2017 Tours

Vergilian Society Summer Tours 2017

Monument lists are subject to change based on closings for restoration and other factors outside our control. Every attempt is made to see that we visit as many of the sites listed as possible.

Vergilian Society tours are designed to appeal to the needs of a wide range of travelers including high school and college students and instructors; they are particularly suitable for instructors bringing a group of students. We specifically welcome nonprofessionals interested in the ancient Mediterranean.

A Journey through Roman Times: From Mantua, Birthplace of Vergil, to Diocletian’s Palace in Croatia
July 1 – 13, 2017
Director: Beverly Berg
Cisalpine Gaul and Istria were beyond the pale when Vergil was born, but in the Augustan era both were integral parts of Italy, and in later Roman times the area included several of the empire’s largest and most thriving cities. We study the process of Romanization from earlier cities such as Verona, Brescia, and Pula to late antique and early Christian sites such as Aquileia, Porec, and Split. Highlights include Verona, a lovely city of pink marble with an amphitheater, the arch of the Gavii and theater, and Split with Diocletian’s magnificent palace and basilica, one of the great architectural complexes of late antiquity, and Mantua, the birthplace of Vergil. Our day includes homage to statues of Vergil, Roman-inspired Renaissance churches, the Palazzo Te with its frescoes picturing Ovidian themes, and the museum of San Sebastiano. Inquire from the director about a pre-tour visit to Ravenna.
Price: $2,595, Single Supplement $300

Latin Authors in Italy: A Study Tour for Teachers
July 8 – 19, 2017
Directors: Steven L. Tuck, Miami U.; Amy Leonard, Grady High School
This tour is designed for high school teachers to provide experience reading Latin authors in situ and to explore pedagogical techniques while on the sites where Latin authors lived and wrote in Italy. Classroom sessions and thematically relevant site visits will illuminate the lives and works of authors commonly taught in advanced Latin classrooms including but not limited to the AP curriculum: Caesar, Vergil, Martial, Cicero, Pliny the Younger, Ovid, Catullus, Statius, and the Res Gestae. Authors will be drawn from the most commonly used Latin texts: Ecce Romani, Cambridge Latin Course, Latin for the New Millennium, as well as the poetry and prose authors recommended in the AP Latin curriculum guide. We anticipate that this broader design will appeal to all teachers of intermediate and advanced Latin courses.
Price: $2,795

Roman Villas and Gardens: A Vergilian Society Tour of Roman Britain
**Tour Closed**
July 17 – 29, 2017
Phil Stanley and George Perko
This two-week tour of Britain traces the culture, art, and history of this Roman province through the extant remains. With Julius Caesar’s first expedition to Britain in 55 BC and his second in 54 BC, Britain was brought into Rome’s sphere of influence. However, it was not until Claudius’ invasion in 43 AD that this island became a Roman province. The first provincial capital was at Colchester. Later the capital was moved to Londinium (London). For the next two centuries Rome’s power expanded over the entire island and Roman customs and art were introduced into the Celtic world of Britain. We will visit several Celtic sites, such as Badbury Rings, the Cerne Giant, and Maiden Castle in Dorchester. One of the major accomplishments of Rome in Britain was the urbanization of the island. They set up a hierarchy of habitation centers: the provincial capital, Londinium; four coloniae [Colchester, Gloucester (colonia Nervia Glevensium), Lincoln (colonia Lindum), and York]; and a number of towns throughout the island like Verulamium (St. Albans) and Caerwent. Wherever the Romans went, they introduced their bath structure. At Bath significant portions of the extensive Roman bathhouse have been found and preserved. They also introduced the villa system which thrived especially in southern Britain during the 3rd and 4th centuries AD. An important element in any villa was its gardens. Pliny the Younger in his letter to Gallus described his seaside villa at Laurentum. His description of the grounds was used by several gardeners in 18th and 19th century England to lay out the estates of the nobility. In these gardens elements of the Roman garden are present. Several gardens especially embody this Roman quality: Hidcote Manor Garden, and Hever Castle Garden. Stourhead Garden was developed with Vergil’s Aeneid in mind and is described in a Vergilius article (“Henry Hoares’ Virgilian Garden,” Vergilius 42[1996] 3-13). A significant part of Roman life in the provinces was focused on the legions and auxiliaries stationed there. In the north there is Hadrian’s wall with its forts and mile stations. Suggested reading for this tour is the Internet outline at http://userwww.sfsu.edu/~pstanley/clar530.htm, Tacitus’ Agricola, and Pliny the Younger’s Letter to Gallus. Cost includes hotels, breakfasts, ground transportation in England, entrance fees to museums and sites, one lunch and 4 dinners.
Price: $3,882, Single supplement $420

Gladiators and Roman Spectacle: Rome, Pompeii, Cumae and Beyond
July 23 – August 3, 2017
by Steven L. Tuck, Miami University
In many ways the Roman world was organized around the concept of the spectacular. Public spectacle and grand spectacle entertainments are critical to understanding ancient Rome. These spectacles include the lavish feasts, funerals of elite Romans, and triumphal processions as well as the spectacle entertainments that occurred in the amphitheaters, circuses, and theaters of the Roman world. These reinforced Roman identity, created a sense of belonging and served as an outlet for imperial generosity. Even Roman houses exploited the desire for spectacle to create stages for Roman elites to perform for audiences. This twelve day study tour explores the fascinating concept of spectacle in the Roman world. It includes the topics of gladiatorial combat, animal hunts, prisoner executions and other spectacles, the spaces where they occurred, their origins and uses in the Roman world. Days will include lectures, reading of ancient sources on site (and in translation), firsthand investigations of the spaces and objects of spectacle, and some free time to explore on your own. After explorations in Rome we move to our headquarters for this tour at the Villa Vergiliana, the overseas center for the Vergilian Society located in the heart of Campania, where gladiatorial combat and amphitheaters originated. The tour begins and ends in Rome.
Price: $2,795