The Frontiers of Classicism

Taxila-Sirkap: Buddhist stupa of the double-headed eagle. Note the columns with the Corinthian capitals.

Taxila-Sirkap: Buddhist stupa of the double-headed eagle. Note the columns with the Corinthian capitals.

Next month, I’ll visit Uzbekistan. I have never been there, so I am currently busily preparing. Among the things I had to do was to get a permit to visit Kara Tepe, an archaeological site not far from Termez on the Afghan border. “Why on earth,” asked someone, “do you want to see those dead stones?”

“Because it’s there,” I quoted George Mallory, but of course that’s no real answer. The real answer is far more serious: “because I want to understand the classics”.

Now you may wonder if it’s not easier to read, say, Sophocles or Seneca. Isn’t it better to study the core of the classics? The least you can say for it is that it saves you an unpleasant night flight to Tashkent. The more I travel, the more I hate it.

[Read more on the blog of Ancient History Magazine.]

3 Responses to The Frontiers of Classicism

  1. Howard Davis says:

    Jona, you’ll love Termez. We went there last year. It’s a crossroads of history with some great archaelogical sites. Unfortunately, we didn’t get permission from the Government to visit Kara Tepe so I envy you for that. There is a great little archaelogical museum in Termez.

    I have a very good local Termez guide to recommend there if you don’t have one.

    However, one thing I definitely don’t envy is your Tashkent airport experience … !

    Best wishes, Howard

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