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The Mysterious Death of Alexander The Great (Part Two)

by on January 21, 2022

by Lydia Serrant, Contributing Writer, Classical Wisdom
Part One can be found HERE.
Alexander the Great was one of the greatest conquerors the world has ever known. Yet he died young, at the age of 32. What exactly caused his shocking, premature death? The main theories are below….
Disease

The Mysterious Death of Alexander The Great (Part One)

by on January 21, 2022

by Lydia Serrant, Contributing Writer, Classical Wisdom
Known for his great achievements throughout life, the death of Alexander the Great is just as famous as the man himself.
Considered as one of the greatest military generals the world had ever seen, Alexander the Great established a vast empire that reached from Egypt to India and the Middle East during his short 13-year rule as King of Macedonia.
But how did he die? Alexander’s demise has been the subject of debate for 2,000 years, with many probable causes having been put forward by professional and novice historians alike.

The Triad of Artemis-Selene-Hecate

by on January 21, 2022

by Ed Whelan, Contributing Writer, Classical Wisdom
Ancient religion was very dynamic and evolved over the centuries. One of the most interesting examples of this is the Triad of Artemis, or the Triple Goddess, wherein three goddesses were conflated or grouped together. These three goddesses were Artemis, Selene and Hecate.
The group is frequently known in modern times as the Artemis Triad.  But in Graeco-Roman civilization, the Triad was known by a variety of different names.  Artemis is one of the Olympian gods and was the patron deity of hunting, wildlife, virginity, and the Moon. She was revered as the protector of women and children and for her healing powers. She was a daughter of Zeus and was also known as the virgin goddess.
Selene (or Cynthia) was another lunar deity and was believed to embody the Moon.  She was the daughter of Titans, and her siblings included Helios, god of the sun and Eos, the dawn. Selene was thought to drive her silver chariot across the skies at night, which represented the moon. Her partner was Endymion with whom she had up to 50 daughters. She was often represented with horns, which are thought to represent the Moon in its waning crescent phase.

Should the Classics be used for Nationalism?

by on January 18, 2022

Today we will begin with an excellent query as posited by one of your fellow readers, Inês from Portugal: 
“Hello Classical Wisdom! Happy new year! 
I’m a huge fan of your work and all things of the classics.
I’ve been attending your webinars and I think that a great theme for discussion would be “The classics and Nationalism.”

Plato’s Allegory of the Cave

by on January 15, 2022

by Ed Whelan, Contributing Writer, Classical Wisdom
The influence of Plato on western philosophy has been immense; some of his key thoughts are encapsulated in the Allegory of the Cave. This presents some of his key philosophical ideas on the nature of truth, reality and even society. It is essential for understanding the Athenian thinker’s concepts which are still as relevant today as they were over two thousand years ago.
Plato’s Metaphysics
To understand Plato’s Allegory, it is first necessary to grasp some of his major ideas. In his masterpiece, the Republic, he outlines his theory of reality. He proposed that there are two worlds. There is the world of the senses that we know, which is always in flux, and unreliable. Then there was a second world; a timeless and unchanging world of eternal ideas or forms. What we call ‘truth’ is knowledge of these forms or ideas, which are the models for all that we perceive in the physical realm.  This world of Ideas is the ‘real’ world. According to Plato we can know the Forms by the practice of reasoning and philosophy.

The Cult of Asklepios

by on January 15, 2022

By Kevin Blood
It was a widespread cult of enormous importance in the ancient world. Socrates’ last words referenced its central figure. Their symbol is still recognizable today, worldwide – even if you don’t know what it is, you’ve likely seen it. But what exactly was the cult of Asklepios?
Established towards the end of the sixth century B.C. in the ancient Greek city of Epidauros, the cult worshipped the ancient Greek god of healing and medicine, Asklepios. The Temple of Asklepios at Epidauros flourished as a healing centre thanks to the careful management of its priests, and the cult’s temples and sanctuaries spread and went on to provide health services for the people of the Graeco-Roman world.
According to myth, Asklepios was the son of the god Apollo, and a mortal woman, Koronis. Apollo loved Koronis, yet her father, King Phlegyas, arranged her marriage to a mortal man. Jealous, Apollo killed the groom with an arrow. In turn, the goddess Artemis killed the pregnant Koronis in the same manner. Apollo saved Asklepios from his mother’s womb, and he was then fostered and tutored by the centaur Kheiron, who taught him the healing arts of medicine.