Welcome

Welcome to the Iris Classics Centre‚Äôs blog! The Iris Classics Centre, hosted at Cheney School, is a vibrant community learning venue for people of all ages to attend events, workshops, lessons, and exhibitions. The Centre opened in October 2013, and a schedule of events is available on our website. The Centre is founded and run…

Linear B Workshops

Year 8 Latinists were very lucky to welcome Dr Philomen Probert to their lessons this week. Philomen is a lecturer at the Department of Linguistics and Classics at the University of Oxford, and she visited to show how Linear B worked and what it was used for. She brought a range of different examples of…

What’s in the Jars?

For our next lesson, we looked at an area of the Palace at Knossos which appeared on the site map as lots of very long, very narrow rooms. There were various interesting guesses from the groups about what these rooms might be for. Suggestions included a gallery or slave rooms. In fact, these were storage…

Piecing Together the Palace

In this week’s lessons, we have been exploring the challenges of reconstructing the past from fragments of archaeological evidence. We looked at some of the striking reconstructions of the palace at Knossos which Sir Arthur Evans undertook; these have been a big part of what has made visiting and viewing the ancient site so alluring…

Classics Banner Competition: Entries and Winners!

Last term, we launched a competition to design a new banner for the Iris Classics Centre. Over many years, the original banner above the window of the classics centre has been bleached by the sun, so we are in need of a new one! We were very fortunate that classicist Professor Mary Beard offered to…

Introducing the Labyrinth!

We started this term’s first lesson by discussing what a labyrinth was and where the idea of a labyrinth originated – the story Theseus, the Minotaur, Ariadne, and Daedalus’ dark and complicated maze. Archaeologist Arthur Evans had long been obsessed with finding the civilisation behind the labyrinth story; when he uncovered the remains of a…

Persephone in the Underworld: New Perspectives on Ancient Stories

In today’s lessons, we were very fortunate to be visited by three students from the University of Oxford’s Greek Drama team, Nina, Ollie and Charlotte, who delivered workshops introducing their forthcoming musical production at the Oxford Playhouse, Persephone. Persephone is a retelling of the myth of Persephone’s abduction to the Underworld by the Greek god…

Cronus and The Golden Age

In this week’s lessons, we looked at one of the most well-known primordial gods: a Titan called Cronus. We saw how Cronus overpowered his own father, Ouranos, at the encouragement of his mother, Gaia, but then he himself was troubled by a similar prophecy that his own child would rise up against him. As a result,…

Workshop with artist Lydia Hall

In today’s lessons, we were very lucky to be joined by local artist Lydia Hall. Lydia will be working with you over the next few weeks on your graphic novel short stories, and eventually turning your stories, sketches and characters into a published graphic novel detailing the Olympians in the Underworld, as imagined by you!…

Classics Centre Banner Competition!

Over many years, the original banner above the window of the classics centre has been bleached by the sun, so we are in need of a new one! We are therefore launching a school wide competition to design a new banner for the Classics Centre. We are very fortunate that classicist Professor Mary Beard will…

Dinner with some Olympians and Chthonic Gods

In our third lesson, we invited Apollo and Artemis classes to a feast of the gods! There were two tables laid out with place names, menus and various items. One table, with black table cloths, represented some of the chthonic (underworld) gods and creatures, whereas the other table, with white table cloths, represented the Olympians….