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TOPIC: The Oracle of the Dead
#735
Re:The Oracle of the Dead 4 Years, 11 Months ago Karma: 0  
Larry,
You may be right Robert Temple's "Oracles of the Dead" is an outcome of illogical conclusions. However, the complex seems to be structured and in the tunnels places are recognized that points at special functions. Moreover, Paget was already convinced that the place have had a special purpose. May be investigations might bring further understanding of the function of the complex. A first step could be the dating of the several parts of it? Is the complex a Greek or a Roman construction?
Hans
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#736
Re:The Oracle of the Dead 4 Years, 11 Months ago Karma: 0  
Hans,
The photos and diagrams just posted are from Robert Temple's "Oracles of the Dead." Both Paget and Temple fail to remind either themselves or their readers that the fabled oracle Sibyl existed in legend in many places. There is the Greek Erytheraean Sibyl as well as references to a Cumaean Sibyl and there were two of those. One near Cuma and another purported to be off a long tunnel near lake Avernus. Selene has been to see that one as well. Both are long time tourist attractions. Sibyl remains a legendary rather than a historic figure, an oracle that existed only in the poet's imagination.

With the photos and diagrams I scanned and sent to Fulvio and Selene, it should be easy to determine what the actual passageways and tunnels described by Paget and Temple actually are. Dating and identifying excavations as Greek or Roman is an easy matter.

Larry
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Gender: Male Larry M Ray Location: Gulfport, Mississippi  USA Birthdate: 1940-02-02
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Last Edit: 2009/08/11 00:31 By LarryRay.
 
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#737
Re:The Oracle of the Dead 4 Years, 11 Months ago Karma: 1  
A little history:
The site of the Baia Roman baths dates around the first century b.C..
First urban settlements (roman villas) of the area date from around the third century b.C..
Ottaviano Augusto, during his empire (27 b.C.- 14 AD), ordered the architect Sergio Orata to combine the Roman villas into a single thermal site and was able to engineer piping warm spring to different rooms. At Baia Sergio Orata (called so because he operated a successful fish farm mariculture in Lake Lucrino, in particular raising sea breams) also experimented with new architectural techniques later used in Rome, the dome of the Pantheon being a prime example. Over time, the Roman Baia baths were underwent many changes.
Subsequent emperors enlarged the structures eventually creating a classic Roman thermal bath complex.

From the photos that Larry scanned and posted on the Forum, the tunnels seem to clearly be Roman. However Homer in the XI book of Odyssey tell us Ulysses came ashore near the city of Cimmerii, where “you couldn't see the sun, neither when it rose nor when it set.” The legend indicates that is where Ulisses went down into netherworld. But who are the Cimmerii?
Strabone tell us the Cimmerii lived in caves called Argille and they operated mines in the area, also offering visits to their Oracle. Then we are told that the Cimmerii were killed by an indeterminate local king because he was displeased with a prophecy, but the Oracle was preserved and moved to another location.

Still Strabone tell us Cimè (Cuma) was founded by Cimmerii and Greeks...
He also describes a large tunnel (Crypta Neapolitana) commissioned by Cocceio that provided a direct route from Pozzuoli to Naples “a la Cimmerii.” If the very early Cimmerii actually built tunnels for the Romans we can't be certain, however in Naples there were quarters where the Cimmerii lived and some streets have their name.
Esichio tell us Cimmaris was the nickname of Cibele also called Sibyl, the Earth Mother, and she was said to have been visited and adored in “underground temples.”

Servio, Cluverio, Licofrone, Eforo, Ovidio, Silio Italico, Plinio, Festo, Cicerone, Esiodo and others make mention of the Cimmerii and describe their origins and customs.
In the meantime great geological events over millennia have changed and reshaped this land with the rising and falling of tectonic plates from geothermal activity that continues to this day.

Publius Vergilius Maro, better known to us as Virgil, the classical Roman Poet who wrote the Aeneid, still plays a big part in the myth and legend of Naples and it is still claimed that he is buried above the Mergellina quarter of the city.


The legends and myths in this ancient historic area provide for endless discussion and interpretation. I plan to go to Baia as soon as I can to explore and continue our research.

Here’s another local pearl: who knows why the local dialect in Pozzuoli is so different from others? We will look at that fascinating story another time.
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#738
Re:The Oracle of the Dead 4 Years, 11 Months ago Karma: 0  
Larry,
My apologies for responding so slowly to your latest message. You are probably right that the Sibyl fable existed in many places and therefore it could also exist in Baia. The tunnels in Baia may mean nothing, but in that case, it could be established if there is a complex of tunnels in Baia at all. I mean that there is no complex but it only happens that some tunnels are there. However, from the plan given in Figure 5 in the book "The Oracle of the Dead" I learn that in this case it concerns not a simple system of tunnels. A meaningful structure could be there but further investigation is needed. Curiosity is not strange, for national geographic has already spended a documentary on the work of Robert Temple. May be the whole story is speculation but anyhow it remains a fascinating story.
Selene,
Thanks for historical contribution. I notice that your are familiar with the classics. I understand that you plan to go to Baia. It may be not an easy task to visit the site. I understood that passage where sealed in Roman times and a lot of rubble is there. So, if you go, be careful!
Hans
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#739
Re:The Oracle of the Dead 4 Years, 11 Months ago Karma: 1  
Don't worry, Hans! I'm not too mad, just a little bit!
However we are organizing a visit to the site of Baia. With the photos of Temple's book that Larry posted we'll get an idea little lighter about the facts...at least I hope...
Hans have you seen the documentary?
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Last Edit: 2009/08/20 21:08 By Selene.
 
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#740
Re:The Oracle of the Dead 4 Years, 11 Months ago Karma: 0  
Selene,
Indeed, I have seen the documentary. The documentary was televised by National Geographic on 21/05/06 Su. Maybe the video can be bought from National Geographic. It was an interesting video.

For your information, I include some links to some relevant sites concerning Baia and the ulysses story. You will see that the sites are filled up with some fact fiction like stories. That is the reason I understand the sepsis of Larry quite well.

Therefore, it is useful to examine if Robert Temple is right or wrong. The story "Descent Into Hell" itself is a quite spectacular.

Hans

Links:
www.robert-temple.com/trips/descentIntoHell.html
www.societe-perillos.com/per_nombril3.html
www.perillos.com/per_navel_2.html
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Last Edit: 2009/08/21 18:33 By ReijndersH.
 
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