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Classics professor to discuss Ancient Rome

University of Mississippi

A classics professor selected as the 2015 University of Mississippi Humanities Teacher of the Year is delivering a lecture.

Hilary Becker, assistant professor of classics, addresses “The Economy of Color in Ancient Rome: A Case Study of the Pigment Trade” at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Bryant Hall, Room 209. The free public event is co-sponsored by the UM College of Liberal Arts and the Mississippi Humanities Council.

The lecture is based on Becker’s recent work at the excavation of S. Omobono in Rome, the site of the only pigment shop known from ancient Rome.

“This lecture goes behind the scenes of Roman paintings to flesh out the economics of the ancient pigment supply industry,” she said. “Certain colors in ancient Rome were exorbitantly expensive, providing not only opportunities to show off wealth, but also creating an occasionally dodgy market with some counterfeit materials.

A member of the faculty since 2012, Becker teaches Etruscan, Roman and Greek art and archaeology.