A Level Ancient History
Welcome to A Level Ancient History at New College, Swindon!
On this course, you will learn about the civilisations and cultures of antiquity, from the Greek-city states to the Roman Empire, and investigate the way these societies developed over time. To explore the ancient world you will engage with a variety of both literary and archaeological evidence to piece together the past, bringing you face-to-face with the societies that became the foundation of the modern world and the individuals who built it.
In September we will be studying the course completely new, and so the activities here are optional. However if you wish to complete some independent research to familiarise yourself with the ancient world then here are some ideas:
Use the internet to complete research on one or more of the Julio-Claudian dynasty of emperors:
When conducting your research look for answers to the following questions:
1. How did they succeed (take over from) the previous emperor?
2. What were the major achievements of this emperor?
3. What relationship did this emperor have with the Senate, Army and People of Rome?
4. What major building projects were undertaken during this emperor’s reign?
5. What direct challenges did they face during their reign as emperor?
Watch some of the following documentaries:
Meet the Romans with Mary Beard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rggk_H3jEgw
Caligula with Mary Beard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PhiJcedqTjM
Pompeii: Life and Death in a Roman Town with Mary Beard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mnIY6AE4m6E
Tony Robinson’s Romans: Nero: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tJE9Ov8LczM
Tony Robinson’s Romans: Caligula: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Gpectv-3uc
Vespasian, the Path to Power: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r72X5oUPTwM&t=109s
The Spartans with Bettany Hughes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=piAEzVOqHHU
Athens, the Truth about Democracy with Bettany Hughes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kDiO_zQv0Ww
Crucible of Civilisation presented by Liam Neeson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hz7ebSkY2_8
Listen to some of the podcasts from In Our Time where Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss a wide range of topics related to the ancient world: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006qykl/episodes/player?page=1
Omnibus is a magazine dedicated to the ancient world, and covers a broad range of interesting topics, many of which are quirky and obscure! You’ll find answers to questions you had never even thought of asking! Their catalogue is available for free here: https://archive.org/details/omnibusmagazine
Read some articles on Greek and Roman history and learn something interesting – we discuss lots of different topics in Ancient History so you never know, this knowledge may come in handy!
If you wished to read around the subject before beginning in September, then these books would give you an introduction to Greek and Roman History and some of the modules you will be studying.
Remember that purchasing any of these books is only optional, and you do not need to have read anything in advance to begin the course. You will be able to access all of these in the College library, and the course has a dedicated library in the Ancient History classroom.
Mary Beard: SPQR, A History of Ancient Rome. https://amzn.to/35rJdx4
Edith Hall: The Ancient Greeks: Ten Ways they Shaped the Modern World. https://amzn.to/3fgO5cR
Paul Cartledge: The Spartans: An Epic History. https://amzn.to/2W0AO0z
Adrian Goldsworthy: Augustus, From Revolutionary to Emperor. https://amzn.to/2VXXVZI