the Mediterranean

The cruise of a lifetime: Proleterka, by Fleur Jaeggy, reviewed

30 March 2019 9:00 am

Near the start of Fleur Jaeggy’s extraordinary novel Proleterka, the unnamed narrator reflects: ‘Children lose interest in their parents when…

A Roman mosaic showing the crushing of grapes — but we don’t know what the wine tasted like

What did the Romans ever do for us when it comes to viticulture?

17 March 2018 9:00 am

Taste has a well-noted ability to evoke memory, so it is curious how infrequently most wine writers mine their pasts…

Did the fabled Phoenicians ever actually exist?

13 January 2018 9:00 am

So the Phoenicians never existed. Herodotus, that unreliable old fibber, made it all up in the Histories. Is this really…

Homer Simpson meets Homer

9 September 2017 9:00 am

Milan Kundera has said that Homer’s Odyssey was the first novel. I’m not so sure — the verse kind of…

Harry’s Homer — a humorous history

25 July 2015 9:00 am

It was a certain unforgettable ex-girlfriend, Harry Mount confesses — named only as ‘S’ in his dedication — who came…

The battle of Lepanto, October 1571

From Barbary corsairs to people-traffickers: the violence of the Mediterranean

30 May 2015 9:00 am

With summer on its way, thoughts turn south to olive groves and manicured vineyards, to the warm water and hot…

Iceland, depicted in a World Atlas of 1553

The Edge of the World: deep subject, shallow history

8 November 2014 9:00 am

The Mediterranean glows in our conception of the Continent, the warm source of everything that is best in us, the…

The Vikings arrive in England during the second wave of migration (Scandinavian school, 10th century)

Civilisation’s watery superhighway

29 March 2014 9:00 am

The clue is in the title: this is not about the blue-grey-green wet stuff that covers 70 per cent of…