Latest news and links about borders and borderlands.

Eleutherai as the Gates to Boeotia, in Pratiques militaires et art de la guerre dans le monde grec antique. Études offertes à Pierre Ducrey à l’occasion de son 75e anniversaire, réunies par Cédric Brélaz et Sylvian Fachard, REMA no 6 (2013) 81-106

The Border Demes of Attica: Settlement Patterns and Economy.   AIA Paper (Seattle 2013), AIA/APA 113TH ANNUAL MEETING ABSTRACTS, p. 47. The abstract can also be found here.

New study on the borders of Eretria. In my newly published book (The Defense of the Territory. Study of the Eretrian chora and its fortifications, in French), I explore a new method for studying the borders of ancient city-states (chapter IV). Some pages are also dedicated to the borderlands of Attica (pp. 265-271). A summary of the book can be downloaded here.

– Were there Territorial Waters in Ancient Greece? Most of Attica’s borders, as well as those of many other Greek poleis, were delimited by the sea. What does this mean, concretely? Did the coasts mark the borders, or were the borders offshore? To put it more simply: were there territorial waters in Ancient Greece? Continue reading

– Crossing the land-borders of Attica. We all share personal tales of border-crossings. Whether it involves coming back to the US or passing through several Jordanian check-posts near the Golan Heights, border-crossing is subject to rules and interdictions. Personal effects can be searched at the border. Even if you cross a border without being checked, you are still spontaneously supposed to respect the border regulations. Modern nations impose rules on the movement of persons and goods. In fact, whole arrays of modern regulations characterize modern border-crossing, such as banning the import of meat or a gallon of olive oil. In some cases a visa of entry can be denied. In other cases, the required conditions in order to obtain a visa are such that you might just prefer to stay home instead. Continue reading

– Ancient Borders, Modern Issues. The front page of the Washington Post of 18 September 2011 featured a column entitled “Disputed Territory” discussing China’s territorial claim over the Spratly Islands – the claimant arguing that shards of Chinese pottery unearthed there entitle China to “indisputable sovereignty” over the South China Sea. This is just one of the more than 200 border disputes currently being fought on all five continents. In the 21st century, border disputes are among the first causes of war. Continue reading…

– An important article by A. Bresson, looking at the (high!) custom duties imposed on foreign goods imported into Egypt, as well as the Ptolemaic custom system. A. Bresson, “Wine, Oil and Delicacies at the Pelousion Customs”, in L.-M. Günther & V. Grieb (eds) Das  imperiale Rom und der hellenistische Osten. Festschrift für Jürgen Deininger zum 75. Geburtstag (2012) 69-88.

– Check out the latest issue of National Geographic (September 2012): “Roman frontiers. Rome’s border walls were the beginning of its end”, by A. Curry, Photograph by G. Steinmetz.

– “Maritime disputes. Make law, not war”, The Economist, August 25th 2012, p. 48. A survey of current rules and disputes about sea borders. Of particular interest, the use of old maps, including fake ones, in order to prove sovereignty.