Lesbos is an island located in the northeastern Aegean Sea. It has an area of 1,633 km2 with 320 kilometres of coastline, making it the third largest island in Greece, it is separated from Turkey by the narrow Mytilini Strait and in late Palaeolithic/Mesolithic times was joined to the Anatolian mainland before the end of the last glacial period. Lesbos is the name of a regional unit of the North Aegean region, within which Lesbos island is one of five governing islands; the others are Chios, Ikaria and Samos. The North Aegean region governs nine inhabited islands: Lesbos, Psara, Ikaria, Fournoi Korseon, Agios Efstratios and Samos; the capital of the North Aegean Region is Mytilene. The population of Lesbos is 86,000, a third of whom live in its capital, Mytilene, in the southeastern part of the island; the remaining population is distributed in small villages. The largest are Plomari, the Gera Villages, Agiassos and Molyvos. According to Greek writers, Mytilene was founded in the 11th century BC by the family Penthilidae, who arrived from Thessaly and ruled the city-state until a popular revolt led by Pittacus of Mytilene ended their rule.
In fact the archaeological and linguistic record may indicate a late Iron Age arrival of Greek settlers although references in Late Bronze Age Hittite archives indicate a Greek presence then. The name Mytilene. According to Homer's Iliad, Lesbos was part of the kingdom of Priam, based in Anatolia. Much work remains to be done to determine just when. In the Middle Ages, it was under Byzantine and Genoese rule. Lesbos was conquered by the Ottoman Empire in 1462; the Ottomans ruled the island until the First Balkan War in 1912, when it became part of the Kingdom of Greece. The name is from Ancient Greek: Λέσβος Lésbos "forested" or "woody" a Hittite borrowing, as the original Hittite name for the island was Lazpa. An older name for the island, maintained in Aeolic Greek was Ἴσσα Íssa. Lesbos lies in the far east of the Aegean sea, facing the Turkish coast from the east; the shape of the island is triangular, but it is intruded by the gulfs of Kalloni, with an entry on the southern coast, of Gera, in the southeast.
The island is forested and mountainous with two large peaks, Mt. Lepetymnos at 968 m and Mt. Olympus at 967 m, dominating its northern and central sections; the island's volcanic origin is manifested in the two gulfs. Lesbos is verdant, aptly named Emerald Island, with a greater variety of flora than expected for the island's size. Eleven million olive trees cover 40% of the island together with other fruit trees. Forests of mediterranean pines, chestnut trees and some oaks occupy 20%, the remainder is scrub, grassland or urban; the island has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate. The mean annual temperature is 18 °C, the mean annual rainfall is 750 mm, its exceptional sunshine makes it one of the sunniest islands in the Aegean Sea. Snow and low temperatures are rare; the entire territory of Lesbos is "Lesvos Geopark", a member of the European Geoparks Network and Global Geoparks Network on account of its outstanding geological heritage, educational programs and projects, promotion of geotourism.
This geopark was enlarged from former "Lesvos Petrified Forest Geopark". Lesbos contains one of the few known petrified forests called Petrified forest of Lesbos and it has been declared a Protected Natural Monument. Fossilised plants have been found in many localities on the western part of the island; the fossilised forest was formed during the Late Oligocene to Lower–Middle Miocene, by the intense volcanic activity in the area. Neogene volcanic rocks dominate the central and western part of the island, comprising andesites and rhyolites, pyroclastics and volcanic ash; the products of the volcanic activity covered the vegetation of the area and the fossilization process took place during favourable conditions. The fossilized plants are silicified remnants of a sub-tropical forest that existed on the north-west part of the island 20–15 million years ago. According to Classical Greek mythology, Lesbos was the patron god of the island. Macareus of Rhodes was reputedly the first king whose many daughters bequeathed their names to some of the present larger towns.
