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Maia Atlantis: Ancient World Blogs - http://planet.atlantides.org/maia

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    I recently listened to two science fiction books with religious themes as audiobooks. One is Phillip K. Dick’s VALIS, and the other is Michel Faber’s The Book of Strange New Things. What follows in this post and the next will contain spoilers about both, but hopefully not such as will ruin anyone’s enjoyment of either. After all, […]

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    One observable phenomenon in recent years has been that some recovered material was derived, not from an unexcavated archaeological site, but from archaeological museums and stores. This is explored in my latest column, 'Context Matters', for The Journal of Art Crime 20 (Fall 2018), entitled 'Thefts from museums and archaeological stores'. While many of the pieces come from collections in Italy, others are recorded from Greece, Egypt, and Libya. 

    Bookmark and Share so Your Real Friends Know that You Know

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    An important Christian site has just been discovered in Cyprus with mosaics which bear clear...

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    While examining a skull from an ancient burial ground in a pre-Columbian village in Panama, Nicole...

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  • 12/22/18--06:09: Weekend Roundup
  • The Ultra-Orthodox are upset that the French government won’t allow entrance into the Tomb of the Kings in Jerusalem. The French claim that they have renovated the site and with the right assurances, they will open it to the public.

    A long tunnel has been covertly dug underneath the “Tomb of David” on Mount Zion and now some people are mad.

    The large number of tourists visiting the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem has led to the development of an app that will handle reservations.

    “The inauguration ceremony of Egypt’s new Greco-Roman Museum [in Alexandria] will be held by the end of 2019.”

    Three ancient cities in Crete are the focus of an exhibit at the Museum of Cycladic Art in Athens, Greece.

    Harvey Mudd College is giving its Cypriot artifacts to the University of Cyprus.

    Don McNeeley shares a report on the 2018 annual meeting of the Near East Archaeological Society. You can join the society here.

    The video is now online for the 2018 Plenary Address for the ASOR Annual Meeting: “Between Looters, Private Collectors, and Warlords: Does Archaeology Stand a Chance?” by Hélène Sader, Professor of Archaeology, American University of Beirut.

    Tali Erickson-Gini is on The Book and the Spade talking about the Timna Park excavations and the opportunity for the public to volunteer.

    Wayne Stiles compares Peter’s boast in the Upper Room to his failure in the Garden of Gethsemane to find application today.

    That “ark of the covenant” in the church in Ethiopia—it’s a replica.

    Rick Lanser believes he has evidence that supports the birth of Jesus on Nisan 1, 6 BC.

    Ferrell Jenkins’s favorite photos this week include Hasankef, the Roman road near Saglikli, and Riblah.

    Justin Taylor interviews the filmmaker who has created “The Chosen,” the first-ever multi-season drama about the life of Christ.

    HT: Joseph Lauer, Agade, Ted Weis


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    WordPress has pretty much conquered the world, as far as blog engines are concerned.  Who uses anything else now?  Fortunately, to the best of my knowledge, WordPress has not adopted the evil practices of other ‘net monopolies and started to censor content for political reasons.  But the monopoly cannot be good for any of us.

    I noticed a few days ago that my blog menu no longer works on my Android  smartphone.  My theme – underskeleton – did once!  But somewhere along the WordPress update schedule, the developers broke it.  Nor is this the first time.  I had to move away from my original theme “unnamed” for the same reason.  “Underskeleton” has not been updated in a year, so plainly it is time to move.  But to what?

    Most WordPress themes these days seem to be aimed at websites, not blogs.  The WordPress standard themes are no better.

    I have just spent an hour experimenting with themes until my patience was exhausted.  What I want is simple enough – two columns, my pages not treated as navigation, the side panel accessible on mobile, a header image, and reasonable typography.  But I was unable to find anything I liked.

    During the week someone mentioned to me how complicated it is becoming to create web content.  There are a million options, and even those of us who are IT professionals are drowning in the flow of information.  Yet at the same time simple things become impossible.

    It’s very like how Microsoft have destroyed Visual Basic.  You just can’t get simple stuff done these days.

