I am from Seville, Spain. The city to which two Roman Emperors (Hadrian and Trajan – Italica) owed their ancestry. From Neanderthals to the earliest of the Greeks, southern Spain has it all; from Tartessian culture to Greek, Roman, Visigoth, Moor (Islam, Judaism, and Christianity were all huge religions there at the time), Castilian, French, and basically everything else. Christopher Columbus lived in Seville; from there sailed Francisco Pizarro and Hernan Cortes (I visited his palace often in Castilleja de la Cuesta). There is no end to history in Seville. One could say I was born to be a historian.
I suppose my writing career begun in 1990, when I turned eight years old and my father gave me my first journal. I still own most of these notebooks, records of the past from the mind of a child growing into an adult. Some of my earliest ideas on history come from this period, when, innocently, I treated the streets in which giants grew, lived, and died. Fast forward eighteen years, to 2008. After twenty-six years in this world, I decided it was time to enter the world of academia and learn Anthropology, something that fascinated me. I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS) and I thought, in my naivete, that I would specialize in Archeology and do research in South America, to find evidence of the Book of Mormon. After a year of Anthropology I found out I had to have a language in order to graduate and, looking to fulfill this requirement, I agonized over the choice of Ancient Greek or Proto-Hebrew. Never mind the language did not have to be an Ancient one, I wanted to take one of those.
Enter Classics. I took Ancient Greek and loved it. As I became acquainted with those writers I had known as a little boy, in intimate detail, I found myself taking more and more classes in Ancient Greece and Rome. I took a two year course (four semesters) on the history of Classical Greece, the Hellenistic Period, the Roman Republic, and the Roman Empire, then jumped into Byzantine History just to get a full feel for what is considered the Ancient World. I was hooked. After attending a conference of the Association of Ancient Historians, I switched my Majors to Ancient History and Classics, my minor to Comparative Literature. Anthropology was gone; although that year studying the beginnings of culture and our hominid ancestors has never left me.
I graduated from University with Honors, and begun the MA in 2013, first in Languages and Literature, later in Ancient History. I will have graduated in May of 2015 and I am currently applying for PhD programs. Exciting! While trying not to be overwhelmed with homework I have translated “Trojan Women,” “Prometheus Bound,” and Herodotus to English and Spanish. I have taken six years of Ancient Greek and Latin, and I am extremely excited that you, reader, have found this blog and want to learn more about Thinking Like the Ancients. Stay strapped in; it’s going to get bumpy, but it will be worth the ride.