Ancient History Blog

  • Heroes 5: Erasmus

    Yesterday, I discussed how Poliziano discovered the principles of textual criticism . In other words, he found out how scholars might reconstruct texts of ancient... Read more
  • Heroes 4: from Poliziano to Lachmann

    Yesterday, I wrote about Angelo Poliziano, the man who realized that ancient sources are sometimes dependent on each other and should be dealt with accordingly... Read more
  • Heroes 3: Angelo Poliziano

    There’s a lot to say about Angelo Ambrogini. Some biographical details first. Born in 1454 in the wine city of Montepulciano, and therefore nicknamed “Poliziano”... Read more
  • Heroes 2: back to the beginning

    The day before yesterday I announced a series of articles on the great scholars who contributed to our ever-changing image of Antiquity. The philologists, the archaeologists... Read more
  • Melqart in Leiden

    Right now, the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden (which is, to my good fortune, located just a stone’s throw from where I live!) is hosting... Read more
  • Heroes 1: ancient histories, plural

    If you would have asked a Medieval scholar where history had begun, he would have said something like “Why? In the Garden of Eden of... Read more
  • The Egyptian sphinx

    In ancient Egypt, the sphinx was a mythical creature associated with kings, as well as divinities (in particular the sun god). They often served as... Read more
  • Greek mythology on screen

    I’ve just returned fresh from lecturing on Greek mythology again and so, once more, I find myself inspired to write about something myth-related. (Don’t worry... Read more
  • A portrait of Socrates?

    Socrates was a Greek philosopher whose work is considered so important that all philosophers who lived before he did are now lumped together as one... Read more
  • Ancient Greek faith in myths

    When you teach a particular course long enough, there are some questions that pop up time and again. As I’ve noted earlier, I’m currently in... Read more

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