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Temple Of Venus Baalbek Lebanon

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The Temples of Jupiter, Bacchus, and Venus are the largest temples on the site in terms of architecture. The sheer size of these has presented a conundrum for archaeologists, who are always theorizing about how boulders of this enormity might have been cut and erected. For instance, the Jupiter temple is encircled by 54 columns that rise about 23 meters tall and are regarded to be among the world's tallest. The temple of Bacchus distinguishes out from the others due to its excellent preservation and intricate sculptures dating all the way back to the Roman Empire. Ruins of Baalbek | Francisco Antunes / Flickr

Eventually, the temple was converted into a church dedicated to Saint Barbara. According to (very recent) Christian tradition, she was the daughter of Dioscorus, a Heliopolitan dignitary who continued to worship the ancient gods. When he discovered Barbara had been baptized, he murdered her and was instantly hit by lightning. Saint Barbara is still invoked today by anyone seeking protection from lightning, and it is probable that this is a continuation of the old Hadad religion. The temple of Venus is relatively well-preserved because to its continuing usage. The cult has persisted nearly entirely on the same location, as shown by the presence of a modest mosque next to the Venus temple. Close by, the Greek-Orthodox church of Baalbek is still devoted to Saint Barbara.

Bacchus' Temple is likewise Corinthian in style. 23 of the 42 columns that make up its peripheral colonnade have collapsed. Although its symbolic ornamentation indicates that it was devoted to the same agricultural gods as the major temple, the interior's predominance of bacchic motifs suggests the practice of a salvational secret religion. Among the other ruins are a circular Temple of Venus, remnants of the town walls, evidence of a Hermes temple, significant Roman mosaics from private residences, a damaged mosque with repurposed ancient material, and large Arab defenses. Baalbek, the contemporary town near to the ruins, is Al-primary Biq's urban center. Tourism has developed into a significant part of the economy. A museum (built in 1998) is housed in tunnels under the Temple of Jupiter's courtyard, and the temple complex hosts the annual Baalbeck International Festival, which features musical and theatrical events throughout the summer. Baalbek is situated in one of the most productive agricultural zones in the region. Population: 29,200 (2002 est. ); 30,916 (2014 est.).

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