Sound leaves no ruins and no residues, even though it is experienced constantly. It is ubiquitous but fleeting. Even silence has sound, even absence resonates. Sound and the Ancient Senses aims to hear the lost sounds of antiquity, from the sounds of the human body to those of the gods, from the bathhouse to the Forum, from the chirp of a cicada to the music of the spheres.

Sound plays so great a role in shaping our environments as to make it a crucial sounding board for thinking about space and ecology, emotions and experience, mortality and the divine, orality and textuality, and the self and its connection to others. From antiquity to the present day, poets and philosophers have strained to hear the ways that sounds structure our world and identities.

This volume looks at theories and practices of hearing and producing sounds in ritual contexts, medicine, mourning, music, poetry, drama, erotics, philosophy, rhetoric, linguistics, vocality, and on the page, and shows how ancient ideas of sound still shape how and what we hear today. As the first comprehensive introduction to the soundscapes of antiquity, this volume makes a significant contribution to the burgeoning fields of sound and voice studies and is the final volume of the series, The Senses in Antiquity.

chapter |11 pages


Sounding hearing
ByShane Butler, Sarah Nooter

part I|64 pages

Ancient soundscapes

chapter 1|16 pages

The sound of the sacred

ByTimothy Power

chapter 2|13 pages

Hearing ancient sounds through modern ears

ByArmand D’Angour

chapter 3|17 pages

Sounding out public space in late republican rome

ByErika Holter, Susanne Muth, Sebastian Schwesinger

chapter 4|16 pages

Vocal expression in Roman mourning 1

ByValerie Hope

part II|73 pages

Theories of sound

chapter 5|13 pages


An Aristotelian perspective
ByStephen Kidd

chapter 6|17 pages

Greek acoustic theory

Simple and complex sounds
ByAndrew Barker

chapter 7|21 pages

The soundscape of ancient Greek healing

ByColin Webster

chapter 8|20 pages

Lucretius on sound 1

ByPamela Zinn

part III|105 pages

Philology and sound

chapter 9|18 pages

Gods and vowels

ByJoshua T. Katz

chapter 10|13 pages

The song of the Sirens between sound and sense

BySilvia Montiglio

chapter 11|14 pages

Auditory philology 1

BySean Gurd

chapter 12|14 pages

Sounds of the stage

BySarah Nooter

chapter 13|21 pages

The erogenous ear

ByPauline LeVen

chapter 14|23 pages

Principles of sound reading 1

ByShane Butler