Maia Atlantis: Ancient World Blogs

3 hours 40 min ago archatlas: Necropolis of Cerveteri A major centre of... << He has a wife you know


Necropolis of Cerveteri

A major centre of Etruscan civilisation that was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004, the Necropolis stretches for more than two kilometres. This certainly makes it the most imposing in all Etruria and one of the most magnificent monuments of its kind anywhere in the Mediterranean basin. These monumental tombs are located inside tumuli, partly cut into the tufa rock and partly built over it. The purpose of these edifices was to illustrate the desire of a handful of aristocratic families to make a statement about their wealth and to perpetuate a lifestyle of the highest quality also after death. 

Images and text via, additional images via + via

4 hours 16 min ago "Sussex Detectorist" Hides << Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Alex G. Bliss a PAS partner from Sussex boasts about his self-recording on Twitter. I guess he's looking for a pat on the head. I expect he gets loads from FLOs and archaeologists who don't give a tinkers about or a moment's thought to artefact hunting.

This morning I made a comment on one of his latest tweets, taking a different approach to what he wrote. I stand on my conviction that there is something here about private collecting of archaeological artefacts that needs open public discussion, and I see no reason why somebody genuinely "interested in the past" and collaborating with archaeologists in the preservation and sustainable use of the archaeological record should not share those concerns and should be in any way opposed to such a discussion.

Mr Bliss however seems not to be of such a persuasion, he has blocked my access to his twitter account apparently to prevent me from seeing what he writes,.

That is the tekkie devotion to transparency and openness. Mr Bliss is perfectly willing to show us (the stakeholders) some of the bits of his collection when he feels that doing so makes (with the help of the PAS) artefact hunting look like "a good thing". THis is simply exploiting the PAS to legitimate the hobby. In other words this is the facadism I spoke of earlier. The moment however it is pointed out that beneath the facade is another series of issues which need to be addressed and which the declarative presentation is supposed to hide, he clams up.

Metal detectorists (and Mr Bliss), if an edifice is crumbling because the foundations are faulty, those foundations need to be examined and rebuilt. Papering over the cracks in the walls as they appear is no solution, and catastrophic collapse is inevitable.

TAKE A GOOD LOOK at this behaviour, for these are precisely the sort of people the PAS wants to grab more and more millions of public quid to make into the "partners" of the British Museum, archaeological heritage professionals and to whom they want us all to entrust the exploitation of the archaeological record. Take a good look and decide what you think about that as a "policy".  
4 hours 52 min ago "once again the hobbyist bails out the government" << Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

Generous to a fault, those heritage-takers, on a British metal detecting forum near you:
"once again the hobbyist bails out the government"
Everybody should be registering with these forums to see what artefact hunters themselves say about their activities. It is quite an eye-opener, and very revealing of their utterly facadist attitudes. In fact, how can one be a supporter of artefact collectors without doing this? I suspect that many jobsworth UK archaeologists do precisely that, which is simply superficial and negligent. Don't be like them, take a look at what artefact hunters are actually saying as they dismember the archaeological record and pocket archaeological evidence. 

5 hours 49 min ago Tautology and Missing the Point << Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

The Sussex Detectorist Twitter feed redundantly announces "The ordinary artefacts I record are just as important as the special ones. Here's a sword-belt mount from E Sussex". A sword belt mount is hardly an ordinary artefact like a roof-tile nail or piece of cooking pot - but the latter are not regarded as collectables, and it is by that category which the item is being assessed.

The tautology of that short message obscures the main issue. Britain is one of the few countries in the world which treats the management of the archaeological resource in this way. Here an archaeological assemblage is being used merely as a quarry for collectables to feed any number of scattered, ephemeral and undocumented private collections. The "recording" is only half the story, the other is selective hoiking and taking. From what sort of site was this sword-belt mount pocketed? What does it mean? What else was there? Were the nails not found and recorded from roofing tiles or coffins?

