At Pax Romana, numismatics is one our specialities – and passions! Coin collecting is a hobby that extends back to antiquity, originating with the Ancient Greek. Notable early enthusiasts include the emperor Augustus himself, amassing an extensive collection of coinage and developing a recorded habit of gifting old and exotic coins to friends and courtiers to mark special occasions. The main determinants of a … Read More Your Coin Collection: Where to Start
Think of an Egyptian mummy: what comes to mind? Layers of linen wrapping, a gilded sarcophagus? Now think again: who would be inside that ‘mummy’? You probably envisioned something along the lines of Tutankhamun’s sarcophagus (c.1323 BCE, Egyptian New Kingdom), replete with a gilded death mask and elaborate detailing. Likewise, you probably imagine the mummy as the province of the pharaoh – an exclusive … Read More Debunking the Mummy: the Truth about Egyptian Burial Customs
Jewellery was a staple of both classical Greek and Roman civilisation, both as a marker of political status and as an expression of social and economic capital. Luxury goods waxed and waned in popularity, responding to wider political circumstance and levels of affluence in the classical period. Consider, for example, Plato’s fervent warning in Republic (c. 380 BCE) of the weakness of the luxurious … Read More Our Guide to Classical Jewellery
Nestled in the foothills of the Hindo Kush mountains in North-West Pakistan, the ancient Gandhara civilization has a compelling artistic history. An important centre on the burgeoning Silk Road linking Europe with Central Asia and China, Gandhara’s prosperity made it a highly contentious territory. Following invasion by Alexander the Great (Alexander III of Macedonia) in 327 BC, Gandhara’s history was peppered with invasions by … Read More How did the Classical period influence Gandhara art?
Reading any piece of classical literature can be quite the undertaking – let alone when the classics you are interested in are thousands of years old. Want to know where to start? We’ve got you covered! Plato, Republic For the politico, Republic is a fantastic read. Considered by many to be Plato’s seminal dialogue, Republic is an exceedingly readable introduction to Platonic thought discussing … Read More Want to Read the Ancient Classics? Here’s where to start
Of all our Classical inheritances, perhaps the most enduring is the tradition of the Olympic games. In its modern recreation, the Olympics retain many aspects of the ancient games: the lighting of the Olympic flame, the valorisation of individual strength, and the enjoyment many spectators derive from watching. However, in ancient Greek culture, the Olympic games went far beyond a mere competition or form … Read More The Ideal Greek Athletic Body : Athletic Beauty in Ancient Greek Sculpture
When it comes to Ancient Greek helmets, there are seemingly countless types to learn about spanning across the many years of the classical period. That’s why we have produced our ultimate guide to the most influential Ancient Greek helmets, to help inform you of what might want to add to your collection next! Boar Tusk Helmet: The boar tusk helmet is one of the … Read More From the Corinthian to the Phyrgian Helmet – Our Greek Helmet Collection Guide
After the death of Alexander III of Macedon in 323 BC, his vast empire spanning from Greece to Bactria was carved up among the so-called Διάδοχοι (‘diadochoi’, translating to successors) through what are commonly referred to as the ‘Wars of the Diadochi’ (322–281 BC). At the end of these complex wars, spanning about fifty years, the three main dynasties that we encounter are the … Read More Coins and Power: Early Hellenistic Coin Portraiture from the Ptolemies to the Seleukids