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Apollo reappears

August 2, 2011

How wonderful to see a wall mosaic of Apollo and his muses reappearing from beneath (ancient) Roman building work.

Apollo was the son of the Greek god Zeus, and his ‘numerous and diverse functions’  included healing, purification, prophecy, care for young citizens, poetry and music*.

Although the Romans could be sniffy about Greek doctors (Pliny the Elder declared  that there was ‘no greater reason for the decay in morals than medicine’) they don’t seem to have felt the same way about Greek gods. While Aesculapius is the famous ‘healing’ god, Rome also had a temple to Apollo Medicus – built in an attempt to avert a plague.

The video is here on the BBC website.

 

* all this and more is in the Oxford Classical Dictionary.

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2 comments

  1. Thanks for the link. When I saw the headline, I thought for a moment that it was something about American spaceflight! Poor Apollo’s name was adapted to a newfangled purpose during the 20th century.


    • I didn’t think of that! Maybe he was the god of space travel, too.



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