The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the Mediterranean Basin and completely enclosed by land: on the north by Southern Europe and Anatolia, on the south by North Africa and on the east by the Levant. Although the sea is sometimes considered a part of the Atlantic Ocean, it is identified as a separate body of water. Geological evidence indicates that around 5.9 million years ago, the Mediterranean was cut off from the Atlantic and was or desiccated over a period of some 600,000 years, the Messinian salinity crisis, before being refilled by the Zanclean flood about 5.3 million years ago. It covers an approximate area of 2.5 million km2, representing 0.7 % of the global ocean surface, but its connection to the Atlantic via the Strait of Gibraltar-the narrow strait that connects the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea and separates Spain in Europe from Morocco in Africa- is only 14 km wide. In oceanography, it is sometimes called the Eurafrican Mediterranean Sea or the European Mediterranean Sea to distinguish it from mediterranean seas elsewhere.
The Mediterranean Sea has an average depth of 1,500 m and the deepest recorded point is 5,267 m in the Calypso Deep in the Ionian Sea. The sea is bordered on the north by Europe, the east by Asia, in the south by Africa, it is located between latitudes 30° and 46° N and longitudes 6° W and 36° E. Its west-east length, from the Strait of Gibraltar to the Gulf of Iskenderun, on the southwestern coast of Turkey, is 4,000 km; the sea's average north-south length, from Croatia's southern shore to Libya, is 800 km. The sea was an important route for merchants and travellers of ancient times that allowed for trade and cultural exchange between emergent peoples of the region; the history of the Mediterranean region is crucial to understanding the origins and development of many modern societies. The countries surrounding the Mediterranean in clockwise order are Spain, Monaco, Slovenia, Croatia and Herzegovina, Albania, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco. In addition, the Gaza Strip and the British Overseas Territories of Gibraltar and Akrotiri and Dhekelia have coastlines on the sea.
The Ancient Greeks called the Mediterranean ἡ θάλασσα or sometimes ἡ μεγάλη θάλασσα, ἡ ἡμέτερα θάλασσα, or ἡ θάλασσα ἡ καθ'ἡμᾶς. The Romans called it Mare Mare Internum and, starting with the Roman Empire, Mare Nostrum; the term Mare Mediterrāneum appears later: Solinus used it in the 3rd century, but the earliest extant witness to it is in the 6th century, in Isidore of Seville. It means'in the middle of land, inland' in Latin, a compound of medius, -āneus; the Latin word is a calque of Greek μεσόγειος, from μέσος and γήινος, from γῆ. The original meaning may have been'the sea in the middle of the earth', rather than'the sea enclosed by land'; the Carthaginians called it the "Syrian Sea". In ancient Syrian texts, Phoenician epics and in the Hebrew Bible, it was known as the "Great Sea" or as "The Sea". Another name was the "Sea of the Philistines", from the people inhabiting a large portion of its shores near the Israelites. In Modern Hebrew, it is called HaYam HaTikhon'the Middle Sea'. In Modern Arabic, it is known as al-Baḥr al-Mutawassiṭ'the Middle Sea'.
In Islamic and older Arabic literature, it was Baḥr al-Rūm'the Sea of the Romans' or'the Roman Sea'. At first, that name referred to only the Eastern Mediterranean, but it was extended to the whole Mediterranean. Other Arabic names were Baḥr al-šām'the Sea of Syria' and Baḥr al-Maghrib'the Sea of the West'. In Turkish, it is the Akdeniz'the White Sea'; the origin of the name is not clear, as it is not known in earlier Greek, Byzantine or Islamic sources. It may be to contrast with the Black Sea. In Persian, the name was translated as Baḥr-i Safīd, used in Ottoman Turkish, it is the origin of the colloquial Greek phrase Άσπρη Θάλασσα. Johann Knobloch claims that in Classical Antiquity, cultures in the Levant used colours to refer to the cardinal points: black referred to the north, yellow or blue to east, red to south, white to west; this would explain both the Turkish Akdeniz and the Arab nomenclature described above. Several ancient civilizations were located around the Mediterranean shores and were influenced by their proximity to the sea.
