05 June 2008

Roman Ruins in Latakkia

If you're into Roman ruins, be sure to visit the National Museum in Latakkia when you come here. I took some pictures of some ancient statues outside (no photography allowed inside). I did manage to get a picture of the nude male before my film was used up, but didn't get the nude female. Just my luck.

The main building is from the Roman era, and has the classic Roman vaulted rooms, which I'd seen pictures of, but had never seen in person before. An aesthetically beautiful design--I'm almost sad that it's not practical or structurally necessary anymore.

I noticed that the junction of the vaulted ceilings didn't have any spandrels. Gould was wrong, and Dennett was right! Actually, Gould should have been deeply ashamed of his spandrels argument. Not only was he dead wrong in his example (and in a way that is ridiculously easy to demonstrate), he perpetually--I think purposefully--conflated adaptations with features that weren't adaptations. I remember reading his article, and his claim that the cleft in the chin wasn't an adaptation, just a point where the two jawbones met, and thinking, "That's his argument? That something no one has ever claimed is a selected-for adaptation is, in fact, not an adaptation?" I never saw a case where he disputed another biologist's claim about a feature being an adaptation.

All that, just from looking at an old Roman building in Latakkia. I may be over-educated.

P.S. and I still can't view my own blog. I'm told "It is forbidden." Keep that in mind, you infidels--who knows what harm could befall you from reading this blog. Who knows, you may all turn from God and rebel against your government. Don't say I didn't warn you.

5 comments:

MARTIN BRANT said...

Interesting article. There's nothing more fascinating than ancient Roman and Greek history, especially when you consider the backward centuries that fell between that era and the 1800's.

James K said...

First Saladin's tomb, and now Roman ruins, I am so jealous.

James Hanley said...

Someone's jealous of me? It happens so rarely. I'm just a kid from a no stop-light farm town.

James K said...

Perhaps, but in New Zealand the only things that are older than 200 years are trees.

Inge said...

Good job! :)