Category Archives: 1

Meeting Hemingway’s Hero

I knew a bar called Las Panderetas where bullfighters went and I had seen Nicanor Villalta sitting at a table in the corner one afternoon.  I could have approached him right then but I wasn´t ready, and by the time … Continue reading

Posted in 1, bullfight, fighting bull, Madrid, Spain | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Cicero You Never Knew

Name me a great Roman. Julius Caesar. Good.  Name me another one. Um.  Some gladiator—no, I know: Pontius Pilate. And Cicero?  Do you know what one scholar says about him? “The influence of Cicero upon the history of European literature … Continue reading

Posted in 1, books, Caesar, history, Romans, toga | Tagged , , | 11 Comments

Cervantes Leaves His Pretty Wife and Looks for a Job

A few days after his wedding Cervantes must already have suspected that he had made a mistake. His wife was cheerful and  pretty and passably wealthy but he couldn’t stand her little town. How was he going to spend the … Continue reading

Posted in 1, Cervantes, history, literature, Spain, Spanish Armada | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Giddy-up, Aristotle

This looks like a medieval version of Bing Crosby and Grace Kelly singing “True Love.” But it isn’t anything like that. Those aren’t earphones or the man’s microphone but a…bridle. The woman is riding him. She is Phyllis the Courtesan … Continue reading

Posted in 1, Alexander the Great, Aristotle, art, Basel, France, history, Humanism, Lai d' Aristot, middle ages, philosophy, Phyllis, Renaissance, Toledo | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Una carta auténtica de un soldado romano

Escrita en el siglo II por un joven llamado Apión, natural de un pueblo de Egipto. Se alistó en el ejército romano en Alejandría y se subió a un gran buque-transporte de tropas, que zarpó rumbo a Italia. El barco … Continue reading

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Old Roman Specularis Mines

Spain used to be a kind of Eldorado. It was fabulously rich in minerals. Rome and Carthage both financied their wars with Spanish gold and silver. Roman gold mine of Las Medulas, Leon, Spain    GNFD photo by Rafael Ibez … Continue reading

Posted in 1, archaeology, engineering, mines, mining, Romans, Spain | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Caesar’s Dignity Bridge

“Find me a place where the river is nice and wide,” Julius Caesar told his tribunes. “And sort of mean.” “Yessir.” The “Tusculum portrait”, possibly the only surviving bust of Caesar made during his lifetime (public domain photo) They came … Continue reading

Posted in 1, Caesar, history, Romans, war, warfare | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments