Review: Communication and Materiality

Here’s my “Classics for All” review of Communitcation and Materiality: Written and Unwritten Communication in pre-Modern Societies. If you’d like to read the book, or selected chapters from it, you can currently download it for free from the De Gruyter website. Mostly a very good read, which introduced me to a lot of sources I wasn’t familiar with…

The problem with long alpha

This week, a lot of us who teach Classical Philology and Linguistics at Cambridge have been teaching our first essay of the first year course on the sounds of Greek and Latin. I had a request from a student for a good example of the difference between long and short alpha, which really stumped me for a…

Linguistics Cartoons to Bring You Luck on Friday 13th

My very clever colleague Matt is having his viva today (good luck Matt!), and he posted this Indo-European cartoon to illustrate the occasion. (Killing a dragon is of course the linguists’ version of the famous viva “snake fight”, just FYI.) You can see more of Christina Skelton’s great cartoons on Linear B and Indo-European over…

Was there non-Roman literature in Ancient Italy?

Fairly regularly, someone will ask me: was there Oscan (or Venetic or Etruscan or South Picene) literature? Or, sometimes a bit more aggressively, someone asserts that there definitely wasn’t an Oscan literary culture and therefore that Oscan-speakers and their societies were just less advanced than the Greeks and/or Romans. It’s not that I think this…

My New Job at the University of Exeter

I am very pleased to announce officially that I will be joining the University of Exeter from September 2016 as a Lecturer in Classics. I’m thrilled to be joining such a great department, where I’ll be working with scholars whose work I admire very much. Already everyone has been incredibly friendly and welcoming, and we already…