Rome: History, Place & Imagination

Rome as a metropolis, a political and religious centre, and a city which preserved, recreated and reinterpreted its past through monuments and architecture, art and literature, film and politics, remains a potent inspiration and a challenging model. Rome’s metaphorical and symbolic significance through its rise, fall, global reach, and religious centrality make it a continuously relevant example for other histories and practices.

The BSR supports research on Rome through lectures, conferences, publications and its acclaimed City of Rome postgraduate course.

Award-Holders since 2008


Marden Nichols (Cambridge) : The Odyssey frieze, a Roman wall-painting of the first century BCE considered in a spatial and cultural context
Jane Draycott (Nottingham): The gardens of Hygieia: the role of the Roman hortus in domestic medical practice
Claire Holleran (King’s, London): Shopping in ancient Rome
Kavita Ayer (Macquarie): (1) Poverty and identity in the Roman Republic; (2) Landscape and belonging in Republican Rome
Amy Russell (California at Berkeley): The transformation of public space in Republican and Augustan Rome
Elizabeth Munro (Oxford): Recycling the Roman villa: the use of architectural components as raw materials for small-scale production in the late Roman period
Ellen Westcott (Macquarie): (1) ‘Memoriae sacrum: commemorative practice on the sacred island; (2) The perception of images by the ordinary (non-élite) Roman viewer
Duncan Keenan-Jones (Macquarie): Water, society and environment in ancient Rome and its hinterland
Barbara Borg (Exeter): Tombs and the art of commemoration in second-century CE Rome
Susan Walker (Ashmolean, Oxford): Gold-glass, inscriptions and sarcophagi from the catacombs of Rome
Clare Rowan (Macquarie): 1. Building an emperor: Roman visions of imperial monuments; 2. ‘Under divine auspices’: patron deities and the visualization of imperial power in the Severan period
Caillan Davenport (Oxford): New élites in Rome and Italy, AD 235–337
Rebecca Usherwood (Nottingham): Unwriting usurpation: political memory culture in fourth-century Rome
Meaghan McEvoy (Oxford): The resurgence of Rome in the fifth century AD
Caroline Vout (Cambridge): Rome: city of seven hills

Middle Ages, Renaissance and Baroque

Peter Fane-Saunders (Warburg): The Septizonium and its architectural reception, c. 1459–1546
Michael Bury (Edinburgh): Divergent judgements: works of art in contention, Rome 1540–1610
Anita Sganzerla (Courtauld): Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione and the ‘Republic of Letters’ in Seventeenth-century Rome
Natacha Boucher: Piranesi’s architecture: metaphor in the constructive use of fragment
Tao Sule-DuFour: Projecting Piranesi’s Rome, toward the Savage Mind‘s natural world
John Robertson (Oxford): Sacred history and enlightenment history: Rome and Naples 1650–1750
Mark Shepheard (Melbourne): Musicians and artists at the court of Cardinal Pietro Ottoboni in Rome, 1689–1740
Dhwani Patel (King’s College London): Mirabilia Urbis Romae: classical topography and public ritual in late mediaeval Rome


Dominic Holdaway (Warwick): A return to cinema d’impegno – Contemporary cinematic engagements with organized crime
Alex Bremner (Edinburgh): G.E. Street in Rome: a Victorian architect and his churches

Selected Publications

Marden NICHOLS (Ralegh Radford Rome Scholar 2008–9) Contemporary perspectives on luxury building in second-century BC Rome. Papers of the British School at Rome 78 (2010): 39–62
Claire HOLLERAN (Rome Award 2008–9) Shopping in Ancient Rome: the Retail Trade in the Late Republic and the Principate (Oxford University Press, 2012).
Roslynne BELL (Rome Awardee2006–7) Revisiting the pediment of the Palatine metroön: a Vergilian interpretation. Papers of the British School at Rome 77 (2009): 65–100.
Caroline VOUT (Rome Scholar 1998–9; Hugh Last Fellow 2009–10) The Hills of Rome: Signature of an Eternal City (Cambridge University Press, 2012).
Stephen HEYWORTH (Hugh Last Fellow 2008–9) Roman topography and Latin diction. Papers of the British School at Rome 79 (2011): 43–70.
Clare ROWAN (Macquarie Gale Scholar 2009–10) The public image of Severan women. Papers of the British School at Rome 79 (2011): 241–74.
Jason MANDER (Rome Award 2006–7) Portraits of Children on Roman Funerary Monuments (Cambridge University Press 2012).
Caillan DAVENPORT (Rome Award 2008–9) Soldiers and equestrian rank in the third century AD. Papers of the British School at Rome 80 (2012): 89–124.
Robert COATES-STEPHENS (Rome Scholar; Cary Fellow) The Walls of Aurelian. In R. Behrwal and, C. Witschel (eds), Rom in der Spätantike: Historische Erinnerung im Städtischen Raum (Heidelberger Althistorische Beiträge und Epigraphische Studien 51) (Stuttgart, 2012), 83–109.
Meaghan MCEVOY (Rome Scholar 2008–9) Rome and the transformation of the imperial office in the late fourth–mid-fifth centuries AD. Papers of the British School at Rome 78 (2010): 151–92.
Miles PATTENDEN (Rome Scholar 2006–7) Governor and government in sixteenth-century Rome. Papers of the British School at Rome 77 (2009): 257–72.
Emiliano PERRA (Rome Fellow 2008–9) Conflicts of Memory: the Reception of Holocaust Films and TV Programmes in Italy, 1945 to the Present (Verlag Peter Lang, 2010).
J. BENCI (Assistant Director Fine Arts) Michelangelo’s Rome: towards an iconology of L’Eclisse, in Richard Wrigley (ed.), Cinematic Rome (Leicester 2008): 63-84.
J. BENCI (Assistant Director Fine Arts) ‘An extraordinary proliferation of layers’: Pasolini’s Rome(s), in Dorigen Caldwell, Lesley Caldwell (eds.), Rome: Continuing Encounters between Past and Present (Ashgate 2011): 151-86.
J. BENCI (Assistant Director Fine Arts) Identification of a city: Antonioni and Rome, 1940-1962, in John David Rhodes, Laura Rascaroli (eds.), Antonioni: Centenary Essays (London: 2011): 21-63.