Making (Up) History
Darius the Great Invented a Past to Legitimize His Rule By Matt Waters

The ancient Persian empire, founded by Cyrus the Great (559–530 B.C.), was on the verge of chaos. In 525 B.C. Cyrus’s son and successor, Cambyses II, led a campaign in Egypt to expand the empire’s territories. Just three years later, however, Cambyses was forced to return to Persia to put down a revolt by […]

Why Darius Built Persepolis

Persepolis is a mystery. The ancient Persian city boasts some of the world’s most impressive ruins, but no one knows exactly why it was built. The ruling Achaemenid Persian dynasty already had a capital at Pasargadae when Persepolis was founded by Darius I (522–486 B.C.), also known as Darius the Great, and they […]

Death in Louisville, Roman Style

A fascinating episode in the history of Roman archaeology in America took place in Kentucky in the early years of the last century. In 1911 Louisville businessman and community leader Rogers Clark Ballard Thruston traveled to Italy, purchased Roman funerary monuments and shipped them to Louisville. A November 1912 article in the local […]


Editors’ Page: Making the Book
How an Issue Falls into Place By Jack Meinhardt
Past Perfect: The Bronze Horsemen
How an ancient Roman equestrian sculpture inspired Renaissance artists
Horizons: Angkor Wat: The Universe in Miniature
The temple’s five great towers represent the mountainous Olympian abode of the Hindu gods.
Ancient Life: An Ancient Scourge
Polio in Pharaonic Egypt