HomePOPULARArtificial Intelligence Unveils Plato's Burial Place from Ancient Papyrus Scrolls

Artificial Intelligence Unveils Plato’s Burial Place from Ancient Papyrus Scrolls

In a remarkable fusion of modern technology and ancient history, researchers at the University of Pisa in Italy have utilized artificial intelligence (AI) to unlock the secrets of ancient papyrus scrolls, shedding light on the burial place of the renowned Greek philosopher Plato.

The scrolls, discovered in Herculaneum, a town near Pompeii devastated by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79, have long remained shrouded in mystery due to their fragile, carbonized state. However, recent advancements in AI and scanning technology have enabled researchers to delve into their contents without risking damage.

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According to a report by Live Science, one of the scrolls contains writings attributed to Philodemus of Gadara, a philosopher with ties to Athens and Italy. Within these ancient texts, references to Plato’s burial place were uncovered, providing valuable insights into the final resting place of the revered thinker.

While historians were aware of Plato’s burial at the academy he founded in Athens, the precise location had eluded them until now. Through meticulous analysis utilizing optical imaging, thermal imaging, and tomography, researchers managed to decipher approximately 30% of the text, revealing crucial details about Plato’s interment.

“Among the most important news, we read that Plato was buried in the garden reserved for him (a private area intended for the Platonic school) of the Academy in Athens, near the so-called Museion or sacellum sacred to the Muses. Until now it was only known that he was buried generically in the Academy,” the researchers stated in a statement.

This groundbreaking achievement represents yet another instance of AI revolutionizing the field of archaeology and historical research. Earlier this year, similar techniques were employed to decipher another charred scroll, offering glimpses into life before the catastrophic eruption that engulfed the region.

As technology continues to evolve, scholars anticipate further discoveries and revelations from the annals of antiquity, enriching our understanding of the past and illuminating the legacies of figures like Plato for generations to come.

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