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ODE TO THE PAST (with the occasional nod to the present)

The Delphic Maxims

My latest research is taking me along the ancient paths of Delphi, a city carved into Mount Parnassos in Central Greece--and one of my favorite places on Earth.

The wise men and women who held court at Delphi lived by a list of maxims. Since many of these are still relevant today, I thought  Read More 
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King Solomon's Love

King Solomon has been the subject of extensive research in my office, first for The Riddle of Solomon (Book Two in The Sarah Weston Chronicles, the sequel to The Tenth Saint); and also for The Judgment, a historical novel set to release in May 2016.

There are so many fascinating aspects  Read More 
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The Ancient Roots of Superstition

A broken mirror brings seven years of bad luck! Don’t cross the path of that black cat! Never open an umbrella indoors!
We believe superstitions such as these, sometimes letting them ruin our day, but are there valid reasons for doing so? Considering many superstitions have been around for thousands of years, and  Read More 
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The Neo-Pagans

In ancient Greece, people worshipped the 12 gods of Mount Olympus. You know the ones: Apollo, Athena, Artemis, Ares, Ephestos, Poseidon, Hermes, Hera, Hestia, Demetra, Aphrodite, and the big guy himself, Zeus.

This polytheistic religion was an early form of paganism that involved such rituals as animal sacrifices, experimentation with reality-bending substances, burnt offerings, group  Read More 
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Sexuality in the Ancient World

Birds do it. Bees do it. In the ancient world, everyone did it, including the gods.

We're talking about sex, of course. Sexuality has evolved drastically in the past three millennia, mostly because of the advent of Christianity. Today, we have many taboos that never existed in antiquity. In those days, sex was a  Read More 
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The Antikythera Mechanism

The Antikythera Mechanism (a glorified view)
A hundred years ago, Greek sponge divers brought up an archaeological find that has since baffled scientists. It was a remarkably well preserved mechanism with a complicated gear train and a calendar feature, broken down into months, spanning a 19-year cycle.

The Antikythera Mechanism, named for the Greek island off whose waters it was  Read More 
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The Olympics' ancient roots

The first Olympic games, held in 776 B.C.E. in Olympia, in Greece's Peloponnese peninsula, were among the most notable events in the ancient world. Dedicated to Zeus, they had both athletic and religious significance. Here are a few fun ancient-Olympic facts for you trivia buffs:

* The games were interrupted midstream so that 100 oxen  Read More 
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Medicine in Ancient Times

An article recently posted on biblicalarchaeology.com contemplated the use of medicinal plants and curative techniques in the ancient world. This is a subject I find fascinating, and one I explored in the historical subplot of The Tenth Saint.

How did the ancients combat and prevent disease? And how much of that survives to  Read More 
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The Queen of Sheba

Earlier this year, a British expedition excavating in Gheralta, in the Ethiopian highlands, found what is believed to be the remains of a gold mine operated by the Sabaeans. The clue? A stele marked with Sabaean symbols—namely the sun and crescent moon—and the ruins of a temple.

British archaeologist Louise Schofield led  Read More 
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Ancient symbols: The ankh

As readers of my work have probably surmised, I am fascinated by ancient symbols. They represented (and many still do) meaningful entities or concepts--the sun, life, death, fertility, nature and so forth--and were often the manifestation of the sacred and the mystical. These symbols tell us much about ancient societies and their ways of  Read More 
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