Classics and Latin: When in Rome…

Since half term Year 8 have been learning about the Roman Triumph. This was a militaristic victory parade through Rome, along the Sacred Way (Via Sacra), through the Forum, and up to the great Temple of Jupiter on the Capitoline Hill. The victorious general would be conveyed on a chariot drawn by four horses and would take in the adulation of the Roman populace all along the route. There are a few Hollywood versions of the Roman Triumph, such as Ben Hur (1959) and The Fall of the Roman Empire (1964). While they are spectacularly staged and quite faithful to the sources, they tend not to paint the face of the triumphant general red, as the Romans did. The procession would usually pass under a triumphal arch, several of which are still standing in Rome, and have been copied in London (Marble Arch) and Paris (Arc de Triomphe).

In Rome, the triumphal arches (especially of Titus, Constantine and Septimius Severus) are some of the most impressive remains of the ancient Romans, along with the Pantheon and of course the Colosseum, all of which we hope to see next year on our school trip to Rome (October 2018).

By Dr Giles Gilbert, Head of Classics and Latin