Author Archives: Matthew

About Matthew

I am a PhD student in Classics at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. I do work on Late Antique Christian Latin, with a special focus on Pope Leo I. I also collect stamps and Playmobil Vikings and am fond of ruins.

Review of ‘Latrinae et Foricae: Toilets in the Roman World’ by Barry Hobson

Latrinae et Foricae: Toilets in the Roman World by Barry Hobson My rating: 5 of 5 stars In the words of a popular children’s book, Everyone Poops. This means that historians should be asking themselves, to quote the title of … Continue reading

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“It’s not a person, damn it, it’s a Borg!” (Hypostasising Hugh)

The quotation in the title of this post is a line from Capt Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) to Guinan (Whoopi Goldberg) in Star Trek: The Next Generation, Season 5, Episode 23, ‘I, Borg.’ The Enterprise has on board a Borg … Continue reading

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How do you want to live (truly live) your life?

My friend and fellow ancient historian Katie posted a link to an article on brain pickings called ‘The Shortness of Life: Seneca on Busyness and the Art of Living Wide Rather than Living Long.’ Seneca was a very clever guy, … Continue reading

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My library — had I the wealth and space

Sometimes I think, ‘If I had the money and the space, what would my personal library look like?’ One of my friends said that he’d rebind all his Star Wars novels in leather given the money and opportunity! I don’t … Continue reading

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The Wood Beyond the World by William Morris

The Wood Beyond the World by William Morris My rating: 3 of 5 stars William Morris is one of those craftsmen/artists/thinkers that intrigue and inspire me — one of an old breed of mediaevalist who believed in mediaevalism and the … Continue reading

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Egypt had history while Greece had myth

This is a theme I’ve written on before, but I can’t shake the wonderment I have of the sheer bulk of ancient history — especially ancient Egypt! This bulk was brought home to me again today while perusing the appendices … Continue reading

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What makes a classic?

I once flew from Cyprus to Egypt and was stuck in Larnaca airport during a very long delay with a somewhat paranoid guy who does security for missionary organisations. One of the topics that briefly surfaced in our strange conversation … Continue reading

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Movies that would be different with the Three Laws of Robotics

First, so you know what’s going on, Isaac Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics: A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm. A robot must obey the orders given to … Continue reading

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All-embracing research – someday

Sometimes I joke that/feel like I am doing a PhD on everything — I have to know about and/or discuss ecclesiastical and political history in Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages, canon law, christology-theology, palaeography, textual criticism, the early … Continue reading

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Ausonius vs the Romantics

Ausonius by Ausonius My rating: 4 of 5 stars Ausonius (d. AD 395) is not necessarily the best regarded of ancient poets — but his contemporaries really liked him. In his introduction to this edition/translation, H G Evelyn White at … Continue reading

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