History / Italy

Inquiring Minds Want To Know

We’d like to welcome Anita Harris’ (Terri’s wonderful cousin) 5th Grade Class from Crawfordsville, Indiana to the blog, and even though they should be studying explorers, maybe we can provide a diversion from time to time. Also, we’d like to specifically thank Phillip, Blake, Gabrielle, and Sarah for their comments on the fountains post.

Phillip and Blake both expressed their surprise that the Romans were advanced enough to design fountains like these. We may have given the impression that these fountains were from the Roman Empire. They aren’t. These fountains were constructed in the 16th and 17th Centuries, but the builders got the idea from engineers of the Roman Empire. If you want to see how advanced the Roman Empire was, Google “aqueducts”. These engineering marvels carried water great distances into Rome, and usually at the end of the aqueduct in Rome, they liked to build a fountain. Clever folks those Romans.

The Romans built lot of fountains, and if you want to see one from the Roman Empire, this fountain is in Ostia Antica, in the Temple of Psyche and Amore. Ostia Antica, which flourished during the second century BC, was the ancient port city for the Empire that’s 30 km outside Rome. In the photo I’m sitting in the middle of the fountain, and the water would have cascaded from the platform behind me, and also out of the holes on the front. There would also have been lovely sculptures, which hopefully, are somewhere in a museum.

 

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Sarah commented on the marvelous sculptures and Gabrielle mentioned how cool the fountains looked. There is a reason these fountains are so wonderful, and his name is Gian Lorenzo Bernini. He was the leading sculptor of his age, and during the 17th Century in Italy his works were considered some of the best.

And to keep us out of trouble, maybe we should think about explorers. I wonder if there were any explorers who sailed out of Ostia Antica?

Happy Trails,
James

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