It provided routes for trade and war, as well as food for numerous communities throughout the ages. Due to the shared climate and access to the sea, c
In ancient Greek religion and mythology, Demeter is the goddess of the grain, harvest and nourishment, who presided over grains and the fertility of the earth. Her cult titles include Sito, "she of the Grain", as the giver of food or grain, Thesmophoros, "Law-Bringer", as a mark of the civilized existence of agricultural society. Though Demeter is described as the goddess of the harvest, she presided over the sacred law, the cycle of life and death, she and her daughter Persephone were the central figures of the Eleusinian Mysteries, a religious tradition that predated the Olympian pantheon, which may have its roots in the Mycenaean period c. 1400–1200 BC. Demeter was considered to be the same figure as the Anatolian goddess Cybele, in Rome she was identified as the Latin goddess Ceres, it is possible that Demeter appears in Linear A as da-ma-te on three documents, all three dedicated in religious situations and all three bearing just the name. It is unlikely. On the other hand, si-to-po-ti-ni-ja, "Potnia of the Grain", is regarded as referring to her Bronze Age predecessor or to one of her epithets.
Demeter's character as mother-goddess is identified in the second element of her name meter derived from Proto-Indo-European *méh₂tēr. In antiquity, different explanations were proffered for the first element of her name, it is possible that Da, a word which corresponds to Ge in Attic, is the Doric form of De, "earth", the old name of the chthonic earth-goddess, that Demeter is "Mother-Earth". This root appears in the Linear B inscription E-ne-si-da-o-ne, "earth-shaker", as an aspect of the god Poseidon. However, the dā element in the name of Demeter is not so equated with "earth" according to John Chadwick; the element De- may be connected with Deo, an epithet of Demeter derived from the Cretan word dea, Ionic zeia —variously identified with emmer, rye, or other grains by modern scholars—so that she is the Mother and the giver of food generally. Wanax was her male companion in Mycenaean cult; the Arcadian cult links her to the god Poseidon, who substituted the male companion of the Great Goddess.
An alternative Proto-Indo-European etymology comes through Potnia and Despoina, where Des- represents a derivative of PIE *dem, Demeter is "mother of the house". Demeter was associated with images of the harvest, including flowers and grain, she was sometimes pictured with her daughter Persephone. Demeter is not portrayed with any of her consorts. Demeter is assigned the zodiac constellation Virgo the Virgin by Marcus Manilius in his 1st century Roman work Astronomicon. In art, constellation Virgo holds Spica, a sheaf of wheat in her hand and sits beside constellation Leo the Lion. In Arcadia, she was known as "Black Demeter", she was said to have taken the form of a mare to escape the pursuit of Poseidon, having been raped by him despite her disguise, dressed all in black and retreated into a cave to mourn and to purify herself. She was depicted with the head of a horse in this region. A sculpture of the Black Demeter was made by Onatas. In epic poetry and Hesiod's Theogony, Demeter is the Corn-Mother, the goddess of cereals who provides grain for bread and blesses its harvesters.
This was her main function at Eleusis, became panhellenic. In Cyprus, "grain-harvesting" was damatrizein; the main theme in the Eleusinian mysteries was the reunion of Persephone with her mother Demeter, when new crops were reunited with the old seed, a form of eternity. According to the Athenian rhetorician Isocrates, Demeter's greatest gifts to humankind were agriculture of cereals, the Mysteries which give the initiate higher hopes in this life and the afterlife; these two gifts were intimately connected in Demeter's myths and mystery cults. In Hesiod, prayers to Zeus-Chthonios and Demeter help the crops grow strong. Demeter's emblem is a bright red flower that grows among the barley. Demeter was zeidoros arοura, the Homeric "Mother Earth arοura" who gave the gift of cereals. In addition to her role as an agricultural goddess, Demeter was worshiped more as a goddess of the earth. In Arcadia, she was represented as snake-haired, holding a dove and dolphin to symbolize her power over the underworld, the air, the water.
