Very Old Europe

New work by Sophocles? Hesiod? Lucian? Euripides? A precursor to the Illiad?

All coming up, thanks to satellitte imaging technology and a century-old trove of manuscripts brought to Britain from Egypt.

In the past four days alone, Oxford’s classicists have used it to make a series of astonishing discoveries, including writing by Sophocles, Euripides, Hesiod and other literary giants of the ancient world, lost for millennia. They even believe they are likely to find lost Christian gospels, the originals of which were written around the time of the earliest books of the New Testament. …

Oxford academics have been working alongside infra-red specialists from Brigham Young University, Utah. Their operation is likely to increase the number of great literary works fully or partially surviving from the ancient Greek world by up to a fifth. It could easily double the surviving body of lesser work – the pulp fiction and sitcoms of the day.

Exciting time to be a classicist, no?

This entry was posted in A Fistful Of Euros, Culture and tagged by Doug Merrill. Bookmark the permalink.

About Doug Merrill

Freelance journalist based in Tbilisi, following stints in Atlanta, Budapest, Munich, Warsaw and Washington. Worked for a German think tank, discovered it was incompatible with repaying US student loans. Spent two years in financial markets. Bicycled from Vilnius to Tallinn. Climbed highest mountains in two Alpine countries (the easy ones, though). American center-left, with strong yellow dog tendencies. Arrived in the Caucasus two weeks before its latest war.

5 thoughts on “Very Old Europe

  1. Indeed! This is the time when we get to find out we’ve been wrong all along. I’m rather looking forward to it.

  2. Very much so. Those who constantly diss the usefulness of the liberal arts forget that much of our intellectual tradition, our ways of thinking, are founded on the ancient liberal traditions of education. Beyond the simple value to scholars, this will give us more insight on how that world thought, and possibly help influence how we think today. The impact on my children as they reach college age can only be guessed at this point.

  3. Bruce,

    In america, though I wouldn’t be surprised if the
    story is the same in europe, there are an awful lot
    of liberal arts programs that would be better named
    “Studies in Marxism.” In all to many cases liberal
    arts programs avoid “our intellectual tradition” or
    “dead white male” thinking or the “ancient liberal
    traditions” like the plague.

  4. If I were you I would use the term “Classical” Education” rather than “Liberal” that word scares many poeple these days.

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