Ancient Roman Barbecue In Sicily

This mosaic scene from the Roman Villa del Casale at Piazza Armerina features hunters at an altar for the goddess of the hunt, wild animals, moon, and childbirth, i.e. the Roman Diana or Greek Artemis. The Roman Villa, a UNESCO site, is better described as an ancient plantation. Scholars believe that the original owner was in the business of wild animal procurement to supply the Empire with large animals for the infamous gladiator exhibitions presented at arenas around the Mediterranean. The main theme of the scenes presented on the 3-4th century AD mosaic tile floors of the public rooms of the mansion deals with animals and hunting (almost a sales catalogue, if you will!), thus Diana was probably an important diety for our empresario.

… And yes, they are having a barbecue!

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