations, looting and robbery are also taking place in the archaeological tombs in the eastern side of Manbij," he said. Hammoud said the diggings are a criminal act and a violation of the Syrian sovereignty. His department, he said, is contacting international organizations to condemn the looting of Syria's cultural heritage.
    The US has been conducting airstrikes against what it calls Daesh targets inside Syria since September 2014 without any authorization from the Damascus government or a UN mandate.

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    The new course book on Virgil, Aeneid 11 (Pallas & Camilla) includes Latin text, study aids with vocabulary, and commentary.

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    Review of Matthijs Den Dulk, Between Jews and Heretics: Refiguring Justin Martyr's Dialogue with Trypho. London; New York: 2018. Pp. 174. $140.00. ISBN 9780815373452.

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    Review of Saskia Peels, Hosios: A Semantic Study of Greek Piety. Mnemosyne. Supplements, 387. Leiden; Boston: 2015. Pp. xiii, 295. $149.00. ISBN 9789004294639.

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    Review of Jean-Yves Empereur, Tony Koželj, Olivier Picard, Manuela Wurch-Koželj, The Hellenistic Harbour of Amathus: Underwater Excavations, 1984-1986. Volume 1, Architecture and History. Études Chypriotes, 19. Paris; Athens: 2018. Pp. 172. €40,00. ISBN 9782869582934.

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    Review of Jean-Marie Olivier, Supplément au Répertoire des bibliothèques et des catalogues de manuscrits grecs (2 vols.). Corpus Christianorum, Series Graeca. Turnhout: 2018. Pp. lxxxiv, 1468. €350,00. ISBN 9782503577180 (1° vol.), 9782503577197 (2° vol.).

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    Musonius Rufus Workshop
    10.00-5.00, 12 April 2019
    Room 102, Senate House,
    University of London,
    Malet Street, London, WC1E 7HU

    Call for Papers:

    The Roman Stoics have received renewed attention in recent years, both from scholars and from the wider public looking for guidance in everyday life. Seneca, Epictetus, and Marcus Aurelius are now being worked on and read in ways that would have few would have expected a couple of decades ago. Lesser known Stoics such as Hierocles and Cornutus have also benefitted from new studies and translations. The poor relation, though, is Musonius Rufus, who has not yet benefited from a similar resurgence in fortune.

    To address this undeserved oversight, we invite proposals for papers for an informal workshop dedicated to Musonius. We welcome submissions relating to any aspect of his thought; possible themes could include philosophies of gender, adapting Stoicism for a Roman audience, politics and exile, the role of the sage, textual traditions, practice versus theory, methods of moral education, and asceticism, although these suggestions are offered as prompts rather than as limitations.

    We hope that the workshop will offer an opportunity for those with interests in Musonius and Roman Stoicism more widely to come together, make new contacts, and think collectively about further research and publication collaborations.

    We welcome submissions from people at any stage in their career, from doctoral students and early career researchers through to more established academics. We hope to be able to offer bursaries to those who might need financial assistance with travel or caring responsibilities in order to attend. The event will take place on the first floor of the University of London’s Senate House, which has lift access. If anyone has specific access or dietary requirements, please contact us and we will do our best to cater for them.

    Abstracts should be no more than 500 words long. Presentations will be around 30 minutes long, and followed by discussion. The deadline for abstracts is 11th February 2019.

    If you are unable to attend the workshop but would like to be kept informed of future developments, please do get in touch.

    Abstracts and any questions should be sent to the organizers:

    Dr Liz Gloyn (Liz.Gloyn at, Department of Classics, Royal Holloway, University of London
    Dr John Sellars (John.Sellars at, Department of Philosophy, Royal Holloway, University of London

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  • 12/11/18--02:03: Digital Humanities at Work
  • I have been meaning to blog about HumaReC for some time. HumaReC stands for Humanities Research and Continuous Publishing, and represents a Digital Humanities project related specifically to the New Testament, spearheaded by Claire Clivaz, a major figure in this field. But recently, when Ancient World Online drew attention to Sara Schulthess’ Open Access book […]

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    This book 'is the first to encompass the vast history of how living things procreate, from the banks of the ancient Nile to the fertility clinics of today.'

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  • 12/11/18--04:01: Gift Ideas for 2018
  • Some valuable resources became available this year that I thought I might briefly summarize, either as a gift-buying guide or as additions to your own wish list.

