What Happened To Pothos?

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agesilaos
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by agesilaos »

Do'n delete them, if they are a bad example they still have purpose. As to Xenophon's charge, I ran the plural search
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Kynoskephalai thread

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Bear in mind the threads started in May 2014, the 5th and 24th respectively and the first and only (overstating evidence again) call for the moderators comes 17 March 2015. Perhaps you just wanted to attack me but is unfair to have Amyntoros as collatoral damage. :roll:
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Paralus
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by Paralus »

Amyntoros is correct in that all three interlocutors (as Agesilaos seems to like the word) share responsibility to one degree or another for the tone of those threads. The two threads mentioned are the product of a small group of three beholden to (or opposed to) specific positions. As is often the way, such can - and did - devolve tighter and tighter into arcane detail piled on detail. That "hothouse" environment has produced posts "attacking" or "defending" said positions becoming rancorous and personal - perceived or otherwise - and not, as Matthew notes, getting anywhere. For that I too share responsibility.

I would not, because of that, want anyone afraid to post here or feeling they would be "laughed out of court". Xenophon is correct in that "specialists" are unlikely to do so. Alexias, You have posted quite often in the past and should feel free to do so again. Derek, too, should emerge from hibernation. Been a while since we've traded a post or six.

Matthew, I'd have to say that the three of us (four with yourself) around a table would be an interesting exercise. Xenophon and I have done this - to detriment of our respective livers as I recall. Three continents makes that somewhat difficult: the Harp in London; the Oak Room of the Algonquin in New York (moderated by Amyntoros); The Trinity in Sydney and Xenophon can suggest a Brisbane locale. Perhaps the roof bar of the Attalos hotel in Athens as neutral territory with Stathi as moderator? The Oak Room with a moderator sounds nice if unaffordable at present (as is Athens).
Paralus
Ἐπὶ τοὺς πατέρας, ὦ κακαὶ κεφαλαί, τοὺς μετὰ Φιλίππου καὶ Ἀλεξάνδρου τὰ ὅλα κατειργασμένους;
Wicked men, you sin against your fathers, who conquered the whole world under Philip and Alexander.

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agesilaos
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by agesilaos »

Athens? Is Korinth not more traditional for Greek Congresses? :lol: My local is The Albert Tavern, South Norwood, and they are used to loud arguments, the local vicar a management consultant known as 'Dave the Briefcase' and myself used terrify fellow drinkers with the seeming vehemence of our disputes had they observed more closely they would have noticed that the rounds were going round all the same, I suppose having jobs which required them to be permanently diplomatic they needed to have a shout - I am just an argumentative so-and-so :twisted:

Mmm...interlocutors, comes from having to pad out essays, but it does seem the best word which won't breach the injunction against foul language :lol:
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Xenophon
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by Xenophon »

Agesilaos wrote:
Bear in mind the threads started in May 2014, the 5th and 24th respectively and the first and only (overstating evidence again) call for the moderators comes 17 March 2015. Perhaps you just wanted to attack me but is unfair to have Amyntoros as collatoral[sic] damage.
The problem of personal attacks, insults and profane language did not arise at the outset, but not until September 2014 did I complain on the "Taktike" thread, and not until January 2015, not so long ago, on the "Kynoskephalae" thread. I do not 'attack' you, but rather complain of the things you post.

How matters have changed from May 2 2014 when you wrote this on the "Andriscus and Archelaus" thread:
Xenophon, I am not the sort to stoop to insults!
That was a hostage to fortune if ever there was one !! :lol: :lol:

And please make note, I find no fault in Amyntoros, but have nothing but admiration for her devotion to duty in keeping this forum alive as the apparently sole moderator. A situation I hope has now been alleviated by some volunteers to assist.
agesilaos
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by agesilaos »

That you will never see why the two other people got so annoyed is quite clear; trying to give you a taste of your own medicine was a poor tactic and ultimately harmed the thread, but you don't get to preface every reply with 'No this is all wrong...' without getting people's backs up, no matter how clever you think you are, the Hemingway Convention applies here, 'Don't tell 'em, show 'em.' :twisted:

I know that you do not intend to besmirch Amyntoros, but a glance at her posts shows she is feeling somewhat vulnerable, I second your wish that she finds a helper soon.