In Classical myth his sister, was killed to have him made king. The place names with female origins are claimed by some to be much earlier settlements named after local goddesses, who were replaced by gods. Homer refers to the seat of Macar. Hittite records from the Late Bronze Age name the island Lazpa and must have considered its population significant enough to allow the Hittites to "borrow their gods" to cure their king when the local gods were not forthcoming, it is believed that emigrants from mainland Greece from Thessaly, entered the island in the Late Bronze Age and bequeathed it with the Aeolic dialect of the Greek language, whose written form survives in the poems of Sappho, amongst others. The abundant grey pottery ware found on the island and the worship of Cybele, the great mother-goddess of Anatolia, suggest the cultural continuity of the population from Neolithic times; when the Persian king Cyrus defeated Croesus the Ionic Greek cities of An
Virtual International Authority File
The Virtual International Authority File is an international authority file. It is a joint project of several national libraries and operated by the Online Computer Library Center. Discussion about having a common international authority started in the late 1990s. After a series of failed attempts to come up with a unique common authority file, the new idea was to link existing national authorities; this would present all the benefits of a common file without requiring a large investment of time and expense in the process. The project was initiated by the US Library of Congress, the German National Library and the OCLC on August 6, 2003; the Bibliothèque nationale de France joined the project on October 5, 2007. The project transitioned to being a service of the OCLC on April 4, 2012; the aim is to link the national authority files to a single virtual authority file. In this file, identical records from the different data sets are linked together. A VIAF record receives a standard data number, contains the primary "see" and "see also" records from the original records, refers to the original authority records.
The data are available for research and data exchange and sharing. Reciprocal updating uses the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting protocol; the file numbers are being added to Wikipedia biographical articles and are incorporated into Wikidata. VIAF's clustering algorithm is run every month; as more data are added from participating libraries, clusters of authority records may coalesce or split, leading to some fluctuation in the VIAF identifier of certain authority records. Authority control Faceted Application of Subject Terminology Integrated Authority File International Standard Authority Data Number International Standard Name Identifier Wikipedia's authority control template for articles Official website VIAF at OCLC
Battle of Pharsalus
The Battle of Pharsalus was the decisive battle of Caesar's Civil War. On 9 August 48 BC at Pharsalus in central Greece, Gaius Julius Caesar and his allies formed up opposite the army of the republic under the command of Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus. Pompey had the backing of a majority of the senators, of whom many were optimates, his army outnumbered the veteran Caesarian legions; the two armies confronted each other over several months of uncertainty, Caesar being in a much weaker position than Pompey. The former found himself isolated in a hostile country with only 22,000 men and short of provisions, while on the other side of the river he was faced by Pompey with an army about twice as large in number. Pompey wanted to delay, knowing the enemy would surrender from hunger and exhaustion. Pressured by the senators present and by his officers, he reluctantly engaged in battle and suffered an overwhelming defeat fleeing the camp and his men, disguised as an ordinary citizen. A dispute between Caesar and the optimates faction in the Senate of Rome culminated in Caesar marching his army on Rome and forcing Pompey, accompanied by much of the Roman Senate, to flee in 49 BC from Italy to Greece, where he could better conscript an army to face his former ally.
Caesar, lacking a fleet to give chase, solidified his control over the western Mediterranean – Spain – before assembling ships to follow Pompey. Marcus Calpurnius Bibulus, whom Pompey had appointed to command his 600-ship fleet, set up a massive blockade to prevent Caesar from crossing to Greece and to prevent any aid to Italy. Caesar, defying convention, chose to cross the Adriatic during the winter, with only half his fleet at a time; as Pontifex Maximus, Caesar was responsible for adjusting the Roman calendar at the end of each year to align it with the rotation of the Earth around the sun. As Caesar had been in Gaul and occupied by the civil war for years, he had not been able to make this yearly change and over time, the difference between the Earth's rotation and the calendar that Rome operated on had grown to such an extent that Bibulus, along with the others who had fled to Greece, believed that it was months than when Caesar knew it was; as such, this move surprised Bibulus, who believed it was winter, the first wave of ships managed to run the blockade easily.
