Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Nero and Roses

Do you remember any Roman history? I don't. I had to read about it on Wikipedia. Anyway, there was this big fire in Rome about 64 CE. Nobody know how it started, but Nero was accused, because he built the huge Golden House on the ruins. It was a bit of a strange structure. It was covered in gold leaf and frescoes. The ceilings were veneered with semiprecious stones and ivory. It had over 100 rooms, but no restrooms or kitchens. Supposedly he had people there for fabulous dinners, but I don't quite see how you do that if you don't have a place for cooking or peeing. 

The rose story is that Nero liked to let rose petals drift over the diners. But like everything else, it was done to excess. The people dined under a dome. The ceiling was designed to revolve like the heavens, and slaves were used to power it. From this dome, petals were dropped and perfume was sprayed. But, instead of a few baskets of rose petals, it was tons. So many petals that some of his guests smothered and died. Such a host!

One of my neighbors has roses out front. This is a picture from that garden.

No comments: