Thursday, January 13, 2011

Why to study Antiquity

I thoroughly enjoyed Mary Beard's post yesterday concerning her recent visit to the Colossi of Memnon.   Although I must admit that I would have not taken the trouble to search out these towering 14th c. BC artifacts personally, known to the Romans as statues that could sing, I feel very satisfied that Mary should do  so.

If you have time to examine her report, be sure to follow the indicated links, they are an education in themselves. The sheer oddity of much of what one encounters in classical studies--imagine a woman of Roman nobility, a tourist, having some self-composed Sapphic verses inscribed in Greek on the leg of one of the two statues--is one small yet fascinating part of the wider adventure of attempting to understand civilizations far differently reasoned than our own.

Photo: Wikicommons Media