Universität Erfurt

Antike Kultur

Trinity 08

Visiting Senior Research Fellow, St John's College, Oxford, Academic Year 2007/8: (3) Trinity Term

The President and Fellows of St John’s College Oxford have kindly made me a Visiting Senior Research Fellow for the Academic Year 2007/8. I have reported on Michaelmas and Trinity Terms already (see here and here), and as the end of Hilary Term and - with the end of July 2008 - of my time at Oxford have come, I submit a brief report on my activities for St John's College in Research (which was the main focus of this term), Teaching, et cetera.



Research Project

My main research project (on which see here), a fresh edition, for Oxford Classical Texts (to be published by Oxford University Press), of the Roman History written in Greek by Appian of Alexandria (2nd century AD), progressed as planned; I have finished work on the manuscript tradition and am in the process of producing the edition. Meanwhile, several other publications appeared, or were submitted, during Trinity Term:

Research Publications

Newly Published

  • "Vincere scis, victoria uti nescis": Aspekte der Rückschauverzerrung in der Alten Geschichte. (Antike Kultur und Geschichte, vol. 11) Münster: Lit 2008. 127 pp.
  • Ein Enchiridion oder Handbüchlein geistlicher Gesänge und Psalmen (Erfurt 1524). Speyer 2008. 107 pp. and The Erfurt Enchiridion: A Hymn-Book of 1524. Speyer 2008. 111 pp. (both co-edited with Christiane Brodersen)
  • OIKONOMIKA: Quellen zur Wirtschaftstheorie der griechischen Antike (with G. Audring), Texte zur Forschung 92 (Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft Darmstadt) 2008. 250 pp.
  • Aristeas: Der König und die Bibel. Reclams Universal-Bibliothek 18576. Stuttgart: Reclam 2008. 228 pp.
  • Rev. A.R. Birley, The Roman Government of Britain. Oxford 2005. Historische Zeitschrift 286 (2008) 703-704
  • Rev. J. Creighton,  Britannia: The Creation of a Roman Province. London und New York 2006. Historische Zeitschrift 286 (2008) 704-706

Newly Submitted

  • Entries on "Mediterranean" and "Seven Wonders", for: M.Gagarin, St.Burstein et al. (eds), Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece and Rome (Oxford University Press, New York)
  • Appianos und Eutychia - Der Historiker als Dichter, for: A.Böhn, U.Kittstein, and Ch.Weiß (eds.): Lyrik im historischen Kontext. (Königshausen & Neumann, Würzburg)
  • "Tu felix Britannia?" for "Neue Anforderungen an die Lehre" (Bonn: HRK)
  • Die Geographie des Plinius, for Plinius, Naturgeschichte, Sonderausg. Bd. II (Artemis & Winkler, Düsseldorf)
  • S. Pfeiffer, "The Empire of Alexander and his Successors", for T.Harrison (ed.), Empires in History (translation)
  • Theano: Briefe einer antiken Philosophin (Reclams Universal-Bibliothek, Stuttgart)

Completed and submitted, but still awaiting publication are an article on Hadrian’s Wall for N. Fryde & B. Heuser (eds.), Walls, Ramparts, and Lines of Demarcation (The Shape of War, vol. 1, Muenster: Lit), a contribution on "oracles" for A. Grafton, G. Most & S. Settis (eds.), The Classical Tradition (Cambridge Mass.: Harvard University Press), an article on "Space and Geography" for A. Barchiesi & W. Scheidel (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Roman Studies (Oxford: Oxford University Press), a study entitled "Als die Römer frech geworden" for A. Chaniotis & Ch. Kuhn (eds.), Historizing Classics: Continuities, Contrasts, Controversies (Stuttgart: Steiner) and in a short version for M. Wagner-Egelhaaf (ed.), Hermanns Schlachten (Bielefeld: Aisthesis), the entries for "Appian" and "Seven Wonders" for the new (4th) edition of the "Oxford Classical Dictionary", an essay on Ps.-Aristotle’s "Oikonomika" II for F.Burrer & H.Müller (eds.), Kriegskosten und Kriegsfinanzierung in der Antike (Darmstadt: WBG) 2008, 106-127, and "Die griechische Bibel deutsch" (Stuttgart: Deutsche Bibelstiftung), of which I am a co-editor.
A book I had been the scholarly advisor for (A. Kissel / M. Rohrbeck, Weltwunder: Beeindruckende Bauwerke von der Antike bis heute. Münster: Coppenrath, 2008) was published this term. I was also happy to help a little with the German translation of "The City of the Sharp-Nosed Fish" by Peter Parsons, and with typing the remarkable discovery "Ps.-Plutarch, Peri Paideias" by Donald Russell.

