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The End of Salt... or Not

In: English and Literature

Submitted By lproth19
Words 1037
Pages 5
The end of Salt… or Not

There were many aspects to our class that I found interested and engaging, even for one who has never been fond of history education. For so many years I have never been able to appreciate the founding of historical beings, artifacts, traditions, and even religion. I did enjoy our text that we were given this year; it was easy to read, didn’t bore me, gave illustrations that were factual but also entertaining, and also intrigued my mind. So many things in our age we take advantage of, we have no idea where things originated from, and in all honesty may be the wrong direction in which most of our generation and future generation are choosing to go in. Salt for example, I would have never thought to be such a significant mineral, or asset to a particular era or development of.
I first have to address the way in which the author of our salt reading wrote. She was funny, educational, and I would think appealing to most readers. Maybe to some it seemed insignificant but to me it made me begin to look at the littlest of things and wonder where, when, and why did it originate. Salt was the beginning of something huge for this time. As we learned it was the most common commodity used in its times. As I spoke about in my first journal entry, the Egyptians using Nortran to preserve those that passed bodies, they also used it for fresh food so that it would not spoil. Most importantly while reading I began to see how the importance of trade became. Importing and exporting, which is still of huge importance to our modern day countries, was just as important in this time period. Some of the settled cultures were in need of salt, some needed other things such as food, gold, fresh fish, glass, dyes, and other protein sourced food that could be used to feed their family and community. These things were obviously just the beginning to salt. When viewing the videos, and touring the website, I made my son, my parents, everyone, view the Wieliczka YouTube video because I was astonished that such an astounding architectural building was in existence, it was very saddening to know that a majority of the viewing of the salt mines was closed to the public because of the danger and cost to upkeep such a place.
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I viewed the first website posted, and to be honest I don’t remember it catching my attention as much as the others. The amount of work and tradition that was placed on the Wieliczka production was fascinating. Everything they believed in, in that era was eventually muraled on the walls. What amazed me the most were the statues carved in salt of infamous people of that time and the detail portrayed. You really couldn’t believe that it truly was done of salt mineral.
The presence of these mines is probably one of the most factual artifacts we have from that time, which is amazing to me. There are so many things we read and learn about that you have to just believe to be true in all aspects of life, historically more than anything. How do we know this person really did this? How do we know that this war happened this way when there were no cameras, no first hand writings, no actual proof that this happened. Well, the salt mines are factual and that proves the significance of such a minor thing in our own lives, in this century and how important and life changing it could be.
To be honest, looking through the text, there aren’t too many artifacts such as this that are as matter of fact. We can believe the writings of the wars, we know the weaponry advanced because of art, and writings. We definitely have some weapons preserved from those times but most things in history are matter of fact. This is what it says and this is how it was. I enjoyed learning of the eras of European history, maybe it’s because I’m in a different time of my life and find things like this of importance, or maybe it’s because so many things were relatable to the future. Relative to how things are now, and most importantly how they came to be.
Catholicism was obviously a huge factor in Roman history over time, as we can see of the imprints that were made over time on the walls of the Wieliczka. They wanted to preserve the way of living, the most important aspect of their lives, which at their time was to survive, and to dedicate their lives to Christ. Many of the sculptures made by these simple labors depict biblical scenes that they were so familiar with – Christ teaching at the Temple, the Flight into Egypt, the Wedding Feast where Christ changed wine into water at the bequest of His Mother. Now taking a step back, Catholicism is new to me, I feel like I am forever learning something new. There are certainly the general photographs, sculptures, and scripture passages I can relate and recognize with. But to be certain, I grew up in Utah, knew one Catholic, and the most I have been educated on Catholicism is through weddings I have been in throughout the years, and the college I attend. To me, I find it fascinating that this basis of belief has traveled through so many generations and held up to what was believed in so long ago, Or so it seems.
In closing, I have to say this class was one of the most interesting, and helpful historical classes I have taken, I have been able to read something and give my ideas on what I thought may or may not have taken place. I have learned a great deal of classic European history and it has given me insight in a lot of what goes on, even today. I hope to, and will continue to educate myself on these things, and my son says when he is a rich scientist, he will take me to see the salt mines.…...

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