Monday, May 28, 2012

Episode 7 - Between Lions and Men

“As there are no pacts of faith between lions and men,
nor do wolves and lambs have spirit in kind,…nor for us two
will there be oaths;…
Recollect your every skill.  Now the need is very great
to be a spearman and brave warrior.” – Achilles, the Iliad

The Mycenaean Greeks melded their warrior ethos with Minoan artistry to rule over an Aegean empire extending to the shores of ancient Troy.  The Aryans, distant relatives of the Mitanni, imported their Vedic culture into Northern India by chariot and sword.  Meanwhile, China’s Shang Dynasty, after ousting the corrupt Xia to build a mighty Bronze Age kingdom, saw the Mandate of Heaven pass to the Zhou.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Episode 6 - The New Kingdoms

After expelling the Hyksos, the rulers of Egypt’s 18th Dynasty led their New Kingdom in an unprecedented drive for territorial expansion.  In Syria and the Levant, they were forced to contend with powerful new states forged by the Hurrians and the Hittites.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

A Message to Listeners

First off, thanks for listening!  I really enjoy making this podcast, but it makes the effort all the more rewarding to see the subscription numbers slowly climb.  So if you know anyone else who might be interested in The Ancient World, please feel free to spread the word.  For those who don't know, the podcast is also up on iTunes, which makes it super-easy to subscribe.  You can also post a review there if you'd like.  If you have any other feedback, you’re welcome to post (or message me) at the Facebook contact link.  Either way, I’d love to hear from you!
Now a bit of logistics:  Remember April?  Ah, that was a lovely month, with every weekend free so I could get some traction getting this thing off the ground.  Unfortunately, such things never last.  The next few months have just enough work and personal travel to throw me off my weekly podcast schedule.  My plan is to get the next episode up on May 20, then hopefully post additional episodes on May 27 and June 3, which (again, I’m hoping) should take us up to the Bronze Age Collapse – you know, that period around 1,200 BC when the hand of fate picked up the regional etch-a-sketch and gave it a good, hard shake.   After that, I’ll probably be a few weeks before I’m able to post again.  But never fear, I am 110% committed to completing this project, so please stay subscribed and await further updates.
On the brighter side (for those of you who enjoy this podcast):  I don’t think 12 episodes are quite going to do it.  As I proceed through this effort, I’m finding that my nice, tidy 12-episode outline is slowly expanding and re-shuffling as I come across more new information I want to include and different ways I want to approach the material.  So, 12 will probably become more like 15 by the time things are done.  But I’m happy to keep making them as long as you keep listening!
Thanks again for supporting the podcast, I really appreciate it!
Scott C.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Episode 5 - Blind-sided

“I was asleep upon my bed, having become weary…like a snake of the necropolis. As I came to, I awoke to fighting, and found that it was an attack of the bodyguard. If I had quickly taken weapons in my hand, I would have made the wretches retreat with a charge! But there is none mighty in the night, none who can fight alone.” – Amenemhet I

In the turbulent period between 2,000 and 1,500 BC, Egyptian rulers were not the only ones caught off guard. After rising to new heights, Minoan Crete, Hammurabi’s Babylon and Middle Kingdom Egypt all fell victim to disaster and foreign invasion.