St John's College Research Conference

On Friday of 8th week, 13.6., Jas Elsner (Corpus Christi College) and I organized a research conference, at St John's, on the Artemidorus Papyrus. With its three parts - text, map, and images - this is one of the most spectacular artefacts published in this decade. The aim of the conference was to study the artefact, and its text, map, and images, as "gobbets" first (in a well-established Oxford tradition), thus contributing to a deeper understanding of what the papyrus presents, before discussing probabilities and authenticities. The confererence brought together specialists on all aspects of the papyrus. Papers were given, or responded to, by among others, Dr Gianfranco Adornato (Pisa/Italy), Prof Margarethe Billerbeck (Fribourg/CH), Dr Dirk Obbink (Oxford/UK), Prof Peter Parsons (Oxford/UK), Nicholas Purcell FBA (Oxford/UK), Prof Richard Talbert (UNC Chapel Hill/USA) and Dr Nigel Wilson (Oxford/UK), and the conference attracted some 40 experts from the UK and other European countries. The conference papers will be published.

Papers given at Research Seminars

I was invited to give papers at Research Seminars at several research meetings:

  • Universität Erfurt (on Ps.-Aristotle and the Finances of the Greek Poleis, 13.5.)
  • Universities of Wales Classics Departments Conference on "Journeys and Discoveries" at Gregynog 15.-16.5. (on Imaginary Journeys to Ancient Wonders, 16.5.)
  • UK Ancient Historians Weekend Meeting ("Baines Meeting") in Birmingham 17.-18.5. (on Cetius Faventinus, 18.5.)
  • Universität Münster (on the traditions about the Roman conquest of Germany, 27.6.)
  • Universität Jena (on Ancient Mapping, 10.7.)
  • Universität Erfurt (on Aristeas and the translation of the Hebrew Old Testament into Hellenistic Greek, 18.7.)
  • In addition, the President of St John's College had invited me to give a talk on the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World in the President’s Lodgings on 28.4.


In turn, I was able to follow several research papers both at St John's (notably Claudia Moatti on the "cosmopolitisation" of the Roman world, 8.5.) and at the marvellous Classics Centre (notably Nikolaos Gonis on "A Verse Panegyric on the Macriani", 3.6.).

Journal and Monograph Series

I have continued my work as managing editor of the journal Historia (which the European journal ranking has put into the top group of international "A" Journals for History) and its accompanying monograph series; the second fascicle for this year was published during Trinity Term. In addition, several books have appeared in this term in book series I am editor or co-editor of:

  • Alte Geschichte kompakt: R. Schulz, Athen und Sparta, 3rd ed. 2008
  • Edition Antike: P. Rau (ed.), Plautus, vols. III and IV 2008
  • Enzyklopädie der griechisch-römischen Antike: E. Baltrusch, Außenpolitik, Bünde und Reichsbildung in der Antike, 2008
  • Geschichte erzählt: W. Will: Veni, vidi, vici. Caesar und die Kunst der Selbstdarstellung, 2008
  • Historia Einzelschriften: D. Phillips, Avengers of Blood: Homicide in Athenian Law and Custom from Draco to Demosthenes, 2008
  • Studien zur Alten Geschichte: J. Timmer, Altersgrenzen politischer Partizipation in antiken Gesellschaften, 2008


Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

I have been re-elected to serve on the panel of the German research council (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft), and attended both panel meetings at Bonn (12.3., 6.6., written decision 10.7., evaluation 26.7.); in addition, I was asked to evaluate the University of Frankfurt’s International Graduate School (5.6.).



I was very fortunate to have been allowed to teach for St John’s in the last two terms while my colleague and mentor Nicholas Purcell FBA was on research leave in France. After his return, teaching returned to him, but I was allowed to do some revision tutorials for finalists in the marvellous house we are given for the year (Kathryn Stevens 24.4.; Carmine Battista 25. and 28.4., James Morton 26. and 29.5.). After the end of teaching term I was especially glad to learn that the two finalists whom I had taught during my year at St John's had gained a brilliant First and a good 2:1 Degree.

Exams, Evaluations, References et al.

