Leda and the Swan

Dear Reader,

this is one of my favourite mosaics among those I’ve seen in Paphos in the archeological site Tombs of the Kings.

Mosaic_Leda_Swan_Paphos_Cyprus_Stanito
Leda, Queen of Sparta and wife of Tyndareus. Mother of Helen, who caused the War of Troy.

In most accounts Leda is to be known as mother of Helen, however there are discrepancies on how that happened.
Some say Zeus (in the shape of a swan) generated an egg with Nemesis and that such egg was found by Leda lying in a marsh which she brought home and hid in a chest: from it Helen of Troy was hatched. Others say Zeus generated the egg with Leda herself (theory that inspired the above mosaic) who hid it from her husband until it hatched.

This mosaic along with many others mosaics from the 2nd century are located in a world heritage site called The Tombs of The Kings. This name though is misleading as no royalty ever rested there, only rich citizens did. The site is marvellously decorated by elaborated carvings, Doric and Corinthian columns and with wall-paintings, fit for a king, though.

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Photo of The Day: Torres del Paine

Torres del Paine Stanito©Google, 2013

Dear reader,

are you looking for breath-taking views and quietness? Then southern Chile is the right place for you.
This is a small tribute to one of my much missed home-countries, Chile.

The Torres del Paine National Park, located in the XII Region called Magallanes, is the 5th most beautiful place on earth by National Geographic, was declared by UNESCO in 1978 as a Biosphere Reservoir, no pollution, spectacular landscapes, lakes, flora and fauna.

It used to be a mythical place years ago. Now more and more people are discovering this place, crowds have come along with environmental pressures on this land’s end. So yes, you’ll see lots of tents, campsites and cooking huts. Good news is that finally the CONAF has come up with measures to limit the numbers of visitors in order to mitigate the environmental impacts.

More info on the study is found here.