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Recent Completions

Daniel Mitchell (Essay)

A Reassessment of the Roman Figure in the Central Scene of Augustus of Prima Porta Cuirass.

Since its discovery in 1863 there has been a great deal of scholarly debate concerning the Roman figure in the central scene of the Augustus of Prima Porta’s cuirass. Some have identified the figure as an abstract character, others as a specific deity or historical figure. Most past scholarship has avoided a detailed assessment of the Roman figure, including its physical features, its uniform, the object under its upper left arm, and the canine at its feet. Collectively, these features indicate Tiberius is the Roman figure. Historically, he was the recipient of the standards from Parthia and the commander of Roman forces in neighbouring Armenia. As the first successor to the emperorship, no opportunity could be lost for reminding citizens, even in the private sphere, that Tiberius, who personally secured the standards and peace, earned his place as the head of the Roman state.

Miranda Siklenka (Thesis)

Apulian Warrior-Heroes and Greek Citizens: Mortuary Constructions of Identity in Ruvo di Puglia and Metaponto.   (QSpace)

The purpose of this thesis is to shed light on the socio-political ideology of the warrior- aristocracy of Ruvo di Puglia and the inhabitants of the Greek polis of Metaponto through observation of the motifs on the figured vessels placed in wealthy tombs. By examining the mortuary deposits of the Ruvo tombs alongside those from Metaponto, we will be able to see some similarities between the two cities. While these similarities imply a level of cultural sharing, they more succinctly show that the indigenous inhabitants of Ruvo were quite selective in borrowing from the Greeks. However, the differences provide the best insight into the fascinating practices of the Apulians. I show that the Apulian chieftains coveted a warrior-hero status and were not hesitant to liken themselves to the legendary Achilles or Herakles, while the Greeks saw such practices as a breach of the fundamental principles of their polis-centered egalitarianism. This is significant for the understanding of the cultural environment of Magna Graecia since only little remains in terms of primary sources on the subject.

Julianna Will (Thesis)

Euripides' 'Antiope' and the Theban Trilogy.   (QSpace)

This thesis is a discussion, reconstruction, and analysis of Euripides’ lost Antiope. Based on metrical studies which suggest a date much earlier than its usual date of  410 or 408 B.C., I specifically focus on the possibility that Antiope might be part of a larger Theban trilogy,  produced together with Suppliant Women and one other play. I begin with a thorough look at the mythological material existing before Euripides’ version of the story, as well as the tragedy’s effect on later versions. From there I provide a translation of the existing fragments arranged in the order I believe they were written for the tragedy, and a reconstruction with discussion. The latter half of the thesis I devote to reading Antiope as part of a trilogy. I compare the similarities between the proposed Theban trilogy with the more firmly established Trojan trilogy, and I provide a discussion on Antiope and Suppliant Women, commenting on how reading the two plays together can drastically change an analysis of either. I conclude that even if Euripides did not have “trilogy” in mind when he wrote Antiope and Suppliant Women, the connection between the two tragedies is both too important and too subtle for them to have been produced in separate years and still have been appreciated by an ancient audience.

Laurent Boivin (Essay)

Gravitas in the Desert: An Analysis of Selected Letters of Isidore of Pelusium and his Influence on the Secular and Ecclesiastical Affairs of the Fifth Century CE.   (QSpace)

With the 2,000 letters that have come down to us under his name, Isidore of Pelusium has long been considered an important Church father not only for the quality of his doctrinal exegesis, but also for the meticulous craftsmanship of his writing.  Isidore is also known for the myriad of subjects on which he could write, including rhetoric, philosophy, and even science.  However, one aspect of Isidore’s output that needs further study is his correspondence with powerful secular and ecclesiastical officials of the first half of the fifth century CE.  This paper therefore argues that besides being a Church father of note, Isidore was also a very well-connected holy man during the time of the First Council of Ephesus of 431 CE. 

Clare Barker (Essay)

A Guide to the University of Toronto's Classics Department Papyrus Collection at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library

Tori Bedingfield  (Thesis)

Black Gloss Ceramics from Cerveteri: The Vigna Marini Project 2012 (QSpace)

The purpose of this thesis is threefold: to catalogue the black gloss ceramics excavated by the Vigna Marini project in Cerveteri in 2012; to understand the relationship between Rome and Caere in terms of ceramic production, especially in the third century BCE; and to highlight the importance of archaeometric analysis in ceramic studies. Using a firmly established typology of black gloss ceramics, a qualitative analysis of the ceramics of this type recovered in Cerveteri, and archaeometric studies, I show that black gloss production remained relatively stable in Caere during Rome’s expansion into Italy. This is significant for the understanding of Caere’s economy during this period: it has been commonly held that Caere suffered an economic crisis in the third century BCE, but this thesis strongly argues for economic stability.

Alison Cummings (Essay)

An Intercultural Reading of Euripedes' Medea 219-21  (QSpace)

Lines 219-21 near the start of Medea's first speech of Euripides Medea are intriguing from an intercultural perspective. This paper considers the meaning of these lines alongside Milton Bennett's modern theory of intercultural development - the Developmental Model of Intercultural Sensitivity (DMIS). By applying the DMIS to these lines, as well as to other Greek of the classical period, the paper explores the ancient Greeks' attitudes toward cultural difference.