Last session we completed our exploration of the Roman Empire from the end of the Flavian dynasty as far as Marcus Aurelius (known as the Antonine period), ending with a meeting to talk about his “Meditations”, for which members were asked in advance to select a few for discussion. That went very well. So that is it for the Empire for now.
The aim now is to return to the Greeks, and take a close examination of the Histories of Herodotus, in some depth. This is the main source for the events leading up to the Persian War invasions, and the War itself. It furthermore supplies a great amount of historical information for the Archaic period. We'll be reading the overall work book by book, so it will likely take some time to cover all nine books of the original. This is all in translation, of course – no knowledge of Classical languages is expected, or indeed any previous knowledge of Classics generally.
Although we have touched on Herodotus, this year we are trying something new – reading the entire work, book by book. We meet on Thursday mornings roughly once a month. No previous knowledge is assumed – we use translations. However, if anyone would like to try and learn Classical Greek from scratch, we may well be able help – just get in touch. Or, if you already know a bit of Latin, and would like to brush it up with a little reading we have a (very small) group reading some Latin together (this applies to Greek too).
If anyone is interested in joining the group, and/or learning Classical Greek language, and/or in reading some Latin together, please let me know.
Gordon Gallacher (Sept 2020)