Now prepared, Bibulus died soon afterwards. Caesar was now in a precarious position, holding a beachhead at Epirus with only half his army, no ability to supply his troops by sea, limited local support, as the Greek cities were loyal to Pompey. Caesar's only choice was to fortify his position, forage what supplies he could, wait on his remaining army to attempt another crossing. Pompey by now had a massive international army. Realizing Caesar's difficulty in keeping his troops supplied, Pompey decided to mirror Caesar's forces and let hunger do the fighting for him. Caesar used every channel he could think of to pursue peace with Pompey; when this was rebuffed he made an attempt to cross back to Italy to collect his missing troops, but was turned back by a storm. Mark Antony rallied the remaining forces in Italy, fought through the blockade and made the crossing, reinforcing Caesar's forces in both men and spirit. Now at full strength, Caesar felt confident to take the fight to Pompey. Pompey was camped in a strong position just south of Dyrrhachium with the sea to his back and surrounded by hills, making a direct assault impossible.
Caesar ordered a wall to be built around Pompey's position in order to cut off water and pasture land for his horses. Pompey built a parallel wall and in between a kind of no man's land was created, with fighting comparable to the trench warfare of World War I; the standoff was broken when a traitor in Caesar's army informed Pompey of a weakness in Caesar's wall. Pompey exploited this information and forced Caesar's army into a full retreat, but ordered his army not to pursue, fearing Caesar's reputation for setting elaborate traps; this caused Caesar to remark, "Today the victory had been the enemy's, had there been any one among them to gain it." Pompey continued his strategy of avoiding any direct engagements. After trapping Caesar in Thessaly, the prominent senators in Pompey's camp began to argue loudly for a more decisive victory. Although Pompey was against it — he wanted to surround and starve Caesar's army instead — he gave in and accepted battle from Caesar on a field near Pharsalus.
Excerpt from Cassius Dio's "Roman History" gives a more ancient flavor of his take on the prelude to the "Battle of Pharsalus": "As a result of these circumstances and of the cause and purpose of the war a most notable struggle took place. For the city of Rome and its entire empire then great and mighty, lay before them as the prize, since it was clear to all that it would be the slave of him who conquered; when they reflected on this fact and furthermore thought of their former deeds they were wrought up to the highest pitch of excitement....they now, led by their insatiable lust of power, hastened to break and rend asunder. Because of them Rome was being compelled to fight both in her own defense and against herself, so that if victorious she would be vanquished." The date of the actual decisive battle is given as 9 August 48 BC according to the republican calendar. According to the Julian calendar however, the date was either 29 June or 7 June (according to Drumann/G
Political career of Cicero
The political career of Marcus Tullius Cicero began in 76 BC with his election to the office of quaestor, ended in 43 BC, when he was assassinated upon the orders of Mark Antony. Cicero, a Roman statesman, political theorist and Roman constitutionalist, reached the height of Roman power, the Consulship, played a critical role in the transformation of the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire. A contemporary of Julius Caesar, Cicero is considered one of Rome's greatest orators and prose stylists. Cicero is perceived to be one of the most versatile minds of ancient Rome, he introduced the Romans to the chief schools of Greek philosophy and created a Latin philosophical vocabulary, distinguishing himself as a linguist and philosopher. An impressive orator and successful lawyer, Cicero thought his political career his most important achievement. Today, he is appreciated for his humanism and philosophical and political writings, his voluminous correspondence, much of it addressed to his friend Atticus, has been influential, introducing the art of refined letter writing to European culture.
Cornelius Nepos, the 1st-century BC biographer of Atticus, remarked that Cicero's letters to Atticus contained such a wealth of detail "concerning the inclinations of leading men, the faults of the generals, the revolutions in the government" that their reader had little need for a history of the period. During the chaotic latter half of the first century BC, marked by civil wars and the dictatorship of Gaius Julius Caesar, Cicero championed a return to the traditional republican government. However, his career as a statesman was marked by inconsistencies and a tendency to shift his position in response to changes in the political climate, his indecision may be attributed to his impressionable personality. "Would that he had been able to endure prosperity with greater self-control and adversity with more fortitude!" wrote C. Asinius Pollio, a contemporary Roman statesman and historian. Cicero's childhood dream was "Always to be best and far to excel the others," a line taken from Homer's Iliad.
