Barbara Graziosi

Barbara Graziosi teaches at Durham.

In Her Philosopher’s Cloak: Hypatia

Barbara Graziosi, 17 August 2017

‘On a​ fatal day, in the holy season of Lent, Hypatia was torn from her chariot, stripped naked, dragged to the church, and inhumanly butchered by the hands of Peter the reader, and a troop of savage and merciless fanatics: her flesh was scraped from her bones with sharp oyster shells, and her quivering limbs were delivered to the flames.’ This is Gibbon’s description of...

Zeus delivers​ the first speech in Homer’s Odyssey, and it soon transpires that he is in a petulant mood. ‘This is horrible!’ he thunders. ‘See how mortals blame us, the gods! They say that all bad things come from us, but it is through their own foolishness that people suffer beyond their portion.’ It isn’t immediately clear why Zeus sounds so...

Diary: Sebald is my husband

Barbara Graziosi, 20 December 2012

Last Christmas I bought for the husband Shostakovich’s Preludes and Fugues played by Nikolayeva and a night for two in the Lake District. Both were safe choices. Johannes had been playing Nikolayeva on YouTube for some weeks, and the Lake District is Alpine enough for Johannes to feel at home, yet close enough to our actual home (Durham) to make it viable. Then I thought I’d take...

Where’s the Gravy? Homeric Travel

Barbara Graziosi, 27 August 2009

Homeric poetry is vivid and precise. We can smell the dust, hear the din of battle and follow the tip of a spear as it inflicts a wound ‘between the neck and the collarbone’. Even the gods – those obsolete pagan idols – seem familiar. Apollo kicks down the Achaean wall

like a child who piles sand by the seashore and makes a tower to amuse himself in his innocence and...

Flower or Fungus? Bacchylides

Barbara Graziosi, 31 July 2008

In the early fifth century BCE, Bacchylides’ career was at its height: his services as poet, composer, choreographer and impresario were in demand throughout the Greek world. He delivered theatrical spectacles on commission, composing songs for a wide range of occasions, training choruses to sing and dance to them, and organising their musical accompaniment. His clients asked him to...

Big in Ephesus: The Olympians

James Davidson, 4 December 2014

When​ I imagine the Greek gods on Olympus I conjure up a lofty polished marble palace with colonnades and porticos open to the air, its Ionic and Corinthian capitals picked out in gold, rather...

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