For my home university, Mannheim, I had to mark six dissertations: Helena Fischer: Schicksal oder freier Wille - Mantische und magische Praktiken der Griechen; Stefanie Erler: Das antike Tarraco und seine heutige Wahrnehmung; Kerstin Hirt: Studien zu den römischen Militärdiplomen; Melanie Mattern: Pflichterfüllung oder Machtmißbrauch? Zur Bedeutung antiker Gladiatorenspiele und Tierhetzen am Beispiel Pompejis; Stephanie Schwarz: Die Rezeption Pompejis in der neuzeitlichen Literatur; Alexander Thürer: Der Theseus-Mythos in attischer Kunst und Politik.
I also was examiner for 6 vivas (Dominik Becki, Stefanie Erler, Philipp Milbich and Peter Werner for the State Exam, Max Roth and Torsten Wondrejz for the M.A.) in Mannheim (14.4.). For other institutions, I was repeatedly asked as a referee or evaluator; they included the "Virtual Jaspers Centre" at Heidelberg (13.4.), the Department of Classics at Yale (30.4.), the Graduate School at the University of Freiburg (27.5.), the Korea Foundation (28.5.), the University of Edinburgh (3.6.), and the German Historical Institute in Washington (12.7.).
The German "Hochschulrektorenkonferenz" (the union of German universities) had invited me to speak on the "British perspective" on teaching at a national conference in Bonn (10./11.4); the relevant publication (with my contribution entitled "Tu Felix Britannia?") is forthcoming.

et cetera

St John’s College

The Visiting Fellowship not only provides the house (on which more below), but also the right to lunch and dine in college - a great privilege! It enabled me to continue to enjoy regular meetings with colleagues and friends from St John’s, to invite others, including Prof Peter Parsons (lunch, 20.3.), Vicky and Dr Anthony Phillips (the college’s former chaplain, lunch 4.4.), Dr Peter Haarer (dinner, 24.4.), Dr Christopher Burnand (dinner, 29.4.), Dr Jas Elsner (lunch, 8.5.), Dr Simon Price (dinner, 8.5.), Prof Getzel and Sheila Cohen (dinner, 11.5.) and to share the company of the guests which colleagues or the college had invited, among them Dr Katherine Clarke (29.4.), Dr Keith Maclennan (1.5.), Prof Claudia Moatti (8.5.), Dr Toni Ñaco del Hoyo (Barcelona, 18.6.) and Dr Keti Gurchiani (Tiflis, 14. and 29.7.). In turn, I found myself invited to lunch at Somerville (Prof Stephanie Dalley, 19.3.), to  pre-dinner drinks in the garden of Dr Howard Carter (10.5.), to lunch at Corpus Christi College with Prof Stephen Harrison (17.6.) and Prof Peter Rhodes (28.7.), to a barbecue with Dr Liz Carmichael (12.7.), and to a "Roman" dinner party with Dr Emily Kearns and Nicholas Purcell FBA (12.7.). A college "highlight" was the "Bagley Wood Progress", visiting the college's own forest (19.5.). Meanwhile, my wife Christiane enjoyed a splendid Spouses' lunch (6.5.) and dinner (27.5.).

Chapel Choir

During term, we again sang two evensongs per week in the wonderful College Chapel (where I also joined the prayers for Steven Wiltshire on 28.3. and 8.4.). I was again even allowed to do some canting, and readings, and to join the choir for the Sunday dinners. Amonst the special choir events were singing from the St John’s tower early on May Morning (1.5.), the dedication of the new organ with midterm communion (14.5.), and, with the Cathedral Singers, the service to commemorate Bishop Kenneth Woollcombe at Christ Church Cathedral (28.5.); add to this an organ recital with Edward Higginbottom (21.6.). It was wonderful to be able to sing in the choir, and Myles Hartley, Dr Martin Stokes and Max Barley have been excellent choir-masters. The Chapel Choir visited my home town Speyer with Mannheim and Heidelberg from 28.6. to 6.7. (with Max Barley staying on in our house in Speyer until 1.8.) - a fitting tribute to my wonderful time in the choir!

22 St Giles

It was our aim to open the house to the college. I held all my teaching in the house, and the conference supper and party after the Artemidorus conference mentioned above. The house also allowed us to have several overnight guests, among them OStD Hartmut and Ulrike Loos (13.-15.3.), Dr Claudia Langen, Prof Stefan Fisch and family (15.-24.3.), Prof Hans-Peter Grüner (17.-18.3.), Nora Abdel Rahman and Prof Veit Rosenberger (19.-26.3.), Julia Gawehn, Stefan Möckel, Sebastian Risse and Franziska Wenzel representing the student body from Erfurt (7.-9.4.), StD Adelheid und OStD Peter Meyer (11.-18.5.), Prof Bärbel und Prof Johannes Kramer (12.-14.5.), my brother Dr Kilian Brodersen and family (12.-19.5.), Prof John K. Davies and Prof Philip van der Eijk (24.5.), Dr Peter and Elisabeth Csajkas (31.5.-2.6.), Prof Richard Talbert (12.-14.6.), Dr Maria Pretzler and Dr Gideon Nisbet (13.-14.6.), StD Petra Hachenburger (27.6.-9.7.), StD Erich Clemens and family (1.-6.7) and others. We could also host lunch or brunch parties for Prof Stephen Harrison and family (22.3.), Jana Ellegast (11.5.), Prof Klaus and Nancy Hulek, Dr Eckehard Schmidt (22.6.) and enjoyed a surprise visits from our friends Dr Susanna Phillippo (22.6) and Dr Nick Starling (28.6.).
In turn, we were fortunate to be invited to lunch with Johanna Boersch-Supan (27.4.) and with Lucy Baxandall and Dr Martin Stokes (28.5.), and to dinner with Mary-Faith and David Raeburn, who had taught me Greek at the JACT Greek Summer School in the mid-1970s (19.4.), Catherine and Prof Kevin Hilliard (3.5.), and as surprise guests at Isobel Palmer's birthday party (31.7.)! We were also able to have some of our children’s friends stay with us, and as an EU citizen temporarily resident in the UK, I was allowed to vote at the Local Election 1.5.!

