Let's not forget the Celts - a series of nomadic tribes which emerged from the Caucasus around 800 BCE, and gradually spread westwards across Europe (600-100 BCE) as far as the Iberian peninsula, Britain and Ireland. Although highly mobile, and masters of blacksmithery and goldsmithery, they were too disorganized to compete with the highly disciplined and centralized State of Rome. Eventually wholly Romanized, at least on the Continent, their Celtic metalwork art included some of the finest metal sculpture of the age (eg. the Broighter Boat -50 BCE). They were also exceptional traders and their intricate metalwork designs were exported and imitated throughout the known world. For stonework by the Celts, see: Celtic Sculpture . For monumental Keltoi stone sculpture, see: the Turoe Stone .
One can state categorically that the colossal metroplex cities of today are going to have to contract, probably substantially. They have attained a scale that no plausible disposition of economy looking ahead can sustain. This is contrary, by the way, to most of the reigning utopian (or even dystopian) fantasies which, any way you cut them, only presume An ever-greater scale of everything. The great renovation of New York City circa 1990-2015 was enabled by Wall Street’s management role in the supernatural debt growth of the period combined with the creaming off of fees, commissions, and bonuses by bankers in the context of absent regulation abetted by pervasive accounting fraud in both private business and government. This is what brought us all the renovated neighborhoods, the scores of new residential skyscrapers, the multiplication of museums and cultural venues, and the buffing up of Central Park. It will be followed by a steep and harrowing descent into disinvestment.
The prolific author/poet/critic/farmer’s works span novel, poetry, and essay forms, but wherever you meet Wendell Berry, he’s sure to open your eyes and expand your perspective. Jayber Crow will transport you to Port William, Kentucky, in one of Berry’s many tales of the fictional town and its inhabitants. Also add Berry’s The Art of the Commonplace (agrarian essays), Hannah Coulter (fiction), A Timbered Choir (poetry), and The Memory of Old Jack (fiction) to your reading list as well.