monumental structures

Despite the mountain’s brittle screams and wails of condemnation, making every effort to throw this evil into cold oblivion, in the hopes to drown it in the relentless storms that carried their rage.

This wraith persisted, defied, fought through the obstacles the mountains presented to it. Serpentine, were the movements. But it was far from graceful, there was no grace in describing such a abomination. With every step, climbing ever closer to the place where this creature’s previous life began. 

A ledge he found, in the frozen peaks he stood. Anchored to the cliff face he saw through the snow-blanched veil and glimpsed monumental structures in the distance. 

The mountains could not hide such secrets from him and alas the curtain fell.

Flags dancing with the winds atop spires of gold, brick work as white as the snow that fell. Chimes, songs of the pure. He heard them. Yes he heard them. 

It stirred something in his thoughts, deja vu brought on by the memories of the day he first looked upon this place. Kamar-Taj.

For a moment his body shook, feathered mantel ruffled, spine cracked and the black eyeless snakes that licked and clung to his shadow and his form, wreathed in excitement….he could smell the magic that emanated from it. 

Multitudes of piecing eyes revealed themselves in the folds of his cloak….something foul clung to the stark figure like a parasite. He was wrought with something incurable, something wretched.

But….he had returned baptised in the blood of the Old Gods…

It was only a matter of time before the old magus reached the holy ground and consumed the light there as well…..

for he only knew of the abyss…and slept in the dreams of his masters who dwell there.

X

Part 1

Part 3

anonymous asked:

Humans are weird, for that joke about interacting with statues? Like if there is a statue of a person, people will always go pose with it, or fist bump it, or whatever? Or it's funny to put a hat on the statue? You know?

ooooh my gosh I know exactly what you mean! Like when people will take pictures with the leaning tower and pretend to be holding it up! Yeah I getcha. 


The human students aboard the Education Vessel Athena had a very important tradition whenever they traveled to a new planet to learn more about the culture of the inhabitants. 

It was less of a tradition and more like a competition among the human students really. 

‘Who can take the best posed picture’

Every time a new school year started with new students, the non humans always floundered whenever the humans would excitedly point at a monument or structure in the distance and pull out their tablet devices. Why were the humans so excited about a particular statue that had no meaning to the humans other than it’s shape or color?

“Hey Grackar come here!” One human, Tammy, yelled to the Florpian as their class took a break from the touring lecture they were being subjected to while visiting the planet Zanderklees. It was a lovely planet with a long history of giving their excess to their neighboring planets. The planet was so rich, both economically and ecologically, that many warring aliens had attempted time and time again to invade it only for the Zanderkees beings to pull out hidden technology and blast the invaders out of their orbit. 

Gracker slowly approached the human Tammy as she continued to wave xem over. 

“Good! Ok I need you to stand here and do this pose.” Tammy wend down on one knee and then held both arms up and out to one side, her head turned into the crook of one elbow. 

Gracker didn’t understand, but xey did as asked. 

“Perfect! Oh my gosh Tammy this is gonna be perfect!” Ben said as he quickly started taking pictures with his tablet. 

When he was done Ben quickly took the tablet over to Gracker and Tammy. At first Gracker didn’t understand what it was xe was looking at, but then it dawned on xem. Where the tip of xis appendage and Tammy’s fingers met the statue behind them looked like it was stepping up onto their touching digits. Their appendages blocked out the stone steps that the statue was actually standing on. 

“We’re going to win the contest for sure with this!” Tammy cooed in glee. “Hey Gracker, you like chocolate right?”

Gracker had tried chocolate once and it had been an interesting confection so xe wasn’t adverse with trying more. So Xe nodded. 

“Great! When we win we’ll split the chocolate haul three ways.” The humans were pleased with with themselves and explained the entire thing to the Florpian. It was decided, while the tour resumed, that Gracker would join the two humans from then on whenever they would partake in the human tradition of Picture Posing. 