At least this thread seems to have kick started the main one, and please note, the 'blood-sucking lawyer' was not intended seriously, most of my legal friends prefer entirely different fluids. :lol: As to
Xenophon, I am not the sort to stoop to insults!
You drove me to It...but now the wind is from the West I can again tell a hawk from a handsaw.
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Xenophon
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by Xenophon »

Agesilaos wrote:
That you will never see why the two other people got so annoyed is quite clear; trying to give you a taste of your own medicine was a poor tactic and ultimately harmed the thread, but you don't get to preface every reply with 'No this is all wrong...' without getting people's backs up, no matter how clever you think you are, the Hemingway Convention applies here, 'Don't tell 'em, show 'em.'
For most people, an assertion in a debate that another viewpoint is wrong would not be a problem, or lead to annoyance – especially when followed by good reasons for the poster to make that assertion, and references. And of course, if you believe an assertion of mine is wrong you can always refute it, with supporting evidence.I don’t preface every reply with “No this is all wrong”. From memory I have only once suggested an entire post of yours was ‘all wrong’. I frequently say that a particular assertion is ‘wrong’, or ‘incorrect’ or ‘mistaken’, and then state why I say this, with supporting evidence from sources. That is milder by far than calling another’s post ‘guff’, ‘bunk’ or ‘b******t’ as you have done mine. Anyone would find your aggressive sort of language annoying! Lucky for me I don’t stoop to that, or heaven knows the abuse I’d have received in return! And why is it that when Paralus says you are wrong, as he has done on more than one occasion, you don’t get equally annoyed and abuse him ?

At least I cheerfully admit when I am wrong or mistaken, and I believe everyone should.

“Dose of your own medicine”? I never, EVER sneer at another’s posts, or resort to profanities, like some sort of “shock jock” on the radio, or call someone names, or personally attack them, or resort to ‘flaming’.

You think that asserting someone is wrong or mistaken justifies calling them epithets like ‘liar’ (repeatedly), ‘dim-witted’, ‘fantasist’, ’pretender’ and sundry other names I’ve been subjected to, that I can’t recall at present ? I will make so bold as to disagree!

At least this thread seems to have kick started the main one, and please note, the 'blood-sucking lawyer' was not intended seriously, most of my legal friends prefer entirely different fluids. As to

Xenophon, I am not the sort to stoop to insults!

You drove me to It...but now the wind is from the West I can again tell a hawk from a handsaw.
I did not take ‘blood sucking lawyer’ seriously, or take offence, as is obvious from my reply – and I too prefer more pleasant fluids.
“Drove” you to it ? That is no excuse. You, and only you, are responsible for what you post. If you are angered by what is posted, wait until you calm down before rushing to the keyboard, and consider that what you post on the internet is there forever.
You said you were going to put forward some proposals to avoid heated posts – but so far nothing, and you continue as before.
As Judge Roger “The Mad Bull” Bullingham might have put it :
“Criminal, you stand condemned by your own words! “

In the absence of proposals by you, perhaps we could adopt my guideline of attacking the argument put, not the person, or as I said a number of times, most recently on Jan 21 :

“I try, not always successfully, to avoid giving offence, and don't resort to name-calling or profanities for example, no matter how frustrated I may get - for that is the nature of on-line exchanges, as opposed to a lively discussion over a pint of black, or a glass of red.”

That doesn't seem a bad starting point.
sean_m
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by sean_m »

This is a hard one. I would certainly say that the atmosphere has not been very inviting, but I am too tired to juggle real-world identities, handles on this forum, and my memory of past discussions in that other place. As one of the younger members it is not my place to lecture either!

