Oscan in Early Modern Italy

One of my favourite things about studying an unusual language is that your research is very memorable. Once people associate you with a particular obscure language, they will immediately think of you whenever they hear about it elsewhere. And - even better - they will send you sources that you never could have found otherwise.... Continue Reading →

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... Continue Reading →

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... Continue Reading →

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