A detail from the “Saffron Gatherers” fresco of the “Xeste 3” building. It is one of many depicting saffron; they were found at the Bronze Age settlement of Akrotiri, on the Aegean island of Santorini.
Saffron is a plant native to Asia Minor, where for centuries it has been cultivated for its aromatic orange-yellow stigmas—one of the world’s most expensive spices. When handpicked and dried, the stigmas yield saffron powder, the source of the principal yellow dye of the ancient world. The plant is still grown in limited quantities for the powder, which is used in medicines and perfumes and for flavoring. How many flowers must be harvested to produce one pound (0.45 kg) of dry saffron? More… Discuss
Posted in Educational, Health and Environment, IN THE SPOTLIGHT, PEOPLE AND PLACES HISTORY, GEOGRAPHY, Uncategorized
Tagged Abruzzo, Akrotiri, Asia Minor, Bronze Age, Greece, Iran, Jovina Coughlin, limited quantities, Picrocrocin, Plant, plant native, Saffron, Saffron Gatherers, saffron powder, Santorini, Sardinia, Spice, Turmeric, Xeste 3
Is nothing sacred? To thieves in Abruzzo, Italy, apparently so. Over the weekend, they broke into a church in the remote village east of Rome and made off with a gold reliquary containing the blood of the late Pope John Paul II and a crucifix. The motive for the theft is not yet known, but it could be financial; the former pope is set to be sainted in May, after which, the value of the stolen relic will increase. More… Discuss
Posted in Educational, IN THE SPOTLIGHT, News, PEOPLE AND PLACES HISTORY, GEOGRAPHY, Uncategorized
Tagged Abruzzo, Catholic Church, Holy See, Italian church, Italy, May, Pope John Paul II, Rome, Theft