NORTH STAFFS BRANCH OF THE CLASSICAL ASSOCIATION

Annual Report for 2019/20

In what has proved to be a very unusual year, brought to an untimely and early end by the Coronavirus Lockdown, we had begun very encouragingly.

As the Treasurer reports elsewhere, our financial position has not changed much during the year, but we did show a small surplus on the shortened programme, and would probably have at least broken even, as intended, if we had not been so rudely interrupted. We have again maintained our membership numbers, with 56 paid up members, but a couple who did not have the opportunity to pay during the year who we hope will still do so. We were again successful in this shortened year in maintaining the higher attendances reported in the last few years, and in continuing to attract engaging and interesting speakers.

In the Autumn we opened in late October with a lecture, as we always prefer to do, this time by John Taylor (Manchester), on Ancient Odysseys, at Stoke 6th Form College (attendance a very pleasing 29). In we had a reading in translation of Iliad VI at Keele Common Room (attendance the best for a reading for some time, 12). Late in November we met again at Keele for a talk by David Smith (Liverpool) on Minoan Crete: Arthur Evans' Legacy & Beyond, the Hellenic Society Joint Meeting (attendance 34).

We resumed in February with Andrew Poulter (Birmingham)'s lecture at Keele on Trajan's Conquest of Dacia, the Roman Society Joint Meeting (attendance 26). In early March we had a reading from Ovid's Metamorphoses. This was just before Lockdown, at Keele (attendance 5, all Committee members, and the last time we saw each other face to face). We were to have concluded the lecture programme in late March with Tom Phillips (Manchester) on Picturing Ovid: Myth in Art but were forced to postpone this, we hope to a date later this year.

We are grateful to the College and to Keele SCR for free use of the rooms for these meetings.

Our annual trip, in May, was to have been to Aldborough Roman Town, York and Towton, but of course also had to be postponed. It is intended to offer this trip, with possibly a slightly different itinerary, in May 2021.

The Latin and Greek reading groups continued successfully to run approximately monthly until March, independently of the core programme, as did the two Beginners' Latin Groups, thanks to Nigel Coulton, who again took responsibility for all our language work. Members of the reading groups opted not to try and hold Zoom meetings after Lockdown, but we await their resumption once they can again meet in private houses.


Events 2019/2020

LECTURE: Dr John Taylor (University of Manchester)

'ANCIENT ODYSSEYS: THE JOURNEYS OF ULYSSES AND AENEAS'
7.30 p.m., Thursday 24 October 2019,
Stoke on Trent Sixth Form College, Leek Road, Stoke on Trent, ST4 2RU

READING: (in English translation) of Homer's Iliad Book VI

7.30 p.m., Thursday 7 November 2019,
University Common Room, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG

      Roman Theatre, Orange, ? Stephen Clifford, June 2004 The Roman Theatre at Orange.

Texts will be available, & details will be advised near the date

LECTURE: Dr David Smith (University of Liverpool)

'MINOAN CRETE - ARTHUR EVANS' LEGACY & BEYOND' - illustrated
7.30 p.m., Tuesday 26 November 2019,
University Common Room, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG
Joint meeting with the Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies

LECTURE: Professor Andrew Poulter (Universities of Birmingham & Nottingham)

'TRAJAN'S CONQUEST OF DACIA - TRAJAN'S COLUMN AND THE MONUMENTS AT ADAMKLISSI'
7.30 p.m., Tuesday 18 February 2020,
University Common Room, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG
Joint meeting with the Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies

READING: (in English translation) of excerpts from Ovid's Metamorphoses

7.30 p.m., Tuesday 10 March 2020,
University Common Room, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG

Texts will be available, & details will be advised near the date

LECTURE: Dr Tom Phillips (University of Manchester) - POSTPONED TO NEXT YEAR'S PROGRAMME

'PICTURING OVID - MYTH IN ART'
7.30 p.m., Thursday 26 March 2020
University Common Room, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG

ANNUAL COACH TRIP, Saturday 2 May 2020: Aldborough Roman Town, parts of York & the Towton Battlefield - POSTPONED TO 2021

Led as usual by Dr Andy Fear. Departing from Keele at 8.00 a.m., with time for individual exploration also in the city. There is a charge for this event, payable with bookings,.which this year we again have to ask to be paid in advance (minimum 25 pounds), to ensure the cost of the coach will be fully met.

Annual General Meeting

The
AGM will be held at 7.30 pm on Friday 24th July 2020, by Zoom. A link to join the meeting has been emailed to members, or contact the Secretary.

Latin and Greek Reading Groups 2019/20

Greek A Greek Reading Group meets at a private house on Keele campus every four weeks or so, generally on a midweek morning. The group has been reading texts from the Perseus Digital Library. Next meeting Postponed for now during Covid19 Emergency. When we resume the meeting will be at 10.30 a.m., in a member's house on Keele campus, when the Group will be reading Ancient Greek Epigrams ed. C.T.Hadavas ISBN 9781727440225, p56ff, Callimachus 18. Some prior knowledge of Greek is required, but the atmosphere is relaxed and support is provided.

Latin The Latin Reading Group also meets about monthly, usually on a weekday morning on the second Monday of the month, on Keele campus. The next meeting will be in a private house on Keele campus, and Postponed for now during Covid19 Emergency. When we resume the meeting will be at at 10.00 a.m. and the group will continue reading selections of Ovid's Metamorphoses, beginning the Pyramus & Thisbe story (Jones page 130). and will also be looking at the Nuntii Latini news from Radio Helsinki, which is updated every Friday. Members may also like to listen to the news in Latin (pronounced like Italian) on Vatican Radio - Google Hebdomada Papae.

For further details of both groups, or for anyone new wishing to join the groups, please contact the organiser, Nigel Coulton, tel: 01782-615155, or email the Branch address below.

These groups are not for beginners: some prior knowledge of the relevant language is necessary to take part in either. For both, please ask the organiser if there is room in the group for more members before joining.

Beginners Latin from Scratch: a weekly Group is also now available, strictly limited to 5 members. Contact Nigel Coulton if interested. The group began its course on Tuesday mornings in March 2016. It now meets on Thursdays. This scratch group has now progressed too far to integrate further beginners, but Nigel has begun another one in 2018, which meets on Wednesdays at 7.00 pm.. Please let us (email below) know if you would be interested. The only requirement is that if not already a subscribing member you become one.

All welcome - all events except coach trips are free of charge

Information on Membership

Last year's programme and annual report

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