Добро пожаловать к этому международному месту открытки изображения. Benvenuto a questo luogo internazionale della cartolina di immagine. Καλωσορίστε σε αυτήν την διεθνή περιοχή καρτών εικόνων. Willkommen zu diesem internationalen Abbildungspostkarteaufstellungsort. Bienvenue à cet emplacement international de carte postale. Onthaal aan deze Internationale plaats van de beeldprentbriefkaar. Welcome to this International picture postcard site. (Please Click on the Picture for an Enlarged View)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Cyprus - Mosaics of Paphos

My Dear Friend Merja sent me these two cards from the site of Cyprus Mosaics, or more commonly referred name of ‘Paphos Mosaics’, are a series of mosaic floors in villas of ancient Roman noblemen. The site where the villas are still being excavated can be found about 300 metres from the Paphos harbour. The mosaics feature mythological characters and scenes, and were constructed from small cubes of marble and stone, called tesserae, with glass paste added to widen the range of colour. The cult of Aphrodite was officially established on Cyprus in 1500 BC, with the building of a hilltop temple on this site. However, idols of a fertility goddess dating from as early as 3800 BC have been found at Palea Paphos. The cult may owe its origins to Achaean colonists, who adopted the worship of a native fertility goddess named Astort (the Canaanite form of Ishtar), who they Hellenized as Aphrodite. Although the worship of Aphrodite seems to have come from the east, it was soon identified with Cyprus. Homer referred to the goddess as the "Cyprian" as early as the 8th century BC, and she was called the "Paphian" in the 6th century BC. Inscriptions at Palea Paphos call her simply Wanassa, "the lady." The Temple of Aphrodite stood on a knoll about 2km inland, overlooking the sea. The town of Palea Paphos soon sprang up around the temple.
Leda and the Swan is a motif from Greek mythology in which Zeus came to Leda in the form of a swan. According to later Greek mythology, Leda bore Helen and Polydeuces, children of Zeus, while at the same time bearing Castor and Clytemnestra, children of her husband Tyndareus, the King of Sparta. In the W.B. Yeats version, it is subtly suggested that Clytemnestra, although being the daughter of Tyndareus, has somehow been traumatised by what the swan has done to her mother. As the story goes, Zeus took the form of a swan and raped or seduced Leda on the same night she slept with her husband King Tyndareus. In some versions, she laid two eggs from which the children hatched. In other versions, Helen is a daughter of Nemesis, the goddess who personified the disaster that awaited those suffering from the pride of Hubris. Tile mosaic depicting Leada and the Swan (the card on the right) from the Sanctuary of Aphrodite, Palea Paphos; is now exhibited in the Cyprus Museum, Nicosia

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