The fourth Kleos issue is out! As always we are proud to present the work of starting scholars of (r)MA, PhD, and even BAlevel.

The papers included in the issue cover a wide range of subjects, ranging from gendered patterns in funerary practices of the Northwest‐European Corded Ware culture to the opportunities that present day collaborations between game developers and scholars of the ancient past can offer us.

For the complete issue, click HERE

By Louise Olerud

The Corded Ware culture (c. 2900-2200 BC; hereafter ‘CWC’ for the phenomenon itself or ‘CW’ as the adjective) is a widespread prehistoric phenomenon encountered throughout Europe and was characterised by standardised burial practices and material culture. Recent studies incorporating scientific methods have revived the traditional hypothesis, that the sudden appearance of the CWC was caused by mass migrations from the Pontic Caspian steppe. Among other things, this new archaeological culture is typically associated with the introduction of a binary gender system and the establishment of a patriarchal society.

However, such a narrative is largely rooted in andro- and ethnocentric, Western assumptions: biological sex is equated with gender, grave goods are taken as a direct representation of identity, and weapons (i.e. the CW ‘battle-axe’) are associated with masculinity. Moreover, burials under barrows are overrepresented in the ‘grand narrative’ of the CWC, while other funerary and depositional contexts are underrepresented.

By Daan van Diemen

This paper analyses the use of the stereotypical concepts of Romanness and barbarity in Pacatus’ Panegyrici Latini 2(12), delivered in 389 AD. The Gallic panegyrist had to address the Eastern Roman emperor Theodosius’ employment of Gothic troops against his Roman adversary, Magnus Maximus, who was stationed in the Western Empire, which could have been grounds for the Western elite to question his legitimacy. This speech is an early example of the deteriorating dichotomy between Romans and non-Romans, a trend which would continue in the fifth century. The speech provides us with a singular Roman perspective on the changing ethnic composition and hierarchy within the Empire.

By analysing Pacatus’ descriptions of the Goths, it becomes clear that they are ascribed more positive, almost Roman traits, while at the same time still corresponding to the prevailing barbarian stereotype to some degree. Moreover, by simultaneously suggesting that Maximus’ soldiers have lost their Roman identity, Pacatus problematises the distinctions between Romans and non-Romans, Goths and barbarians, and consequently the idea of civil war itself, even further.

By Emma Huig

This article discusses similarities between a passage from Niketas Eugenianos’ novel Drosilla and Charikles and the poem anacr. 16. Although connections between Eugenianos’ novel and the Anacreontea poems have been discussed in modern scholarship, this particular resemblance has not yet been discussed. Notable similarities between the passages are, first, a painter that supposedly contributed to the creation of the girls, and second, the use of the metaphor of a mixture of milk and roses to describe the girls’ skin colour.

This article firstly aims to analyse these similarities and discuss the possibility that Eugenianos retrieved inspiration from anacr. 16. As Drosilla and Charikles contains many references to ancient texts, the Anacreontea poems are not the only possible source of inspiration. Therefore, this article secondly aims to compare the passage from Eugenianos’ text with similar descriptions of beautiful people from other ancient and Byzantine novels.

By Ingmar Hof

Augustus, the first Roman emperor, left a legacy that was used and abused by many political actors well after his death, even up to the present day. During the decline of the Western Roman Empire in the early fifth century AD, a Spanish priest named Orosius created a new, ingenious concept of Augustus as the emperor who, as God’s divine instrument, had facilitated the early rise of Christianity. For the next thousand years, this concept was the dominant interpretation of Augustus. One of the most renowned medieval rulers who used Augustus’ legacy for his own purposes, was Charlemagne. This article will examine the extent to which the two so-called ‘pillars of Carolingian reception’, the imperial coronation of 800 AD and Charlemagne’s biography written by Einhard, were based on this ‘Orosian’ perception of Augustus.
By doing so, this article aims to contribute to the ongoing debate concerning Charlemagne’s reception of Augustus. It will conclude that Charlemagne and his contemporaries were not as interested in any Christian aspects of Augustus’ legacy as, given the dominance of Orosius’ perception of Augustus in the Middle Ages, might be expected.

By Marijke van Kempen & Aris Politopoulos

The initial research in the article ‘Climbing on Culture, the public opinion on heritage management through Assassin’s Creed Origins and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey’ focused on understanding how people thought video games help preserve heritage and generate enthusiasm. Although the majority of the participants agreed that they enjoyed the interactivity with cultural heritage through a gaming experience, many also agreed that there is room for progress. Moving away from the survey itself, it is useful to reflect on the relationship between the gaming industry, scholars and heritage in a more general sense. In doing so, heritage may be represented in a better way through means of video games. Two main points will be briefly discussed, namely what the contribution of academics and specialists could be in the production of games and how to achieve cultural diversity in video games.