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MAGNA GRAECIA

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Bianca
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« Reply #120 on: December 29, 2008, 07:59:51 pm »

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« Reply #121 on: December 29, 2008, 08:01:27 pm »

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« Reply #122 on: December 29, 2008, 08:03:38 pm »

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« Reply #123 on: December 29, 2008, 08:04:46 pm »

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« Reply #124 on: December 29, 2008, 08:07:08 pm »

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« Reply #125 on: December 29, 2008, 08:08:34 pm »

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« Reply #126 on: December 29, 2008, 08:10:08 pm »

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« Reply #127 on: January 03, 2009, 10:03:09 pm »



A fifth-century athlete's sarcophagus from Taranto, Italy,
has been re-created in Beijing from scans of the original.

(Marco Merola)
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« Reply #128 on: January 03, 2009, 10:05:11 pm »










                                               Tomb of the Unknown Jock 





Volume 61 Number
5, September/October 2008 
by Marco Merola 

A great athlete's glory often lasts well beyond his lifetime—think of Jesse Owens racing across the
finish line in Berlin in 1936 on his way to capturing his fourth gold medal.

Now the story of another great athlete who triumphed in four events is living on, almost 2,500 years after his death, at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

One of the showpieces of the Games is an exhibition at the World Art Museum that showcases ancient Egyptian, Greek, and Roman sports. The highlights include copies of the sarcophagus and bones discovered at the famous Tomb of the Athlete in Taranto, Italy. Also on display are the original four amphorae the tomb's occupant received for winning first place in various athletic contests at a pan-Mediterranean festival similar to the Olympics.

The tomb was discovered in 1959 during construction of a building near the center of Taranto. Work was stopped and archaeologists soon came across the large stone sarcophagus and the four prize amphorae, which date to 480 B.C. and are decorated with sporting scenes. Inside the sarcophagus were the bones of a man (whose name is lost to us) holding an alabastron, a container for ointment used during sporting events.

Immediately the archaeologists knew they had found an athlete's burial.

But it wasn't until this year, when the sarcophagus and the bones were examined using modern imaging techniques, that the athlete's true story could be told.
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« Reply #129 on: January 03, 2009, 10:07:15 pm »





               

                Amphorae won by the athlete are also on display.

                (Marco Merola)
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« Reply #130 on: January 03, 2009, 10:08:55 pm »




                                   
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« Reply #131 on: January 03, 2009, 10:10:27 pm »










Using high-resolution laser scanning, researchers measured the sarcophagus precisely and saw previously unknown details of its painted frieze and traces of its once-bright colors. The data from the scans were transferred to a robotic arm that carved the copy of the sarcophagus now in Beijing from a block of resin (a process called rapid prototyping). Artists then manually applied the colored decoration.

Scholars at the Taranto Archaeological Museum also scanned the five-foot-five-inch athlete's bones. "It is clear that this man had sturdy bones designed to support great stresses," says Gaspare Baggieri, an anthropologist at the Ministry of Culture who has studied the bones since 1999.

The new scans showed Baggieri that the athlete had enormous calves and thighs, leading him to believe that the sportsman was a great runner and strong jumper. Baggieri thinks that he also had large trapezius and deltoid muscles, as well as overdeveloped neck and shoulders, suggesting he was almost certainly a javelin or discus thrower and a boxer.

 These events are echoed on the sides of the amphorae found in the tomb, which show a long jumper with halteres (jumping weights), a discus thrower, a chariot race, and two hefty pugilists.

You can see the sarcophagus from the Tomb of the Athlete at the newly renovated archaeological museum in Taranto (www.museotaranto.it). The museum showcases artifacts from the eighth to third centuries B.C., when Taranto was one of the biggest Greek colonies in Italy.



© 2008 by the Archaeological Institute of America


www.archaeology.org/0809/trenches/jocktomb.html
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« Reply #132 on: June 09, 2009, 08:54:03 pm »



Buildings rise up from the emerald coast of Salerno, Italy, a center of mozzarella di bufala production along with Caserta farther inland in the Campania region.

(Gaetano Barone
/Corbis)








                                                           Beautiful, unspoiled Paestum






LA Times
By Susan Spano,
Reporting from Paestum,
Italy
May 08, 2009

Even if there were no fresh mozzarella cheese on the wide plain that edges the Gulf of Salerno in southern Campania, the Greek ruins of Paestum would be reason enough for coming here.

Paestum was settled around 600 BC as part of a wave of Greek expansion that created a chain of colonies,
known as Magna Graecia, around the Mediterranean basin. Now it's one of the most intriguing archaeological
sites in Italy, visible proof of the subsequent Roman Empire's classical Hellenic foundations. It's still unspoiled
enough to make modern-day visitors feel like discoverers.

Paestum's three huge, elegant, breathtaking Doric-columned Greek temples loom above the plain about five
miles south of the beach town of Capaccio. The modest entrance across the lane from the museum yields to
a greensward covered with dandelions and clover, where dogs and visitors roam freely.

Sightseers get scant explanation, so it's best to buy a guidebook at one of the shops by the entrance to find
less obvious features such as the large house with a marble pool, or impluvium, for collecting rainwater and the Roman-era amphitheater.

The Greeks who founded Paestum succumbed to the inland Lucan people, who left marvelously frescoed tombs
in the area, and then to the Romans in the 3rd century BC. After the fall of the Roman Empire, Paestum was all
but abandoned to the malaria-infested marshes.

It wasn't until the 18th century, when Pompeii and Herculaneum were rediscovered, that Grand Tour travelers stumbled upon the ruins of Paestum, as perfect and undisturbed as Sleeping Beauty.

The nearby museum has a rich cache of findings from the Paestum area, including a collection of Lucanian tomb slabs bearing brightly painted images that look almost like doodles. Most famous among them is a fresco of a
diver caught in midair, symbolizing the soul's plunge from this life to the next.

Take time to study the museum's series of metopes, or stone panels decorating the frieze above a row of Doric columns. They were found at the site of an important Greek temple, dedicated to Hera, at the mouth of the Sele River about 10 miles north of Paestum. With almost comic book vividness, the metopes depict mythological scenes, including Hercules' capture of the dwarfish Cercopes, tied by their feet to a pole hoisted on the hero's shoulders.

No standing ruins remain at the site of the Hera sanctuary, but the Museum of Hera Agriva Sanctuary has excellent multimedia exhibits on the cult of Hera and the work of Paola Montuoro and Umberto Bianco, Italian archaeologists who discovered the sanctuary in 1934.

The old stones of Foce Sele lie scattered near the river, surrounded by artichoke fields and pastures where water buffaloes graze -- a magical Italian landscape in which daily life goes on amid the ruins of an ancient civilization.




susan.spano
@latimes.com
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« Reply #133 on: June 09, 2009, 08:55:32 pm »

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« Reply #134 on: June 09, 2009, 08:57:09 pm »


                 
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