Book Review: An introduction to the ancient world for young adults

This slim volume of eight chapters will be of interest not just to classicists but also to those teaching in, researching and studying media, film, theatre studies and gender studies. The editors, both classicists, currently teach at the University of Akron, Ohio (Burns) and at University of Texas at San Antonio. There is no information on the six contributors.

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Book Announcement: Varian Studies Volume One: Varius

Varian Studies Volume One: Varius now available from Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Hardback, pp575, £70.99 / $119.95

Cambridge Scholars Publishing is pleased to announce the publication of Varian Studies Volume One: Varius by Leonardo de Arrizabalaga y Prado.

Varius is the nomen of the Roman emperor misnamed Elagabalus or Heliogabalus. These are names of the Syrian sun god Elagabal, whose high priest Varius was while emperor. There is no evidence that he was ever so called when alive. Thus named, his posthumous legendary or mythical avatar thrives, in academic prose and popular imagination, as a Semitic monster of cruelty, depravity, fanaticism, mockery and extravagance. Recently, this monster has metamorphosed into an anarchist saint and martyr of gay liberation.
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Book Announcement: Insularity, Identity and Epigraphy in the Roman World

Insularity, Identity and Epigraphy in the Roman World now available from Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Hardback, pp348, £64.99 / $109.95

Cambridge Scholars Publishing is pleased to announce the publication of Insularity, Identity and Epigraphy in the Roman World, edited by Javier Velaza.

This book explores the subject of islands, their essence and identity, their isolation and their relationships in the Ancient world. It investigates Greek and Roman concepts of insularity, and their practical consequences for the political, economic and social life of the Empire. The contributions examine whether being related to an island was an externally or internally distinctive feature, and whether a tension between insularity and globalisation can be detected in this period. The book also looks at whether there is an insular material culture, an island-based approach to sacredness, or an island-based category of epigraphy. Continue reading

Book Review: Teaching Classics in English Schools, 1500-1840

After a briskly detailed overview of mediaeval education, where Donatus and Priscian were important texts, in chapter two, A. (the senior classics master at Pocklington School) identifies, as a—or the—key moment, Colet’s foundation of St Paul’s school in 1510, not beholden to any ecclesiastical body, but to the Mercers’ Company, and intended to prepare boys for roles in society as well as in the church (A. pertinently quotes Erasmus on this development). To be sure, the Latin authors recommended by Colet for reading (Lactantius, Prudentius and others) were Christian, but this austere precept was not followed for long.

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Book Review: Ancient Warfare: Introducing Current Research, Volume 1

Geoff Lee, Helène Whittaker, Graham Wrightson (ed.), Ancient Warfare: Introducing Current Research, Volume 1.   Newcastle upon Tyne:  Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015.  Pp. xvi, 361.  ISBN 9781443876940.  £52.99.

Reviewed by Carlos Villafane, University of Liverpool (

The chapters in this volume are the product of the International Ancient Warfare Conference, held at the National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth in September 2013. Despite the large number of chapters—18—, the editors make it clear from the preface that these are just some of the papers presented at the conference. What is unclear is whether there will be a second volume of the same conference (the volume is named Ancient Warfare: Introducing Current Research, Volume I), or simply that subsequent conferences will bear fruit for the subsequent volumes. The latter would make sense, since the conference has now taken place annually and expanded from Wales to Sweden.

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