Friday, April 18, 2014

Episode R2 - Arabia Felix

“His Majesty…has dispatched a few days ago by the vessel Greenland a group of scholars, who will travel by way of the Mediterranean to Constantinople, and thence through Egypt to Arabia Felix, and subsequently return by way of Syria to Europe; they will on all occasions seek to make new discoveries and observations for the benefit of scholarship…” – Copenhagen Post, 12th January, 1761

Carsten Niebuhr survived malaria, earthquakes, civil wars, bandits, plagues and the deaths of all his colleagues to successfully complete the first modern scientific expedition to the Near East.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Episode R1 - The Broken Stone

“To speak the name of the dead is to make them live again.” – Ancient Egyptian saying

Rediscovered two millennia after its creation, the Rosetta Stone provided two brilliant scholars with the key to unlocking the history of ancient Egypt.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

The Ancient World - Rediscovery

Anniversaries can be fun!  Unless you’ve forgotten to buy a gift, and your wife has gotten you something really great - that can be problematic.  But I’m here to talk about the fun kind.  This April 4 will be the second anniversary of my posting Episode 1 of “The Ancient World.”  So I thought it would be a nice, resonant date for launching my new podcast (mini-)series, “The Ancient World – Rediscovery.”  I say (mini-)series since it’s both my intention and expectation that the new series will run a dozen or fewer episodes.  (Mini-) is in parentheses since, well, “The Ancient World” was also originally supposed to only run for a dozen episodes, so that shows you how well I can plan sometimes. 

What will the series be about?  This is one book you CAN judge by its cover.  Awhile back, I started thinking that it might be fun to trace the rediscovery of some of these ancient civilizations in the modern era.  Not only would give the original series a nice sense of symmetry, and let me explore some other historical periods, but I was also pretty sure there’d be some interesting stories to tell along the way.  So I picked a number of re-discoveries that I think tie in well with the original series, started researching and writing about them, and – like I said – intend to post the first episode this April 4. 

Technically-speaking, I’m doing my best to keep the process seamless for you, the TAW listener:  same website, same iTunes subscription, same social media links, etc.  If you’re already subscribed (and thanks for staying subscribed!) the first episode should pop right up and you’ll be off and running.  Thanks again for listening, and I hope you enjoy the new series!  - Scott C.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

TAW Wrap Party & Mike Duncan Interview

I just got clued into this recent Mike Duncan interview on Podcast 411, where he (very accurately!) relates the story of how The Ancient World podcast got started. Enjoy!

And here’s the scoop on the TAW Wrap Party: There’s a bar right down the street, where my wife and I (and maybe a few friends) plan to plant ourselves for a few hours, in the hopes of sharing a few drinks, stories, and seasons greetings with any TAW listeners who’d like to swing by. If you’re coming from out of town, and want to make a truly “historic” weekend of it, I’d certainly recommend a visit to two of San Francisco’s best museums: The Asian Art Museum, and the Legion of Honor, both of which have permanent exhibitions with plenty of amazing ancient art. Oh, and the statue of Ashurbanipal is located right outside the Asian Art Museum, so don’t miss that! And then of course there are also the million other things you can do in San Francisco during any given weekend. I’m sure you’ll figure it out.

Saturday, November 16, 8 – 11PM
Spitfire Rose
1790 San Jose Avenue
San Francisco, CA  94112Saturday November 16, 8 - 11PM
Spitfire Rose
1790 San Jose Ave.
San Francisco, CA

Hope to see you there!

Scott C.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Episode 35 - On The Verge

“Rome was not a monarchy, but a free City, and they had made up their minds to open their gates even to an enemy sooner than to a king.  It was the universal wish that whatever put an end to liberty in the City should put an end to the City itself.” – Livy, The History of Rome, Book 2 

Publius Valerius Poplicola overcame Roman distrust and Etruscan aggression to set the young Republic onto firm foundations.  Aristagoras’ failed attempt to capture the island of Naxos led to open warfare between Greece and Persia.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Episode 34 - Democracy and Republic, Part 2

“The Athenians, when ruled by tyrants, were no better in war than their neighbors, but freed from tyrants they were far superior.  This shows that when they were constrained they let themselves be defeated, since they were working for an overlord, but when they were freed each one was keen to do the deed for himself.” - Herodotus

Delivered from Spartan destruction, the Athenians were forced to defend their new democracy against the Thebans and Chalsidians.  Shocked by a horrific crime, the Romans followed the guidance of Brutus, exiled Tarquin the Proud and declared their first Republic.