Latina lingua aeterna
A Vote For Latin by Harry Mount, from the December 3rd, 2007, New York Times:
At first glance, it doesn’t seem tragic that our leaders don’t study Latin anymore. But it is no coincidence that the professionalization of politics — which encourages budding politicians to think of education as mere career preparation — has occurred during an age of weak rhetoric, shifting moral values, clumsy grammar and a terror of historical references and eternal values that the Romans could teach us a thing or two about. As they themselves might have said, “Roma urbs aeterna; Latina lingua aeterna.”
Latin Lessons: O Tempora, O Mores: reader letters to the New York Times in response to Harry Mount's article.
Full Disclosure: In April I was contacted by a photo researcher from Hyperion, Harry Mount's publisher, asking permission to reprint one of my Italy photos in the US edition of Mount's new book Carpe Diem: Put A Little Latin In Your Life. I would receive photographer credit but no compensation. I said I'd give my permission in exchange for a classroom set of the book (I'm a teacher, darn it). The researcher told me that she'd see what could be done, but I never heard back from her again.
Gardens of Lucullus found
From Richard Owen writing in the Times of London: Builders dig up lost pleasure garden of the ancient Romans.
"Mosaics from the fabled Gardens of Lucullus, one of the pioneering influences on gardening, have been brought to light after 2,000 years by archaeologists in Rome.
"The vast terraced gardens, or horti, covered what is now the built-up area above the Spanish Steps. The first known attempt in the West to “tame nature” through landscaping, the gardens were laid out around a patrician villa in the middle of the 1st century BC by Lucius Licinius Lucullus, one of Ancient Rome’s most celebrated generals, after he retired in disillusion from war and politics."
Latin 7th Graders
Other photos of the 2006 International Banquet can be found here. Click any thumbnail to get to that photo's own page, and then click on the "All Sizes" icon just above the photo to download the full-size, full-resolution version.
Caroline Lawrence's amazing Roman Mysteries series of young adult historical mystery novels will be produced as a five-hour television miniseries for the BBC, with a planned release on British television in 2007 or 2008. Filming will take place in Greece, Malta and Bulgaria.
Many BBC productions have very high production values; the best (mostly due to the high-powered cast of Shakespearean actors) was the landmark 1976 miniseries I, Claudius.
Ms. Lawrence visited my school in March 2005 and spoke to my sixth-grade students. I have a small photo gallery from her trip. If you scroll down to the bottom third of Ms. Lawrence's July 2005 fanmail page, you can read letters and see scrolls made by my students. There's also a great photo of Ms. Lawrence surrounded by all of the students who came to hear her speak.
How To Talk To A Mortal, If You Must
How To Talk To A Mortal, If You Must, the first panel in a new case of Supernatural Law, featuring Wolff & Byrd, Counselors of the Macabre by Batton Lash.
(On the Supernatural Law website, just click the large image to see the next page. There are over twenty pages in the story so far -- new pages are added every Monday and Thursday.)
Baths of Caracalla
The Museo della Civiltà Romana in Rome (often just known as EUR after the neighborhood it's found in) houses an amazing, archaeologically-accurate scale model of the city of Rome at the time of the emperor Constantine. I have a set of 69 photos of this model on my Flickr photosite.
Yesterday, I was contacted by an editor for Phaidon Press about including this picture of the Baths of Caracalla in an upcoming book on the history of building design. We'll see how it goes.
Mt Vesuvius: A View From Space
Here's a photo of Mt. Vesuvius taken from space, available from the NASA website.
There is also a Mt. Vesuvius webcam!
SPQR stands for Senatus PopulusQue Romanus (The Senate and Roman People), and worked for the Romans in much the same way that USA works for the United States.
An eighth-grade student in a school skit plays me, dozing off during a faculty meeting.
The Tully's coffee cup is completely accurate, but I'm not sure how often I've worn a propeller beanie.