All this warbling and bragging about what artefact hunters voluntarily record obscures the issue of the nature of the activity from which the recording is just a side issue. It is private collecting of archaeological artefacts in general we should be discussing. Just what artefacts does "Sussex Detectorist" collect, how many and from where, and what has happened to the information connected with the sites and rejected artefacts which were not added to this individual's personal accumulation?  To what extent is what this one does typical of what the other 15000 do, week after week?

7 hours 24 min ago Reserve Collections to Go? << Paul Barford (Portable Antiquity Collecting and Heritage Issues)

US dealers, their lobbyists and collectors insist that before asking for restrictions aiming to curb the sales of smuggled portable antiquities ("retentionists") source countries like Italy and Greece should sell the "duplicate" items in storage to collectors. The latter, as is their wont, will immediately lose all and any documentation pertaining to their origins. Here is one of those accumulations of duplicates (from the Museums Week twitter feed)

These items are in the basement and other stores of the British Museum. They are there as research and study material, for display in temporary exhibitions, for loans to other museums and other purposes. Selling them off would weaken the ability of the Museum to fulfil its functions. Why idiot collectors persist in repeating this mantra without thinking about it is anybodys guess.

7 hours 29 min ago Monuments of Mosul in Danger << Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online) Monuments of Mosul in Danger
The project Monuments of Mosul in Danger (Ohrožená architektura města Mosulu) aims to document and research Mosul monuments that have been destroyed by ISIS since June 2014 (see About the Project). As the first output of the project, we are releasing a list and interactive map of destroyed monuments created through analysis of satellite imagery. The list and map are interconnected with profile lists of individual monuments showing satellite images documenting the scope of the destruction. The map documents the situation as of the end of August 2015. We have failed to identify six of 38 destroyed structures (labeled as unknown structure). We would be grateful for any additional information that would help us to identify them. 

Do not hesitate to contact us should we have made any mistakes in our identifications. Also, any supportive documentation related to the endangered Mosul architecture would be appreciated.
10 hours 47 min ago High resolution plates fron "La Porte d’Horemheb au Xe pylône de Karnak" << Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online) High resolution plates fron "La Porte d’Horemheb au Xe pylône de Karnak"

Michel JORDAN (dessins), Susanne BICKEL & Jean-Luc CHAPPAZ, avec des contributions de Faried ADROM et Éric RICHARD, La Porte d’Horemheb au Xe pylône de Karnak (CSÉG 13), Genève 2015.
Entrepris sous le règne d’Amenhotep III et entièrement décoré sous celui d’Horemheb, le Xepylône de Karnak signalait l’entrée méridionale du grand temple d’Amon, tout en magnifiant l’accès au dromos conduisant vers les sanctuaires de Mout, Khonsou ou Kamoutef. La qualité et la finesse d’exécution des décors – non exempts d’irrégularités graphiques – en rehaussent la majesté et rendent toujours actuel le jugement de Champollion.
Cet ouvrage, fruit de plusieurs missions des équipes du Fonds pour l’Égyptologie de Genève, situe le monument, resté inédit à ce jour, dans son contexte historique et topographique, puis analyse les principes architecturaux de son élévation. L’attention est ensuite portée sur la porte de granite, dont les scènes sont reproduites, reconstituées et commentées de différents points de vue (notamment religion ou histoire de l’art). L’avant-porte en grès et le socle du colosse sud-ouest, également restés inédits, constituent les deux derniers chapitres de l’étude.

