Author: Dido of Carthage

didoofcarthage: Pan Playing His Pipes by Paulu…


Pan Playing His Pipes by Paulus Moreelse

Johnny van Haeften Gallery, London 

didoofcarthage: Detail of putti from Margarita…


oil on canvas 


didoofcarthage: Flora by Rembrandt van Rijn  1…


Flora by Rembrandt van Rijn 


oil on canvas

The State Hermitage Museum 

italianartsociety: By Anne Leader Caligula was…


By Anne Leader

Caligula was named emperor by the Roman Senate on 18 March 37 CE. He maintained the formula for imperial portraiture established by his predecessors Tiberius and Augustus to stress unity and continuity of imperial leadership. This propaganda was especially important to the Julio-Claudians, who had difficulty producing sons as heirs to the imperial throne. 

Caligula was the son of Germanicus (d. 19) and the great-nephew of the emperor Tiberius, himself only the stepson of Augustus, Thus, in keeping with the Julio-Claudian “look,” we see Caligula as youthful, with an angular face, protruding ears, and short hair combed forward over the forehead. Caligula’s pride, however, often comes through in his portraits. He was known more for his opulence and extravagance than effective governing, and his rule was cut short by assassination in 41 CE.

Ancient writers like Philo and Seneca described Caligula as insane, sex-crazed, and concerned only with himself and his pleasures. Suetonius and Cassius Dio went so far as to accuse him of incest. Though these claims may have merely been part of a campaign to underscore Caligula’s failures as emperor and unpopularity, his infamy continues to capture the imaginations of authors, filmmakers, and gamers.

Emperor Gaius Julius Caesar Germanicus, known as Caligula, marble. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Rogers Fund, 1914 (14.37).

Bust of Caligula, marble. Copenhagen, Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek.

Roman sestertius depicting Caligula, ca. 38 CE. The reverse shows Caligula’s three sisters, Agrippina, Drusilla and Julia Livilla, with whom Caligula was rumoured to have carried on incestuous relationships.

Caligula and Rome, cameo, 37-41 CE. Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna.

grandegyptianmuseum: How three rebel queens…


How three rebel queens of Egypt overthrew an empire and gave birth to a new kingdom

In the 16th century B.C., three steadfast, wise, and powerful queens led Egypt against Hyksos invaders—and won.

IN TIMES OF trouble, ancient Egypt often looked to its female rulers to restore and maintain power. From Hatshepsut to Cleopatra, women ruled, and ruled well, along the Nile. Some of the first wielded their power rebelling against a brutal occupation. These strong leaders came to power, helped drive out the invaders, and gave birth to a new, stronger dynasty. Read more.

met-photos: Porte Septentrionale de la Salle …


Porte Septentrionale de la Salle Hypostyle du Palais de Karnac by Maxime Du Camp, The Met’s Photos

Gilman Collection, Gift of The Howard Gilman Foundation, 2005
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY
Medium: Salted paper print from paper negative

grandegyptianmuseum: The Ramesseum


The Ramesseum

Columns of the hypostyle hall in the Ramesseum. The Mortuary Temple of Ramesses II, West Thebes.

Photo: Robert Harding

lionofchaeronea: Silver tetradrachm of the Si…


Silver tetradrachm of the Sicilian polis of Syracuse.  On the obverse, the head of Athena, encircled by four dolphins; on the reverse, a female charioteer driving a quadriga, with the goddess Nike flying above to crown her.  Signed by the engraver Eukleidas; ca. 405-400 BCE.  Photo credit: Exekias/Wikimedia Commons.

grandegyptianmuseum: Dendera zodiac from th…


Dendera zodiac from the Temple of Hathor

The Temple of Hathor in Dendera, Egypt, was built during the reigns of the last Ptolemies and the Emperor Augustus (first century BC) on the site of an earlier temple. The sculptured artifact contains images of Taurus (the bull) and the Libra (the balance) and has been conjectured to be the basis on which later astronomy systems were based. Vivant Denon, a French archaeologist, drew and distributed the Dendera zodiac in 1802, publishing it in his Voyage dans la Basse et la Haute Égypte (Travels in Egypt) in 1829.
Science Photo Library



Arch of Constantine, By Penna, Agostino. 1827.