Good-bye Lion

Oh crap, another one. The worst one yet, by some accounts. AFP via the Guardian:

Islamic State jihadis have destroyed a 2,000-year-old statue of a lion outside the museum in the Syrian city of Palmyra, the country’s antiquities director has said.

Maamoun Abdelkarim said the statue, known as the Lion of al-Lat, was an irreplaceable piece. “IS members on Saturday destroyed the Lion of al-Lat, which is a unique piece that is three metres [10ft] tall and weighs 15 tonnes,” Abdelkarim told AFP. “It’s the most serious crime they have committed against Palmyra’s heritage.”

The limestone statue was discovered in 1977 by a Polish archaeological mission at the temple of al-Lat, a pre-Islamic Arabian goddess, and dated back to the 1st century BC.

Abdelkarim said the statue had been covered with a metal plate and sandbags to protect it from fighting, “but we never imagined that IS would come to the town to destroy it.”

lion of al ata

That. It’s gone now. It’s rubble. It was there, a testimony to a human genius for art and sublimity, and now it’s just lumps of stone.


  1. rjw1 says

    No doubt there are IS supporters throughout North Africa and as far as Pakistan, so any graven image or Kuffar artefact is a target. I’m amazed that some barking-mad Islamists haven’t already attacked the Cairo Museum or used a bulldozer on the Indus Valley sites in Pakistan. No work of art in the West is safe either.

  2. Knight in Sour Armor says

    If there ever was a compelling reason to go after these guys, it is to stop them from destroying historical artifacts.

  3. Silentbob says

    @ 2 Knight in Sour Armor

    Um… you realise they kill, rape and enslave people, right?


  4. Knight in Sour Armor says

    @ 5. Siletbob

    Yes, but that’s hardly a unique bundle of atrocities… hell, the US has trained a number of South American groups that are fond of doing that to fight the communists.

  5. Helene says

    Ok, Knight in Sour Armor, so murder, rape and enslavement wasn’t reason – or special – enough? And what’s the exchange rate on ancient lions in the desert? Three stonings (hmm, I wasn’t aware that the US was teaching that technique)? One beheading and one rape? But do tell us more about the nasty Americans.

  6. daba says

    Hello, StevoR!

    Daesh are vandals, murders and utter scum. But we knew that already. We need to do more to stop them although I don’t quite know what.

    The vandalic tribes would like you to apologize to them. Though they did ransack Rome, they feel that vandals are unjustly singled out for actions practiced by many at the time and feel that it cannot be compared to committed to ISIL.

    Thus prompt considerate apology would be appropriate.

    As well vandals are considering campaigning to change term “act of vandalism” to “act of isilism” as it more appropriate of current times.

    Many thanks in advance,
    Self appointed Vandalic tribe apologist

  7. Lady Mondegreen says


    [blockquote]Quote someone[/blockquote]

    Except instead of [ ]s, use s.

  8. Lady Mondegreen says

    Oops. They went invisible.

    Use the pointy, arrowhead-like brackets. These: >

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