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NIHIL NOVUM SUB SOLE

1001 deeds, sayings, curiosities and anecdotes of the ancient world

Habits

Articles referring to the people’s ways of life and behaviors in Greek and Roman societies.

Apophthegmata , aphorisms, adages, maxims, axioms, sentences,

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The Greeks were the ones who decided that knowledge and advances in knowledge should be taught to citizens and that these were to be educated in that knowledge and respect for the law. Certainly neither the Greeks nor the Romans created a public system similar to modern education, but an education system with its various stages.

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Delta

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Delta is the name of the fourth letter of the Greek alphabet (Δ, δ), equivalent to the Latin "D, d". It was derived from the Phoenician letter “daleth”, “the door”.

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Exposure of corpses

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Human beings, unlike other animals, attend their dead and their corpses. This is attested since the Palaeolithic. The ways and customs of the various peoples referred to the fact of death and to treat the bodies, are many and varied. No doubt these rites are the result of confusion that causes death in all living beings; people seek immortality but man finds the decomposition of the body. It is therefore necessary to perform rites to avoid the process of decomposition . In expression of Walter Burkert, the Homo sapiens is a homo sepeliens (from Latin sepelio, burial), a man who buries his dead comrades.

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Place of Care of the Soul: ψυχῆς ἰατρείον (psychés iatreíon)

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Libraries are "points of care of the soul." This is a curious phrase, full of content, and that we like. It is originated on the label that allegedly existed in the "Sacred Library" of the temple and tomb of Pharaoh Ramses. But perhaps what is really behind the famous phrase is a historical misunderstanding.

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Catullus and Safo

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Catullus was a poet born in Verona in the year 84 BC, in a wealthy family friend of Julius Caesar. He went young to Rome, like many others, with the intention to enter politics, but what was devoted to poetry

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The three wise men (the three Magi)

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The birth of Jesus is celebrated in the West December 25. That birth is celebrated for a long time in Christendom and still currently in the Orthodox Church on January 6. But in the Catholic Church is celebrated now on January 6 the day of "epiphany" or manifestation of Jesus. According to the Gospel of St. Matthew 2: 1-12, some wise men came from the East to offer the newborn baby Jesus gold, frankincense and myrrh. Hence comes the custom in some countries, as in Spain, of gave gifts to children on the night of January 5.

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A modern Zeuxis

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Recently the Prado Museum has celebrated a painting exhibition titled "Juan Fernandez Labrador. Still Lifes ". Juan Fernandez is a painter of the Spanish Golden Age, little known, who painted mostly "still lifes". His representative works are paintings of "bunches of grapes".

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Is it interesting to know details and anecdotes of the Ancient World?

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Surely there are many people, including friends from "facebook", to whom these various anecdotes or comments about the ancient world interest little or interest nothing at all indeed. Probably somebody thinks they are writings made by self-absorbed people who don´t really care about the real and current problems of the crazy world we actually live in because he or she considers that the Ancient World is far away. Of course it is a respectable opinion.

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The Pillars of Hercules

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The mythical hero Hercules (because he does not reach the category of a god) couldn´t imagine that his famous columns representing the two mountains he placed when he opened the strait that separates the Atlantic Ocean from the Mediterranean Sea (Mare Nostrum = our sea, for the Romans), one in Africa, the other in Europe, would actually be, in effigy, naturally, in the pockets and bank accounts of millions of persons all over the world.

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The names of the months are Roman

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Among the many things that the Romans have left us no less important is the calendar with the names of the months, days and seasons. To understand the logic and coherence of the names "september= September; october= October; november= November and december= December," which etymologically means "seventh, eighth, ninth and tenth" we must know that the primitive Roman year had ten months and began in March.

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