Archaeomuse draws from decades of experience organising travel experiences of small and large groups to Italy, Greece and other locations in Europe.  Its director is an archaeologist, classicist and experienced teacher.

Antonio Leonardis

Antonio has had a passion for classics and archaeology since meeting his professor and mentor, Dr Alexander Gordon McKay, in the early-90s as a student at McMaster and York Universities in Canada. He combines lecturing and teaching with his ongoing archaeological studies focusing on the pre-Roman history of Southern Italy, the land of his ancestors. Throughout his 20 year teaching career, both in the USA and UK, he has led and inspired countless groups of students and enthusiasts alike in discovering ancient lands and cultures.

Since relocating permanently to the UK, Antonio has been able to continue his journey through the ages, settling in arguably one of the richest areas of British cultural heritage, the ancient Kingdom of Wessex.


Taras, son of Poseidon (powerful God of the Sea and nephew of Zeus, who fell in love with an unsuspecting river nymph somewhere west of Greece) founded the Greek colony of Taras, modern-day Taranto in the region of Puglia, south-east Italy. Being technically a ‘demi-God’, he effectively bridged the gap between the ancient Gods and modern Humankind.

He was deposited ashore by a dolphin, sent by his father to rescue him following a shipwreck. From that day forth the pair became inseparable, eternally immortalised in the coinage of the time.

Being of questionable parentage, Taras was frowned upon by his cousins, the Nine Muses, who devised a series of hoops for him to jump through for their own entertainment. Deeply inspired by them he was more than happy to oblige, traversing the world on his dolphin in his pursuit of satisfying their every whim, learning the ways of the world on his travels.

Skip forward a few thousand years and our dashing, modern-day Taras is highly intelligent and educated, yet remains an inquisitive and enthusiastic sponge, keen to accompany and inspire you – with the help of the nine Muses – on your travels.