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Secrets of Lost Empires

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This site, produced by Bill Thayer and hosted by the University of Chicago, is an exhaustive resource on Roman antiquity. Read Frontinus' essay on the aqueducts of Rome, wander the geography of Claudius Ptolemy, or have a look at 19th-century maps of the Roman Empire.

The Romans
Elementary school students and their teachers may enjoy this BBC-produced site. You can investigate Roman history by reading about topics that include technology, leisure and education. Take the interactive quiz to test your knowledge.

Rome: Republic to Empire
Barbara McManus, a professor at the College of New Rochelle, has created a site on the history and culture of Ancient Rome. Check out her article and photographs on baths and bathing in ancient Rome.

The Roman Aqueducts and Water Systems
Bowdoin College's Professor James Higginbotham and alumnus Jason Moyer have compiled a series of interesting essays and illustrations about individual Roman aqueducts.

Ancient Roman Recipes
This site offers a dozen recipes from "De Re Coquinaria" by the ancient Roman chef Marcus Gavius Apicius. Try your hand at making Isicia Omentata (Roman burgers) or Vitellina Frictia (fried veal).

National Engineers Week, February 20-26, 2000
The National Engineers Week Committee unveils plans for its 49th meeting which include numerous activities to showcase new projects and programs intended to spread the message of engineering's importance to society. The site also provides adolescents with an opprtunity to investigate a host of engineering achievements designed to inspire their interest in engineering.

Mysteries of Lost Empires By Marshall Jon Fisher and David E. Fisher. Channel 4 Books, London: April, 2000.
This companion book to NOVA's "Secrets of Lost Empires" series describes each of five projects in the series, including "Rainbow Bridge," "Roman Bath," "Medieval Siege," "Pharaoh's Obelisk," and "Easter Island." It gives the history of each ancient people, the mystery surrounding their archaeological achievement, the story of other scientists who have tried to explain it and failed, and the day-to-day drama of the NOVA teams' attempts to recreate the feat.

The book's emphasis on culture and technological difficulties, as well as the problem-solving and teamwork involved in overcoming them, will thrill readers eager to learn more about the subjects in the series.

Secrets of Lost Empires: Reconstructing the Glories of Ages Past By Michael Barnes. Sterling Publishing: 1997.
The companion book to the first NOVA "Secrets of Lost Empires" series explores how great civilizations of the past were able to build five wonders of the ancient world - Stonehenge, the Pyramids, Egyptian obelisks, the Colosseum, and the Inca monuments - without modern technology.

Guide to the Aqueducts of Ancient Rome By Peter Aicher. Wauconda, Illinois: Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, Inc., 1995.
Peter Aicher served as the aqueduct expert for NOVA's "Secrets of Lost Empires: Roman Bath" documentary (see Watering Ancient Rome). Here, Aicher describes how the aqueducts operated and also provides field guide information on Roman aqueducts for anyone wanting to explore Rome's aqueduct ruins.

The Book of the Bath By Francoise De Bonneville. NY, NY: Rizolli International Publications, Inc., 1997.
This book is a popular review of bathing that discusses both ancient bathing rituals and modern ones. The book is full of wonderful paintings and photographs representing baths today and also showing what they might have looked like throughout history.

Bathing in Public in the Roman World By Garrett Fagan. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1999.
Garrett Fagan was part of the NOVA team that built a Roman bath in Turkey. In this book, he explores the Roman bathing experience from a historical, social, and cultural perspective rather than from a technological or architectural one. The book, full of classical references, is a wonderful way to understand what a trip to the baths was like in ancient Rome.

As the Romans Did By Jo-ann Shelton. New York: Oxford University Press Inc., 1998.
This book is a wonderful introduction to the Romans that includes excerpts from many of the ancient texts. It covers all aspects of Roman life, including family life, housing, education, entertainment, religion and more.

What Life Was Like When Rome Ruled The World By the Editors of Time-Life books, Alexandria, Virginia.
This book for younger people includes many illustrations, providing a real flavor of what it was like to live in the Roman Empire.

Baths and Bathing in Classical Antiquity By Fikret Yegül. New York: The Architectural History Foundation, 1992.
Fikret Yegül, the primary designer of the NOVA Roman bath, has written a comprehensive book about ancient baths. Professor Yegül has traveled all over the world to create this comprehensive study of the baths of antiquity.

Secrets of Lost Empires Family Activity Book by WGBH Boston's Educational Print and Outreach Department.
Kids ages 9-12 and their families can explore the once-mighty civilizations featured in the Secrets of Lost Empires series with this fully illustrated, 32-page book. Just $4.95 to cover shipping and handling. Call 1-800-949-8670 or write to: WGBH Boston Video, P.O. Box 2284, South Burlington, VT 05407-2284.

Special Thanks
Peter Aicher
Garrett Fagan
Nancy Linde
Fikret Yegül

Lauren Aguirre, Senior Producer
Molly Frey, Technologist
Dennis Gaffney, Producer
Rick Groleau, Hot Science Developer
Karen Hartley, Classroom Resources Developer
Tyler Howe, Assistant Designer
Brenden Kootsey, Technologist
Chesley Lowe, Illustrator
Rob Meyer, Production Assistant
Carla Raimer, Associate Producer
Dan Scollard, Hot Science Technologist
Peter Tyson, Producer
Annie Valva, Director of Technology
Anya Vinokour, Senior Designer

A Day at the Baths | Construct an Aqueduct | Watering Ancient Rome
NOVA Builds a Bath | Real Roman Recipes | Resources | Transcript

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