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Libye antique, un rÍve de marbre

Claude Sintes and Gilles Mermet

In Herodotusí time, the world was divided in three parts: Europe, Asia and Libya. This anecdote, printed in the introduction, underlines todayís unfathomable ignorance of this African country, which can no longer be limited to the few trivial concepts of desert, Gaddafi, oil. Actually, as the author - director as well of the museum of Arles antique- shows, this pivotal country was one of the most beautiful creations of Greek colonialism, then Phoenician and finally Roman. From the limits of Cyrenaica to Tripolitan, covering the inhospitable lands of the Greater Sirte, sumptuous citadels with enchanting names have taken root, such as Leptis Magna, Cyrene, Sabratha, Apolonia. Aside from an impressive built heritage, mosaics of top quality (to be seen in particular at the museum of Tripoli), ancient Libya has left an extraordinary collection of statues that photographs render perfectly. From the surprising, faceless, funerary busts to the most perfected Hermes, Apollo and Graces (to be seen especially at the museum of Cyrene), Libya proves to be more than a member of the OPEC. It is one of the finest references of Antiquity.

ē Libye antique, un rÍve de marbre, by Claude Sintes, photographs by Gilles Mermet, Imprimerie nationale, 2010, 280 p., 75 Ä.

Libye antique, un rÍve de marbre - Claude Sintes and Gilles Mermet

Review published in the newsletter #203 - from 10 February 2011 to 16 February 2011

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