Weekend Reading: Defiantly Cheerful

You know, sometimes Friday comes around and I’ve just got… nothing!

It’s been a rough week. Classics Twitter has been full of upset and discontent and worse. The news is full of Brexit chaos. Work has been so hectic that I’ve given up all hope of writing Christmas cards (sorry, friends and family!). I’m about a week behind with the mountain of emails (sorry, work people!). I’ve been rained on so many times that I’ve run out of dry shoes. And this morning the bin men went off with the lid of my bin.

In defiance of it all, I’m wearing a Christmas jumper. I don’t know if it will help, but I’m giving it a shot.

So today’s post is a collection of nice things from other people, since I’m short of happy thoughts to share myself. I hope you find something here to enjoy!

If, like me, you want to build something fun over Christmas but don’t have the budget for the new Lego Colosseum set (I know at least three people who have it or are getting it, and I am VERY JEALOUS!), then here’s my recommendation: a set of print-outs to purchase (to be published next week), with which you can build the most amazing Labyrinth and Knossos Throne Room play-set. It’s the latest brilliant idea from Greek Myth Comix, and I’m dying to give it a go – if I ever make it to the end of the December Marking Marathon, that is. Here’s a live build recording from this morning to give you a taster: https://www.pscp.tv/w/1LyGBdzdVWOxN.

If you’re into Classical Reception in cinema, Tony Keen’s very popular Ancient Greece and Rome on the Big Screen online course is coming back in January. You can book for the whole thing, or for individual sessions. If I had time, I would definitely be signing up for this!

One here for the Homer fans: the Reading Greek Tragedy Online group ran an Odyssey ‘Round the World 24-hour event this week, with performances of the Odyssey recorded by students, lecturers and actors from all over the world. You can find the full playlist here: it really does qualify as ‘epic’! Check out the archive too – during the pandemic they’ve generated a very impressive collection of tragedy recordings (and the posters are beautiful too!).

Finally… Ancient World Magazine are looking for writers to contribute to a special Black History Month series in February, so if you’re interested in writing an article on African peoples in the ancient world or Classics in the African diaspora, do contact the team.

They’re also looking for supporters so that they can pay some of their contributors (often students or recent graduates) for articles: so if you like their work and feel able to support them with a small amount of money – or even to sponsor an article – take a look.

This week from around the Classical Internet


Fifth century mosaic in the Cotswolds – The Guardian

Fayum portrait analysis – University of Utah

Phoenician moat discovered – Heritage Daily

Picture Pun Competition Results – Hellene School Travel


Comfort Classics: Josh Nudell

Comfort Classics: Steve O’Sullivan

Roman Gardens: Victoria Austen – Classical Fix

Quaestiones in magica: Antony Lee – Roman Magic

Comment and opinion

Aristotle and Management Consulting – The Classical Association

Juvenal, Boris Johnson and a fish – A Don’s Life

Reception and Trojan Women – Classicalstudiesman

The glamour of the academic life – The Retiring Academic

Exploring mosaics – History Extra

Delphic maxims – Medium

A tribute to Miriam Griffin – CUCD Bulletin

The sad origin of amber – The Historian’s Hut

Oracular dice – Roman Times

Feuds over the Rosetta Stone – The Spectator

Facebook and stolen antiquities – Slate

Netflix’s Barbarians – The Spectator

Podcasts, video and other media

Where do monsters come from? – Alliterative

Herodotus and Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey – Herodotus Helpline

Portraits, with Caroline Lawrence – What did they do before?

From Classical Studies Memes for Hellenistic Teens

5 thoughts on “Weekend Reading: Defiantly Cheerful

  1. There’s always next year to look forward to – we are usually a year or so behind fads in the US who have brought up the delights that is trick or treating, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, a rabid need for the next iPhone which has a few more features but a whole lot more expensive (don’t worry folks, it still has the same built in obsolescence) etc, so litigation is just a few months away…. Luckily our lawyers NEVER encourage anyone to make a claim.

    Sorry to hear your bin men have lid envy but on the positive side, you do have a Christmas jumper and Lego, plus a kick arse blog.

    Keep smiling.

    Liked by 2 people

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