Sodalitas Graeciae (Nova Roma)/Annual Report 2760
Annual Report 2006 - 2007
(August 2006 - January 2008)
Ap. Vipsanius Ahenobarbus began the Sodalitas by posting to the Main List the following message on August 10, 2006 (msg. # 45101):
"I'm not sure how much interest there is toward Ancient Greece in this Roman nation, but I would like to start a Sodalitas focused on all aspects of the classical Helenes. Although it might seem inappropriate to have a club centered on a civilization not Roman, one cannot study and appreciate the Romans without also considering the Greeks. The contributions of these eastern neighbors are almost endless. The Greeks heavily influenced Roman literature, art, religion, military, and philosophy at one point or another. Horace even once famously wrote, â€˜Graecia capta ferum victorem cepit et artes intulit agresti Latio, captive Greece took captive her savage conqueror and brought arts into uncultured Latium."
"In addition, the two civilizations interacted in military and political fields continuously throughout Rome's history. I hope that the Sodalitas Graeciae would be able to enrich the other Sodalitates and the general citizen body with information about their influential cousins.
"All I need is some response or "show of hands" from anyone interested in taking part in the Sodalitas."
This message garnered sufficient response that he created the Yahoogroup on August 16. By the end of the month there were nine members; by the end of the year, there were 20. By the end of 2007, 37 people had joined, of whom only six had formally left the group (one of whom has now returned). This is a fairly respectable record for a niche group in Nova Roma.
Ahenobarbus' first order of business was to write a charter and submit it to the Senate. He also immediately began soliciting candidates for arkhon. Our perennial discussions of transliteration and Greek font software commenced immediately, too, and some of us chose Greek names. We considered topics as diverse as Thermopylae, religion, and grammar.
The original charter wes ratified by the Senate on November 25, 2006, thus making SG an official Nova Roma group. On Dec. 4, Lykourgos (Ahenobarbus) announced that the three arkhontes were himself, Xanthe (Scholastica), and Phronekrate (Volentia). Because the original charter specified three arkhontes on the Boule and there were only three volunteers (Phrone had nominated Akaios [C. Moravius Brutus], but he did not respond) and the results were therefore a foregone conclusion, Lykourgos initially did not deem it necessary to hold an election. However, after some discussion, the consensus among the acting arkhontes was that the ecclesia should have the opportunity to ratify or reject them. A Yahoopoll was set on Dec. 7, in which about half the sodalitas voted, unanimously confirming all three arkhontes.
A good thing, too, since the Boule was already hard at work improving the charter. Throughout December the archontes dedicated a great deal of time and thought to writing a model charter; then took a little holiday break. The final edition of the revised charter was posted on Jan. 18, 2007. This reporter begs that the sodales will excuse her for asserting that it is one of the better charters to be found in Nova Roma: both well-considered and well-written, by a team that turned out to work quite easily with one another.
In 2007, Lykourgos began a series of articles about Greek colonies, Phrone posted an essay on the Muses, Xanthe advertised the online Anamathetes course, and the group as a whole continued its valiant struggles with fonts.
And then by the end of April 2007, all activity just vanished. In late summer and autumn a small number of new members joined and announced themselves, but the conversations thus begun did not last beyond two or three posts. The syndrome is endemic in small NR groups; but that scarcely suffices as an excuse. Group leaders are not required to do everything in the group, but they are supposed to lead by example, at least; and this collective lapse into semi-coma can only be ascribed to a failure of leadership. Apparently we burned ourselves out writing the charter; or at least, we never recovered our momentum after our holiday break. In any event, Phrone apologized to the group on behalf of the Boule and pushed to get an election underway as soon as possible, to make up for lost time.
As an excellent omen of general revived interest, no fewer than five people declared their candidacies. Modesta, Xanthe, Dienekes (Triarius), Pwplikola, and Phrone were duly confirmed as the Boule for 2008, in an election held one month late.
Dienekes created Agrigentum as a territory within Mons Aventinus. Pwplikola and Dienekes began rewriting and refurbishing the Sodalitas' Wiki site. The arkhousae, lacking webskills, cheer enthusiastically from the sidelines. And the discussion of Greek fonts continues....
CENSUS / SURVEY 2007
This census was actually taken in February of 2008, but is held to be retroactive to December 2007.
Of the 31 persons listed as members in the Yahoogroup sodalitasgraeciae, three addies were bouncing. Two of these were known to have been cives of Nova Roma, but upon checking with the Album Civium, none of the three was found to be a current civis. One former civis then returned to active interest in the Sodalitas with a new addy. However, there still remained three members to whom every attempt at message delivery failed, the remaining two with bouncing addies and another whose addy is simply no longer functional.
Of the 28 remaining:
- 14 responded to the survey.
- One of the responders was not, technically, a member of the Sodalitas at the end of December 2007, when the survey should have been held, but was a member from October 2006 through May 2007 and has now returned.
- 12 of the responders voted in the SG election.
- 18 members are cives of Nova Roma; 10 are not. One of the responders is a former civis.
- One NR civis is a nonresponder but is known to be on indefinite leave due to RL factors and intends to return.
- 10 of the responders and one of the nonresponders now have Greek names.
- One of the nonresponding NR cives IS Greek.
- Four of the nonresponding NR cives and two of the nonresponding noncives have posted on sodalitasgraeciae.
- Only four people are nonresponding, nonvoting, nonposting noncives. Three more are nonresponding, nonvoting, nonposting cives.
For a Nova Roma group, this is a rather remarkable record of member involvement!