Welcome to SARTRIX

Category: Guides


  1. Epigraphs
  2. A guide to SARTRIX
  3. Heaven and Earth
  4. Recent changes and additions
  5. How to support SARTRIX
  6. What does SARTRIX mean?
  7. Who am I?
  8. What does the banner depict?

1 Epigraphs

“Hear, gods, who possess the rudders of sacred wisdom!
Hear, great saviors, and vouchsafe to me
A holy light from the most sacred books!”
Proclus, Hymn IV, lines 1 and 5–6

“Whoever crushes this writing tablet or throws it into water, or sees it but does not tell anyone who does not know it about it, may Aššur, Sîn, Šamaš, Adad and Ištar, Bēl, Nabû, Nerigal; Ištar of Nineveh, Ištar of Arbela and Ištar of the Kidmuri Temple; the gods of heaven and of earth; and all the gods of Assyria curse him with an indissoluble, grievous curse and not have mercy on him all the days of his life!”
SAA 03 034 (off-site link; translation slightly adapted)

“All that fills Heaven and Earth is my own body, and all that governs Heaven and Earth is my own nature.”
Zhang Zai, The Western Inscription 1

“Out of Zeus let us begin, whom never we men leave
Unspoken; filled with Zeus are all streets,
All meeting places of humanity, filled is the sea
And the shores. We are all always in contact with Zeus.
For we too are of his kin.”
Aratus, Phaenomena 1–5

2 A guide to SARTRIX

Content on this site is grouped into six categories:

Gods | Ancient Learning | On Ritual | Neoplatonism | Frameworks | Guides

From last to first:

In addition, there is the the catch-all Under Construction section, where I place pages before they are assigned a category. These groupings are still in flux, so if pages disappear from the categories they were under previously, try using the Search function instead.

3 Heaven and Earth

[… Logan … 𒀭𒆠 …]


4 Recent changes and additions


5 How to support SARTRIX


6 What does SARTRIX mean?

In 1782, Thomas Taylor began a prolific career of translating and popularizing Greek (and sometimes Latin) philosophy. His devotion to the ancient philosophers and their gods made him a minor public figure, nicknamed “The English Pagan”. In 2021, I found it auspicious to name my own endeavors of making ancient learning more accessible after him: the Latin for ‘tailor’ is sartor, and the feminine form of this is SARTRIX.

7 Who am I?

My name is Ɔ. Martiana* (she/her). I am a student of so-called Classical Philology (the study of ancient Greek and Latin literature), and a dabbler in many fields that connect to it. If you want to contact me, you can comment on this site, or find me @SartrixMartiana on Twitter.

As for my name, Martiana may be pronounced something like [mɑɹ.tiˈɑː.nə] or [mɑɹˈsjɑː.nə] (English) or [mɐˈt͡sjaː.nɐ] (German). In Latin and ancient Greek it would be Mārtiāna [maːr.tiˈaː.na] and Μαρτιανή [maːr.ti.aːˈneː], respectively.

The Ɔ. stands for lat. Gāia [ˈɡaː.ja] (gr. Γαΐα [ɡaːˈi.a]). It is not really part of my name but only meant to signal gender, as Gaia was used as a generic women’s name in Latin antiquity.

8 What does the banner depict?

This photo was taken on the Amman Citadel or Jabal al-Galˤah, one of the seven hills of Amman, Jordan. It shows the remains of a temple of Heracles that was dedicated in the mid-second century CE, when the city was known as Philadelphia and part of the Roman province of Arabia. It is theorized that the construction of the temple was never completed.

Amman’s complex history is illustrative of the complexity of ancient history. Once the capital of the independent Canaanite kingdom of ˤAmmān, the city was conquered successively by the Assyrian, Neo-Babylonian and Persian empires in the 1st millennium BCE. During this time, the locals gradually adopted the Aramaic language, and their religious horizons opened up to Mesopotamia.

In the wake of the Persian empire being taken over by Alexander of Macedon and fracturing after his death, Greeks settled in the city and it was renamed Philadelphia, after Ptolemy II Philadephus of Egypt. In the Hellenistic and Roman period, as the temple and other buildings of the period show, city life was very Hellenized; Greek cultural traditions filled the role that Mesopotamian ones had served in the previous empires.

At the same time, Arabs and Arabic were a constant presence in the region. In this as well as the Aramaic language, the city continued to be called ˤAmmān, and when, after the Islamic conquest in the mid-7th century CE, Arabic culture became hegemonic (as Greek and Mesopotamian culture had been before), this once more became the official name. It remained so until the city was abandoned around the 13th century CE, and it was its name again when it reformed and became the capital of a modern country in the 20th century.

In short, as elsewhere around the Mediterranean and beyond, local tradition has always been defined through relationships to changing wider cultural spheres, including those of Canaan, Mesopotamia, […]