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Edited by Daniëlle Slootjes and Harm Kaal

New Perspectives on Power and Political Representation from Ancient History to the Present Day offers a unique perspective on political communication between rulers and ruled from antiquity to the present day by putting the concept of representation center stage. It explores the dynamic relationship between elites and the people as it was shaped by constructions of self-representation and representative claims. The contributors to this volume – specialists in ancient, medieval, early-modern and modern history – move away from reductionist associations of political representation with formal aspects of modern, democratic, electoral, and parliamentarian politics. Instead, they contend that the construction of political representation involves a set of discourses, practices, and mechanisms that, although they have been applied and appropriated in various ways in a range of historical contexts, has stood the test of time.

Herodotus’ Autopsy of the Fayoum

Lake Moeris and the Labyrinth of Egypt

O.K. Armayor

From Strabo and Diodorus to Petrie and the pre-sent we have tried to build Herodotus' vast, mysterious, funerary Egyptian Labyrinth and great, man-made Lake Moeris with all manner of pyramids into the Middle-Kingdom ruins of the Fayoum basin, all on the hopeful assumption that Herodotus must have gone to the fifth-century Fayoum merely because he said so. This book constitutes a fundamental re-assessment of the problem and the implications.

Constructions of Greek Past

Identity and Historical Consciousness from Antiquity to the Present

Edited by Hero Hokwerda

In May 1999, a second conference of Hellenists (of all periods and subject areas) from the Dutch-speaking countries was organized in Groningen. The theme of this second conference was ‘Constructions of Greek Past. Identity and Historical Consciousness from Antiquity to the Present.’ The conference theme was described as follows:

When seeking to establish its own identity, a culture (country, people, nation) readily resorts to its own history, which it uses either as an example or as something to react against. In recent years there has been a growing awareness that this process often reveals more about a culture in the present day than the historical era to which it harks back: its own identity, and thus its own history, are ‘constructed’ in this way. The constructional approach is usually applied to the birth of new nation states and the development of their national ideologies, particularly in the nineteenth century. But it can be applied more broadly too.

Greek culture is an excellent subject area for studying this phenomenon even further back in history, precisely because its history is so long and included several ‘Golden Ages’ to which later periods could (and can) hark back. Greek culture still presents itself as a product of Ancient Greek and/or Byzantine culture. However, the problem of continuity in Greek culture has frequently manifested itself, particularly during periods of radical political, ideological or demographic change.

The Homeric influence on the Mycenaean world is therefore also an aspect of this phenomenon. The Homeric world served as an example for later periods, as did the Attic period for the Greeks in the Hellenistic-Roman age. The tensions between the Hellenistic and Roman character of the Greek world had a strong influence on the shaping of the Greek identity during late Antiquity and the Middle Ages. Those tensions still exist today (ellenismós/ellenikótita v. romiosyni).

The theme was designed to bring together Hellenists of all periods and disciplines (literature, language, history, archaeology, ecclesiastical history, sociology etc.) relating to the Greek world. The colloquium sessions were held in Dutch, but the papers are published in English (two in French).

Attractive Performances

Ancient Greek Dance. Three preliminary studies

Frits Naerebout

This book is not another history of the dance in ancient Greece, but wants to lay the groundwork on which such a history should properly be build. The three preliminary studies offered here are, first, an extensive historiography of the subject which seeks to illuminate where we stand at present in reference to the large amount of work done on ancient Greek dance for the past 500 years. Secondly, an exercise in source criticism, embracing both texts and imagery, in order to establish the limits to which we can push any investigation, and thirdly, an attempt at model building to provide an explicit theoretical framework for future research. This is the first time that some of the approaches of the new dance scholarship which has arisen during the past few decades have been systematically applied to the dancing of the ancient world.


W.K. Pritchett

In this book Professor Pritchett offers five original essays under the titles: Thucydides’ Pentekontaetia; Thucydides 1.61.3-5; Diodoros’ Pentekontaetia; The Solar Year of Thucydides; Aetiology sans Topography. The initial lengthy essay focuses on seven crux passages in which Thucydides in Book 1 describes the growth of Athenian power, maintaining against recent critics that they are presented in chronological order. The study combines a review of the manuscript tradition with regard to corruptions in toponyms and numerals and a personal autopsy of the ancient sites. In a separate essay, Pritchett adduces new arguments in defense of Thucydides’ seasonal chronological scheme. In the last essay, he takes sharp issue with a recent publication which attempts to attribute the origin of the ancient accounts of the Messenian wars and the battles of Hysiai, Thyreatis, and Phigaleia to legends evolved at festivals.


W.K. Pritchett

The author's second volume on Pausanias focuses on a collection of over fifty examples where Pausanias is alleged by modern scholars to have made errors in his topographical descriptions of sites and monuments, debating the pros and cons. He vindicates the Periegetes in most cases, finding his most serious error is duplicated in Strabo and Pliny. Tables are offered of figures where distances are given in stades, leading to the observation that various scholars independently hypothesize that alphabetical numerals, easily corruptable, were used at some stage in the transmission of the text. Following his earlier study of wooden cult statues, called xoana, the author collects examples of other statues of wood where the word is not used, noting that wooden statues of athletes are attested as early as 544 BC. Tables of bronze statues are also presented, leading to the conclusion that, although favored by the Romans as booty in war, many bronzes by famous artists still remained in Greece in the second century of our era. A third chapter is devoted to Pausanias' description of ruins, including towns and temples. The Periegete reported more ruins in Arkadia than in any other province. A final chapter collects Pausanias' record of sixty-one festivals and panegyreis. This book will be of interest to topographers, art-historians, and students of Greek religion.

