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NIHIL NOVUM SUB SOLE

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

Mosquitoes preserved the temples of Paestum, Italy, a World Heritage Site

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<?=?>Without any doubt, the biggest agent of destruction is man himself. A kind of Mosquito expelled the man from Paestum, and several Greek temples in the area have lasted until today in a remarkable state of preservation.

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The Greeks from Sybaris founded the city of Poseidonia at the mouth of the river Silarus, in Magna Graecia (Southern Italy) in the late seventh or early sixth century B.C. Parmenides and Zeno, among other philosophers, taught in Poseidonia. In 273 B.C. became a Roman colony called Paestum. Poseidonia or Paestum was famous for its roses.


There are not many news during the Republican and Imperial Roman era, but we know that in the V century there was bishop, although its decline was evident.


Perhaps a change in the level of the sea, very close, or the conditions of the mouth of the river, that area became a marshy swamp, a perfect habitat for insect Anopheles, whose females suck blood and transmit malaria.


Precisely these unsanitary conditions forced the inhabitants to leave the place, and occupied by weeds and vegetation it remained hidden until the eighteenth century, when King Charles III of Spain, then king of Naples, built a road passing through the city.


There were three Doric temples built in the sixth century B.C. dedicated to Hera, Apollo and Athena, although traditionally were considered dedicated to Poseidon or Neptune and Ceres. They are the best preserved Greek temples. The Romans built a forum or large square and other elements from Roman urbanism as the amphitheater.


Unesco has declared the whole city World Heritage Site. Its extraordinary state of preservation makes visitors to thrill now, once eradicated the annoying mosquito. This time the poisoned wind preserved the wonder.

 

   
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