A brief overview of the legendary and mythical history of the city and its empire, with links to all the articles in this series, and some of the finest paintings.
They painted many of their finest works late in their careers: Rembrandt became more painterly and gestural, using surface texture of paint, and Turner anticipated much of Impressionism.
Originally a marsh just outside the city’s walls, it came to be the heart of the city, a market, meeting place, and the political hub.
A saint banished to the island of Patmos, a history wound around a column, and a megalomaniac emperor strangled in his bath by a professional wrestler.
Mark Antony made a bid for power, and revealed his dark side, before defeat by Octavian. In 27 BCE, under the name Augustus, he became the first Emperor of Rome.
With Umberto Eco as our guide, explore Parnassus, the Garden of Earthly Delights, Alcina’s island, Colchis, and the Garden of the Hesperides.
Hannibal crossed the Alps, but the Romans adopted guerrilla tactics before being defeated at Cannae. Then Scipio invaded north Africa and destroyed the Carthaginians at Zama.
The Pyrrhic War, against the Greeks under Pyrrhus, left the Romans in charge of the whole of Italy. Then came the Carthaginians, who were beaten in the First Punic War.
Dutch Golden Age brandjes, West’s failure, fires in Venice and Copenhagen, and the rivals John Constable and JMW Turner painting London on fire.
Arthur battles the monster Orgoglio, eventually killing him. After the Redcrosse Knight is rescued, he ends up in the Cave of Despair, about to kill himself.