In 2018-19 we welcomed a fantastic line up of speakers on a wide range of classical topics. For a full resumé of the year check out our annual review blog, and for our upcoming lecture programme click here.
‘What the Greeks and Romans did for us’ – Dr Adam Hart Davis
Thursday 20th September
We started our fifth year in great style with a prolific author, historian, photographer, broadcaster and scientist renowned for his popular TV programmes, particularly ‘What the Romans did for us’ – Dr Adam Hart-Davis!
‘Septimius Severus in Scotland’ – Dr Simon Elliott
Thursday 18th October
Dr Simon Elliott, historian, archaeologist and Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Kent, showed how Septimius Severus, born in the blistering heat of a North African summer to one of the richest families in the Empire, died in the freezing cold of a Yorkshire winter in February AD 211 in the wild west of the Roman Empire.
‘Roman Art Beyond the Roman Empire: A View from Gandhara and China’ – Dr Peter Stewart
Thursday 22nd November
Our third lecturer, Dr Peter Stewart, Director of Oxford’s Classical Art Research Centre, took us on an artistic journey across the Roman Empire, focusing on two mysterious examples: firstly, an extraordinary suit of clothes decorated with classical images from a grave in the Taklamakan Desert of South-West China; and secondly, the Buddhist sculptures of Gandhara in modern Pakistan, whose makers appear to have drawn upon Roman sculpture to invent a new kind of religious art.
‘Where Eagles Dare – Delphi at the centre of the ancient Mediterranean world’ – Professor Michael Scott
Thursday 10th January
At the dawn of the new year, came a familiar face and we were thrilled to welcome back our very own President – Professor Michael Scott – fresh from filming his latest documentaries on three ancient cities (Cairo, Istanbul and Athens). In his fifth annual presidential lecture, Michael returned to his roots in classical history by speaking about Delphi, the spiritual and cultural hub of the ancient Greek world.
‘The Secrets of Ancient Greek Music’ – Professor Armand D’Angour
Thursday 7th February
Oxford Professor and performance cellist, Armand D’Angour, a world expert on the music of Ancient Greece, shared with us how he pieced together the sounds of music once thought lost forever, as his work on inscriptions, melodic principles and the reconstruction of ancient instruments bore fruit.
‘Boudica – What if she’d won?’ – Manda Scott
Thursday 14th March
Former veterinary surgeon, now novelist, blogger, columnist and broadcaster, M.C. Scott revealed the inspiration behind her writing and her Boudica series, which has been declared a ‘masterpiece of historical fiction’ by the New York Times. Her lecture captured the importance of Druidism in early Britain and the cultural as well as physical damage caused by the Roman invasion.
‘Herodotus: The father of history, the father of non-fiction’ – Tom Holland
Thursday 4th April
Historian Tom Holland, bestselling author of Rubicon, Perisan Fire, Millenium and Dynasty, delighted us with his obvious passion for the tales of Herodotus and inspired us to read widely and embrace the fascinating anecdotes of this ancient historian – for more on his lecture read here!