Planches épigraphiques:
56 a
56 b
112 a
112 b

11 hours 46 min ago Volg vandaag de lichting van de middeleeuwse IJsselkogge op de voet! << ArcheoNet BE

Woensdag 10 februari wordt een hoogdag voor de Nederlandse archeologie. Om 10u gaan onderwatercheologen in Kampen (prov. Overijssel) van start met de lichting van de ‘IJsselkogge’. Het gaat om een omvangrijk en goed bewaard gebleven koggeschip uit de 15de eeuw. Liefhebbers kunnen het gebeuren op de voet volgen via de livestream die wordt aangeboden op en

12 hours 30 min ago Online Guide to Evagrius Ponticus << Charles Ellwood Jones (AWOL: The Ancient World Online) [First posted in AWOL 17 January 2012, updated 9 February 2016]

Guide to Evagrius Ponticus
edited by Joel Kalvesmaki

Evagrius Ponticus (b. 345 in Ibora; d. 399 in Egypt), a monastic theologian, was one of the most talented intellects of the fourth century. Circulating in elite ecclesiastical circles of Cappadocia and Asia Minor, he began his career under Basil of Caesarea and Gregory of Nazianzus, serving with the latter in Constantinople through a stormy tenure that culminated in the Second Ecumenical Council (381). Known then as a brilliant heresiologist, Evagrius seemed destined for a successful ecclesiastical career. He chose a different course, and fled to Jerusalem, where he took vows in the monastic communities of Rufinus and Melania. From there he traveled to Egypt and lived in monasteries in Nitria and Kellia. In Egypt he wrote extensively in a variety of genres—letters, proverbs, brief sayings (chapters), and treatises—nearly all geared toward explaining and analyzing vice and virtue, demons and angels, psychological and psychosomatic phenomena—in sum, the life of the ascetic. His accounts are set, sometimes explicitly, oftentimes pensively, within a well-developed metaphysical system that responded to both classical philosophy (Plato, Aristotle, Stoicism) and the theology of some of the most accomplished Christian intellectuals (Clement of Alexandria, Origen, Gregory of Nazianzus).
Although well connected in his own time, Evagrius fell into disrepute in the sixth century, when his writings, along with those of Origen and Didymus the Blind, were associated with a theological strain of Origenism condemned at the Fifth Ecumenical Council (553). The more speculative of Evagrius's writings fell out of circulation in the Byzantine Greek manuscript tradition. Those works survive in a number of other languages, principally Syriac, Armenian, Georgian, and Arabic—linguistic traditions whose reception of Origen and Evagrius were not as controversial. His writings deeply influenced many theologians and monastic writers, including Sts. John Cassian, "Dionysius the Areopagite," Maximus Confessor, John Climacus, Isaac of Nineveh, and Simeon the New Theologian. The Armenian Orthodox Church commemorates him, as did some Syriac-speaking Orthodox churches, but his condemnation is maintained by the Eastern Orthodox Church and, with important caveats (e.g., his recent inclusion in Butler's Lives of the Saints), the Roman Catholic Church.
This Guide provides definitive lists of Evagrius's works, of editions and translations of those works, and of studies related to his life and thought. It includes an inventory of key ancient sources that refer to Evagrius and a display of imagery from the ancient world. Updated quarterly, the Guide will gradually introduce a manuscript checklist, images of manuscripts, transcriptions of those manuscripts, and open source critical editions of Evagrius's writings.

13 hours 38 min ago P. Sicard, Iter victorinum << Compitum - publications


Patrice Sicard, Iter victorinum. La tradition manuscrite des œuvres de Hugues et de Richard de Saint-Victor. Répertoire complémentaire et études, Turnhout, 2015.

Éditeur : Brepols
Collection : Bibliotheca Victorina, 24
904 pages
ISBN : 978-2-503-55492-1
150 €