In the cult of Flya, she was worshiped as one who sends up gifts from the underworld. There was a temple of Demeter under this name in Phlius in Attica. In Sparta, she was known as Demeter-Chthonia; the Athenians called the dead "Demetrioi", this may reflect a link between Demeter and ancient cult of the dead, linked to the agrarian-belief that a new life would sprout from the dead body, as a new plant arises from buried seed. This was a belief shared by initiates in Demeter's mysteries, as interpreted by Pindar: "Happy is he who has seen what exists under the earth, because he knows not only the end of life, but his beginning that the Gods will give". In the mysteries of P
The Ancient Greek language includes the forms of Greek used in Ancient Greece and the ancient world from around the 9th century BCE to the 6th century CE. It is roughly divided into the Archaic period, Classical period, Hellenistic period, it is succeeded by medieval Greek. Koine is regarded as a separate historical stage of its own, although in its earliest form it resembled Attic Greek and in its latest form it approaches Medieval Greek. Prior to the Koine period, Greek of the classic and earlier periods included several regional dialects. Ancient Greek was the language of Homer and of fifth-century Athenian historians and philosophers, it has contributed many words to English vocabulary and has been a standard subject of study in educational institutions of the Western world since the Renaissance. This article contains information about the Epic and Classical periods of the language. Ancient Greek was a pluricentric language, divided into many dialects; the main dialect groups are Attic and Ionic, Aeolic and Doric, many of them with several subdivisions.
Some dialects are found in standardized literary forms used in literature, while others are attested only in inscriptions. There are several historical forms. Homeric Greek is a literary form of Archaic Greek used in the epic poems, the "Iliad" and "Odyssey", in poems by other authors. Homeric Greek had significant differences in grammar and pronunciation from Classical Attic and other Classical-era dialects; the origins, early form and development of the Hellenic language family are not well understood because of a lack of contemporaneous evidence. Several theories exist about what Hellenic dialect groups may have existed between the divergence of early Greek-like speech from the common Proto-Indo-European language and the Classical period, they differ in some of the detail. The only attested dialect from this period is Mycenaean Greek, but its relationship to the historical dialects and the historical circumstances of the times imply that the overall groups existed in some form. Scholars assume that major Ancient Greek period dialect groups developed not than 1120 BCE, at the time of the Dorian invasion—and that their first appearances as precise alphabetic writing began in the 8th century BCE.
The invasion would not be "Dorian" unless the invaders had some cultural relationship to the historical Dorians. The invasion is known to have displaced population to the Attic-Ionic regions, who regarded themselves as descendants of the population displaced by or contending with the Dorians; the Greeks of this period believed there were three major divisions of all Greek people—Dorians and Ionians, each with their own defining and distinctive dialects. Allowing for their oversight of Arcadian, an obscure mountain dialect, Cypriot, far from the center of Greek scholarship, this division of people and language is quite similar to the results of modern archaeological-linguistic investigation. One standard formulation for the dialects is: West vs. non-west Greek is the strongest marked and earliest division, with non-west in subsets of Ionic-Attic and Aeolic vs. Arcadocypriot, or Aeolic and Arcado-Cypriot vs. Ionic-Attic. Non-west is called East Greek. Arcadocypriot descended more from the Mycenaean Greek of the Bronze Age.
Boeotian had come under a strong Northwest Greek influence, can in some respects be considered a transitional dialect. Thessalian had come under Northwest Greek influence, though to a lesser degree. Pamphylian Greek, spoken in a small area on the southwestern coast of Anatolia and little preserved in inscriptions, may be either a fifth major dialect group, or it is Mycenaean Greek overlaid by Doric, with a non-Greek native influence. Most of the dialect sub-groups listed above had further subdivisions equivalent to a city-state and its surrounding territory, or to an island. Doric notably had several intermediate divisions as well, into Island Doric, Southern Peloponnesus Doric, Northern Peloponnesus Doric; the Lesbian dialect was Aeolic Greek. All the groups were represented by colonies beyond Greece proper as well, these colonies developed local characteristics under the influence of settlers or neighbors speaking different Greek dialects; the dialects outside the Ionic group are known from inscriptions, notable exceptions being: fragments of the works of the poet Sappho from the island of Lesbos, in Aeolian, the poems of the Boeotian poet Pindar and other lyric poets in Doric.
