Boris Johnson Roman Quiz results

Boris Johnson Roman Quiz results.

He says:

As several entrants all achieved full marks, the winners were chosen according to whoever had submitted the fullest entries.

€20 million for Nimes amphitheatre

The Times

As the evening sun caught the upper tier of the world’s best preserved Roman amphitheatre, Thierry Algrin cast a worried glance at the white streaks running down the 2,000-year-old stones.

To the untrained eye they looked insignificant, but to the architect in charge of France’s historic monuments they spelt danger for a building that offers a unique insight into antiquity. After surviving an incalculable number of adventures, the gladiatorial arena in Nîmes, southern France, is starting to crumble as water seeps into its stones and mortar, he told The Times.

Mr Algrin is responsible for saving the stadium, which witnessed the deaths of Christians and lions during the Roman Empire before becoming a bullfighting ring and occasional concert venue in recent times.

“It would be unthinkable to leave such a magnificent building to fall into ruin,” he said, turning his gaze to the scaffolding which marked the start, last week, of the most recent attempt to restore the arena. Seventy per cent of the original structure is still intact – and Mr Algrin must ensure that it survives for centuries more, at the same time preserving its soul and letting the concerts and bullfights continue.

It is no easy task, even if the French authorities have agreed to funding of up to €20 million (£18 million). This should pay for renovation of the exterior, 21m (69ft) high, but not for the interior of the 14,000-capacity stadium. Doubts over France’s commitment to the project stem from its record. Twice in the past two centuries officials have ordered the restoration of the arena, only to abandon the work before it was finished – and Jean-Paul Fournier, the Mayor of Nîmes, was quoted recently in the local press as saying that the latest renovation could take 40 years.

Mr Algrin is more optimistic. “It shouldn’t take that long,” he said. “I am confident that it will be completed this time because there is a real consensus now that something must be done. We can’t just walk away.”

The amphitheatre, which was built between 90AD and 120AD – about the same time as the Colosseum in Rome – brought Roman sport to the area. When the Roman Empire crumbled in the 5th century the arena was preserved by the Visigoths, who turned it into a fort and transformed it into a self-contained town over the next 1,000 years.

By the 18th century the arena was home to several hundred families, a château and two churches. Officials who decided to clear it out and begin the first restoration unwittingly began the process of deterioration, Mr Algrin said. “This seems to be speeding up. The question is why is this happening now, when the building has been there for 2,000 years? The only explanation is that the houses in the amphitheatre from the 6th to the 18th centuries kept the water off.”

Now, he says, the sand and lime mortar that holds the stones together is being dissolved by rain – hence the streaks of white. Some of the stones are cracking and a few of the lintels are breaking up.

His aim is to reinforce the building while replacing as little of the original structure as possible. The second phase – if money is made available – will involve the installation of seating, which would provide protection against water infiltration.

Rubgy players photographed as Romans in Gloucester

This is Gloucestershire

Rugby stars have swapped the touchline for togas to help promote Gloucester.

Winger Iain Balshaw and centre Anthony Allen have donned Roman centurions’ helmets to join two models in a photo shoot to celebrate their adopted city.

The pair dressed up for a marketing campaign to promote Gloucester as a major tourism, leisure and retail destination in the South West.

Stunning shots of the England internationals will now be blown up into posters to fill the windows of empty shops in the city centre.

The snaps, which also feature professional models Cassie Odqvist and Rochelle Wood were shot in the Eastgate Street Roman ruins.

The scheme is the brainchild of Graham Walker, CEO of Marketing Gloucester Ltd, the organisation set up to sell the city to the world.

He said it was great to have the support of Gloucester Rugby.

“Iain and Anthony’s involvement has a special relevance as the Gloucester rugby ground at Kingsholm sits on the site of a Roman fort founded around AD48,” said Graham.

A Muslim view of the Romans

Radiance Weekly announces itself as A credible and moderate voice of Millat. Classics teachers may find it useful to know how the Romans look to some Muslims.

Between the Devil and the Deep Sea

SOROOR AHMED analyses the pre-election scenario, and taking guidance from the Holy Qur�an advises Muslim leaders to keep in mind the long term interest of the community, and not to allow the communal forces gain strength.
“Alif Lam Mim. The Romans have been defeated. In the nearer land, and they, after their defeat will be victorious. Within 10 years – Allah’s is the command in the former case and in the latter – and in that day believers will rejoice, in Allah’s help to victory. He helps to victory whom He will. He is the Mighty, the Merciful. It is a promise of Allah.” 
Like in many places the first six verses of Surah Al-Rum give political training to the followers of Islam. But unfortunately many of us are unable to make out anything from them.
It talks about the battle between the Romans and the Persians, in which the latter triumphed. This victory of the Persians was celebrated by the pagans of Makkah as, in their opinion, the Zoroastrian Persians were ideologically closer to them. By that equation the Muslims were sympathetic towards the Christian Romans, who were at least the followers of Jesus Christ, the last Prophet before Muhammad (peace be to them).
The above verses make two prophecies. They said that in the next few (less than 10) years the Romans “after their defeat will be victorious” and “in that day believers will rejoice.”
The Persians defeated the Romans in 613-15 C.E. The Romans lost Syria, Palestine, Egypt and a large part of modern Turkey. However, as per the Qur’anic prophecy, the equation changed and the Christian Romans took revenge in 624 C.E. And when the news of the victory came, the Muslims were really rejoicing after their own triumph in the Battle of Badr in 2 Hijri (2 A.H.).
It needs to be made very clear that apparently the Romans were no less dangerous to Islam. Their empire was not only confined just north to Arabia; but even across the Red Sea in the west where a Christian ruler was in power. Even in the South, that is Yemen, it was the Christians who were posing problems to the Muslims. Only 50 days before the birth of Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless and greet him) a Christian army from South led by General Abraha invaded Makkah with the view to attacking and destroying (God forbid) Ka’aba. However, their army was destroyed by pebbles dropped by a flock of birds (See Surah Al-Feel).
Character-wise too, the Roman Emperor Hercules was a corrupt person. Still the sympathy of the Muslims was tilted towards the Romans because in the larger context their victory was good for the nascent and growing Islamic society. However, when Islam really grew powerful, it had to take on both the Christian Romans and the Zoroastrian Persians as they both started seeing it as a challenge.
Here we have been asked to choose between the two evils. In today’s context we have to choose between the two political parties or alliances. The policy should not always be the same, but you will have to understand as to who is more dangerous for the larger cause of humanity. If between the erstwhile Communist Soviet Union and Capitalist United States Muslims opted for the latter; it was not out of love for it. Mind it the Americans always espoused the cause of the Zionist occupants of Al-Aqsa yet we for a moment were soft towards them.
Similarly, if Muslims voted for the UPA and not NDA, it is simply because of the political strategy. In fact all the right thinking groups or communities throw their weight behind the party which supports their cause.</blockquote

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