jademermaid: (Pompeii snake)

The Pompeii exhibit was really beautiful. The dog above was the saddest thing for me. He died chained up to his master's house. It's just the way he is writhing like a snake in a campfire....well, it just made me sad.

They would not let anyone take pictures at the exhibit. Can you imagine? I was shocked. I guess it's so people would buy the book, but I was going to buy the book anyway! I also got a shirt.

Memorable artifacts for me:

Medusa floor mosaic. Medusa was a popular theme for protection, and there are lots of mosaics around, but this one was really nice, and I was able to get much closer to this one than the mosaics at the last exhibit. I liked her a lot, and dreamed of making one on my bathroom floor.

Unbelievable detailed silver and gold snake bracelet. They had lots of snake bracelets and armlets, even one of solid gold that was about a pound! There was only one that I wanted to take home though.

Huge Iuno statue. There was something so serene and thoughtful about her, standing there in a sea of sniffling tourists. She seemed regal without even trying.

Speaking of sniffling, it was cold outside! We went four hours south and found it to be much colder than back home. But it was worth it, because we got to see Vulcan's butt:

More later.

Corey goes in to surgery at 8 am.
jademermaid: (Servilia)
Curse tablets were sometimes made against chariot racers. Before a race a driver would put a curse on his opponents. Here is an example from curse tablet found in North Africa:


    I call upon you, o demon. whoever you are, and ask that from this hour, from this day, you torture and kill the horses of the Green and White factions, and that you kill and crush completely the drivers Clarus, Felix, Primulus, and Romanus, and that you leave not a breath in their bodies.


Oh, and here's another one that I thought was engaging to read.  In the HBO series ROME, they used this sort of stuff whenever Servillia cursed someone, which was often!


The following example is from a curse tablet found at Minturna. It was written in Latin but contains many misspellings, which has led to the probable conclusion that it is the work of someone in the lower class. The glee which it takes in thought of Ticene’s misfortune, and the thorough way in which every single part of her body is listed as a potential site for pain (even her shadow) demonstrates the depth of feeling experienced by the author.


Spirits of the underworld, I consecrate and hand over to you, if you have any power, Ticene of Carisius. Whatever she does, may it all turn out wrong. Spirits of the netherworld, I consecrate to you her limbs, her complexion, her figure, her head, her hair, her shadow, her brain, her forehead, her eyebrows, her mouth, her nose, her chin, her cheeks, her lips, her speech, her breath, her neck, her liver, her shoulders, her heart, her lungs, her intestines, her stomach, her arms, her fingers, her hands, her navel, her entrails, her thighs, her knees, her calves, her heels, her soles, her toes. Spirits of the netherworld, if I see her wasting away, I swear that I will be delighted to offer a sacrifice to you every year.

Shelton, JoAnn. 1997. ‘As The Romans Did.’ Oxford: Oxford University Press


These curses were usually written with a stylus on thin lead sheets, then rolled up and either stuck near the home of the person named, or dropped into wells, or buried.
jademermaid: (Roman TV)
Updated:2007-04-05 04:02:32
Archaeologists Unearth Jewelry-Laden Tomb
ATHENS (April 4) - Archaeologists on a Greek island have discovered a large Roman-era tomb containing gold jewelry, pottery and bronze offerings, officials said Wednesday. The building, near the village of Fiscardo on Kefalonia, contained five burials including a large vaulted grave and a stone coffin, a Culture Ministry announcement said.


The complex, measuring 26 by 20 feet, had been missed by grave-robbers, the announcement said.

Archaeologists found gold earrings and rings, gold leaves that may have been attached to ceremonial clothing, as well as glass and clay pots, bronze artifacts decorated with masks, a bronze lock and copper coins.

The vaulted grave, a house-shaped structure, had a small stone door that still works perfectly - turning on stone pivots.
jademermaid: (Default)

It's close, but I want it to be curlier next time.


Oct. 5th, 2005 11:19 am
jademermaid: (Default)
I know no one cares about this but me and [livejournal.com profile] amazon_mel, but I'm posting it anyway.

Atia is one of the most conniving and deliciously calculating characters on ROME. She is actually not portrayed as who she really was, and here is why (taken from unrv):


She married Lucius Marcius Philippus in 59 BC and remained so until her death. He was a man of consular rank and deep rooted senatorial tradition but was very much a Caesarian supporter. Atia died in late summer of the year following Caesar's death, 43 BC (Octavian was just about 20), and unfortunately not much else is known. We do know that both she and Philippus initially opposed Octavian 'collecting his inheritance' at Caesar's death, but this did not cause a rift. Philippus was later rewarded for his loyalty to Octavian and seems to have truly been a surrogate father. (Octavian's own father died when he was young... 4 if I remember correctly)

There really are very few mentions of Atia in the historical record... there are brief passages in Suetonius, Nicolaus of Damascus and Dio Cassius, but none go into any great detail.

So, she wasn't very interesting in history, but in this show she is my favorite character!


Oct. 5th, 2005 10:20 am
jademermaid: (Default)
In this week's episode, Niobe goes to town and gives prayer and offering to a heavy set priestess covered in red paint/blood? Is this the Magna Mater cult again, and if so, has anyone read where the priestess would accept offering in public like this?

I did finally find the account where they did the bull sacrifice in the first episode. Now that's good TV. :-)

Prudentius: The Taurobolion of Magna Mater

The high priestess who is to be consecrated is brought down under ground in a pit dug deep, marvellously adorned with a fillet, binding her festive temples with chaplets, her hair combed back under a golden crown, and wearing a silken toga caught up with Gabine girding. Over this they make a wooden floor with wide spaces, woven of planks with an open mesh; they then divide or bore the area and repeatedly pierce the wood with a pointed tool that it may appear full of small holes. Here a huge bull, fierce and shaggy in appearance, is led, bound with flowery garlands about its flanks, and with its horns sheathed---its forehead sparkles with gold, and the flash of metal plates colors its hair. Here, as is ordained, they pierce its breast with a sacred spear; the gaping wound emits a wave of hot blood, and the smoking river flows into the woven structure beneath it and surges wide. Then by the many paths of the thousand openings in the lattice the falling shower rains down a foul dew, which the priestess buried within catches, putting her head under all the drops. She throws back her face, she puts her cheeks in the way of the blood, she puts under it her ears and lips, she interposes her nostrils, she washes her very eyes with the fluid, nor does she even spare her throat but moistens her tongue, until she actually drinks the dark gore. Afterwards, the corpse, stiffening now that the blood has gone forth, is hauled off the lattice, and the priestess, horrible in appearance, comes forth, and shows her wet head, her hair heavy with blood, and her garments sodden with it. This woman, all hail and worship at a distance, because the ox's blood has washed her, and she is born again for eternity.


I guess the weird thing about how they adapted this is that they didn't understand that these priestesses were actually self-castrated men, and I'm sure that even though Atia is a rich woman, she probably couldn't make herself a priestess in a castrated cult, right?

And one more thing--wouldn't a sacrifice to Cybele/Magna Mater be a white animal? Only chthonic dieties received black animals.
jademermaid: (Default)
You scored as Commodus. Way to go, you are Commodus, harbinger of the end of the empire. Your megalomania resembles Caligula's, but you are at least popular with your fixation on the games in the Coliseum. Despite your best efforts to promote yourself and your so called golden age, no one is convinced. After you come 100 years of bloody civil war.
















Marcus Aurelius










Antoninus Pius




Which Roman Emperor Are You?
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