After six months of assiduous blog activity, I have returned to neglecting it somewhat. I have however, started doing a monthly newsletter. If you haven’t already subscribed and would like a short burst of Rome-related photos and chat in your inbox once a month here’s the link

Today’s return to blog activity is really a shameless excuse for self-promotion, a plug for an exciting new enterprise I’m inaugurating this Sunday afternoon, 11 October, at 4pm Rome time (UTC+2, which is 3pm BST, 10am EDT, 7am PDT). I’m going to be giving a live online, onsite tour of the Palatine Hill and Roman Forum. 

The Palatine Hill is one of my absolute favourite places in the city. Its bucolic rurality is peppered with the relics of the palace of those who were once masters of the universe. The air is redolent of the distant echoes of Empire, and the views are splendid. From the rarified heights of the palace, we will come down into the Roman Forum, and wander amid the ruins of what was once the busiest place in the world. We shall imagine ourselves jostling amid all of Roman society, but I’m expecting on a Sunday afternoon in this oddest of years we’ll have it to ourselves. We’ll take a look at a few key examples of the monuments, temples, and political and legal meeting places that once populated the very heart of the Caput Mundi.

The tour will last about an hour, plus Q&A, and will be run as a Zoom webinar (feel free to watch it in your pyjamas, no one will be any the wiser). The cost is €25 per screen connection.

Questions via the chat function will be relayed by my assistant so I can answer questions both in real time during the tour and at the end making it an interactive experience. On a practical level I’ll be using a top-notch gimbal which cuts out the risk of nausea-inducing jerky images, and an iPhone 11 Pro which has excellent picture quality. 

I’ve already been the onsite guide several times for the live lecture/tour series offered by Academy Travel in Australia (they’ve got a really great programme which they’re running all over the world if Antipodean timings work for you), and on Friday I did a live short tour of the Capitoline Hill on Adventures with Sarah’s Facebook page which you can see here. They’ve all been great fun, and the live onsite experience is something that I’m going to run alongside my online talks (dates and topics up until the end of the month are here, November dates and topics coming soon). 

The talks and online tours are two very different approaches but I think both offer ways of Understanding Rome. After all that’s what I’m all about. For the moment we may not be able to be in the same place, but it doesn’t mean we can’t still explore the city together.

I hope to be able to answer lots of your questions on Sunday for this further foray into the world of the online. If you’d like to join please send me an email info at understandingrome dot com.

Very best, Agnes