Taormina in Eastern Sicily is perched on high hills, and features the ruins of a 6th century BC Greek Theater. In this magical view, the backdrop to the amphitheater is provided by the Mediterranean (through an arched portal, but more prominently, by Mt. Etna. The volcano is the highest of all of the volcanic mountains in a country known to have the highest density of volcanoes in the world. In some of my other visits to the island, I’ve seen it with different faces — sometimes spewing toxic gases, other times covered in snow, and other times still completely hidden in mist — but never allowing itself to be taken for granted.
Archimedes (287-212 BC) lived in nearby Syracusa, and was killed during the Second Punic War between the Romans and the Carthaginians. (He was slain by Roman soldier who had not received word that the the life of the great scientist-mathematician was to be spared.) Three centuries earlier, in the 6th century BC, the natural philosopher Empedocles from nearby Agregento jumped into the caldera of Mt. Etna during one of its eruptions — driven by the misbegotten notion that he would become immortal by doing so. Now, perhaps Empedocles knows whether it worked.
For a more recent dramatic event, in 1996 the amphitheater served as the site for the filming of Woody Allen film, 'Mighty Aphrodite.'
In preparing the image for submission to TE, I cropped it to keep an unsightly modern stage from detracting from its ethereal beauty. This is one view that should be presented with a lesser aspect ratio.
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sabyasachi1212 (19773) 2006-10-27 23:35
Beautiful place to be in, truly a magical view. Infact two views - one man made, another created by nature. Its a pity how modern structures come up near heritage sites like these to spoil the show.
Thanks for sharing
With Greetings from India
Henryk_Bilor (20799) 2006-10-29 5:42
Great image. Very good capture of the ruins against the volcano. Nice colours and lighting. A little too bright clouds ;).
stego (24030) 2007-02-01 21:23
While at first it may look like another tourist snapshot, something a bit induced by the low saturation and not so enhanced contrast, by looking more carefully I notice a very wise compo, only aparently too symetric and centered. That symetry is nicely broken by the left and right parts and, of course, with the backdrop of the hazy mountain.
Beautiful photo, showing nicely the ruins in context.
TFS, Regards, José.
Angshu (56572) 2007-12-04 1:35
Hello Professor "A"
This is an older shot where Etna is not fuming, at least on the surface! Fine view with the ancient ruins in the FG creating a window to look beyond. The haze does not allow us to have a clearer view of the mighty volcano, but that's the mystery about it.
With Warmest Regards
BWJ (3086) 2010-01-05 19:28
What a fabulous view -- a very effective POV. The picture is beautiful in terms of composition and a splendid capture of these special ruins. I can scarcely believe only five people took the time to comment on it. Your note is excellent.