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Re: Porphyria or Port perplexity?
In Response To: Porphyria or Port perplexity? ()

Since we are considering "Imperial" diseases transmitted via inherited means, as well as the "Imperial Purple", might we also consider "Imperial Porhryry?"

From this site; http://nosheep.net/story/imperial-porphyry/

"The specific porphyry of note in Rome is called “imperial porphyry”. It is a deep reddish purple color with white crystals and is very fine grained. It is excellent for carving. It was “discovered” in Egypt in the year 18 by a Roman legionnaire. The Romans began mining the porphyry using slave labor in AD29 for around 300 years."

So, this "purple" stone was apparently mined until AD / CE 350! Just what is the date of our Neo-platonist with a similar name? He lived c. 232–c. 305!

The site goes on to say;

"What makes imperial porphyry so precious and rare is that it is found at only one place on earth, atop a 1600-meter (mile-high) mountain in the eastern province of Egypt. The Romans named the site Mons Porphyrites, or Porphyry Mountain, and the Arabs today call it Jabal Abu Dukhan, or Smoky Mountain.

Thrust to the earth’s surface in the same volcanic action that once formed the Red Sea, the porphyry found at Mons Porphyrites is, as far as specialists know, geologically unique. But the site is so barren and so remote that only slave labor could ever have extracted the stone, and even then only for the relatively brief historical moment when Roman power was at its zenith."

It appears that the location of this rare and valuable substance was then lost for centuries! How is this explained? Did slavery disappear in Egypt? I don't think so.

Should we also consider "Porphyry of Gaza, a saint and bishop of Gaza circa 347–420?" Note, the site of the stone is in the "eastern provinces of Egypt!" as is, remarkably enough, Gaza! I will leave it up to you to inquire about Porphyry of Gaza. But this site;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Porphyry_of_Gaza

might be enough to inrigue you?

And from the "Imperial Porphry" site is this;

"Rome was not the only city fascinated by this rare and beautiful stone. Constantine the Great celebrated the founding of Constantinople by erecting a 30 meter pillar built from seven porphyry drums. This pillar still stands today in the modern city of Istanbul. There are also columns of porphyry in the beautiful Hagia Sophia. In later history, porphyry remnants found their way to Germany and later England.

After AD 335, the mine was lost. Napoleon searched for it and failed. Later, in 1823, it was rediscovered by British pioneers. It was unsuccessfully mined off and on including the last full scale attempt by Egypt’s Prince Farouk in the 1930’s. He too failed, learning how hard this work was.

In ancient times, porphyry became the symbol of rulership and was used for the finest things crafted in Rome. Of the thousands of tons mined and fashioned primarily into columns, 134 columns remain standing in Italy today."

Because of this from the Gaza site:

"According to the vita, Porphyry, the canonized bishop of Gaza sent Marcus, his deacon and chronicler, to Constantinople in 398, to obtain an order to close the pagan temples of Gaza."

So, it would be obvious that the porphyry that was readily seen in the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople, would be known to Porphyry himself or at least to his deacon Marcus! Certainly Marcus had to visit the greatest church in Eastern Rome to obtain an order? Would anyone in New Rome recognize that the "Imperial Stone" and the name of the Bishop of Gaza, shared the same name?

Could there be some relationship?

Aga-mem-Ron

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Gaza and Porphyry (man or stone?)