Votive offerings were gifts that the ancient Greeks and Romans gave to a deity as thanks for bringing good fortune or for granting favours. The offerings served as an important expression of the personal relationship between ancient peoples and their gods and goddesses. Votive Offerings as a Public Act of Devotion Greeks and Romans typically … Read more
Jewellery in Ancient Egypt Jewellery has been worn by ancient cultures around the world for thousands of years. In ancient Egypt both men and women were great lovers of jewellery and adorned themselves with a profusion of charms and amulets. Jewellery also showed wealth and status and offered protection from evil. Although the Egyptians had … Read more
Greek pottery is one of our main points of contact with the ancient world. Greek pots remain in abundance, beginning with those dating to the Minoan era (from around or even before 3000 BC) up until the end of the Hellenistic period (31 BC). As we might expect, they come in a variety of shapes … Read more
Across the ancient world, we find a number of pieces that would have been worn by their owners for the sake of protection – primarily amulets. Jewellery of this apotropaic nature most often takes shape in the form of pendants, and we find them in abundance from a number of civilisations, especially Egypt and Ancient … Read more
What was a symposium? The symposium was an essential part of male civic life in Ancient Greece. It was an event akin to a dinner party, where men would gather to discuss matters (with a particular focus on the philosophical), to enjoy music, dancing and female company, and, crucially, to drink. It was a key … Read more
Who was Dionysus? Dionysus, or Bacchus to the Romans, was the son of Zeus and the mortal Semele. A pregnant Semele begged Zeus to reveal his true form to her - mortals, however, could not look upon the undisguised form of a god without dying - and so she perished when he eventually relented. Zeus … Read more
Changing Preconceptions about Polychromy In recent times, there has been an increasing push from historians, archaeologists and curators to remind the public of one of the greatest misconceptions surrounding ancient art - it wasn't intended to be displayed as simply white marble. In fact, virtually every sculpture and every building was painted in bright colours, … Read more
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