How to Fit All of Ancient Greece in an Elevator

(Trade paper)
Dispatches on 14/08/2024


An enormous bestseller in Greece, this is a bold, witty and iconoclastic take on the story of Ancient Greece by a rising star in archaeology

Two strangers meet in a trapped elevator. One is an archaeologist, the other isn't. A simple question, 'What do you do?', becomes the springboard for a dialogue that weaves a fascinating tale...

In How to Fit All of Ancient Greece in an Elevator, acclaimed archaeologist Theodore Papakostas takes the reader on a spectacularly iconoclastic and hugely engrossing journey through Ancient Greece, from its beginnings in prehistory to its end. Marvelling at the exalted moments in Ancient Greek history as well as the more mundane, Papakostas introduces the reader to countless fascinating stories about the cradle of western civilization - many of which upend received wisdom about the empire as well as about archaeology itself. Along the way, he settles questions such as: What did a Minoan princess pack for a trip to Egypt? How did a Mycenaean public servant kill time when he was bored? How did a raunchy dance lead to the birth of Democracy? Why did Heraclitus suggest that Homer should be slapped? Why are the Cyclades called the Cyclades?

A whistle-stop tour through three hundred years of Greek history, How to Fit All of Ancient Greece in an Elevator is an unforgettable love letter to the treasures we've inherited from the ancient world, as well as to those who have helped us unearth them.