To Date and Not to Date

On the Date and Status of Byzantine Law Books

Thomas Ernst van Bochove

Scientific reserach implies progress. Sometimes, however, progress merely consists of a step back to the past, as in the case of the dating of the Prochiron, one of the Byzantine law books dealt with in this study. Recently, progress seemed to imply that the Prochiron had been issued by Leo the Wise in the year 907. This book sets out to show that the Prochiron was promulgated by Basil the Macedonian in the years 870-879, thus confirming the view of Karl Eduard Zachariä von Lingenthal, one of the first scholars who paved a way in the ‘ungodly jumble’ of Byzantine law books. Of course, the present study does not exclusively deal with the dating of law books: their status appeared to be inextricably bound up with their dating. Moreover, recent research has come up with results that shed new light on the Basilica and the Novels of Leo the Wise. Reason enough to investigate Leo’s legislative intentions….. To date and not to date, that is the issue in the realm of Byzantine legal history.

Henrik Brenkman, Jurist and Classicist

A Chapter from the History of Roman Law as Part of the Classical Tradition

Bernard H. Stolte jr

When the Emperor Justinian promulgated the Digest in 533, he faced the task of providing the court and universities with texts of this part of his codification. Of over 70 manuscripts that must have been produced on that occasion, one may have survived: the so-called codex Florentinus, now in the Biblioteca Laurenziana.
Although itself imperfect, and despite doubts entertained by some as to its precise age, it is the principal source of our knowledge of the Justinian text.
Few scholars have devoted more time and energy to a study of this manuscript than the Dutch jurist Henrik Brenkman (1681-1736). His notebooks, the fruits of a lifetime’s work in preparation of a Digest edition on the basis of the codex Florentinus, have been preserved and are now in the State and University Library of Göttingen. Brenkman’s untimely death prevented the completion of that edition, but the notebooks offer an excellent view of his methods and results. As such their interest is twofold: they demonstrate the way in which the problem of editing a legal text was tackled in the early XVIIIth century, and they contain information still of importance for a present-day student of the Digest text.
This book studies Brenkman and his notebooks from these two points of view. It emphasizes the fact that we see philological work carried out by someone who had been trained to be a lawyer. It also deals with some questions that are still being asked by students of the manuscript tradition of the Digest. Its main purpose, however, is to try and place Brenkman in the history of scholarship, and it argues, as is to be concluded from the subtitle, that both jurists and classicists ought to be interested in Brenkman’s life and work.


Studies on Ancient History and Epigraphy presented to H.W. Pleket


Johan Strubbe

Strubbe, J.H.M. (ed.) Energeia. Studies on Ancient History and Epigraphy presented to H.W. Pleket. 1996
Contents: EBERT, J.: Neue griechische historische Epigramme. GARNSEY, P.: Prolegomenon to a Study of the Land in the Later Roman Empire. HARRIS, W.V.: Writing and Literacy in the Archaic Greek City. HERRMANN, P.: Milet unter Augustus. Erkentnisse aus einem Inschriften-Neufund. KLOFT, H.: Überlegungen zum Luxus in der frühen römischen Kaiserzeit. KOLB, F.: Stadt und Land im antiken Kleinasien: der Testfall Kyaneai. MIGEOTTE, L.: Les finances des cités grecques au-delà du primitivisme et du modernisme. PETZL, G.: Vom Wert alter Inschriftenkopien.
DMAHA 16 (1996), 198 p. + 2 pocket maps. Cloth. - 40.00 EURO, ISBN: 9050634265

Constructing Messapian Landscapes

Settlement Dynamics, Social Organization and Culture Contact in the Margins of Graeco-Roman Italy


Gert-Jan Burgers

Over the last three decades, archaeologists have progressively embarked on field-walking projects all around the Mediterranean basin. The aim of most of these projects is to investigate the ancient settlement and landscape dynamics of specific Mediterranean regions. They greatly contribute to the new liveliness which characterizes present-day classical archaeology, not only by introducing new research methods but also, and in particular, by widening its subject matter to include the history of societies in the margins of the Graeco-Roman urban world. It is within this recent tradition that the present book has been written; the author aims to examine the ancient settlement and societal dynamics of the Brindisi region, in the north-east of the Salento peninsula. The field surveys indicate that during the pre-Roman period the regional society was characterized by processes of centralization and urbanization. Subsequently, from the 3rd century BC onwards, it gradually integrated into the Roman orbit. Burgers emphasizes an active indigenous role in the succesive colonial situations in southern Italy. He focuses on the internal dynamics of the local communities and investigates how social strategies manifested themselves, especially in external contacts and in the organization of settlement and landscape.