Ear of Dionysus in Syracuse

Ear of Dionysus in Syracuse

Isiwal - CC4.0


 Via del Teatro Greco- Siracusa (SR)

The Ear of Dionysius of the Neapolis Archaeological Park, also known as Ear of Dionysius, is the most famous of the caves that open on the northern front of the Latomia del Paradiso. The name of the cave, according to tradition, was chosen by Caravaggio.
The cave is about 23 meters high and, at the base, 11 meters wide, with walls converging to forming a slightly rounded pointed arch, the cave develops in depth for 65 m.
The cave owes its shape to the way it was built: the excavation began from above, following the sinuous path of an aqueduct, and it widened as it went deeper, following the course of the limestone vein. As in the nearby Grotta dei Cordari and Grotta del Salnitro , the signs of the working of the rock and the detachment of the blocks are clearly visible on the walls.
The acoustics of Dionisio's ear is truly unique in the world: even a whisper resounds throughout the walls. Some scholars even believe that, given this characteristic, the quarry also served as a "sounding board" for the Theater.
Linked to the cave is the legend of the tyrant Dionysius which is he says he used the acoustics of the cave to listen to the speeches of his prisoners.

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