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Roman Temple of Mithras May Align with Sun on 'Jesus' Birthday'

The temple of Mithras disclosed three main stages of development, the second exhibiting two reconstructions.
 
Owen Jarus — Live Science
17 May 2018
 
This 1,800-year-old temple was dedicated to the god Mithras.

This 1,800-year-old temple was dedicated to the god Mithras.
De Agostini/S. Vannini/REX/Shutterstock

An 1,800-year-old temple in northern England that is dedicated to the god Mithras was built to align with the rising sun on Dec. 25, a physics professor has found.

The temple is located beside a Roman fort in Carrawburgh, near Hadrian's Wall, which served as the most northerly frontier to the Roman Empire, beginning around A.D. 122.

We can easily see that the building is in good alignment along the sunrise on December 25
Some modern-day scholars believe that the Romans celebrated Mithras' birthday on Dec. 25 — the same day eventually chosen by Christians to celebrate the birth of Christ. (Scholars don't really think Jesus was born on that day.)

Using satellite imagery and astronomical software that shows the direction of the sunrises and sunsets, "we can easily see that the building is in good alignment along the sunrise on December 25," wrote Amelia Carolina Sparavigna, a physics professor at the Politecnico di Torino in Italy, in a paper published online recently in the journal Philica. The paper has not been peer reviewed.

Read the entire article on Live Science.

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