Author: Rachel Mairs
Category: Excavations (Archaeology)
Revision of: Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Cambridge, 2006.
Archaeology, Language, and Identity in Greek Central Asia
Author: Rachel Mairs
Publisher: Univ of California Press
In the aftermath of Alexander the Great’s conquests in the late fourth century B.C., Greek garrisons and settlements were established across Central Asia, through Bactria (modern-day Afghanistan) and into India. Over the next three hundred years, these settlements evolved into multiethnic, multilingual communities as much Greek as they were indigenous. To explore the lives and identities of the inhabitants of the Graeco-Bactrian and Indo-Greek kingdoms, Rachel Mairs marshals a variety of evidence, from archaeology, to coins, to documentary and historical texts. Looking particularly at the great city of Ai Khanoum, the only extensively excavated Hellenistic period urban site in Central Asia, Mairs explores how these ancient people lived, communicated, and understood themselves. Significant and original, The Hellenistic Far East will highlight Bactrian studies as an important part of our understanding of the ancient world.
From Small States to Universalism in the Pre-Islamic Near East
Author: Mark Altaweel,Andrea Squitieri
Publisher: UCL Press
This book investigates the long-term continuity of large-scale states and empires, and its effect on the Near East’s social fabric, including the fundamental changes that occurred to major social institutions. Its geographical coverage spans, from east to west, modern-day Libya and Egypt to Central Asia, and from north to south, Anatolia to southern Arabia, incorporating modern-day Oman and Yemen. Its temporal coverage spans from the late eighth century BCE to the seventh century CE during the rise of Islam and collapse of the Sasanian Empire. The authors argue that the persistence of large states and empires starting in the eighth/seventh centuries BCE, which continued for many centuries, led to new socio-political structures and institutions emerging in the Near East. The primary processes that enabled this emergence were large-scale and long-distance movements, or population migrations. These patterns of social developments are analysed under different aspects: settlement patterns, urban structure, material culture, trade, governance, language spread and religion, all pointing at movement as the main catalyst for social change. This book’s argument is framed within a larger theoretical framework termed as ‘universalism’, a theory that explains many of the social transformations that happened to societies in the Near East, starting from the Neo-Assyrian period and continuing for centuries. Among other influences, the effects of these transformations are today manifested in modern languages, concepts of government, universal religions and monetized and globalized economies.
Author: Sigfried J. de Laet,Ahmad Hasan Dani
The second volume covers the first two and a half thousand years of recorded history, from the start of the Bronze Age 5,000 years ago to the beginnings of the Iron Age. Written by a team of over sixty specialists, this volume includes a comprehensive bibliography and a detailed index.
Contact and Exchange between the Graeco-Roman World, Inner Asia and China
Author: Hyun Jin Kim,Frederik Juliaan Vervaet,Selim Ferruh Adali
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
The great empires of the vast Eurasian continent have captured the imagination of many. Awe-inspiring names such as ancient Rome, Han and Tang China, Persia, Assyria, the Huns, the Kushans and the Franks have been the subject of countless scholarly books and works of literature. However, very rarely, if at all, have these vast pre-industrial empires been studied holistically from a comparative, interdisciplinary and above all Eurasian perspective. This collection of studies examines the history, literature and archaeology of these empires and others thus far treated separately as a single inter-connected subject of inquiry. It highlights in particular the critical role of Inner Asian empires and peoples in facilitating contacts and exchange across the Eurasian continent in antiquity and the early Middle Ages.
Collectors and Collections, 100 BCE – 100 CE
Author: Alexandra Bounia
The phenomenon of collecting as a systematic activity undertaken for symbolic rather than actual needs, is traditionally taken to originate in the middle of the fifteenth century, when the first cabinets of curiosities appear in Italy. Yet it is clear that the practice of collecting started long before that, indeed its origins can be traced back thousands of years to European prehistoric communities. Whilst this early genesis is, due to lack of written records, still shrouded in much mystery, The Nature of Classical Collecting argues that the collecting practices of classical Greece and Rome offer a rich tapestry of experiences which can be reconstructed to illuminate a pivotal period in the long and ever developing phenomenon of collecting. Utilizing a wide variety of examples of classical collections - including grave goods, the accumulations of Greek temples and open-air shrines, the royal collections of Hellenistic kings, Roman art and curiosity collections, and relics - The Nature of Classical Collecting focuses on the field of the 'pre-history' of collecting, a neglected yet critical phase that helped crystallize the western concept of collecting. Drawing primarily on Latin writings from the period 100 BCE to 100 CE it shows how collecting underwent a transition from a religious and political activity, to an intellectual practice in which connoisseurship could impart social status. It also demonstrates how the appreciation of objects and artists changed as new qualities were attributed to material culture, resulting in the establishment of art markets, patronage and an interest in the history of art. By exploring these early developments, The Nature of Classical Collecting not only provides a fascinating insight into the culture of late Hellenistic/early Imperial Roman collecting, but also offers a much fuller grounding for understanding the influences and inspirations of those Renaissance collectors who themselves were to have such a profound influence on the course of European art, architecture and culture.
Author: A. J. S. Spawforth
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Category: Social Science
Monarchy was widespread as a political system in the ancient world. This volume offers a substantial discussion of ancient monarchies from the viewpoint of the ruler's court. The monarchies treated are Achaemenid and Sassanian Persia, the empire of Alexander, Rome under both the early and later Caesars, the Han rulers of China and Egypt's Eighteenth Dynasty. A comparative approach is adopted to major aspects of ancient courts, including their organisation and physical setting, their role as a vehicle for display, and their place in monarchial structures of power and control. This approach is broadly inspired by work on courts in later periods of history, especially early-modern France. The case studies confirm that ancient monarchies created the conditions for the emergence of a court and court society. The culturally specific conditions in which these monarchies functioned meant variety in the character of the ruler's court from one society to another.
A History of the Language and its Speakers
Author: Geoffrey Horrocks
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
Category: Language Arts & Disciplines
Greek: A History of the Language and its Speakers, Second Edition reveals the trajectory of the Greek language from the Mycenaean period of the second millennium BC to the current day. • Offers a complete linguistic treatment of the history of the Greek language • Updated second edition features increased coverage of the ancient evidence, as well as the roots and development of diglossia • Includes maps that clearly illustrate the distribution of ancient dialects and the geographical spread of Greek in the early Middle Ages
From Prehistory to the Present
Author: Richard Foltz
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Although today associated exclusively with Islam, Iran has in fact played an unparalleled role within all the world religions, injecting Iranian ideas into the Jewish, Buddhist, Christian, and Manichaean traditions of the merchants who passed along the Silk Road. This vivid and surprising work explores the manner in which Persian culture has interacted with and transformed each world faith, from the migration of the Israelites to Iran thousands of years ago to the influence of Iranian notions on Mahayana Buddhism and Christianity. Foltz considers Iran’s role in shaping the Muslim world, not only in the Middle East but also in South Asia in an evocative and informative journey through the spiritual heritage of an ancient and influential region.
From the Bronze Age to the Coming of Islam
Author: Robert G. Hoyland
Long before Muhammed preached the religion of Islam, the inhabitants of his native Arabia had played an important role in world history as both merchants and warriors Arabia and the Arabs provides the only up-to-date, one-volume survey of the region and its peoples, from prehistory to the coming of Islam Using a wide range of sources - inscriptions, poetry, histories, and archaeological evidence - Robert Hoyland explores the main cultural areas of Arabia, from ancient Sheba in the south, to the deserts and oases of the north. He then examines the major themes of *the economy *society *religion *art, architecture and artefacts *language and literature *Arabhood and Arabisation The volume is illustrated with more than 50 photographs, drawings and maps.
Archaeology in the Construction, Commemoration, and Consecration of National Pasts
Author: Philip L. Kohl,Mara Kozelsky,Nachman Ben-Yehuda
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Category: Social Science
When political geography changes, how do reorganized or newly formed states justify their rule and create a sense of shared history for their people? Often, the essays in Selective Remembrances reveal, they turn to archaeology, employing the field and its findings to develop nationalistic feelings and forge legitimate distinctive national identities. Examining such relatively new or reconfigured nation-states as Iran, Iraq, Turkey, Israel, Russia, Ukraine, India, and Thailand, Selective Remembrances shows how states invoke the remote past to extol the glories of specific peoples or prove claims to ancestral homelands. Religion has long played a key role in such efforts, and the contributors take care to demonstrate the tendency of many people, including archaeologists themselves, to view the world through a religious lens—which can be exploited by new regimes to suppress objective study of the past and justify contemporary political actions. The wide geographic and intellectual range of the essays in Selective Remembrances will make it a seminal text for archaeologists and historians.
Institutions of Art in Colonial and Postcolonial India
Author: Tapati Guha-Thakurta
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Art history as it is largely practiced in Asia as well as in the West is a western invention. In India, works of art-sculptures, monuments, paintings-were first viewed under colonial rule as archaeological antiquities, later as architectural relics, and by the mid-20th century as works of art within an elaborate art-historical classification. Tied to these views were narratives in which the works figured, respectively, as sources from which to recover India's history, markers of a lost, antique civilization, and symbols of a nation's unique aesthetic, reflecting the progression from colonialism to nationalism. The nationalist canon continues to dominate the image of Indian art in India and abroad, and yet its uncritical acceptance of the discipline's western orthodoxies remains unquestioned, the original motives and means of creation unexplored. The book examines the role of art and art history from both an insider and outsider point of view, always revealing how the demands of nationalism have shaped the concept and meaning of art in India. The author shows how western custodianship of Indian "antiquities" structured a historical interpretation of art; how indigenous Bengali scholarship in the late 19th and early 20th centuries attempted to bring Indian art into the nationalist sphere; how the importance of art as a representation of national culture crystallized in the period after Independence; and how cultural and religious clashes in modern India have resulted in conflicting "histories" and interpretations of Indian art. In particular, the author uses the depiction of Hindu goddesses to elicit conflicting scenarios of condemnation and celebration, both of which have at their core the threat and lure of the female form, which has been constructed and narrativized in art history.
Author: Romila Thapar
Publisher: Orient Blackswan
A collection of papers that interprets afresh, known facts about the early period of Indian history up to the end of the first millennium AD. The papers discuss several associated themes such as society and religion, social classification and mobility and the study of regional history. A useful reference book for postgraduate students of History.