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25 August AD 117– The announcement of Hadrian’s accession in Alexandria (#Hadrian1900)

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Republication from  followinghadrian.com,

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One thousand nine hundred years ago on this day, only two weeks after Hadrian’s proclamation in Antioch, the new prefect of Egypt (Praefectus Aegypi), Quintus Rammius Martialis, addressed a circular letter to the strategoi of the Egyptian districts (nomes) announcing the imperial accession of Hadrian and instructing them to declare festivities for ten days.

The document, written in Greek, has been preserved on papyrus (POxy 55.3781). It comes from the Oxyrhynchus Papyri Collection which comprises the papyrus texts excavated by two young Oxford scholars, Bernard Grenfell and Arthur Hunt, in the rubbish dumps outside the Graeco-Egyptian town of Oxyrhynchus in central Egypt in the late 19th and early 20th century. The manuscripts, dating from the 3rd century BC to the 7th century AD, include texts with information about the daily life and the economic affairs of the town as well as a large collection of literary works in Greek and a few in Latin. They were then brought to England and deposited in Oxford. The Egypt Exploration Society owns more than 500,000 papyrus fragments from this site which are now housed in the Sackler Library in Oxford. It is the biggest hoard of classical manuscripts in the world. After more than 100 years since their discovery, the Oxyrhynchus Papyri continue to be reconstructed from fragments and translated at Oxford University.

 Location of Oxyrhynchos in Egypt.
By NordNordWest (Oxyrhynchos map.gif by Yomangani) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

 

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Remains of weapons, sandals and coins shed new light on Roman conquest of Northwest Iberia

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Republication from  www.exeter.ac.uk  (University of Exeter)

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Reenactment in Spain – Image Credit : Franciscojh -Wikimedia commons

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Newly discovered remains of weapons, hobnails from sandals and coins will help experts piece together the untold story of how the Romans won control of Galicia and Northern Portugal from local tribes for the first time.

Archaeologists have found the oldest evidence yet of the presence of legions in Galicia in the Penedo dos Lobos Roman camp (Manzaneda, Ourense, Galicia). This significant discovery will help to redefine the history of the period.

Until now historians had found few clues about the actions of Roman soldiers in these regions. The findings show some, smaller groups, of legionnaires were probably sent on scouting missions in the area to investigate the landscape, rather than to fight, suggesting the region was already under Roman control by the end of 1st century BC, when the bronze coins found were made.

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The rebuilding of Cyrene by Hadrian in AD 118/9 (#Hadrian1900)

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Republication from following Hadrian

 

Cyrene – Temple of Apollo

Apollo was the patron and foremost divinity of Cyrene, and the temple dedicated to him on the terrace beneath the sacred spring was one of the most important monuments of the ancient city.
© Mohamed Kenawi, Manar al-Athar Photo-Archive, Oxford 2013–, available at http://www.manar-al-athar.ox.ac.uk (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

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In AD 115, while Trajan and the majority of the Roman troops were campaigning in Parthia in the East, the diasporic Jews rose against Rome, creating havoc in Cyrenaica, Egypt and Cyprus. The hostilities started in Cyrene and quickly spread to Alexandria, Judaism’s largest city, and resulted not only in great loss of life but also in widespread destruction. In Cyrenaica, the revolt raged all over the country and was characterized by extreme violence and bloodshed. Dio Cassius paints a horrific picture of unrelieved brutality.

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Exploring Hadrian’s Athens

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Republication from Following hadrian

 

Hadrian was a dedicated philhellene who admired Greek culture and did his best to be accepted and admired by the Greeks. He visited Greece three times when he was emperor (AD 124/5, 128/9 and 131/2) and he was especially fond of Athens. Pausanias writes that “the Emperor Hadrian generosity to his subjects was bestowed most of all on Athens” whilst Cassius Dio tells about Hadrian’s generosity in a passage referring to his stay: “He granted the Athenians large sums of money, an annual dole of grain, and the whole of Cephallenia”. The philhellenic emperor did all he could to raise Athens to a special position in the Roman Empire and hoped to restore the city to the greatness of its distant past.

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Germanic lands according to Cl. Ptolemaeus (2nd cent. CE)

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A map of the Germanic lands according to Claudius Ptolemaeus (2nd cent. CE)

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Book Review: The Decline of Medieval Hellenism in Asia Minor and the Process of Islamization from the 11th through the 15th Century by S. Vryonis, University of California Press

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The loss of Asia Minor is often seen as the most decisive factor in the fall of the Byzantine Empire. Asia Minor was the territorial core of the empire during the Middle Byzantine Era. It was a wealthy and populous country of many millions of inhabitants, the main source of resources, raw materials, human resources, employees and soldiers for the Byzantine Empire. Its loss was, indeed, a major cause for the collapse of the Empire. However, this collapse was due to higher and wider political, social, economic, military, religious, ethnological and other negative parameters which in the first place led to the fall of Byzantine Asia Minor and then to the fall of the other imperial territories and eventually of the capital itself. More

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