Naples – Bizarre traditions venerating skulls

To this day thousands of years old rites and cults characterize Naples. They are of Greek, Roman and Christian origin, mixed with traditions and legends. One particularly bizarre ritual is that of venerating the souls in purgatory by tending to skulls - the cult of the Anime Pezentelle.While there has always been veneration of the... Continue Reading →

Walled in alive in Antigua Guatemala

In Antigua Guatemala, the former capital of Guatemala, there are the ruins of numerous Spanish colonial buildings. The magnificent churches in particular still attract visitors today. One of them is particularly fascinating, due to its peculiar structure and goosebump-inducing history: the church and convent of the Capuchin nuns. The convent was consecrated in 1736 and... Continue Reading →

Who burned the ships of Caligula? or: When Rome was almost displaced to Egypt

Despite their extraordinary importance, the great public hardly knows the Nemi ships and their history. The reason is obvious: they no longer exist. Their story, however, is fascinating. These two ancient parade boats were gigantic constructions that Emperor Caligula had built in honour of the goddess Diana during his term of office, which lasted only... Continue Reading →

The place to be

They exist, the bottlenecks of the world, the places where everyone passes through and which everyone knows. Today you would list Frankfurt Airport, Heathrow and Miami, in the past it was the Azores, Goree in Senegal, Madagascar or the Cape of Good Hope.

A history of lead

Great events are known to cast their shadows, even if sometimes they cast them behind. Whether the Emperor Nero was really the one who burned Rome in 64 A.D. or whether it burned due to carelessness is difficult to determine today, but it is clear that this event had consequences. Among others it resulted in... Continue Reading →

Wandering in hidden places

In the middle of August last year, I stood in a grotto whose walls were grey with wetness and covered in stalactites. The light from the headlamps flickered eerily and my shoes slipped on the ancient steps of a sunken amphitheatre that the tuff had enclosed as tightly as hard stone. At one place a... Continue Reading →

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