Ancient Greece: How Amazon Women Altered Their Bodies to Prepare for War! (26.7.2022)

An obvious etymology of their name, “breastless,” suggested the belief that they used to burn off the right breast that they might the better draw the bow. In the Iliad Priam tells how he fought against their army in Phrygia; and one of the perilous tasks which set to Bellerophon is to march against the Amazons. In a later Homeric poem, the Amazon Penthesilea appears as a dreaded adversary of the Greeks at Troy. To win the girdle of the Amazon Queen was one of the labours of Heracles. All these adventures happened in Asia Minor; and, though this female folk was located in various places, its original and proper home was ultimately placed on the river Thermodon near the Greek colony of Amisus. But Amazons attacked Greece itself. It was told that Theseus carried off their Queen Antiope, and so they came and invaded Attica. There was a terrible battle in the town of Athens, and the invaders were defeated after a long struggle. At the feast of Theseus the Athenians used to sacrifice to the Amazons; there was a building called the Amazoneion in the western quarter of the city; and the episode was believed by such men as Isocrates and Plato to be as truly an historical fact as the Trojan war itself. The battle of the Greeks with Amazons were a favourite subject of Grecian sculptors; and, like the Trojan war and the adventure of the golden fleece, the Amazon story fitted into the conception of an ancient and long strife between Greece and Asia.’

Down House: Meeting Darwin’s Bees! (9.7.2022)

We have visited Down House a number of times in the past for educational needs – and to marvel at Darwin’s copy of Marx’s ‘Das Kapital’ that is no longer on display (follow the link to read my article on the Buddhist Marxism Alliance UK website)! We last came in March (2022) as ‘Lockdown’ was abating! However, at this time we noticed that there was no Bees! We were told by a member of staff working in the ‘Out-House’ that the Bees are only at Down House during the Summer months and that they are moved to a warmer area (possibly in-doors) for the rest of the year!

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