A couple of nice links that have come my way recently:
1) Poly Mags: “The Polytechnic Magazine is the in-house magazine of the Regent Street Polytechnic, founded by Quintin Hogg. It was published sometimes weekly, sometimes fortnightly and sometimes monthly – and forms a wide-ranging record of a unique institution at the heart of London. The magazines have been scanned and made freely available at, where you can browse and search issues from 1879 to 1960.” At the moment, the second post down on the tumblr blog is a polite but exasperated complaint about noisy chess players in the Reading Room (“While anxious to appear tolerant and practice tolerance towards thoughtless people, it yet seems to me most unreasonable…”). (Thanks, Leslie!)
2) The Antiquary’s Shoebox: A Selection of Articles from Various Journals in the Fields of Classics and Archaeology (“This site collects a few articles that either captured my fancy, or, more often, were referred to elsewhere onsite — so that it finally seemed a bit unfair not to provide the text of them onsite as well. … All journal articles onsite are in the public domain, of course”). There are quite a few articles from American Journal of Philology, Classical Journal, Classical Philology, Classical Review, etc., each with a tart summary provided (“J. P. Postgate: Review of La Patria di Properzio by Giulio Urbini: A savage little review: first a sneer, then a guffaw, and ends in a sniff”). (Via Anatoly.)


  1. Since the Quintin who founded the Regent Street Poly, the Hoggs have alternated the names Douglas and Quintin for the eldest son in succeeding generations. Some 15 years ago, Quintin I’s great-great grandson, also Quintin, was an intern on the newspaper in London where I was then managing editor. His grandfather, Quintin I’s grandson, had been MP for St Marylebone in London (and also a cabinet minister, ending his political career as Lord Chancellor), and a pub in Marylebone was renamed the Quintin Hogg in his honour. I tried to persuade young Quintin it would be great for him to go into the pub and try to cash a cheque – “Yes, my name’s Quintin Hogg – no, really, here’s my driving licence” – but he wouldn’t go for it.

  2. John Emerson says

    In his chapter on Hesiod, Bergk, whose vision of things Hellenic was very much widened, as every scholar’s must be, by close study of Greek lyric poetry, has some excellent remarks on Boeotia and the people of Boeotia, and recent writers have modified to some extent the old prejudice that has incorporated itself in the familiar classical phrases which always do duty whenever Boeotia is mentioned, such as ‘thick air,’ ‘land of wethers,’ ‘Boeotian swine,’ and the ‘ox-eared dwellers in Oxearshire.’ But no one that we can recall has p374gone into the matter with so much fulness as Mr. Roberts in his attractive little volume on ‘The Ancient Boeotians,’ which will do good service in rectifying crooked judgments on the northern neighbors of the Attic state. Mr. Roberts is a Welshman and professor in a Welsh college, and his book was put together at Saint Andrews, and somehow these conditions seem to fit the advocate of a lost cause.

  3. John Emerson says

    Renan, it may be remembered, solves the question why such exceptional geniuses arise in such unlooked-for localities on the simple ground that great men are the flowering of generations of dullards. Of himself he says: “Je suis l’aboutissement de longues files obscures de paysans et de marins. Je jouis de leurs économies de pensée ; je suis reconnaissant à ces pauvres gens qui m’ont procuré par leur sobriété intellectuelle de si vives jouissances . . . Une race donne sa fleur quand elle émerge de l’oubli. Les brillantes éclosions intellectuelles sortent d’un vaste fond d’inconscience, j’ai presque envie de dire, de vastes réservoirs d’ignorance.” As Renan to Brittany, so Pindar and Epaminondas to Boeotia

  4. A “progressive” move was to re-name polys as universities, thus desroying a separate and entirely honourable ethos. Now there is a push to make university education directly relevant to the world of work, thus trying to destroy the role of universities to replace what was lost when the polys were re-named and restructured. Sigh … just bring back polys.

  5. In the Feb. 17 edition of the Classical Journal, John A. Scott, in Homeric Heroes and Fish, surmises that the supposed Homer was a Smyrniot and that the ancient Smyrniots didn’t eat fish, which in his view explains why the Homeric heroes eschewed fish. As source of his reasoning he gives the fact that the freshwater fish of the Smyrniot region are inedible.
    Two thoughts to demolish his reasoning: One, if the supposed Homer were a Smyrniot he could have eaten saltwater fish bought on the quays, and two, although the Pelsgian indigenes of Mycenaean times were undoubtedly fisheaters, the Achaeans were boborygmous, flatulent, loudmouthed beefeaters.

  6. Richter’s article in the American Journal of Archaeology, Silk in Greece is quite illuminating. It would appear that silk was one of the riches of the Persian east that probably attracted Alexander and the Greeks and led them from Persia to Media and Bactria, which is to say along the Silk Road. Is anyone aware of modern authors that delve into the economics of the Alexandrian conquests?

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