Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Romanticism or Historical Realism

Romanticism or Historical Realism

Romantic history is an art perfected by many who very much try to give us a distorted account of what really happened. Talking about British traditions and British culture we have to be extremely careful not to fall ourselves into the trap of wanting to believe that the world we come from was perfect and ideal. In three words: It was not.

The concept of what was foreign and of what wasn’t foreign also changed and I tend to believe that people - I include myself - are blatantly unaware of what came before them and of their real roots.

For somebody like me, coming to London was the most natural thing to do since Rome created London about 50AD and the name of the city derives from a Celtic word: Londinios. Londinios actually meant ‘the place of the bold one’. On my father’s side, I am a Roman and on my mother’s side I am a Celt and I had to be really bold to join the British National Party. So you could say that all remains in the family, but who knows what else exists undetected. I traced my family roots and I find traces all the way from Sicily, Naples, Genoa, Corsica (birthplace of Napoleon Bonaparte), France and Germany.

The Romans built a bridge across the Thames and having decided that it was a good place to build a protected port, they then decided to build a town near the bridge. Despite Queen Boudicca’s rebellion in 61AD, Rome had some kind of control over London even after the Roman legions left Britain in 407AD. Roman London flourished and at one point was the most populous town in what we call today United Kingdom.

Being able to stand as London Mayoral Candidate was unexpected and was made possible by fortituous circumstances but there I was: a Roman standing for Mayor of London in 2012, a city created by the Roman Empire.

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