Roman-Celtic Britain Assembly
Unit 6A: Why have people invaded and settled in Britain in the past? A Roman Case Study.
1. One More Bites the Dust – Queen (as children file in).
Welcome to our class assembly about Barmy Brits and Ruthless Romans. It is set around 2000 years ago, in AD 43, when life in Britain was …, well .., (looking at Celts) a little wilder than it is today.
(Banner raised over Celtic group: ROUGH AND READY)
(Celtic tribes fighting each other, bears and wolves roaming around the stage).
By contrast, Rome was the centre of fine, sophisticated living and was doing its best to spread its idea of civilisation to the rest of the world.
(Banner raised over Roman group: CIVILISED AND SOPHISTICATED)
Roman senator: (addressing polite audience of men: 4 soldiers and a woman)
Friends, Romans and Countrymen, lend me thine ears.
However, (draws breath) Emperor Tiberius Claudius Drusus Nero Germanicus (stops, panting). Oh, how about we just call him Claudius? He did take a little convincing when it came to …Britannia.
Scene 1 ROME (Reasons for invasion)
(Roman Emperor Claudius and one of his generals, with servant (one of soldiers) standing to one side).
(Pointing to map of the world/extent of Roman Empire).
Yes, GGGGGeneral. You wanted to sssssee me about …..
Oh, didn’t I mention, he had a stammer.
Now let’s see if I can find it … ah yes, this little island BBBBritannia. Now, given that us RRRRomans control all this (pointing to globe) .. tell me why we should want this dreary little pppplace (..I hear the weather is apppppalling).
Cut! Not you, you simpleton. Just the Emperor!
Ssssorry. It’s kinda ccccatching. Anyway, reasons for conquering Britannia. One, you’ll get rich – there’s excellent farmland, lots of metal mines and loads of taxes to be collected. Two, they’re a pretty rough lot living there, call themselves Celts, always fighting each other, so they should be a pushover to conquer, and then we can turn them into slaves. Three, the great Julius Caesar (Claudius looks put out) failed to conquer this island, so just think how much the army would look up to you – the world’s greatest general.
Hmmmm. I think you’re right. (Turns to servant) Go pppack my bag…and don’t forget my umbrella …..and my bed socks – the ones with the little pppink elephants on.
Scene 3 Celtic Home (Comparison of Celtic and Roman life
(Celtic family sitting around fire)
1. WALK ON THE WILD SIDE
Mum (sitting, running nit comb through girl’s hair):
I hear the Romans are coming. There’s been much talk of how differently they live in Rome – in fine buildings made from bricks, concrete and marble…. A bit different from our little round huts, made from wattle and daub. I bet they don’t cook, eat and sleep in one room … and don’t get these horrible flies (flicking them away).
Aye, but I hear they’re nothing like as fierce in battle (paints face with blue paint and spikes up hair, before running round room yelling battle cry). And they don’t let their woman choose who she wants to marry.
Mum:(muttering under breath)
Soooo, …. We’re not allowed to change our minds, once we’re married! (looking at husband).
Girl: (wistfully, prancing round as a lady holding out pretend gown, curtseying etc) :
Oh, but just think how beautiful the Roman women must look in their long flowing gowns…
Yeah, and how much better the soldiers are kitted out with their fine body armour and glistening weapons. I mean, what good are a pair of tartan trousers, a spear and shield (pointing at Dad) against
(Dazed soldier staggers on. Dog growls quietly)
…well, this magnificent fighting machine.
(Dazed soldier stops, looks puzzled)
What? Me? (Straightens up proudly as boy identifies each part of his body armour and weaponry).
Boy: (pointing to each in turn)
Proper body armour including helmet, plus sword, dagger and javelins – to say nothing of all the training the Roman soldiers have had. Running as fast as you can and yelling loudly (demonstrated by Dad) are hardly going to frighten such deadly killing machines as this
(points to soldier, who nods and struts around. Dog starts barking wildly, at which soldier screams, throwing arms up in the air in terror and then runs for his life).
Well, maybe with the odd exception.
Dad (looking at own battle gear and looking put out):
Ok, but what about those weird gods they worship? They have a god or goddess for almost everything
(Children with pics/dressed up come forward for each)
They call the god and goddess of war, Mars and Minerva.
(2 strut aggressively across stage, waving weapons menacingly)
The goddess of love, Venus.
(Wraps arms around Dad, Mum fights her off)
The goddess of the moon and hunting, Diana
(Child carrying moon shape, while Diana chases him with bow and arrow)
The god of the sea, Neptune.
( Trails fish across on end of fishing rod)