Join host Dr. Chelsea Gardner and co-hosts Dr. Carolyn Laferièrre and Dr. Melissa Funke for a journey through under-explored aspects of archaeology, history, and everyday life in the ancient Mediterranean. Every week we feature an expert whose cutting-edge research sheds light on the real people who lived in ancient Greece, Rome, Egypt, and beyond. Follow us on Twitter @peoplingthepast with the #peoplingpodcast, on Instagram and Facebook @peoplingthepast, and on our website peoplingthepast.com.
Breaking the Bond: Forced Marriage and Cursed Freedom in Ancient Rome with Katharine Huemoeller
What does it mean to be free? In our Season 2 finale episode, archaeologist and historian Dr. Katharine Huemoeller joins the podcast to tell us all about her research on the female, forced, and reproductive aspects of ancient Roman slavery and how manumission and marriage can become intertwined. Join us as we dive into the story of woman named Acte and a cursed grave monument from Rome whose inscriptions reveal some dark secrets about the reality of living as an enslaved - and freed - person in antiquity.
Seize the Clay: Pottery Workshops in Sagalassos with Elizabeth Murphy
You might call ceramics the "plastics" of the ancient world...ubiquitous, indestructible, and incredibly useful! But how do we identify the spaces where ancient potters once made these everyday objects? Dr. Elizabeth Murphy joins the podcast to tell us all about the discovery and excavation of ancient tableware workshops at the site of Sagalassos in modern Turkey. Listen in as artisanal techniques are brought to life and the everyday lives of ancient potters are revealed through archaeological exploration.
There's Something about Mary: Early Cult and Veneration of the Virgin with Sabrina Higgins
It's all about Mary this week on the podcast! We are joined by archaeologist and PtP webmaster Dr. Sabrina Higgins, who takes us through catacombs, churches, and monasteries in Egypt, Syria, and Rome to trace the emergence of the cult of the Virgin Mary in the Mediterranean. Dr. Higgins discusses how Mariologists uncover signs of early worship of the mother of Jesus Christ, and emphasizes the role of artistic depictions of the saint and other material culture in tracing the diffusion of Marian veneration.
Rolling in the Dough: Bread-Making and Roman Bakeries with Jared Benton
The sights, smells, and sounds of an ancient Roman bakery might surprise you...in this episode, historian and archaeologist Dr. Jared Benton joins the show to tell us all about the economics of ancient Roman bread-baking, from the household level to industrial-scale production and how that differed in Italy and North Africa. Come break bread with us as we take a tour of an ancient Roman bakery and listen in on a conversation that ranges from capitalism, social classes, Ostia, Djemila, and...donkeys!
Breaking the Mold: Quasi-Official Coinage in Roman Egypt with Irene Soto Marín
Money makes the ancient Mediterranean world go round...but what happens when there's not enough metal to make official coinage? In this episode, archaeologist Dr. Irene Soto Marín shares her research on quasi-official (not counterfeit!) coinage in Roman Egypt during the 4th century CE, a period of instability and uncertainty. Join us as we learn how the Roman army created a cheap and effective monetary system to meet the needs of the local populations and how they literally "broke the mold" in doing so!
Practical Magic: Ancient Roman Smells and Spells with Britta Ager
Today's episode is simply magical! Join us as we welcome Dr. Britta Ager - an expert in ancient Mediterranean magic, spells, and curses - to the show and hear about her experimental work re-creating some sweet and smelly spells based on surviving recipes from the Egyptian Greek Magical Papyri. Listen in to learn about evidence for how and why people practiced magic in antiquity, from getting the gods on your good side to taking care of your animals, with a few surprises thrown in for good measure!
Great ancient podcast!
Loving season 1 on Ancient Greece and can’t wait to hear more about Ancient Rome in season 2!
The best Ancient Mediterranean podcast I’ve heard
This is the best Ancient Med (“Classics”) podcast I’ve heard. The topics are fascinating and original, and it strikes just the right balance between expertise and accessibility. I really appreciate the emphasis on art and material culture, something that isn’t always a given in ancient world podcasts. The interviews with Radloff and Stager are especially excellent, although I haven’t listened to a bad one yet. My thanks to everyone involved with this wonderful project!
fun for me AND great for teaching!
This podcast is incredible - fun, engaging conversations about life in antiquity, and perfect for assigning to students too. I’m learning so much! A much appreciated change of pace from the longform podcasts about Great Men of antiquity.