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Bones In Togas Puzzle Vatican Arhaeologists
The Telegraph (UK) ^ | 5-21-2006 | Nick Pisa

Posted on 05/20/2006 7:30:15 PM PDT by blam

Bones in togas puzzle Vatican archaeologists

By Nick Pisa in Rome
(Filed: 21/05/2006)

Archaeologists exploring one of Rome's oldest catacombs are baffled by neat piles of more than 1,000 skeletons dressed in elegant togas.

The macabre find emerged as teams of historians slowly picked their way through the complex network of underground burial chambers, which stretch for miles under the city.

They say the tomb, which has been dated to the first century AD, is the first known example of a "mass burial".

The archaeologists are unable to explain why so many apparently upper-class Romans - who would normally have been cremated - were buried in the same spot, apparently at the same time.

Forensic tests are being carried out to try to establish whether the Romans suffered violent deaths, or were victims of an undocumented epidemic or natural disaster.

There are dozens of catacombs beneath the ancient city, some dating back 2,000 years and many used as burial places by early Christians. Others were used as secret places of worship to avoid persecution.

The Vatican's Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology is overseeing the dig. Its chief inspector of catacombs, Raffaella Giuliani, said: "This is the earliest example of such a mass burial. Usually two or three bodies at the most were put into holes dug out of the rock in the catacombs, but in these case we have several rooms filled with skeletons.

"They are placed one on top of the other and not in a disorderly fashion. They have been carefully buried, with dignity, but the puzzle is why so many at a time?"

The skeletons were dressed in fine robes, many containing gold thread, and wrapped in sheets covered with lime, as was common in early Christian burials.

The discovery was made at the Catacomb of SS Peter and Marcellinus on the ancient Via Labicana in south-east Rome.

Miss Giuliani said there was no obvious sign that violence was the cause. "We are trying to establish whether the skeletons were buried there following some form of epidemic or natural disaster.

It is possible they could have been persecuted and killed by the Romans and then buried there by fellow Christians - we just don't know."

The Vatican will officially present the discovery next month, along with officials from the University of Bordeaux who had been involved in the excavations.


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: ancientrome; archaeologists; bones; catacombs; godsgravesglyphs; massgrave; mystery; puzzle; togas; vatican
Epidemic?
1 posted on 05/20/2006 7:30:17 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam

No. Toga party gone horribly wrong.


2 posted on 05/20/2006 7:32:17 PM PDT by RichInOC (...Phi Kappa Sigma, Beta Rho '87..."TOOOGAAAA!!! TOOOGAAAA!!!")
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To: blam

It's not a mass burial... it's a TOGA party!


3 posted on 05/20/2006 7:32:44 PM PDT by TWohlford
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To: SunkenCiv

GGG Ping.


4 posted on 05/20/2006 7:32:46 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam
Epidemic?

Toga party?


5 posted on 05/20/2006 7:35:07 PM PDT by ElkGroveDan (California bashers will be called out)
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To: TWohlford

I think I would rather be buried in a Toga instead of a stuffy suit.


6 posted on 05/20/2006 7:36:51 PM PDT by DannyTN
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To: blam

Early Raelians?


7 posted on 05/20/2006 7:38:51 PM PDT by muawiyah (-)
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To: blam

Nike tennies?


8 posted on 05/20/2006 7:39:34 PM PDT by Migraine (...diversity is great (until it happens to you)...)
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To: blam; FairOpinion; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 24Karet; 3AngelaD; ...
Thanks Blam. I think we had one like this, but just to be on the safe side...

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list. Thanks.
Please FREEPMAIL me if you want on or off the
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Gods, Graves, Glyphs (alpha order)

9 posted on 05/20/2006 7:42:03 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: NoCmpromiz

ping


10 posted on 05/20/2006 7:42:39 PM PDT by DJ MacWoW (If you think you know what's coming next....You don't know Jack.)
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To: blam

They may have actually saw Jesus, his disciples or knew the disciples friends or relatives and were saved. Why can't any class of people from any region or civilization believe in Christ? I envy their almost first hand knowledge.


11 posted on 05/20/2006 7:44:35 PM PDT by Dallas59
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To: RichInOC

Roman Republican Party Reptiles?


12 posted on 05/20/2006 7:45:45 PM PDT by Ronin (Ut iusta esse, lex noblis severus necesse est.)
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To: Dallas59

Question that may never be answered: Did Jesus ever travel to Rome? If not, I wonder why not?


