Sunday, September 13, 2009
Le perdite beltate de Byzantio
(Languages of this post: Interlingua, English)
Un ecclesia stupende, un princessa fascinante, e un poema scribite in Byzantio in le sexte seculo es le componentes de un historia interessantissime de exploration archeologic presentate pro Martin Harrison del Universitate de Oxford.
In 1964 le autoritates turc invitava Harrison a excavar le sito de un magnific ecclesia byzantin in le centro de Istanbul, que alicun obreros habeva discoperite per accidente ante quatro annos.
Le ecclesia era sin dubita exceptional. Le prime discoperta era duo blocos de marmore que citava lineas ex un poema grec del sexte seculo, cognite per un sol manuscripto in le Universitate Heidelberg.
Iste poema face le elogio de un ecclesia spectacular in Constantinopole del sexte seculo e del remarcabile princessa byzantin Anicia Juliana, cuje ricchessas pagava le costos de construction. Clarmente, le blocos de marmore formava originalmente parte del ecclesia, cuje nave, como Harrison ha demonstrate, portava 41 de su versos in litteras alte de circa 11 centimentros.
In le curso del excavationes, Harrison e su collegas turc poteva recognoscer satis ben le plano e le decoration del edificio pro monstrar que le elogios del poema era toto justificate.
In un libro sumptuosemente illustrate, con le titulo “A Temple for Byzantium”, publicate per Harvey Miller, professor Harrison ha potite revelar con quante splendor le muros era revestite per tabulas de marmore colorate importate ab omne le territorios mediterranee. Le excavatores stupeva de vider le “novellitate, varietate, abundantia, e le perfecte qualitate technic” del sculptura, que, Harison dice, era “toto inexpectate”.
Le fideles debeva recitar lor orationes inter columnas incrustate per amethysto e sub un profusion sumptuose de sculpturas colorate de pavones, vites, e palmas. Harrison trovava tracias de pigmento blau clar sur alicunes del sculpturas e dice que “on pote ben imaginar altere colores inclusive de auro”.
Ma le characteristica le plus theatral del ecclesia se trova in le poema, que in un parte assere que Juliana “solmente ha conquirite le tempore e ha superate le sagessa del renominate Salomon”.
Professor Harrison explica que iste comparation inter Juliana e le rege biblic Salomon era probabilemente “nulle pretension vangloriose”. Le complimento le plus famose de Salomon era le construction de un nove templo in Jerusalem, cuje dimensiones es registrate fidelmente in le Biblia, cento cubitos quadrate del typo “longe” o “regal”.
“Si nos tene conto del possibilitate de error,” dice Harrison, “le dimensiones del ecclesia de Juliana, que mesura inter 51 e 52 metros quadrate, es le equivalente precise.”
Le luxo del ecclesia de Juliana ha exclarate in plus su ambitiones politic. Un figura ben cognite in le historia, illa era le granfilia del imperator Valentiniano III, un del ultime soveranos del imperio roman del occidente, e le filio de illa, multo eligibile al avantiamento politic, era a duo digitos de occupar le throno de Byzantio, le imperio roman del oriente, in le anno 512 p. Chr.
Professor Harrison vide le ecclesia, que superpassava omne altere ecclesias de Constantinopole, como un defia contra Justino, le imperator arriviste de ille tempore. In multe respectos le familias de Juliana habeva un pretension plus forte, plus legitime al throno que illo de Justino. Con su decoration impressionante, in le ecclesia que illa ha facite construer appare un assertion deliberate de su ambitiones dynastic--non pro se mesme, nam le byzantinos de su epocha non tolerava dar le autoritate supreme a un imperatrice, ma pro su infantes.
In despecto del pretensiones de su constructrice, le ecclesia de Juliana, como illo del Templo de Salomon, non era destinate a resister con successo le passage del tempore. Le excavationes de Harrison monstra que ante le anno 1100 illo era foras de uso como edificio ecclesiastic, ma serviva solo como habitation pro personas sin focar.
Ma un del resultatos plus extraordinari del excavation ha essite le identification de fragmentos del edificio in locos tanto remote de illo como Venetia e Barcelona. Il pare que le cavalieros del quarte cruciada, qui, scandalosemente, saccheava Constantinopole in 1204, era tanto impressionate con le decoration del ecclesia de Juliana que illes transportava via pecias de illo quando illes retornava al Europa occidental.
Le butino le plus spectacular ha devenite un puncto de referimento in le centro del Venetia moderne: durante plure seculos duo columnas de marmore, delicatemente sculpite, ha essite admirate per touristas in le placia de Sancte Marco. Harrison trovava un fragmento de un tertie columna identic in su excavationes, lo que provava que le duo columnas venetian proveniva de Istanbul e non de Palestina, como credeva historicos previe.
Per le ironia del historia, era le nepote e successor del nonaristocratic Justino, le imperator Justiniano, qui era destinate a facer construer le grande ecclesia del Sancte Sophia, cuje cupola, que pare defiar le fortia de gravitation, domina ancora le profilo del tectos de Istanbul. Harrison crede que le ecclesia de Justiniano era un tentative--que finalmente succedeva--a eclipsar le ecclesia rival de Juliana. Al completion de illo, on dice que le imperator proclamava: “Salomon, io ha superpassate vos.” Le decano del byzantistas, Sir Steven Runciman, explica que Juliana pare esser le “Salomon” a que ille pensava.