    Let me start with the Lexham Geographic Commentary to the imageGospels. Originally released for Logos Bible Software, it is now available in print. The volume is loaded with 48 essays written by people who have lived and breathed biblical geography and archaeology for many years, including Barry Beitzel (editor), Benjamin Foreman, Gordon Franz, J. Carl Laney, Chris McKinny, Elaine Phillips, A.D. Riddle, and Paul Wright. I wrote two of the essays—one on the disciples’ statement about the “magnificent stones and wonderful buildings” of the Temple and the other on the location of the swine dive in the Sea of Galilee. I think that this book should win an award for its unique contribution. It’s on sale now for $25, including free shipping, plus you get the ebook for free. Or Amazon has the print book alone for $27.

    The ESV Archaeology Study Bible was released earlier this year after many years of research, writing, and production. This up-to-date resource is filled with excellent sidebars and commentary notes. You can see my earlier description here. It’s available now at Amazon for $42.Image result for esv archaeology study bible

    Randall Price and Wayne House wrote the Zondervan Handbook of Biblical Archaeology. I’ve heard that it’s gone through several printings already. I hope to offer a longer review here on the blog in the next few months. My expectation is that it will be very useful to both Bible teachers and students alike.

    The National Geographic Atlas of the Bible was released in June. I haven’t purchased it yet, but the listing tells me that it is 112 pages long and includes 17 maps. One Amazon reviewer says that the text is written from a minimalist perspective.

    The Biblical Archaeology Society store has a sale now, including free shipping on orders of $50 or more. Two new books of most interest to me are A Walk to Caesarea: A Historical-Archaeological Perspective, by Joseph Patrich ($34), and Megiddo-Armageddon: The Story of the Canaanite and Israelite City, by David Ussishkin ($60)

    Filament is a new resource that I saw at a recent conference that combines a print Bible with digital content on your phone or tablet. The printed book has the Bible text only, and the accompanying app provides study notes, photos, and videos.

    Doug Greenwold at Preserving Bible Times has just released a new book on John 4 entitled Jesus Engages a Samaritan Woman. Shipping is free through the end of the year.ruth-dvd-frontback-500

    Finally, I’d encourage you to consider for yourself or others the newest resources created this year by us at We have a limited audience and every sale helps us to continue forward with the next project. This year we released Ruth and Psalm 23 in the Photo Companion series ($29 and $24, respectively, or $39 for both). We also created a beautiful photo book entitled Psalm 23: A Photo Commentary, available from Amazon for $20. The latest volume of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands is Persia, available for two more days at the introductory price of $25.

    If you shop on Amazon, use the code GIFTBOOK18 to get $5 off a $20 book order through 12/21.

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    Astarté. Estudios del Oriente Próximo y el Mediterráneo

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    Astarté es una revista internacional de periodicidad anual, que albergará trabajos inéditos relacionados con temas históricos, lingüísticos, arqueológicos, religiosos y artísticos de los pueblos del Oriente Próximo y de la Cuenca Mediterránea durante la Antigüedad, la Tardo-antigüedad y la Edad Media. Las lenguas de trabajo de la revista son alemán, español, francés, inglés e italiano.

    Num. 1 (2018)

    Tabla de contenidos


    Anas Al Khabour
    Amir Ashur, Keren Abbou Hershkovits
    Federico Corriente
    José Martínez Delgado
    Carlos Martínez Carrasco
    Juan Pedro Monferrer-Sala
    Ramadan Ibrahim Mohamed Mohamed
    Gregorio del Olmo Lete

    Notas bibliográficas

    Faiad Barbash


    Monferrer-Sala, Juan Pedro, Apocalipsis del Pseudo Atanasio [ApPsAt(ar)II]. Edición, traducción anotada y estudio, col. Barcino–Monographica Orientalia, 4 (Barcelona: Universitat de Barcelona, 2016), 221 pp. ISBN: 978-84-475-3967-3
    Carlos Martínez Carrasco
    Greg Fisher (ed.), Arabs and Empires before Islam (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015); pp. xxvii+580. ISBN: 978-0-19-965452-9
    Juan Pedro Monferrer-Sala
    Ferrer Albelda, E. – Pereira Delgado, A. (eds.), Profecía y adivinación en las religiones de la Antigüedad. SPAL Monografías XXIV (Sevilla: Editorial Universidad de Sevilla, 2017). pp. 171. ISBN: 978-8-44-721915-5
    Israel Muñoz Gallarte
    Van Doorn-Harde, Nelly (ed.), Copts in context. Negotiating Identity, Tradition and Modernity (South Carolina: University of South Carolina Press, 2017); pp. 283. ISBN: 978-61117-784-8
    Lourdes Bonhome Pulido


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    Gum won’t really sit in your stomach for years, but it can preserve human DNA for millennia....

