This week: Rome in Greece

These days, the term ‘philhellenism’ (literally, the love of all things Greek) is perhaps most often associated with the Romantic poets and thinkers of the late 18th and 19th centuries – a period during which a ‘new cult of the antique’, as one scholar described it, won many disciples among…

This week: Roman frontiers

The Roman Empire was at its height when Hadrian came to power in AD 117, its territory encircling the Mediterranean, and reaching from Britain in the north as far as Egypt in the south.…

This week: Butser Ancient Farm

'Through a series of spectacular experiments,Β the archaeologist Peter Reynolds... told us more about Iron Age buildings and agriculture than most of the excavations of that period put together,' said The Guardian in its 2001 obituary of the first director of Butser Ancient Farm, the pioneering archaeological open-air museum nestling in…

Shipwrecks Quiz

Located in 1985, the wreck of the Titanic lies how far below the surface of the Atlantic?…

This week: shipwrecks

On 11 October 1982, an estimated global audience of 60 million people tuned in to watch one of the televisual events of the decade: the long-awaited raising of the Mary Rose, Henry VIII's ill-fated Tudor flagship, from the seabed near Portsmouth, where it had rested since capsizing while fighting against…

This week: Feminine power

Few figures in our culture have been so vilified as Lilith, the first wife of Adam – who, according to Jewish tradition, insolently refused to submit to her husband's desires, preferring to leave the perfection of the Garden of Eden, and become the consort of Satan instead.…

This week: Golden manuscripts

Throughout history, gold has captured the imagination – as a glittering symbol of money, sex, power, divine love, or whatever else our hearts desire. From the Greek myth of the Golden Fleece to Titian's Danae, and from the golden objects found in Ancient Egyptian tombs to the quest at the…

Immigration Quiz

What name is given to the chalk ridge that once provided a land connection between England and France?…

This week: Ancient immigration

While the subject of immigration remains perennially high up the modern political agenda, there is a tendency still in Britain to view the movement of people to these shores as a relatively recent phenomenon – as if it only began in the post-war period, with the arrival of the 'Windrush…

This week: Marble Hill

The glorious, far-reaching south-western outlook from Richmond Hill has long been one of England's most famous views. For centuries, painters (including Reynolds, Gainsborough, Constable and Turner) have climbed to the top in search of inspiration from the landscape, and to marvel at the beauty of the Thames as it wends…

This week: Mapping the cosmos

These days, we take it for granted that we carry the world – and the cosmos – in our pockets. Powerful smart phones and ever-more-sophisticated technology mean that we can summon up highly detailed maps both of the earth and the heavens above with just a few taps of the…

This Week: natural disasters

It is a question that has been debated by archaeologists and historians for decades: to what extent can one of the worst disasters in human history, the catastrophic volcanic eruption in c.1600 BC that devastated the ancient Aegean island of Thera (now known as Santorini), be linked to the mysterious…

Volcanoes Quiz

In which year did the eruption of Mount Vesuvius bury Pompeii and Herculaneum under ash and mud?…

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