Short Course: Figureheads, Ship Badges and Silverware

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Event type: 
Date and time: 
25 February | 10.30am-4.30pm
National Maritime Museum, Seminar Room
Talks & courses

Day course delving into the classical myths portrayed in naval items by examining 19th century objects from the National Maritime Museum’s collection.

  • This course will look at the classical artworks that were available to artists in the 19th century and the literary works that were studied in schools and known to the general public.
  • You will learn to identify some of the Classical gods, heroes, mythical figures and historical characters used as figureheads and ship badges such as Achilles, Ajax, Atalanta, Caesar, Cleopatra, Coriolanus, Dido, Hercules, Leda, Minerva, Neptune, Orpheus and Penelope, before considering the myths surrounding them and reasons why they were chosen.
  • The course will provide an understanding of why figures from Greek and Roman myths were used by the Navy and appreciate the lasting appeal of Classical mythology.  
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