Cosmic Multicultural Bucharest in the Pandemic (4):
A Ray from Babylon
By Andrei Dorian Gheorghe (astro-photo-poem-essay) and Florin Alexandru Stancu (design)
In the winter of 2021 (on January 5th) I went to see an interesting church, made in 1727 by the ruler of Wallachia, Nicolae Mavrocordat (who came from the Greek-Byzantine neighborhood of Ottoman Istanbul, Phanar, where the Christian Orthodox Patriarch of Constantinople had his headquarters).
The exterior of this church was painted with prophets and prophetesses who had anticipated the coming of the Christian Savior, a reason for which it was nicknamed the “Church of Saints and Sibyls”.
Unfortunately, the paintings have eroded in time and I found in acceptable condition only paintings with two saints (whose names, written in the Cyrillic alphabet, were indecipherable for me) and the painting with Persian Sibyl, by far the best preserved.
“You have to know that the original name
of Persian Sybil was Babylonian Sibyl!” -
my star friend from the sky Procyon
told me a little later (on 12 February 2021).
“The stars were deities for ancient Babylonians
and even I was Nangar the Carpenter for them,
a variant of their god Marduk, the Calf of the Sun.
But because today I am officially Alpha Canis Minoris
for the astronomers’ world,
from now on I promise to watch over this painting.”