Monday, October 30, 2006

Wonders of the Ancient World

Image : Maussollos, the Satrap of Caria.

Only one of the ancient wonders of the world still survives - the Pyramids of Khofu, but votes are being taken for new wonders which we can still see today.

Can you name the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World off the top of your head? Just to refresh your memory ....

The Great Pyramid of Giza - A gigantic stone structure near the ancient city of Memphis, serving as a tomb for the Egyptian Pharaoh Khufu. (Cheops)

The Hanging Gardens of Babylon - A palace on the banks of the Euphrates river for King Nebuchadnezzar II. The beautiful remains of the beginning of western civilisation have all been obliterated from the ancient land of Mesopotamia. Some treasures have been destroyed, not by time and natural decay, but by massive bombings in only the last few years.

The Statue of Zeus at Olympia - An enormous statue of the Greek father of Gods, carved by the great sculptor Pheidias.

The Temple of Artemis at Ephesus - A beautiful temple in Asia Minor erected in honor of the Greek Goddess, Protector of young women and of wild nature.

The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus - A tomb constructed for King Maussollos, Persian satrap of Caria.

The Colossus of Rhodes - A colossus of Helios, God of the Sun, erected by the Greeks near the harbour of Rhodes.

The Lighthouse of Alexandria - A lighthouse built by the Ptolemies on the island of Pharos.

You can now Vote for the New Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Or at least, vote for six of them. You may choose places such as Stonehenge, Easter Island and more. Even the Kremlin is on the list.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Superficial aspects

This chalk on the footpath sketch is flat. The artist is Julian Beever who gives to his drawings an amazing 3D illusion.

It's easy to be deceived. Muralist, William Cochran, says ...

"How easily paint can fool the eye is a metaphor for how easily we're fooled by surface differences in each other, like race, attitude, language, and gender. These lock us into stereotypes of who it is OK to connect with.

What could be more amazing than the fact that we are divided by illusions every day, by superficial aspects of each other that fool us into thinking we are fundamentally different, when in fact we are all fundamentally the same."

We are all fundamentally the same.

More amazing art from Julian Beever

Sunday, October 08, 2006


The cult of Mithras was popular throughout the Roman world from the Middle East, via Italy, to its northern limits at Hadrian’s Wall and along the German border. At least until Constantine decided that Christianity would suit his rule better.

In essence, Mithraism was centred on the worship of the saviour god Mithras, born of a Virgin and a God, whose birthday is 25 December. Sound familiar?

Because of political aspirations, and a desire to confine the power of the Army, the state religion was named as the new cult of Christianity.

More on Mithras, God of Soldiers