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Margaret George Author

Margaret George writes biographical novels about outsized historical characters: Henry VIII, Mary Queen of Scots, Cleopatra, Mary Magdalene, Helen of Troy, and Elizabeth I. and Emperor Nero. All eight of her novels have been New York Times bestsellers, and the Cleopatra novel was made into an Emmy-nominated ABC-TV miniseries. Her two books on the Roman Emperor Nero have been adapted into a BARDEUM experience for the Circus Maximus in Rome.

Margaret George is a rolling stone who has lived in many places, beginning her traveling at the age of four when her father joined the U.S. diplomatic service and was posted to a consulate in Taiwan. The family traveled on a freighter named after Ulysses’ son Telemachus that took thirty days to reach Taiwan, where they spent two years. Following that they lived in Tel Aviv (and visited other places in the Middle East), Bonn and Berlin (during the spy-and-Cold-War days) before returning to Washington D.C.


Adapted from

Combining the magic of history, travel and storytelling by allowing visitors to not just see the sites, but step inside their stories. 

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"Ancient world goddess Margaret George's gossipy Roman guide takes us on a fun and informative tour so immersive you'll be looking over your shoulder for the emperor and passionately cheering for imaginary chariot teams as the golden dolphins fall to a surprise ending."

Stephanie Dray, New York Times bestselling author of Lily of the Nile & America's First Daughter


“The Charioteer will have you breathing the dust, feeling the marble, hearing the whinny and stamp of horses, and joining the roar of the crowd as if you'd been transported by a time machine. 


Download the BARDEUM app for your next trip to Rome!”

Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Huntress, The Rose Code and Empress of Rome Saga

Margaret George takes visitors to the Circus Maximus in Rome back in time to the year 64 AD and the reign of Emperor Nero. On the last day of the festival of Ceres, the stadium is at capacity. The crowd gathers to enjoy the chariot races, but many in attendance are hopeful to see the Emperor who has not been seen much in public since the devastating fire that destroyed two thirds of Rome the previous year. Nero has been rebuilding it at a furious pace, and the Circus was one of his top priorities.  


Come, find your seat, and immerse yourself in a day of chariot racing and learn of the real life plot to assassinate the Emperor on this last day of the festival. Our audio / visual self-guided tour of the Circus Maximus - The Charioteer is written by six-time New York Times bestselling author Margaret George (Splendor in the Dark, Confessions of a Young Nero) and narrated by George Blagden (Versailles, Vikings). The experience includes digital reconstructions of the Circus Maximus. 

The Charioteer an audio and visual tour of the Circus Maximus in Rome written by Margaret George and narrated by George Blagden

The year is 65 AD and the controversial Emperor Nero has spared no expense to fulfill his promise to the people of Rome. The Circus Maximus has been rebuilt following the great fire and is now the most impressive track ever constructed.  While this endears Nero to charioteering fans, discontent grows among the Senators over his frivolous spending.

Follow along with our intrepid chaperon, Appius Teretina, as he guides you through these true events on the final day of the festival of Ceres. Place bets on your favorite Charioteer team and find out if the Blues, Reds, Whites or the Emperor’s favored Greens, carry the day! 

And, if you’re lucky, the Emperor himself will appear before the final race of the day. You’ll discover that even amongst civil unrest and treasonous plots of murder, the show must go on!

Learn about the Circus Maximus, chariot racing, and the real-life murderous plot against Emperor Nero as you Step Inside the Story of The Charioteer.

Margaret George Author



New York Times, Wall Street Journal and London Times bestselling author of eight historical novels.

George Blagden_2x_edited.jpg



Actor best known for his roles as King Louis XIV in Versailles, the monk Athelstan in Vikings and Grantaire in Les Miserables.  


The Autobiography of Henry VIII:

"It doth brim with lust, violence, cruelty and living conservation...Margaret George has found a new and fresh way to tell the story. -- Detroit Free Press

Mary Queen of Scotland and the Isles

"The best kind of historical novel, one the reader can't wait to get lost in." --San Francisco Chronicle

"A painstakingly researched novel that makes history live. The author's deep sympathy for her subject renders Mary an entirely real and unforgettable heroine." --Publishers Weekly (starred)

The Memoirs of Cleopatra:


“[A] time machine...It's as if you lived there, walked the streets and counseled the Queen throughout her turbulent life.” ―Cincinnati Enquirer

“George is such a skilled writer the book seems built no the intimate details of the five senses” ―Memphis Commercial Appeal

“Readers looking to be transported to another place and time will find their magic carpet here.” ―Publishers Weekly"

Mary Called Magdalene:


“The premise of Ms. George’s novel is intriguing...With rigorous research, [she] paints the landscape and rituals of Judea.”—The New York Times

“[An] expansive, thoughtful novel.”—San Francisco Chronicle


Helen of Troy:


“The face that launched a thousand ships has sparked a scintillating historical novel.”—Chicago Tribune

Elizabeth I:


“Deeply engaging, it sets a new benchmark for the genre.”—New York Times bestselling author Alison Weir

“A rare unfusty take on the Virgin Queen.”—Vogue

Confessions of A Young Nero:


“[George] brilliantly recreates past eras and bygone civilizations.”—Sharon Kay Penman, author of A King’s Ransom
“A wonderful novel, from the riveting first scene to the breathtaking finale.” —Jennifer Chiaverini, New York Times bestselling author of Fates and Traitors and Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker 


The Splendor Before the Dark: A Novel of the Emperor Nero


 “A resplendent novel filled with the gilt and marble of the ancient world.”—C. W. Gortner, author of The Romanov Empress

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