Museum. SYRACUSE. 35. Route. 295
Bernard Cabrera. Charles V. established an arsenal at Svracuse and caused tie
fortifications of the isthmus to be constructed with material from the ruins
of the theatre and other Creek edifices. Here in 1676, after the battle of
Agosta, the celebrated naval hero De Ruyter died and was interred in the
Plemmyrium. In consequence of the fearful scenes enacted durin^ the pre¬
valence of the cholera in 1837 and an insurrection against the "overnment
the prefecture was transferred from Syracuse to Noto. In 1865~, however'
the city was again elevated to the rank of a capital of a province and now
begins to resume a share of its former dignity.
A few only of the attractions of Syracuse lie within tlie pre¬
cincts of the modern town on the island, the ancient Ortygia;
most of them are situated on the rocky plateau to the X.W.. the
site of the original city. The plain of the Anapos and a few
other more distant points also merit a visit. This order is ob¬
served in the following description.
The Cathedral stands on the site and between the columns
of a Doric temple. The columns with their capitals are still seen
projecting from the sides of the church. The temple was a
peripteral hexastyle on a basement of three steps; length IT").
width 69 ft. Of the 36 columns 13 only are visible on the X.
and 9 on the S. side. They are 27 ft. in height and 61'4 ft. in
thickness. It is not known to whom the temple was dedicated.
From its proximity to the Arethusa, it was probably a temple of
Diana. Local tradition terms it a Temple of Minerva, but the
temple of that goddess, described by Cicero, in his speeches
against Verres, as a sumptuous edifice containing the most costly
treasures, most probably stood at the S.E. extremity of the
island. The interior is of no great interest. The pilasters sepa¬
rating the nave from the aisles occupy the place of tlie ancient
walls of the cella. The font, formerly in S. Oiovanni. consists
of an antique marble basin with traces of a Greek inscription.
Tlie *Museum is opposite the X. side of the cathedral (ad¬
mission daily 8—1 o'clock). The director is On-. Targia; the
custodian Sulci. Politi, who offers drawings on papyrus, models etc
(1—2 1.) for sale (comp. p. 2'JH). The most interesting- object
is the celebrated * Statue of Vtnus. found by \l. Landolina in
1S04 in tlie Bonavia garden. Tlie marble is admirabh treated.
and the statue, somewhat above life--ize, almost entirely preser¬
ved with the exception of the head. The character is that of
the early ideals of Venus. A colossal * Head of Zeus, an an¬
cient torso of a male figure, a Greek tomb-relief (boy and old
man), and a statue of ,<Esculapius are also remarkable. 'Then a
Head of the Medusa in bronze, inscriptions, vases, terracottas and
Roman statues from the Pmonfardeci garden (p. 299 i. of inferior