Festival talks by Tom Holland

34. THE ILIAD

Generously sponsored by

Tom Holland, classicist, historian and master storyteller, returns to the Ancient World with his unique, captivating and witty take on Homer’s tale of the Trojan War. A retelling of this most enduring of stories, this is for both young and old and all ages in between.

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12. SARUM: OLD AND NEW

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All the world now knows that the spire of Salisbury Cathedral is 123 metres high. To everyone who loves England’s most beautiful city, the chemical attack of last year felt like a violation. South Wiltshire, though, has long stood at the heart of turbulent and violent affairs. Acclaimed historian Tom Holland will explore what it actually means to describe Salisbury as ‘historic’.

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GLADIATORS

Who were the gladiators? And what was the point of the games? Just combat or something more? In this event we will look at the critical role they had in society, the differing types of gladiator and the skills and technique used before putting them to the test in combat.

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ROMAN ASSAULT: THE ART OF WAR

This display will demonstrate the communications, tactics and weapons systems employed by the Roman Army against a fixed position. Witness and understand the methods of communication from command to unit and the fine line that is walked by the battlefield commander between effective command and the “Fog of war”. See the realities of maneuvering during combat and the effectiveness of weapons and armour in the field.

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LIFE IN ROMAN BRITAIN

In this event we will explain what it was like to be both a soldier in the legions and also a Roman civilian. From kit, weaponry and the day-to-day existence of the legionary through to the sophistication of daily life, this will show you the hidden detail of life in Roman Britain.

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75. JERUSALEM: THE LONG VIEW

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For two millennia, this ancient city has been at a focal point of religion, war, and turmoil. Its complex history lies at the heart of its ongoing and turbulent story. In this Long View, we are bringing together two expert historians, Ian Black and Tom Holland, in conversation with Mary Ann Sieghart, to help us understand why it remains so pivotal and at the heart of the ongoing strife in the Middle East.

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72. THE LEGENDS OF ARTHUR: THE ADVENTURES OF SIR LANCELOT

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After seducing audiences, young and old, with his retelling of the Greek myths over the years, Tom Holland triumphantly turned to the legends of King Arthur last summer. This year, he will tell the Tale of Sir Lancelot, bringing his humour and own unique take on this ancient tale of heroism, love and betrayal.

AGE 6 TO ADULT

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