After the conquests of Alexander the Great in the late 4th century BCE, a new international dialect known as Koine or Common Greek developed based on Attic Greek, but with influence from other dialects. This dialect replaced most of the older dialects, although Doric dialect has survived in the Tsakonian language, spoken in the region of modern Sparta. Doric has passed down its aorist terminations into most verbs of Demotic Greek. By about the 6th century CE, the Koine had metamorphosized into Medieval Greek. Ancient Macedonian was an Indo-European language at least related to Greek, but its exact relationship is unclear because of insufficient data: a dialect of Greek; the Macedonian dialect (or l
A sickle, bagging hook or reaping-hook, is a hand-held agricultural tool designed with variously curved blades and used for harvesting, or reaping, grain crops or cutting succulent forage chiefly for feeding livestock, either freshly cut or dried as hay. Falx was a synonym but was used to mean any of a number of tools that had a curved blade, sharp on the inside edge such as a scythe. Since the beginning of the Iron Age hundreds of region-specific variants of the sickle have evolved of iron and steel; this great diversity of sickle types across many cultures can be divided into smooth or serrated blades, both of which can be used for cutting either green grass or mature cereals using different techniques. The serrated blade that originated in prehistoric sickles still dominates in the reaping of grain and is found in modern grain-harvesting machines and in some kitchen knives; the development of the sickle in Mesopotamia can be traced back to times that pre-date the Neolithic Era. Large quantities of sickle blades have been excavated in sites surrounding Israel that have been dated to the Epipaleolithic era.
Formal digs in Wadi Ziqlab, Jordan have unearthed various forms of early sickle blades. The artifacts possessed a jagged edge; this intricate ‘tooth-like’ design showed a greater degree of design and manufacturing credence than most of the other artifacts that were discovered. Sickle blades found during this time were made of flint and used in more of a sawing motion than with the more modern curved design. Flints from these sickles have been discovered near Mt. Carmel, which suggest the harvesting of grains from the area about 10,000 years ago; the sickle had a profound impact on the Agricultural Revolution by assisting in the transition to farming and crop based lifestyle. It is now accepted that the use of sickles led directly to the domestication of Near Eastern Wild grasses. Research on domestication rates of wild cereals under primitive cultivation found that the use of the sickle in harvesting was critical to the people of early Mesopotamia; the narrow growing season in the area and the critical role of grain in the late Neolithic Era promoted a larger investment in the design and manufacture of sickle over other tools.
Standardization to an extent was done on the measurements of the sickle so that replacement or repair could be more immediate. It was important that the grain be harvested at the appropriate time at one elevation so that the next elevation could be reaped at the proper time; the sickle provided a more efficient option in collecting the grain and sped up the developments of early agriculture. The sickle remained common both in the Ancient Near East and in Europe. Numerous sickles have been found deposited in hoards in the context of the European Urnfield culture, suggesting a symbolic or religious significance attached to the artifact. In archaeological terminology, Bronze Age sickles are classified by the method of attaching the handle. E.g. the knob-sickle is so called because of a protruding knob at the base of the blade which served to stabilize the attachment of the blade to the handle. The sickle played a prominent role in the Druids' Ritual of oak and mistletoe as described from a single passage in Pliny the Elder's Natural History: Due to this passage, despite the fact that Pliny does not indicate the source on which he based this account, some branches of modern Druidry have adopted the sickle as a ritual tool.
The sickle has been discovered in southwest North America with a unique structure. These sickles are said to have originated from the Far East. There is evidence that Kodiak islanders had for cutting grass “sickles made of a sharpened animal shoulder blade”; the artifacts found in present-day Arizona and New Mexico resemble curved tools that were made from the horns of mountain sheep. A similar site discovered sickles made from other material such as the Caddo Sickle, made from a deer mandible. Scripture from early natives document the use of these sickles in the cutting of grass; the instruments ranged from 13 to 16 inches tip to tip. Several other digs in eastern Arizona uncovered wooden sickles that were shaped in a similar fashion; the handles of the tools help describe how the tool was held in such a way so that the inner portion that contained the cutting surface could serve as a gathering surface for the grain. Sickles were sharpened by scraping a shape beveled edge with a coarse tool; this action has left marks on artifacts.
The sharpening process was necessary to keep the cutting edge from being dulled after extended use. The edge is seen to be quite polished, which in part proves that the instrument was used to cut grass. After collection, the grass was used as material to create bedding; the sickle in general provided the convenience of cutting the grass as well as gathering in one step. In South America, the sickle is used as a tool to harvest rice. Rice clusters are left to dry in the sun; the genealogy of sickles with serrated edge reaches back to the Stone Age, when individual pieces of flint were first attached to a “blade body” of wood or bone. Teeth have been cut with hand-held chisels into iron, steel-bladed sickles for a long time. In many countries on the African continent and South America as well as the Near and Far East this is still the case in the regions within these large geographies where the traditional village blacksmith remains alive and well. En
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and one of the 20 regions of Italy. It is one of the five Italian autonomous regions, in Southern Italy along with surrounding minor islands referred to as Regione Siciliana. Sicily is located in the central Mediterranean Sea, south of the Italian Peninsula, from which it is separated by the narrow Strait of Messina, its most prominent landmark is Mount Etna, the tallest active volcano in Europe, one of the most active in the world 3,329 m high. The island has a typical Mediterranean climate; the earliest archaeological evidence of human activity on the island dates from as early as 12,000 BC. By around 750 BC, Sicily had three Phoenician and a dozen Greek colonies and, for the next 600 years, it was the site of the Sicilian Wars and the Punic Wars. After the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, Sicily was ruled during the Early Middle Ages by the Vandals, the Ostrogoths, the Byzantine Empire, the Emirate of Sicily; the Norman conquest of southern Italy led to the creation of the Kingdom of Sicily, subsequently ruled by the Hohenstaufen, the Capetian House of Anjou and the House of Habsburg.