A pyramid (from Greek: πυραμίς pyramis) is a structure whose outer surfaces are triangular and converge to a single point at the top. The base can be trilateral, quadrilateral, or any polygon shape. As such, a pyramid has at least 3 outer triangular surfaces and at least 4 faces including the base. The square pyramid with square base and 4 triangular outer surfaces is a common version. The design with the majority of the weight closer to the ground and the pyramidion on top means that less material higher up will be pushing down. This weight distribution allowed early civilizations to create stable monumental structures. It has been demonstrated that the common shape of the pyramids of antiquity, from Egypt to Central America, represents a dry-stone construction that requires minimum human work.

Pyramids have been built by civilizations in many parts of the world. The largest by volume is the Great Pyramid of Cholula in Mexico. For thousands of years, the largest structures on Earth were pyramids—first the Red Pyramid in the Dashur Necropolis, then the Great Pyramid of Khufu, both in Egypt - the latter is the only one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World still remaining.

Khufu is built mainly of limestone, with large red granite blocks used in some interior chambers. It is considered an architectural masterpiece and contains over 2,000,000 blocks ranging from 2.5 to 15 tons. It is built on a square base with sides measuring about 230 m, covering 13 acres. Its 4 sides face the 4 cardinal points precisely; it has an angle of 52 degrees. Its original height was 146.5 m, but today it is only 137 m due to theft of the fine quality white Tura limestone covering for construction in Cairo. It is still the tallest.

flickr

segovia autumn castle by mariusz kluzniak   

© Mariusz Kluzniak


Architecture (Part 8): Greco-Roman Temples

A Hellenistic Macedonian family ruled Egypt during the Ptolemaic Dynasty (305-30 BC).  Under their rule, a revival of Egyptian traditions & forms occurred, but with a change – instead of the temples’ previous “public majesty”, they were now darkened and mysterious.  Large building projects were carried out, temples were rebuilt or enlarged, and Egyptian religious beliefs were preserved by the foreigners.

The basic elements of temple construction & room arrangement were still used, with the pronaos and a free-standing central sanctuary (instead of against the back wall) added to them.  Under the later kings of this dynasty, the temples still provided a strong social function, serving as the town’s focus, and giving it administrative & economic value as well as spiritual value.

The Temple of Edfu was built from sandstone on the Nile’s west bank in Edfu, over a period of 180 years.  Its layout was complex, but streamlined.

Temple of Edfu.

Statues of Horus outside the entrance (close-up).

Stairways inside the pylons led to the roof.  The entrance led to a large courtyard, after which was the pronaos, hypostyle hall, small antechamber, and finally a free-standing sanctuary, surrounded by a corridor.

Decorative hieroglyphic texts state that the temple was built according to the ancient ideal, which re-emphasized its dedication to the cult.

Edfu was dedicated to Horus (the falcon god), and displays all the typical major temple elements: broken-lintel doorway (two partial lintels reach only a short way, with a large gap in the middle); elaborate column capitals; a screen wall across the hypostyle hall; and the roof was used for ritual.

A winged sun-disc over the pylon entrance represented Behdet, the creator & protector of the world.  The courtyard is flanked by colonnaded porticoes.  It gave an impressive public aspect to the temple, with elaborate, brightly-decorated capitals, and the large statue of Horus as a falcon at the back.

Courtyard (looking back to the pylons).

The pronaos was also called the Hall before the Great Seat”. This is the temple’s fore-hall (i.e. before the hypostyle hall).  It has three rows of six columns each.  The only light came in through a square aperture in the roof, thus emphasizing the transition between the physical & spiritual worlds.

Behind the first row of columns is a screen wall, to restrict the amount of light entering the pronaos.  This created an environment for cleansing before approaching the sanctuary.  The screen wall is made of thin stone, and is highly-decorated with images of the king & queen, cult themes, and mythological motifs, thus emphasizing the cult of the pharaoh.

In the courtyard, looking to the first row of columns.

Hypostyle hall.

The Temple of Hathor in the Dendera Temple Complex was built during the 00’s BC.  The columns supporting its hypostyle hall were crowned with 4-sided Hathor-head capitals.  The upper part of the capitals depicted the mammisi (birth house), which was identified with divine descent.  Hathor was the goddess of love.

Temple of Hathor.

Columns in the hypostyle hall.

