Tag Archives: Ancient Rome

The Cimbri and the Teutones c.120 BC-101 BC

The Cimbri and the Teutones c.120 BC-101 BC


In 1891, farm workers digging in a peat bog at Gundestrup in the far north of Jutland, Denmark, discovered a large silver cauldron. The cauldron was decorated with spectacular scenes of Celtic gods, warriors, mythological animals and human sacrifice. The workmanship shows that the cauldron was made in Bulgaria in the second century BC by a Thracian craftsman, probably for a Celtic patron. This remarkable artefact is the only surviving legacy of the amazing migration of two early German peoples, the Cimbri and the Teutones.

The end of the gladiators

The end of the gladiators

In AD 350 the gladiatorial games were as popular, magnificent and widespread as they had ever been. An unbroken history of development and adaptation stretching back some 600 years lay behind the combats. A century later not a single gladiator, lanista or munus was to be found anywhere. For an institution that had survived for so long and been so popular to disappear so completely was dramatic indeed.

Hawara mummies

Hawara mummies

Hawara mummies created a sensation when they were discovered, and in 1997 visitors to the British Museum found the first major exhibition of the mummy portraits from the Fayum very disquieting. Some burst into tears, some had to leave, unable to bear the clear bright gaze of the living dead.

Pompey the Great’s death

Pompey the Great’s death

By the autumn of 48 BC, Pompey the Great’s ambitions were in ruins. He had been the most powerful man in Rome; but now, almost 60, he had seen it all slip away. His army smashed by rival Julius Caesar at the battle of Pharsalus, he was on the run across the Mediterranean. There was just one hope left; if he could win Egyptian support, Pompey thought, he might yet turn the war around.

The provinces of Roman Republic

The provinces of Roman Republic

Towards the end of the 2nd century BC, the organization of the Roman state was far more complex than it was during the Punic wars. Its center was still in Rome, with the normal arrangement of the city-state, with a large territory scattered throughout Italy, is full-fledged citizenship who lived dispersed throughout the territory.