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March 15 Is The Ides Of March—A Great Day To Learn About Rome And Caesar

Tomorrow, March 15, is the Ides of March.

Here is an explanation of what the term Ides of March means.

(Above–The Death of Caesar. This work was painted in 1798 by Vincenzo Camuccini.)

Here are two accessible book to learn about the events surrounding the fall of the Roman Republic and the rise of Julius Caesar.

Rubicon–The Last Years of the Roman Republic by Tom Holland.

A quality biography is Caesar–Life Of A Colossus by Adam Goldsworthy.

Though these events took place a long time ago, the impact of the rise of Caesar and the history of Rome is still recalled today.

Here is a comprehensive timeline of Ancient Roman history.

Here are some essays Ancient Rome from the BBC.

(Below—Whoopee! It is Cleopatra and Caesar as painted by Jean-Leon Gerome in 1866.)

March 14, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Ides Of March—Good Books And Resources To Learn About Julius Caesar And The History Of Ancient Rome

It is the Ides of March. You should beware.

Here is an explanation of what the Term Ides of March means.

(Above–The Death of Caesar. This work was painted in 1798 by Vincenzo Camuccini.)

What books can you read to learn about the events surrounding the rise of Julius Caesar and the fall of the Roman Republic?

I can suggest three.

A classic is The Roman Revolution by Sir Ronald Syme. This book was published in 1939 and has stood the test of time.

A more recent title is Rubicon–The Last Years of the Roman Republic by Tom Holland. This book was published in 2003.

Rubicon is a bit more modern in style and worthwhile to read. Though the Syme book remains the standard by which histories of the last years of the Roman Republic and the rise of Augustus are measured.

A quality biography is Caesar–Life Of A Colossus by Adam Goldsworthy.  This book was published in 2006.

Though these events may have been long in the past, the impact of the rise of Caesar and the history of Rome is still felt today.

Here is a comprehensive timeline of Ancient Roman history.

Here are some essays Ancient Rome from the BBC.

(Below—Whoopee! It is Cleopatra and Caesar as painted by Jean-Leon Gerome in 1866.)

March 15, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Barges & Pipes—Pictures And Thoughts

Image, Source: intermediary roll film

Above is a picture of a barge loaded with pipes. The barge is in the Houston Ship Channel back in 1939. The photo was taken by Russell Lee.

Here is information about Russell Lee. He took pictures for a New Deal agency and was later a professor of photography at the University of Texas.  

I like the picture because it looks like such a quiet scene. I used to enjoy seeing barges coming up the Ohio River whenever I was a few miles out of town from home in Cincinnati. Especially in the summer. While I’m not certain that life on a barge is really so nice, it just seemed so quiet to be moving up and down the river past the trees on the shore and past the small towns.  

Pipes are basic to transporting something from one place to another. (Though in the picture above it is the pipes themselves that are being transported.)  Pipes have been used for a long time. Below is a picture of lead pipes from ancient Rome. 

File:Lead pipe - Bath Roman Baths.jpg

Some parts of the world apparently worship pipes. Below is a statue of water pipes in Mytishchi, Russia.

File:Mytischi vodoprovod.jpg

Here is a video about pipelines from Rome to the current day from How Stuff  Works.

Barges are basic as well. Below is the Japanese painting Barges on the Yotsugi-dori Canal. I’d much rather be riding in the barge than pulling it along. This painting is one of 100 Views Of Edo by Ando Hiroshige.  These paintings were made between 1856 and 1858. Please click here to see all 100 views.

File:100 views edo 033.jpg

Here is a good video on barges from How Stuff Works.  

Below you see a picture of barges gone wild. Here is information about the so-called 1985 Election Day Flood on the Monongahela River in Pennsylvania. This was the flood that caused the barges below to go wild.

I think barges and pipes are interesting to consider. We often hear in life that the journey is as important as the destination. For the stuff we use in our lives, it is with barges and pipes that these things reach us.

May 9, 2009 Posted by | Art, History, Houston | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments