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Roman Holiday

'There is no place better for the student to understand the Romans, their culture, and their legacy, than the focal point of their Empire, Rome itself. Indeed, it seems, all roads, both physical and intellectual, lead to Rome.

It was with these precepts in mind that the Classics Department organised a trip to the Italian capital for students of Latin and Classical Civilisation, alike. With twenty-four Cokethorpe students accommodated in a monastery in the heart of the city, tranquil and boasting a view of a pleasing number of its seven hills, Rome’s ancient sites were ours to mine for academic gems.

On the first morning of our stay, students emerged from the hubbub of the Metro, only to be greeted by the magnificence of the Colosseum in the bright October sunshine. Awe and admiration were inspired by the scale, beauty, and complex history of this most famous monument to the ambition and brutality of the Roman people. From this point on, there was to be no let-up in our appreciation of Rome’s majestic sites. With expertise and wit embodied by the trip’s leader, Ms Murray, we took in the grandeur of the Roman Forum, the expanse of Circus Maximus, the splendour of the Pantheon, and the plethora of museums housing antiquity’s most prised gifts to posterity.

Unwearied by their explorations, our students enjoyed the chance to visit the Vatican City, with St Peter’s Basilica manifesting the highlight of our final morning’s perambulations. Having exploited their opportunities to sample the glut of authentic Italian pizza, pasta, brioche, and gelato, and returning to Oxfordshire with a taste for only the finest culinary standards, our party will long reflect on the brilliance of the Eternal City, resplendent in its unparalleled heritage, and the impact their visit should have on their learning of ancient language and civilisation.'

Mr Goulding


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