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Flavia Gemina

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About Flavia Gemina

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    Aquilifer

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    http://www.romanmysteries.com
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  • Gender
    Female
  • Location
    Londinium in Britannia
  • Interests
    Stories in all forms, especially books and movies; movie soundtracks, jazz and chillhouse; walking by the river Thames; oh, and the Classical world!

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  1. Flavia Gemina

    Roman Mysteries: The Colossus of Rhodes

    The TV series isn't too bad. They have drastically changed some of the storylines, some writers more than others, and sometimes by necessity. For example, The Gladiators from Capua documents the opening of the Colosseum in Rome, with 50K spectators, tightrope-walking elephants, beast fights (or maybe 'massacre' is more appropriate), criminal execution, and carefully refereed gladiator bouts. The BBC did not have the budget for all that so they dumbed it down a lot. Also, the actor playing Titus was not available, so they used Domitian instead. Mostly they have got the look right, though in season two Flavia and her friends seem to live in a temple, and all the prisons have iron bars. The costume people were the worst offenders, not bothering to consult me about anything. That's why you get 'Smurf hats' during the Saturnalia, instead of the conical freedmen's hats... If only they'd asked me. But no; they knew best. For viewing clips and excerpts, try this link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/cbbc/watch/romanmysteries/ Vale! Caroline
  2. Flavia Gemina

    Roman Mysteries: The Colossus of Rhodes

    Salvete, omnes! Some of you might like to know that you can watch an episode of the new series based on my books online: The Colosssus of Rhodes (part 1) It will be up for five days, until Wednesday 6 August. Enjoy! Flavia Gemina (AKA Caroline Lawrence)
  3. Flavia Gemina

    Review: The Sirens of Surrentum by Caroline Lawrence

    Thanks for the great review, Ursus. However, I must warn parents that The Sirens of Surrentum has the most adult theme of any of the books in the series, being about 'sex and decadence' in ancient Rome. For that reason it is probably not suitable for children under 10. Although I know from my experience as a teacher that if children don't know about things, references to them will go over their heads, I also know that some parents will appreciate this warning. I've tried to find the balance in 'Sirens' but the reviews on Amazon.com show that people aren't happy with what I've done. Interestingly, in England they are a lot more open-minded. Many parents don't mind the blood and gore of the arena, or horses dying in the Circus Maximus, but they object to a sex scene no matter how obliquely written! They also miss the fact that the lesson I am teaching in this book is that you CAN be too young for love. BTW, you can see the various 'themes and topics' I tackle on these pages of my website: Themes and Topic for Books 1 - 4 Themes and Topics for books 5 - 8 Themes and Topics for books 9 - 12 Valete!
  4. Flavia Gemina

    The Final Curtain

    I respectfully disagree that human life was valued any less than it is today. One small example among a plethora of epigrams, epitaphs and laments is the moving poem written by Martial about a female child slave, surely the 'lowest of the low'. To you, my parents, I send on This little girl Erotion The slave I loved, that by your side Her ghost need not be terrified Of the pitch darkness underground Or the great jaws of Hades hound. This winter she would have completed Her sixth year had she not been cheated... etc. (translation James Michie) We also put a value on life. Are we honestly as moved by the death of another baby in Africa as we are by a great artist or statesman? And I disagree that they the Romans thought less about death than we do! The very fact that they had skeleton cups and mosaics and the phrase 'memento mori' meant they thought about death every day. Probably far, far more than we do -- we who are so protected from it. Here are two examples, both from the area around Vesuvius...
  5. Flavia Gemina

    Proof of Citizenship

    Do we need to bother Steven? I thought it was common knowledge that Patricians wore iron rings and Equestrians wore gold rings. I'll go have a search before I email him... Thanks for the plug, Nephele. Sorry I haven't been on the Forum more, I have a book deadline!
  6. Flavia Gemina

    Flavia on the radio

    Even after 30 years here, I haven't lost it. They call it 'mid-Atlantic' here!
  7. Flavia Gemina

    Videos

    Thanks for these! They are great!
  8. Flavia Gemina

    Flavia on the radio

    I was interviewed this morning on the BBC radio travel program Excess Baggage. I was talking about my recent visit to Sofia to watch the filming of season two and also about how I get ideas about ancient Rome by travelling today. You can hear it for the next week if you go HERE and click 'Listen to the most recent Excess Baggage'...
  9. Flavia Gemina

    Discovery Of Osiris

    Yes, Osiris' manly bits were eaten by a fish... but not just any fish: the oxyrhyncus, literally 'sharp-nosed' pike. The city of Oxyrhyncus (where all the papyrus was found) is named after this fish and the inhabitants revered it. (Someone on this forum recommended I read City of the Sharp-nosed Fish, about Greeks in Roman Egypt and I'm glad they did. It's fabulous!)
  10. Flavia Gemina

    So, what are you watching lately?

    Oh dear! Even Ben Kingsley couldn't fight his way out of the layer of cheese which envelops this film. The best thing about The Last Legion -- apart from Aishwarya Rai in a wet tunic -- was identifying the actors: 'Hey! Is that Doctor Bashir from Deep Space Nine? Look! It's Keira Knightley's boyfriend... and the brother from The Mummy... and the kid from Love, Actually. And Vorenus from HBO's Rome, scowling and growling.' One thing it did NOT have was the least whiff of authenticity. Rome didn't feel or look like Rome. Capri was obviously half shot in Yugoslavia or somewhere eastern european and cloudy. The special effects were dire (reminiscent of sword'n'sandals epics from the 60's), the battle scenes were boring and silly... And Colin Firth as a Roman commander? No way. He looks like he's wearing a cardigan even when it's a leather cuirass. Verdict: v. amusing (but sadly not in the way they intended)
  11. Flavia Gemina

    So, what are you watching lately?

    I haven't had the heart to watch it yet, for fear of being unable to suspend reality for the entertainment of historical inaccuracy, but there is a discussion of it here. That discussion is mostly speculative though... It doesn't seem that many of us here wanted to take a chance on it. I'm going to see it this afternoon. I will report back. But I think you are right not to get your hopes up...
  12. Flavia Gemina

    So, what are you watching lately?

    The final episode of The Sopranos aired last night here in the UK. I thought it was a brilliant finale, a suitable climax to a superb series. You can read my whole review HERE, along with the latest dozen films I've seen below. Has anyone seen The Last Legion yet? Is there a thread?
  13. Flavia Gemina

    Roman Statue Found in Bulgaria

    *cough* No comment I like the wording: This is the first statue from Ancient Rome, exposed in the Kurdjali History Museum. And the boy was obviously a 'leg man'!
  14. Flavia Gemina

    Uppity Female Mortals

    I call my iPod 'Darth iPod'. He's black and shiny.
  15. Flavia Gemina

    Discovery Of Osiris

    Do you have a reference for that ceremony, Ursus? Preferably a primary source? Thanks!
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