One of the blogs that have popped up recently is that of the Ancient Blogger, a bloke from UK that writes about Greek and Roman mythology. He doesn’t just write, it seems there’s a wealth of pictures and videos and he shows us everything with a touch of humour.
This is him telling us about the aspis, a hoplite shield. Don’t know what that is? Well, click the video then, duh.
And since at the time of posting this, Valentine’s Day is dangerously imminent, I’d like to point you to a specific blog post about Unrequited Love in Ancient Greece.
It all starts with, and on, the island of Lefkada which sits in the Ionian Sea (west of mainland Greece). It’s here where you’ll find a particularly vertigo-inducing white rock which gave the island its old name, Leucas. Apollo had a temple here and if you know your Greek love gossip then you know Apollo is never far from a tragic date.
When Aphrodite was grieving for Adonis it was suggested to her by Apollo that she jump off the white rock to cure her feelings. Whether this was sage advice or the sort of thing which siblings do to each other is unclear but as Aphrodite emerged from the sea she was indeed cured.
The famous Sappho apparently jumped from here to cure herself of love, but died, which isn’t exactly surprising. Strabo contends that the first mortal to attempt the feat wasn’t Sappho (as is sometimes stated) but Cephalus who had fallen for Pteralas (10.2.9). Whether Cephalus survived isn’t known but we do have a list of those who attempted and (mostly) failed thanks to a Greek grammarian called Conon who lived around the time of Augustus.