It was unified under the House of Bourbon with the Kingdom of Naples as the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies. It became part of Italy in 1860 following the Expedition of the Thousand, a revolt led by Giuseppe Garibaldi during the Italian unification, a plebiscite. Sicily was given special status as an autonomous region on 15th May 1946, 18 days before the Italian constitutional referendum of 1946. Albeit, much of the autonomy still remains unapplied financial autonomy, because the autonomy-activating laws have been deferred to be approved by the parithetic committee, since 1946. Sicily has a rich and unique culture with regard to the arts, literature and architecture, it is home to important archaeological and ancient sites, such as the Necropolis of Pantalica, the Valley of the Temples and Selinunte. Sicily has a triangular shape, earning it the name Trinacria. To the east, it is separated from the Italian mainland by the Strait of Messina, about 3 km wide in the north, about 16 km wide in the southern part.
The northern and southern coasts are each about 280 km long measured as a straight line, while the eastern coast measures around 180 km. The total area of the island is 25,711 km2, while the Autonomous Region of Sicily has an area of 27,708 km2; the terrain of inland Sicily is hilly and is intensively cultivated wherever possible. Along the northern coast, the mountain ranges of Madonie, 2,000 m, Nebrodi, 1,800 m, Peloritani, 1,300 m, are an extension of the mainland Apennines; the cone of Mount Etna dominates the eastern coast. In the southeast lie the lower Hyblaean Mountains, 1,000 m; the mines of the Enna and Caltanissetta districts were part of a leading sulphur-producing area throughout the 19th century, but have declined since the 1950s. Sicily and its surrounding small islands have some active volcanoes. Mount Etna is the largest active volcano in Europe and still casts black ash over the island with its ever-present eruptions, it stands 3,329 metres high, though this varies with summit eruptions.
It is the highest mountain in Italy south of the Alps. Etna covers an area of 1,190 km2 with a basal circumference of 140 km; this makes it by far the largest of the three active volcanoes in Italy, being about two and a half times the height of the next largest, Mount Vesuvius. In Greek mythology, the deadly monster Typhon was trapped under the mountain by Zeus, the god of the sky. Mount Etna is regarded as a cultural symbol and icon of Sicily; the Aeolian Islands in the Tyrrhenian Sea, to the northeast of mainland Sicily form a volcanic complex, include Stromboli. The three volcanoes of Vulcano and Lipari are currently active, although the latter is dormant. Off the southern coast of Sicily, the underwater volcano of Ferdinandea, part of the larger Empedocles volcano, last erupted in 1831, it is located between the island of Pantelleria. The autonomous region includes several neighbouring islands: the Aegadian Islands, the Aeolian Islands and Lampedusa; the island is drained by several rivers, most of which flow through the central area and enter the sea at the south of the island.