En 1976, Rudolf Goy recensait quelque 1350 manuscrits comportant une ou plusieurs œuvres de Hugues de Saint-Victor; en 2005 son répertoire des manuscrits de Richard de Saint-Victor (Bibliotheca Victorina, 18) repérait 900 témoins. Depuis 1975 ont vu le jour quelque 250 catalogues de manuscrits et des descriptions de fonds de bibliothèques sont désormais « en ligne »: un travail de « filtrage » s'imposait. Des catalogues, restés inaccessibles, ont pu être atteints. L'examen direct de très nombreux témoins pour l'édition en cours de Hugues au Corpus christianorum a repéré maints textes victorins encore passés inaperçus. Enfin, d'autres sources de renseignements devaient être interrogées : descriptions de manuscrits accompagnant des entreprises d'édition de corpus entiers, répertoires thématiques, introductions des grandes collections.
Un dépouillement systématique de cet ensemble a permis d'élargir considérablement le nombre des mss recensés des deux grands Victorins. En bien des cas, on a pu apporter des précisions ou rectificatifs (datations, origine, foliotations) aux données premières. Sont signalés en leur lieu les apports des dernières années touchant l'histoire littéraire ou la critique d'authenticité.
Ce répertoire s'est également proposé un relevé méthodique des manuscrits des « Miscellanées » hugoniennes, jusque-là sommairement signalés. On a localisé les pieces de ce corpus spécifique et évolutif, réunies par Hugues ou le premier éditeur médiéval de ses œuvres, et indiqué celles auxquelles fut parfois conférée une autonomie, celles auxquelles devra s'intéresser la critique d'authenticité, celles enfin qui, encore inédites, sont à considérer comme authentiques.
Pseudépigraphes et œuvres inauthentiques ont été répertoriés avec, quand on l'a pu, l'attribution portée par les manuscrits, qui peut aider à discerner les points d'émergence de ces attributions fautives.
Sont relevés épitaphes, notes biographiques,miniatures et enluminures, mentions et éléments relatifs à des œuvres hugoniennes ou ricardiennes. Un index cumulatif des deux répertoires antérieurs et du présent Iter est joint.

Lire la suite...

14 hours 49 min ago << Archaeology Magazine

SOFIA, BULGARIA—Pieces of a bronze statue of Emperor Trajan, discovered in the 1980s, could be restored by conservators at Bulgaria’s National Museum of History. Archaeology in Bulgaria reports that the second-century statue, decorated with images of gods and heroes from ancient mythology, has been stored in the conservation laboratory at the museum, but has never been shown to the public. It was unearthed at the site of Candidiana, a Roman road station and fortress located on the Danube River. The fort was eventually destroyed during the invasions of the Byzantine period. The museum’s conservators just need funding to restore the statue and space to display it when they are finished. For more on Emperor Trajan, go to "Rome's Lost Aqueduct."

14 hours 49 min ago << Archaeology Magazine

badger archery burialWILTSHIRE, ENGLAND—A Bronze Age burial was discovered near Stonehenge after a badger dug up a cremation urn and other pieces of pottery and left them on the surface of the ground. Senior archaeologist Richard Osgood of the Ministry of Defense told BBC News that the burial, which included a bronze saw, an archer’s wrist guard, a copper chisel, shaft straighteners, and cremated human remains, may have belonged to an archer or a person who made archery equipment. The badger’s claw marks can be seen on some of the pottery fragments. “There are badger setts in quite a few scheduled monuments—the actions of burrowing animals is one of the biggest risks to archaeology in Britain—but to bring out items of this quality from one hole is unusual,” he said. For more on animals as excavators, go to "Critter Diggers."

14 hours 50 min ago The Art of Replication: Fighting to Save Syria’s Heritage << From Stone to Screen

The Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan currently houses over seventy-nine thousand Syrian refugees who have fled their homeland. Over the past year, it has also become home to a few small-scale models of Syrian heritage sites and monuments that have been demolished by ISIS. Community leader Ahmad Hariri, from the…

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The post The Art of Replication: Fighting to Save Syria’s Heritage appeared first on From Stone to Screen.

15 hours 5 min ago 1000 jaar Graafschap Loon << ArcheoNet BE

graafschaploonOp zaterdag 5 maart vindt op de Landcommanderij Alden Biesen in Bilzen een colloquium plaats over ‘1000 jaar Graafschap Loon’. Het colloquium wil het oude graafschap Loon in al zijn aspecten weer leesbaar maken voor een breed publiek. Een nieuwe en frisse aanpak moet heemkundige kringen en geschiedkundigen enthousiast op het pad zetten van verder lokaal historisch onderzoek.

