Miranda Barclay (Lower Sixth) has recently undergone a fantastic extra-curricular opportunity to extend her knowledge of the classical world. 

CICERONI Travel invited Miranda and her mother to attend a tour and series of lectures in Herculaneum and Pompeii, delivered by Professor Christopher Smith (former Director of the British School at Rome). Given Miranda’s ambition to read Classics at university, this proved to be an exceptional opportunity.

At the start of the tour, Miranda visited the Greek temples and museum at Paestum on the Gulf of Salerno – a Greek colony taken over by the Romans with the finest surviving examples of the Greek Doric style on the Italian mainland. She spent a day exploring the major surviving public monuments, private houses and Villa of Mysteries in Pompeii before heading on to Naples.

Miranda diligently taking notes in Pompeii

She visited the Naples Archaeological Museum and investigated the extraordinary finds from Herculaneum and Pompeii, later going on to explore the buried city of Herculaneum itself – an incredible reminder of the power of Vesuvius and the fatal eruption on 24th August AD 79. The British School at Rome has for many years maintained an ongoing conservation programme and, via privileged access, Miranda and her mother were able to see the latest developments and revelations at the site. They subsequently visited two small, highly important sites around the Campi Flegrei: Baia, where the Romans relaxed in their luxurious holiday villas, and the Flavian amphitheatre at nearby Pozzuoli, the third largest in Italy.

The trip has been particularly helpful for Miranda to pursue her Latin A level and will hopefully inspire her further for her higher education ambitions.

The Naples Archaeological Museum