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The latest news happened in 2007 where Italian archaeologists believe that they may have found the cave that Romulus and Remus were born, 16 meters underground in a previously unexplored area during restoration work on the palace of Augustus, the first Roman emperor. This is an exciting discovery because it could potentially prove that this is not a myth story, but history.
The cave is an underground cavity, which may have been a place of worship sacred to ancient Romans who were known as Lupercale (from the Latin word for wolf). As of 2007, archeologists started careful exploration to try to determine if it is in fact the birth place of Romulus and Remus who were said to have founded Rome. As the site is likely over 2,000 years old, caution must be used in the excavation process.
This is copied from from the Daily Telegraph:
Legend has it that Rome was founded by the twin brothers Romulus and Remus, who were raised on the milk of a she-wolf in her cave lair.
A team was using a probe to take samples and photograph the honeycomb core of the city's Palatine hill when they stumbled across the shrine 16 metres below ground.
The cave, known as the Lupercale - Luper is Latin for wolf - was discovered facing the Circus Maximus underneath the palace of the first emperor, Augustus.
"The photographs that the probe sent back showed the most famous place in Roman mythology," said Francesco Rutelli, the Italian culture minister.
"We have been searching for this site for years, and at last everyone can see it."
Walter Veltroni, the mayor of Rome, added: "It is amazing to think that this legendary place has finally become real before our eyes. Rome never ceases to stun the world with this sort of discovery."
The cave was found earlier this year but only now have archaeologists been able to verify it as the Lupercale.
The chamber, which is seven-and-a-half metres high and six metres wide, is studded with seashells and mosaics. Part of the grotto appears natural, while part of it has been built.
It was decorated by Augustus, who wanted to establish a religious cult that celebrated the she-wolf. In the middle of the cave is a marble mosaic of a white eagle, the imperial motif.
Giorgio Croci, the lead archaeologist, said his team "almost screamed" when they realised what they had found. "It is clear that Augustus wanted his residence to be built in a place which was sacred for the city of Rome."
The emperor restored the sanctuary and probably connected it to his own palace, he said.
According to Roman mythology, Romulus and Remus - the sons of a mortal priestess, Rhea Silvia, and Mars, the Roman god of war - were born around 770BC.
The boys were abandoned at birth and thrown into the Tiber in a cradle. They washed up near the Palatine hill and were rescued by a she-wolf, who took them to her cave lair and suckled them.
After being found by the shepherd, Faustulus, and raised to adulthood, the twins decided in 753BC to establish a city. However, they argued about who had the support of the gods, and Romulus killed Remus in a fight on what became the Palatine hill.
The cave played a significant role in ancient Roman life. Dogs and goats were sacrificed every February and the blood smeared on the foreheads of two noble boys as part of a festival. Women would also go there to pray for a pregnancy.
However, with the growth of Christianity, the old beliefs fell by the wayside.
Angelo Bettini, Rome's chief archaeologist, said no one had yet been able to enter the grotto.
Archaeologists are now searching for the cave's original entrance, and will shortly build scaffolding to secure the interior.
Italian archaeologists believe they've done one of the most important discoveries of Roman history.A cave discovered near the ruins of Augustus' palace, which is located on the Palatine hill, could be even the famous cave where the she-wolf nursed the founders of Rome, Romulus and Remus.The cave, which was discovered during restoration of the palace, has a depth of 16 meters and is decorated with shells and mosaics.
According to myth, a she-wolf found Romulus and Remus in the Cave Lupercal and breast feeding them until a shepherd, Faustulus,took them to his home. "This could be the place where was born the myth of Rome, one of the most famous in the world, the legendary cave where a she-wolf nursed Romulus and Remus, saving them from death," said Italian Minister of Culture, Francesco Rutelli.
Romulus (771 BC-717 BC) and Remus (771BC - 753 BC) are the traditional founders of Rome, appearing in Roman mythology as sons of Princess Rhea Silbia and god of war , Mars.
According to writings, after a dispute over their new city, Romulus killed his brother and called the city after him, Rome. Besides the Roman legions and the Roman Senate, Romulus brought to Rome and citizens, kidnapping women from a neighboring tribe of Sabina, resulting a single people. Also, Romulus became the greatest conqueror of Rome, after his death being deified, as the god Quirinus.
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