Oxford Classical Dictionary : “OCD5”

Access is now available to the new, updating edition 5 of the Oxford Classical Dictionary.

Access the dictionary via this link.

In print since 1949, the Oxford Classical Dictionary (OCD) has grown from almost 160 to 6,500 entries on a wide range of topics, and has been an unrivaled single-source reference for the study of the Greco-Roman world.  With its accessible, concise entries, the OCD has long-served as a student’s introduction to richer study, as well as a trusted guide for scholars seeking a ready reference.

Sander Goldberg, Editor in Chief writes:

In planning now for a fifth edition, the OCD confronts not only the familiar challenge of keeping abreast of progress in our dynamic, multi-faceted field, but must engage with a new challenge as well. Where past generations with questions to ask habitually sought out the OCD on its shelf, an ever-growing number of potential users now reach first for one or another digital device and may often content themselves with whatever answers pop up on its screen. That trend away from the stability of print is but one sign of a significant shift in the rhythm and style of academic life. Ours is no longer the world our teachers and our teachers’ teachers knew, and there is no going back, no turning a blind eye, no recourse to half measures in the face of that change. To meet the demands of tomorrow, the OCD must today rethink the very role of a reference tool in this new digital environment. The result of that scrutiny is turning out, happily enough, to be a tremendous opportunity, well in tune with our core values. The field of Classical Studies has never itself been purely text-based: why should its devotees be restricted to research tools that are any more confined to text?

… The collapse of space restrictions will allow for richer and more detailed discussions than before, even as the capabilities of hypertext will enable readers to expand or collapse those discussions to suit their individual interests and abilities. Adding and emending text, however, is not the only change in store: a digital environment promises enrichment far beyond the capabilities of the traditional book. Entries will now be able to integrate maps, images, diagrams, sound clips, and whatever other resources not only clarify issues, but may themselves become substantive elements of the discussion. With the resources of Oxford Scholarship Online at its disposal, OCD5 will also be able to link its entries directly to ancient texts and secondary works, becoming not just a reference tool in its own right but a point of access to a much richer panoply of resources.

Visit the article in full.

“Early exploration of the Black Sea is reflected in the Argonaut story, which, although placed in the generation after the Trojan War, reflects much earlier material (the unusual properties of the Argo go back to an era when seamanship seemed more magic than craft). The Argonauts reached the mouth of the Phasis river (modern Rioni) at the southeastern corner of the Black Sea, and the quest for the Golden Fleece may represent early attempts to profit from the wealth of the remote region of Colchis.”-from the new article on exploration

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