The 6th Year Classics class visited the Classics Museum in UCD earlier this month, and experienced a wide range of Greek and Roman artefacts. The museum is one of the most impressive aspects of the School of Classics which is the largest centre of Classical Studies in Ireland.
In line with our study of Greek sculpture, we saw replicas of some of the sculptures we had studied in class, such as the Kritios Boy, an Early Classical sculpture that 6th Year Classics students are all too familiar with! The museum curator, Dr. Joanna Day, showed us collections of Greek vases, sculptures, and Greek and Roman coins, as well as a remarkable stone sarcophagus, and many tombstones – we saw one tombstone belonging to a thirty year old, and one belonging to a four year old, erected by a man for his “unfortunate granddaughter”!
The best part of the visit was when we sat down to handle some of the artefacts. Among the objects we looked at were a terracotta oil lamp, one of the first versions of money from the ancient world, and a small lekithos, which was an oil flask (we learned that almost every container from ancient Greece most likely held oil!). The visit was extremely interesting for us, as we got to bring our knowledge of the Classical world and apply it to the remnants we are left with today. It was a chance to get out of the classroom and see what's in our textbooks in real life!