Ben Kane Classics Talk

On Tuesday evening the fourth form were informed and entertained by bestselling historical author Ben Kane. Ben, wearing full Roman military dress…

On Tuesday evening the fourth form were informed and entertained by bestselling historical author Ben Kane.

Ben, wearing full Roman military dress and equipped with sword, shield and even a Roman Swiss Army knife, spoke about ancient Roman daily life. No gruesome details were spared – whether gladiator sweat bottled and sold to rich women, the dangers of going out without an armed bodyguard at night, or the fire risk of living in a block of flats made of wood.

We learned not just that Roman soldiers in camps in northern Germany seasoned their food with coriander, but we found out what this meant: since two thousand years ago coriander only grew in India, this spice must have been transported by boat along the Silk Road via Egypt, bought in a market Rome and carried, on foot, up into northern Germany to be sold.

Pupils were bursting with questions, and left buzzing about a culture that has done so much to shape our own.

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