I will say that I do not have time any more to sort through some of these threads with hundreds of long and technical posts, and that some of the unusual ideas there might do better as long essays addressing the obvious objections rather than scattered across multiple posts. There are some threads like that such as the Kynoskefalai thread. Edit: Some might be fun regardless over a cup of tea if I knew the people and could see how serious they were and what sort of response they were interested in.

I will try to post a few Alexandrian things as they come up on other sites and mailing lists, but most of what I come into contact with these days is in German. I have a blog post scheduled for April which has something to do with Alexander.
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agesilaos
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by agesilaos »

Sean, I think you are an Orientalist, at least, what we usedto call an orientalist, when I started out and the Eastern perspective is always interesting and sometimes enlightening; I do think that the cuneiform evidence gets pushed too far on occaision but since Jona Lendering is probably the most guilty and he is responsible for the best site on the web, Livius, one has to accomodate some enthusiasms :lol: But with so many more tablets just waiting translation who knows what we miht have uncovered for us (I am beginning Akkadian but only in transcription,my eyes can barely makeout Greek letters in Loebs these days).

Youth is no bar to lecturing, nor age a permission; knowledge is the key, though lecturing rarely helps. Most people here will listen to a rational argument, or a frivolous one, and respond accordingly. As an Old Bastguard I would council you to just post, it is true that remaining on track gets more difficult as threads go on and digressions expand exponentially, were I of a more liberal disposition I'd call it 'organic' but it's really just rambling :lol:

Much is mentioned as an aside or just casually which the poster thinks is common knowledge and uncontroversial, for instance, only to find that it is, in fact, quite debateable :shock:

Format here is quite varied; I like to post an essay and see what objections there are (sometimes that gets 'atmospheric'), others post queries or polls, eventually they tend to wander, bugger...guess I'm a liberal after all :?
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sean_m
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by sean_m »

You know, people who study the ancient near east in Austria are still allowed to call themselves orientalists (whether because Austria is a bit oldfashioned, or because they are such good gadflies to more traditional classicists I can't say).

For the Kynoskephalai thread, I have never read any of the sources except a translation of Plutarch, let alone modern scholarship, so I do not have much to contribute. In general I have been trying to avoid getting sucked into the bog of classical scholarship on Alexander the Great since there is so much yet so little of it is of any help for the questions which I want to ask, and since people with better Greek than I have been over the Greek literary sources for a hundred and fifty years. Ancient Near Eastern sources have been looked at less thoroughly, and often give new evidence or a new context. It is one thing to say that Arrian's abuse of Darius stands out from the other Greek and Latin sources, another to show that the Astronomical Diary refuses to support it (although whether it says "the king, his troops deserted him" or "the king and his troops ran away" is debatable), and yet another to notice that Arrian's abuse resembles earlier texts abusing a defeated king, and that the Ptolemies were very loud that the Persians had been evil and unlike their own regime. That lets us see why Arrian might tell his story of a weak-minded king who throws down his weapons and runs away.

Edit: I also definitely think there is value in working over some of the old problems, and to having a variety of perspectives from academics to novelists and enthusiasts ... I just do not have time for much Alexander research right now, nor energy for arguing online.
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sikander
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Re: What Happened To Pothos?

Post by sikander »

Greetings Pothosians,

Just stepping in, as one of the moderators, to let members know some of us *are* still present and *do* check in, but the past two years has been rather busy for some of us.

I understand the frustration when a thread evolves into one or two people discussing the minutiae of an event, a person, a sentence in a book- but sometimes, those are the irritating elements that lead to new ideas...

After I settle into what I hope will be my final- or next to final- move, I plan to be more active as a moderator, but it must also be said that some of the moderators are in time zones or regions that make daily visits to Pothos more difficult.. or at least so late that by the time some of us check in, the amazing Amyntoros has already discovered and resolved the issues...

I *have* removed some threads at times when insults became more prevalent than historical discussion, or when spam was apparent, but for the most part, we let things ride..

Glad to see there is still interest.

Regards,
Sikander
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