Ancient Rome

How to tell if Jeremy Corbyn is a proper republican

29 August 2015 9:00 am

True to his antique, bearded ideology, guru Corbyn is a ‘republican’, a form of government invented 2,500 years ago. ‘Republic’…

Tips for Boris from imperial Rome

15 August 2015 9:00 am

While the Labour party rakes over its past in an effort to find a policy for its future, the commentators…

Even Nazis weren’t quite sure how to do the Hitler salute

25 July 2015 9:00 am

Gesture politics A royal home movie from 1933 apparently showed the future Queen, aged seven, and her mother giving a…

Vespasian’s Middle East policy (it should be ours, too)

25 July 2015 9:00 am

As Ahmed Rashid argued last week, it is hard to see what the West is doing in the Middle East,…

When is a rape not a rape? Fiona Shaw's Rape of Lucretia at Glyndebourne reviewed

11 July 2015 9:00 am

When is a rape not a rape? It’s an unsettling question — far more so than anything offered up by…

What Tacitus would have made of the applause at Fifa

13 June 2015 9:00 am

Apparently Fifa emperor Sepp Blatter received a ten-minute standing ovation from his 400 staff when he addressed them after his…

Pliny the Younger on Fifa

6 June 2015 9:00 am

In any huge enterprise (like Fifa), where does the rot begin? Pliny the Younger mused on this question in a…

The fall of the Roman republic and the rise of Alex Salmond

4 April 2015 8:00 am

Alex Salmond, the ex-first minister who proved incapable of making Scotland independent, has assured the world that he and his…

When Rome’s 99 per cent stood up

28 March 2015 9:00 am

In the UK the richest 1 per cent — 300,000 — of the working population control 23 per cent of…

Reimaging the lost masterpieces of antiquity

28 March 2015 9:00 am

Martin Gayford visits two new surveys of Greek and Roman sculpture at the British Museum and Palazzo Strozzi. Reimagining what’s lost is as much of an inspiration as what remains

The Green party isn’t nearly tough enough on Ancient Greece

14 March 2015 9:00 am

The Green party’s manifesto appears to make saving the planet only a small element in its otherwise painfully unoriginal agenda.…

Cicero’s advice for Sir Malcolm Rifkind and Jack Straw

7 March 2015 9:00 am

In responding as they did to the Daily Telegraph ‘sting’, Jack Straw and Sir Malcolm Rifkind may well have done…

Julius Caesar could teach Isis a thing or two

21 February 2015 9:00 am

Isis disseminates videos of beheaded captives to spread simple terror. Julius Caesar knew all about it. In his diaries of…

Socrates, Aristophanes and Charlie Hebdo

24 January 2015 9:00 am

What would the ancients have made of Charlie Hebdo? The First Amendment tolerates the expression of opinions, however offensive, but…

What MPs need is an oath with consequences

10 January 2015 9:00 am

Before taking their seats in Parliament, all MPs must swear an oath of allegiance to the Queen. Mark Durkan, MP…

How the Romans taught Latin (N.M. Gwynne would not approve)

13 December 2014 9:00 am

Barely a week passes without someone complaining about the teaching of English or foreign languages, usually because it involves too…

‘The Lion Queen’

Roll up, roll up! A history of the circus from Ancient Egypt to the present

13 December 2014 9:00 am

Nell Gifford joins a colourful troupe of acrobats, contortionists, lion-tamers, freaks and funambulists

No, Richard Branson, our greatest achievements don’t come from our greatest pain

8 November 2014 9:00 am

Explaining the death of a pilot testing a Virgin Galactic rocket-ship, Sir Richard Branson intoned: ‘I truly believe that humanity’s…

Hannibal (and Alexander the Great) vs the Islamic State

18 October 2014 9:00 am

Whatever the Islamic State hopes ultimately to achieve by its current onslaught on all and sundry in the Middle East,…

Plutarch on smartphone addiction

26 July 2014 9:00 am

Adults, we are told, as much as children, become gibbering wrecks if deprived of their mobiles or iPhones for more…

Assisted dying? Ancient religion was all for it

12 July 2014 9:00 am

There is something mildly unexpected about religious groups’ hostility to euthanasia. After all, in the ancient world one of the…

What Julius Caesar would have done about Nigel Farage

7 June 2014 9:00 am

Our politicians are desperately keen to turn the toast of the people, Nigel Farage, into toast himself. But is that…

How the Ancient Greeks did wealth taxes

31 May 2014 9:00 am

After 685 tightly argued pages, the ‘superstar’ economist Thomas Piketty unfolds his master-plan for closing the gap between the rich…

On teaching, St Jerome is with Daisy Christodoulou

22 March 2014 9:00 am

Last week in The Spectator, Daisy Christodoulou argued that, contrary to current educational theory, children learned best via direct instruction…

Cicero would have agreed with Putin

15 March 2014 9:00 am

Last September Russian President Vladimir Putin warned against a ‘unipolar’ world, saying that the national revival of Russia was in…