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    I really dislike the concept of branding. In particular, I dislike the idea that brands have value and that there is a responsibility to the value inherent in a brand particularly in the humanities. Over the past few years, I’ve been confronted by a number of individuals who view the brand as major part of their responsibility toward public humanities institutions. To my mind, the investment in the brand – whether financial, intellectual, strategic, or emotional – has produced a kind of conservatism.  While I’d never suggest that these individuals valued the brand above content, there is a tendency to use the concept of the brand and its definitions as a way to create barriers to collaboration or even prioritize risk taking because, in the end, social and historical capital that has accumulated around the brand matters.  

    At the same time, as I take on the role of editor of North Dakota Quarterly and sit in an office surrounded by 85 years of the journal and am incredibly aware of the history and legacy of the publication. As we move from being self published to being published by University of Nebraska Press, we have a chance to refresh our cover and interior design. I intentionally asked that we try to evoke some of the design elements during the Quarterly’s heyday under Bob Lewis in the late-1990s and early-21st century. (This is a nice example of it). Despite liking some of our more adventurous approaches to layout – including columns and a volume designed “Tête-bêche” – I got into my head that a more consistent approach might make the journal easier to understand and consume… in other words, ugh, branding.


    I also really liked the cover of our recent issue (84.1/2) dedicated to Transnationalism with it’s full width image and was pleased that UNP looked at that cover as a possible template for future NDQs. We need to find a cover image that has the same appeal as Marc-Antoine Frébutte’s “Waiting for the Train,” but I think that’s possible. UNP also played a bit with the NDQ logo while keeping its iconic Davida font. Here’s one example of what they’ve shared:

    NDQ Cover Sample

    Before I knew it, I was thinking about BRANDING and what was important to preserve in NDQ’s identity so that our readers and contributors recognize that despite the changes, we are going to maintain as much of the traditional NDQ identity as possible. I still don’t like branding or the idea of investing in the brand, but I suppose in this case it has a function of reassuring our audience that the core values of the Quarterly will remain intact. 




    I still hate branding, though.

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    Le 11 décembre 2018, Laetitia Graslin-Thomé donnera une conférence intitulée « Recent research on the economy of Hellenistic Babylonia [recherches récentes sur l’économie de la Babylonie hellénistique ] » à l’Université de Freiburg-am-Breisgau (Allemagne) dans le cadre du projet ECR Economic Development, Frontier Zones and Inter-Imperiality in the Afro-Eurasian World Region, 300 BCE to 300 CE. La conférence aura lieu au 22 Bismarckallee (3e étage) de 15h30 à 17h30.

    Illustration : Titre de propriété et exemption du grand prêtre du temple de  Esangila (MET, DP263626 ; CC).

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    Fragmentology: A Journal for the Study of Medieval Manuscript Fragments

    Fragmentology is an international, peer-reviewed Open Access journal, dedicated to publishing scholarly articles and reviews concerning medieval manuscript fragments. Fragmentology welcomes submissions, both articles and research notes, on any aspect pertaining to Latin and Greek manuscript fragments in the Middle Ages.
    Founded in 2018 as part of Fragmentarium, an international research project at the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, and the Zeno Karl Schindler Foundation, Fragmentology is owned and published by Codices Electronici AG and controlled by the Editorial Board in service to the scholarly community. Authors of articles, research notes, and reviews published in Fragmentology retain copyright over their works and have agreed to publish them in open access under a Creative Commons Attribution license. Submissions are free, and Fragmentology does not require payment or membership from authors or institutions.


    Published December 2018, DOI: 10.24446/2nbp


    Printing instructions: For the most handsome print copy, we recommend that Fragmentology be printed on A4 or Letter paper, 2 pages per sheet.

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    The Syrian Foreign Ministry condemned what it said were illegal excavation works by US, French and Turkish troops as well as their local allies in areas of Syria under their control, including ancient sites at Manbij, Afrin, Idlib, Hasaka, and Raqqa. Credit: FARS News AgencySpeaking to the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA), a ministry official said that there had been an increase in excavation work, looting, and theft of ancient cultural...

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