Natalie Haynes Stands Up for the Classics: Series 5-8
- More Comical Tales from Ancient Greece and Rome
- Narrated by: Natalie Haynes
- Length: 7 hrs and 30 mins
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Four more series of Natalie Haynes' BBC Radio 4 show taking a comic look at the ancient world
Author, broadcaster and 'rock star classicist' Natalie Haynes is a little bit obsessive about Ancient Greece and Rome. In these four series, she explores some of the most prominent historical and mythological figures from the classical world, telling their stories through a mix of stand-up comedy and conversation.
Series 5 asks how much Aristotle knew about elephants' tongues and bivalves on Lesbos; introduces us to Claudia Severa and other Roman-British women; and investigates Suetonius - biographer of the Caesars—and why Augustus used hot nuts to soften the hair on his thighs. Natalie also recounts the original epic story of Homer's The Iliad from memory (complete with magic bra and a very sulky Achilles).
In Series 6, Natalie stands up for Helen of Troy (expect new insights into feathery sex); Penthesilea, Amazon warrior queen, (with a natty line in ankle boots); Eurydice (chased by a sex pest and killed by a snake on her wedding day); and Penelope (lots of suitors, but fortunately an adept weaver).
Natalie also discusses Medusa, beloved sister and mother (but a hairdresser's nightmare); gives us the lowdown on Pandora (she of the box, which turns out to be a jar); tells the story of Jocasta (still spellbindingly shocking today); and asks whether Clytemnestra was the worst wife in Greek mythology (she murdered her husband, but was a good mother).
Guests include Dr Adam Rutherford, Professor Edith Hall, Professor Llewelyn Morgan, Dr Paul Roberts, Anita Anand, and Chris Riddell.
Presented by Natalie Haynes
Music by Sarah Gabriel and Sarah Angliss
Produced by Mary Ward-Lowery
Special guests: Dr Adam Rutherford, Professor Edith Hall, Professor Llewelyn Morgan, Dr Paul Roberts, Anita Anand, and Chris Riddell
First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 23 December 2019-13 January 2020 (Series 5), 17 May-7 June 2020 (Series 6), 18 May-8 June 2021 (Series 7), 13 September-4 October 2022 (Series 8)