Sunday, August 14, 2022

Maiorianus revalorised Roman Antiquity at the Expense of the Middle Ages

Maiorianus Lamenting the Fall of Paganism · Maiorianus revalorised Roman Antiquity at the Expense of the Middle Ages

Top 10 incredibly advanced Roman technologies that will blow your mind.
27th Jan. 2022 | Maiorianus

3:04 Pozzolana volcanic ash was in rare supply, Roman cement would have been ended without the fall of the Roman empire, and fly ash or coal fly ash is at first toxic landfill, before you possibly revalorise it as cement.

But AQVAEDUCTI are my favourite charge against the end of Antiquity and beginning of the Middle Ages. It's so bad.

1) Two cities had been taken through the aquaeducts, Naples by Belisarius, Vienne in Isère by Clovis. They had shown themselves a military security hasard, which was one reason to end them;
2) It has been pretended that Medieval water quality was so low you needed wine instead, false : it is actually aquaeduct water that was such a microbe hasard that it had to be mixed with wine or vinegar to be safe for consumption. Gazpacho goes back to a mixture of bread, vinegar and (aquaeduct) water used by legionaries, and the vinegar was obviously added to avoid gastroenteritis and similar. The aquaeducts were covered by stone slabs, so no twigs or insects would fall down into the running water (as long as the stone slabs were undamaged), but this did not stop bird poop from leaking down or local bacterial foci from proliferating ... long live Medieval well water!

4:15 Nîmes is Nîmes and not Nemours because it is NEMausus (Gallic name miming Greek accentuation).

Nemours is Nemours (and not Nîmes) because it is what you pronounced, nemAUSus (Gallic name with indigenous Gallic accentuation).

So, when you refer to Nîmes, please accentuate the first syllable, the name is not a Latin one. Antepenultima rule does not apply.

7:53 (symbolic time signature, right?) Both giant buildings and arches were far from lost, but rather developed over the Middle Ages.

Hagia Sophia has a somewhat less big diameter of the dome, but a higher height than the Caracalla baths .... Notre Dame has a height higher than both in the tower, lower than both in the nave. And a better arch, unless someone misplaces cigarettes or uses burning glasses on the wood frames of oak (whichever it was).

9:05 It used to be Our Lady and All Saints up to when a mayor of post-papal Rome, a Jew, preferred strange gods over the Christian God. Since, I think the time of Pope Gregory I.

9:46 Great feat, technologically, immoral use.

Flavian times - Colosseum used to feed martyrs to lions or pit gladiators against gladiators, with killing for fun.
Papal times - Colosseum used as improvised homeless shelter (more or less on the model of a Spanish inn, a cotarro, not a modern homeless shelter).

10:56 And yes, there was a modern stadium that collapsed too ....

11:24 Totally granted for once.

Roman roads are great for the feet, and when they remained in use, that was the best part of the Medieval road system.

I walked some stretches on the Camino de Santiago, for instance near Astorga or León (Asturicam or Legionem).

11:39 All if it did not fall, it survived in patches.

16:55 Keeping a city clean in Roman times : putting dirt into what runs through Cloaca Maxima.

Keeping a city clean from Medieval to Napoleonic : allowing surrounding peasants, especially in the case of Boulogne (near Paris, now Boulogne-Billancourt), vineyard owners to serve themselves from cess heaps.

18:32 Hippocrates and Celsus were not lost in the Middle Ages, at least not everywhere (I think Salerno was the big Mediaeval med school that became a university faculty of medicine, and by then Avicenna had added to the knowledge).

19:14 No, definitely "certainly a lot more advanced than later Mediaeval medicine" - it's just that bleeding is an acute remedy for high blood pressure (my nose bleeds, though rare, sometimes serve that function) and it had come into fashion in the Middle Ages and stayed in fashion to the time when it hastened the death of George Washington.

Mediaeval medicine definitely kept the cures of Celsus and the diagnoses of Hippocrates, and added the knowledge of Avicenna (for instance on how to prevent blindness in cases of small pox - dim light and preferrably red over blue, still in use, when I had chicken pox).

20:25 I pretty much am certain those water wheels at Arles, like pottery on industrial scale, was manpowered by lots of slaves.

Certainly the aquaeduct of Vienne was, and its entrance point was betrayed to Clovis by a malcontent slave.

Slavery was not abolished for economic convenience, it was abolished for Christianity, more than once, since somewhat erratically. St. Bathilde, Wilberforce ...

22:45 Given how much the steam age depended on fossil fuels, I am rather thankful Heron saw his steam engine as only an amusing toy.

Industrialisation, mainly, means making machines replace people, at ratios that keep making unemployment surge ...

23:49 I think if you wanted sound and words, that needed human performers, though - at least one!

24:24 If we find no round table anywhere near Somerset, it is possible the Arthurian round table was transferred from Nero's ... like his victory over Licinius and conquest of Constantinople may have been so from Constantine.

You know how oral legend sometimes does quirks to chronology and identity, like when Ermaneric and Theoderic meet "at THE Rabenschlacht" while each participated in two different battles of Ravenna in the real facts, and Dietrich never saw Etzel ...

25:25 Perhaps yet another reason why Charlemagne and Pope Leo III thought Romanity needed West Rome again ...

How do most of us feel about napalm bombings these days?

At the best, Greek fire may not have been used on civilians, but it was a gruesome way to die, not like a sword cut ....

28:10 No qualms about Romans having technology, but the "technological dark age" involved adopting a plough with iron ploughshares, perhaps inspired by Isaiah 2:4, a new harness for horses making their pull more effective AND the stirrup (though it may have had Asiatic precursors), which made cavalry more effective ...

28:36 Technological knowledge of the Renaissance : mainly inherited from Middle Ages, some invented in Late Middle Ages, and some (fairly little, not unimportant) discovered from Vitruvius (like round arches, which were actually a technological backward thing).

Knowledge of the Renaissance inherited from Constantinople, via Cardinal Bessarion : Greek grammar, Greek Church Fathers, less well known Greek books from antiquity.

28:48 Had Rome not fallen in its avatars Vienna, Moscow, to some extent Berlin and Instanbul, and even Belgrade, in 1918 or around, somewhat later for Belgrade, we might not be as close to the Apocalypse's dark chapters as we are. But that didn't happen bc of technologic reversals to more primitive, more likely bc of certain technologic advancements (industrialism -> international capitalism -> colonial competition France - Germany; or inventions like tanks and Yperite ... the latter reminding of Greek fire).

And had Papal Rome not fallen to modernists some time between 1950 and 1990 ...

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