The Romans invaded Britain in 43 AD. Richborough Fort was their initial bridgehead, and became a stunning entry point for the next few centuries. In visiting the remains of this fort and then cultural hub, what struck me was the sophistication of Roman civilization. At least those aspects that did not involve people being fed to lions for entertainment.

The audio guide played a recorded scene imagining the Romans in the Richborough bath house. The senatorial and other seats of governance may have been the venues for polemic rhetoric, but the bath house was the environment for authentic conversation, where individuals interrogated their own beliefs and the views of others.

Nearly two millennia on, the Romans still have much to teach us about the art of cultural sophistication and engagement.