Quiz of the Year 2022

Gratuitous bonus post; last night we had neighbours round for a pre-New Year’s Eve event, and I was tasked with putting together a quiz. Having put in the work, I thought I might as well share it, in case anyone out there is desperately searching for precisely this sort of thing for this evening… Continue Reading »

Blogs of the Year 2022

As we got towards the end of the year, with the general chaos on the Bird Site and speculation about what might replace it, there was a certain amount of nostalgia for the great days of blogging (as well as the odd suggestion, perhaps not too serious, that these might return). Well, that would be nice – so long as it means more than just all the people on SubStack trying to monetise their followers. My worry is that I seem to find most of the posts that mean the most to me via the Twitter, where I now follow enough people that I regularly stumble across random interesting things, and it doesn’t feel as if I’m going to be able to reconstruct that network on any of the new platforms any time soon… Continue Reading »


Our publicationing makes double-good researches. Incorporated in Bruton (Somerset), London (poste restante) and Lugano (generous national research funds with low levels of diligence).

We have developed innovative digital humanities research method based on active text scanning, and offer major studentships for qualified scholars worth €40,000 (accommodation and subsistence extra) as a discount on regular training course fees of €60,000.


A picture of a middle-aged man with grey hair

Prof Dr Dr Neville D. G. Morley MA PhD FRHistS FRHS NT AI, Director

A picture of a man in glasses

Gwilym Davies, BA MRes, Deputy Director, Finance, IT, sequencing and sock puppets

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Hector, 0.8 FTE postdoctoral researcher. Key publications: ‘Thucydides and Realism: why the Morley interpretation is correct’ and ‘Eff Off G.P. Grundy You’re A Loser’.

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Sir William F. Butler, scientific advisory board. Probably not dead or imaginary.

An alpaca

Bettina von Götzen, administration and vague legal threats

Our well-appointed conference facilities in London.


The Governments of the States Parties Learned Organisations to this Constitution on behalf of their peoples researchers declare: 

That since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defences of peace must be constructed; 

That ignorance of each other’s ways and lives has been a common cause, throughout the history of mankind, of that suspicion and mistrust between the peoples of the world through which their differences have all too often broken into war; 

That the great and terrible war which has now ended was a war made possible by the denial of the democratic principles of the dignity, equality and mutual respect of men, and by the propagation, in their place, through ignorance and prejudice, of the doctrine of the inequality of men and races; 

That the wide diffusion of culture, and the education of humanity for justice and liberty and peace are indispensable to the dignity of man and constitute a sacred duty which all the nations must fulfil in a spirit of mutual assistance and concern, so the Thucydiocy Institute is an incredibly good thing give us all your money,

Time Out

‘The society that separates its scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting by fools.’ I spend so much time thinking of ways to correct this misattributed Thucydides quote politely and constructively, and occasionally noting the context (a lot of “We need a President who lifts!” this year…), that I rarely take the time to think about it in its own right, or why it has such a powerful appeal to some people. Continue Reading »

Games Without Frontiers

There is no divide between people who play games and people who don’t; we all play games, or at least have played them in the past. But there clearly is a divide between people with varying amounts of experience of different sorts of games, and hence different expectations; between those, let us say, who flick through the rulebook for the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Board Game, thinking “okay, straightforward underlying game mechanic, minor tweaks to bring it closer to the TV series, questions about the best strategy to adopt”, and those who look at this slim 20-page booklet, in fairly large font and with quite a lot of illustrations, and respond with “blimey, that’s a bit big and complicated”. Continue Reading »

As the great philosopher Thucydides once said, “The society that separates its scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting by fools.” This quote has been interpreted in many different ways over the years, but I believe it is still applicable to modern society.

At its core, this quote is a reminder that we must not allow our society to become divided between those who think and those who act. It is essential that those who think and those who act are working together in order to achieve the best possible outcome. This is true in any field, whether it is business, politics, or the military. Continue Reading »

Measure of a Man

It’s been a quiet fortnight on Thucydides Twitter – if you discount the 2000-odd P.G. Wodehouse bots continuing to pump out incomprehensible adverts for something that may or may not be linked to World Cup betting. The Social Jukebox bots that used to offer dodgy quotations have vanished, either because they’ve been closed down or because they decided that Space Karen’s far-right takeover was bad for their image; one weight-lifting account announced that ‘We need a President who lifts’, with the inevitable result of a couple of people bringing out the ‘Scholars and Warriors’ quote, and a couple of far-right and/or bot provocateur accounts with Thucydides handles have been churning out ghastliness, but that’s about it – with one minor but interesting exception.

“Man is the most important thing, and everything else is the fruit of man’s labor.” Continue Reading »

Something even weirder than normal is happening on Thucydides Twitter. I hesitate to use the word ‘invasion’ because of its association with the UK government’s racist anti-migrant rhetoric, but certainly I feel like a scientist in the opening act of one of those movies, puzzled by the suddenly anomalous behaviour of the pond snails he’s been studying, not realising that this is just one small segment of a rapid montage, the dots that will not be joined by anyone except the viewer until Act Two… Continue Reading »

The Roman Thing

The History of Ancient Rome, Definitively De-Woked; free from excessive emphasis on imperialism, colonialism and class struggle.

Rome must be considered one of the most successful things in history. In the course of centuries Rome grew from a small town on the Tiber River into a vast thing that ultimately embraced England, all of continental Europe west of the Rhine and south of the Danube, most of Asia west of the Euphrates, northern Africa, and the islands of the Mediterranean. Unlike the Greeks, who excelled in intellectual and artistic endeavours, the Romans achieved greatness in their doing stuff, political, and social institutions. Roman society, during the republic, was governed by a strong doing stuff ethos. While this helps to explain the incessant stuff, it does not account for Rome’s success as a thing. Continue Reading »

The hand on the arm (or in this case the naked calf): affectionate, reassuring – or restraining, controlling, possessive? The expression that we can see on the face of the hand’s owner (the other face is turned away from us and invisible): peaceful and content, or smugly arrogant, or both? The juxtaposition of naked and clothed bodies inevitably raises questions of power, of different kinds – which of course doesn’t preclude affection, or love, but it undoubtedly complicates it. And we observe the scene, and wonder what’s going on, and what the painter thought was going on and intended us to see.

Well, not according to whoever wrote the captions for the Lucian Freud exhibition currently at the National Gallery. Continue Reading »