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UI classics department presents lecture on Macedonian Royal Tombs

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- For the last 20 years, scholars have struggled to identify with certainty the contents discovered in the Macedonian Royal Tombs, which were unearthed in 1977 under a great tumulus at Vergina, the ancient city of Aegae.

The University of Iowa classics department's 1997 Stoltenberg Lecture will attempt to answer some of the questions about the historical value of the objects found there.

Eugene N. Borza, professor emeritus, Pennsylvania State University and a professor at Concordia College, will present "Treasures of the Macedonian Royal Tombs" Thursday, Dec. 4 at 8 p.m. in Room 140 Schaeffer Hall. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Objects discovered in the tombs have raised endless scholarly questions including: Is this the tomb of Philip, the father of Alexander the Great? Whose are the bone fragments enclosed in the great gold larnax? What is the meaning of the elaborate frescoes depicting a royal hunt and the rape of Persephone? Are the ivory miniatures portraits of Alexander the Great, his mother, Olympias, his father, Philip, and his wife Eurydice? Were some of the grave goods once the possessions of Alexander the Great himself?

Borza is an internationally-known scholar of Macedonia and Alexander the Great. Among the works he has written or edited are The Impact of Alexander the Great, In the Shadow of Olympus: The Emergence of Macedon, and numerous major articles on Macedonian history. He will discuss the frustrating problems surrounding the identification of the tombs' occupants, the grave goods that accompanied the burials, and the frescoes that decorated the walls, and offer his own solutions to these problems.

At the end of Borza's lecture, UI history professor Peter Green, author of Alexander the Great and Alexander to Actium, will give a brief response.

A reception will follow the lecture and response in Room 302 Shaeffer.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact the department of classics at 335-2323.