Minerva Magazine 202

• The gods of Dura-Europos
• Making a splash
• Secrets of their craft
• All creatures great and small
• Visions of Mary Magdalene
• Eleusinian mysteries…

Making a splash

How did water go from being something to fear to a place of privilege in Greece and Rome? Karen Eva Carr plunges into the cultural history of swimming.…

Secrets of their craft

Many metalworkers and ceramicists in Renaissance Europe seemingly had no qualms about killing a lizard – or other animal – for their art. Pamela Smith investigates the intriguing practice of life-casting that turned nature into art, and why artisan authors recorded practical knowledge in words.…

The gods of Dura-Europos

From the worship of local Syrian protector gods to Christianity, many different religions flourished in the cosmopolitan crossroads city of Dura-Europos. Jen Baird brings us face to face with the diverse divine through the art of this ancient site.…

All creatures great and small

Animal art over thousands of years paints a picture of the ways we live with and study different species, from Roman hunting hounds to swarms of bees, as Lucia Marchini investigates.…

Visions of Mary Magdalene

In early Christian art, Mary Magdalene was a key figure in the Resurrection of Christ, as first witness and ‘apostle to the apostles’. Diane Apostolos-Cappadona explores how her significance was set in stone, tiled on walls, and carved in wood and ivory.…

The Cambridge Companion to Thucydides

Review by Diana Bentley Nearly two and a half millennia after it was written, Thucydides’ History of the Peloponnesian War not only remains vibrantly alive and regularly referred to in discussions of modern conflict and politics, but is a rich subject of scholarly study and debate. Although left unfinished, Thucydides’…

Moche murals revealed

Archaeologists working at the Moche site of Pañamarca, which is in western Peru, have uncovered intriguing depictions of a two-faced figure among the murals of its pillared hall. This building, which archaeologists believe may have been the most important at the site, was partially excavated in 2010, and has more…

Colours of ancient Egypt

Painting the zodiac Colourful ceiling paintings including the signs of the zodiac have been revealed at the temple of Esna in Egypt. Executed in relief, the images also depict planets and other constellations, snakes, crocodiles, and hybrid creatures such as a four-winged bird with a crocodile’s head and snake’s tail.…

Gonbad-e QĀbus, 1934

As he made his journey through the green steppe, Robert Byron (1905-1941) could see his destination 20 miles away:‘a small cream needle stood up against the blue of the mountains’, as he wrote in The Road to Oxiana, the account of his 1933-1934 travels around Afghanistan and Persia with Christopher…

Eleusinian Mysteries

Eleusis – modern Elefsina – is in the spotlight as European Capital of Culture. Dalu Jones visits its ancient remains to enter the realm of the Eleusinian Mysteries, secret rites honouring the renewal of life.…

Great Kingdoms of Africa

Review by Nigel Fletcher-Jones This volume brings together eight historians of Africa under the editorship of John Parker (formerly at SOAS, University of London) to discuss the origins and structure of kingdoms through time and across the continent – from ancient Egypt and Nubia (the earliest known African kingdoms) to…

Corpus of Indus Seals and Inscriptions: Volume 3.3

Review by Andrew Robinson The Indus civilisation – which flourished c.2500-1900 BC – was about twice the size of its equivalent in Egypt or neighbouring Mesopotamia. In its own way, it was as extraordinary as those civilisations, with its technically sophisticated cities such as Harappa and Mohenjo-daro, utopian absence of…

Minerva Magazine 201

• The rise of royalty in prehistoric Europe
• Exploring interpretations of the Fayum mummy portraits
• Wooden wonders at Herculaneum
• Drinking and decadence in the ancient Persian and Greek worlds
• Touring Siena’s medieval monuments…

1 2 3 18