The Classics Department of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is delighted to announce that it will be hosting the 2021 Annual Meeting of the Association of Ancient Historians (AAH). This year’s meeting will take place in an online format from Thursday through Saturday, May 6-8, 2021.



• Registration is now open for the 2021 AAH conference, virtually hosted by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Click here to register by April 30.

• The conference will be held virtually on Zoom, and the link will be provided to all registered participants by May 5.

• Paper presentations are allotted 20 minutes, followed by a 10-minute Q&A period.

• Presenters may pre-record their talks especially in cases where there are connectivity and other issues. Pre-recorded talks will be played at the conference at the speaker’s request, and will only be used for this purpose. No presentations will be recorded during the meeting.

• To make their talks more accessible, presenters are strongly encouraged to upload handouts and slide presentations in advance to a box link sent to all presenters by email. Presenters should make sure their documents are screen-reader friendly and include alt text for all images. If presenters do not plan to share slides and handouts, they should include time in their presentation for reading text and describing images for Blind and low-vision attendees. More tips for making slide presentations accessible can be found here

• All participants will be muted. Participants will be able to convey their questions using the chat box or by voice at the host’s discretion. If you are calling in, dial *9 to raise your hand and the host will unmute you.

• We abide by the SCS 2021 Professional Conduct and Harassment Policy

• For any questions, please contact Jessica Smith ( or Antony Augoustakis ( 


Keynote speakers:

  • Prof. Solange Ashby “Rome in the Borderlands of Nubia: Diplomacy in the Ancient Mediterranean" (AbstractThe fall of Egypt to the Roman Emperor Octavian is most dramatically associated with the suicide of Egypt’s queen Cleopatra VII. With Egypt captured as a colony of Rome, Egypt’s southern neighbors were faced with concluding treaties with a new northern neighbor. Inscriptions at the temple of Philae, located at the traditional border between Egypt and Nubia, record the visits of several ambassadors and high-ranking officials from the kingdom of Meroe (300 BCE – 300 CE) during the exceptionally turbulent period called the “Crisis of the Third Century” (235-284 CE) when infighting among powerful Romans destabilized their empire. Inscribed in Egyptian Demotic and Greek, these epigraphic texts provide fascinating details on the political relations between Meroe and Roman Egypt. Classical historians supplement our knowledge of negotiations held between the two powers at the temple of Philae, the sacred island temple complex of the goddess Isis.)
  •  Prof. Carolina López-Ruiz "Mediterranean Histories and the Phoenicians" (Abstract: In my recent monograph Phoenicians and the Making of the Mediterranean (forthcoming) I explore the role of the Phoenician expansion in the Iron Age transformations of local Mediterranean cultures, especially the so-called “orientalizing” phenomenon. Building on that work, I want to discuss the Phoenicians as historical agents from a broader chronological perspective: These Levantines we know as Phoenicians were deeply intertwined with both regional and Mediterranean-wide historical processes, and even with modern (national) historical narratives, and yet they hardly have a Mediterranean-wide history of their own. This apparent paradox invites debate about disciplinary and interpretive issues, global Mediterranean perspectives, and the complexities of ethnic and cultural identities, including that of the Phoenicians. Along the way, I will make reference to some themes featured in the conference, such as monuments (privilege of Greco-Roman monuments over Phoenician remains, reception of Phoenician or orientalizing art) and of natural disasters and crises (the connection between geo-political changes involving Tyre and Carthage and the sixth century crisis in the western Mediterranean.)

This year's program can be found here