Wednesday, October 24, 2012

2012 SFC Turkey- the Asclepium

At the foot of the mountain that is home to the ancient site of Pergamon lies one of the (if I remember correctly) five hospitals of the ancient world- the Sanctuary of Asclepius, the god of healing...better known as the Asclepium.

Looking up toward the ruins of Pergamon.

Patients with health problems walked  this colonnade toward treatment.

Looking down the colonnade toward the Temple of Zeus on the hill.

In the background, you can see the Roman theatre that could seat 3500.

It is still used today.

The healed often made dedications, many of which still remain.

Galen, the most famous doctor of ancient Rome, worked at the Asclepium for many years.  He would have stood under these columns, prescribing water cures and interpreting dreams.

Patients would fall asleep in a grotto off one of these many passages.

They would be awakened and asked about their dreams.  Dreams, it seems, were a method of working out struggles within the patient.  And so long before Dr. Freud!!!!!!

An ancient hospital, already using what we would consider "modern" methods.  There really is nothing new under the sun....

And it always helps to have a friend along for the ride.


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