Fortress Wall of Ancient Roman Colony Ratiaria Found to have Survived Looter Bulldozers

The western fortress wall of the Ancient Roman city of Ratiaria near Bulgaria’s Danube town of Archar, first found in the 1980s, has now been rediscovered almost intact. The archaeologists had thought it had been destroyed during treasure hunting raids with tractors and bulldozers in the 1990s and 2000s. Photo: TV grab from the Bulgarian National[…]

The Battle of Immae and Fall of Queen Zenobia

Queen Zenobia before Emperor Aurelianus. Giovanni Battista Tiepolo (1696–1770). Oil on canvas. Prado Museum. By Dr. Joshua J. Mark / 03.18.2016 Professor of Philosophy Marist College The Battle of Immae (272 CE) was fought between the forces of the Roman emperor Aurelian (270-275 CE) and those of the Palmyrene Empire of Zenobia (267-273 CE) resulting in a Roman victory and, ultimately, the capture of Zenobia and an end[…]

“Dear Venus”: Praying to an Ancient Goddess at the Getty Villa

This summer we invited visitors to the Getty Villa to write and share prayers to the ancient goddess Venus. Here are the themes that emerged. By Bella Anderson / 09.21.2017 “The zither, and night, and Venus, bring delight.” —Ovid, Heroides 3. 116 ff (trans. Showerman) Venus (Greek Aphrodite) was a goddess close to the heart of her people.[…]

Was the College of Augustales at Herculaneum Founded to Cope with Widespread Fluorosis

The pitted teeth of an individual with advanced fluorosis. / Wikimedia Commons By Mary Harrsch / 08.25.2016 Roman Historian Ancient Times A history resource article by Mary Harrsch © 2016 Modern day school children living around Mount Vesuvius are suffering the effects of drinking ground water contaminated by naturally occurring fluoride generated by chemical changes to the volcanic debris[…]

Cannibalism in Roman Egypt

Funerary complex of the 5th Dynasty pharaoh Unas at Saqqara / Photo by Kurohito, Wikimedia Commons By Mary Harrsch / 08.25.2016 Roman Historian Ancient Times A history resource article by Mary Harrsch © 2016 King Unis is one who eats men and lives on gods, Lord of messengers, who dispatches his messages; It is ‘Grasper-of-Forelocks’ living in Kehew Who binds them[…]

A Modern Analysis of Vitruvian Influence on Ancient Roman Temples

Figure 1. 1684 depiction of Vitruvius presenting De Architectura to Augustus (Source: Vitruvius on Architecture by Thomas Gordon Smith) By Shirley N. Chen / 12.04.2015 Purpose Books III and IV of De Architectura will mainly be used to provide an focused analysis of how ‍building principles containing previous knowledge gathered and organized by Vitruvius in combination with his[…]

Italica: Roman city in Santiponce

By Carole Raddato / 04.29.2014 Historian Italica is a well-preserved Roman city located in modern-day Santiponce, 9 kilometres north of Seville in Spain. The city was founded in 206 BC during the Second Punic War (218-202) when the Roman commander Publius Cornelius Scipio settled his Italian veterans on this site following a victory at the Battle of Ilipa. Although the nearby town of Hispalis[…]

Festivals in Ancient Greece and Rome: 9 Fascinating Facts

“Ave, Caesar! Io, Saturnalia!” Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, 1880. / Wikimedia Commons By Cassandra Gill / 06.20.2017 Festivals in ancient Greece and Rome were important periods of time during which people performed “activities that are most often thought of as communications with the superhuman world.” Marked by a variety of unique cultural rituals and traditions, festival days stood in stark[…]

Venus Felix, Genetrix, and Victrix in the Numismatic Record from Augustus to Hadrian: Stagnation to Innovation

Ruins of the Temple of Venus Genetrix, Rome / Wikimedia Commons By Caitlin Ryan / 08.2016 Historical Interpreter Scarborough Museum Abstract Venus is one of the most famous goddesses of the Roman pantheon, known for her grace and beauty. Her likeness was recreated countless times in a variety of different media. She was depicted in[…]

Tages against Jesus: Etruscan Religion in the Late Roman Empire

Sandstone Etruscan relief excavation / Creative Commons By Dr. Dominique Briquel Professor of Archaeology and Latin Université de Paris-Sorbonne Etruscan Studies 10:12 (2007), 153-161 It may seem strange to associate in this way two entities which, at first glance, would seem to have nothing in common. The civilization of the Etruscans, which flourished in Italy[…]

Nevertheless, They Persisted – Women’s Demonstrations in Ancient Rome

The Intervention of the Sabine Women (detail), by Jacques-Louis David, 1799 / Louvre Museum, Paris By Dr. Katherine Huntley / 04.24.2017 Professor of Archaeology and Ancient History Boise State University Protesting was a key part of Roman political life. And protesting was fueled by the fact that the Roman Republic, from its founding in 509BCE[…]

Nero: The Myth and the Actual Story

Nero: had a reputation as an arsonist even in antiquity. Wikimedia Commons    By Dr. Caillan Davenport (left) and Dr. Shushma Malik (right) / 01.19.2017 Caillan: Senior Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History and ARC DECRA Senior Research Fellow, The University of Queensland Malik: Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History, The University of Queensland If asked to[…]

Incitatus: Caligula’s Horse in Popular Myth and Reality

An equestrian statue of a Julio-Claudian prince, originally identified as Caligula. ©Trustees of the British Museum    By Dr. Caillan Davenport (left) and Dr. Shushma Malik (right) / 01.19.2017 Caillan: Senior Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History and ARC DECRA Senior Research Fellow, The University of Queensland Malik: Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History, The University of[…]

An Ancient Roman Vomitorium: NOT a Place to Vomit

A Roman Feast, by Roberto Bompiani, late 19th century / Getty Center, Wikimedia Commons    By Dr. Caillan Davenport (left) and Dr. Shushma Malik (right) / 01.19.2017 Caillan: Senior Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History and ARC DECRA Senior Research Fellow, The University of Queensland Malik: Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History, The University of Queensland After[…]

The Basilica of Maxentius

Reconstruction of the Basilica of Maxentius / Jorgen Hartogs, Vimeo By Katleiah Ramos / 09.30.2013   Introduction Romans lived like they were gods because they built like they were gods – colossal, majestic and structurally remarkable. Many things come to mind when thinking of ancient and imperial Romans. Romans were farmers, conquerors, city planners, and[…]

Roman Mater: Etruscan Influence on the Role of Roman Women

Fresco from the Villa of Livia / Wikimedia Commons By Elizabeth Davis / 03.27.2012 Xavier University Introduction During the early Roman Empire, the role of the upper class married women became a civic duty. Rome’s culture and attitudes towards women developed from a synthesis of several other societies views. Traditionally, Athens has been credited with[…]

Zenobia, Visionary Queen of Ancient Palmyra

Queen Zenobia Addressing Her Soldiers, 1725-1730, Giovanni Battista Tiepolo. Oil on canvas, 102 15/16 x 144 in. National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., 1961.9.42, Samuel H. Kress Collection. Image Courtesy National Gallery of Art, Washington In the 200s A.D. the Empress of the East turned her armies on Rome, and almost won. By Judith Weingarten[…]

The Aristocratic Ethos of the Roman Republic

Cicero denounces Catiline, who sought to overthrow the Roman Republic, fresco by Cesare Maccari, 1889 / Palazzo Madama, Rome By Dr. Nicholas K. Rauh Professor of Classics Purdue University Flowchart of the Roman government / Author provided The results of the constitutional developments at Rome were best expressed by the Republican acronym, SPQR, Senatus Populusque[…]