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Rome, September 2011

Posted by: Will Wootton 10 years, 8 months ago

We are currently in Rome finishing off the first series of full interviews with Peter Rockwell. Over three weeks we've managed to discuss nearly 1,000 slides and collect more than 20 hours of audio and video recordings. Highlights include the nearly 500 close-up shots of the Column of Trajan that Peter took during the restoration of the monument in the 1980s. It's phenomenal to see just how detailed the carving on this impressive monument really is; even over 20 m above the ground the individual toenails of the figures, each no more than 3-4 mm long, are precisely finished.

Here are some examples of the most remarkable details:

The leaves of a tree, in front of a passing Dacian, carved in the round on Spiral 10c, nearly half way up the Column.

The carefully modelled knee of an auxiliary even higher up, on Spiral 11d.

The remarkably detailed sandal straps and toenails of two legionaries on Spiral 16c, two-thirds of the way up the Column.

We have enough data now to keep us going till the end of December at least but we will be back in Rome to resume our interviews with Peter in the new year.