Meer info op

15 hours 32 min ago Stucco relief of a nude youthRoman, 2nd half of 1st century A.D.... << Ancient Peoples

Stucco relief of a nude youth

Roman, 2nd half of 1st century A.D. (Early Imperial period)

The powerfully-built nude youth stepping to the right may be a follower of Dionysos, for he wears an animal skin over his left shoulder. He carries a pedum (shepherd’s crook) in his right hand and a hare is suspended from his left.

Source: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

15 hours 48 min ago << Archaeology Magazine

Eurasia summer temperaturesBIRMENSDORF, SWITZERLAND—Tree-ring data collected in the Altai Mountains of Russia have helped scientists reconstruct summer temperatures in central Asia for the past 2,000 years. “The course temperatures we took in the Altai Mountains correspond remarkably well to what we found in the Alps,” Ulf Büntgen of the Swiss Federal Research Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape WSL said in a press release. His multidisciplinary research team detected a period of low temperatures in the sixth century A.D. that they call the “Late Antique Little Ice Age,” or LALIA. The low temperatures were likely the result of three volcanic eruptions in the mid-sixth century that ejected particles into the atmosphere and blocked sunlight. The resulting famine was followed by the pandemic of the Justinian plague and political turmoil that may have led to the decline of the Eastern Roman Empire. To the south, the Arabian Peninsula received more rain than usual and grew more vegetation that may have sustained larger herds of camels used by Arab armies. “The LALIA fits in well with the main transformative events that occurred in Eurasia during that time,” Büntgen explained. For more, go to "Letter from Iceland: Surviving the Little Ice Age." 

16 hours 8 min ago << The Heroic Age
SELIM 28 – University of Vigo, 15-17 September 2016


The Spanish Society for Mediaeval English Language and Literature and
the local organising committee invite members of the Society and all
other scholars interested in the field to participate in the 28th
International SELIM Conference, which will be hosted by the Department
of English, French and German of the University of Vigo from September
15th to 17th 2016.

The organisers welcome papers dealing with any aspect of mediaeval
English language and literature and particularly encourage the
submission of papers that offer new readings or perspectives on
mediaeval English texts, as well as new approaches and analytical

The following keynote speakers have already confirmed their
participation in the conference:

Richard North (University College London)
Stuart D. Lee (University of Oxford)
Ans Van Kemenade (Radboud Universiteit, Nijmegen)
Belén Méndez Naya (University of Santiago de Compostela)

Scholars interested in offering 20-minute papers (followed by a
10-minute discussion) must send a 250 word abstract in electronic
format (please use the MSWord template found at via e-mail to before
May 15th 2016. Abstracts should include name(s), institutional
affiliation(s) of the author(s), as well as e-mail address and the
technical support required for the presentation. Acceptance of
proposals will be confirmed as soon as the proposal has been

A selection of contributions will be edited by the organisers and
submitted to a major international press.

For further information please visit the conference webpage,, or contact the organising committee at

We are looking forward to seeing you in Vigo next September.
Dr. Jorge Luis Bueno Alonso
Senior Lecturer
Department of English, French and German
University of Vigo
Lagoas-Marcosende Campus
Praza das Cantigas, s/n
E36310 VIGO (Spain)
Phone: +34986813958
Fax: +34986812380
16 hours 12 min ago << The Heroic Age

Embodying life and death: The body in Anglo-Saxon England

Saturday 22nd October 2016, Durham University

Keynote speaker: Prof Catherine Karkov (University of Leeds)

The Anglo-Saxon period is characterised by significant cultural shifts and transformations. Emerging kingdoms, religious conversion, economic intensification, growing cultural contact and mobility result in increasing social complexity. Situated directly at the centre of these multiple transformations are the understudied Anglo-Saxon bodies, enacting, resisting and adapting to the ever changing world around them. The Anglo-Saxons employed the human form on elite gear and paraphernalia, found humour in the human anatomy as evidenced in their riddles and, in death, left behind their bodies often disposing of them with elaborate treatments, rich goods, and theatrical staging. From the Germanic 'pagan' to the Christian periods, the Anglo-Saxons considered and debated the power of the human body in real and metaphysical terms. Despite immensely varied treatment, representation and conceptualisation of the body, a lacunae remains in scholarship on the Anglo-Saxon body. This represents a challenging field of discourse that can facilitate cross-period and cross-disciplinary study on the changing nature of body portrayal and perception across c. AD 400-1100.