13 posted on 05/20/2006 7:50:23 PM PDT by Dallas59
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To: blam

in sheets covered with lime

ahm, lime?


14 posted on 05/20/2006 7:56:35 PM PDT by Flavius (Qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum)
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To: blam
Hemlock in the punch bowl at the toga party?
15 posted on 05/20/2006 7:57:40 PM PDT by fso301
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To: blam

Better a toga than.......a tutu!


16 posted on 05/20/2006 8:04:00 PM PDT by Doctor Don
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To: blam

Killed by the pagans for refusing to renounce Christ most likely.

My guess: they were obliged to take poison.


17 posted on 05/20/2006 8:11:19 PM PDT by BenLurkin
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To: blam

Bring in a 'psychic detective'. . .


18 posted on 05/20/2006 8:57:31 PM PDT by cricket (Live Liberal-free. . .or suffer the consequences)
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To: Dallas59
Question that may never be answered: Did Jesus ever travel to Rome? If not, I wonder why not?

No visa??

19 posted on 05/20/2006 9:02:30 PM PDT by ExtremeUnction
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To: Peanut Gallery

ping


20 posted on 05/20/2006 9:07:03 PM PDT by Professional Engineer (USA, USA, USA)
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To: BenLurkin
My guess: they were obliged to take poison.

That could be if they were Patricians.

21 posted on 05/20/2006 9:09:11 PM PDT by Pelayo
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To: RichInOC

It could have been the secret society behind the Heavens Gate cult, no?


22 posted on 05/20/2006 9:16:34 PM PDT by IllumiNaughtyByNature (My Pug is On Her War Footing)
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To: Dallas59
Did Jesus ever travel to Rome? If not, I wonder why not?

His kingdom was not of this world. He came to the land of His chosen people to die and rise again

23 posted on 05/20/2006 10:12:06 PM PDT by Hebrews 11:6 (Do you REALLY believe that (1) God is, and (2) God is good?)
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To: blam
Interesting

They may have seen or even heard Jesus speak.

24 posted on 05/20/2006 10:40:15 PM PDT by Dustbunny (Amazing Grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me)
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To: american colleen; Lady In Blue; Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; Notwithstanding; ...
Catholic Ping List
Please freepmail me if you want on/off this list


25 posted on 05/20/2006 11:54:56 PM PDT by NYer (Discover the beauty of the Eastern Catholic Churches - freepmail me for more information.)
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To: BenLurkin
The Romans never required Christians to renounce Christ. They did require them to take part in official Roman religious ceremonies, however, which the Christians refused to do -- hence the persecution. Jews, who made the same refusal, were given special dispensation as their religion was extremely ancient, whereas Christianity was considered a fairly recent cult.

The Romans were amazingly tolerant of other folks' religions, which probably came from living in a polytheistic society.

26 posted on 05/21/2006 3:56:17 AM PDT by Junior (Identical fecal matter, alternate diurnal period)
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To: ExtremeUnction
No visa??

Of course. We know the Romans didn't accept American Express...

27 posted on 05/21/2006 3:57:44 AM PDT by Junior (Identical fecal matter, alternate diurnal period)
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To: Dallas59
"I envy their almost first hand knowledge."

As do I. Wouldn't it be great to have all your questions answered and to know the Lord in person on the earth?

Carolyn

28 posted on 05/21/2006 4:01:02 AM PDT by CDHart ("It's too late to work within the system and too early to shoot the b@#$%^&s."--Claire Wolfe)
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To: blam

Bones in a toga. Guess they are filming a new season.


29 posted on 05/21/2006 4:08:14 AM PDT by Vinnie
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To: blam
Forensic tests are being carried out to try to establish whether the Romans suffered violent deaths, or were victims of an undocumented epidemic or natural disaster.

It's probably too late to apprehend the perpetrators.

30 posted on 05/21/2006 4:30:06 AM PDT by Aquinasfan (When you find "Sola Scriptura" in the Bible, let me know)
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To: Flavius
ahm, lime?

Did they find a salt shaker?

31 posted on 05/21/2006 8:38:26 AM PDT by Lessismore
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To: Aquinasfan
It's probably too late to apprehend the perpetrators.

Maybe not. Is Jimmy Hoffa among them?

