Thursday, July 07, 2011
Working IX to V
Publication Date: 2007
Category: Ancient History, Humour
Who'll want to read it? Anyone looking for a quirky & readable view of Ancient Greece and Rome.
Point of no return: The sub-title: Orgy planners, funeral clowns and other prized professions of the Ancient World.
Classic line: "Early librarians were full of derring-do.When the Romans overran Greece in 168 B.C., the head librarian of neutral Pergamum led a diplomatic embassy to Rome to keep his library from destruction - and sow the seeds of literacy while he was at it.
It worked - with unintended consequences. After 500 years without a library, Rome now encouraged its generals to bring back libraries as booty. (The most despicable book thief? Dictator-general Sulla, who ripped off Aristotle's library after capturing Athens, along with thousands of art pieces and other glitter.)" pg 287
What's it all about? This book provides an overview of dozens of professions from the Ancient World. Some of the professions still exist including farmers, beekeepers, cooks, physicians and labourers - although the job descriptions have changed just a bit. I just love the black humour in some of the job descriptions: "Winemaker. Make mine unleaded", "Mercenary. The fine art of freelancing - with real lances", "Plumber. Into heavy metal", "Dental Specialist. Open wide". Other jobs will also keep you entertained, such as Sycophant, Anointer, Gladiatrix, Seller of Purple, Armpit Plucker and Dream Incubator. All in all the book provided an interesting way to discover things I didn't even know that I wanted to know!
Publisher: Walker & Company, New York
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