This interdisciplinary conference will examine and unfold the multiplicity and vibrancy of the body in the Anglo-Saxon world. Paper proposals are invited on any aspect of embodied living and dying in early medieval England and continental parallels, and from researchers in any discipline. Possible topics include but are not limited to:

Gender, sex, and sexuality
Nakedness, clothing, and the flesh
Physical appearance, hygiene, and bodily aesthetics Sensory perception and experience Religious conversion: the pagan body and the Christian body Dying, death, and the corpse The abnormal, the monstrous, and the Other Health, disease, and medicine Bodily governance and corporal punishment Bodies whole and body parts Envisioning the Anglo-Saxon body in the contemporary world

Please send abstracts of no more than 250 words to Sian Mui ( by 31 March 2016.

For more information:
Sian Mui,
Tristan Lake, Department of Archaeology, Durham University, South Road, Durham, DH1 3LE.

This conference is kindly funded by the Department of Archaeology and the Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, Durham University.
17 hours 17 min ago Messages and Media (Postgraduates in Ancient History, March 19, Newcastle) << The Stoa Consortium

Annual Meeting of Postgraduates in Ancient History
‘Messages and Media’
19th March 2016.
Armstrong Building, Newcastle University.

We are very pleased to announce that Professor Richard Clay, newly appointed Professor of Digital Humanities at Newcastle University, has agreed to present our keynote. As an art historian, Richard has a wealth of experience in digital humanities and research on the history of various media. He has made documentaries for the BBC, including ‘The French Revolution: Tearing up History’ and ‘The Brief History of Graffiti’. We thought his expertise would bring our discussion of ‘Messages and Media’ to full fruition.

Further, registration for delegates is now open. Attendance is free, but we ask that you register your intent to attend so that we can gauge numbers for catering and conference materials. Tea/coffee and lunch will be provided for all delegates.

In order to register, please fill out this form: If you experience any difficulties or problems with the form, or cannot access or use it for whatever reason, simply e-mail us at Thank you.

A programme will be circulated in due course.

We look forward to welcoming you in Newcastle.

Kind regards,

Lauren Emslie and Christopher Mowat

18 hours 18 sec ago I write a blog post. Students reply with a Facebook post. What is going on? << Michael E. Smith (Publishing Archaeology) I guess I just don't understand the new world of social media. My previous blog post was a critique of Rosemary Joyce's lecture at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Then I see on Twitter that some anthropology graduate students have responded to my post, not by commenting directly on this blog, but in a Facebook post from the CUB Anthropology Department's Facebook page. Their post is mildly critical. I posted a brief comment on Facebook inviting them to reply directly on the blog (as a comment) to continue discussion. I say that I try to avoid using Facebook for professional purposes, and I am not anxious to start posting there about abstruse issues of social theory. But I haven't heard any more from the group of students.

(( SLIGHT UPDATE, same day, 9:30 am: Here is a link to the facebook post:  And the likes are up to 34! ))

Perhaps in the world of social media and academia, all venues are equivalent. A response on Facebook might be no different than a reply to a blog, or some other kind of internet posting. So maybe I should just go ahead and reply to their comments here in my blog. Maybe I should switch to my other blog, Wide Urban World, to spread things around even further.

