Ancient greece

Mixed messages about body weight are nothing new

8 August 2020 9:00 am

Tackling obesity is the latest government initiative, universally condemned as nannying. Ask a Spartan. From an early age, Spartan children…

Does classical Athens give us a clue to China’s next move?

18 July 2020 9:00 am

In 1984, China agreed a ‘one country, two systems’ treaty with the UK, designed to control the relationship between Hong…

Why stop at destroying statues?

20 June 2020 9:00 am

The actor John Cleese has been wondering if we should destroy Greek statues because Greeks believed ‘a cultured society was…

Envy is the greatest blight of all

16 May 2020 9:00 am

Gstaad Hippocrates is known as the father of Western medicine and he discovered and named a disease known as ‘micropoulaki’…

Movie-makers should look to the Athenians before cashing in on this crisis

18 April 2020 9:00 am

Covid-19 has not yet reached its peak but already the moguls of the small screen are plotting how to monetise,…

The way Greece has conducted itself in this pandemic is an example to us all

11 April 2020 9:00 am

Aristophanes was a comic genius long before the Marx Brothers, but he also gave good advice to the Athenians: stop…

Coronavirus and the lessons of the Athenian plague

14 March 2020 9:00 am

Plagued by the past

Boris is taking an emperor’s approach to briefings

29 February 2020 9:00 am

The PM is insisting that the briefings he finds in his red box every evening should be, well, brief, and…

Ancient Athens would have been horrified by Trump’s impeachment

15 February 2020 9:00 am

An impeachment trial is overseen by Congress and Senate, who both make the law and (in this case) sit in…

What would the ancient Greeks have made of Megxit?

24 January 2020 10:00 pm

There are as many explanations for Harry and Meghan’s problems with the royal family as there are commentators. May as…

It’s science, not protest, that will save the planet

21 December 2019 9:00 am

One might expect that the challenge of climate change would encourage many young people to take up Stem (science, technology,…

For the ancient Greeks, the only point in taking part was to win

16 November 2019 9:00 am

The England team reached the final of the rugby world cup in Japan but they lost. As athletes, they knew…

Would the Athenians have held a second referendum?

28 September 2019 9:00 am

The Athenians invented the referendum: after debate in the citizens’ assembly, they voted through all political decisions by a show…

Watching Stephen Fry was like being in the presence of a god

31 August 2019 9:00 am

Stephen Fry lies prone on an empty stage. A red ball rolls in from the wings and bashes him in…

Boris is facing his Sparta moment

24 August 2019 9:00 am

The PM’s hero is the Athenian statesman Pericles, and a Periclean crossroads is now approaching. According to the biographer Plutarch,…

Let’s choose our politicians by random selection

20 July 2019 9:00 am

Athens Standing right below the Acropolis, where pure democracy began because public officials were elected by lot, I try to…

Politics, Pandora and the tender leaves of hope

13 July 2019 9:00 am

With parliament irretrievably deadlocked over Brexit and the EU intransigent, there remains little belief that either of the prime ministerial…

Do Greek plays really need a ‘modern twist’?

6 July 2019 9:00 am

Rufus Norris, the National Theatre’s artistic director, has revealed that all those tedious ancient plays will from now on be…

Boris and the perils of popularity

22 June 2019 9:00 am

So: Boris triumphans, ready to deliver a 140-seat majority for the Tories and lead the UK out of Europe and…

Lessons from the Greeks on rebuilding Notre Dame

4 May 2019 9:00 am

As soon as the blaze that nearly brought down Notre Dame was extinguished, two questions were asked: how did it…

Can ancient Greek comedians tell us how to leave the EU?

6 April 2019 9:00 am

Since comedians these days seem to be the authorities on all matters spiritual and temporal (puts on funny voice, knife-crime…

French Phidias: Auguste Rodin in his workshop in Meudon, c.1910

How Rodin made a Parthenon above Paris

28 April 2018 9:00 am

‘My Acropolis,’ Auguste Rodin called his house at Meudon. Here, the sculptor made a Parthenon above Paris. Surrounded by statues…

I didn’t realise Petra was an ad for Merkel’s immigration policy: Civilisations reviewed

3 March 2018 9:00 am

Most of the history I know and remember comes from my inspirational prep school teacher Mr Bradshaw. History was taught…

Troy managed to descend into cliché even when nobody was actually using any words

24 February 2018 9:00 am

ITV’s Marcella (Monday) represents another triumphant breakthrough in the portrayal of female cops on television. Of course, thanks to more…

A recording that makes you realise Les Troyens is one of the greatest operatic masterpieces

16 December 2017 9:00 am

Grade: A-   Berlioz’s Les Troyens, one of the greatest operatic masterpieces, manages to be neglected even if it is…