A Conversation for The Antrum of Initiation, Baia, Italy

oracle of the dead baia

Post 1


I worked with Dr Robert Paget in the 70's up until the time he died. we worked with him on the oracle project and many others in the area for some five years. I went down the tunnel to the 'river styx' and with a co-worker we dived the paved walkway down into the 'river'. There were caverns off to the sides which were thermal and my mate nearly got cooked. We had to get out as the water temperature was too hot to proceed. We then put dye in the water to see where it came out around the Cuma peninsular. It took 14 days to emerge on the northern side of Capo Miseno.

About 2004 my partner at the time of our explorations picked up on an article which said that Robert Temple was the first person to discover this tunnel. I contacted him and and told him that we had already been down there many years previously. After our explorations the Italians closed the entries which we had opened.

I note that Temple says that there is no cavern of the sybil in the Lago d'averno. Not true. For many years this was a tourist attraction and was not fully investigated.

The whole area around there is a maze of tunnels, one of which runs all the way from Averno, under the volcano and under the marshes out to Cuma, which is another really interesting site. It was built by the Romans to get their troops quickly from the Cuma camp to the ships moored up in Lago d'averno. No reason at all why one could not have been dug from Sybil to Oracle!!!!!

I find it sad that Dr Paget, who spent 13 years trying to find the 'Oracle' then when he discovered it and exploring it, is not given the credit. By the way, after he died we discovered many more tunnels in the hillside behind Baia, many of which were very scary. We also, on his instructions discovered a 90ft mooring tower off Baia in 90ft of water at the top, which he suggested was the mooring for the Caliguala's bridge of boats to Pozzuoli. And further out to sea in the same direction we found a roman vessel and could see another but it was too deep for us to investigate at the time.

Lets remember that Dr Paget lived there and Temple visited.

Best Regards and if you want any more info contact me.
Paulsmiley - wah

oracle of the dead baia

Post 2


Good to hear from you.

One of the high points for me of the summer of 1983 which I spent doing archaeological work in Italy was a weekend visit to Cumae. I had not yet learned of Dr. Paget's discoveries and I've not since had the opportunity to go back. I well remember the Roman troop transport tunnel you mention, but one of the most wonderful memories is the sight and sound of fallen leaves blowing through the ruins of the Acropolis, inevitably bringing to mind the leaves upon which the Sybil wrote her prophecies.

I hope in the article I gave appropriate credit to Dr. Paget. I certainly intended to, since my own opinion of Temple is that he's a journalist and a populariser, not a scholar.

oracle of the dead baia

Post 3


Paul, please get in touch with me if you ever read this. I have now made a website about the oracle at www.oracleofthedead.com and am in touch with two people who knew Dr Paget very well and have been in the tunnels many times. Please email me at info[at]oracleofthedead[dot]com

oracle of the dead baia

Post 4


Paul, please contact me, [email protected].
I knew you and Phill Blake when you were in Naples. I met you at Garibaldi's among other places!

oracle of the dead baia

Post 5

belle riggs

They are really absurd for not crediting the real owner. I hope he gets the justice he deserved in the first place. It's his works though. https://stardewvalleys.com/

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