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We’re talking all about the future in this episode — and if we even have one (in English). This is a topic near and dear to Mark’s heart, and in part the subject of his dissertation! We get into the nitty gritty of grammatical tense, ways of thinking about the future, and a mystery cocktail. Our video on the Future Whisky Exchange article about Fut…
 
This episode we have a fascinating conversation with classicist, dramatug, and translator Emma Pauly about all things Dionysian, Greek tragedy, and their translation of Euripides’ Bacchae. We explore how Emma brings their experience with acting and directing to translating and analyzing Greek literature, and how our understanding of the past change…
 
It’s time for some Old Norse, sagas, and daring Viking explorers! In this episode we talk to author Grace Tierney about her newest book, Words the Vikings Gave Us. We had a ton of fun in this conversation, and we’re sure you will too! Grace Tierney’s blog, Wordfoolery Our video on Runes, and NativLang’s matching video Transcript of this episode Thi…
 
It’s April Fool’s Day, and time for the annual Podcast Switcheroo, where podcasters trade episodes to give their audience something a little different and introduce them to a new show. This year we’ve got an episode from “The Greatest Song Ever Sung (Poorly)”, all about the joys and embarrassments of singing karaoke. IN this episode hosts Adam Wain…
 
Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! In this episode we talk about the saint’s history, then dig into the potato — its etymology, its history, and how it’s changed the world. With some tangents about batteries, famines, and travel in the Roman world. Old Potato Cocktail Irish Maid Cocktail Potato battery video Monster video Talking Turkey, episode 24 Season …
 
We’re talking about bread again! This time, about ancient Greek bread — its vocabulary, the many types of bread and how they were made, and the economic aspects of bread production. Josh shares his practical experiences of baking along with his research into the classical Greek world. Josh Nudell’s website Josh on Twitter: @jpnudell Tavola Mediterr…
 
We start off the new year with a three-part discussion of statistics, insurance, stocks, astrologers, coffee, and more. We also trace some of the vocabulary that has come to English from Arabic, along with important mathematical concepts. Podcast recommendation: Khameleon Classics Cocktail: The Revolver Average Part 1 Average Part 2 Average Part 3 …
 
Our hundredth episode! We’re celebrating reaching three digits — and more than 6 years — with a whole bunch of our podcasting friends! These are just some of the amazing creators who make the independent podcasting world so wonderful, and we’re very happy to be connected to them all. Please check out their shows at the links below. We also give you…
 
We talked to Jeremy Swist about his work on the reception of antiquity in heavy metal music. He discussed the ways the genre looks to the past for stories and imagery, and the many fantastic songs and albums that have been produced from this mix. We also talked about the problems with racism and white nationalism that can plague the intersection of…
 
It’s Halloween, and the monsters are out! In this episode we tackle Monster Theory (as formulated by J.J. Cohen) , examine the linguistic and cultural origins of a range of Classical and classic movie monsters, look at how they connect to the history of currency and money, and explore the intersections of monsters and the New Woman. We also sample …
 
We speak to Bet Hucks about Roman importation and love of Egyptian art and other cultural material, the importance of thinking about material remains in assemblages and considering the contexts in which they were displayed, and some innovative ways of bringing the physical experiences of the past to modern audiences. Oh, and also, crocodiles! Bet’s…
 
What do you think the earliest English word was? How could we possibly look for such a thing, and what do the possible options tell us about early English history and the movement of peoples in the early medieval period? We tackle these questions, in an episode about Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Frisians, Celts, Tacitus, Bede, and more. Reminder: Mark wi…
 
It’s time for a reckoning! Or, to be more accurate, a number of reckonings. We talk to Dr. Stephen Chrisomalis, a linguistic anthropologist who specializes in the anthropology of mathematics and the interaction of language, cognition, and culture, about his new book Reckonings. It’s a fascinating discussion of how we write and represent numbers, an…
 
We talked to Isobel Williams about her fascinating and illuminating new translation of selected poems of Catullus, illustrated with her drawings of the Japanese art of rope binding, shibari. Our discussion ranges over the connections between the world of shibari and the emotional struggles depicted in Catullus’s poetry, the way translation and lear…
 
A day after Independence Day in the US, we investigate the history of the name “America” and two related cocktails, with some side trips into the sack of Rome in 410 CE and the use of the Fall of Rome as a historical parallel for the United States. This episode completes our mini series on country names, in the season of national holidays in north …
 
This episode is being released for Canada Day, but it’s not a celebration. This year, even more than most, we feel that this day needs to be one of reckoning with our past and trying to make a better present and future. So we talk about the history of the word Canuck and the various stories that Canadians tell themselves about their county, and we …
 
We talk to Dr. Victoria Austen about Roman gardens. What defines a garden? Where were the gardens at Rome, and what were they for? How did Romans think about gardens and gardening, and what roles did they play in literature, philosophy, and the public relations efforts of emperors? @Vicky_Austen Transcript of this episode This episode on YouTube Ou…
 
We talk about the history of the book, the reading habits of the ancient Romans, the pliability of sheep skins, and the mechanisms of semantic change that cause words to evolve over time. Oh, and we discuss Charles Darwin’s own language for his new theory. "Codex Cocktail" was created for us by Ed Bedford — recipe here Liber Adest newsletter McCutc…
 
This year for April Fool's Day we're taking part in a podcast switcheroo where podcasters are trading episodes to introduce their audiences to other podcasts they think you might enjoy. So we're having the great folks from Bunny Trails, Shauna and Dan, showcase one of their episodes, about the phrase “Queen Bee”. Bunny Trails Podcast Shownotes for …
 
We speak to Dr. Carolyn Willekes about horses in antiquity: their development and domestication, their use in warfare, their training and breeding, and her many adventures riding horses across Greece, Turkey, Mongolia, and Canada. The Horse in the Ancient World: From Bucephalus to the Hippodrome Greek Warriors: Hoplites and Heroes Transcript of thi…
 
Aven: Hi everyone. This isn't a regular episode of the Endless Knot podcast. Just a quick announcement. Mark: I wanted to let you all know about something new that I'm doing: an online seminar series. It's basically a short course open to anyone, on the Speakeasy platform. The title is: "The origins of English: learning to think like an etymologist…
 
We talk about the etymology of “Etymology” itself, and then discuss the basics of historical linguistics, including Grimm’s Law, Verner’s Law, and more. We also talk about Isidore of Seville, the etymological puns of Latin poets, and the way Mark does his research for his videos. The Simple Truth cocktail Our “Etymology” video Isidore of Seville’s …
 
This episode is all about Alexander the Great, and especially about his reception by later Greeks & Romans, the middle ages, and modern popular culture. We had the pleasure of interviewing Meg Finlayson who studies Alexander and his reception and shared her knowledge, enthusiasm, and dreams of a new Alexander movie with Colin Farrell playing Philip…
 
Happy holidays! In this seasonal episode we discuss the origins of the modern Western calendar, the names of the months and days of the week, and the sources we have for Roman calendars and Germanic gods. Happy new year, and may it be better than the last! Our poster store Crosscut Distillery Sabbath Millennial Ovid's Fasti Herbert-Brown, Geraldine…
 
It’s election night 2020 in the US, and our video from 4 years ago about the language of politics is relevant once again. We discuss the changing vocabulary of democracy and what it can tell us about shifting attitudes towards popular rule and politicians. It may not be a complete break from political coverage, but at least it’s mostly about the di…
 
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