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Shrinking the kids

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Cheekiest attempt to rehabilitate an architectural figure is being made by Duane W Roller of Ohio State University, whose book The Building Programme of Herod the Great comes out next month. It details how King Herod was 'instrumental in the diffusion of the Augustan architectural revolution', using 'construction methods and decorative elements advanced for the time'. Herod is acknowledged as one of the world's great villains; on the other hand, 'this undeserved notoriety has overshadowed his actual achievements'.

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