Cicero pursued dignitas and auctoritas, symbolized by the purple-bordered toga praetexta and the Roman lictors' rod. There was just one path to these: public civil service along the steps of Cursus honorum. However, in 90 BC he was too young to apply to any of the offices of Cursus honorum except to acquire the preliminary experience in warfare that a career in civil service demanded. In 90–88 BC, Cicero served both Gnaeus Pompeius Strabo and Lucius Cornelius Sulla as they campaigned in the Social War, though he had no taste for military life. Cicero was foremost an intellectual. Several years he would write to his friend, Titus Pomponius Atticus, collecting marble statues for Cicero's villas: "Why do you send me a statue of Mars? You know I am a pacifist!"Cicero started his career as a lawyer around 83–81 BC. The earliest known case is the pro Quinctio, a private dispute from 81 BC delivered when Cicero was 26. However, the first major public case of which a written record is still existent was his 80 BC defense of Sextus Roscius on the charge of parricide.
Taking this case was a courageous move for Cicero. At this time it would have been easy for Sulla to have Cicero murdered, as Cicero was known in the Roman courts, his arguments were divided into three parts: in the first, he defended Roscius and attempted to prove he did not commit the murder. On the strength of this case, Roscius was acquitted. Cicero's successful defense was an indirect challenge to the dictator Sulla, whom he again challenged in a lost speech defending the disenfranchised citizens of Arretium. According to Plutarch, Cicero was so fearful of Sulla's anger after Roscius' acquittal that he left for Greece, Asia Minor and Rhodes in 79 BC. However, the delay of around a year, in which time Cicero married, hardly points to a panicked flight, Cicero's own explicit explanation of poor health appears much more likely. Accompanying him on his journey were his brother Quintus, his cousin Lucius, Servius Sulpicius Rufus. Cicero travelled to Athens, where he again met Atticus, who had fled war-torn Italy to Athens in the 80s.
Atticus had become an honorary citizen of Athens and introduced Cicero to some significant Athenians. In Athens, Cicero visited the sacred sites of the philosophers; the most important of them was the Academy of Plato, where he conversed with the present head of the Academy, Antiochus. Because Cicero's philosophical stance was similar to that of the New Academy as represented by Philo of Larissa, he felt that Antiochus had moved too far away from his predecessor, he was initiated into the Eleusinian Mysteries, which made a strong impression on him, consulted the oracle at Delphi. But first and foremost he consulted different rhetoricians in order to learn a less exhausting style of speaking, his chief instructor was the rhetorician Apollonius Molon of Rhodes. He instructed Cicero in a more expansive and less intense form of oratory that would define Cicero's individual style in y
Divinatio in Caecilium
Cicero's Divinatio in Caecilium is his oration against Quintus Caecilius in the process for selecting a prosecutor of Gaius Verres. Cicero asserts that he, rather than Q. Caecilius, will make the better prosecutor of Verres, the Roman magistrate notorious for his misgovernment of Sicily, it is the only surviving text of a rhetorical genre, the divinatio. The advocate for Verres, against whom the chosen orator must bend his rhetorical skills, was Quintus Hortensius Hortalus, the ally of the optimates and principal orator of the day. Original text
Marcus Tullius Cicero was a Roman statesman, orator and philosopher, who served as consul in the year 63 BC. He came from a wealthy municipal family of the Roman equestrian order, is considered one of Rome's greatest orators and prose stylists, his influence on the Latin language was so immense that the subsequent history of prose, not only in Latin but in European languages up to the 19th century, was said to be either a reaction against or a return to his style. Cicero introduced the Romans to the chief schools of Greek philosophy and created a Latin philosophical vocabulary distinguishing himself as a translator and philosopher. Though he was an accomplished orator and successful lawyer, Cicero believed his political career was his most important achievement, it was during his consulship that the second Catilinarian conspiracy attempted to overthrow the government through an attack on the city by outside forces, Cicero suppressed the revolt by summarily and controversially executing five conspirators.
During the chaotic latter half of the 1st century BC marked by civil wars and the dictatorship of Gaius Julius Caesar, Cicero championed a return to the traditional republican government. Following Julius Caesar's death, Cicero became an enemy of Mark Antony in the ensuing power struggle, attacking him in a series of speeches, he was proscribed as an enemy of the state by the Second Triumvirate and executed by soldiers operating on their behalf in 43 BC after having been intercepted during an attempted flight from the Italian peninsula. His severed hands and head were as a final revenge of Mark Antony, displayed on The Rostra. Petrarch's rediscovery of Cicero's letters is credited for initiating the 14th-century Renaissance in public affairs and classical Roman culture. According to Polish historian Tadeusz Zieliński, "the Renaissance was above all things a revival of Cicero, only after him and through him of the rest of Classical antiquity." The peak of Cicero's authority and prestige came during the 18th-century Enlightenment, his impact on leading Enlightenment thinkers and political theorists such as John Locke, David Hume and Edmund Burke was substantial.
