Library at Alexandria found

Brian G Turner

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Archaeologists have found what they believe to be the site of the Library of Alexandria, often described as the world's first major seat of learning.

A Polish-Egyptian team has excavated parts of the Bruchion region of the Mediterranean city and discovered what look like lecture halls or auditoria.

Two thousand years ago, the library housed works by the greatest thinkers and writers of the ancient world.

Works by Plato and Socrates and many others were later destroyed in a fire.


More: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/3707641.stm
 

nemogbr

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Fascinating bit of news.

It's really a pity about what has happened to Alexandria.

First a political capital and now just an ordinary city after a couple thousand years.
 

Esioul

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Yes: it tells us all about Socrates' feet, which in turn can be used for understanding the nature of his life.
 

Lacedaemonian

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Did they find Alexander's corpse? The BBC will run a documentary hopefully. Ignore my silly corpse comment.
 

Brian G Turner

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I actually think Constantine was supposed to have moved it to Constantinople when he re-founded Rome there. I could have sworn I read a reference to that somewhere once, but I could be quite wrong. Either way, I've no idea where it was supposed to be after the 300's.
 

Lacedaemonian

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Was that a reference to Alexanders corpse Brian? Apparently it was hidden in a secret location in the middle of the desert. I use to know about all things Alexander when I was younger, strange how time can erode knowledge. What do you think about the two movies that are being made? I hate Baz Lurmann. I don't mean to upset you Baz Lurmann lovers out there, but his films, although visually stunning, are devoid of any content or script. Apparently Baz has used Valerio Massimo Manfriedi's three book series on Alexander which is amaizing, so hopefully he can finally do one good movie. Maybe we could have two good films on our hands, but I can not help but feel that they will both be rubbish. Please let me be wrong! I once again recommend the author Manfriedi to all you history and fantasy lovers. His Alexander series is perhaps his best work.
 

Brian G Turner

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So far as I know, certainly until the time of Julius Caesar, Alexander's corpse was supposed to have it's own shrine in Egypt - Alexandria, I believe.
 

Lacedaemonian

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That is true Brian. He was embalmed in a shrine in Alexandria, but I am sure that I read somewhere that due to a war which effected Alexandria (I am not sure which war) his body was hastily removed and hidden in an unmarked spot in the desert. When I am back at home I will have a look through my sources to see if I can get more details on this.
 

Neil040

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I said:
Two thousand years ago, the library housed works by the greatest thinkers and writers of the ancient world.

Works by Plato and Socrates and many others were later destroyed in a fire.
Thats interesting Brian.. I remember Carl Sagan describing the library at Alexandra and what a loss it was.. it probably was the singlest greatest loss of knowledge and history... he said for example there was one set of 20 volumes of the 'History of the World' there.. and that covered the period ENDING over two thousand years ago! If anyone comes across a copy of those in their attic be sure to let me know!! :)
 

ommigosh

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That BBC article said that : The library was later destroyed, possibly by Julius Caesar who had it burned as part of his campaign to conquer the city.

A huge loss to the world.

Pardon my almost total ignorance about history, but I have variously heard it said that the library was burned down by a) "the christians" or b) by the "muslims" or c) by first "the christians" and then "the muslims" after it got rebuilt and the collection reassembled.

Now the BBC says that possibly Julius Caeser did it! Does anyone know for sure?
 

Neil040

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ommigosh said:
Pardon my almost total ignorance about history, but I have variously heard it said that the library was burned down by a) "the christians" or b) by the "muslims" or c) by first "the christians" and then "the muslims" after it got rebuilt and the collection reassembled.

Now the BBC says that possibly Julius Caeser did it! Does anyone know for sure?
They probably all did it... famous arsonists around in those days.. lol

I lived in a small town in shrophire once whoss church had the dubious distinction of having been burned down THREE times during the civil war... first it was a royalist town.. so the parliament forces burnt the church and turned it into a protestant one.. the town was retaken and burnt again.. and turned into a catholic one again.. and you can guess the rest... lol (it was a norman stone church so I guess they just burnt the pews and roof perhaps..)

Could have been that kind of a game they played... :eek:
 

Stalker

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An interesting information is that some books of the Great Library at Alexandria may till now be lying hidden somewhere in the Centre of Moscow.
This story is based on the fact that Moscovian czar Ivan III got married to Byzantine princess Sophia Paleolog and her marriage portion was part of priceless library of Byzantine basileus. The point is this particular part of the library that later got the name of Ivanova Libereya (Ivan's Library) contained some books seized from the Alexandrine Library. They say there might have been lots of Ancient Greek books that are considered lost and apocripha - e.g. Juda's Gospel. Who knows?
 

Blue Mythril

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Ah the library of Alexandria! How many of us don't secretly harbor a dream that it wasn't burnt down and that some lucky archaeologist will stumble upon that wealth of material...
*wipes away a tear*

As to who burned it, I'm fairly sure it was part of Caesar's destruction, though I think it quite possible that Caesar would have preferred all those texts not to have been destroyed... So many unforeseen consequences of our actions....
 

BAYLOR

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It's a pity that all those works were brought to ruin..........after all, it does contain some greatest discovery of that time.

Julius Cesar, St Cyril and his followers for that and Caliph Omar in the 7th Century to thank that. Their combined ignorance set back civilization centuries.
 

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