There is a huge, complicated literature on the question of whether Constantine I 'converted' to the Christian faith. Sometimes the simplest argument is the best. Joseph Vogt of Tübingen says in the 1960s: “I prefer to trust Julian the Apostate’s bitter reproach to his uncle of having deserted the sun god, Helios.” That's one line… Continue reading “I trust Julian the Apostate”
"The highest reward, for the souls of great philosophers, is to migrate into the bees and nightingales; they who have nourished the human race on their words, then charm it with the sweetness of their honey or the beauty of their song." - Ambrose of Milan, De bono mortis X 45 Cit. P. Courcelle,… Continue reading “The highest reward”
V. Bradley Lewis reviews my book Platonic Legislations: An Essay on Legal Critique in Ancient Greece (2017) in The Journal of Hellenic Studies (2019). He begins: "[Dusenbury's] argument can be briefly stated: law is a central object of Plato’s philosophical interest, so much so that he not only studies legislation, but engages in it, and this more than once (hence 'legislations'). But… Continue reading Platonic Legislations (2017) in the Journal of Hellenic Studies
I am delighted that my TLS essay on Sherlock Holmes & the rise of AI has been done into Turkish at Düşünbil Portal. Read “Data! Data! Data!” here. It begins: "Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’nin danışman dedektif Sherlock Holmes’ü okuyucuyla ilk kez buluşturduğu kitabı Kızıl Dosya’nın ilk sahnelerinde tekinsiz bir şeyler var. Yer, geç Viktorya dönemi Londra’sı. Conan Doyle: '…İmparatorluğun… Continue reading “Data! Data! Data!” in Turkish
David Mirhady reviews my book Platonic Legislations (2017) in Polis: The Journal for Ancient Greek and Roman Political Thought (2019). Mirhady begins: "This short book turns to the writings of Plato to meditate on issues of legal change (‘the flux of law’) in the post-Soviet era. It does not assume previous knowledge of Plato’s thought. It may then be best… Continue reading David Mirhady on Platonic Legislations (2017)
I will give a lecture on Nemesius of Emesa and late-antique cosmopolitanism at the XVIII. Oxford Patristics -- and I should mention that I am most grateful to the Association Internationale d’Études Patristiques for a designated grant. The conference will be held on 19-24 August 2019, hosted by the University of Oxford. Mandorla Mappa Mundi (Bodleian… Continue reading Ancient cosmopolitanism Oxford
I have an essay in this week's TLS on the Passion poems of George & Zbigniew Herbert. "In 1984, the Manhattan Review published a translation of Zbigniew Herbert’s poem, 'In the Margin of a Trial'. The trial in question was Jesus’s, and what Herbert sketched in its margin was a muted condemnation of the late-Soviet machinery of justice.… Continue reading “Unfortunate Galilean” in the TLS
His politics were abhorrent, but this is prescient: "The scholar disappears. He is succeeded by the research man who is engaged in research projects ... The research man no longer needs a library at home. Moreover, he is constantly on the move. He negotiates at meetings and collects information at congresses ... The research worker… Continue reading “The scholar disappears” – Heidegger
Cyprian of Carthage, Tyconius of Carthage, Augustine of Hippo ("the bread of Africa", panem Afer), and Pope Gelasius I ("African by birth", natione Afer): I am beginning to think that the strong distinction between sacred authority & secular power is a thoroughly African affair in the beginning ...
Epictetus, Discourses I 28.19: "Seek and you will find" (zetei kai heuresis). Jesus, Luke 11.9: "Seek and you will find" (zeteite kai heuresete). Note - as Thorsteinsson does not - that Jesus died roughly thirty years before Epictetus was born: R. M. Thorsteinsson, Jesus as Philosopher (Oxford, 2018), 159.