His works rank among the most influential in European culture, today still constitute one of the most important bodies of primary material for the writing and revision of Roman history the last days of the Roman Republic. Cicero was born in 106 BC in a hill town 100 kilometers southeast of Rome, he belonged to the tribus Cornelia. His father possessed good connections in Rome. However, being a semi-invalid, he studied extensively to compensate. Although little is known about Cicero's mother, Helvia, it was common for the wives of important Roman citizens to be responsible for the management of the household. Cicero's brother Quintus wrote in a letter. Cicero's cognomen, or personal surname, comes from the Latin for cicer. Plutarch explains that the name was given to one of Cicero's ancestors who had a cleft in the tip of his nose resembling a chickpea. However, it is more that Cicero's ancestors prospered through the cultivation and sale of chickpeas. Romans chose down-to-earth personal surnames.
The famous family names of Fabius and Piso come from the Latin names of beans and peas, respectively. Plutarch writes that Cicero was urged to change this deprecatory name when he entered politics, but refused, saying that he would make Cicero more glorious than Scaurus and Catulus. During this period in Roman history, "cultured" meant being able to speak both Greek. Cicero was therefore educated in the teachings of the ancient Greek philosophers and historians. Cicero used his knowledge of Greek to translate many of the theoretical concepts of Greek philosophy into Latin, thus translating Greek philosophical works for a larger audience, it was his broad education that tied him to the traditional Roman elite. Cicero's interest in philosophy figured in his career and led to him providing a comprehensive account of Greek philosophy for a Roman audience, including creating a philosophical vocabulary in Latin. In 87 BC, Philo of Larissa, the head of the Academy, founded by Plato in Athens about 300 years earlier, arrived in Rome.
Cicero, "inspired by an extraordinary zeal for philosophy", sat enthusiastically at his feet and absorbed Plato's philosophy. Cicero said of Plato's Dialogues. According to Plutarch, Cicero was an talented student, whose learning attracted attention from all over Rome, affording him the opportunity to study Roman law under Quintus Mucius Scaevola. Cicero's fellow students were Gaius Marius Minor, Servius Sulpicius Rufus, Titus Pomponius; the latter two became Cicero's friends for life, Pomponius would become, in Cicero's own words, "as a second brother", with both maintaining a lifelong correspondence. In 79 BC, Cicero left for Asia Minor and Rhodes; this was to avoid the potential wrath of Sulla, as Plutarch claims, though Cicero himself says it was to hone his skills and improve his p
Epistulae ad Familiares
Epistulae ad Familiares is a collection of letters between Roman politician and orator Marcus Tullius Cicero and various public and private figures. The letters in this collection, together with Cicero's other letters, are considered the most reliable sources of information for the period leading up to the fall of the Roman Republic. Traditionally spanning 16 books, featuring letters from 62 to 43 BCE, the collection was first published by Cicero's freedman and personal secretary Marcus Tullius Tiro sometime after Cicero's death in 43 BCE. A number of manuscript copies of this collection have reached modern times; the earliest witness to the text is a palimpsest on a single leaf, written in uncials of the fifth or sixth century (CLA IV.443. Two more fragments from 12th-century manuscripts – the outer bifolium of an eight-sheet gathering containing 2.1.1–2.17.4, a single leaf containing 5.10.1–5.12.2 – represent one medieval tradition. One complete manuscript survives containing the entire collection, written in the first half of the 9th century in several hands.
There are two groups of medieval manuscripts which represent a tradition independent of M: one provides the text for books 1–8, the other for books 9–16. The X tradition is contaminated by M, thus is of less value than the Y tradition. Works related to Epistulae ad Familiares at Wikisource Cicero, The letters to his friends translated by William Glynn Williams: volume 1, volume 2, volume 3, Loeb Classical Library, at the Internet Archive