    Likewise the Contact Form 7 is broken.  I’ve used it for years.  But the last update played havoc, and sent me loads of spam.  Why???!  I fell back on my old Tertullian.org feedback form.  This too has had its vicissitudes – the endless upgrades to perl on the server keep removing support for bits of code that I used when I wrote it.  But mostly I can fix it easily.  WordPress on the other hand is a monster.

    I sat down here over an hour ago to write a post on Cotelerius.  Instead I’ve been messing with techno-rubbish.

    Thank you, WordPress.


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    In my last post I looked into John of Nicaea – or John of Nike, as we ought to call him – and found the full version of the De nativitate Dei text that Migne quoted briefly in the PG 33 to show that Cyril of Jerusalem wrote to Pope Julius I to find out the day of Christ’s birthday.  The story was spurious, of course, and I discussed it in the Dubious Claims post.

    Migne also quoted another version of the story, with a reference to  Cotelier, Patres Apostolici, i.316 (1724).  Let us see, then, what the original has to say.

    It is easy enough to find the Cotelier volume, so long as you ignore the title above and search for “SS. Patrum qui temporibus apostolicis floruerunt, Barnabae, Clementis”…, the actual title of the work, and use Cotelerius, the Latinized form.  The 17-18th century habit of giving books very long names, which inevitably were abbreviated, is a problem until you are aware of it; whereupon you search for the author on Google, and hope to find what his works were, and so guess at the real title.  The 1724 edition is a reprint, but volume 1, p.316 is here.

    The passage is again longer than Migne prints, which ended with “…among many a murmur arose”, three lines from the bottom of column 1 in the page image above.  The continuation tells us that Gregory the Theologian quelled the objections to dividing the festival into two parts.

    But even this longer passage clearly has been abbreviated.  Where does it come from?

    Well, Cotelier tells us that it comes from a Paris manuscript, with the shelfmark “Regius 969”.  This is the shelfmark in the old royal library.  Of course the modern Bibliothèque Nationale Français has its own system.

    Older literature often uses old shelfmarks.  The BNF online catalogue is not bad, but a search for “Regius 969” drew blank.  Fortunately Cotelier tells us that the “John of Nicaea” letter was edited by Combefis: “And in ms. Regius 969, from which the most learned Combefis published that work of John of Nicaea, there is another little narrative on the same subject which is not markedly different, where the bishop is called Juvenalis:…”.  Page 200, note 102 of Glen L. Thompson’s book on the correspondence of Pope Julius tells us about the letter of John of Nicaea – which is in the same ms., remember – that:

    …the letter, transmitted in the fifteenth century manuscript Paris, BN, gr. 900, was first edited by Combefis (1672).  Coustant, who reprints (coll. 83-86) Combefis’ text, notes (col. 83f) that it was transcribed “ex codice Regio olim 696, nunc 2428, pag. 149“.  The same text was taken over by Migne…

    So the current shelfmark of the manuscript is BNF gr. 900.  This is online here, although in a monochrome microfilm.  Thompson tells us (p.201) that our fragment is found on fol. 120 of the manuscript, under the title Ἀναγκαία διήγησις (=necessaria narratio, necessary narration), and so it is.

    The header in the right-column is visible even in this reproduction, followed by the Greek text printed by Cotelier.

    Sadly I can’t read the Greek text – my paleography is non-existent, and the image is poor – but Thompson says it is preceded by a note that attributes it to Juvenalis.

    Other short pieces precede and follow it.  Here is the BNF online catalogue:

    • (f.111)Anonymi de divinis mysteriis liber, e variis SS. PP. libris : Ἡ γὰρ σάρξ μου… ;
    • (119 v°)Anonymi de illis qui V. Testamenti libros de hebraica lingua in græcam converterunt ;
    • (120 v°)Petri Antiocheni epistola de azymis, ad Dominicum Gradensem ;
    • (128 v° et 149)Joannis, Nicæni archiep., ad Zachariam, magnæ Armeniæ catholicum, epistola de Christi nativitate ;
    • (135)Joannis, Hierosolymit. archiepiscopi, epistola ad Constantinum Caballinum de sacris imaginibus ;

    Note however that the catalogue actually fails to mention our piece, starting on fol. 120 recto.  (I have communicated this omission to the BNF).

    The catalogue does make clear why our piece is here.  It relates the Hebrew months to the Roman months; so naturally follows on from the anonymous item on fol. 119v.

