Thomas Matthews Boehmer is a 2nd year Ancient History and Classical Archaeology student at the University of Warwick.
This blog is recording my experiences of travelling around Delphi in Greece, and along the Fosse Way in England, UK. The areas were once located within different reaches of the Roman Empire. This explains my subtitle, Walking the Roman Provinces.
My ambition is to compare the way in which these landscapes and cultures are described in the 2nd century with my own perceptions and impressions walking the same route today. In this way I hope to discover how journeys along the designated routes were understood in the different outlying areas of the Roman Empire.
Routes around ancient Phokis, where fabled Delphi is located, were first described and recorded by the second-century Greek Pausanias, one of the earliest travel writers. The Fosse Way in contrast is not recorded by any Roman-era writer and the experience of journeying along it at that time is therefore lost.
The two routes pass through areas that were not considered centres of power at the time yet which have significant characteristics typical of the 2nd C.E. Empire. Pausanias’ route works around the Greeks’ sacred mount Parnassus, also valued by the Romans. The Fosse Way probably came into being as a boundary line between the Romans and the native British and so highlights the fortified nature of Roman power.
This project is sponsored by the Lord Rootes Memorial Fund at the University of Warwick.