Or maybe I should just shut up. As a long-time blogger and senior scholar, I have a number of advantages over graduate students in terms of experience, power, and access. I am not anxious to play the heavy here. But then perhaps the students have an advantage over me. They are obviously more comfortable with Facebook, and they probably have other social media skills and experiences that I lack. So maybe I should shut up and admit defeat. After all, as of 8:00 AM today, there are NO comments on the blog post in question. The initial tweet from UCBoulder-Anthropology has 2 likes and 2 forwards, and my reply tweet has none. And the original Facebook post has 32 likes, including some prominent archaeologists and anthropologists. Wow, everyone is lining up against me.

In the court of Facebook opinion, I seem to be the clear loser in this affair. Obviously the "new materialism theory" (which is NOT materialist!) is popular and I am just a cranky positivist who can't see the light. But is this a productive direction for scholarship? I have complained in this blog about the "facebookization of online scholarship." You can "like" something buy you can't "dislike" anything. Popularity and superficiality are what count. What are the quality control mechanisms in the court of social media opinion? Are there any?

Well, this post is long enough. It doesn't really say anything about the substantive issues, mainly because I can't decide whether it is appropriate or useful to try to engage my critics in a dialogue, given the situation as described above. I guess I am still trying to figure out social media and its role in scholarship.
19 hours 4 min ago A badger uncovers 'exciting' Bronze Age cremation site near Stonehenge << Archaeological News on Tumblr An ‘exciting’ Bronze Age cremation site near Stonehenge has been uncovered - by a...
19 hours 50 min ago Left Behind and Right Wing Conspiracy Theories << James F. McGrath (Exploring Our Matrix)

Fred Clark recently posted on the connection between the Left Behind series and Right Wing conspiracy theories. The two overlap extensively, with the non-religious leaving out the Rapture, but overlap in many other particulars, such as that the United Nations is a bad thing, and so too would world peace be.

This while various news outlets were reporting that Michele Bachmann was predicting that Barack Obama will become the Antichrist after his presidency. I wonder whether anyone will remember that these individuals turned out to be false prophets, when they eventually do. And I wonder whether anyone will reconsider the end-times approach to politics, and life more generally, as a result of yet another set of predictions failing to come true, or whether they will just say that the individual false prophets were wrong, but to predict in this way is not itself wrong.

But I am even more interested in the question of which kind of conspiracy theory thinking tends to lead to the others. Does Left Behind simply add religion to conspiracy theories that are more widely subscribed to, or does religion of this particular fundamentalist sort give birth to the conspiracy theories? Do people who deny the moon landings gravitate towards Ken Ham's lies about science, or do the latter tend to lead people to the former? Why do some just deny evolution, geology, and astronomy but stop short of asserting that the Earth is flat?

I know there is no direct straight line that uniformly runs from one to the other. But it does seem clear that being skeptical towards authorities, without recognizing one's dependence on authorities, is at the root of a great many dubious viewpoints.

As Paul Braterman reminded us recently, we are all irrational. And so the question must not be merely “why are those others so very irrational?” but “what are my blind spots with regard to my own irrationality?” and “what can be done to minimize the popularity of irrational thinking and the damage caused by it?


conspiracy connect the dots


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20 hours 15 min ago RESTAURO-MUSEI dal 6 all'8 aprile 2016 a Ferrara << Archeomatica: Tecnologie per i Beni Culturali

Dal 6 all’8 aprile 2016 a Ferrara si svolgerà la XXIII edizione di Restauro che da quest'anno prenderà il nome di Salone dell’Economia, della Conservazione, delle Tecnologie e della Valorizzazione dei Beni Culturali e Ambientali.

Diverse le novità dell'edizione 2016 che torna a collocarsi nel mese di aprile ed avrà la durata di tre giorni invece di quattro per permettere ai visitatori e agli espositori di ottimizzare i tempi ed i costi, nel consueto periodo ad esso dedicato, dopo lo slittamento a maggio della scorsa edizione, in concomitanza con l’inaugurazione di Expo Milano 2015. Un’edizione dunque ricca di innovazioni, non solo nei contenuti, che porteranno valore aggiunto alla manifestazione.