    That’s about as far as we can take this.  It’s a revised item of the Pope Julius I story, in a 15th century manuscript, among a bunch of other short pieces.

    I’ve uploaded the two pages of the manuscript here:

    Does anybody with better paleography than me fancy transcribing the whole of our piece, starting at the top of folio 120 and continuing down to the next header in the right-hand column of the reverse of the page?


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    Fresh translations of the DCC core vocabularies

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    Five new translations of the DCC Core Latin and Ancient Greek Vocabularies are now up and downloadable in various formats (download buttons can be found at the bottom of the pages):  Greek-Italian, by Elisa Ruggieri, Latin-Italian by Gian Paolo Ciceri, Latin-Portuguese by Vittorio Pastelli, Latin-Spanish by Francisco Javier Pérez Cartagena, and Latin-Swedish by Johanna Koivunen. We at DCC are extremely grateful to these scholars for their work. Thanks are due also to developer Lara Frymark, who figured out a way to upload the lists efficiently. If you would like to contribute a new translation (no German yet?! What about French? Russian?) please see this page.


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     [Originally posted 29 August 2010.  Most recently updated 22 December  2018]

    Relegere: Studies in Religion and Reception 
    ISSN: 1179-7231

    Relegere has been established to promote and disseminate academic research on reception history, broadly understood, both within and across religious traditions.
    Relegere publishes studies of the transmission, reception, and effect of religion ideas, narratives, and images, within any medium - including but not limited to oral tradition, literature, drama, poetry, film, television, digital media, and the plastic arts - in relation to any group, sub-group, or individual in any religious tradition at any point in history.
    The journal has been founded on the conviction that the study of reception and religion must not limit itself to a mere cataloguing of influence or a simple recounting of the trajectories of foundational religious texts across time. Beyond this basic research, reception history needs to be more thoroughly understood on a conceptual and theoretical level; reception history must actively interrogate the taken-for-granted idea that foundational texts are somehow fixed, that their essential natures can be distinguished from their subsequent reception.
    In pursuit of this goal, Relegere actively encourages methodological, theoretical, and philosophical contributions relevant to reception history and religion, whether in relation to particular case studies or as stand-alone theoretical reflections.  Through the production of a coherent body of theoretical and practical reflection by and for scholars in very different fields and with very different interests, it is our hope that such an approach will facilitate a fruitful and ongoing discussion among scholars. 

    Vol 7, No 1–2 (2018)

    Special Issue: Transforming Biblical Animals

    Table of Contents

    Editorial

    Matthew Chrulew, Transforming Biblical Animals PDF
      1–7

    Articles

    On Behalf of Holy Creatures: Hélène Cixous Reads Leviticus, or, la lecture immonde PDF
    Yael Klangwisan 9–22
    Can the Prophecies be Trusted? PDF
    Vinciane Despret 23–38
    On Making Fleshly Difference: Humanity and Animality in Gregory of Nyssa PDF
    Eric Daryl Meyer 39–58
    C. S. Lewis, 2 Kings 19:35, and Mice PDF
    Michael J. Gilmour 59–71
    What's an Ark? PDF
    Mark Payne 73–91
    Peaceable Kingdoms in the Digital World PDF
    Beatrice Marovich 93–113
    Cerberus Bites Back: A Tale with Three Heads — the Syrophoenician and her Imitators PDF
    Alan Cadwallader 115–46
    The Politics of the Beast: Rewiring Revelation 17 PDF
    Hannah M. Strømmen 147–64

