Tag Archives: Latin Inscriptions

All Work and No Play…?

This year’s August is a strange month for me. On the one hand, this August is the final month of my British Academy Fellowship, which has allowed me to work on my project ‘Poetry of the People’, focusing on the … Continue reading

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Undying Voices: The Poetry of Roman Britain

Britain has produced some of the world’s most highly renowned, influential, and beautiful poetry – Geoffrey Chaucer, Sir Walter Raleigh, William Shakespeare,  John Milton, Robert Burns, the Brontë sisters, Lewis Carroll, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, to name but a select few! … Continue reading

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Sousse: Whence the Offence, Whence the Hurt…?

Sousse, ancient Hadrumetum, gave light to a famous mosaic, now kept in the Musée national du Bardo, Tunis: The mosaic displays Rome’s most famous poet Vergil (centre), surrounded by two Muses, Clio (left) and Melpomene (right). In his lap, held … Continue reading

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More Than Meets the Eye: Fragrance, Sensuousness, and Inscribed Latin Poetry

When we talk about ‘reading’ and ‘Latin poetry’ in academic contexts, we often tend to reduce complex intellectual and sensuous processes to a fairly linear model by which a text, either by acoustic or by optic means, somehow enters the … Continue reading

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Every Dog Has His Day

I am a hypocrite. I enjoy eating meat, even though I know about the way it is ‘produced’ (a sterile, technical term, to disguise the suffering and killing of animals, which have been bred under horrendous conditions, drugged, and tortured … Continue reading

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Poverty and the Poetics of Underclass Morality

Is there a direct (inversely proportional) relation between (desired) material wealth and morality? The author of the first pseudo-Sallustian letter to Caesar appears to think so ([Sall.] epist. 1.7.3-9; transl. J. C. Rolfe): But by far the greatest blessing which … Continue reading

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Latin Poetry and the Limits of Roman Medicine

There is a notorious passage in Plutarch‘s Life of Cato the Elder (23.3-4), in which the Greek philosopher denounces the infamous censor‘s view on Greek medicine: It was not only Greek philosophers that he hated, but he was also suspicious … Continue reading

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Oh the Humanity!

Several months ago, I received a letter from the Vatican which had been sent by His Eminence Pietro Parolin, Cardinal Secretary of State. The letter included my appointment to the position of Academicus Ordinarius of the Pontifical Academy for Latin … Continue reading

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The Riddle of a Poor Man’s Epitaph

As I write these lines, I am in Tarragona, about one hour south of Barcelona by train, on Catalonia’s Costa Daurada (‘Golden Coast’). Tarragona, Roman Tarraco, now a UNESCO world heritage site, is home to some of the most impressive … Continue reading

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Sadness, Weariness, and Laughter: An Ancient Latin Poem on Occasion of Mental Health Awareness Week 2015

Between 11-17 May 2015 it is Mental Health Awareness Week, when the Mental Health Foundation, like every year, helps to raise awareness of mental health and wellbeing issues. Mental health is hard to define. On their webpages, the Mental Health … Continue reading

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