St Giles Church

It was very good to belong to the parish church of St Giles. Rufus (who celebrated his 15th birthday on 16.3.) and I sang in the choir, so we rehearsed every Friday, and sang both the Mattins and Holy Communion Service, and Evensong every Sunday (with me missing the 8 Evensongs again only during term because of the "rival" evensong with St John’s Chapel Choir). We sang for the Palm Sunday Procession (16.3.), Good Friday Litany (21.3.), Handel’s Messiah 2-3 (21.3.), and the Easter Services (23.3.). Rufus was again the organist for two Services (30.3.). Cynthia Hall is an excellent conductor, and manages to bring the boys and ‘gents’ of this only all-male parish church choir in Oxford to musical excellence in very joyful rehearsals and services.
It was also at St Giles that we were able celebrate our 100th (2x50th) birthday, and our Silver Wedding Anniversary (24.5.) with more than 60 guests who rehearsed, and performed, Haydn's Oxford Symphony, and sang hymns from the earliest full German hymn-book, the Erfurt Enchiridion of 1524. Special thanks go to Catherine Hilliard for a guided tour of St John's library, Cynthia Hall for rehearsing and conducting the orchestra and choir, and Lin Foxhall who gave us as a special present the transport, in late June, of many of our things back to Germany in her car! It was wonderful to be reunited with so many of the friends we have made over the last 25 years. We later enjoyed the Thames "cruise" (a present from our children!) to Wallingford, exploring also Abingdon and Dorchester (19.-20.6.).

Oxford and the Europan School Culham

In Oxford, we enjoyed several memorable theatre productions, mostly in the Oxford Playhouse: Peter Flannery’s great play "Our Friends in the North" (15.3.), the Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre (19.3.), David Edgar’s play on what is British called "Testing the Echo" (20.3.), a very lively production of "Measure for Measure" (North Wall Theatre, 24.3.), the stand-up comedian Rich Hall (25.3.) and the wonderful story-teller Alun Cochrane (Old Fire Station, 29.3.), Helen Edmundson's powerful two-part adapatation of "War and Peace" (29.3.) and Yael Farber's "Molora", a version of the Oresteia by a South African group (2.4.), the Oxford Revue (21.4.), the comedian Daniel Kitson (4.5.), Northern Stage's impressive production of Ibsen's "Doll's House" (7.5.), a student production of Tom Stoppard's "Dirty Linen" (Burton Taylor, 10.5.), a student sketch show on "The Life and Times of Sigmund Freud" (28.5.), and an equally excellent student production of Pinter's "Betrayal" (Burton Taylor, 16.6.).
The two younger of our four children, Edna (17) and Rufus (15), were with me in Oxford; our elder daughter Alma (21) is a student in Munich, while our elder son Isidor (19, who achieved his school-leaving diploma in Germany with a perfect result on 6.3.) and my wife Christiane joined us from Easter onwards. In Oxford, Edna continued her work as a Cadet in the St John Ambulance which holds training sessions every Tuesday in Marston, and Rufus his regular organ lessons with Peter Ward-Jones at St Giles. Edna was so happy about her time here and at the European School that she has now decided to stay in Oxford and finish her school years here (and Alma will be at St John's as the Maximilianeum exchange student 2008/09) - so even though we have to leave Oxford on July 31st, there'll be good opportunities to return!
On one of our last days at St John's, we cycled to visit the grave of Sir Richard and Lady Southern at the Baldons south of Oxford. Sir Richard was president when I first came to the college in 1979/80, and Sheila ran a madrigal group which I was allowed to join in my second year at St John's, 1983/84. The visit was a fitting tribute to our long association with the college. We are most grateful to the president and fellows of St John's College for a wonderful year, and for the chance to get on with research in my field in the ideal place for this: St John's College Oxford!

Kai Brodersen, August 2008



Nutzermenü und Sprachwahl