Pompeii's forum - artist's reconstruction 2.jpg
An artist's impression of the forum in Pompeii, prior to the eruption of AD 79. The Temple of Jupiter is in the background, with Mount Vesuvius looming behind it.


The HSC Ancient History Course requires you to study four topics: Each is worth 25% of the HSC total mark.
  • The core study is Cities of Vesuvius, which looks at Pompeii and Herculaneum, two Roman towns that were destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. Because they were buried by falling ash rather than swept away by lava, they are amazingly well preserved. They provide a unique insight into life in the Roman Empire in the first century AD. We will spend all of first term doing Cities of Vesuvius.
  • The historical period you will be studying is the Greek World from 500 to 440 BC. This involves looking at the Persian invasions of Greece in 490 and 480 BC, then the Delian League, which essentially became an Athenian Empire. We will spend most of second term doing this topic.
  • You also have to study a personality from a historical period. This year we will be studying the Great King of Persia, Xerxes, whose army invaded Greece in 480 BC. This will fit in nicely with our study of the Greek World from 500 to 440 BC. We will spend the last part of second term doing this topic.
  • Finally, you have to study an ancient society. This year we will be looking at Spartan Society to the Battle of Leuctra in 371 BC. We will spend most of third term term doing this topic.

In class we will be looking at ancient sources. These include ancient texts, pictures, statues, engravings, coins, etc. We will also be looking at documentaries, as well as using information from textbooks. You will be set work to do each week and will be expected to have this completed for the following week's class. The last hour of each Thursday class will be devoted to homework, so if you organise your time well, you should be able to get a lot of your homework done in class.

Don't hesitate to contact me if you are having problems with the course, I am at work five days a week, and always leave my door open when I am in the office. You can collect your reading materials on flash drive from my office - either from me or my clerical assistant Marta. My contact details are below.

Ken Enderby
Head Teacher, Foundation Skills.
Room J1.05
Tel: 9780 5588.


You can download the HSC Ancient History assessment schedule by clicking on


Click on the following links to see what we have been doing in class, and to get the handouts from each lesson:
  1. Introduction
  2. Cities of Vesuvius
  3. The Greek World, 500 - 440 BC
  4. Personality study: Xerxes
  5. Spartan Society to the Battle of Leuctra, 371BC

HSC exams

Click on HSC exam study guides to get tips for this years exam.