Edward Thicknesse

croatia

The first Yugoslav

Amidst growing unease with Austrian-Hungarian political dominance in the nineteenth century, Ljudevit Gaj, a visionary 26-year old Croatian linguist and writer, laid the foundations for a vision of a single, united, Slavic group.

Spyros Vassiliou greek modernist

Who are the modern Greeks?

For the west, Greece is classical Greece, the birthplace of western culture, thought, and democracy, while for the Slavic-speaking world it is a brother-nation of the Orthodox church, a common inheritance stretching across eastern Europe.

Ruins at Delphi

Searching for Castalia

The sacred springs of mythology are considered the source of inspiration for the finest poets – both ancient and modern. But like poetry itself, they remain elusive.

ostracism athens

On ostracism

In Ancient Athens, ostracism, a mechanism for exiling citizens written into its laws, was thought to play a pivotal role in preserving the health of the city-state. But how did it play out in practice?

A nineteenth-century engraving of Trabzon, formerly known as Trebizond.

Dreaming of Trebizond

The little-known empire of Trebizond was finally swept away by the rise of the Ottomans in the fifteenth century. But up in the monasteries of the Matzouka the dream of Byzantium remains.

The Mercury Seven immortalised in Tom Wolfe's The Right Stuff

The new Right Stuff

Space entrepreneurs such as Elon Musk are recapturing the bold and individualistic spirit of America’s first astronauts, the Mercury Seven.

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