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Professor Bronwen Neil & Dr Fred Hardtke

By Departmental Research Seminar

Tuesday 5 March 2019 (Week 2), 2-3.30pm

Recreation Room (S2.6), Level 3, Australian Hearing Hub, Macquarie University

The Department of Ancient History in conjunction with the Macquarie University Ancient History Association (MAHA) offers a research seminar series, intended to bring together those within Macquarie and outside who have an interest in the languages, histories, and cultures of the ancient world. View the schedule for the research seminar.

All are welcome! Please arrive on time and join us after the seminar for coffee, tea and biscuits!

Convenor: Dr Alexandra Woods Twitter


Professor Bronwen Neil | Director of the Centre for Ancient Cultural Heritage and Environment, Macquarie University

Leadership and Legacy in Late Antiquity: A New Project of the Centre for Ancient Cultural Heritage and Environment

This paper will give an overview of the opportunities for ECRs, including HDRs and postdocs, in the various projects that the Centre for Ancient Cultural Heritage and Environment (CACHE) is supporting in 2019, and a more detailed introduction to the theme Leadership and Legacy. With Eva Anagnostou-Laoutides, I am working to start a new project on crisis and leadership in the eastern Roman Empire from 250-1000 CE, especially in regard to religious responses to crisis in that period. Apocalyptic literature from the late Roman and Byzantine Empires provides a great deal of evidence for people making meaning from disasters that were not of their making, and some that were. I discuss whether this study has any applications for leadership in the current day, in view of the new ARC national interest test (NIT).

Fred Hardtke | Macquarie University

Nilotic History on the Rocks – the Belgian Australian Mission to El Hosh

Located in Upper Egypt 610 km south of Cairo, the site of El Hosh is known for its many rock art localities dating to the Late Palaeolithic, Epipalaeolithic, Predynastic and Dynastic eras. The Late Palaeolitihic art is part of a tradition dated in a site across the Nile from El Hosh (site of Qurta) to greater than 15,000 BP. This represents the oldest rock art in North Africa. This, in addition to the Epipalaeolithic (8500-6500 BC) and Predynastic art, is of immense importance to the understanding of prehistoric activity along the Nile.

The extensive rock art at El Hosh and surrounding areas was first noted by Chester (1892), then Frobenius (Frobenius, 1927) and Winkler (Winkler 1938). A Belgian Mission survey was first conducted in the area in 1998 (Huyge et al. 1998; Huyge 2000-2001). On that occasion, a multitude of sites with thousands of petroglyphs were noted. Attention was paid however, mainly to the oldest rock art in the area (predating 7th Millennium BP) represented by intensively patinated, mushroom-shaped, curvilinear and geometric designs, with no systematic survey of the more common “Predynastic” repertoire.

This lecture concerns the establishment of a new mission to be headed by Macquarie University which will focus on the complete recording, interpretation and publication of the rock art of El Hosh as a primary goal, with a number of cross-disciplinary activities to assist in understanding the lives of these extremely early dwellers on the Nile.

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