32 posted on 05/21/2006 8:39:34 AM PDT by Lessismore
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To: Dallas59
They may have actually saw Jesus, his disciples or knew the disciples friends or relatives and were saved. Why can't any class of people from any region or civilization believe in Christ? I envy their almost first hand knowledge

Jezus doesnt like envy :)
33 posted on 05/21/2006 2:39:38 PM PDT by S0122017
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To: Junior
The Romans never required Christians to renounce Christ. They did require them to take part in official Roman religious ceremonies, however, which the Christians refused to do -- hence the persecution. Jews, who made the same refusal, were given special dispensation as their religion was extremely ancient, whereas Christianity was considered a fairly recent cult. The Romans were amazingly tolerant of other folks' religions, which probably came from living in a polytheistic society.

Romans did round up Christians after the whole Rome burning incident and threw them to the lions. Oh and they crucified Jezus to punish the Jews and prevent another uprising (they wheren't convinced Jezus was peacefull). So their tolerance was limited, they treated other religions like muslims treat other religions. Accept them as long as they obey, otherwize kill a few thousand to show whos boss.
34 posted on 05/21/2006 2:44:28 PM PDT by S0122017
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To: blam
Although the number sounds extraordinarily high, that Christians were executed in large numbers is part of historical tradition:

The Theban Legion and St. Maurice

"According to the earliest accounts we have, an entire Roman legion was martyred for refusing to sacrifice to pagan gods and/or take an oath to extirpate the Christians of Gaul.

The year was 287 or thereabouts. Diocletian had divided imperial rule with Maximian Herculius. The two claimed to be sons of the gods, incorporated the names of Jove and Hercules into their titles, and set about imposing Roman peace to the empire. A revolt was in progress in Gaul, its adherents calling themselves the Bagaudians. It was to quell this disturbance that Maximian brought up the Theban Legion from Egypt.

The region of Thebes was the most fiercely Christian of all Egypt. Supposedly this whole legion of 6,600 men were Christians. Ordered to sacrifice to pagan deities they refused, and were encouraged by their commanders, Maurice, Exuperius and Candidus to remain strong. Consequently, Maximian had 1/10th of the Theban soldiers executed. When the rest of the men remained stubborn, he killed more, and finally slaughtered everyone who was left. Certainly Maximian was brutal enough to order such a deed. Maurice was beheaded, too. This took place near Lake Geneva. The memory of the event was so strong that in the middle of the following century, a church was built in their honor. Bishop Theodore claimed he had a vision showing where the martyrs' bones were buried. The name of the town of Saint-Moritz, Switzerland preserves the memory of Maurice."

http://chi.gospelcom.net/DAILYF/2002/09/daily-09-22-2002.shtml

35 posted on 05/21/2006 10:02:34 PM PDT by HowlinglyMind-BendingAbsurdity
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To: Migraine

... and purple shrouds ...


36 posted on 05/21/2006 10:05:45 PM PDT by BunnySlippers (We want our day: A day without hearing SPANISH ...)
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To: blam

It was probably a trend that became fashionable then died down. Maybe something to do with a resurrection cult or the parusius (the return).


37 posted on 05/21/2006 10:10:32 PM PDT by Blind Eye Jones
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To: BenLurkin

I hope they will be testing for poison. That was my guess too. Nero, Caligula, Diocletian and a number of others were very cruel to Christians.


38 posted on 05/22/2006 12:47:22 AM PDT by gleeaikin
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To: gleeaikin

I doubt poison lasts that long. Unless it was a slow metal based poisoning over a period of at least weeks and their bodies incorporated it in their bones.


39 posted on 05/22/2006 3:10:52 AM PDT by S0122017
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To: blam

Some mad emperor slaughtered a bunch of folks he didn't like and disposed of the corpses?


40 posted on 05/22/2006 5:27:56 AM PDT by Little Ray (I'm a reactionary, hirsute, gun-owning, knuckle dragging, Christian Neanderthal and proud of it!)
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To: Junior
They were pretty intolerant of some things like the cult of Cybele.
All in all, I think it had more to do with cosmopolitanism, than polytheism.
41 posted on 05/22/2006 5:29:48 AM PDT by Little Ray (I'm a reactionary, hirsute, gun-owning, knuckle dragging, Christian Neanderthal and proud of it!)
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To: blam

Bones in Togas - I saw them in concert.


42 posted on 05/22/2006 8:42:27 PM PDT by Barnacle
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To: blam

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43 posted on 01/18/2010 4:52:39 PM PST by SunkenCiv (Happy New Year! Freedom is Priceless.)
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