If you could travel back through time to any party, which would it be? They say Alexander the Great threw extravagant post-battle shindigs. Others say that the Sun King elevated the standards of leisure and luxury at Versaille. Or was it the disconcerting urgency of Napoleon’s coming that gave the Duchess of Richmond’s ball a particular electric atmosphere?

But imagine a Borgia-hosted banquet in St Peter’s, an occasion so decadent that it has been described as one of the most notorious feasts in European history; a fete so racy that it besmirched the social standing of a papal dynasty. That’s the sort of soiree that natural curiosity demands attendance to.