    Book Reviews

    The Book of Exodus: Composition, Reception, and Interpretation, edited by Thomas B. Dozeman, Craig A. Evans, and Joel N. Lohr PDF
    Zeb Farber 167-72
    The Bible Retold by Jewish Artists, Writers, Composers and Filmmakers, edited by Helen Leneman and Barry Dov Walfish PDF
    Sara M. Koenig 173-77
    Aliens and Strangers? The Struggle for Coherence in the Everyday Lives of Evangelicals, by Anna Strhan PDF
    Ibrahim Abraham 177-80
    If God Meant to Interfere: American Literature and the Rise of the Christian Right, by Christopher Douglas PDF
    Zhange Ni 181-84
    Stasis: Civil War as a Political Paradigm, by Giorgio Agamben PDF
    Beornn McCarthy 185-89
    A Materialism for the Masses: Saint Paul and the Philosophy of Undying Life, by Ward Blanton PDF
    Nikolai Blaskow 190-202
    Shakespeare and Early Modern Religion, edited by David Loewenstein and Michael Witmore PDF
    Iona Hine 202-9
    Words of Power: Reading Shakespeare and the Bible, by Jem Bloomfield PDF
    Michael Cop 209-12
    Children's Bibles in America: A Reception History of the Story of Noah's Ark in US Children's Bibles, by Russell W. Dalton PDF
    Kevin McGeough 212-15
    The High Middle Ages, edited by Kari E. Børresen and Adriana Valerio PDF
    Christine Axen 216-20
    Reading the Bible in the Middle Ages, edited by Jinty Nelson and Damien Kempf PDF
    Lena-Sofia Tiemeyer 220-26
    Patmos in the Reception History of the Apocalypse, by Ian Boxall PDF
    Michelle Fletcher 226-29
    The Bible and Art: Perspectives from Oceania, edited by Caroline Blyth and Nasili Vaka’uta PDF
    Jonathan Homrighausen 230-33
    John Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion, by Bruce Gordon PDF
    Jon Balserak 233-35
    Gender Hierarchy in the Qur'ān: Medieval Interpretations, Modern Responses, by Karen Bauer PDF
    William Shepard 235-39

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    The Bible in Effect

    The Bible in Effect series examines the reception and effect of the Bible and biblical literature. The ambit of the series encompasses reception and effects in any of the following subject areas: literature, politics, ecology, economics, history, politics, science, gender and sexuality, culture, race and postcoloniality, animality, philosophy, the arts, music, film, theatre, etc.

    The Bible, Zionism, and Palestine: The Bible's Role in Conflict and Liberation in Israel-Palestine

    Cover for The Bible, Zionism, and Palestine: The Bible's Role in Conflict and Liberation in Israel-Palestine
    Michael J. Sandford
    Volume editor

    Synopsis

    Contributors evaluate the divisive and liberatory influences and effects of the Bible on Zionism and Palestine-Israel and, conversely, the practice of biblical interpretation in a Post-Nakba world.
    E-book
    • Front matter: Title, Contents, Acknowledgements, Contributors Download E-book
    • Introduction: Bible, Zionism, Palestine - Michael J. Sandford Download E-book
    • Part 1: Varieties of Zionism Download E-book
    • 1. The Bible in the Service of Zionism: “We do not Believe in God, but he Nonetheless Promised us Palestine” - Ilan Pappé Download E-book
    • 2. Christian Zionism, the US, and the Middle East: A Sketch and Brief Analysis - Mark Finney Download E-book
    • 3. God's Earthly People: C. I. Scofield and the Blessing of Israel - Hilary Perry Download E-book
    • 4. “In No Country are the Prophecies of the Bible more Revered than in Scotland”: The Church of Scotland, Christian Zionists, and the Edinburgh Chovevei Zion - Mark Gilfillan Download E-book
    • 5. Canadian Christian Zionism: Hawkish Eccentrics - Ron Dart Download E-book
    • Part 2: Palestinian Liberation Theology Download E-book
    • 6. A Jewish Theology of Liberation - Dan Cohn-Sherbok Download E-book
    • 7. The Bible, Zionism, and Palestinian Liberation Theology - Naim S. Ateek Download E-book
    • 8. From Galilean Shores to Israeli Checkpoints: Jesus's Way of Non-Violence as Contemporary Challenge - Mary Grey Download E-book
    • 9. Repent, for the Dictatorship of God is at Hand! - James G. Crossley Download E-book
    • Part 3: Post-Nakba Biblical Studies Download E-book
    • 10. The Jewish Jesus and the Israel-Palestine Conflict: Palestinian Liberation Theology, Anti-Judaism, and Jewish-Christian Relations - Michael J. Sandford Download E-book
    • 11. Response to Michael Sandford: Palestinian Liberation Theology, Anti-Judaism, and Jewish-Christian Relations - Amy-Jill Levine Download E-book
    • 12. The Manipulation of History for Ideology: Pro-Palestinian and Pro-Zionist Examples - Lester L. Grabbe Download E-book
    • 13. On the Manipulation of History for Ideology: A Response to Lester Grabbe - Keith W. Whitelam Download E-book
    • 14. Christian Claims on the Inheritance of Israel: Justin Martyr's Dialogue with Trypho the Jew - Michael J. Kok Download E-book
    • 15. Banning the Nations: An Old Testament Approach to the Rights and Wrongs of Boycotts - Alastair G. Hunter Download E-book
    • Bibliography Download E-book
    • Indices Download E-book  

