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Old 7th December 2017, 10:39 AM
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The Irreverent Mr Black The Irreverent Mr Black is offline
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Default ROME: Biodiversity Through Beast-Baiting? The Colosseum Jungle

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...botanists came up with a seemingly unlikely explanation: These rare flowers had been brought as seeds on the fur and in the stomachs of animals like lions and giraffes. Romans shipped these creatures from Africa to perform and fight in the arena. Deakin takes care to mention in Flora of the Colosseum of Rome that the “noble and graceful animals from the wilds of Africa ... let loose in their wild and famished fury, to tear each other to pieces”—along with “numberless human beings.” As the animals fought and died in the arena, they left their botanical passengers behind to flourish and one day overtake the building itself.

This incredible piece of conjecture is hard to prove, but it shows just how much of the story of a ruined place can be found growing in the cracks between broken stones.
Fascinating stuff @ source
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