A Visit to Athens

P1020243 - CopyJust before Christmas I was lucky enough to go on a research trip to Greece, where I spent a happy couple of weeks in various museum workrooms. Naturally I also managed to get in some sightseeing around Athens (helped by the fact that Greek museums are only open for work until 3pm), so I thought I would share a few tips of things to do/see for any RG readers who may be visiting in future.

Obviously, the first four things to visit in Athens are the Acropolis, the Acropolis Museum, the Agora, and the National Archaeological Museum, but I’m pretty sure most readers of this blog would already be heading for those as soon as the plane touched down. So, assuming you’ve already been in Athens a couple of days and have seen all of those, here are my top suggestions of what to do next:
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Weird and Wonderful Classics: Warfare and Weapons

Apologies for getting slightly carried away with the alliteration in the title; it’s to make up for the fact that I wanted to call this ‘Classics and Explosions’ but couldn’t, because frankly there just weren’t much in the way of explosives in the ancient Mediterranean. As already discussed, the closest we really get is ‘Greek Fire’, the mysterious substance invented by the Byzantines: since it couldn’t be extinguished by water, it came in pretty handy in sea-battles. That definitely comes under the W&W heading, but sadly it’s a little bit late for ‘Classics’, and it didn’t really explode as such. However, it turns out on further investigation that there are easily enough other weird and wonderful weapons to make up for this lack.

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