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    If you followed my link to the Change.org petition to remove the current permit system for metal detecting in Sweden, you might (unless of course you read the blurb, considered the matter carefully and added your signature to it) be getting reminders every two days or so from the organizers: 'Paul, we’re missing your name Finish signing “Bring fair metal detecting laws to Sweden”...'.

    What does that mean "finish signing"? How many internauts would type "Pau...", and then go away to make a coffee and not come back to add the rest of their name and close the window in the intervening week? The organizers do not seem to get the idea. They make a proposal and set out the case for it, we read it, think about it and then if we agree add our name to their petition. We sign or do not sign because of what we think about the proposition and the way they have presented their arguments, and putting that in context of what we already know and think. In this case, the proposers have not persuaded me and I am not putting my name under it.

    I am, therefore, puzzled by their insistence that I should 'finish signing'. But I think the reason they give is characteristic:  Since you visited, this petition now has 1,756 supporters. Every signature helps — add your name today. So, go with the flow, be part of a group. This is a bit like the pathetically superficial people (particularly the neck-tattoo guy, number two) represented in this Sept 2016 video about Brexit voting:


    This is what democracy has come to, people take 'decisions' on behalf of everybody else not because they have any opinion based on reflection on the facts, but because 'everybody else is doing it'.

    Note also what has happened here, the petition organizers are addressing me by name, they have tracked that I visited their site, and (though I did not enter my email there) they now have access to my email address and presumably will continue pestering me to 'finish signing', until I give in and do it to stop them harassing me or until the petition closes. Well, that certainly is not going to make me a friend of the Sveriges Metallsökarförening (SMF), the largest Metal Detecting Organisation in Sweden. I invite them to read what I wrote about their ideas, and attempt to persuade me that I am wrong by showing where my reasons for not supporting their proposals are false, rather than simply pestering me:





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    Archaeology supports MD? Really?
    The "Change.org" webpage gives you the opportunity to see the names of some of those who have signed the petition 'Bring fair metal detecting laws to Sweden' that now has more than 1K supporters and an interesting free comment box where signatories can give their 'Reasons for signing'. It's an eyeopener.

    The first thing that one notes is the small numbers of people with Scandinavian-sounding names and writing in Swedish. Let's note the odd fact that the petition itself is written in English - so obviously they are counting on brotherly help from foreigners. Note also the verb of the title of the petition, 'bring'. Bring from outside, and bring from you-know-where. As Britain slinks off from having any meaningful position in Europe in March next year, perhaps this will - to its shame - be the only place where Britain has any influence at all in the world, poisoning the heritage debate with the unreflexive narrow object centric view of many of its archaeologists.

    So there's a Russian, at least two Danes, a Pole (Igor Murawski, settled in Britain), Mr Nolan from Ireland and lots of Brits. The latter dominate the comments. This means that rather than getting an insight into what Swedish tekkies think, we see rather the standards of adult literacy that the British education system is turning out which manifests itself in the number of people commenting who cannot manage much more than an "OK", one gives his email address as a comment. One thing is clear, very few of the people signing have actually read much of the explanatory text accompanying the petition, a number of people are writing as though they think (despite what they've just been told) that 'metal detecting' is forbidden in Sweden.

