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Exhibition Lecture: Time and Cosmos in Greco-Roman Astrology
This lecture will consist of a brief introduction to the historical
development and the main characteristics of Greco-Roman astrology, to be
followed by a survey of the theoretical and practical importance of
accurate time-measurement in the practice of horoscopy and other
Inscribing Multilingual Texts in Egyptian Temples of the Graeco-Roman Period
With the linguistic history of Egypt writ large on objects and monuments, individuals of the Ptolemaic and Roman periods (ca. 4th cent. BCE to 4th cent. CE) were constantly confronted by visual records of the past. Temples in particular were spaces where rulers and elite had been displaying their religious piety while also affirming political allegiances or exhibiting their social status for millennia. The Egyptian temples of the pharaonic period provided templates for the massive construction projects that were underwritten by foreign rulers during the first millennium BCE. However, the unique innovations in architecture and decoration of those same buildings are a testament to the changing dynamics of post-pharaonic Egypt. This talk will focus on the function of inscriptions and reliefs placed within Egyptian temples.
Medicine and the Humanities from Ancient to Modern
The Varied Fortunes of Galen
Since the emergence of Greek medicine as an independent field of study in the time of Hippocrates, there has been debate about its status vis-à-vis the humanities. In the second century A.D., the physician Galen took considerable pains to identify medicine as a foundational liberal art rather than as a manual or menial trade. The subsequent fate of his vast corpus—what was read when, how, and by whom—is illustrative of the push and pull of ancient medicine between science and the humanities up to the present day. Unlike the writing of his more literary contemporaries, Galen's corpus had an extensive, pragmatic role in professional training. He formed the cornerstone of medical education until the 17th century and his role there persisted even into the 19th century. It was only as his medical popularity waned that study of him among philologists began to gain momentum. This talk will investigate the issues at stake in Galen's time and then follow the fate of his influence through the ages into the modern debate on the role of humanities in medical education.
Globalising the Mediterranean's Iron Age
The Mediterranean’s Iron Age – roughly 1200-600 BCE – may be regarded as one of its most dynamic periods of history. Although it is not its first era in which people across the sea exchanged goods, ideas, values, customs, practices, and technologies, the difference is the scale to which this occurred. The interactions that resurged from the tenth century onwards eclipsed their Bronze Age antecedents in geographical, material and ideological scope. The period is characterized perhaps most of all by the movement of peoples from their homeland to areas far away on an unprecedented scale, notably the settlement of Greeks and Phoenicians in the central and western Mediterranean, which began in the ninth and eighth centuries.
Rostovtzeff Lecture Series: Egyptian versus Greek in Late Antique Egypt: The Struggle of Coptic for an Official Status, I
An Egyptian Exception?
During the first three centuries of its history, Coptic, the final stage of the Egyptian language written with Greek letters, was only used for literary purposes and private correspondence but not for contracts between individuals, documents sent by individuals to the authorities, or internal administrative communication—areas in which the Greek language had a monopoly. This situation is unique in comparison with what is observed in other provinces of the Roman Empire and cannot be explained by a legal prohibition.
Anatolia Before Assyrians
New Perspectives on Urbanization and State Formation in Central Anatolia in the Light of Recently Excavated Early Bronze Age Monumental Structures at Kanesh
Rostovtzeff Lecture Series: Egyptian versus Greek in Late Antique Egypt: The Struggle of Coptic for an Official Status, IV
The Role of the Church in the Growth of Legal Coptic
This lecture will present an unpublished set of wooden tablets from Panopolis (now in the Louvre) attesting the use of Coptic for tax receipts in the 6th century and revisit the archive of Apa Abraam bishop of Hermonthis (c. 595-621) and of the monastery he founded—the largest group of legal Coptic texts prior to the Arab Conquest. These texts will lead us to examine the role of the Church and especially monasticism in the development of Coptic for official transactions.
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