(Per Dr. A. J. S. Spawforth, Curator del Museo Grec al Universitate de Newcastle upon Tyne, publicate in anglese in le “Daily Telegraph”, 29 januario 1990, traducite in interlingua per Brian Sexton, e publicate in “Panorama”, No. 5, septembre-octubre, 1990 e republicate in “Interlingua in interlingua”)
A stupendous church, a fascinating princess, and a poem written in Byzantium in the sixth century are components of a very interesting history of archeological exploration presented for the first time by Martin Harrison of Oxford University.
In 1964 Turkish authorities allowed Harrison to excavate the site of a magnificent Byzantine church in the center of Istanbul, which some workers had discovered four years previously.
The church was exceptional without doubt. The first discovery was two blocks of marble that quoted lines from a Greek poem of the sixth century known through a single manuscript at Heidelberg University.
This poem praises a spectacular sixth-century church in Constantinopole built by the remarkable Byzantine princess Anicia Juliana, whose wealth paid for the construction costs. Clearly, the blocks of marble originally formed part of the church, whose nave, as Harrison has demonstrated, was inscribed with letters around eleven centimeters (4.3 inches) high.
During the excavations, Harrison and his Turkish colleagues were able to recognize pretty well the structure and decoration of the building to show that the praises of Juliana in the poem were completely justified.
In a sumptuously illustrate book with the title “A Temple for Byzantium,” published by Harvey Mille, professor Harrison has been able to reveal the splendor with which the walls were decorated with colored marble tables imported from all the territories of the Mediterranean. The excavators were stupefied at the sight of the “novelty, variety, abundance, and the perfect technical quality” of the sculpture, which, Harrison says, was “completely unexpected.”
The faithful had to recite their prayers between columns incrusted with amethyst and under a sumptuous profusion of colored sculptures of peacocks, grapevines, and palm trees. Harrison found traces of light blue pigment on some of the sculptures and says that “a person could easily imagine other colors, including gold.”
But the most threatrical characteristic of the church is found in the poem, which in one part asserts that Juliana “has conquered time and has outdone the wisdom of the renowned Solomon.”
Professor Harrison explains that this comparison between Juliana and the Biblical King Solomon was probably “no vainglorious pretension.” The most famous accomplishment of Solomon was the construction of a new temple in Jerusalem, whose dimensions are recorded accurately in the Bible, one hundred square cubits of the “long” or “regal” kind.
“If we keep in mind the possibility of error,” says Harrison, “the dimensions of Juliana’s church, which measures between 51 and 52 square meters (55 and 57 square yards), is the precise equivalent.
The luxuriousness of Juliana’s church has also shed light on her political ambitions. A well-known historical figure, she was the granddaughter of the Emperor Valentian III, one of the last sovereigns of the Western Roman Empire, and her son, highly eligible for political advancement, came very close to occupying the throne of Byzantium, the Roman empire of the east, in the year 512 A.D.
Professor Harrison sees the church, which outdid all the other churches of Constantinople, as an act of defiance against Justin, the social-climbing emperor of that time. In many respects the families of Juliana had an even stronger, more legitimate pretension to the throne than Justin’s family. With its impressive decoration, the church that she had constructed appears to be a deliberate assertion of her dynastic ambitions--not just for her, for the Byzantines of her epoch would not allow supreme authority to go to an Empress, but for her children.
Despite the pretensions of its builder, Juliana’s church, like Solomon’s temple, were not destined to successfully resist the passage of time. Harrison’s excavations show that before the year 1100 it was no longer used as an ecclesiastical building but served as a shelter for the homeless.
But one of the most extraordinary results of the excavation has been the identification of fragments of the building in places as remote as Venice and Barcelona. It seems that the knights of the fourth crusade, who scandalously plundered Constantinople in 1204, were so impressed with the decoration of Juliana’s church that they took away pices of it when they returned to Western Europe.
The most spectacular booty has become a point of reference in the center of modern Venice: for several centuries two delicately sculptured marble columns have been admired by tourists in the Piazza di San Marco. Harrison found a fragment of a third identical column in his excavations, which proved that the two Venetian columns came from Istanbul and not from Palestine, as previous historians believed.
Through an irony of history, it was the nephew and successor of the unaristocratic Justin, the emperor Justinian, who was destined to build the great Saint Sophia Church, whose dome, which seems to defy the force of gravity, still dominates the skyline of Istanbul. Harrison believes that Justinian’s church was an attempt--which finally succeeded--to eclipse the Juliana’s rival church. On its completion, it is said that the emperor proclaimed: “Salomon, I have outdone you.” The dean of Byzantine scholars, Sir Steven Runciman, explains that Juliana seems to be the “Solomon” that he was thinking of.
(By Dr. A. J. S. Spawforth, Curator of the Greek Museum at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, published in English in the “Daily Telegraph,” on January 29, 1990, translated into Interlingua by Brian Sexton, and published in “Panorama,” No. 5, September-October, 1990, and republished in “Interlingua in interlingua”)
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