This seminar explores the way in which Livy used landscape in his history to mediate themes of knowledge. It investigates questions concerning Livy's epistemological frameworks and how they were constituted in his narratives of the landscape and geography, and how his characters understood them and were shown to use that knowledge in the history. In particular, the seminar concentrates on case-studies from the victory of L. Aemilius Paulus over Perseus at the battle of Pydna in book 44, the ill-fated expedition of Perseus’s father, Philip, to the Haemus mountains in book 40, and Scipio’s capture of New Carthage in Spain in book 26. The seminar proposes that the effectiveness of knowledge in and about the landscape, in both acquisition and use, is wedded to the representation of an empirical unity of natural, religious and political components into a system of ‘moral knowledge’, which victorious Roman commanders display and deploy.

About Classics and Ancient History Seminars

Classics and Ancient History seminars are followed by a wine-and-cheese reception ($2 coin donation per person). Enquiries about the seminars may be made to Associate Professor David Pritchard

The Friends of Antiquity, an alumni organisation of the University, runs its own series of public lectures, which take place on Sunday afternoons. The Friends’ program for 2019 can be found at


Michie Building