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"Bathhouse dating to the 12th century found in Spanish bar"

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"Archeologists have uncovered the remains of a 12th century bathhouse at a popular bar in the city of Seville, southern Spain.

"Cerveceria Giralda has been operating in the heart of the city since 1923, but the bar is housed in a building with a far longer history.

"While the vaulted ceilings suggested it could have been a bathhouse, and historical records said there had been one in the area, no one had found concrete evidence of its existence, archeologist Fernando Amores of the University of Seville told CNN Thursday.

"Now skylights and red geometric paintings dating from the 12th century have been uncovered during recent renovation work.

"In the 12th century, Seville was ruled by the Almohad caliphate, a North African Berber Muslim empire, which controlled much of the Iberian peninsula -- modern day Spain and Portugal -- at the time.

"Amores was part of a team of experts that collaborated on the restoration of what he called a 'very unusual' find.

"The skylights are made in the form of eight-pointed stars, and the red ocher paintings make up interlinking geometric patterns.

"The star-shaped windows are typical of hammams, and there are four different kinds in different sizes, said Amores. However, the fact that the paintings completely covered the walls and ceiling is unusual, he added.

" 'It forms a beautiful sky,' said Amores, with light streaming through the windows reminiscent of the stars at night.

"The complicated craftsmanship shows the importance of the bathhouse, which was located close to the city's main mosque when it was built, he said.

"There is more restoration work to be done, said Amores, but additional funding will be needed.

"Archeologists are also carrying out carbon dating on the stucco -- a fine plaster -- to get a more precise date of construction, added Amores.

"The project has been a collaboration between the owners of the building, the owners of the bar and the team of archeologists, said Amores, explaining that the whole process has been a triumph of cooperation.

" 'We are very happy,' he said.

"The owners decided to carry out some renovation work last summer, a spokesperson for the bar told CNN. Until then, the original features had been covered up by a layer of decoration installed at the beginning of the 20th century.

"As the work revealed evidence of the bathhouse, archeologists were brought in to supervise, the spokesperson added. The baths had at least three rooms, they said, which are now used as a kitchen and two dining rooms.

"Architect Francisco Diaz told local TV station Canal Sur that archeologists didn't initially find anything of interest, but then one skylight was found in the ceiling. "From there it was like drawing back a veil and all of the skylights started to appear," said Diaz.

"Cerveceria Giralda serves tapas and beer, and is well-known in Seville.

" 'We think it (the bar) could open to the public in a month, combining restaurant operations with possible visits at certain times,' said the spokesperson."

Courtesy of CNN
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Bill_I_Am

I'm glad you liked it, stunned. Something different for a change. And you're welcome!

What a very interesting and informative post. Thanks so much for this one.

Bill_I_Am

Especially when you find a surprise like this in plain sight, as it were. You're welcome, Gayle.

Audslibrary

Bill, there's a very good reason. Seal of Solomon/Star of David (today on Israeli flag) is the 6-pointed star. Actually it is known generally as the "Star of David" but to Muslims it is older, it is the Seal of Solomon. "The Seal of Solomon is the signet ring attributed to King Solomon in medieval Arabic tradition, from which it developed in Islamic and Jewish mysticism and in Western occultism. It is the predecessor of the Star of David, which became the symbol of the Jewish people in modern times." Now I'm clear myself.

Bommom

It must be fun to be an archeologist. Thanks, Bill.

Bill_I_Am

Oh, my. I don't know why I thought the Star of Solomon was the eight-pointed star of the Arabs/Islam. Thanks for setting me straight. :-|

Audslibrary

Star of Solomon / Seal of Solomon is a 6-pointed star. . . two Triangles, one of them is rotated. Yes, is is sacred/historic in many cultures/religious traditions.

Bill_I_Am

You're welcome, Cyndi.

Bill_I_Am

I thought so too, RandyWI!

Bill_I_Am

What a cool coincidence that you visited this very bar, Audrey! That sacred star is also known as the Star of Soloman.

Isaly2

What an interesting find. Thanks for the information about the baths....

RandyWI

Very, very cool!

Audslibrary

Well, I'm not quite old enough to have bathed in this bathhouse (Hamam in Arabic), but I certainly did eat tapas in this bar when staying in this quarter of Seville back in the early 1990s. The floor tile we're looking at here is based on 8 pointed star, constructed as is clear to see with two square (quadrilaterals) and one of them is rotated. Want a 12-pointed star? Add another square. It's all about the geometry.

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