The Roman Baths

Bath Travel Blog

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The Roman Baths
Two days after moving into our new home in Brussels and we had our first house guest. My brother Russell was in town on his first European vacation and visited us in Belgium in between mountain biking in the French Alps and his whirlwind tour around Europe. It was really great to see him again and to share the new life that we have established here in Belgium, a life that Lydia and I have worked so hard for.

The one place that Russell wasn't going to see on his trip was the United Kingdom, so we decided to take him on a brief trip across England and Wales. We caught the train from Midi to St Pancreas, two hours from our house to the centre of London, meet up with our good friends Luke and Shyla and drove out of the big smoke.

Our first stop was in Bath, to see the stunning 18th century Georgian architecture and the ancient Roman Baths.
The Roman Baths
It was a really beautiful city to wander around, surprisingly lively, stunningly picturesque in the warm evening light and oddly maritime with the squawk of seagulls overhead. Out the front of the Roman Baths were large and peculiar statues ("Minotaur and Lady-Hare Torsos" by Sophie Ryder) under constant video surveillance, with posters up praising the people who knocked them down at Easter as a public service against hideous public art.

The Roman Baths themselves were really very interesting. They have been in constant use and redesign, with everyone from the Romans onwards taking advantage of the geothermal hot spring that wells up under Bath. It was quite hard to tell where genuine Roman architecture stopped and imitation classical architecture began. For me the most interesting part were the Roman artifacts that had been dredged up from the site, such as the engraved signet stones that had fallen out from Roman rings when the heat of the bath melted the wax holding them in, or the foul curses cast against petty crimes that were thrown into the temple spring in a wish for revenge ("Docimedis perdidit manicilia dua qui illas  involavit ut mentes suas perdat et oculos suos in fano ubi destinat", roughly "Docimedis has lost two gloves.
Sculptures in Bath
He asks that the person who has stolen them should lose his minds and his eyes in the temple where she appoints").

We had nice Thai for dinner with a truly disgusting organic cider, then drove onwards to Ross-on-Wye.
travelfan1963 says:
Congratulations on your feature!
Posted on: Jul 29, 2009
Koralifix says:
Congrats on today's feature! Very nice job!
Posted on: Jul 29, 2009
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The Roman Baths
The Roman Baths
The Roman Baths
The Roman Baths
Sculptures in Bath
Sculptures in Bath
The Cathedral of Bath
The Cathedral of Bath
The Roman Baths
The Roman Baths
The Cathedral at Bath
The Cathedral at Bath
Bath
photo by: Hummingbird