The cornice was a projecting ornamental moulding, on along the top of pylons and temple walls.  It was a standard part of Egyptian decoration.  The earliest designs were simple mud-brick and reed, and later elaborate designs were of detailed cult symbolism, such as the striking cobra and sun-disc.  Cornices gave elegance to monumental structures.

flickr

details by Jeremy Sorrells
Via Flickr:
Victorian mansion in Memphis, TN  

© Jeremy Sorrells

Ancients Meeting the Sun Trio
  • Britannia: I heard that we’re meeting new empires today… I wonder how they are…?

  • Rome: I hope you don’t scare them.

  • Britannia: what is THAT supposed to mean, idiot??

  • Aztec: HEY EVERYONE!!! Nice ta meet ya!
  • 
Rome: oh hey, you just be the new empires! What’re your names?
  • 
Aztec: The name’s Aztec and I used to live in present day Mexico! Oh, let me introduce my other friends over here! This is Maya, she’s the knowledgable one!
  • 
Maya: hi~
  • 
Aztec: and this is Inca, he’s quiet at times, but he’s crazy about administrating and stuff… Which I don’t really get, but oh well! 

  • Inca: hello there…
  • 
Aestii: hello~ are you all well known? I haven’t seen any of your faces before~
  • 
Maya: we are, but we live in Mesoamerica…
  • 
Most of Ancients: ….. Wut?
  • 
China: oh yeah, you guys weren’t here when the world finally knows about them-aru. They live in the Americas, and they were very well known empires in the Americas! They’re also good at math and astronomy as well.
  • 
Greece: oh… I see… Do you read?
  • 
Aztec: …. Nope! What’s that?
  • 
Britannia: HA! I’m not the only illiterate one here anymore!!
  • 
Maya: we use quipu and drawings instead…. But I really love math and astronomy… Especially architecture~
  • 
Greece: …. Math….. I’m more into philosophy though….
  • 
Anatolia: hmmm…. What are your favourite hobbies?
  • 
Inca: I like to build roads and govern.
  • 
Rome: you like roads too?!? Nice!! We’re going to be great friends!!
  • 
Persia: I love to govern too, tell me what you do.
  • 
Aztec: I like to conquer, pillage, and get offerings!
  • 
Britannia: pillaging and conquer… I like your style.
  • 
Gaul: this guy is amazing!
  • 
Carthage: how do you maintain your empire with only conquering and pillaging?
  • 
Aztec: I have my ways… And I’m really good at it!
  • 
Egypt: …. Architect?
  • 
Maya: yes, I love building stone monuments and pyramidal structures~
  • 
Egypt: …… We are now good friends…..
  • 
Maya: … Eh?
  • 
Egypt: do you like sacrifices?
  • 
Scandia: what kind of question is that??
  • 
Inca, Maya, and Aztec: YEAH!!
  • 
Germania: …. Very straight forward….
  • 
Maya: we also love the sun!
  • 
Inca: the sun is the best….
  • 
Egypt: …. Very good friends….
  • 
Rome: do you dislike anything?? You guys seem to like nearly everything…
  • 
Aztec: well, there are two people we don’t like…. Absolutely hate, actually!
  • 
Iberia: really? Who~? But you should love everyone…~
  • 
Maya: we don’t like Spain and Portugal.
  • 
Inca: they’re the worst. Destroying our empire, and later on, our existence!
  • 
Aztec: always saying that they’re the best when they actually just want our gold…. Which I don’t EVEN HAVE!!! Those are the kind of barbarians we hate! Ugh!
  • 
Iberia: ……………….
  • 
China: oh……
  • 
Rome: ….. Ermmmm….
  • 
Britannia: ….. Hmmmm….
  • 
Pontus: ……… Iberia……?
  • 
Maya: hm? What’s wrong?
  • 
Inca: did Spain and Portugal get you too? Though…. You guys are older than us…
  • 
Iberia: well…. They’re… Erm…. My sons….. 

  • Inca, Maya, and Aztec: ………………………… We can’t be friends then.
  • 
Iberia: nooooooooooo, waiitttttt~ *cries*
  • 
Maya: we’re okay with others, though…
  • 
Gaul: I see… So wanna go hunting?
  • 
Aztec: Yeah! Sure!
  • 
Iberia: wait…. Please like meeeeeeee~