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Comments about the soundtrack for Agora (Dario Marianelli)

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Historically illiterate?
• Posted by: Adamoriens
• Date: Monday, March 8, 2010, at 3:38 p.m.
• IP Address: resnet.saultcollege.ca

Secondly, Agora has also been protested by a notable religious lobby for "promoting hatred of Christians," an understandably inevitable reaction to the film's historical depiction about the fall of the Roman Empire and the mass loss of knowledge in Alexandria that resulted from the Christian fervor of the 4th Century. As Christianity spawned religious warfare at the time, much of the world's scientific knowledge, maintained by pagan intellectuals and philosophers in the city's central library, was destroyed because it refuted the growing power of religious doctrine.

Contrary to Mr. Clemmenson's confident claims, historians are still not sure who destroyed the ancient library at Alexandra. There are actually four suspects, among them Julius Caesar and the Moslem Caliph Omar: http://ehistory.osu.edu/world/articles/ArticleView.cfm?AID=9

It is certain that the Christian Roman emperor Theophilus gutted an adjoining pagan temple and converted it to a church, but there is no evidence that he destroyed the thousands of scrolls within the library itself. It is true, though, that Hypatia was probably killed by Christians, although the circumstances are much less clear-cut than Mr. Clemmenson suggests. And I seriously doubt anything in the library "refuted" rising religious doctrine. Perhaps a definition check is in order.

Because she [Hypatia] challenged the notion that the sun revolved around the Earth, she was seen by Christian mobs as being a responsible party in the religious turmoil at the time and executed.

At the very least, the idea that Hypatia was a proponent of heliocentrism could be approximated as laughably ludicrous (alliteration!). With regards to astronomy, she was most certainly a geocentrist and an astrologer. Perhaps if Mr. Clemmenson got his historical narrative from somewhere other than Agora's trailer, we could expect some cogent cultural commentary. Alas, it seems that buffoonery plagues the faithful and agnostic alike.




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