Returning from Ostia Antica we were headed for the Aventine Hill. I really did not have that squarely in my consciousness as we had a major traffic intersection to cross, a pyramid to observe, and of course my final major responsibilities as the leader of the rear guard to attend to through it all. Frankly one does not run across pyramids of any significant size say at the corner of Abbot and Saginaw — maybe a little south of the U.S. Post Office in East Lansing. It does not happen. So when the Hat says, “See there is the Pyramid of Caius Cestius,” and then we move directly across several streets of traffic to climb the Aventine — well, it gives one pause. So in this pause almost five months later — in a phrase, it was the tomb of a Caius Cestius who according to Wikipedia was a “magistrate and member of one of the four great religious corporations in Rome, the Septemviri Epulonum.” From my reading it appears that the pyramids greatest importance is in that it survived at all — so to speak, with all its marbles! Over the millennia most of the marble got striped from ancient buildings. The structure was incorporated into the Aurelian Wall fortifications of Rome in the 270 AD’s. We see how that worked out.
November 13th, 2015
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