Reblogged: The Partial Historians

The Partial Historians podcast uses Roman historical sources to discuss the founding of Rome and the city's early history. This week, they use accounts by Dionysius of Halicarnassus and Livy to talk about the Roman relationship with their Oscan-speaking neighbours in the fifth century BC. I love the style of this podcast - their close... Continue Reading →

Reblogged: Learning the alphabet

This morning the blogosphere has obligingly brought me the answer to a question I couldn't answer yesterday. Natalia Elvira Astoreca, of the CREWS project in Cambridge, has written a blog post on the different ways that people learn the alphabet in modern Europe. A colleague asked me a question about this at my talk yesterday, which I... Continue Reading →

It’s all Greek to Anna

It's All Greek to Me is a brand new blog by my colleague Anna Judson. Anna is an expert on Linear B, linguistics and Greek in general, so I know that lots of readers will be interested in her site. Anna has long been a major contributor to the Res Gerendae graduate student Classics blog, but... Continue Reading →

Plautus and plavtad

Here's a nice post by Matteo Calabrese on the meaning behind the name of the Roman dramatist Plautus, with a reference back to the post I wrote on the Pietrabbondante tile in January. If you were wondering, his name is derived from a nickname meaning "flat-footed" - but as far as I know, we can... Continue Reading →

Reblogged: Samnites in Pompeii

A great post here on the new Samnite grave in Pompeii by Virginia L. Campbell. She’s also posted about the Oscan epigraphy of Pompeii here. A new discovery at Pompeii is always an exciting event, and even more so when it’s from the ‘Samnite’ period of the town rather than its final destruction. I’m looking forward to hearing lots more about this new find.

Pompeian Connections

155837163-9171ee50-2b8f-422d-b732-d49f1073699dYesterday came a rather exciting announcement that a Samnite grave has been discovered in Pompeii. The details revealed thus far include that a skeleton, belonging to a woman approximately forty to fifty years old, complete with grave goods including numerous jars still containing traces of their original contents, has been excavated in an area beyond the Porta di Ercolano.

The Samnites were a native Italic people (much like the Latins who founded Rome), whose culture was similarly tribal, consisting of a loose federation of a number of groups who inhabited parts of central and southern Italy. They tended to live in some of the more mountainous regions of Italy, were sheep herders, and famed wool workers. They leave no written record of their own, but survive in the history of Rome written by Livy. His material, however, is heavily biased, as he was largely writing about the Samnites and…

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