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The Ottoman Parthenon

The Parthenon was born as a flawless temple; it matured as a dazzling church; and it perished as a ravishing mosque, whose beauty was considered the work of preternatural agency…or perhaps Plato himself.


Athens in the time of cholera

Ioannis Benizelos spent many sleepless nights pacing up and down the hayat of his mansion in 1789. There was a rumor that the plague had returned to Athens. Benizelos knew the disease’s symptoms and terrible consequences, but he had no answer to the most pertinent question: should he panic?

The best art gallery of Athens

What pastime could engage the resourceful mind of a learned, refined, literate, ambitious, and stylish individual? The erection of the greatest art gallery in Athens. The only problem? Whoever this person was, they forgot to leave us their name.

The parrots of Athens

If Greeks had been told, not long ago, that their skies would become the haven of ring-necked and monk parakeets, the response would have been one of incredulity.

Ancient Greek drinking games

The ancient Greek symposium was primarily a drinking party. Kings and heroes had often enjoyed each other’s company over a few cups of wine during the time of Homer (8th century BCE) but it was only in the 600s BCE that the symposium acquired the form and context we now consider typical.

The art of the ancient Greek penis

The quest for youth and beauty is as old as time, and the ancient Greeks had a few things to say on the matter. In the Clouds, Aristophanes has the young Pheidippides visit the school of Socrates in search of an education that will enable him to maintain his extravagant lifestyle

Ancient Greek pet names

Animals were essential to the ancient Greeks. On a practical level, they were crucial to farm work and food production; they served their masters at war or carried them from place to place.

Walking dead

Ancient Greek parents had the right to expose a newborn child. Poor families with too many children, parents who only wanted sons, or girls who had been raped may not have been inclined to raise the child.