Chariot-racing at Leptis Magna in a mosaic

The circus of the Roman city of Leptis Magna in Libya was plundered for stone by a rascally Frenchman a couple of centuries ago.  However we can get a good idea of what it looked like from a mosaic at the Villa Selene, nearby.  Unfortunately it’s not that easy to make out.  Here’s my 2006 photograph, taken from one end.

Villa Selene nr Leptis Magna - chariot racing (original)
Villa Selene nr Leptis Magna – chariot racing (original)

However I discovered a funny thing this evening.  I loaded that image into Paint.Net this evening and, idly, hit the menu option to “auto-level”.  This never does anything useful; but it’s the top option on effects, so I often try it.  And … there is always a first time, and this is what I got! —

Villa Selene, chariot racers - autoleveled
Villa Selene, chariot racers – autoleveled

Suddenly we can see!  The gates at one end, the spina, even the colours, all become possible.

Digital photography … it is such a gift!