    Others stress how 'healthy' the hobby is (a mental throwback to DIG and NCMD propaganda from the 1980s and early 90s). Many of them stress how they are 'rescuing artefacts' from: the weather, fertilisers, bulldozers and building, the plough, and other artefact hunters. None of them mention documenting the context, the loss of which turns archaeological evidence into a loose decontextualised collectable. And that is interesting that the two archaeologists I spotted commenting (no PAS FLOs among them, yet) do not mention it either. They come from the 'other' archaeology. The first to comment was Martin Rundkvist of Umeå university in Sweden.
    Martin Rundkvist 7 days ago
    The current rules are dysfunctional and based on faulty assumptions. As an archaeological research scholar, I want rules that allow Sweden's law-abiding hobbyists to contribute freely to the knowledge of our country's past, while on the other hand keeping our heritage safe from agricultural erosion and nighthawk crooks.
    He sees a permit system as based on 'faulty assumptions', the same ones that underlie the 1992  European Convention on the Protection of the Archaeological Heritage and sees blind artefact hoiking as a way of 'keeping [objects] safe from agricultural erosion and nighthawk crooks'. He represents 'our heritage' however as the objects that artefact hunters hoik out, because context is destroyed by ploughing and nocturnal diggings by looters whether or not they come home with something in their pocket or not. Simply illogical and failing to address the main issue with Collection-Driven Exploitation of the Archaeological Record.  This was followed a day later by remarks by one of the Ixelles Six/Helsinki Gang, Andres Dobat of Aarhus University:
    Andres Dobat 6 days ago
    Responsible metal detectecting is just another way of entering into a dialogue with the past. @Riksantikvarie: Don't build fences. Educate and facilitate instead.
    Relativising Collection-Driven Exploitation of the Archaeological Record as 'just (sic) another way of entering into a dialogue with the past' is not terribly helpful. The two people that scaled the pyramids the other day to pose naked and engage in simulated sex acts there (also Danes) seem to me could also be argued as as 'just another way of entering into a dialogue with the past' and no doubt the symmetrists would say 'why not' allow anyone else just to climb the pyramid to do what they want there? Facilitate, Dr Dobat? Likewise people that find images left by previous inhabitants of the territory they now occupy offensive should surely, Mr Dobat, not be castigated for 'entering into a dialogue with the past' with a sledgehammer and explosives. But then Dr Dobat brazenly recently added his name and reputation to the object-centred assertion that pilfering archaeological evidence from sites with metal detectors and spades is not a form of damage ("In order to be considered 'cultural damage', a find and/or its associated information would have to be irretrievably lost."). I think he is totally wrong on that when we are talking about any form of  Collection-Driven Exploitation of the Archaeological Record.

    Yes, we need to educate and facilitate, but instead of going along with the easiest option (shoulder shrugging about knowledge theft due to Collection-Driven Exploitation of the Archaeological Record  as most supporters of relic collecting are doing) we need to facilitate other, more helpful, ways by which the public can start entering into a dialogue with the past.

    In Britain there used to be an amateur archaeology that was based on amateur landscape survey, earthwork surveys, hedgerow species counting, mapping, recording standing buildings, collecting oral history in their neighbourhood. Totally benign, useful, non-intrusive and non-destructive. The PAS has in effect basically destroyed that in the UK and now the English disease is spreading.



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    Franca Ela Consolino (éd.), Ovid in Late Antiquity, Turnhout, 2018.

    Éditeur : Brepols
    Collection : Studi e testi tardoantichi 16
    506 p. pages
    ISBN : 978-2-503-57808-8
    € 115 (excl. TVA + shipping)

    2017 is the 2000th anniversary of Ovid's death, and Ovid in Late Antiquity aims to mark the occasion. This book embodies a specific approach to Ovid's oeuvre, which is not analysed in and of itself, but rather in its role as a wellspring of inspiration to which later authors would return time and again. Covering the work of a number of authors, who found their way back to Ovid via different methodological pathways, the research distilled in this book is geared towards exploring the ways in which the authors of late antiquity interacted with the poet of the Metamorphoses and with his immense, multifaceted output. The choice of this approach arose out of an awareness that the presence and influence of Ovid in late antiquity constitute aspects of the Ovidian legacy that would benefit from more in-depth exploration. The essays in this collection are intended to help bridge this gap.

    Lire la suite...


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    As promised, here is my blog post about Michel Faber’s novel, The Book of Strange New Things. I listened to it as an audiobook, allowing me to finally get to it after having had it recommended to me by several people. For anyone who enjoyed Mary Doria Russell’s The Sparrow, this is similar inasmuch as it focuses […]

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