The Salso flows through parts of Enna and Caltanissetta before entering the Mediterranean Sea at the port of Licata. To the east, the Alcantara flows through the province of Messina and enters the sea at Giardini Naxos, the Simeto, which flows into the Ionian Sea south of Catania. Other important rivers on the island are the Platani in the southwest. Sicily has a typical Mediterranean climate with mild and wet winters and hot, dry summers with changeable intermediate seasons. On the coasts the south-western, the climate is affected by the African currents and summers can be scorching. Sicily is seen as an island of warm winters but above all along the Tyrrhenian coast and in the inland areas, winters can be cold, with typical continental climate. Snow falls in abundance above 900–1000 metres, but stronger cold waves can carry it in the hills and in coastal cities on the northern coast of the island; the interi
Baal Hammon, properly Baʿal Ḥammon or Ḥamon, was the chief god of Carthage. He was a weather god considered responsible for the fertility of vegetation and esteemed as King of the Gods, he was depicted as a bearded older man with curling ram's horns. Baʿal Ḥammon's female cult partner was Tanit; the worship of Baʿal Hammon flourished in the Phoenician colony of Carthage. His supremacy among the Carthaginian gods is believed to date to the fifth century BC, after relations between Carthage and Tyre were broken off at the time of the Battle of Himera. Modern scholars identify him variously with Dagon. In Carthage and North Africa Baʿal Hammon was associated with the ram and was worshiped as Baʿal Qarnaim in an open-air sanctuary at Jebel Boukornine across the bay from Carthage, in Tunisia; the interpretatio graeca identified him with the Titan Cronus. In ancient Rome, he was identified with Saturn, the cultural exchange between Rome and Carthage as a result of the Second Punic War may have influenced the development of the festival of Saturnalia.
Greco-Roman sources report that the Carthaginians burned their children as offerings to Baʿal Hammon. Attributes of his Romanized form as an African Saturn indicate; the meaning of "Hammon" is unclear. In the 19th century, when Ernest Renan excavated the ruins of Hammon, the modern Umm al-‘Awamid between Tyre and Acre, he found two Phoenician inscriptions dedicated to El-Hammon. Since El was identified with Cronus, Ba‘al Hammon was identified with Cronus, it seemed possible they could be equated. More a connection with Northwest Semitic ḥammān has been proposed, suggesting the sense "Lord of the Brazier", he has been therefore identified with a solar deity. Yigael Yadin thought him to be a moon god. Edward Lipinski identifies him with the god Dagon. Frank Moore Cross argued for a connection to Hamōn, the Ugaritic name for Mount Amanus, a peak in the Nur Mountains which separate Syria from Cilicia. Ba'al Hamon was a place mentioned in the Song of Solomon, it was the location of a productive vineyard owned by Solomon, who let out the vineyard to tenants, each of whom was to bring him a thousand silver shekels.
The locale has been supposed to be identical with Baal-gad, with Hammon in the tribe of Asher. Ba'al Carthaginian religion Easton's Bible Dictionary 1897 On-line parallel Bible: Song of Solomon 8:11
Erice is a historic town and comune in the province of Trapani in Sicily, southern Italy. The main town of Erice is located on top of Mount Erice, at around 750 metres above sea level, overlooking the city of Trapani, the low western coast towards Marsala, the dramatic Punta del Saraceno and Capo San Vito to the north-east, the Aegadian Islands on Sicily's north-western coast. Casa Santa forms part of Erice at the base of Mount Erice adjacent to Trapani. A cable car joins lower parts of Erice; the bordering municipalities are Buseto Palizzolo, Trapani and Custonaci. The hamlets are Ballata, Casa Santa, Napola, Rigaletta, San Cusumano and Torretta; the ancient Greek name of Erice was Eryx, its foundation was associated with the eponymous Greek hero Eryx. It was not a Greek colony, as the Phoenicians founded it, but was Hellenized, it was destroyed in the First Punic War by the Carthaginians, from on declined in importance. Eryx was renamed as Cebel Hamid, it was ruled by the Arabs until the Norman conquest.
In 1167 the Normans renamed it Monte San Giuliano, a name maintained until 1934. In the northeastern portion of the city there are the remains of ancient Elymian and Phoenician walls indicating different stages of settlement and occupation in antiquity. There are two castles that remain in the city: Pepoli Castle, which dates from Saracen times, the Venus Castle, dating from the Norman period, built on top of the ancient Temple of Venus, where Venus Ericina was worshipped. According to legend, the temple was founded by Aeneas, it was well known throughout the Mediterranean area in the ancient age, an important cult was celebrated in it. In his book On the Nature of Animals, Aelian writes that animals chosen for sacrifice would voluntarily walk up to the altar to be killed. A cable car ran from 2005 to 2017, when it was closed due to a forest fire, from the outskirts of Trapani to the town of Erice; the cablecar was rebuilt and reopened in June 2018. Erice hosts scientific meetings at the Ettore Majorana center, organised by the controversial astrophysicist Antonino Zichichi.
There is an annual workshop on Molecular Gastronomy. Panoramic view from Erice castle Erice Photo Essay