20 hours 33 min ago A Companion to Latin Greece (Tsougarakis and Lock, eds) << Corinthian Matters

A Companion to Latin Greece, recently published by Brill, offers 11 essays that provide “an introduction to the study of Latin Greece and a sampler of the directions in which the field of research is moving.” Edited by Nickiphoros Tsougarakis and Peter Lock, the work surveys society, culture, and economy in Greece from the 12th to 14th century (with occasional forays beyonds). As the abstract / book description notes:

LatinGreece“The conquest of the Byzantine Empire by the armies of the Fourth Crusade resulted in the foundation of several Latin political entities in the lands of Greece. The Companion to Latin Greece offers thematic overviews of the history of the mixed societies that emerged as a result of the conquest. With dedicated chapters on the art, literature, architecture, numismatics, economy, social and religious organisation and the crusading involvement of these Latin states, the volume offers an introduction to the study of Latin Greece and a sampler of the directions in which the field of research is moving.”

Sharon Gerstel’s review of the work in Medieval Review does note the lack of substantial discussion and exploration of archaeological evidence from either excavations or surveys, but concludes positively that

What this volume makes clear is the central importance of Latin Greece to the study of the Mediterranean and, indeed, to the study of late medieval and Early Modern Europe. The region’s enduring ties to both the West and Byzantium, its role in agricultural production and the exportation of vital commodities, its mixed population, and its multiple religious confessions, place Latin Greece at the center of current discourses about identity, networks, and globalism. Providing an impressive range of materials, this volume challenges the reader to think critically about local and regional transformations at a time of political uncertainty.

For further information:

Table of Contents

20 hours 35 min ago Early Christian Cyprus: An Outline << Bill Caraher (The New Archaeology of the Mediterranean World)

I was pretty pleased to be asked to co-author a chapter on Early Christian Cyprus for the Oxford Handbook of Early Christian Archaeology. Since I’ll be co-authoring it with the incomparable (and the intensely busy) Jody Gordon, I offered to get things rolling by putting together an outline.

The goal of our chapter is both to present a basic guide to Christian archaeology on Cyprus, as well as to put Early Christian archaeology on the island in the context of larger issues both in modern Cypriot political culture and the historiography of Roman, Late Antique, and Early Byzantine Cyprus.

This is just a draft, and nothing is cast in stone, but I thought I would throw it out there to see what people think…

The Archaeology of Early Christian Cyprus

  1. Early Christianity in a Cypriot Context (<1000)

    1. Pre-Archaeology of Cypriot Christianity

      1. Barnabas (late-6th c.)

      2. The Phaneromene

    2. Archaeological Context

      1. Megaw – typology

      2. Cypriot Archaeologists – often salvage and primarily focused on architecture.

      3. Recent Work: Kopetra, Polis, Maroni, Pyla-Koutsopetria.

    3. Contemporary Political Context

  2. Textual Christianity on Cyprus: Short and Sweet (<1000 words.)

    1. Acts of the Apostles

    2. Epiphanies

    3. Council of Ephesus (431)

    4. Hagiography

      1. Jerome, Vita Hilarionis (4th c.)

      2. Auxibios (5th? c.) (I don’t remember; but local).

      3. John the Almsgiver (Sophronios) and Tykhonas (6th c.)

  3. Christian Archaeology on Cyprus (<4000). This would be the nuts and bolts section of the essay. It would lay out the evidence for Christianity on the island and the basic archaeological problems (dating, excavation approaches, publishing, et c.).

    1. Basilicas (1200 words)

    2. Baptistries (800 words)

    3. Epigraphy (600 words)

    4. Objects

      1. Mosaics

      2. Lamps

      3. Fineware

      4. Seals?

  4. Contexts and Consequences (1200)

    1. Christianization

    2. Connectivity – trade, pilgrimage, and travel

    3. Settlement – towns, cities, capitals, and bishops.

  5. The End of Early Christian Cyprus (800)

    1. Plagues

    2. Wars

    3. Transformation